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Slotcar exhibition in Balingen: 100 years of Carrerabahn and Co.

Franz-Peter Hudek
Slotcar exhibition in Balingen
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D he heyday of the electric car racetracks in Germany began 1963, when Carrera presented its 'Universal' rail system based on the English model. The invention with the slot in the roadway in which a guide pin (later a guide keel) kept the little speedsters on the runway came from England.

Scalectrix and Carrera - the idea came from England, the boom from Germany

There the revolutionary system with the guide groove (English: slot) and the racing cars only fixed at the front so that the fast drivers could now drift. Until then, the cars, for example from Märklin in the thirties, were guided at the front and back on a rail that protruded from the center of the roadway.

Due to the success of Carrera Universal, a real one broke out in Germany in the mid-sixties Racetrack boom. The tired model railway in HO was, it seemed at the time, written off by the modern, car-loving children. In addition to Carrera, many other German manufacturers offered racing tracks on a scale of 1:32, some also in 1:24: Gama, Stabo Car, Faller, Fleischmann Auto Rallye and Märklin Sprint. Then there were Revell from the USA and of course Scalextric from England.

Model railway manufacturers also want to get involved

Faller, Fleischmann and Märklin originally came from the model railroad corner, but at the time believed that slot car Having to participate in the boom. In 1963, Faller first brought the Auto Motor Sport (AMS) rail system on a slightly larger scale to supplement the model railroad. It goes without saying that all of the above-mentioned racetrack brands are represented in Balingen with numerous cars and original packs that have now achieved high fan prices, especially Carrera and Märklin Sprint.

Market leader Carrera has constantly expanded its range. Universal was supplemented by Transpo with trucks and a legendary concrete mixer. Here you could curve around on construction sites, choose branches, load and unload “concrete”. Carrera Servo in the scales 1:32, 1:60 and 1:40 offered for the first time a racetrack system without a guide keel with free lane change. Both systems can also be admired with many cars in Balingen.

But by the end of the seventies the great interest in the racetracks subsided. With the exception of Carrera and Scalextric, all other manufacturers discontinued their slot car programs. In Balingenthey can still be admired and are reminiscent of the golden, automobile-loving times of the German economic miracle. Visitors can test their racing skills on modern slot car tracks.

The exhibition runs until April 29, 2012 in the

  • Zehntscheuer , Neue Straße 59, 72336 Balingen
  • Admission two euros
  • Children up to 14 years free
  • Opening times: daily 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., closed on Mondays
  • Further information at +49 (0) 7433 9008413

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