Magnabraid blowing fuses.

How DO they do that??

Magnabraid blowing fuses.

Postby wixwacing » Sun 15 Jul, 2012 8:42 pm

On a very recent race night on a local track we managed to blow the main power supply fuse. Not a big deal but not something you want to happen in the heat of a race. The fuse was changed to one a little higher and racing continued. Part way through the event there was smoke coming out of the 25 amp power supply!! Racing was halted and investigations began. Nothing in particular was accountable for this phenomenon, but working backwards from the event we can only come up to one conclusion. When the fuse first blew there were two or three Slot.its on the track warming up for the first event. A little later when the race was on with the higher rated fuse, smoke started coming from the vents on the power supply. The only conclusion I could come to was that the track, which is Ferrador and magnabraid, is now a few years old. On occasions the braid which has been secured with double sided tape,has lifted off the rebates they are in and they then need to be re glued. Why sections of braid come loose still isn't clear, maybe the tape is getting old, maybe model magnets are too strong? Maybe the treatments that people use on their tyres and braids is soaking through the braid and softening the glue on the double sided tape, but, for what ever reason, the braid is coming loose.

Now multiply this by four lanes and several locations and we have a network of loose spots around the track. Slot it and Sideways cars, and all cars using Slot.it chassis, have the magnets protruding from the chassis base. When the model passes over loose braid, the braid is pulled against the underside of the model, causing the magnet to short out the tapes. Now multiply this by the number of lanes (four in this case), and for each lap of the race there are continuous shorts around the track. This will eventually blow the main fuse, or if the fuse is over rated, cause the transformer to overheat!! One good way of seeing how loose your magnabraid is, is to run a Slot-it model with the room lights down. If there are sparks from under the model while lapping, then the problem could well have started.

Your only option is to regularly test your track for loose braid. I have done this with a magnet stuck to the end of an engineers steel rule. Moving this around the track will see the loose sections lift up and stick to the rule. If you are having problems with older magnabraid tracks blowing fuses, it may well be this. For newer tracks, avoid proprietary lubricants and treatments getting onto the braid and double sided tape wherever possible!
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