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Old 03-17-2017, 08:33 AM   #1
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Default Prediction for carpet racing 1/10 and 1/12 in coming years

I started racing RC cars in 1983. Call it a hunch, but I really feel like there is going to be a (continued) resurgence in the popularity of 1/10 touring and 1/12th scale carpet racing in the coming years.

I base this on the fact that at some point, 1/10 buggy racers are going to realize that if they are having to purchase another complete purpose-built car to run 2WD and 4WD buggies indoors on carpet, why not just buy something that is cooler and faster like a 1/10 touring car or 1/12th scale car. Am I the only one who sees this?
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Old 03-17-2017, 09:01 AM   #2
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I started in 1984, I hear you.Back then , having more than 1 or 2 cars was unheard of.

With more , and cheaper options than ever, almost everyone owns multiple cars for every local track/surface.
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Old 03-17-2017, 10:16 AM   #3
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I brought my first RC car in 1988 (RC-10), and started competitive RC racing in 1992, 12th scale.

What I have seen over the years that the popularity of any particular form of racing goes in cycles. On road will drop while off road gets more popular, then it switches. The changes cannot be linked to any particular event, it just happens. Off road has gone from loamy dirt, to hard packed clay, to now carpet and astroturf. (Off road carpet is an oxymoron)

The one thing you can count on is there is a strong but small base for every form of RC racing, so it will always be there. It just may not be on the level that we want.
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:22 PM   #4
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I'm genuinely annoyed that offroad has gone to high traction surfaces. But that's not the conversation here, is it?

The trend seems to be ever stickier surfaces, and ever higher traction chassis setups.

At some point, someone is going to get sick of seeing cars bicycle, and roll over, and will finally bring out a tire that is actually low traction.
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Old 03-17-2017, 12:48 PM   #5
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I think that the biggest issue facing the hobby today is just too many frikking classes. I too started in 83 with 1/12 scale. There was no off road of any sort and no 1/10 at all. We all ran modified which at the time was a motor costing no more than $30 and a set of 1200MAH Sanyo batteries that couldn't cost more than $24. ROAR rules. All races were 8 minutes so if you couldn't make run time you put a smaller pinion on it until you could. Every six weeks we would change classes by putting on a different style body and everything was good. Today we have so many different motors and classes it is like attending a Corvette club autocross event. Everybody wins something.

If we could go to a deal where 25.5 was stock and everything else was modified there would be no more arguments about what motor should be allowed and which body to use on a left hand wound dodaddy for a nanny goat's back side on black or grey carpet above or below the equator. Will this type of thing work? Probably not. It's too simple and makes things equal for everybody. The top guys will be the same as always and the ones that can't drive a nail in the dirt will still complain that everybody that is faster than they are is cheating.

Work out these issues and the growth in the hobby will be staggering.
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Old 03-17-2017, 01:10 PM   #6
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I think that the biggest issue facing the hobby today is just too many frikking classes.
what he says.

we can still be pragmatic, though. 12th scale, one class. 10th scale onroad, pan one class, DTM one classe, F1. 10th offroad, 2wd open, 4wd open, ST 2wd open (no SC, as you notice ). basta.
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Old 03-17-2017, 01:19 PM   #7
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I see permanent facility carpet racing decreasing even further as cost of rent keeps climbing and the brick and mortar shops disappearing. Carpet clubs may still be sustainable in colder weather, where people must stay indoors in the winter, but perhaps there is a shift like in Europe where people set up carpet tracks in gyms and convention centers on weekends during "indoor season". Of course I don't think all tracks will disappear, but the model is fundamentally broken. Making rent on an indoor track is nearly impossible for a prolonged period of time. This is the biggest reason there is not any more indoor tracks than what we currently have.

Cost of RC is a big hindrance, but it is not due to the economy or the price of the items. it is the fact that there is so much more competition for people's disposable income and time today than what there was 25+ years ago. People want to do so much more today than before. Sim racing, real racing, mountain bikes, road bikes, motorcycles, boats, fishing, paint ball, the list is endless. It is much harder to compete today for people's dollars than before. This certainly cannot help.

In the future I see tracks that fall into the following categories: parking lots, on park lands, on private property, clubs with strong membership and reasonable rent (or temporary set ups), tracks that are subsidized by wealthy individuals or businesses. California, Washington and Texas are good examples of where the industry is going. We all need to pay attention to this, because realistically speaking the indoor track model "business" no longer works in the majority of markets across the country.
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Old 03-17-2017, 03:23 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robracing View Post
I started racing RC cars in 1983. Call it a hunch, but I really feel like there is going to be a (continued) resurgence in the popularity of 1/10 touring and 1/12th scale carpet racing in the coming years.

I base this on the fact that at some point, 1/10 buggy racers are going to realize that if they are having to purchase another complete purpose-built car to run 2WD and 4WD buggies indoors on carpet, why not just buy something that is cooler and faster like a 1/10 touring car or 1/12th scale car. Am I the only one who sees this?
It kinda sounds like you are making a blanket statement that only touring car racing is cool , so you want every body who runs off road to convert over to on road touring car carpet racing ? Both on and off road are great types of racing. I love both but can only focus on one type when I'm racing . I think that there should be more tracks and I think that Rc racing deserves some kind of exposure to the masses , perhaps even put on TV . Problem is these places require people with money to open them and then you need people who race there to support them. We all want a place to race but we spend little money once there. Most use the Internet to buy their stuff and eventually the track closes its doors because it can't sustain itself. Racing fees alone can't keep a place open . I've sold my on road stuff when the carpet track closed only to rebuy everything again once it reopened . While it was closed I had to race so I started off road . There is much to love in both types of racing. A racer doesn't care ,racing is king . Then u have people who are the main reason that other people stay away from all types of racing. People sometimes act like donkeys rear ends so others avoid going to places where the donkeys rear ends frequent . Track owners don't open tracks cause they wanna get rich, it's a labor of love. And they gotta bend over backwards to please all types of people who complain about everything and or have no sense of curtesy . Having seen so many places close their doors due to lack of cash and rising expenses makes us all sad. Truth is without money there is no tracks , I hope I'm wrong but unles racers get involved in keeping their local tracks going they slowly and eventually go away . I do hope I'm wrong cause I love to race my toy cars and hate it when there is no track to race at
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Old 03-17-2017, 03:34 PM   #9
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I agree with everything Christian said. It's especially difficult to get kids involved now that they have things like video games that look damn-near real life and iPhones. Running an indoor track is just not sustainable unless there are special circumstances like Christian mentioned. We are lucky here in Spokane to have the little-bitty indoor tack we have and the only reason we have it is because the building was paid off many years ago.
It's pretty cheap rent here compared to many other places around the country, but when you consider "cheap" is $6 per square foot per year for a building in the industrial slums and you quickly realize an indoor track is simply not viable. A modest-sized carpet track of 80 ft. x 36 feet with driver's stand requires 3,000 square feet of space alone plus you need space for pitting. A 5,000 square foot building is $30,000 per year in rent and that's before the $7,000 you'll spend in timing equipment, carpet and track borders. Don't forget you need to turn the lights and heat on occasionally and you probably want some insurance. How many people, how often and and at what price per head makes that feasible? Don't forget to account for the fact that you will get about zero people in the door when the weather warms up because they will want to be outside racing off-road or boating or jet skiing or camping or going to the water park or... Try finding a 6-month lease on a commercial building that runs October through March.

Quote:
Originally Posted by robracing View Post
I started racing RC cars in 1983. Call it a hunch, but I really feel like there is going to be a (continued) resurgence in the popularity of 1/10 touring and 1/12th scale carpet racing in the coming years.

I base this on the fact that at some point, 1/10 buggy racers are going to realize that if they are having to purchase another complete purpose-built car to run 2WD and 4WD buggies indoors on carpet, why not just buy something that is cooler and faster like a 1/10 touring car or 1/12th scale car. Am I the only one who sees this?
The jumps are a bit tough on the touring and pan cars.
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Old 03-17-2017, 07:53 PM   #10
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Everything goes in cycles, i think big races will be back to handout motors in the near future. I wouldn't be surprised to see 12th scale on rubber tires similar to the wgtr class, at least in stock.
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Old 03-17-2017, 09:50 PM   #11
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The below isn't a cohesive thought, just a few ideas crumpled together.

How racing is done in the future isn't really as important as who is racing in the future.

When internet speeds improve to eliminate lag, everything that is done racing a real car can be done on-line. VRC Pro and gaming systems already do this now.

To have a viable business/activity, one must replace us old guys with fresh blood.

In the China area I live, tracks are subsidized and sometimes regulated by friendly government agencies. For example, last year's On Road Worlds were organized by the Chinese government, not a private club.

Because of the basic educational system here, you must enroll your kids in after school activities; some sponsored by the government, some private companies. They teach piano, rock climbing, etc. People I know have found corporate sponsors and held educational racing clubs for kids in and out of the school system.

Depending on age, there are opportunities to teach geometry, dynamics, electricity, painting, vacuum forming, mechanical engineering, manufacturing, etc. With all those teaching computer sub-systems like Solid Works, Excel, AutoCAD, finite modeling, etc.

I really see an opportunity in the near future to replace the present old man racing model with something more educational, emphasizing the STEM subjects for teenagers to learn and compete.
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Old 03-18-2017, 07:32 AM   #12
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I think it will grow as long as old racers continue to bring out their kids and show them the fun and learning that can be had with racing. Certain areas are just not feasible to have a track, and that is why the tracks are popping up outside of the cities. I feel very fortunate to have a local carpet track that is located in the city and open 24/7 for members.

Support your local shops, and you will see the track population grow.
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Old 03-18-2017, 08:24 AM   #13
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I don't think the companies who make on-road kits really want it to get big again. That's why a race quality sedan kit that could run in a local A-main or a national D-main costs $500 and a 2wd buggy of the same caliber is under $250 with an aluminium chassis.

I love 1/12 scale, but it will die soon without new blood that want to buy a $250 tire truer and spend $50 a month on tires, yet F1 rubber tires on WGTR have ruined the driving character of the cars. Pushing some random rubber tire from an 1/18 scale car into the 1/12th racing would kill the class dead in a week. A completely new rim and tire would have to be designed, tested, re-designed and re-tested then pushed on a rubber hating majority. I don't know the answer, but these are the challenges.
I have often wondered about a large version of the silicone tires I used to run on AFX/Tyco slot cars that would slide onto the stock BSR or CRC rims.

I'm sure the cost of carpet being double affects the track owners as well.
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Old 03-18-2017, 10:59 AM   #14
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I don't think the companies who make on-road kits really want it to get big again. That's why a race quality sedan kit that could run in a local A-main or a national D-main costs $500 and a 2wd buggy of the same caliber is under $250 with an aluminium chassis.

I love 1/12 scale, but it will die soon without new blood that want to buy a $250 tire truer and spend $50 a month on tires, yet F1 rubber tires on WGTR have ruined the driving character of the cars. Pushing some random rubber tire from an 1/18 scale car into the 1/12th racing would kill the class dead in a week. A completely new rim and tire would have to be designed, tested, re-designed and re-tested then pushed on a rubber hating majority. I don't know the answer, but these are the challenges.
I have often wondered about a large version of the silicone tires I used to run on AFX/Tyco slot cars that would slide onto the stock BSR or CRC rims.

I'm sure the cost of carpet being double affects the track owners as well.
As a die hard 12th guy its broad overreaching statements like this that do more damage to the on-road side of the hobby than anything else. Yes if you have to have the best of the best, most expensive tire truer then yes you can invest $250+. But what your not also saying is that unlike most RC expenditures you can get most of that back when it's time to sell it so the money is not lost; and there are many perfectly good truers that don't cost an arm and a leg. Tires, 12th tires are the cheapest tire you can buy; and while rubber TC tires last long on carpet try and run those 32's or 36's on asphalt and see how fast that bill adds up. Not to mention the tire bill that off-road guys end up dishing out, and all the time they spend cutting foams and gluing ten different compounds of tires for three tracks. Talk about a time and money pit.

But back to the topic at hand I have to agree with what Cristian said it is almost impossible for an indoor track to survive in the current conditions. With the wide array of options which are available and competing for our disposable income, and the lack of new fresh faces at the tracks it's clear that the RC hobby (on-road in particular) faces some daunting challenges. The best thing we can do is set a good example and do our best to inform and have fun while we still have the option to do so.
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Old 03-18-2017, 11:05 AM   #15
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Two things have remained constant for nearly 30 years. #1 - it has always been an expensive proposition to own and operate an indoor carpet facility. #2 - there always seem to be a handful of folks scattered about the country with the necessary levels of passion, desire, and creativity that are required to meet the challenges of being a carpet track operator. I just thank my lucky stars that there have been (and continue to be) a few carpet venues available to me in the mid-Atlantic region. Don't know what I'd do if I didn't get the chance to scratch my carpet itch on a regular basis.
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