What is Total Control Racing?
Drive, accelerate, pass & slide back in front and just in Front of your Opponent!
But Watch out for the jam vehicle! Criss-crosses, up-and-over bridges, obstacle barrels and a myriad of other specialty items came with most sets.
Although we remember it very fondly, maybe a bit better than it actually worked, the TCR race system always seemed to pose one minor problem or two. Mainly it's downfall was the "stall". Zooming down a straight, banging in a corner or sliding through an s-curve, a mid-lane, mid-move, mid-pass, then stall
... It really slowed racing down. A clean, warm, tight track helped, but few kids could afford or figure out the solution.
TCR is an AC powered system, rather than the typical DC power of slotted race sets. AC power is what allows you to switch lanes. It demands an output of Amperage in AC current of at least 2 AMPs. A Variable-Volt, Variable-Amp Power Source is just the ticket to allow a racer to 'dial-in' a set of cars. One power for two cars, boost of power if you add a JAM car & even more power as you enlarge the system. Often well over $100, it is the cost of a truly successful TCR race system. The addition of dependable, variable power is nearly as important as power distribution over a tightly connected track. Large or small system, a second power pack arrangement or under-the-track-wire-jumpering system is needed for dependable, even power around the track circuit.
The TCR (TotalControlRacing) Logo has been used on 6 or 7 different systems by TYCO, IDEAL & MAJORETTE throughout the past 3 decades. Majorette of France is the current owner of the Trademark: TCR. TYCO Industries of N.J. & Ideal Toys of America, alternately licensed the 'TCR' moniker for their North American release, of the Total (Lack of) Control Racing Systems. Although each HO Slotless, Passing System could be Made-to-Work, there was always a precious balance between Really Fun Racing, and… - Stalled - Cars. A Sufficient increase in the Power Pack Amperage Really seemed to help. A Super Clean, well-connected Track is a Must! Ideal started it all back in the early 1970's. This racing system, which ended after only a few years, is still played with today. the old cars were iffy, but new rear rubber tires help. later issue Majorette TCRs should also run on this system. TYCO released Command-Control in the 1970's to compete with the, equally bad Aurora Ultra5 system. both systems were much less useable than the Ideal system. Later, Both Aurora (with their Speed-Steer System) & TYCO (with the Newly Branded TYCO TCR) released updated systems. Both are equally good systems & are overall the best TCR Racing systems released. Although the Tracks themselves do not interchange, most other components do.
TCR Slot Cars Interchange InformationAre the Ideal TCR and Tyco TCR HO systems compatible? What about Tyco Command Control? Ultra5? Any stuff available currently? How about Majorette TCR? Where can I get replacement tires / parts?
No, the Ideal TCR and Tyco TCR HO slotless slot car tracks are not compatible with one another. Tyco only licensed the TCR name for their updated line of Command Control track for the early 1990s. The stuff is now discontinued but can still be found fairly cheaply. A local hobby shop can order replacement cars and parts from REH Distributing. They also have some older slotless racing parts available from Aurora and Ideal. AJ's Gum Drops Silicone tires are larger and great for the Ideal TCR cars. Online shops such as www.radtrax.com should have some items as well if you do not live near a local shop that can custom order items for you.
Tyco basically took their Command Control track and added updated controllers and curve pieces with dividers to keep the cars in the same lane because of centrifugal force. The Tyco TCR track is gray with dashed white line and the old Command Control track is black. Majorette TCR tried to come back to the US market using some old and new Ideal bodies with a new type of HO slot car chassis and track. The track is similar to the slotted Ideal type from the Dukes of Hazzard set with some updated pieces. The chassis had a large guide pin which was not able to work in standard HO track and you could not easily replace it with a standard pin. They only lasted a year here :(
Aurora Ultra5 and SpeedSteer track is the same except for the cars and terminal track sections. For most of the stuff, try places like www.ebay.com to get the older slotless cars and tracks, etc.
Some TCR Vehicles will interchange between one manufacturer, & another's racetrack systems. Other than Aurora SpeedSteer & Aurora ULTRA5 Track Systems Interchanging; Seldom do different-track-systems interchange. The 1980s Aurora SpeedSteer & 1990's TYCO TCR Vehicles are nearly identical. An updated feature of the new systems was the ability to make most cars Left or Right Lane, simply by moving the pick-up shoes. You can interchange TYCO TCR & Aurora SpeedSteer Pickup Shoes, springs, rear wheels, tires gears & axles. Both vehicles work (or don't) on either system. A dedicated JAM Vehicle is still utilized right into the 1990's. No Adapters are known to convert from one Track System to another.Edit
Tyco TCR Chassis
- 6391 Motor and Chassis assembly for the "A" car
- 6392 Motor and Chassis assembly for the lighted "A" car
- 6394 Motor and Chassis assembly for the "B" car
- 6395 Motor and Chassis assembly for the lighted "B" car
- 6386 Front Tires (sold in pairs) for the passing car
- 6387 Pick-up Shoes and Springs (sold 4 per package) with Tool
- 6495 Rear Tires (sold in pairs) for the passing car
If you are looking to purchase TCR parts or sets, you should buy the matching brand vehicle for your Slot-Free racing system. Once you get it running well, then introduce another manufacturers vehicles to see how they may operate. Tweak the vehicle pickups, where you can. Most of the 'passing or JAM' vehicles work on the same principles. The size & distance between Pick Up Shoes, and chassis bumper dimensions, seem to be the biggest variations. Also, the system used to keep-the-vehicle-off-the-wall varied widely. Aurora Ultra 5 was released in the 1970's, and the Later Improved SpeedSteer System, followed into the 1980's. TYCO TCR also released Command Control System early on, which was a total catastrophe… The later TYCO iteration took on the TCR logo & actually was a good attempt at a modern-day TCR Racing System by advancing the Aurora SpeedSteer technology. The Ideal Toys, 1970's release system, had a MK 1 & MK II Chassis-Style released in the U.S. Majorette subsequently released a MK III & MK IV Style chassis in Europe. Modern Majorette TCR works well on 1970's Ideal TCR Systems, each was a successive improvement upon the other. North American MK 1 & MK II 'Metal Rear Hubbed Style' can use an Aurora #8741 Medium Rear Tire with good results for the often-dried rear ends. Reproduction pickup shoes & other tune up parts, are also becoming much more available. The best track layouts from a functional perspective, is an oval or a figure eight (or even a double figure 8!) Road Courses, unfortunately, leave too many areas that are prone to stalling.