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Old 06-17-2007, 10:01 PM   #106
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Thank you. I believe that is one of the problems some guys have. I participated in my first race this past weekend. Did I go expecting to beat guys that have been racing for years? NO, I went with all intentions of giving someone one heck of a race for last. That's being realistic for someone running a TC for the first time and their first race of any kind. I did manage to beat a couple people, but most importantly had a great time, learned a little bit, got some experience and can't wait until the next race.
Good for you Just set small goals for yourself to keep pushing yourself to get better. It takes time and practice more than fancy equipment.
If you listen and are respectful you will find the experienced guys will help you out when you have questions.
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Old 06-17-2007, 10:22 PM   #107
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Admitingly, I didn't read every post on this topic, but I think I saw enough to realize a trend in most of the comments.

It seems like the cost of this hobby is one of if not the the biggest detractor to a new hobbyist/racer. I can definately see how this is true. At the very minimum that I can think of, it would cost a new racer(or said new racers parents) around $450 for a competitive car, charger, and one or two batteries. Now, in my 30 year old eyes, that ain't all that bad, however, if you are marketing this or rather trying to sell the middle class parents of a 10-14 year old child on a $400+ toy(yes, I said toy because that is what most parents will view that 10th scale race car as), huh....good luck.

What can be done about prices then? Well, I know that I can't do much, and I'm sure most of you can't either, but I don't think lipo batteries and brushless motors are necessarily going to be the answer to the initial costs involved with RC racing/bashing, and initial costs here are the key in this game. If you could somehow bring that initial cost down from $450 to say $300 or less, the product would be much easier to sell.

So why can't this be done? Anybody? Buehler?

So let's say you sell that parent on that $400 car, now what is the child going to do with it? If you are selling from a store that also has a track, you might see him/her there a few times, and then never see them again, but what if they do get into it? The suggestion of a spec or begginer class is a good one that can and does work. However, what if there isn't enough people there for that beginner class on race night? Now what happens, well, the new racer will most likely have to go into the next available class where he/she is most likely going to get trounced. This is the unfortunate side effect of the initial cost of this hobby leading to a lack of beginner racers. Oh, and if you think this would be any different if you marketed this hobby to the 25 year old + crowd, think again. A beginner 25 year old racer has the same skill level as a beginner 14 year old, the only difference is the 25 year old might have deeper pockets. SO a quick thought here on what to do in this situation is to have a "Rookie of the night award". Literally have some little plaques or trophies made up that say rookie of the night, and hand them out to the best finishing beginner of the night. That way the thought of being trounced by us more skilled racers would be squashed by the little trinket that he/she gets to take home and place on the refrigerator, TV, night stand, mantle, etc... Of course, the novelty might wear off in time, but hopefully by then with a little practice, and some help from us "fast" guys, he/she will be good enough to actually compete in that class.

So, without getting too long winded here, here are some of my suggestions....

1. Initial cost. Bring it down, sell the RTR's, they can only help to bring new racers/bashers into this hobby.

2. Limit Classes of cars, but be open to anything. For example, if you as a track owner don't normally run 1/18th scale, but 4 guys show up with them on race night, race em'.

3. Promote the beginner classes, and try to get that beginner to bring in some of his/her friends so as they can see how much fun it can be.

4. Help out in anyway you can, and remember that you at one time were a beginner too. Even if it means giving a new racer one of your older race or practice packs instead of selling it for a measly 15 bucks. Trust me it'll be worth it's weight in gold to that kid running the 1500mah sport packs.

5. Race at your local tracks. If you yourself don't race, how can you expect anyone else too. Not too mention that everyone always wants to race against the local fast guy.

6. Promote your local track in anyway you can. Talk to your co-workers, take your car to work and give them all a demonstration at lunch or something(trust me, a bunch of thirty year old men find alot of enjoyment seeing your 1/8 scale jump the dumpster at the jobsite). Try to set up demos at local events, such as church festivals, car shows, local full scale race tracks etc.. Anything to allow the public to see what we all do in this little RC underworld.

Last edited by BuckMan; 06-17-2007 at 10:45 PM.
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Old 06-17-2007, 10:34 PM   #108
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Quote:
Originally Posted by g_mabry View Post
Thank you. I believe that is one of the problems some guys have. I participated in my first race this past weekend. Did I go expecting to beat guys that have been racing for years? NO, I went with all intentions of giving someone one heck of a race for last. That's being realistic for someone running a TC for the first time and their first race of any kind. I did manage to beat a couple people, but most importantly had a great time, learned a little bit, got some experience and can't wait until the next race.
And essentially thats what its all about! I switched to electric TC from Nitro TC and I got my ass handed to me first 3 races I entered, given the delicate balance of electric TC vs Nitro TC I wasnt all that surprised. BUT at the end of the day I sat down with the Losi guys came onto this forum got some input from the guys running my platform and sure enough I split the field in my next race. In the 5 weeks I have been in electric TC I have learned a lot, raced nitro for 4 years so wasnt a total beginner, but electric touring car especially on rubber is in a different league from most other racing because of the fine balance of the cars. Did I have to go to straight to sportsman stock? No but I watched the guys in intermediate stock and even with my stock no setup I would have been all over those guys so I elected to go the hard way and it has paid off. If you want to run TC you have to constantly be "tweaking" to find perfect balance between driving style and suspension options I have spent at least 20 hours in 4 weeks basically getting wheel time and using different setups and it is slowly paying off, but you have to have that mentality if you want to succeed in this class. If you dont spend the time then theres no payoff that simple!
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Old 06-17-2007, 10:46 PM   #109
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Originally Posted by ottoman View Post
Good for you Just set small goals for yourself to keep pushing yourself to get better. It takes time and practice more than fancy equipment.
If you listen and are respectful you will find the experienced guys will help you out when you have questions.
This is exactly what it takes. Small goals. I have also noticed that this industry is great to talk to the pros. Yeah, there are some that you can't approach, but most you can and they are cool as hell and will help you out with anything that you need.

Bottom line is practice. That is what makes one faster.

Run what classes are offered. Complain all you want about factory stock guys, but if that is all that they run in their area, that is what they will do. That is how they get faster. They can practice on their own all the time, but they need practice in race situations. This might be part of the reason why american drivers have a hard time keeping up with the europeans in mod TC rubber classes. The american drivers have no one to race against at home. They only get to practice against themselves...

I travel for work and have to be prepared to race any class, and I pretty much suck in most of them. The people are what are keeping me in it. Everywhere I go, people are always willing to help (from setups to lending out pit tables and extention cords.) Most seem happy to have another new racer around. The hobby is small, money isn't there. We always need to cater to new drivers, but have to remember the racers as well. Sportsman and spec classes are great to bridge racers from bashers. A well run race program can adjust their program and cater to everyone. Take advantage of the hardest (and most expensive) marketing aspect that exists. Getting people in the door.

National events are for everyone. I love going just to see the pros and watching them run. Sometimes I compete and some I don't. Even coming in last is one of the best vacations that I can have. Yeah I spent money, but my tire bills are more fun to buy that Disney tickets. If you can't afford to go, then don't.

Its a hobby and it needs to keep going. Cater to what trends are hip, and take advantage of the "cool" factor that we offer. The ability to adapt is what will keep it going.

That's all I got...

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Old 06-18-2007, 09:37 AM   #110
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One thing that scares me is just about everyone is selling out to get ready for the new 'Brushless Era'. Batteries, Turbo Bl's, Motors, nothing is bringing any money. I seen a national champion for oval sell the motors he won with, and no one would give him anything for his lot. Whats the deal? Are people that scared of brushed and yesteryear products? I just dont understand, maybe im the only one who thinks brushless is messing things up around here.
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Old 06-18-2007, 09:59 AM   #111
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It will only a matter of time before your motor tuner`s just sell brushless....


Problems is what will call um then ?

Motor Supplier`s ?]

Motor R Us ?

Ooo !

I know !

Cheaper Motor`s !!!!!
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Old 06-18-2007, 10:03 AM   #112
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The same issues that plagued indoor carpet are starting to catch up to 1/8 off road - big budgets resulting in nothing more than a declining rate of return for those making the investment. Look for 1/8 to stall out very soon.

It doesnt matter what tires, batteries, and motors are being used or what the pros are doing. The future of RC will be pretty much the same as it is now: a fringe hobby loaded with hardcore racers that arent much fun to race against. (Like the guy who said we're all going to be racing against the same 20 guys we race against every weekend).

The only way for RC to break out of its current state is for it to look more like Bowling or skiing. What if tracks were open daily 10-10 and offered rental cars to people for $25/hr so the average guy and 4-5 of his friends could just go to the track and have a race?

That could very well be possible with 8000-10,000 mah lipos and modestly performing brushless motors. Put them on an oval or simple road course and let them have at it and get them in and out of there in an hour.

Its not out of the question that you could average 25 entries a day @ 25/ea = 625/day - 6 days a week = $3750 - 50 weeks a year = $187,500.

You may differ with the numbers, but, you get idea.
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Old 06-18-2007, 10:16 AM   #113
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I'm kind of surprised there isn't an indestructible car kit out there intended for use as a rental. Remember the old days when you could race R/C cars at the fair and stuff? Those were fun. Make them a little faster, and maybe a little more interesting and you could have a winner. I know some clubs like Fastkats do well with rentals. Ours is starting to experiment with it, too.
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Old 06-18-2007, 10:26 AM   #114
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Tough vehicles for rentals:
Traxxas Rustler $160 for RTR and it's built like a tank. I know it's a truck and not a car, but for the rental crowd, that's fine.

Tamiya TL01 - it's a car and built like a tank.

I think the rental idea is a good one if you are looking at RC as entertainment (like bowling or skiing).

I guess that's the big question, do we want "the future of RC" to be entertainment or racing? How we answer that question will determine what the next steps should be.

I've raced NASCAR simulators, and some of us have probably gone to Richard Petty's Driving Experience and driven a real race car, but it's viewed as entertainment, not racing.
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Old 06-18-2007, 10:56 AM   #115
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Originally Posted by jiml View Post

When pro level drivers run stock at their local tracks because there is no mod class, what's the sense?
This doesnt help, I totally agree, but sometimes (rare,but 1 factor) its because its a small indoor track and its just not practical to racing anything faster than a stock motor.

Ive been in the touring car scene since it started, and it is how much things have changed. (cells and motor especially) Only indoors I seem to be able to do well with a 19t, im not really sure why, apart from the grip levels may well be a lot better and more consistant.

Never really found a good setup to get into 19t outdoors, wherever i've gone racing.

Maybe this is a reason why some dont venture into 19t, as well as the increased wear on the car when you run spools etc.

Im sure there is much more to it than that though, far more.
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Old 06-18-2007, 11:02 AM   #116
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Can I give my newb view please?

I've been going to races since I was a kid and for the last 15 years or so, I've always wanted to race and yes, it is the cost that puts me off and the general lack of knowledge.

It is very daunting to look at the sport with fresh eyes and become so lost in it. There is a tremendous amount of options and it becomes confusing.

Track day rentals are a great idea. Have a bunch of cars ready to go and an entry level class just for them. Have the cars maintained by the shop and the more experienced racers there. I think it would help to keep the big guys connected to the new potential racers.

And, as a form of mentoring, have the guys that maintain or setup the car be there by the side of the new racer. I think it would help break the ice and ease the transition into racing.

On last Saturday's race, there was one racer, Gary, who was just completely dominating the Mini Cooper and he had a few of us watching him and wanting to talk to him. After the race and his marshalling duties were done, he came around to everyone that was new and watching and thrust a packet of info into out hands. It had info about getting started, shop info and the best thing in the packet was a breakdown of what cars and accessories with their costs to get started in each class. He also advertised an upcoming charity race and posted the race schedule for the year. All of the information I needed to get started was thrust into my hand whether I wanted it or not.

Taking the info he gave me,and that of others, I went home and began to look around the internet. That night I found a 4Tec on Craigslist with updated ESC, Trinity motor, extra parts, a battery charger and 2 bodies for $130. All I need are batteries and I'm set to race on Saturday.

Shameless self promotion is not a bad idea either. RC races always attract people throughout the day. Give them fliers, show them rentals, invite them into your store, get a few College cheerleaders to come out and a local BBQ place to bring a trailer full of food.

Now tell me that the smell of meat burning on a fire, beautiful girls and RC cars aren't going to get you some attention.
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Old 06-18-2007, 11:03 AM   #117
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That is, indeed, the question: to race or to entertain?

I hate to paint such a bleak picture, but, it's not looking so good for RC these days. As hardcore racing become less and less popular, there wont be enough people left to have meaningfull events to attend without traveling hundreds of miles.

There needs to be something between racing and bashing. Maybe less expensive timing systems is what we need to allow small clubs of 10-20 people to organize in parking lots and race casually and do whatever it is they want.

Casual racing? Is that even possible?
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Old 06-18-2007, 11:19 AM   #118
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Another reason most guys run stock there whole career is becuase that is what they know. Ive been running stock for a few years now, and I cant image why I would want to run mod if I have all of this stock knowledge. I mean lets face it what drivers do you know that have crossed from stock to mod that have ever done any good? I cant think of anyone myself, only those who switched to mod and now there back in stock due to loss's. There just like me, I race to win. So why get paid to lose?
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Old 06-18-2007, 11:43 AM   #119
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Too many classes with and too many people promoting classes that they can win in now.

Sedan has too many classes from motor to skill. I think that stock should be given to the beginners and let 19 and mod be open to anyone.
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Old 06-18-2007, 11:48 AM   #120
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Lets face it. Compare the average equipment to run sedan in its infancy to what it is now is just ridiculous not just in price but perception to possible new comers. When I first got back into this hobby everyone had thier car charger and maybe a discharge bulb, fast forward today and your local pit area looks like the NASA space starion. lol

Hopefully Brushless and Lipo will fix some of this.
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