Slot Cars FAQS and Getting Started


Check Out All Brands of Our Slot Cars!

Check Out All Brands of Our Slot Car Track Sets!

Check Here for Technical Info for Slot Cars, Sets, and Accessories

Scroll down a little to see our Slot Car Maintenance Videos!

Just getting into slot cars? Well, I must say I can still remember when I got started and I was in the same boat as you. It can get pretty confusing, what with all the choices in brands and all. But really, it is a very straight forward hobby, and you can start enjoying it as soon as you get your new track set home! Whether you are a kid or a mom or dad, it certainly is a thrill to get that big box home and open it up, especially at the holidays!

If you are new to the hobby, and you are trying to figure out which set is best for you, we are here to help! Just scroll down the page and look over to the left. You will see our catalog categories first where you can 'shop to your heart's content'. Look a little further down the left hand side, and you will find our INFO AND FAQ's Sidebar. Now you are cooking! We have written lots of very informative articles for you on topics such as:

~ " Choosing Slot Car Sets for Kids - This Article is great if you are thinking of purchasing a set for kids only. We have slot car sets from ages 2 and up!

~ "Which is Best Analog or Digital?" is a great article if you are looking for a family or a big kid (otherwise known as adults) hobby!

~ "Choosing the Best Digital Track Set
~ "Choosing the Best Analog Track Set" are great articles to read once you decide if you think Analog or Digital is the best fit for you.

Want to watch some slot car track set videos featuring the different digital and analog track sets? We have 'em for you!

Analog Slot Car Track Videos

Digital Slot Car Track Videos

When you are ready to go shopping, all of our categories are on the top left hand side. Just click on Slot Cars and then go into Slot Car Track Sets You will see that we have our major brands of analog and digital track sets broken down into small, medium, and large layouts. There isn't a hard and fast rule as to what fits into which category, but start browsing and you will get the hang of it. We have designed these layouts and make what we call "Combo's" here at Hotslots132. We put everything you need at just the click of one button. We want to take the work out of it for you and get you racing!

Still confused? We are here to help! Give us a call, and any of us here will be glad to answer your questions and help you choose the best set for you!

Once you have figured out the basics of slot car racing, you will probably have more questions. One great thing about this hobby, is you can make it as simple or complicated as you want! So read on and maybe you can get an answer to a lot of them right here. And by the way, we also some very helpful slot car books, so you might check out these out too.

First thing we recommend to slot car guys and gals, is to grab a screwdriver and get a look under the hood! Sometimes if you are having troubles running your car, it is as simple as taking it apart and finding that an axle isn't in place properly. Check out these Slot Car Maintenance Video's listed below and you will be on your way to enjoying this great hobby for a long time to come!

Slot Car Video: Maintaining Slot Cars Demonstrating Carrera Digtal132
Slot Car Video: Maintaining Slot Cars Demonstrating SCX Digital Slot Cars
Slot Car Video: Maintaining Analog Slot Cars Demonstrating Scalextric 1/32 Analog Car

Slot Car Specific Articles (click on the article names below)
1: Breaking in new slot cars
2: Troubleshooting problems with your slot cars

Specific Questions about Slot Cars
Q: What is a 1/32 Slot car?
Q: What is the meaning of life
Q: Will all 1/32 slot cars work on any brand slot car track?
Q: Which is best, 1/24 or 1/32 slot cars and track?
Q: What about HO slot cars ?
Q: Where is the best place to buy 1/32 slot car stuff?
Q: What's the best way to get started in this hobby?

General Hobby Questions
Q: What brand of track is best?
Q: How much room do I need to have a fun 1/32 slot car layout?

Slot Car Specific Questions

Q: What is a 1/32 Slot car?
Slot Cars Comparison A: Huh? Have you been living in a cave or what? Actually, folks of a certain generation really don't know what slot cars are. I have explained the concept many a time as confused young shoppers have wandered in, eyes wide open in amazement, "you mean they actually work, I thought they were models!" Yes, the detail in modern slot cars is amazing, rivaling the most detailed die-cast model, but the great thing is we can see them actually moving, and moving fast, not just gathering dust on a shelf! Some of my customers do indeed just collect these beauties, never intending to put them on a track.

So, for my definition of slot cars: they are very nicely detailed models of a real race or street car that you would actually recognize. To us 1/32 fans, detail and accuracy of the model is important! An unrecognizable car, that just goes fast is a no-no! Oh, there's motors and gears and stuff in there too, just like a real car! The difference is the motor is electric and you stand several feet away with a controller in your hand, instead of sitting in the car with your foot on the accelerator. The more you "squeeze" the controller, the faster the car goes, let off the trigger and the car slows down. And the great thing is you don't have to steer the car, that's what the slot is for! Just think how much insurance rates would go down if that were the case in real cars! In sum, You put the car on the track, with the guide in the slot, you pull the trigger and off goes these great looking slot cars! Now you're having fun!!

To help you out with the relative size of various kinds of slot cars:
1/24 Slot Cars are approximately 7-8 inches long
1/32 Slot Cars are 5-6 inches long
1/43 Slot Cars are 3 1/2 -4 inches long
1/64 Slot Cars (called H.O. for short) are only about 2 1/2 inches long (think Matchbox cars)


Q: What is the meaning of life?
A: I have no clue!


Q: Will all 1/32 slot cars work on any brand slot car track?
A: If you are referring to ANALOG slot cars, yes, all modern, readily available ANALOG 1/32 slot cars will work just fine on all readily available ANALOG 1/32 or 1/24 home (not commercial) slot car track. Of course, if you want to run 1/24 scale cars you'll have to buy Carrera track. It is the only home track that is wide enough to accept the large 1/24 scale slot cars.

If you are thinking about DIGITAL slot cars, that is a totally different story! Please go to our INFO and FAQ section and click on Choosing a Digital Slot Car Track Set as we mentioned above, to read about digital track sets and cars. In general, though, if you buy a digital car, it will only race on that brand of track as the electronics are all different!


Q: Which is best, 1/24 or 1/32 slot cars and track?
A: It depends. There are a lot more 1/32 slot cars available as ready to run slot cars. In fact, AUTOart, Carrera, and ScaleAuto, are the only companies that make ready to run 1/24 slot cars that look realistic. And let me tell you, the cars are super-nice looking. But, with 1/24 you need a heck of a large track to really get the most enjoyment out of the 1/24 scale size. A 30' track in 1/24 scale is not as much fun as the same size track in 1/32. You need to have some room to get some nice long straightaways to get the most enjoyment from either scale. If you have a lot of room, go for 1/24th scale. If room is at a premium, 1/32 is better. Besides, even if you go the 1/24 route, you can also do 1/32 if you'd like. (All you need is a 12volt transformer for 1/32 as 1/24 takes 18 volts). Either way, dollar for dollar slot cars are the most fun and provide the most bang for your hobby buck!


Q: What about HO?
A: HO is super fast, 700+ scale miles per hour. By comparison 1/43 cars are around 500 miles per hour, and 1/32 slot cars run about 200-300 miles per hour (depending on the gearing etc..) so you can see HO cars just zip! We started carrying HO in 2010 because the new HO cars have really improved their detail and realism. We recommend them when customers are really tight on space. They can be a lot of fun folks, but if you have the room, we would always recommend the larger 1/32 scale cars and sets.


Q: Where is the best place to buy 1/32 slot car stuff?
A: What are ya, a wise guy?? Actually, I encourage you to buy locally whenever possible. We have to support our local shop owners, it's just good for him and the economy as a whole. However, many hobby shops just do not give much attention to the 1/32 slot car hobby. So, if you don't have a local shop, or if they don't really focus on slot cars, then check out our website, because we are your place! You will find our staff very knowledgeable and friendly, and we answer the phone. So, if you have ever have questions about what to buy at our shop, or questions about something you have already purchased; we stand behind the product we sell. We want all of our customers to enjoy racing as much as we do!


Q: What's the best way to get started in the hobby?
A: That's easy. Pick a brand and buy a set. All sets come with everything you need, slot cars, track and controllers. Some even come with lap counters and upgraded controllers. In fact, if you buy the biggest set available, you may never need to buy anything else, except more and more slot cars of course! If and when you decide you need to expand to a bigger layout, it is always best to buy another set. You get the best value when you buy sets. Besides, it's always a good idea to have the extra stuff because you never know when your kids or your monkey will decide to eat one of your controllers or power supplies!


General Hobby Questions

Q: What brand of track is best?
A: Well, that depends on a lot of things. Do you have kids or dogs? How about monkeys? If you have either, and they might be playing with or chewing on your slot car track, the tracks manufactured by Scalextric Sport (smooth), SCX (similar to Scalextric Sport), or NINCO (rougher) are made of a softer plastic that is less breakable than the more rigid, Carrera track. This softer track is more desirable too, if you plan on making a rally or hill-climb track. You can also bank it and make a more undulating layout with a more flexible track.

Carrera track is made of a more rigid plastic that can crack more easily if not handled properly. It is also a smooth track and is the widest, which makes it more suitable for serious racing. So in short, if you are going to have a semi-permanent or permanent layout, and you have quite a bit of room, Carrera would be a great choice. If youngsters will be using your track and it will be set up on the floor or taken apart often, consider the softer, more durable tracks by Scalextric, Ninco, or SCX.

If you want to see what some of our customers have done with slot car track sets Check out Our Slot Car Track Pics!

Again, our left hand side bar on the home page is a great source of info. Check out Choosing an Analog Track Set for more details about all the brands we carry.

If you are thinking about DIGITAL track, that is a totally different story! Please go to our INFO and FAQ section and click on Choosing a Digital Slot Car Track Set to read about digital track sets and cars. In general, one of the biggest differences with digital track sets, is that all the digital cars are chipped for that particular brand of digital set, so you can't run one brand of digital car on any other brand of digital track set. Each brand created their digital track set differently, so you need to learn about the differences in each set before you buy.

If you aren't sure if you want an analog or digital track set, we have info to try to help you out on this page: Which is Best Analog or Digital Give this a read and if you still have questions. Give us a call! 217-355-2277. We are glad to help answer any questions you have. Check out our Store Hours and Location page to see what hours we are open. This changes as we busiest during the holidays and early winter months.


Q: How much room do I need to have a fun 1/32 slot car layout?
A: Surprisingly little, to be honest. Of course, the bigger the layout the better because you can actually see just how fast your favorite car can go. In as small of a space as a ping pong or pool table, you can put together a fun, challenging layout that will keep you coming back for more! In fact, In his books , Robert Schleicher has many layout designs you can build on a 5'x9' table. So hey, you're probably not using that old ping pong table anymore right?

We have actually listed all the space required for our track sets right by the product description line so you can find the track set that suits your space the best. This is the main page for all of our track sets. We carry everything from 1/64 for those of you will the smallest spaces to 1/24 for larger room.

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