Sorry, this is going to be a long entry! My name is Donald and I’ve been lurking here for the last couple of weeks looking for info on how to make Hot Wheels cars as fast as possible, in preparation for a tournament my local church was having. I must say your suggestions were a great help, but I was left very puzzled by the final results as I will outline below.
I found some info that said a 2006 Hot Tub w/FTE’s was known to be really fast, so I bought one off eBay really cheap. I also hit the local Sam Walton retailer and found a Ferrari 458, Ford Mustang and 86 Delorian all w/FTE’s. I also grabbed a van w/regular wheels and a random car w/FTE’s to scavenge and use on the van. With about 5 days until the competition, I bought a Dremel and withdrew to my secret underground lair for an hour or two each night.
First mod was the Delorian since it was the lightest and I figured slowest of the FTE cars so if I ruined it, no big deal. This car started out at about .8 oz and after adding clay, I got it to 1.3 oz. I tinted the windows (spray painted) to conceal my secrets from other competitors. Froze the axles, reassembled, and dry graphite lubed the wheels.
Next up was the Ferrari, did all same mods except I included some small steel bolts toward the back end of the car. This car started at 1.4 oz and after mods it was 2.3 oz! Also tinted windows and graphited (is that a word?) the wheels.
Next was the Hot Tub. I must say, this car is heavy stock and there isn’t much room to add weight. It is all metal chassis and body except for the hot tub portion. I took it apart and used my Dremel to “hollow out” the tub just enough to fit a stack of 6 nickels down inside. Glued the “water” colored blue plastic back over the top and reassembled. Initial weight of the car was 1.9 oz and after mods was 2.6 oz. Applied graphite, but I did notice that the car pulled a little to the right when I rolled it. Knew this wasn’t a good sign.
Last up and without as much time to work on it as I’d have liked was the van. It had a metal chassis and a plastic body, but it had tons of interior space for adding weight. I switched out the stock wheels for FTE’s, added clay, bolts and pennies until the stock weight of 1.6 oz reached 3.3 oz!
Ran out of time to try and mod the mustang and never thought to just test it stock. I had no exact specs to go on for the track, only that it was tall and sloped down consistently to the bottom and was around 20’ long. Fortunately, I was able to bring all the cars to the track and test run them against each other prior to the event starting. It was a wooden track, with 6 lanes, 5’ tall and an electronic timing system.
After 3 test runs, the Ferrari was smoking the other 3, it was a real dive bomber! The truck was next, followed by the Hot Tub which as I predicted, kept bumping the wall. And last was the Delorian which was just too light and got really squirrely as it crossed over the connecting sections of the track.
After my initial tests, the track operator offered to turn on the timing system so I could see just how fast the Ferrari’s speeds were. The first run was 3.704 seconds, to which he replied, “Whoa”! I ran it again and after a flawless run, the clock showed 3.620. The operator said, “I’ve been doing this all over this region and I’ve NEVER seen a car go that fast on this track”! I was stoked!
Now the heat races begin and my car……..er I mean my daughter’s car is in the first race. The Ferrari posted a 3.81 and beat the next fastest car by 3 car lengths. The time difference didn’t really bother me since it was the class of that heat and bumped the wall out of the starting gate. 50 or so more 1st and 2nd graders watched their cars compete with none of them getting below 4 seconds.
The next round is up and the Ferrari now in a different lane wins its heat again, this time posting a 3.92. It still won by a car length and was competing against faster cars due to re-seeding, but I was getting concerned about the time difference.
Soon it was time for the finals. The Ferrari drew the same “slower” lane again and somehow finished 4th posting a 4.191! My 7 year old daughter shrugged her shoulders and ran to play with some friends and I was standing there devastated! How in the world could that car run over a half second slower in only 7-8 trips down the track? My first thought was that some of the clay, etc. from the mods was rubbing the wheels and caused the slow-down, but when I got the car back, it seemed fine. Only one other car the entire night ran a sub-4 sec. run (3.997) and that run wasn’t even in the finals. The real dagger in the heart was the winner was another FTE Ferrari 458 that the kid’s dad picked up on the way to the race! It was completely stock and won with a 4.09 finals.
Any of you experience decreasing speeds over the course of a tournament like this? I must say this was a blast to do, both my daughter and I enjoyed it, but I can’t seem to get over the loss as fast as she did! I would appreciate any thoughts you may have and I plan to post pics of the mods shortly.