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Downforce for R/C Cars

Downforce for R/C Cars

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Old 04-06-2007, 09:31 PM
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Hey yall, im looking into purchasing an older F1 car (either F102 or F103) and I had a few ideas for adding a good amount of downforce to it such as a rear diffuser with possible tunnels as well as a front dampener and modifying both front and rear wings. My question is will this have any effect at such low speeds? I've worked around race cars all my life and i know that a little downforce goes a long way but thats been on all of my dads formula cars and i'm not sure if it would apply to these little buggers. Thanks for the help
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Old 04-06-2007, 11:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Andrew677
Hey yall, im looking into purchasing an older F1 car (either F102 or F103) and I had a few ideas for adding a good amount of downforce to it such as a rear diffuser with possible tunnels as well as a front dampener and modifying both front and rear wings. My question is will this have any effect at such low speeds? I've worked around race cars all my life and i know that a little downforce goes a long way but thats been on all of my dads formula cars and i'm not sure if it would apply to these little buggers. Thanks for the help
Hey, Hows it going?
The rear diffuser with tunnels and the front dampener wouldn't probably do that much. However modifying the front and rear wings will make a big difference. When your going slow it probably wouldn't have much effects because there's hardly any wind hitting it but at high speeds it definetaly will make a difference. How much are you thinking of paying for the F1 and is it RTR or a rolling chassis? Hope this helps! Paul
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Old 04-07-2007, 09:06 AM
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Yea thats sorta what I figured. I might make some fiberglass tunnels and just run some tests. It'll still be a fun little project anyways. Im looking to spend $120-$175 for the car and then probably put in a new motor and possibly some new wheels and tires. This F-1 enthusiast is getting me a nice deal on one of his older built up cars. Just hasnt decided which one. It wont be a rtr but it will come with more than just the chassis such as a servo, motor and possibly a battery. I'm not positive yet.
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Old 04-07-2007, 11:51 AM
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One thing many people forget is, Allthough our little cars are 1/10th scale, The air molecules are not. In the relation to car size, It only takes 1/10th the air movement to create the same effect. Ever had a car that was planted with the wing and then have it come off? Even at very slow speeds the cars feels different.
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Old 04-07-2007, 08:21 PM
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I never thought of it that way but you do raise a very good point. So are tunnels legal on r/c cars? They're the new fad in car racing and really do make a huge difference in the car's grip and handling.
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Old 04-07-2007, 10:48 PM
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at only 20mph these things are matching the real things for scale speed, and thats at their top speed of 200mph'ish.
We actually corner at a much higher speed to what they could ever manage so theoretically our wings, or any aero package come to that will have a greater effect.
I say go for it, but check the rules first.
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Old 04-08-2007, 01:27 AM
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This car might be inspirational.
It is the German champion 2004.
Its aerodynamic mods really work. It has as much downforce as a Pro10.
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Old 04-08-2007, 02:33 AM
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Originally Posted by shawnh
at only 20mph these things are matching the real things for scale speed, and thats at their top speed of 200mph'ish.
We actually corner at a much higher speed to what they could ever manage so theoretically our wings, or any aero package come to that will have a greater effect.
I say go for it, but check the rules first.
Scale speed is a myth, an RC car is simply a very small car travelling at 20mph. So the only aero effects you get are those of air travelling over a wing at 20mph. Not a whole lot of pressure, but yes it can have an affect on something weighing only 1500gms. Watch how those little electric park flyers take off and fly at very low speeds, 10-15mph perhaps, and they weight only a couple of hundred grams.

Most current RC body designs develop downforce through drag rather than aero. Probably 1/12th/Pro-10 are the only cars that actually make any use of air pressure rather than pure drag when you cut the rear of the body out.

Another thing to consider is that a small vehicle is very imperfect in terms of the air flow. RC cars don't tend to have the flat enclosed bottom typical of road and race cars so flow is a mess.

That German Tamiya F1 looks fascinating though, surprised it is legal for a race class with all those mods!
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Old 04-08-2007, 08:46 AM
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The german car is Associated 10th pancar based.
It ran with 12turns cells at 1/8th scale tracks.
Think in terms of 50+mph.

Nowadays we run 10th scale pancar (roadcoarse) with 6 cells and 3.5 turn brushless motors.
Speeds on the straights go up to 60+mph.
Corner speeds are also ballistic with the amounts of downforce these cars produce.

To copy that kind of effect on a F1 car, you really need diffusers and air tunnels.
It only works on relatively flat tracks.
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Old 04-08-2007, 08:54 AM
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universally, aerodynamics comes into affect at about 22mph. (just go at 19mph on your bicycle, then go down a hill at 25, and feel the difference in drag). i have helped build a roughly 2/3 scale electric car, powered by a wheelchair motor and 2 car batteries, (visit www.greenpower.co.uk) and while driving i can feel the way the car drags down at roughly 22mph. this is the same when in a full size car, and i gather the same in an RC car. you might need a wind tunnel to actually look at wind resistance. you can buy computer ones, if you can make a CAD model of your car.
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