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A missed opportunity at the track

A missed opportunity at the track

Old 09-10-2014, 02:37 PM
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Default A missed opportunity at the track

A few weeks ago I was practicing at a local track. A small indoor clay track with a low key (non racer) atmosphere. Most of the people that go here are young kids, bashers, etc. just looking to have a good time. It's too small for 8th scale and they are not allowed on the track. Or, so I thought. Next thing I know a young kid (10) and his dad show up.......with a Kyosho MP9e RTR. It didn't take long to realize that these two had no idea what they were doing. Pure havoc on 4 wheels. Every time they put that car down the track, other drivers slowly pulled their cars off. It was bloody painful to watch. Watching this carnage I figured it was only matter of time before their car broke.........which is exactly what happened. Numerous trips to the attached hobby shop and constant wrenching took up a great deal of Dad's time. I was actually happy since I could then use the track for my cars without fear.

On the way home though, I was kicking myself. I had squandered a golden opportunity to help these guys. Instead of just sitting back and watching them drive that buggy into oblivion, I should have offered some help. I could have nicely given them some driving and etiquette tips. Maybe some suggestions on a more appropriate type of vehicle as well.

Hopefully they don't repeat the pattern that I have seen before. I've seen people buy cars without any knowledge of how to operate it. Car gets broken over and over. The driver spends big money on parts and spends more time fixing instead of driving. Boredom set in, the car gets sold/junked and the hobby loses another customer.

I am hoping I see these guys again at the track so I can help them out. As an experienced driver/racer, I think it's a good idea to help the newbies.

Last edited by blade329; 09-11-2014 at 02:38 PM.
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Old 09-11-2014, 10:11 AM
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Excellent post. What I found out was, some people welcome the help and others, not so much. The only way to know is offer the help and see what happens.
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Old 09-11-2014, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by blade329 View Post
Maybe some suggestions on a more appropriate type of vehicle as well.
Yep, like 17.5 Buggy non-ramping. I have never been a big fan (no offense to anyone, just my opinion) of 8th scale stuff. Especially when they are mixed in with 10th scale. That is not to say that there aren't guys that can really do a hell of a job wheeling one, but that is the minority (well, from what I see locally). Most guys get them and figure that as long as they keep it pinned, they'll make it around the track one way or another. A lot of the guys I have talked to at one of my local tracks started out with them (RTR). They never learned anything about proper driving, as you would with a slower, 2wd buggy. Again, I'm not trying to bash 8th scale... just pointing out my observations.

Maybe if you see them again, at the very least you could help them dial some of the insanity out of that thing... maybe show them how to turn down the throttle end point so it only has 30-40% of the original top-end speed. Plus dial out some dual-rate. Maybe mellow out the throttle curve as well. It's not that they can't learn to drive with that car, it's just that it's simply waaaay too much for a first timer straight out of the box.
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Old 09-11-2014, 02:54 PM
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Originally Posted by nf_ekt View Post
Yep, like 17.5 Buggy non-ramping. I have never been a big fan (no offense to anyone, just my opinion) of 8th scale stuff. Especially when they are mixed in with 10th scale. That is not to say that there aren't guys that can really do a hell of a job wheeling one, but that is the minority (well, from what I see locally). Most guys get them and figure that as long as they keep it pinned, they'll make it around the track one way or another. A lot of the guys I have talked to at one of my local tracks started out with them (RTR). They never learned anything about proper driving, as you would with a slower, 2wd buggy. Again, I'm not trying to bash 8th scale... just pointing out my observations.

Maybe if you see them again, at the very least you could help them dial some of the insanity out of that thing... maybe show them how to turn down the throttle end point so it only has 30-40% of the original top-end speed. Plus dial out some dual-rate. Maybe mellow out the throttle curve as well. It's not that they can't learn to drive with that car, it's just that it's simply waaaay too much for a first timer straight out of the box.
Up until recently, I was a big time 8th scale racer. I totally get what you are saying. These cars just don't play well with 10th scale cars on the same track. I tried it and it just isn't fun for both sides.

If I see them again I'll give it a try. I would turn down that beast by 50% if I could.
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Old 09-11-2014, 04:51 PM
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Originally Posted by blade329 View Post
Up until recently, I was a big time 8th scale racer. I totally get what you are saying. These cars just don't play well with 10th scale cars on the same track. I tried it and it just isn't fun for both sides.

If I see them again I'll give it a try. I would turn down that beast by 50% if I could.
I think I remember some of your threads about it (8th). Having both on track simultaneously is a nightmare for sure. Hopefully you see them again and either tweek some radio / esc settings for them, or let them run your 10th stuff for a minute (so they can see the difference), or both. No one that has any clue as a beginner in RC should be attempting to run an 8th e-buggy first time out. It's like going straight to a bazooka when you should be learning with a .22 (something like that). I'm sure the guy just wanted to make his kid happy though, and that particular buggy is what caught his eye.
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Old 09-11-2014, 08:14 PM
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Imo from your og post, they wouldnt have minded some advice & because your intentions are noble, its never a missed opportunity.
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Old 09-11-2014, 08:23 PM
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We should all help each other whenever we can. Not just r/c. I'm pretty bad, any chance to help someone out I jump all over it because I love the reactions when their stuff is right or some new kind of "magic" is shown to them. I get pretty giddy when I'm on the recieving end too.
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Old 09-13-2014, 01:31 PM
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Help them next time. Or at least let track owner know.
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Old 09-15-2014, 06:20 AM
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Took this to heart a bit last Friday.. I had already packed up to leave and was a little later than I should have been at that.

But I helped a couple of new guys sort out an issue with gear mesh on the brand new Associated ST they had... came with a gear mesh that was super tight for some reason right out of the box.
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Old 09-15-2014, 11:38 AM
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Originally Posted by lbenton View Post
Took this to heart a bit last Friday.. I had already packed up to leave and was a little later than I should have been at that.

But I helped a couple of new guys sort out an issue with gear mesh on the brand new Associated ST they had... came with a gear mesh that was super tight for some reason right out of the box.
Good job.
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Old 09-17-2014, 05:33 PM
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So...one kid starts bashing an 1/8th scale on a 1/10th scale track, then all the other customers pull their cars off the track. Well, that doesn't seem like a very good business strategy for that track.
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Old 09-18-2014, 07:52 PM
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Honestly, I would recommend 1/8th buggies for a starter car. Yes, they are more powerful, but I look at it from a durability standpoint.

If you have a different kind of person (think wild cat) that also plays into what they SHOULD be driving. I would recommend a cautious driver a 1/8 buggy all day. All the crazies should be stuck on 1/10Tth SCT until they learn fully throttle isn't the only thing the truck can do.

I got started with RC real young, well...figuratively...I'm not that old, when the Rustler first came out (born in '91).
I was having a blast with it, then got an Evader BX, then the TMaxx, then a TC3... so on and so forth.
My dad, no matter what car or truck it was, taught me how potentially dangerous they are. Nitro or electric. They have weight, and move. Quickly.
I always bear that in mind, particularly after I've entirely dropped 1/10th scale from my collection. My savage is 18lbs with batteries, my D8T at ~16lbs. They move out fast, because I run 6s. Know the danger, know the risks, and keep things under control.

All that being said, I frequently let people who've never driven an RC in their life, or a hobby grade one period, pilot mine. No throttle limits, no endpoint cutting. I just explain, and physically let them hold it before driving, that they're heavy and have a high potential for damage. Maybe not so much for the truck as what's around it. Usually, I'll give a quick demo on what's possible on 6s (a wheelie, a back flip off a berm, maybe a standing back flip with my savage traction-forgiving), warn them, then just monitor while they go 'reigns free'.

I'll have a few guys who think it's easy jump on, only to get spooked by when it actually just flips it's own lid over when they pin the throttle. They're more cautious after that. Younger kids, I still let drive my trucks, but in those cases I will cut throttle endpoints to ~65-45% of maximum.

One little kid out here in Jacksonville was there with his dad, and he was keeping his little stampede on-course fairly well. Wasn't going as fast as dad was, but he stayed on all for more than he did, lol.
I asked the kid if he wanted to try something bigger. Of course he went, 'Yeah!', and looked to his dad. His dad looked at me like I'm insane, and I nodded back.
Dad agreed and said, 'Alright, just be careful. Remember this isn't your truck!'

I plugged in my 3s packs, and just let him have it, no limits. He was toddling around for a bit, occasionally testing what my truck could do (a LOT more than a brushed stampede). He never went crazy though. Just went around the course, and kept on trying to get it drifting around like his stampede. He eventually got the hang of it (with a little advice and help ), and just had fun!
He ran the batteries out in about 20, and said 'Thank you!!', all giddy and just went back to his truck, a little more confident than before.
That's the kind of stuff I love seeing, and why I always try to let other people in on the hobby. May not always end up without broken parts on my end, but it's better than not letting someone else have in on the fun!

The dad was just shocked that I handed his kid a $980 truck, care free and willing. Suggesting it, even. Lol
The dad didn't want to drive, even though I offered to fix what they broke, if anything. Heheh
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Old 09-19-2014, 06:32 AM
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Months back I was screwing around with things at the track and got to talking to this new guy that I just met. He was running a 2wd buggy and already doing very well despite admitting he was brand new to it.

I turned him loose with my 1:8 e-truggy on the track and it was a whole new world for him. He had no idea what he was missing out on before that.

Next week I saw him again, he had picked up a used Losi eight 2.0 and was half done gathering the electronics for it.

Week after that he he was going strong with both buggies.

Truth is, anybody that has a hobby is an ambassador for it.
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Old 09-19-2014, 08:04 AM
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its difficult to teach slow is fast.

Younger people like the speed/adrenaline and a lot of the time come from a video game culture where the car fixes itself.

I started my son off with a 540 Mabuchi and a TT01e. Best choice I ever made!

Slow and if crashed, its still fine.
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Old 09-19-2014, 07:54 PM
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Originally Posted by tc3team View Post
its difficult to teach slow is fast.
Slow in, fast out. That is the style that works best if you have the discipline. My problem is I get bored and start throwing it into the corners.

TT01's are a good car to start with
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