“ Brand: Scalextric / Type: Micro scalextric set „
I was a bit of a funny girl when I was younger and always asked for the boys toys and a scalectrix was one of my favourite toys. When I had my little boy it was one of the things I couldn't wait to get him when he was old enough.
One Christmas my grandmother ordered this from her catalogue for him for Christmas. This works in the same way that the car tracks do but with a twist which was very good.
This is a winding track that homer is on one skateboard and bart is on the other and you race them around the track to see who wins. It is very funny because homer is lying down on his board and bart is riding it as normal which is like the actual show. The track crosses over and goes up in the air at one end. The controllers plug into the track one red and one yellow. I wasn't sure which one worked what in the beginning and still have to test it now to ensure which child is which. The part that goes up in the air has a cardboard stand to help hold it up and in one part there is a cardboard tunnel that covers part of the track. This is about a metre in length and half a meter wide when assembled so enough room is needed.
This is very easy to construct. Each piece clips together and the best thing about this is that it doesn't fall apart very easy, I have found that I am able to pull this along the floor without it falling apart. The skateboards are already as one piece but if the little fibres on the bottom wear out then you can change them to new ones that are supplied this is very simple to do too. The controllers have a pin that plug into the holes on one of the track pieces that has the charge station. Each controller takes 2 aa batteries.
This was a nightmare at first and the skateboards kept coming off the track when we fiddled a little with the little fibres we found a way that it would work better as get more enjoyment out of the toy. We have now used both sets of fibres so this no longer works and I do not know where to get anymore from to fix it but it is still sitting in the cupboard waiting to be used.
This cost £50 and I think it was worth the money. The track is very good quality and so are the controllers and skateboards. The only problem is the cardboard doesn't hold the end up very well so the skateboards tend to come off the end we solved this by finding something stronger to hold the end up better. The controllers are easy to use and they are a meter long so younger children don't tend to tug at them in over excitement. It is easy to put together which is great and my son was able to do this without instructions after playing with it a few times. I think this is good quality and makes a change to cars around a track due to my son is more interested in the Simpson's than he is in cars.
Having had 2 girls, I was slightly disappointed I'd have to do the doll thing (boring) all I wanted to buy was toy cars and boys toys, a damn site more interesting if you ask me. So ten years after my second daughter was born, you can imagine my joy when my son was born. Boys toys at last.
Going back a good few years I bought my son a scalextric set, it was the "My first Scalextric" now I was going to review that but I decided against it as it's so basic, so instead I decided to review this "Simpsons Scalextric" that I bought him some time later.
A little about Scalextric
The Scalextric company is owned and distributed by Hornby although when they first appeared in the late 1950's they were known as a creation of "British Firm Minimodels". Being known as slot car racing sets in the beginning, the scalextric cars were metal and the tracks were rubber compound, the cars and track were later changed to plastic as this was easier and cheaper to mould.
Many different duel sets have been produced over the years, including super cars, racing cars and novelty cars. they also introduced micro scalextric, where the cars were so many scales smaller.
In 2004 they introduced the Scalextric Sport Digital which incorporated 4 car racing, which needed special digital tracks. The old style cars would only work on these tracks if a digital chip was placed inside them, although the digital cars would still work on normal track. In 2010 they went a step further and introduced 6 car racing. The 6 car digital powerbase C7042 which includes a separate screen to measure lap times and other racing information, was something the customers wanted and they were only to happy to oblige.
As there as so many different scalextric sets available, I decided as it was a novelty set I was reviewing I'd note down some of the other Novelty /TV/Film sets, these currently include:
Micro Scalextric Disney Pixar Toy Story
Micro Scalextric My Sims Racing
Micro Scalextric Need for Speed Micro
Micro Scalextric Scalextric Disney Pixar World of Cars
James Bond 007
Top Gear Powerlaps
Need for Speed
The Simpsons Scalextric Skate board Chase
The skateboards and figures
This set is different to the others as it is not cars that race, but skateboards. Homer and Bart simpson have their own skateboard, one red, one green, Homer is set in a lying on his front position, clinging onto his red skateboard for dear life, Where as Bart stands confidently arms outstretched on his pale green skate board. Both skateboards and simpson figures are plastic and measure around 3 and a half inches in length. Homer and his board stand about 2 inches high while Bart and his board stands almost 3 inches high. Underneath the skateboards are the wire brushes that brush along the metal strips of the track, along with four little rubber wheels, making the skateboard look convincingly real. None of the figures come off of the skateboards the figure and skateboard is just one piece.
The track comes in 11 bright yellow plastic pieces of various different shapes and sizes, some of the track pieces sport red areas (dangerous) placed around the track, these all slot together to make a 49 by 25 inch racing track, with one end raised and held up by a decorated cardboard support. Another decorated cardboard piece is included that acts as a bridge that they skateboard under. One of the track pieces has the power box attached to enable the controllers to be plugged in.
Two controllers are included, one red, one yellow. These are about 7 inches long and are made of plastic, slightly curved, a bit like an old telephone hand piece, very light and easy to hold with a grey trigger placed underneath, in just the right position for the index finger to press when desired. With a wire that is about 77 inches long which has the jack on the end of it, to connect it to the power box on the track.
The Hornby transformer
The transformer is the thing that gives you the power to the scalextric set. This is a black plastic box that is very heavy as it holds all the components needed to power the scalextric, It is basically a giant plug/adapter with a very long wire attached and a jack on the end to plug into the power box on the track.
All these things, along with a decorated plastic sheeting that's printed with a template of the track, that's used as a guide, as to how and where to put the track, make up the The Simpsons Scalextric Skate board Chase Racing Set.
lay out the plastic sheeting, build up the track by slotting the track pieces together, there are pictures to show how this is done, plug in the transformer and connect the other end into the power box, a red light should come on, then connect your controllers into the power box, place your skateboards on the track side by side, making sure the wire brushes underneath the skateboards are straight and in place with the metal strip on the track, then press the trigger on your controller and your away, the harder you press the faster you go.
For children aged 5+ this set can be purchased from Amazon, currently from £20.00
I bought this for my son when he was about 6 years old. It is very easy to assemble, although I don't think a child could do this alone and there's also the plug to think about so I decided that supervision was best whilst my son played with this toy. There is only one set way that this scalexrtic can be assembled, where as with various other sets I know you can play around with the track and design your own. My husband made a track from both the "Simpsons set" and the "my first scalextric set" by combining both sets tracks together, this was fun making the track twice the size, both the Simpsons characters and the cars worked on this specially made up track.
The Simpsons skateboard chase has provided my son with many hours of entertainment, him always bagging to be Bart, while anyone else who plays has to take on Homer. We've played various different games with this set, we have played a time trial game where we take it in turns to send the skateboards round one at a time, to see how many laps each of us can do before the skateboard zooms off the track. We've played a game where we start at the same time and try our hardest to knock the other off the track when they pass the tricky (red) parts of the track. There's three red areas on the track, one where you start, another, part the way round where the two slots on the track veer very close together, and another red area on the round, raised part of the track where more often than not, if both skateboards are passing that area at the same time, one of them is guaranteed to fall off.
It has been good fun to play, but this proved quite difficult when we adopted our eldest dog, she seems to have a fascination for toy cars whether scalextric style cars or otherwise. When we put the skateboards on the track to start, she's ready to pounce and catch them, barking at them as they whizz past. If she got hold of one of them that was the end of the game, as she wouldn't give the skateboard back easily. So needless to say the Simpsons skateboard chase skalextric set was played with less and less, until eventually it was packed away and stored in my son's bedroom. My son got older and the scalextric set has gradually been forgotten.
I decided to review the Simpsons skateboard chase scalextric set because I've been clearing away a lot of my son's old toys and came across it, it is still in great condition, despite the dog running off with the skateboards half the time. The box is a bit battered and worn but it does still work, as I set it up and tried it out, since I was reviewing it. The picture I've included is of the contents of the box because it didn't even cross my mind to take a picture of the set all made up (brainless I know) it wasn't until I'd packed it all away that I realized I never took a picture while it was set up.
With everything, there usually come some downsides. As with a lot of scalextric sets, things don't always go to plan the first time you put the car on the track. Ideally you would set it up, place your cars, skateboards or whatever your set happens to be racing, you'd plug in your transformer, pull the trigger and you'd be away. However this wasn't the case for us when we first tried to use the Simpsons skateboard chase scalextric set, the power was working fine because the red power light was on, however once the skateboards were put in place, pressing the trigger on the controllers didn't make the cars move, we double checked the wire brushes underneath the skateboards, they seemed to be fine, so we found ourselves taking the track apart and checking each individual piece. On finding nothing amiss with the track we reassembled it and checked the power box, where the transformer and controllers were plugged in. We found the connection to the power and the controllers was ok. After unplugging from the power, my husband then checked inside the controllers where he found something had come slightly loose inside each of them and was stopping the controllers from working, this was easily sorted out and made safe. Then all was ready to go again, this time the scalextric worked like a dream. We never had any problems with the controllers after that.
I could have complained about the loose wiring, but I didn't feel it necessary, I guessed it was a one off, as scalextric are usually very good with the set up and design of their sets. I did however get in touch with the company about it, just to make them aware of what had happened. They assured me quality checks are always carried out and offered to exchange the scalextric set, I was quite happy with the one we had I knew it was safe now and was working fine, so I told them there was no need. It hasn't deterred me from wanting to purchase their scalextric sets in the future, I appreciate that it was indeed just a one off.
So aside from that little setback in the beginning, we have had no problems at all with this scalextric set, and it had continued to be used until my son felt he wanted something a bit bigger and better. We have since purchased a bigger more powerful set, and as long as we hold the dog back, we can all continue to play with the scalextric set.
This is a perfect little set for starting your child off on the road of scalextric, being a novelty set makes it more appealing to the younger child, The Simpsons never seem to fail to impress most children. So don't let our little set back put you off, this really is a tough little set that I'm sure your children would get many hours of entertainment out of, as my son did.
I'm giving the Simpsons Skateboard Chase 4 stars because of the little mishap in the beginning, otherwise it would have easily got 5 stars from me.
Thank you for reading my review which is also posted on Ciao