Slot car racing, by the name itself, is focused on controlling the car while on the track. The name ‘slot’ itself refers to the grooves in the racetrack that prevents the cars from falling off of the track. But slot car racing needs more than grooves for total control. Drivers need to have something in their hands to have full control over the acceleration, breaking and general performance of their slot car. They need the slot car controller.
Analog Slot Car Controllers
Analog slot car controllers are handheld devices that distribute the desired amount of voltage to the slot car on the track. A trigger, a common part of the controller, is connected to an electrical contact that is then connected to a resistor. When this trigger is squeezed, the track sends more voltage to the car, thereby causing it to pick up speed. When released, the reverse happens and the car slows down. The resistance of the controller is measured in ohms which should be noted as changes in the resistance positively affect the response time of the car.
But analog slot car controllers provide more than better manageability of the voltage received by the car. Without this, drivers would have lesser ability to make turns when needed or to follow a straight path where there are long straight sections on the track.
Modifications in the extent of control controllers provide have somewhat emerged in recent years. As opposed to the older system of squeezing and releasing the trigger to speed up or slow down the car, newer controllers now provide at-the-push-of-the-button breaking system. These controllers come with an integrated button which sends negative voltage (remember the positive effect of resistance on response time?) to the slot car’s electric motor. This action then causes the car to stop.
Improvements in analog slot car controllers have also paved the way for even better control on the breaking system. More advanced controllers are not equipped with a highly accurate system of controlling breaking power which lends these newer controllers a decent advantage over drivers during turns in the track.
Electronic Slot Car Controllers
Electronic slot car controllers, on the other hand, pick up where their older counterparts left off. Unlike analog controllers, these do not use the same system of power delivery to the grooves on the track. Instead, these use an electronic circuit that distributes the precise voltage amount needed by the car. This also offers better car performance, improved control of the car, and better command with virtually all motor setups. These also work very well with cars that have different magnet setups.
Getting Yourself A Slot Car Controller
Choosing between an analog and electric slot car controllers is basically a matter of preference. Most slot car drivers begin with analog slot car controllers. These are relatively much cheaper than electronic ones and do not require much know-how and electronic savvy. Enthusiasts, on the other hand, prefer the more complex system used in electronic slot cars.
Electronic controllers allow better power manageability and excellent breaking systems which make it very easy for drivers to control their cars on the racetrack.