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ScaleAuto Home Series 991 5
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ScaleAuto Home Series 991 Reviews
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Health Warning: Epistle follows

I took two examples of the ScaleAuto models of Porsche 991 GT cars for a tune and test comparison.
This is for wood track racing, so obviously non-magnet, and some priorities will be different to racing on plastic.
First I am opening up this "Home Series" car, to see what you get for
about what a basic Scalextric will cost you. **
I used this particular livery, because it was from a ScaleAuto/IBB event I attended, the Campeonato de Espana de Slot.
A huge event with over 500 entrants, hosted at their complex in Iguelada in Spain - about 90 minutes inland from Barcelona.
Lots of fun, even as a spectator.

I will do the setup on the "R" series car in a separate review.

Take the paper protector off the underside of the box, you can then remove the clear top, and remove the 2 screws securing the car to the

base. Don't throw them away. These are the same screws as used to secure the body to the chassis, and they are "half-smooth shaft",
to eliminate "catching" of the chassis when setting up the body for "float". - what a useful idea. Point the first +1 to ScaleAuto
[Image: porsche1.jpg]
The car sits nice and low, and has great detail in the photo etched parts. +1
[Image: porsche2.jpg]

Look at those two part body latches. They look like they swivel to open. The body is nice and light, keeping the COG low. +1

[Image: porsche3.jpg]
The body is a 2-screw mount, using those smooth half shaft screws, and rocks nicely, with no apparent obstructions. No need for chassis sanding.

Under the lid we have a sidewinder setup with a 20,500rpm S-can. It is a regular FC-130, with a bell at one end - BUT, it is a "Can-end" drive.
Driving from the Can end where you have a brass bush set into the metal gives a more robust structure for taking the load. It is much
preferable to my thinking than the bell-end drive we see so often. +1
The ScaleAuto S-Can motors have very high torque, and it is as least as quick as a Slot.it MX16 or Shark 22k, and robably too high powered for small
home tracks.
ScaleAuto have altered their plastics composition in the past two years, and the result is more rigid chassis which are better for wood racing.
They also seem much less prone to cracking, which was a past failing on some past models.

Almost hidden under the rear of the motor is a small magnet, which gives medium down-force, but not as much as a Scaley, similar to Slot.it magnets.
There is a matching pocket forward of the motor. Then I noticed another almost hidden item.
[Image: porsche4.jpg]
There is a screw securing the motor into the pod, turning it into a bracing element for the chassis. +1 Mr ScaleAuto
Now to the things that propel it forward. Above you can see the simple nylon pinion and spur, they mesh nicely, but there is also a small dob

of red grease smeared on the chassis right where the gears meet, and as I started the car up at 3 volts, the white pinion turned pink at the
contact point. +1 for this.
The wheels are press fit plastic, I tried turning them, but they felt very tight and I was fortunate I didn't snap one as I applied a lot of force

trying to move it. Then I pulled - AHA. Off it came.
[Image: porsche5.jpg]
The rear wheels have an axle with a large "flat" keyed into it, as has the wheel. This prevents the wheel ever slipping on the smooth shaft,

and I think is a better alternative than knurled axle ends. +1 In this case it is also absolutely necessary, as there is ZERO slop where the axle
passes through the bush in the chassis.
I see "claws" - you know, claws, like on a Slot.it pod. And yes, inside those claws, guess what we find.
[Image: porsche6.jpg]
Yep. self aligning bushes, just like the Slot.it ones. +1 hhmmm... I wonder. Into my war chest, out with a Slot.it axle and a selection of the

older brass and new version sintered bronze bushes by Slot.it. Yes, they slide exactly onto the ScaleAuto axle, as does the ScaleAuto one onto a Slot.it
axle. No slop, equal fit. CLICK, and yes, the Slot.it ones fit perfectly into the claws in the chassis. That's handy. We now know the axles, and these
bushes are interchangeable with Slot.it parts. +1
Therefore so are both brands of wheels. Note that the axle has a reduced diameter through the centre section to provide sidewinder motor

clearance and make it lighter +1
The wee red things are 1.5mm nylon spacers to set the drive train width and eliminate sideways movement of the axle. It is the same as we

go up front, more spacers to set the track width there. +1
[Image: porsche7.jpg]
As you see in the bottom of the picture above, there are chassis holes, which are to make it compatible for the main digital systems

- Scalextric, Slot.it and Carrera. +1 Just inside the main axle posts are two movable and removable axle holders that have axle size holes to
prevent vertical play. But look what else we have, holes for M2 grub screws either side for setting front axle ride height and eliminate axle slop.
There are matching holes underneath, so into the war chest for some M2 3mm long grub screws - it only needs 3mm ones; and so I set the
ride height with these and took out the slop. +1
I have opted to remove those small axle holders and use just the grub screws, as I prefer the way the axle spins very freely with this method.

Others may want to retain those holders, and use only lower grub screws to lift the axle enough to fully lower the guide into the slot.
You do however risk the axle holders tramping up under corner load and sticking.
The lead wires are pretty thin, similar to Scaley ones, but then the motor isn't exactly cranking amps.

They are neatly routed up the sides, secured by clips, and under the axle for safety. +1
The guide is a typical press-fit job with brass eyelets. The braid is too stiff for my liking, and a bit thick. I will swap that out. No score here.

The front wheels are not keyed. I guess as they don't have to bear the load of rotational stress.
Ah, the tyres, low profile as needed with these big 17mm wheels, the fronts look fine. The rears are a soft "rubber" but of the kind that feels

like a silicon tyre. They may be fine for plastic track racing, but will need swapping out for wood racing.

That is a score of 14 good things I consider ScaleAuto have done in the developing these "Home Series" cars
The chassis seems fairly flat, but one front wheel looks slightly high, so I will give the chassis bath to flatten it.
[Image: porsche8.jpg]
Oh Oh #@(&#%* and @(&#%, @#&#% and $(&#%
I took out the motor screw and just twisted and pushed. "CRACK" Snapped the chassis right where the motor screw goes through.

Lesson for all - do this bit carefully and don't twist the chassis. I haven't any spares yet, so out comes the "gel" superglue;
a quick repair is done. It should hold, this gel glue is very strong, like a welding element.
Into the hot bath it goes for a couple of hours slow cooling.
[Image: porsche9.jpg]
Bath done, I cracked it again refitting the motor, so re-glued with the motor in place and added a brass strap along the edge of the motor to

hold the front and back of the motor mount rigid. I have fitted Slot.it 1172 N22 tyres to the rear hubs, glued and trued.
I have kept the original front tyres, which were easy to glue and true, less than 5 minutes each.

Everything reassembled, front axle height set, about 6 grams of lead added just behind the guide as first estimate, It spins up very smoothly
on my static bench, and on the resistance board it shows no signs of anything untoward under load. Ready for a track test.

Where The Rubber Meets The Road
Thanks to Peter for the use of Circuito Bahia Vista for testing the Porsche.
[Image: porsche10.jpg]
Circuito Bahia Vista is a very technical 20 metre track with about 10 turns, and only two places you can open the throttle - briefly. The car

sits nice & low, and first laps told me it is easy to drive. It was pretty smooth first up, and my only fiddling was with the amount of body float.
[Image: porsche11.jpg]
Once I had familiarised myself with the handling on track I was able to go sub 7 seconds, ending up with a 6.8. The only things I think it

needs now, are a little more weight up front - I think another 2-3 grams behind the front axle; and I will need to add a dot of glue to one rear
wheel as all my assembling and disassembling has left it with a not very tight fit on the axle and it began to work loose under cornering load.
[Image: porsche12.jpg]
All in all, the car is pretty competitive with only the addition of some better rubber, weight, soft braid, and a swap to grub screws for setting the front

axle height. I am pleased with what can be achieved with a Home Series car and a bit of track tuning.

Footnote: After final tweaks, I took this wood track racing on the tracks of some of our club members, and it beat out just about everything, from Scaley,
Ninco, Scaleauto podded, and even all but one NSR GT3 cars for our power restricted (No big boxer motors, only baby kings) GT3 class.
I have now retired it to run a Sideways Huracan, but honestly, it's lap times are only 1/10th of a lap slower than the best of any brand I can throw at it.


Footnote 2:  I realised later that this chassis is based off the same chassis as the podded version. In theory, you could dremel out the middle section,
leaving space to fit a Slot.it pod - the pod mount holes all line up.