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Controller selection help

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  • Controller selection help

    Picked up an analog Carrera set recently.

    Want to replace the factory “plunger style” analog Carrera controllers with a trigger style. Looking at the Professor Motor 35-ohm model reviewed here – I see there is an electronic model (Carrera Home Set) for a little more.

    I’m a part time rug racer – so I don’t want anything to elaborate. Track is small and flat – cars will mostly be at this point.

    I think the analog Carrera controllers are around 60 ohms – and from what I’ve read might be a bit high anyway for the motors and 35 ohms may be better suited to them.

    Does the PM electronic controller automatically adjust to each car it sees on the track (i.e. how does it work)? What is the advantage of going electronic?

  • #2
    I have not used the 35 ohm controllers and I’m sure they work great but I would recommend the electronic controllers because there operating principal is opposite of the resistor type
    The resistance in the 35 ohm is a constant so different cars will run with different results, some will run better and smoother while others might be touchy and sensitive on a smaller track
    The electronic controllers will operate more consistently with a wide variety of different cars because they apply the voltage to the track in a more linear and smoother fashion which would be more desirable on a shorter track
    I had 35 ohm controllers on my small oval and they worked just fine but have since changed to PM electronic controllers and everyone noticed a difference in drivability no matter what type of car you are driving
    I would highly recommend the electronic controllers over a resistor controller for slotit on your track
    Peterborough Ont


    • #3
      Agree with above.

      But, ANYTHING will be an upgrade over what you have.

      Being a "rug racer" part time, the 35 OHM would be a low cost sweet spot for you. I have two and like them very much.

      But he is right. if you want REAL improvement, spring for the electronic


      • #4
        PM also offers a 45 ohm controller with the Carrera home set plugs. Perhaps a 45 ohm controller might be more to your liking as far as being closer to the stock Carrera controller.
        BRS Hobbies - Online shopping for slot cars in all scales, RC crawlers & more!


        • #5
          If possible get the PM electronic controllers with Carrera plugs on them. I bought 2 over 12 years ago with Scalextric's plugs and still use them with my routed tracks - controllers and adjustable power supply plug into the power base under the track and jumper wires connect to the power rails (copper tape in my case). They work great and have been a good investment.

          Also hope you can get your track off the rug. Any sort of table will be a huge improvement. A hollow core door on saw horses, something that folds down from the wall, etc. When I remember rug racing it makes my knees hurt.


          • #6
            I agree on the PM electronic, very smooth with about any car
            the 35 ohm is good, but you can notice the difference right away between the 2

            I should get another electronic next month to replace the lone 35 I have left


            • #7
              Thanks to everyone for the help - picked up an electric.


              • #8
                Originally posted by GoldGuy
                Does an electronic controller allow me to run HO through to 1/24 with wild to mild motors using the adjustment features so that the 'gas petal' has a proportional feel?
                So far I've run pretty much everything except HO and have no issues. Good proportional control
                I do not own any HO


                • #9
                  There are a couple of factors that make it difficult to design an electronic controller that would be perfect for both 1/32nd and HO cars. One factor would be the differences in track voltage. 1/32nd tracks where cars without traction magnets are run are usually at 10 volts. 1/32nd tracks where cars with traction magnets are used are usually run at 12-14 volts. HO tracks are usually run at 18-20 volts, although gravity cars are run at 12 volts for the most part. Another factor is the brake adjustment that the controller has. 1/32nd controllers usually have a 25 ohm potentiometer in the brake circuit. An HO controller would have a much higher value potentiometer, perhaps 100 to 200 ohms. Many HO cars are best run with no brakes and high performance cars need coast, in which case the voltage is not zero when the trigger is in the off position.
                  Most of the time you would be better off using a controller that is made for a specific scale. There may be a controller that has enough adjustability to work well with both scales, but off hand there is none that I could recommend.


                  • #10
                    Did you mean a 2110 PM controller?
                    With a resistor the current that a car's motor draws goes through the resistor. Since the voltage drop of a resistor is proportional to the ohm value and the current the same controller will not work the same with motors that draw different amounts of current. An electronic controller that uses a transistor does not have an ohm value as such. The voltage output of the transistor is controlled by a voltage divider that can consist of a chain of small resistors connected to a wiper pad or a potentiometer. The current drawn by the car's motor goes through the transistor, not the resistors or the potentiometer, that is why an electronic controller works well with any sort of motor. With electronic controllers the bigger concern is the track voltage.
                    The 2110 includes adjustable sensitivity and brakes. What the sensitivity adjustment actually does is control the voltage that you get at the very beginning of the trigger pull. Once you set the sensitivity you will probably use the same setting for all of your cars. Be aware that electronic controllers are sensitive to track polarity, that is because a transistor can only conduct in one direction. Set type tracks are all negative polarity, except for Policar. Club tracks are almost always positive polarity. Make sure that you order the correct polarity controller unless you want to rewire your track. The 2119 controller is made for a negative polarity track and it has a sensitivity adjustment, but no brake adjustment. Electronic controllers often do not work with a track that does not have brake connections.
                    If you expect that you might hold formal races on your track it would be best to wire it for positive polarity and have driver's stations with screw post connections.