Phase 4 – The Great Expansion

Aperture:f/2.8
Focal Length:5mm
ISO:800
Shutter:1/20 sec
Camera:Canon PowerShot SD1400 IS

 

Finishing the elevated portion of the track got me fired up to do something with the other side. It looks so much better painted and landscaped than rough plywood. The challenge with landscaping is once you head down that road, revising the track layout is problematic. I had it in my head that I could expand the track without expanding the table. Then I saw another track that looped back all over itself and this concept was incorporated into what I’m calling “The Great Expansion”.

I went through several iterations with Ultimate Racer track design software and finally, AutoCAD. The end result was I’ve added 9 standard straights, 6 1/60 curves and two additional straight lane changer sections and eliminated the two crossovers and the squeeze. This increased the track length from 40′ to 60′ without expanding the table.

The crossovers and squeeze were removed because although they may be challenging strategically to an experienced driver, for my kids they were at best a place to accidentally get knocked off the track and at worst, a spot which you could stage from ahead of time and intentionally knock your brother off the track.

And since I am the designated turn marshal and car picker upper guy, I moved the lane changers towards the front, away from the back wall where they are hard to reach.

After I designed the initial track layout, I created a support plan. My first attempt at this, I did 12″ spacing and what I learned from that was placing supports at track connections was more important than even spacing.

TGE-2

I did a test fit to make sure the track was centered on the supports and that it was drivable.

TGE-3

TGE-4

TGE-5

Rather than plywood, I opted for foam board as the underlying road surface. It’s easier to work with and plenty strong enough.

TGE-6

Phase 5 – Landscaping and Painting the Great Expansion

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