R/C Tech Forums

Go Back   R/C Tech Forums > General Forums > Electric On-Road

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 08-10-2008, 06:52 AM   #1
Tech Rookie
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Littleton, Colorado
Posts: 2
Default Need Help picking a Car for 10 year old beginner

I want to get an RC Car for my son's birthday but don't even know where to begin. Can you suggest a good make a model to start with.

Everything I've read so far says I should probably start him with an Electric Car. However, I know he really wants a gas one.

I think he would prefer a truck or dune buggy to a car?

Thank you for you help
SZcars is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 07:03 AM   #2
Tech Master
shadow102's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 1,441
Trader Rating: 21 (96%+)

you can run gas or electric. Gas is a little more fun straight out of the box due to speed and sound. Electric also has some more startup costs involved...over time however the nitro will end up costing you more in engine rebuilds/replacement, fuel, and generally nitro's are harder on parts due to the extra weight they carry
Hot Bodies Cyclone - - TeamTekin - - Spektrum - - Team Orion - - Futaba

shadow102 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 07:05 AM   #3
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: r.i.p Chiquita - 1993-2008 - "best dog in the world"
Posts: 164

Since you're asking I'm guessing that you're new to RC too and as a result I'd just suggest that a nitro truck is way outside the parameters of what either of you will be able to work on, gas trucks require a lot of tuning and fiddling and maintenance, or afford to keep running as a starter truck. And while some think gas is easy to get into, the startup costs of electric is way less. So I'd recommend electric as a staring point, and I'd also recommend one of the major brands (associated, losi, traxxas) for replacement parts availability because every rc rookie spends more time crashing and breaking things than they do driving initially. From that line of thinking I'd also recommend checking out your local track and hobby shop to see what everyone's running and what the shop carries because it's easier to get answers when you have problems, and everyone does, if you have something they're familiar with or have parts for than something they aren't. And finally, don't settle on something as a means to save a buck. While this can be a relatively inexpensive hobby, the more money you spend on quality items to begin with the less chance you'll have on needing to replace them in the near future.
ratherBracin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 07:25 AM   #4
Tech Elite
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: anywhere I can race 2wd dirt,and 1/12 onroad in MI.
Posts: 3,399
Trader Rating: 39 (100%+)

Rather B racin is right about quite a few things.Gas is WAY more involved and with the price of nitromethane going sky high the r/c world is about to see a drastic increase in fuel costs. If your son is 10 I dont think I would be spending enough to set-up a competition level set-up. so beginner oriented components will work. I suggest you go to www.towerhobbies.com and look into a duratrax evader BXT buggy or EXT truck. The whole RTR set runs around 120.00. They are quite durable , and will be a great platform for your boy to get familiar with true hobby grade r/c components. Plus all the parts are available through tower, so for the price of a toys are us break it once and throw it in the garbage car you can get him a car that can be repaired and upgraded as his skill level increases.
2wdMod is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 09:17 AM   #5
Tech Regular
Cory B's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Knoxville, Ia
Posts: 403
Trader Rating: 5 (100%+)



Traxxas makes probably some of the toughest r/c cars available. This truck will do 35 mph out of the box which will keep your boy smiling from ear to ear.

plus, with the brushless technology already equiped, you dont have to worry about rebuilding electric motors. brushless = maintanence free.

This might be a little more expensive than a Duratrax Evader, but This truck will last 5 times longer.

Traxxas has excellent customer support and thier cars are top notch for beginners.

Good Luck in whichever you decide.

Wild Bill's R/C Hobbies - Knoxville, Ia
Velocity R/C www.velocityrc.net
Lancebuilt Hobbies
Cory B is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 09:38 AM   #6
Tech Elite
SWTour's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Central Coast...CALIF.
Posts: 2,803
Trader Rating: 9 (100%+)


A few questions to ask yourself, and your son...

Where and what type of surface will he be able to run this car on?

What type of 'mechanical' ability do YOU and HE have? (How technical of a car do you want to get into...and have to FIX when they get damaged)

How BIG will the area be he can run in (35mph cars in a 50 ft by 50 ft area are hard to control sometimes...FASTER is worse, and FASTER cars need LOTS of ROOM w/o obsticles to CRASH IN To.)

NITRO for a 10yr Old NEWBIE - bad idea, unless you will be On Hand EVERY TIME he plays with the car. They are temperamental, and can be very frustrating for NEWBIES.

There are several fairly 'inexpensive' RTR (Ready to RUN) types of cars that are great for a NEWBIE, except most of the parts on those types of cars break a little easier than a "RACE" type R/C Vehicle.

Do some research, visit a local hobby store and see what THEY carry..and also have SUPPORT PARTS for. See if they also do "In House" repairs, or can help YOU if the need arises.
Joe Myers
R/C Racing since 1985 ~ Santa Maria, CA (Central Coast)
2001-2012 - South-West Tour R/C Oval Series - R.I.P.
...will the SWT be revived? Time will tell, but we ARE returning to the VELODROME in 2016
SWTour is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 09:43 AM   #7
Tech Apprentice
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: sonoma county
Posts: 99

i'd go for the Duratrax evader tough as nails and pretty fast,stay away from the ext or base model and get the st
nib is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 09:47 AM   #8
Tech Regular
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 375
Trader Rating: 1 (100%+)

A bone stock Traxxas Slash will cost $300 once you purchase batteries and a charger.

It is an extremely durable truck and a lot of fun.

One nice feature is a training mode which reduces power to %50.

I can't say enough about how great this RC truck is for a beginner or otherwise.
If you son sticks with RC and wants more he will be able to add a faster motor esc and batteries to this truck or step up to a more sophisticated rig and still enjoy bashing the slash around.

My 2c

WooHoo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 09:58 AM   #9
Tech Master
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 1,299

I highly recommend electric for a beginner. regardless of the power source, you still control it the same way. It will determine if your son will commit to the hobby at a relatively cheap(and clean) cost. Does he like to wrench on stuff?
redbones is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 10:13 AM   #10
Tech Master
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Outside of Crook County Illinois
Posts: 1,947
Trader Rating: 2 (100%+)
Send a message via AIM to A-Ko

I would look at a good brand electric truck. The key is good parts support, availability and a local HS that supports the parts that your son will break, which can happen on the 1st run.
teamgravityrc.com - motivrc.com
USVTA National Points Member #101
A-Ko is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 10:22 AM   #11
Tech Elite
chris moore's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Phx AZ
Posts: 3,645
Trader Rating: 85 (99%+)

Like most of the other replies I too would recomend electric over gas, gas is cool due to the sound and all but a royal pita to keep in tune. I'd also recomend a truck over a car, thay are cheaper to buy and at his age he'll want to be able to run whatever you buy in the street with his freinds. You can do that with a TC but its easier with a truck. Good luck either way you go.
Sponsered by:

CMDezigns Paint Works
chris moore is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 10:23 AM   #12
Regional Moderator
CarbonJoe's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 2,660

Stay away from Nitro for a beginner. Too many things to adjust, tweak, or mess up for a rookie. Electric vehicles are basically just charge and go. A truck of some sort is probably preferable, since they can be run on the street, in the backyard, in sand, mud, etc. Kids like jumping things, which you can't do with a car.

As mentioned before, the Traxxas Slash is hugely popular right now, all for $199 (comes with truck Ready to Run, radio, assembled). You only need to add a battery and a charger. The speed controller (ESC) has a training mode that limits the throttle to 50% of max speed. Good for rookies. As he progresses, you can set it for 100% throttle.

As far as batteries, LiPo is the rage now, since you can just charge and go, and re-use them multiple times in one day. They require a LiPo compatible charger. You have to be careful not to over-discharge them, or you will kill them. NiMH batteries are a little more tolerant of abuse, but should only be used couple times a day. To maximize the life of a NiMH, they need specific care as well. They tend to be cheaper than LiPo, but you would need to have more than one pack to run a bunch of times a day. So even though a LiPo is a little more expensive, you only need 1 pack to run a bunch of times a day. Just don't over discharge them. If the pack swells up, it's done.

That said, the Slash doesn't have a LiPo cutoff built in (the ESC will stop when the battery voltage gets to the safety cutoff level in order to prevent over discharging). You can add one (Novak makes one).

Go to your Local Hobby Shop and see what vehicles they carry, and see what parts they carry for them. Pick something that has local parts availability.

Good Luck.
*** The Gate - Celebrating 7 years at the same location ***
The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits. - Albert Einstein
Understeer is when you hit the wall with the front of the car and oversteer is when you hit the wall with the rear of the car
CarbonJoe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 11:15 AM   #13
Tech Master
TwoTone's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Maryland
Posts: 1,002
Trader Rating: 12 (100%+)

My son is 6 and I got him a Slash- he loves it.

The thing is almost indestructible. We had it at a skate park, went off a 12 ft quarter pipe and didn't break.

The other thing he runs my old mini that is FWD to make it easier to drive.

So it depends on what kind of driving he wants to do, on road or off.
TwoTone is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 02:59 PM   #14
Tech Regular
getpip's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 369

Just to add my two cents ....

Try to buy from a local store that has stock of spare parts. They will (should) also help you out when you encounter problems.

He will break things and the worst thing would be not to be able to make repairs.

Choose a well known high profile brand (not an internet no name) eg. Traxxas HPI or Tamiya and you wont go far wrong.

Have fun... Oh and we all know it not just for your son!!!
getpip is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-10-2008, 04:28 PM   #15
Tech Elite
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: anywhere I can race 2wd dirt,and 1/12 onroad in MI.
Posts: 3,399
Trader Rating: 39 (100%+)

I get the support your local hobby store stuff guys , but some of us dont have a local hobby store, and keep in mind if this is their first R/C experience they probally dont want to go dump 3-5 hundred on a beginners car.There fore I stick with my suggestion of an evader exb or ext for 2 reasons;
1. you can get the RTR set a battery and charger for 175.00
2. they have a 1 year stress tech. warantee on all the plastics.So if things do get broke you will only be spending a couple dollars for postage to send a part in to be replaced.
2wdMod is offline   Reply With Quote

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Need Help picking a Car for 10 year old beginner SZcars Nitro On-Road 8 08-14-2008 05:34 PM
2007 Year in Review - The year of the Major Track Closings? or8ital Electric On-Road 25 12-19-2007 11:51 AM
Need help picking an ESC! D4nny06 Electric On-Road 26 02-12-2007 02:04 PM
Good Beginner Elect Offroad for 6 year old mhallerbach Electric Off-Road 31 03-16-2006 11:11 AM
need help picking a first car skater-racer Electric On-Road 8 07-01-2005 02:37 PM

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off

All times are GMT -7. It is currently 01:12 AM.

Powered By: vBulletin v3.9.2.1
Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Advertise Content © 2001-2011 RCTech.net

SEO by vBSEO 3.5.0