The Scalextric Legends
Lotus 72E & Tyrrell 002
This review is likely old news to most veteran enthusiasts. These models have been with us for awhile now, but just recently were released individually. There is nothing perfect in this hobby and neither are the 1/32nd scale examples of these historic racers. Yet for those who do not mind a little work, look out. The term addicting comes to mind.
The Love/Hate Relationship
Let's get right to the point shall we? These models have a far too powerful motor inside for my taste. Although they are "slimline" and Scalextric publishes ratings of 18K, they are more like 23K. And inside these lighter/smaller models they create a very challenging drive to say the least. To make matters worse for the would be racer, taking these models apart to change the motor is NOT a task for everyone. They can be cantankerous to put it mildly and you can easily damage the models when attempting it.
Now you are armed with that knowledge. Please try and remember it while I explain how I still enjoy them. Nothing is perfect in our hobby and these models have shortcoming like all others.
Depending on your track and your own personal taste in racing action, you can enjoy these models WITHOUT going through the teardown process. I will share our approach and hopefully will show you how much fun they can be with almost zero effort.
And FUN is what they really are. Once we found that "sweet spot" in the tuning process, my own addiction to these models is almost shameful. It seemed no matter to me if they were only offered in collector boxed sets or individually. I had to have more. Why? Well just look at them. These are some of the nicest looking models in our hobby today from this brand. I have not been the biggest fan of Scalextric in the past few years as they produce mostly models I have zero interest in. Aside from a few standouts here and there as well as the occasional Trans-Am release, my Scalextric purchases are far less than other brands. But these models? They are literally irresistible.
Presenting The Latest
A fine example is the 2 new models before you. Having the previous boxed edition with nearly identical cars could not stop me from having them.
The detail level and overall scale appeal receives high marks from me. Are they perfect? No. Are they close enough for me? YES. What about you?
The scale compromises made for the crown gears do not bother me in the least. Helmet & wheel appearance as well. It does bother others. I respect that and will not try to argue the point. They are what they are. I will say that the whole time we have raced them, we never stopped and put them away because we felt these issues were that important. Like any model we have reviewed, YOU make the call.
The undersides are pretty bare in regards to detail or revealing anything mechanical. The screws you see that assist in holding them together are nothing short of fickle. Removing them is only the first step in trying to wrestle these cars apart. For SOME enthusiasts it is easy. I am not one of them.
PLEASE AVOID THE FOLLOWING. Disassembly may result in damage!
Taking apart this Lotus may seem to be easy. It isn't. The previous model had either glue or clearcoat sealing the suspension assembly and more damage occurred. This one still takes a steady hand and care when prying it apart.
You might notice the lower shock mount on this side broke away. Not a serious issue as it will go back together and you would never see it. You could glue it back if you just had to.
Although the car tested fine out of the box, I noticed the pinion was a little further away from full gear mesh of the crown than I liked. If you take it apart and see that yours is this way, just use a small flat tip and push the pinion back a little further.
The Tyrrell is the more cantankerous of the two. Aside from flexing the exhaust braces, the biggest hurdle is the suspension mounts on the axle. As you see above, regardless if it is adhesive, clearcoat, or wet paint, this area took damage. Prying them apart only lead to the tabs breaking flush. They can be easily repaired by sanding them flush and once installed, you can glue them.
The rear oil cooler tank/exhaust support bracket is also very difficult. I used a small flat tip screw driver and had to pry on each side until it broke free. And break is the word. You can see that the glue did not loosen and the small tab broke. That's ok though, I will glue it back when finished.
Hopefully this gives you a good idea on the difficulty and you avoid it. I fully respect that swapping motors really make them drive the best on stock voltage (12 volts). But unless you truly have to, I would try and avoid all of this.
TUNING FOR OUR TRACK
As you saw in the first video, these models run pretty well without a motor change. That is when you turn down the power. Many veteran enthusiasts have adjustable power of some sort and likely more advanced controllers. These can be significant investments and my reason for it is the ability to adjust the racing environment for the models. Given that we have invested in these items, makes sense to me to use them.
1. Power adjusted to 10 1/2
2. Paul Gage Tires Added
3. Sheet Lead Added
4. Difalco Controllers Dialed In.
Both models had Paul Gage urethanes installed. Either size will fit the wheel. The wheel rib is a touch over 6mm but the 22166FF fits just fine as the tires are designed to stretch a little and still perform.
I hesitate a little in showing lead placement as it will differ from person to person. This is the amount I used and found it really helps to further tame the models action.
As you may have guessed, I like these models. Despite the motor and difficulty in disassembly. Once we figured out that we should simply use the tools at our disposal, operation is much improved. It showed me I did not need to take them apart and change anything.
Although I really like these models, I cannot say they are for everyone. They are delicate and with the stock motor on normal tracks, much too powerful to really enjoy. Hopefully this review has helped you decide for yourself.
Feel free to CONTACT ME about this review or just the hobby in general.
Thanks go to CINCYSLOTS for sponsoring this review.
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