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Registration Date: 12th-Apr-19
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Virtual Orpington Swapmeet April 2020 9
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Virtual Orpington Swapmeet April 2020 Events
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With most countries in lock down, slot car enthusiasts are missing out on some of our springtime swapmeets and slot car shows. So here's my attempt to create a virtual London International Slotcar Show (aka the Orpington Swapmeet) at home...

First things first - you'll need to get up early and stand outside the house in the chilly morning air - ideally with the smell of freshly-cooked bacon wafting through an open window...

At a pre-arranged time, open the door, dash past whatever interesting slot car stuff might be in the hallway, pay your £1 entry and settle down on your computer, tablet or phone to see what some of the usual stall-holders have for sale. Unfold your shopping list... and then forget about it. Also forget the budget you set yourself the night before.

If you haven't had breakfast, grab a bacon roll and cup of tea - and wave goodbye to all the very best bargains as they are snapped up. Although in our virtual swapmeet, you can eat and shop at the same time...

As you enter the show, it's difficult to miss what show organiser Phil Smith has to offer - his tables cover the end of the hall next to the entrance. Our first virtual stop should probably be his website: https://www.philsmith.co.uk/ - that's mostly all the mint-in-box stuff. If you want something that's used, unboxed and normally found  in the trays, just send him an email.

Next stop for me is usually Typhoon Slots and Models - but like quite a few retailers, the web store is temporarily closed. You can still have a browse: https://www.typhoonslotsandmodels.com/


Definitely open for business is George Turner Models: http://www.georgeturnermodels.com/ - George has quite a few new kits on the site and more that he'd planned to take to the UK Slot Car Festival. Perfect projects for those of us with some time on our hands. Of course, a highlight of any Orpington swapmeet is a good natter and gossip with George - we'll have to make do with his entertaining  musings in the News section of the GTM website and on Facebook.

Usually opposite George is the RS Slot Racing stand with wheels, Ortmann tyres and fabulous Immense Miniatures driver heads: http://www.rsslotracing.com/index.htm

Often squeezed next to RS Slot Racing was John Secchi. It came as a sad shock to our UK slot car community that John recently passed away. We will miss you John.

One of the stands in the side room is the National Scalextric Collectors Club - definitely check out their site and consider joining: https://www.nscc.co.uk/

For new cars, Steve Cannon (aka Triplex) is worth a look, usually to be found just by the steps to the stage. Steve can be found on eBay here: https://www.topratedseller.com/ebay/triplex

Mark travels all the way from Stockport with the Scale Models stand: http://www.scalemodels.co.uk/. The website lists RUSC spares, general spares and accessories - with links to new and used cars on eBay.


Up on the stage at recent events has been the fabulous Slot Track Scenics: https://www.slottrackscenics.co.uk/

Walking down the other side of the hall and you'll come across Adrian Norman and his 'Scalextric - The Ultimate Guide' book. You can get a flavour of Adrian's knowledge of slot cars - and buy his book direct -  on the Slot Car Portal website: https://slotcarportal.com/

One of my favourite vendors on that side of the room is the Slot Outlet: http://www.ebaystores.co.uk/theslotoutlet

There are, of course, plenty more stall holders from around the UK and mainland Europe - most of whom sell on eBay or various Facebook groups. And that's probably where you'll be heading next after another cup of tea and a second bacon roll... Just remember that shopping list and your budget.

I don't think I'm alone in enjoying the chat as much as the browsing and buying. It's not quite the same, but slot car forums and Facebook groups will have to do for now. And there is the delightful benefit of including people from all around the world - not just an hour's drive from Orpington.

The next real London International Slotcar Show is scheduled for Sunday 15th November at the Crofton Halls in Orpington. Doors open at 10.30am. Stay safe and hope to see you there.