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Lee

Braid Or Tape

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Gday Marty,

Firstly welcome to the forum, great bunch of knowledgble blokes here, regarding the profile of your rails, I think flat braid would be a better choice for the application if only for the reason that it provides more contact area for the cars brushes as opposed to round rod or tube. You also have another choice int he braid which is magna braid which is what I have chosen to lay in my routed track which provides the ability for magnet in cars to be used for the kids ( and the big kids).

 

Cheers

Rob

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If you can afford it do it with braid every time.

I have had both success with copper tape and failures (mostly success). If the track is flat on one piece of MDF then tape lifting should not be much of a problem as there will be little or no movement in the track as a whole. If the track is to have ups and downs there will be movement with temp changes and that will cause grieve of the first order. Braid is flexible so will move with the track both in and out. Tape will just lift :^( The last track I did with tape was however an utter failure as I thought I would be smart and use tinned copper tape ( the stuff used on mirrors for leadlighting) looked good when finished but most probabley due to movement in the track lifted all the time especially round the then banking. On the flat pit section never lifted once. The stuff cost twice the price of normal tape and last half as long

 

Another issue is the tape has to be kept very clean in order to get good contact due to its smooth surface and will tarnish which also buggers up conductivity. Braid due to the fact is isn't a smooth surface rather its a whole mass of small braided wires thereby making the surface lumpy ( alright they are very small lumps but you know what I mean) dirt and dust between uses is not a great drama plus cars can't tear braid on the corners unlike tape

 

I've used Hartland in the past ( I think when they had an office in Vic) and they gave good service. Both Mobile Raceways and Armchair racer stock track braid.

 

As for sticking the braid down - I have just braided my new track and used a 3M product called '9672' which is like a rolled adhesive. comes in 55m rolls and looks like double sided tape but sticks to your fingers like snot ( sorry can't think of anything better to associate it with). We used similar on the Phillip Island track (where the track suffers from very extreme temperature changes) . This stuff is a tad more 'agressive' to use the 3m speak. Armchair also stocks this.

 

I braided the whole track (21m by 3 lanes) in 4 hours from go to finish. Would have been quicker but I was using the braid from my old track which the Christmas Light fairy had got at ( you know like the christmas lights on trees - doesnt matter how neatly you put them away - when you get them out next christmas the lights are ALWAYS a tangle mass)

 

The 3M product is brillient stuff

 

Braiding a track is actually easier to do than taping as you just use the braid rebate to line the braid up as you go. But you MUST rebate for the braid.

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And just to add my 3.76 denaari to what Aastes said, people have tried things like galvanised wire, copper tube etc, and found them just TOO difficult to set up. Remember, copper will still tarnish in humid areas too, so anything will require some maintenance.

 

Braid on the other hand was absurdly easy to lay, I'm a tool-bunny, I make Tim Taylor look like Al; but I managed a braided track just fine.

 

The car braids, tyres etc dont rip it, it's very robust.

 

It can eb cleaned with a rag dabbed in a mild solvent, but don't verdo the solvent, as any seeping through the braid to the cement will gradually over time attack the 3M glue, F2, double sided tape, or whatever you happen to have used to stick the brid down.

After doining one routed track in each, I consider copper tape to be an amusing "history lesson" into "the bad ol' days" :D :D :D

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Forgive my ignorance guys,

 

But is Braid and Magnabraid two different things? Does Magnabraid have magnetic properties, or is it just that magnets are attracted to it (like a fridge door :) ), can braid be made of other conductive material (such as copper) which isn't conductive?

 

Is there a difference? What about price?

 

Just something I need to know to lock away in the knowledge bank for a possible future project...in a galaxy far, far away...etc

 

Thanks,

 

DaveH

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With all this talk of braid I just thought I'd let you all know I have some stainless steel braid for sale anyone interested

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Ferrodore was developed in the sixties as a protective coating for steel structures. It is very abrasive and gives good grip with some tyres,personally I think tyres have developed to a stage where they will give reasonable grip on most surfaces. I really like the look of Ferrodore but don't like the abrasive surface that is why the surface on "New Warwick Farm" appeals to me,the look of Ferrodore but the surface of normal paint.

You should be able to by braid cheaper than copper tube and a lot less work. The idea of using Coax shield is not new. I raced on a track years ago there this had been used,the guy was an installer so had plenty.I looked at it for my track but was just too lazy to strip it all. I would remove the inner so the braid will lay flat and about 6mm wide. Tinned or copper does not make any difference. Peter at Mobile Raceways can supply tinned braid at a good price so check with him before you start.

 

Phil

Given the choice go for the tinned copper , I have had the plain copper and after a while it starts to tarnish, no loss of power though! But the tinned copper looks better longer.I am in the process of building a new track now and will be using the tinned copper with contact cement glue to hold it down. Do not use the waterbased glue as I have heard it is unreliable

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But is Braid and Magnabraid two different things

 

Yes. Braid is either tinned copper or copper BUT magna braid is magnetic,I am not sure of the cost differance but Magna braid is a lot more expensive. Tinned braid is often cheaper that plain copper,BUT the tinning will wear thu over time.

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I am about to order Magnabraid and was seeking opinions of those who have Magnabraid or normal braid: Which widht 3/16 or 1/4 inch is preferable? I like the look of 3/16 aesthetically but does this result in problems with car braids?

 

Kind Regards

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I would only ever use tape again if cost were a concern. If not, I will always use braid! I am by no means experienced but my last track had copper and was the main reason for selling it. It is ok under normal conditions but I had a social race night a few months back and the middle lane had lost power. Needed to go around the track with a multimeter to find the break and the solder the 2 dead ends together. Also, on hot days the tape tends to lift and expand which needs to be re-buurnished. Not a problem with braid. Just my 2 cents worth!

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i haven't had an issue with it lifting yet and it has been hot. I can recommend going to bunnings and getting a $2 50mm rubber caster to use for burnishing.

 

works a treat

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are the views on braid vs tape still the same that tape is not worth while doing ?

 

Mine hasn't changed...if you have your track in a space with constant temperature( indoors) tape should be fine but we have winter and summer over here and day and night too!

 

Braid is a hassle to install but worth it.

 

regards

Edited by munter

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My track is a three lane routed mdf track with Plasti Dip surface and Venture purple core copper tape.

 

It is our home track largely for our own playing and has been in use about two years. I have patched a couple places in that time. My track is modular, built in five sections. That meant a lot of power taps. I wouldnt do that again. Build it as one piece.

 

If I were doing it over, I would go with tinned braid and I would use the adhesive tape to put it down. For what I spent making my track modular, power taps and the cords..... I could have done braid.

 

I am happy with my copper tape, the conductivity is amazing, it stays clean, it's easy to repair or stick down if you do get a small place coming up.

 

I should point out, my track is indoors in a finished basement, temperature and humidity controlled. Year round variation is from 68 degrees f to 71 degrees f. humidity who knows, but it varies a bit even though we run dehumidifier in the summer, winter, it's drier than a popcorn fart.

 

I read a post where the guy used .5 inch wide copper tape. After taping the track, he masked off the center .25" of tape and then painted his track. With plasti dip like my track, this would be amazing as the tenacity of plasti dip would really keep that outer edge of the tape protected.

 

Neat idea, and thats what it's all about, learning from one another.

 

I know there is a group of guys here in the states that are sourcing braid pretty cheap. OK, well, all things being relative. sounds like the Oz connection is doing the same thing.

 

best of luck,

 

j

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it's drier than a popcorn fart.

Guess its pretty dry then...

regards

 

two of the funniest things I have read on here in a while...

 

never heard of a popcorn fart...

and John your reply is priceless

 

DM

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t's drier than a popcorn fart.

Johnny,

Just how dry is a popcorn fart? Is it drier than a dead dingo's donger?

 

Sorry, HL's question, not mine.

 

On that note, I think it's well past beer-o'clock.

Cheers

Embs

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Hi.

 

Just finished building new 3 lane 20metre track. Apart from extra router pass needed to recess braid found braid a real treat. Hardest part was getting the 3M double sided tape around the sharper corners but braid just flowed on after that. Make sure however you do not stretch in corners as it needs to be able to expand and contract. Braid just about lays itself and will assume whatever curve is required by just gently leading it around the corners. You do need to get tape and then braid down right first time however as tape is super sticky. Also make sure you have tape completely smooth (single layer with no lumps) as these will create lump in braid. If you get any of these it is best to just cut out that section of tape and insert a small piece in gap. Have found braid provides absolutely smooth power all around the track. Because our track is built to split into two pieces it has power taps at all the joins but advice I had was that for up to 80 feet a single tap for each lane was sufficient.

 

Think it is a bit of a no brainer but certainly braid was not cheap. I cost us about $300 for our track for tape and braid but we think it was worth it.

 

We used 6mm braid purchased from SlotsNZ.

 

Good luck with whatever choice you make.

 

Regards

 

Chas Le Breton

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Chas, a tip for next time. Use contact glue and the lump problem under the braid doesn't happen. Pics?

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After having tape on the first Shelmore track for 10 years and putting up with the constant hassles, I Am glad I invested in braid 3 years ago for the "new" track. No problems at all.

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Our track in Sturt runs well with braid and blackboard paint. Another glossier surface was tried on the recommendation of another racer but it was a disaster. Has been painted over again with blackboard paint but some issues with that still and needs more coats to cover. When it is humid the glossy parts still showing through the blackboard get greasy.

 

A nice blackboard surface has just the right grip/slide effect in my opinion. I've tried racing on ferradore and didn't like it much. Not nice if you land on your roof either.

 

In the Adelaide climate I'd say blackboard/braid is a good combo and when you find something that works stick with it. Having lived in Canberra I'd say the climate there is about the same but a little drier. Not sure how the dry July cold would effect the surface. Weather seems to be changing these days anyway ... one of the wettest years I remember

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A little FYI many of you may have already heard.

 

There is no Magnatech braid available, other than what's in stock at retailers, and won't be for the forseeable future. Jim is having issues with a supplier demanding he order very large quantities of material which he cannot do. As Jim doesn't seem to be answering emails at the moment it's difficult to know what's happening but fingers crossed he gets it sorted.

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