building a scalextric table

Building A Slot Car Table

While its niche, slot cars is still alive and well among a small but loyal group of hobbyists. Many still swear by the simple pleasures of slot cars, and there are even some who race competitively.

There are several slot car sets you can buy online. However, if you want to build your own Scalextric set then you are in the right place.

In this article, we will show you how to build your own Scalextric set.

How Do You Make a Slot Car Table

Building your own Scalextric set is a great way to get into the world of slot cars. It is also a great way to save money, as many of the sets you can buy online are quite expensive.

Plus, it is a fun project that you can do with your kids or grandkids. However, while it does take time to build a slot car table from scratch, it is not difficult to do.

We will walk you through every step of the process, from choosing the right materials to building the track itself.

Carrera Pedal to The Metal Porsche vs Ford 1:32 Scale Slot Car Race Set

Building A Table for Slot Cars

If you own a Scalextric slot car race track, building a Scalextric table might be a good idea instead of placing the track on the floor. This lessens the chances of people stepping on the track and damaging it.

Leaving it on the floor exposes the race track to dirt, and debris could get stuck in the track slots. This may be hard to remove and may even affect the track’s performance.

If these are on the floor, it is also easy to step on the control units, controllers, and slot cars. And, of course, some parts are hard to repair when damaged. And it can sometimes be challenging to find replacement parts as well.

In addition, placing the track on a table protects it and makes it more presentable. The table and track may be a centerpiece item in the house, depending on the construction.

A slot car race track on a table will also help create the arcade experience. Also, if you plan on holding tournaments, having the race track on a permanent surface would be better.

How To Build A Slot Car Track Table

Carrera Slot Car Set

You can always custom-build the race track table for you. However, these kinds of services may get expensive. If you have some woodworking experience, it would be better to build the table yourself.

Building a Scalextric table is easy if you only want a simple design. However, the process is very similar if you’ve ever built a table.

For this project, you’ll need the following materials and tools


  • 1 1/2” X4’X8’ plywood or chipboard
  • One ¼” X4” X8” plywood for the protective barrier
  • 8 10 2” X4’X8’ lumber
  • One 4X8 Plastic Carpet (optional)


  • Hammer
  • Hand saw, or Circular saw
  • Electric sander
  • 2” and 3” nails
  • Wood filler
  • 60-100 grit Sandpaper
  • Paint, wood stain, or varnish

There are many ways of building a slot race car table. This project follows a straightforward design and is suitable for beginners. Anyone with basic construction skills will be able to finish the project.

Instructions For Building A Slot Car Table

To build a Scalextric table for slot cars is similar to building any other table. The only difference is that you will need to ensure the surface is level so the cars can run smoothly on the track.

Construct The Legs

First, construct the table stands. Cut out the four legs from the 2×4 lumber. Each leg should measure about 25-27 inches. Some prefer higher stands, but this is a comfortable height for young players.

Next is to cut the horizontal brace for the legs. Cut about 3-3.5 inches from the 2X4’s for the horizontal brace. The legs will go under the horizontal brace. Now it’s time to assemble the two stands.

Set each leg about 6-8 inches from inside the ends of the horizontal brace. Make sure there’s even spacing between each leg under the brace. Use 2” nails to secure the brace and legs together.

For this project, the plywood board attaches to support rails. This would make it more stable.

The next step is to add the support rails to the stands. Cut two 8’ long 2X4s and two 4’ long 2X4’s. First, secure the stands onto the longer side supports. Next, use 3” nails to secure the supports to the horizontal brace of the stands.

Each stand should be about 24-27 inches from the ends of the longer supports. First, make sure to check the spacing between the stands. Next, fasten the shorter 4’ support to each end of the longer supports; use 2” nails to secure the supports in place.

To prevent further movement, add several braces all over the table legs. Then, use the remaining 2X4s for the leg brace.

Building A Slot Car Table – Add The Table Surface

Now it’s time to put the plywood over the assembly for the slot car table. Use 3-inch nails to secure the board over the supports. Make sure the sides of the board align with the table supports.

Next is to add a protective barrier or fence around the table. This barrier prevents off-track cars from falling over the table.

Cut two pieces of slats measuring 1/4” X 6” X8’ from another plywood. Then cut two more pieces measuring 1/4” X6” X8’ each. First, fasten the longer slats on the longer sides of the table. Then attach the shorter slats over the shorter sides of the table. Finally, use 2” nails to secure the slats in place.

Add wood filler to any dents and holes. After the compound dries, proceed with sanding: smooth out indentations, rough edges, and surfaces with an electric sander. You can also hand-sand hard-to-reach corners.

Clean the surfaces and apply paint or a wood finish. You can also add a plastic carpet over the board. This provides a soft landing surface for cars that go off track. You can even add custom designs and decals after completing the table.

How To Build A Scalextric Table Video

Youtube user Diamondgaffe 2.0 has a video showing how to make a Scalextric table:

What Scale is Best for Slot Cars?

The most common scales for slot cars are 1:32 and 1:24. These two sizes are widely available, but there are other options such as 1:43, 1:64, and even larger scales.

The choice of scale is a personal preference; however, the size of the track needs to be considered. A smaller-scale may be better for a smaller space, whereas a larger scale can be more impressive.

Some people also like to mix and match scales; for example, using 1:32 cars on a 1:24 track. This can be fun, but it’s important to make sure the cars will fit on the track. Otherwise, they may fly off!

Can I Paint a Scalextric Track?

If you already have a slot car track or are thinking of buying a used one, you may be wondering if you can paint it. The answer is yes!

If the track is made of plastic, you can use regular spray paint designed for plastic surfaces. Simply clean the track first, then follow the instructions on the paint can.

For wooden tracks, you’ll need to use a primer made specifically for wood. Once the primer is dry, you can paint the track with regular latex paint.

Again, make sure to clean the track first and follow the instructions on the paint can.

Painted tracks can add a whole new level of customization to your Scalextric set. You can even get creative and design your own race course!

Can You Fix a Scalextric Track to a Board?

It’s better if you don’t nail your Scalextric track to a board, as this can damage the track. Instead, you can use double-sided tape or Velcro strips to attach the track to a surface.

If you do decide to nail the track down, make sure to use small nails so they don’t damage the plastic. It’s also a good idea to put something between the nail and the track, such as a piece of cardboard.

 Carrera GO 1:43 Slot Car Set

How Can I Make Slot Cars Work Better?

If your slot cars are going too slow or not working at all, there are a few things you can do to fix them.

First, check the batteries. If they’re low, replace them with fresh ones. If that doesn’t work, try cleaning the track. Sometimes dirt and dust can build up and prevent the cars from making good contact with the track.

If the cars are still not working properly, you may need to replace the traction magnets. These are located under the car and help it grip the track. You can buy replacement magnets at most hobby stores.

It is also important to make sure the slot cars are cleaned and oiled. A dirty or dry car can cause it to slow down or even stop working altogether.

To clean a slot car, first, remove any dirt and debris with a soft cloth. Then, use a cotton swab dipped in isopropyl alcohol to clean the electrical contacts. Finally, apply a thin layer of oil to the moving parts.

You can also buy special slot car cleaning kits that come with everything you need.

Final Thoughts on Building a Scalextric Slot Car Track

Building a Scalextric slot car track is a fun and rewarding project. Not only will you have a great time putting it together, but you’ll also have a blast racing your friends and family!

With a little bit of planning and elbow grease, you can build a track that’s perfect for any space. And don’t forget to paint and customize it to make it your own!

Now that you know how to build a Scalextric track, what are you waiting for? Get out there and start racing!

Made it to the end? Here are other articles on slot cars you might enjoy:

What is the Point of Scalextric?

Scalextric C1351T ARC One Ultimate Rivals Race Set

Carrera 30188 Digital 1 32 GT Championship


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