Since 1987 Faller has been working literally and figuratively on the (model) with the current Faller Car System, which has been around for more than 20 years. With this system, the vehicles are equipped with an engine, battery and a steering mechanism with magnet. This magnet follows an iron-containing wire placed on the road surface. In this way, a virtually invisible guide of the vehicle takes place. A brilliant solution, and optically quite an improvement compared to the predecessor of the Faller Car System, the FALLER A.M.S.
This A.M.S. system was based on road surface parts equipped with a conductor slot and two power-feeding strips for the energy supply of the vehicles, also known as slot car. Read more about A.M.S. here.
Actually, the scale was far too large for HO 1:87, which can be seen in the picture next door. But before then, it was a very nice system. With this system I became acquainted when I was about 15 years old. It was even possible to drive 2 cars independently of each other with a piece of electronics per lane. The working level crossing also brought, an unprecedented amount of play enjoyment.
But back now to the current Faller Car System simply called FCS. This system consists of the following components:
Several cars A driving wire Stop coil Parking coils Splits At the FCS the cars drive independently, the conduction is done by processing an iron-containing wire in the road surface. A magnet on the steering sled ensures that the car follows the track of the wire.
The conduction is therefore virtually invisible, optically quite an improvement compared to the A.M.S. System. Another big difference is the power supply. Every FCS car is equipped with a battery that needs to be charged from time to time. In order to be able to influence the cars from the outside, a so-called reed contact. A reed contact is a contact that is operated by a magnetic field. This contact is built into the car. Using. an electromagnetic coil, if possible, to stop the cars at the place where they are so-called . stop coil is built-in. In addition, the FCS vehicles are of course still equipped with an on/off switch.
All together a not too complicated but still very nice system to get moving cars on the track that, unlike the A.M.S., are at scale. It will be clear that due to the simple design there are only limited possibilities that show a not too realistic road behavior (think of abrupt stopping and pulling up at a stop coil). The FCS vehicles are equipped with 1 or 2 batteries depending on the available space and therefore run at 1.2V or 2.4V voltage. This is a very low voltage. It goes without saying that the electro motors used are also very small and have to do their work at this low voltage. The driving time therefore depends on the size of the model. The more space there is for the batteries the greater the battery capacity can be and therefore the driving time is longer.
That today there is more, even much more, than the standard "Stop and Go" system of Faller can be read in the DCCAR section of this website. About improvements in the guidance system you can read more in the main pieces "Magnetic Tape" and "Construction demo job".
The different cars:
The drive is generally carried out with a worm/gear combination directly connected to the rear axle. The front axle is similar to that of a tractor, a shuttle axle, so that the cars have and keep maximum contact with the road surface. On the shuttle axle are the wheels that can steer through fuse and a steering rod. A copper sled with a small magnet is attached to the handlebar. This magnet will want to follow the steering wire and steer the car.
Depending on the type of car, one or more batteries are installed. These batteries can be charged via a three-pole connector at the bottom. The middle pole is the plus the other two poles are the minus. In this way, one can never be loaded with the wrong polarity. Often the batteries are of the NiMH type which emit a voltage of 1.2Volt each. It will be clear that with such low voltages a smooth course will positively affect the driving time. As in reality are engine type, transmission, type of tires, road surface, bearing of axles, etc. all of this is important for optimal performance of the car.
The on/off turn is done by a small switch. In addition, a so-called "a. reed contact. This is a glass tube, whether or not in plastic, containing a switch contact that responds to magnetic fields. This makes it possible to stop/drive the cars from the outside.
Roughly there are two types of cars:
Larger cars such as trailers with semi-trailers, buses, trucks, etc. these have 2 batteries. And so drive at a voltage of 2 x 1.2V = 2.4Volt and are often equipped with a reed contact which short-circuits the engine in stop mode, the so-called engine brake. Because these models have more weight and a slightly longer spout, this engine brake is needed otherwise they continue to drive in places where they should stop.
Smaller cars such as passenger cars, vans, etc. have only 1 battery and often a single reed contact. The braking distance is naturally short, so an engine brake is not required. these models therefore only run at 1.2Volt voltage!!
Faller's standard thread is coated with a coating that counters the formation of rust. This thread is concealed in the surface of the base plate. To this end, a small slot is milled, Faller has put a special device on the market for this. The wire is then plastered away to create a good flat surface. The Faller street paint is then applied as a finish.
These stop coils are hidden in the road surface. If there is tension, the driving contact in a passing car will be energized and will stop. If the voltage is turned off, the car will continue to drive. Stop coils are meant for short stops.
The Parking Coils:
If you want to keep a car stationary for a longer period of time, there are parking coils. These coils have a permanent magnetic field which is raised by putting a voltage on them. This will put the driver contact at rest and the car will start driving.
The electrical fission has a coil with a small permanent magnet on it. If tension is put on, the coil will press the permanent magnet high, so that the sledging is sent to the front axle in the deflecting direction so that the car will turn off.