13 August 2009

Track test of the new Slot.It F30 tires

One thing that surprised me was the release of the new Slot.It tires, using three different compounds, the F22, F25 and F30. The surprise was more on the fact that these were not an announced release, they came to the market rather quietly, and no information on the suitability of these tires was given.

Since we race on Carrera tracks, tire performance is crucial. We have long been using Slot.It P1 tires, treated with several oils (and other things that might be hazardous to health...). Slot.It has ceased production of this product, and they are hard to find on any shop throughout the world nowadays.

So, looking for other options seems to be on the order of the day. I was interested in trying these new compounds. The P1 was the harder compound of them, so I opted for the F30, which is he hardest of the three. They are sold in some quite odd dimensions. We were used to the small 19x10 mm or the bigger 20x11 mm, but these are sold on... 20x10 mm.

The lettering on the side of the tires appear to be a new style for Slot.It. And, in a very welcome adition, they refer the compound used. In the photo below you can see the "30" reference on the side:

The tires appear to have a little more mould flash than the "P" series. Dispite that fact, glueing them to a couple NSR hubs was quite easy and straightforward (for example, the newer P6 tires require more time and patience to glue). The surface come with some slight imperfections, but we know that at our scale, these are felt...

So, I decided that some truing of the surface with very fine grain sandpaper would do no harm. To my surprise... IT DID! The surface started to peel off the tire even sanding it lightly! I tried to correct it adding some lighter fuel, but the harm was done. Since they had a "sticky" feel to the touch, like it was covered with contact glue, I decided to fit them to the test car anyway and hope that after some laps, it might started to become more even.

This was the test car, a NSR Porsche 917 K, David Piper:

Right from the start, the car had a feel of riding on really hard tires - nothing strange on this, these are expected to be hard tires. That "riding on marbles" feel at the start started to decrease, so as laptimes, which started to encourage me. But it was pointless, look at the tires after a long series of laps (or 30 minutes, if you prefer):

After some running, tires seem to start working better, but midway through the stint they started to fade lightly. The best laptime was 8,7 s, nothing that special, given that this car can perform better than that.

So, I was rather disapointed with these new tires. Maybe I'll have to test them "right out of the bag" with no kind of treatment whatsoever. At least I discovered "what NOT TO do" - and now you know too!
I still believe that Slot.It should give their references to what compound suits which track brand better.

Until next time, see you soon...


  1. Hello Hugo.

    I saw the tires and I was amazed.
    They were completely mill.

    I don't believe in the quality of these tires because the track was very smooth, to have been so degraded.

    Thanks Hugo for this information.

  2. Hi Hugo

    Considering that F30 is supposed to be the hardest rubber from the 3 three compounds released in the "F Series" it's quite difficult to understand how fast it lost efficiency in such a smooth kind of track like Carrera.

    Maybe it isn't supposed to be used sand paper on it, I don't know or maybe the tire simply collected the rubber deposited on the track over the years creating that grained layer on the surface, like the Pirelli tires on the latter years of the manufactures at Formula One.

    Nevertheless great job Hugo.

    Best regards

    Pedro Correia

  3. Well, Pedro, I was not considering the fact that the tire may be removing deposited rubber from the track... there is quite some rubber attached to the bodywork of the 917, but it's very dark, almost the same color as the F30 rubber. So, I suspect it is from the tire and not the one removed from the track.

    I still have to try them not sanded. That was what caused that graining on the tires. I agree that it is not the normal degradation we expect from running on Carrera track. Even a Ninco track treats the tires harshly, but never to this point...