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Old 03-09-2009, 06:07 PM   #1
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Default MUST GO FASTER!

Hi Everyone

I am hoping you can help me here... I just cant seem to get my car to go fast enough at my local track.

Here is the problem.. I am running with a AE TC3 RTR that I have upgraded almost everything... Titanium main shaft, Alum dog bones, upgraded bearings, alum shock towers and caps, upgraded bearings, 64 pitch gearing, GT7 speed control, 27t monster Stock, EP 4200 Nimh packs (1.25 volts at 30a dis).

For some reason I just cant keep up.. The race winners are getting about 39 laps and I am turning 35... and I am going as fast as I possibly can. I am geared up as high as possible, so I am pulling the trigger full throttle all the way around the track... and the motor is warm to hot coming off.

I've been driving for 5 - 6 years, so I am pretty sure my driving skills are acceptable. I realize that the fastest car doesnt always win the race.

But... I am getting frustrated. I almost feel like it has to be the equipment since I am now competing with TC5s and Xray T2s. I feel like I am bringing a Pinto to a Nascar race.

What do you guys think? Is it time to upgrade the car?

What do I upgrade to? I want something for on road and oval with the same car... I dont like Losi (I have a XXX-S, what a pain it is to repair)

Please share your recomendations...

Stick with the TC3 and upgrade something else?
Go with the TC5?
Xrays are awesome... but a little pricey! Which one? Would a T1 be OK or would I be in a similar position?

What about others that I have NO experience with... HPI, Yokomo, etc.

Thanks in advance!

Geo
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Old 03-09-2009, 06:59 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by EagleTa2 View Post

What do you guys think? Is it time to upgrade the car?
Only if you can race the whole 5 minutes w/o any crashes. Haven't you heard, slow is fast!
Seriously tho, Are you running the whole race clean, no crashes? If you are, then maybe try a one way on the front. All the fast guys are using them at my track. You can go faster out of the corners with it.
Larry.
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Old 03-09-2009, 07:07 PM   #3
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I would toss the monster stock (isn't that an offroad motor?) and try a CO27.
Also are you doing anything to prep the motor? Comm cutting, brush selection, springs, and proper shimming make a huge difference. Gearing may also have something to do with it...gearing to a certain temp is a good guideline but laptimes are what you are after...specifically consistent laptimes over the course of the race.

-rocky b
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Old 03-09-2009, 07:15 PM   #4
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I would toss the monster stock (isn't that an offroad motor?) and try a CO27.
-rocky b
Agreed. Since you haven't mentioned owning a dyno, I would pick up a good CO27 from one of the good motor tuners out there.

Unless of course brushless is allowed. Then you might want to pick up a Tekin RS speed control/motor combo and a hotwire interface.

Yeah, your car is a bit outdated but still very competitive for stock class racing.
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Old 03-09-2009, 10:26 PM   #5
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You are totally right... I forgot to mention about motor tuning.

Yes, I am still using brushed... and I believe the fastest guys are running brushless. As far as my motor is concerned... I am cutting the com (I am at the point where I can take .001 off per pass and leave a perfect finish). I replaced the brushes, toyed around with motor spring tensions and polished the armature ends to make sure there is nothing hanging up in the bushings.
About the only thing I have not done is zapped the magnets... I am not about to pluck the change down for a zapper...

I run the motors on my dyno after prepping and am running anywhere from 24k to 26k at 5.0v after prep. I thought that was pretty effective, but if I am all wrong or you guys think they should be faster let me know.

I've tried different tires to improve lap times, and I am having the closest time on cs27 slicks. (its what everyone else is using at the track)

What else? Oh yes... driving a clean heat. I am not going to say that there is never a mishap, but they are far and few between. To be honest with you my biggest problem is trying to tighten my line up to much, and I end up hitting a dot and scrubbing some speed there. The car was handling great up until this past weekend, where it was a little loose in the rear. Since the diffs are smooth, I think its time to rebuild the shocks and make sure they are putting down equal force.

I need to remember that this is just club racing for fun and a hobby store coupon... but it sure does get frustrating when you get lapped 4 times in 4 minutes....

Thanks for all the insight... please keep the help coming!

Geo
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Old 03-09-2009, 10:32 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by wingracer View Post
Agreed. Since you haven't mentioned owning a dyno, I would pick up a good CO27 from one of the good motor tuners out there.

Unless of course brushless is allowed. Then you might want to pick up a Tekin RS speed control/motor combo and a hotwire interface.

Yeah, your car is a bit outdated but still very competitive for stock class racing.
I disagree with dyno. But the car may be something to look at. My suggestion, have the fastest guy in the class race your car and tell you what he thinks. My problem used to be that I thought that I didn't have enough motor. It was actually usually a handling / driving problem. also the latest crop of 17.5 motors are very fast and consistent. Stock racing with brushed motors took a lot of com truing etc. if your headed in the com lathe direction I would actually suggest you get on ebay, get a used Sphere tc and motor for your class. and run that for the next couple seasons, you will spend a lot more time on chassis tuning instead which is where alot of the speed will come from. but start with the fast guy driving your car.. most guys are nice enough to test your car and let you know what they think. if he is still carving corners nicely and hauling ass.. its you..

cheers
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Old 03-09-2009, 10:36 PM   #7
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also make sure your car isn't tweeked.. but if your cutting coms etc i am pretty sure you would be checking that anyhow. Personally, I got a fair bit faster when I switched from a losi XXXs to an xray. I never could get the drivetrain on my tc3 as free as my xray, never got the losi or the associated to handle as well either. the obvious question is where do you get pulled the most, turn in, mid corner exit or on the straights? I know its kinda hard to tell till your almost the same speed. but figure that out if you can, I am STILL working on dissecting where i am slow or fast.
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Old 03-09-2009, 10:50 PM   #8
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I think what I feared the most might be coming true

Looks like for the time being I should tear the car down and go thru a rebuild... I did it on my sons TC3 and it performs like a dream... looks like Dads car is going to need a months worth of work next.

Hopefully that will increase handling speeds at least enough to help the next decision. I was just reading the thread on Tekin Rs Pro Brushless ESCs and started to salivate a little... but raw speed wont do me any good if I cant control it and handle it.

So, Like I said, I think I should rebuild the car first... then look into going BL or trading in for a new chassis.

I will have the fast guy drive my car and tell me what he thinks.. Sounds like a good idea - wish I had thought of it.

Also - I am definately getting caught at turn in and mid turn... pulling out of turn and down the straights I think I can keep up ok... But like you said, its really difficult to pin point where you are getting beaten. Is it your driving, your car, your batts, your electronics, or is the competition just better than you?

Thanks alot for all the help!

Keep the ideas coming... this is GREAT!

Geo
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Old 03-10-2009, 03:22 AM   #9
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What really helped for me was not tryong to go "faster", but to go smoother. I was often entering the corners too fast and jerking on the steering. I was hitting the apexes, but it wasn't fast. Now I'm still not fast, but I improved a lot by beeing smoother.

This is a quote from another forum:
Quote:
"Move the sticks/wheel and trigger like there are dampers attached to them."
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Old 03-10-2009, 04:56 AM   #10
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Too win in spec classes, You must have at least decent to prety good gear, Extreme Knowlege of everything to do with batts, motors, gearing, car setup, tyres, etc, and be a prety good driver a also.

Well at Clubs that have a lot of very good experienced drivers anyway...

I wish you well on your journey to be faster, Just remember you never stop learning and dont give up
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Old 03-10-2009, 05:17 AM   #11
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First of all, in your first post you mentioned all the titanium and aluminum upgrades on your car. I'd bet money that if you took a close look at the "fast guys" cars, they are pretty much running them the way they came, not hanging a bunch of heavy metal all over them. In a stock class, you don't want to carry any extra weight around. A free drivetrain on a light car and lots of practice is the formula for success.

Later on you mention you are seeing 24 to 26K RPM on your dyno... since you don't mention power, I have to assume you're using an rpm checker, and not a dyno. I can put a motor together for you that will do 40K on your machine and be a total dog on the track, no-load rpm is an almost meaningless thing to look at.

Best thing to do is go through the car, make sure e3very moving part is free and not binding, make sure the drivetrain is absolutely free (on a TC3, with the pinion removed, you should be able to give the spour gear a spin with your finger and see the wheels "coast" for at least ten seconds... even more if you really want to work at it.

While you're at it, take every piece of "bling" off the car, and put back the stock part if the biling isn't lighter than the stock part.

Get out and practice, and talk to some of the fast guys... let one drive your car, and see how his lap times are compared to yours. If your lap times with the car are slower, then it's not the car holding you back.

Every crash during a heat or main is a half a lap to a lap you'll lose. it doesn't take much crashint for an otherwise fast car to be three or four laps down by the end of five minutes.

One last thing.,.. 90% of setup is tires... get the right tires on and you're most of the way there.
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:01 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by leerjet1 View Post
Only if you can race the whole 5 minutes w/o any crashes. Haven't you heard, slow is fast!
Seriously tho, Are you running the whole race clean, no crashes? If you are, then maybe try a one way on the front. All the fast guys are using them at my track. You can go faster out of the corners with it.
Larry.

funny that everyone is talking dynos and HP and titanium before EagleTA2 has answered that question

I know it's going to sound very arrogant, but if you have a "decent" car (TC3 certainly qualifies as more than that) in "decent" shape (ie nothing bent/binding, that includes correct gear ratio and free tranny, shocks in good shape, non-tweaked car, and so on so forth), then compare your average to your faster lap time on a 5mn heat. If you're off by more than 0.5s, then don't bother upgrading cars

Trips' idea was good too - let a "pro" drive your car for 2 or 3 minutes and go check his lap times. if they are much lower than yours, hey, you just saved $400!

Don't underestimate a TC3. In the right hands, it can still keep up with 95% of the cars that are still out there.

Paul
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Old 03-10-2009, 08:54 AM   #13
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the HB cyclone is a good choice if you are running rubber tyre.
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Old 03-10-2009, 09:34 AM   #14
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The race winners are getting about 39 laps and I am turning 35... and I am going as fast as I possibly can.
How long are the races? 4 minute? 5 minutes? 6 minutes?

What type of track? Asphalt, Carpet?

let's figure it's Asphalt and 6 minutes - the guys running 39 laps would be around a 9.23 "Average" lap time, where as a 35 lap run would be averaging 10.28

More important than your total number of laps, how does the individual lap times compare to the fast guys.

You can use that to see if the car is on track (on the laps you are NOT smacking into stuff)

SMOOTH SMOOTH SMOOTH will make up more time on a Road Course track than probably anything else....but if you are running against Brushless, they are going to have motor consitency over you...

But, start by studying your individual lap times, and compare them against the fast guys...SEE where and how much you need to improve, and work on doing it ONE LAP at a time.

Practice with the fast guys, and see when and where they are pulling away from you. (Are they blowing you away on the straights - or outdriving you in the corners.)
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Old 03-10-2009, 09:38 AM   #15
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I agree with the posts above. TC3 is a very good car by any standards. Getting the tires right is again where I would start from. Talk to some of the fast guys at the track and see what they use. Also, you don't say if you use tire warmers. It is a must otherwise by the time you take to warm them up (about one lap) on the track, you're one lap behind and it's all downhill from there having to give way to the cars laping you. I too am a person who got later in life into the hobby and am clearly not as good at hand to eye coordination as some of the younger blokes, but with patience I got on the pace and am right up there at the same number of laps as everybody else.

I too get the feeling that your car's drivetrain is not as free as it should from what I read here, so I would check that first. Good electronics make a difference, but not substantial. Just make sure they can deliver (good esc capable of strong current, quick and reliable servo, fast radio, and that's pretty much it).

Good battery is also a must. Weak batteries will kill you. Learn what batteries are best, and how to use them, and you'll be happy.

With the motor however someone already pointed out the relation between motor, gearing and track. This is a triangle where the fast guys can help you. A torquey motor can give you qood acceleration everywhere and will be hard to beat on a technical track whereas a free revving motor is better on an open track. Once you have established what you need, go buy a good motor with a respectable dyno datasheet in the package and work at keeping it in top nick. If you get a nice printout of the power/efficiency/torque of your motor, you will know where you need to gear it to get the most out of it on your track. There is simply no backdoor to this. A good motor with no dyno data will just leave you second guessing. If you can't get a motor already measured at the factory, get one of your motors fully tested by someone with the experience to do it properly. that way you know what you have and it's a good starting point.

Checking where you are overtaken is not a sure fire idea to find what's wrong with your car. There may be nothing wrong with it. Likewise when someobody else drives your car (it's a very good idea, but don't take their comments for gospel). Some people will accept various trade-offs depending what suits them best. If you want to understand this, watch some of the races on youtube and you will see top racers like M. Reinhard, Andy Moore, etc and see their cars are not identical in behaviour. Some are faster out of the corner, some are faster into the corner, depending on technique, strategy, etc (when you start second you need a different strategy to when you start first on the grid, and so on). The latest Euro TC stage in Poland is a good lesson for this.

Last edited by niznai; 03-10-2009 at 10:40 AM.
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