In this post we explore an exciting aspect of slot car racing away from the track – swap meets.
Swap meets are often seen as an opportunity for traders to buy and sell slot cars to both collectors and racers. Slot cars, spare parts, track and scenery are just a few things found at a typical swap meet and both new and used items are for sale. In the UK, there are notable swap meets held each year in Swindon, Milton Keynes, Orpington, Leeds, Havant and Coventry – with the biggest swap meet of them all, the UK Slot Car Festival, held at the British Motor museum in Gaydon.
When you visit a swap meet it’s not a uncommon to be greeted by rows of tables stacked high with lots of offers on show – but don’t forget to look below the tables for more bargains often hidden away in boxes. The main benefit of swap meets of course is the ability to barter with traders. You’ll be surprised how competitive the pricing is even when compared to internet! Why not give it a go next time you’re attending? If you’re lucky enough too traders may have older, more sought after items, or limited edition slot cars for sale which can’t be found easily elsewhere.
Alternatively, if you enjoy racing for fun or need inspiration for your own home track you can often find temporary circuits at the larger swap meets. Traders who specialise in track scenery or lap counting software in particular can benefit from showcasing their products to you – so why not take advantage or set some hot laps!
If you’re not interested in joining the queue to get in when the swap meet first opens or you’re not mad enough to push your way to the front of the table, don’t worry as there is so much more to enjoy throughout the day. Some tables celebrate the history of the hobby and others accommodate clubs like the NSCC – these like-minded enthusiasts are always happy to talk about slot cars.
The swap meet continues to be a key part to slot racing and even if you come away empty handed the company and day-out is often one to remember. You’d better get saving and find that rucksack ready for the next swap meet coming to a town near you soon!