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"Classic" Astro V
#1

In the mid/late sixties the "Thingie" craze hit the slot car world, with the Cox LaCucaracha at the forefront of the numerous launches. "Classic" industries was a manufacturer that focused on this thingie craze, and produced numerous models, including the Asp, Manta Ray, Stinger, Gamma Ray, Serpent, and the Astro V........with the Manta Ray still the  #1 selling slot car ever  (well over 1 million sold !!!)

All in all, "Classic" Industries sold several million of their "Thingie" range models........compare that to the 2/3 thousand sold per model in the current day.

One of the club guys from Canada's west coast had an old Astro V, and found that it was less than impressive, when he tried to run it on their club track...(not surprising as the old sponge tires were rocks, the braid severely worn/oxidized, and the axles almost seized). He contacted me, and asked if I would rebuilt it, and with my love of  Vintage slot cars, (but I must admit, I really don't like "thingies) ), ....I said I would. 

I did not take any "before" shots, nor did a take a picture of the body ( I stole one from "Images") ,.........this thread is mainly to show you folks an Astro V, and what the running gear looked like.

Cheers
Chris Walker

The "Classic" Industries "Astro V",......to my mind a fairly hideous looking thing, and in my opinion the most ridiculous thingie produced by "Classic".......not to say I was terribly attracted to the other 'Classic" models[Image: rolleyes.png]

Definitely "Land speed record" looking......and considering its launch date, it is highly conceivable that some of the "Bonneville" guys took some inspiration from this shape !!.........I took the following pic. from "Images".

[Image: fetch?id=28115&d=1585071611]

While I tried to use as many of the supplied parts as possible, I did have to substitute many Vintage parts from my parts stash..............4 new tires glued/trued, (yes the fronts/rears on the original were that size !! ), a new rear axle, a new pinion (8T to replace the stock 10T), lead wire, rear axle bushings, and some new vintage (screw on) braid.

The car was given a good clean/polish, the chassis was straightened, the beefy 36D motor taken apart/overhauled, and a small hole was drilled into the front chassis crossmember and the drop arm,..this allows the use of a small nut/bolt to be used to freeze the drop arm, and with the addition/subtraction of spacers on the bolt between the chassis and drop arm, the guide height can be adjusted.....(drop arms basically disappeared in the late 60's....for good reason [Image: thumbup.gif] )

It runs really really well,..........much better than I remember the ones I saw as a kid........I think the owner will be more than pleased [Image: smile.png]

[Image: fetch?id=28150&d=1585083263]



[Image: fetch?id=28117&d=1585072412]


Cheers
Chris Walker
[+] 5 members Like chrisguyw's post
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#2

When was the last time you raced a thingie Chris?

Life is like a box of Slot cars... Cool Drinkingcheers
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#3

(30th-Jul-22, 10:40 PM)Kevan Wrote:  When was the last time you raced a thingie Chris?

Well,.............it must have been close to 25 yrs. ago !!!

A few of the folks racing at Ernie Mosetti's (MRSlotcar) commercial track decided that we should have a Vintage "Thingie" series, using production based cars from the mid 60's. Although not a Thingie fan, I was cajoled into joining in, and I managed to find a Cox La Cucaracha in reasonable shape and rebuilt/raced it.

I must admit it was fun (most slotcar racing is), but I would certainly have preferred to be racing sports/CanAm/USRRC cars.

Anyway, I still have the car, and while it never gets raced, I do run it round my track periodically, just to make sure it still goes.

The chassis was taken apart, a brass insert installed on the center "ISO" motor carrier/guide tongue, and a nut bolt was used to both freeze the drop arm, and to allow for ride height adjustment.

The motor (a Cox "Nascar" FT16D) was taken apart, period Arco 33 magnets and shim installed, the gimballed can end bushing was soldered in, and it was rewound with 70 turns of 30 gauge wire, comm cut, and balanced. (Since then it has been further refurbed by John Havlicek, and it is John's rebuilt motor in the car below).
There is a Parma PSE Crown installed in the car in the pic., but it ran in the series with the correct Cox Crown....additionally, it now sits on urethane tires (original "grey" Ortmanns'/Cox taper lok hubs), but did race with sponge boots/stock Cox wheels.

[Image: 2004-01-01-00-00-00.jpg]

I did paint the body, but as it is polypropylene I should not have done this, as it is a bugger to get paint to stick to.

[Image: 2008-12-22-16-16-29.jpg]

Cheers
Chris Walker
[+] 3 members Like chrisguyw's post
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#4

Wow...that's 18 years before I even got interested in Slot cars.

Life is like a box of Slot cars... Cool Drinkingcheers
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#5

Ahhh Chris = absolutely wonderful work again - but you know I am a huge admirer of all that you do ;)
[+] 1 member Likes Anthony B's post
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