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Old 01-21-2009, 01:28 PM   #1
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Default Have any tips for a guy moving from electric to nitro?

I've been racing electric on and off road cars for 17 years and I am moving to an area where 1/8 scale nitro buggies are popular.

I've always wanted to get into nitro and now I'm ready to lay down the 2K or so it'll take to start racing competitively.

I'd love to hear from folks that have made the transition before and get some tips to make that transition easier. I know very little about nitro but lots about R/C cars.

Thanks,
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Old 01-21-2009, 01:43 PM   #2
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I made this same transition last year. I was told to get a truggy because they are easier to drive then go to the buggy. I ran truggy last year, and once I got the quirks out of it I did very well and I went to buggy in the fall. Now I am primarily a buggy guy and may get a truggy again also or will run both nitro and alittle electric. I will say that truggy was rather easy to me going from 2wd 10th scale.
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Old 01-21-2009, 01:43 PM   #3
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the best thing you can do is research.... it is a good idea to go to one of the area tracks where you will be racing and see what all of the local fast guys are running. When you decide to order your kit try and get one that has parts available locally.. if you have any questions about different products feel free to pm me and i can help you out
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Old 01-21-2009, 01:55 PM   #4
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I made the move last year too. Had a truggy for 2months.......was soooo boring imo and then got a buggy and it was great. Get a decent brand engine to start with. Someone like RB (S3, S5, S7 or maybe possibly the WS7) or OS (V Spec) is always a good start. Fuel, again a good brand like Byron or O'donnell (or fuel the guys at your track use most). Don't skimp out on cheapy servos. They'll bite you in the ass! I wouldn't worry to much about where you finish on the first 3months of racing (of course be competitive but don't get annoyed that you finished in the E where you might have finished in the B/A in electric). The feel of a nitro engine compared to a electric motor is quiet different and takes time to get used to. Keeping your car in a good clean state is always a + (Piss-Poor-Prep=Piss-Poor-Performance ). I always dismantle the car after every race weekend right down to the bare chassis and then do a complete rebuild. Even if you don't do that atleast de-burr the clutch shoes and give the clutch assembly a good clean (good clutch=good performance). Other than that, take your time with everything and enjoy
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Old 01-21-2009, 02:04 PM   #5
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If your knowledgeable about racing it should be an easy transition. The only things I can think of that would be new to you would be engine tuning and brake linkage. Buy quality equipment and take your time setting it up. Then read up on breaking in new nitro motors and tuning. By the time you have your engine broken in and ready to race you ought to be good to go. Engine tuning is simple especially with a good quality motor.

There are alot of this car vs that car threads on these forums. Ive found for the most part those threads arent very helpful for me I have always found it best to go into the individual threads for cars and go back a few pages and see what kind of issues people who are actually racing the cars are having.

What kind of gear are you thinking of purchasing? There are a lot of good choices out there for cars but for engines and stuff there are far less good choices.
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Old 01-21-2009, 02:14 PM   #6
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i did the same last year also, but i went strait to buggy. in fact i've never drivin a truggy but have thought about getting one. if i were you go for a buggy that people say are "twitchy", losi, xray come to mind. simply because you're comming from fast "twitchy" little cars, and losi, xray will feel no different to you than 1/10th scale. you're going to like this and be ready to have people upset at you because you're going to be fast right out of the box. with electric experance, you will find that a lot of nitro only racers (not doggin you guys) leave the inside line open all over the track, and it makes for easy passing. and go for an engine that has "grunt", the reason is nitro doesn't have the acceceleration of electric. unless you have a C6
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Old 01-21-2009, 02:16 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone for the replies so far, looks like this board is very helpful with good ppls on it!

I raced a Schumacher Cat 3000 buggy off road for a few years so I feel pretty good about going straight to a buggy.

I've done a lot of research on cars and I'm leaning to the XRAY 808. They seem to have the best information resources on-line and the shop carries XRAY parts.

I was thinking some good quality ACE servos, but haven't put much time into an engine yet. I think this is where I need the most help is everything around the power plant, fuel, braking and clutching.

For some reason I'm drawn to Italian engines, must be because they make some of the finest race cars in the world...
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Old 01-21-2009, 02:54 PM   #8
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I started out with an OS Vspec and then switched to a GRP .21 Tuned and have fallen in love with it . Dont get me wrong never had any problems with the ol trusty Vspec, but the fuel milage and ease to tune of the GRP have me sold forever. And its made in italy LOL
Just my 2 cents
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Old 01-21-2009, 02:59 PM   #9
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You wont go wrong with the XRay 808, there a great vehicle that can be setup quickly and easily to adapt to a massive variety of tracks. As for engines, I may get flamed fro this but meh, before you go blowing massive cash on the full house motor (ie OS Speed, Ninja JX21-B01, Sirio Kansai EVO IV STi, high end Novarossi etc.), get yourself a good strong club standard 5 port ie OS V-Spec, GoTech 21-5 R Spec, Novarossi do a nice one etc. Find out what the local guys run. By getting a competative 5 port, its not gonna cost you the earth and gives you a little bit of leanance when it comes to tuning. You chernobyl one of these 5 ports, its not too bad to rebuild, one of the high spec ones = ouch. Then 3-6 months time when you start to get tuning down pat and have your head around the way a nitro motor delivers power, then buy yourself a nice uber spec motor.

Fuel depends on the area, have a look at what others run. Someone that is racing competatively will go for a very low synthetic oil content - nil caster content fuel which whilst will give the best power and delivery, has a very narrow window of tune. This will make it harder to tune and if its a touch too lean, the motor goes pop. Get a local used fuel thats not quite raggedy edge stuff for starters ie 25% nitro, 11% synthetic oil, 3% Caster mix. When you have the tuning of motors down, then go to the good stuff.

Talk to the local club to see what they can get locally, OS gear is generally a good start (and dead easy to tune), though the Novarossi gear is usually pretty readily available if you want an Italian.

You got the car right, got the servos right, just need to pick you radio ( think DX3R, 3PK, 4PK, KO Propo or the airtronics MX3FHSS for a cheap but good alternative ), motor and get some fuel and your giggling.

Have fun with nitro racing, theres nothing quite like the smell and noise of Nitro to let you know that your racing.

Cheers

Mike
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Old 01-21-2009, 03:06 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Banter View Post
Thanks everyone for the replies so far, looks like this board is very helpful with good ppls on it!

I raced a Schumacher Cat 3000 buggy off road for a few years so I feel pretty good about going straight to a buggy.

I've done a lot of research on cars and I'm leaning to the XRAY 808. They seem to have the best information resources on-line and the shop carries XRAY parts.

I was thinking some good quality ACE servos, but haven't put much time into an engine yet. I think this is where I need the most help is everything around the power plant, fuel, braking and clutching.

For some reason I'm drawn to Italian engines, must be because they make some of the finest race cars in the world...
Your car choice and estimated expenditures are excellent. The Xray 3 shoe clutch is a good clutch you can try some after market clutches but I would wait. A good quality engine beginner or not would be RB S5 or S7. You don't need to step all the way down to an S3. The 2 before mentioned engines are the easiest to tune and will outlast practically any engine on the market. If you have been driving on road the transition to a buggy will be quite easy. Best advice bar none: Got patience?
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Old 01-21-2009, 03:08 PM   #11
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The big thing that helped my transition to nitro was the local club. Those guys were an invaluable resource and I probably would have not stuck with it without 'em. But I also didn't have 17 years of previous R/C experience
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Old 01-21-2009, 03:19 PM   #12
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PATIENCE....LOCTITE and Solid gear. Not saying that you have to buy the most expensive but buy quality...

Try to get an understanding of why the engine does what it does. Talk with experienced racers. Start with an OS VSPEC... Easiest engine on the earth to tune. Even when your settings are off it will still get you through a race(trust I know).

Also never get your engine tuned to max performace on pavement then put it in the dirt. GURANTEE it will be to lean because of the extra wheelspin and lack of traction that you have on dirt. Thats my personal experience.

AND AGAIN START with a OS VSPEC as your first engine..... Makes life so much easier
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Old 01-21-2009, 03:35 PM   #13
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Thanks again everyone! I'm going to do some research on engine tuning. I'm the kind of person that pays close attention to detail (software architect)... so I'll see you all in about a year.

Given that I have patience and I don't desire to just get the car running as soon as possible, do any of you feel I can just start off with an uber engine after doing careful research and get some help from you guys & local experts?
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Old 01-21-2009, 04:13 PM   #14
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For your first Nitro I wouldn't break the bank. Chances are it will have a shorter than normal lifespan as you will be learning to tune on it. Sounds like you are going about it right! And perfect choice of car too! I would be hesitant with the Ace servos. They are good but to me develop slop too soon. But for the price they perform very well. Look at the EX10 Helios for a radio. And KO servos. Their new radios and servos are set up to handle the power of lipo right off the bat with not regulator.
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Old 01-21-2009, 04:48 PM   #15
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1) Loctite is your friend.

2) I always recommend nitro beginners start with a new engine. It can be very difficult to make a used engine run properly, let alone not knowing what they did to it.

3) Nowadays, I'd definitely suggest a Spektrum system. Either the module in your favorite radio, or I've heard alot of good things about the DX3r or S. It gives you good protection from radio related runaway problems.
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