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Old 01-07-2008, 08:57 AM   #481
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One major point that hasn't come up yet:

How does the B/L Lipo class change over effect the hobby shop and most of all the hobby shop race track combo?

Hobby shops, especially with race tracks need sales to existing racers not just new people.
So we all go BL and lipo, a BL will last what, a year or two and pretty much the same for lipo's. So the shop will sell a, as in one BL speedo, one BL motor, maybe two, one maybe two lipo's for a two year period per racer.
Now you don't need to buy a com lathe, com sticks, springs, brushes, motor master, motor spray, and at least a spare motor, maybe twice a year for motors, and you won't need a discharger anymore either, right?
That is a good portion of the shops income gone, what is going to replace the lost income? These race tracks aren't swimming in money and a lot are closing down.
Where ya gunna race?

Dawn should be able the chime in on this from first hand experience.

Just another aspect of BL/lipo to consider.
This is a major problem. How will struggling hobby shops make up for lost income?

Well there is this one aspect about BL and LiPo that nobody really thinks about, obscolesence. Right now, people buy new motors and batteries when they wear out or lose their "edge". With LiPo and BL, users will be buying new items regularly when a new better model is released.

For the past 10 years there has really only been one competitive stock motor mfg and a couple of battery mfgs at any one time. Now throw 6-7 BL motor mfs and an even greater number of LiPo mfgs, and you are going to see a very fast progression of technology and speed that will make TC manufacturers seems downright lazy with their new releases.
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Old 01-07-2008, 09:23 AM   #482
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regarding longer racing..
electric racing, in theory, would have to go the way of gas racing. shorter qualifiers, and relatively longer mains. This allows for the larger entries and smaller heats that many people enjoy but packs the mains at any level. Weekly racing can alter the time lengths like they normally do now. I can go to 3 different tracks for the same type of racing around here and times vary between 5 and 10 mins for heats and mains.
-

hobby shops will still have to sell..
replacement parts - cars might be slower but parts still wear/break, guys will still race with egos when they get side by side
bodies - they still dont last forever.. people like new paint jobs.. they like to try different bodies/wings.
batteries - they dont last forever, never will. Stranahan's threads discuss that in depth.
tires - those longer races will equate to more tire wear in some form or another.
bling bling - I can't believe i even said it. but that stuff will sell no matter what. (there will still be more to the hobby shop customer base than just racers)

For now, if the new guys get slow, they'll be more willing to stay racing and be around to buy more items instead of selling out and doing something else.

-
while OVER TIME brushes, springs, motor lathes, etc will dwindle it will still be around for awhile. If motor lathes and brush jigs and all that were so profitable why wouldn't the show cases at the hobby shop be STUFFED with them.. Half the time you buy brushes or springs from your LHS they aren't even in packaging - because packaging the item would cost more than any profit made from said items. (oh and lets not forget the "shazaam $N.nn for a pair of brushes, i'll go get these online!" syndrome that would come with any sort of increase)
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Old 01-07-2008, 09:35 AM   #483
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I also support changing electric class names to "something like" Sportsman, Intermediate, and Expert.
Keep Masters around. This is and always has seemed to be more on a Regional/Series level. We will always need a class for the waning Parents to race so they'll be more inclined to take their younger ones to the larger events. *gasp*

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Old 01-07-2008, 09:40 AM   #484
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Originally Posted by Rick Hohwart View Post
This is a major problem. How will struggling hobby shops make up for lost income?

Well there is this one aspect about BL and LiPo that nobody really thinks about, obscolesence. Right now, people buy new motors and batteries when they wear out or lose their "edge". With LiPo and BL, users will be buying new items regularly when a new better model is released.

For the past 10 years there has really only been one competitive stock motor mfg and a couple of battery mfgs at any one time. Now throw 6-7 BL motor mfs and an even greater number of LiPo mfgs, and you are going to see a very fast progression of technology and speed that will make TC manufacturers seems downright lazy with their new releases.
Thanks for your input Rick, that's one of the things I see too, motor and speedo of the week from 2 of the faster racers locally.
But that does kinda blow away the " BL is cheaper in the long run" theory.

Some may take my views as being negative, but being a mechanic and having been involved in SCCA sports car racing since a young age,
I learned to look for things that are wrong, and then find the cause of what made it go wrong and how to make it more durable.
Using the " replace whats broken" without diagnosing the problem leads to failure.
I don't want to see a patch job done at ROAR that will come back to bite them, and in the end, all of us.
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Old 01-07-2008, 10:11 AM   #485
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All very interesting suggestions, but how is ROAR going to integrate all this and still conform to IFMAR standards. I think a lot of what you guys want to do is far beyond what ROAR is really about. What you want to do locally is all fine but part of ROARs responsibilities is for a standardized race format that can be used regionally, nationally and on a world format.

I know some of you will say "we" have to set the standards, but some of what your'e asking is beyond what they (ROAR) are able to do, and if you ask them they will become just like some of the other defunct organizations, the IFMAR affiliation is a very powerfull alliance, don't throw it away.

Ask guys like Hustings and Reedy they can give you more insight on how this whole affiliation works first hand.
IFMAR is all Open Mod racing so ROAR is already compliant.
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Old 01-07-2008, 01:33 PM   #486
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The problem I have with power limiting profiles is that opens the door to "cheater profiles". This is where the profile would start out in limited mode to pass inspection then ramp up to a faster mode, not fast enough to be noticibly faster but fast enough to give an edge, then ramp back down at the end to once again pass inspection. This happened in paintball when the markers went from mechanical firing to electronic firing. The problem was so bad that the only way around the problem was to legalize everything.
Except this would be a beginner class, not something nearly as serious as the current "stock" class. I can't think of a motivation to cheat. Plus this is a profile that would be added by the manufacturers, not something that anyone without vast knowledge of electronics and ESCs would be able to mess with. I also don't see any motivation with one manufacturer trying to make their profile more aggressive than anothers since the class it would be intended for would be people that have a hard time getting around a track cleanly.
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Old 01-07-2008, 01:56 PM   #487
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Originally Posted by Rick Hohwart View Post
This is a major problem. How will struggling hobby shops make up for lost income?

Well there is this one aspect about BL and LiPo that nobody really thinks about, obscolesence. Right now, people buy new motors and batteries when they wear out or lose their "edge". With LiPo and BL, users will be buying new items regularly when a new better model is released.

For the past 10 years there has really only been one competitive stock motor mfg and a couple of battery mfgs at any one time. Now throw 6-7 BL motor mfs and an even greater number of LiPo mfgs, and you are going to see a very fast progression of technology and speed that will make TC manufacturers seems downright lazy with their new releases.
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While I think that is a legitimate concern I think there are a few things that will offset it. Hopefully the new cheaper form of racing will draw more people to the track, and more racers means more sales. So a hobbyshop might sell $3,000 less in stock motors over the cource of a year, hopefully they have 15 more new racers that come in and buy a brushles system for $250, a new car, charger, transmitter, the works... You'll also have 15 new racers buying all the other items any racers will go through, tire dressing, tires, and car parts.

Also, I know if have a limit as to how much I can spend on my hobbies. I'm not made of money... If I'm not spending so much money on battery packs, motors, brushes, whatever, that frees up more funds for other things. Maybe I'd get that 1/12th scale car to mess around with or run a new class, maybe I'd be more willing to buy a new chassis more often when a new model comes out. In fact, I know I'd be. After having all my stuff stolen I'm cutting corners to get back into racing. Instead of getting that new brushless system I want I'm settling for a used GTX. Instead of buying that RDX PHI I want I'm using the RDX that was sitting in my house on a table because I wasn't racing it at the time. Instead of getting the CE GFX charger I want I bought a Checkpoint charger. I think you get the picture...

I agree with IKE on this one. I have some friends that won't race because it cost to much to be competetive. You have to buy new batteries, this motor for this class and this motor for this class... oh ya, these springs for this, this color for that, these brushes for this and these for that...

They want to race but can't justify the spending part. They have the money but I guess are smarter with it. Since bl and lipo, many people have come out to race because they can for less money and less head ache. The sport/hobby is easier for them to understand. I really feel what the shops will lose in some sales with gain it in other sales. Plus we get more people into the hobby, if it's easier for them to understand the more fun they will have.
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Old 01-07-2008, 01:58 PM   #488
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Except this would be a beginner class, not something nearly as serious as the current "stock" class. I can't think of a motivation to cheat. Plus this is a profile that would be added by the manufacturers, not something that anyone without vast knowledge of electronics and ESCs would be able to mess with. I also don't see any motivation with one manufacturer trying to make their profile more aggressive than anothers since the class it would be intended for would be people that have a hard time getting around a track cleanly.
Maybe the manufacturer's could somehow add a profile that could be modified by a hand held programmer before one goes out to race, in the tech line. This could cause more problems by having all the different manufacturer's to have some common profile adjustment feature though. This should take care of the possible cheating, just like checking weight and wing before going out for a race, the speed control profile will be set in. Just how likely is this to happen?
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Old 01-07-2008, 02:03 PM   #489
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Except this would be a beginner class, not something nearly as serious as the current "stock" class. I can't think of a motivation to cheat. Plus this is a profile that would be added by the manufacturers, not something that anyone without vast knowledge of electronics and ESCs would be able to mess with. I also don't see any motivation with one manufacturer trying to make their profile more aggressive than anothers since the class it would be intended for would be people that have a hard time getting around a track cleanly.
Nobody could think of a motivation for manufacturers to cheat in paintball either (players are a different story) but it happened. Any time there is competition some people will be motivated to cheat. I've ran silver can classes in the past where no one tech'd the cars and inevitably we've had to resort to teching because someone would put in something faster. Look at the average person starting out...they are fixated with more speed. Anyone who has worked at a hobby shop for any length of time has seen it...guy gets his first RC and immediately he wants to drop the fastest motor he can afford into it, reguardless of if he is ready for it or not. New racers often are the same way, so if they see a way they can go faster they will. The motivation for manufacturers is easy...sales. If they can make money off of it they will, that is their job. If you give people a way they can cheat, gain an advantage, and get away with it...people will buy it. Beginners are out there to compete just like the more experienced racers...just because they are in a beginner class doesn't change that. Many beginners don't even think of themselves as a beginner. They think if they buy the right equipment they'll go to the track and be just as competitive as guys racing 5, 10, 15 years or more. And even the ones that do acknowledge being a beginner still think they can handle more power then they actually can. Heck many experienced racers think that too (myself often included).
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Old 01-07-2008, 02:23 PM   #490
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Maybe the manufacturer's could somehow add a profile that could be modified by a hand held programmer before one goes out to race, in the tech line. This could cause more problems by having all the different manufacturer's to have some common profile adjustment feature though. This should take care of the possible cheating, just like checking weight and wing before going out for a race, the speed control profile will be set in. Just how likely is this to happen?
Even if that were to happen there are still plenty of ways electronically around that. Program in a certain trigger sequence or steering sequence and the ESC switches modes...then hold the brake for say 20 seconds and it switches back. Those are the kind of things that happened in paintball and were never able to be tech'd because of it.

I don't mean to be the cynical "people are bad" poster here. But I've been a race director a long time now and seen a lot...not to mention things like this have allready happened in another competitive sport/hobby type industry.
We need to be proactive and prepared in case the same thing starts to happen in this industry.
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Old 01-07-2008, 02:54 PM   #491
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All these ideas of programable limiters sound good but seriously we are talking about beginners here. Look at some of the questions that pop up in RCtech alone and you will know that this is not a practical solution.

Just slow down the entry level motors which happens to be stock and don't include this program in the national levels so that spending and the mentallity of national drivers or traveling racers don't trickle down to the local scene......

Keep it simple and it should be fine......

Another thing I wanted to ask is when tracks submit a bid for nationals, does thier track have to meet a criteria as for track lenght, width, and overall dimensions..... Just asking because everyone is talking about laptimes between 13.5, 10.5, and open mod being real close and it makes me wonder if some of these tracks are just too small for open mod.......
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Old 01-07-2008, 03:10 PM   #492
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Nobody could think of a motivation for manufacturers to cheat in paintball either (players are a different story) but it happened. Any time there is competition some people will be motivated to cheat. I've ran silver can classes in the past where no one tech'd the cars and inevitably we've had to resort to teching because someone would put in something faster. Look at the average person starting out...they are fixated with more speed. Anyone who has worked at a hobby shop for any length of time has seen it...guy gets his first RC and immediately he wants to drop the fastest motor he can afford into it, reguardless of if he is ready for it or not. New racers often are the same way, so if they see a way they can go faster they will. The motivation for manufacturers is easy...sales. If they can make money off of it they will, that is their job. If you give people a way they can cheat, gain an advantage, and get away with it...people will buy it. Beginners are out there to compete just like the more experienced racers...just because they are in a beginner class doesn't change that. Many beginners don't even think of themselves as a beginner. They think if they buy the right equipment they'll go to the track and be just as competitive as guys racing 5, 10, 15 years or more. And even the ones that do acknowledge being a beginner still think they can handle more power then they actually can. Heck many experienced racers think that too (myself often included).
I don't think you're getting the gist of the class idea. This isn't going to be for people that just want to go fast. Those people can be silly and jump right into whatever faster class they want. This class would be for someone that is grounded enough to realize they're just starting out and will need practice before they're good at driving and ready to go faster.

For instance, the Novak race had a sportsman class that used 17.5 BL motors this weekend. I believe many of those systems were loaners so people could run the class. If they had been able to use the same motor that's the stadard for the slower class in most parts of the country, the 13.5, I bet there would have been more motivation for people to buy their systems rather than get a loaner.

Starting out as a beginner and being able to feel your way around and then being able to move up to a faster class without spending any more money that you've already spent getting into the hobby seems like a great motivator for people to start out in a slower more beginner friendly class. Someone could simply try it for one night and then decide they want to go faster. All they have to do it hit a button and they're going faster.

The people out there that simply want to have a fast car are going to get that fast car no matter what ROAR or the LHS tells them. However, there are a lot of peple that are intimidated by the speeds of a 13.5 and a perfectly willing to accept that it's too much for them to handle. This class would be for those people. Slowing the stock class down for all parties to make it more beginner friendly will end up with a lot of current drivers being disappointed in the speeds.
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Old 01-07-2008, 03:18 PM   #493
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Just slow down the entry level motors which happens to be stock and don't include this program in the national levels so that spending and the mentallity of national drivers or traveling racers don't trickle down to the local scene......
BINGO!

However, that is why the option of the sportsman/stock level rules are left open for the local clubs to define. Where I feel that these rules should be included in the rule book as guidelines to the club level tracks, it should also include a section that prefaces the guidelines that the rules are meant as a starting point for the clubs and can be modified by race directors as needed.

The lowest level of racing that the rule book provides guidelines for should not be raced at the national level races.
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Old 01-07-2008, 03:34 PM   #494
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I don't think you're getting the gist of the class idea. This isn't going to be for people that just want to go fast. Those people can be silly and jump right into whatever faster class they want. This class would be for someone that is grounded enough to realize they're just starting out and will need practice before they're good at driving and ready to go faster.

For instance, the Novak race had a sportsman class that used 17.5 BL motors this weekend. I believe many of those systems were loaners so people could run the class. If they had been able to use the same motor that's the stadard for the slower class in most parts of the country, the 13.5, I bet there would have been more motivation for people to buy their systems rather than get a loaner.

Starting out as a beginner and being able to feel your way around and then being able to move up to a faster class without spending any more money that you've already spent getting into the hobby seems like a great motivator for people to start out in a slower more beginner friendly class. Someone could simply try it for one night and then decide they want to go faster. All they have to do it hit a button and they're going faster.

The people out there that simply want to have a fast car are going to get that fast car no matter what ROAR or the LHS tells them. However, there are a lot of peple that are intimidated by the speeds of a 13.5 and a perfectly willing to accept that it's too much for them to handle. This class would be for those people. Slowing the stock class down for all parties to make it more beginner friendly will end up with a lot of current drivers being disappointed in the speeds.

Oh I completely understand. But what I am saying is 2 fold...first off that is not the only type of person that is going to end up in the class...and second is that people do cheat at any level of competition.
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Old 01-07-2008, 03:39 PM   #495
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All these ideas of programable limiters sound good but seriously we are talking about beginners here. Look at some of the questions that pop up in RCtech alone and you will know that this is not a practical solution.

Just slow down the entry level motors which happens to be stock and don't include this program in the national levels so that spending and the mentallity of national drivers or traveling racers don't trickle down to the local scene......

Keep it simple and it should be fine......

Another thing I wanted to ask is when tracks submit a bid for nationals, does thier track have to meet a criteria as for track lenght, width, and overall dimensions..... Just asking because everyone is talking about laptimes between 13.5, 10.5, and open mod being real close and it makes me wonder if some of these tracks are just too small for open mod.......
Every racer has to set a speed control when they first setup their car. I don't see how them setting to to profile 6, or whatever would make things any different from what it is now.
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