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Old 12-17-2009, 12:51 PM   #226
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Originally Posted by bentgear View Post
The only way to compare the true cost of brushed vs brushless would be to break it down to money spent per minutes of track use or races run.

Brushless wins big time as far as i am concerned.
The cost I'm seeing at our track is that the new ESCs are outperforming the motors and wearing them out more quickly than desired (same type of problem brushed had). It looks like Novak is onto something with the color coded replaceable stators approved by ROAR... almost looks too good to be true...
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Old 12-17-2009, 12:52 PM   #227
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Motors really aren't the issue. Changing the timing on motors is mechanical, and the full range of timing options are already there on what we all own & use. It really doesn't do much but change the power band, but either way, it's an adjustment that's probably not going to change, or really be a big deal.

The real issue is with the ESC software, and the fact that we continue to find new ways to make slow motors faster. I think the idea of the manufacturers working together to create a "stock spec" profile that's as even as possible across manufacturers is the way to go. And while you're at it, make the ESC do something visually different when you're on this profile. Maybe make one of your multi-color LED's turn a unique color, or something, but make it easy to tech.

Now, I can hear the arguments against this, and how it's impossible to tech. And you're right, if manufacturers wanted to be sneaky, they could release firmware that would appear "legal" but actually isn't. Beyond hooking ESC's to a scope for tech, there's no way to counter this. And that's probably always going to be a problem, but it doesn't mean we can't move in the right direction for 99% of the racing where secret firmware won't matter.

So, Novak, Tekin, Castle, KO, I'm looking at YOU. Get together and design a spec profile for your ESC's that doesn't burn up motors, and is as even as possible across brands. This isn't a perfect solution, but most racing in the world is based on rules, not tech, so you just make a rule locally that says, "your ESC must run the 'stock spec' profile" to be in this class. And that solves things for so many of us.


For people without updatable ESC's, you might have to ask them to use a lower profile until they're ready to upgrade. And for tech at big races, you might have to rely on the manufacturers to not cheat. If a company or one of its reps is caught using illegal firmware, ban them and their racers for a year. It's not a perfect solution by any means, but it could go a long way toward slowing things back down, and at least easing the pain at club races where it matters the most.
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Old 12-17-2009, 01:03 PM   #228
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The price limitations on brushed motors were written way back in the beginning of RC racing. Those rules were written by ex-slot car racers who saw slot car racing die as a result of new very expensive motors that lasted one run. Limiting the cost meant you could not use "rare earth" magnets, which are a big jump from ferrite magnets. Remember those motors were much slower than today.

Brushless motors need stronger magnets to work, so they are more expensive to make. The manufacturers could not match the price point of brushed motors because of that and other manufacturing processes. All brushed motors are priced the same because it costs just as much to make a 21.5 as it does a 3.5. And really the 21.5 needs more material (that many more turns of wire in the stator).

None of this stuff is easy. That's why I laugh at people who think they can do a better job than ROAR.
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Old 12-17-2009, 01:26 PM   #229
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Slot car racing is a good example of the same problem never going away. I agree that right now it is more about ESC and less about motor. I agree it is not easy, but I do think it is worth throwing around ideas.

What about this: a group like ROAR works with industry to build an open source esc profile and hardware design. The standard would have to be so specific that the manufacturers would download the "open source" firmware and install it on their ESC. The ESC hardware would have to conform to a strict hardware spec. Limits would be built in so that that output current is limited. The current sensor wire would be expanded to include a temperature sensor. The ESC would shut down if the temperature exceeds 150 degrees.

Then the advertising wars would be all about who builds the most reliable ESC with the least internal resistance. The amperage limits would negate "battery wars" because the ESC would be programmed to only give so much amperage at any given point in the power band. Timing would be fixed at the speed control. Then we could look at fixing the timing on the motor...
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Old 12-17-2009, 02:04 PM   #230
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That's not a bad idea, but I don't know if the manufacturers would all work with ROAR. Sure you have Novak and Tekin, but Advanced Electronics is a small company in Sweden. I'm not sure how much input they would have unless they devoted time to it (remember, time=money).

Consider this: Let's say ROAR decides right here right now the Black Diamond Speed control is banned competely. 30 seconds later someone would post "come to our race, we allow the Black Diamond." Rules have to be universally accepted, or they're useless.

Disclaimer: As far as I know ROAR has no intention of banning any speed control.
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Old 12-17-2009, 02:14 PM   #231
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That's not a bad idea, but I don't know if the manufacturers would all work with ROAR. Sure you have Novak and Tekin, but Advanced Electronics is a small company in Sweden. I'm not sure how much input they would have unless they devoted time to it (remember, time=money).
True, but you'd really only need the big ones to buy into it. If they could get LRP, Novak, and Tekin on board those three would build and publish the spec. Smaller manufacturers could then take the spec and build to it if they wanted to compete in the "stock" class.

Sort of the same thing as how all the paging companies got together and built standardized XML communication protocols. The big players sent resources to meetings and to help build it. The "little guys" could conference call in to the big meetings I'm sure to keep up with what was going on.

I'm sure there's never been collaboration like that in the RC hobby industry, they can't even agree on a balance connector, but there's a first time for everything.
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Old 12-17-2009, 04:05 PM   #232
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I've been thinking about this, and Taylor just pointed it out...

Which is the bigger problem, the fact that this technology is available?

Or, the fact that this technology is very expensive?

Could it be that electric RC racing has finally hit the price ceiling?
....when a sedan chassis costs almost as much as 1/8 nitro chassis............yes........ i think you SMASHED the price ceiling..........
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Old 12-17-2009, 06:57 PM   #233
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The real issue is with the ESC software, ......."stock spec" profile .... So, Novak, Tekin, Castle, KO, I'm looking at YOU.
Syndr0me, I think this is the best idea that I have seen you put out there. This would work. Just like the mfg's wind the motors to meet a spec, the profile must meet it as well.
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Old 12-18-2009, 05:41 AM   #234
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+1.

(IMHO) at the moment, esc manufacturers have been looking at making everything faster in their own way in their "profiles", software or hardware created, and rightly so.

However, when that happens, we see the end result.

One set of rules "over the whole field" to work on sounds like a much better option for a given class to grow

GM also need a look in here too though, as do LRP....
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Old 12-18-2009, 08:16 AM   #235
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As I posted upthread, Novak already offers a 79.99 (street price) stock/spec controller. No timing, no PC programmability. No tampering, or cheating potential. No profit......

Spec motors, hand wound are more expensive to manufacture; they have more wire (copper fill) and take much longer to wind. Our 25.5 is the most expensive wind we offer.

When we first introduced our brushless motors (after many years of design, tooling, R&D and engineering expenses) racers said "it wasn't fair" to allow a single company to monopolize the BL market. Sometimes other companies do not want to take the risk until a market is established.

We were also the first motor mfg to offer higher wind, spec BL motors----13.5, 17.5, 21.5 and 25.5.
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Old 12-18-2009, 08:30 AM   #236
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One more thing, if esc manufacturers have to design a controller for under 99.99, or 79.99 (S/P), without timing and PC programmability, then it shouldn't really be necessary to further limit what the esc can do; let each company offer the best (stand-alone, spec branded) product possible.

Manufacturers could then compete for this segment by offering the most full-featured esc possible under these constraints:

~ price limited
~ on-board programming, only
~ no advanced timing
~ stand-alone controller

This way the entry-level events could attract new racers for a more affordable up-front cost; the more experienced racers could continue to spend a fortune on the most advanced electronics available.

PS: I don't recall Novak ever offering a controller that cost over @200.00 street price. Even our upcoming Kinetic should cost @199.99.
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Old 12-18-2009, 09:16 AM   #237
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As I posted upthread, Novak already offers a 79.99 (street price) stock/spec controller. No timing, no PC programmability. No tampering, or cheating potential. No profit......

Spec motors, hand wound are more expensive to manufacture; they have more wire (copper fill) and take much longer to wind. Our 25.5 is the most expensive wind we offer.

When we first introduced our brushless motors (after many years of design, tooling, R&D and engineering expenses) racers said "it wasn't fair" to allow a single company to monopolize the BL market. Sometimes other companies do not want to take the risk until a market is established.

We were also the first motor mfg to offer higher wind, spec BL motors----13.5, 17.5, 21.5 and 25.5.



Novak was definitely the pioneer in brushless for the car market and has offered and incredible entry level spec packages. Now can we take this a step further?? Lets have sanctioning bodies, clubs, whoever create a Havoc class. Just like in the beginning Novak was the only game in town. So why not start that again. If it takes off I guarantee other manufacturers will follow suite. If it doesn't take off then we can stop with all these types of threads because it will show what the interest is in a truly spec class.

Yes there will be the initial outlay of cash...but a Havoc cost the same as the motor $79. And of you get a Havoc system...you pay about $150.

So someone needs to get it done!!!

For myself I will stay in the current classes...timed to the hilt.
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Old 12-18-2009, 09:19 AM   #238
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Read through this thread. I've been involved with r/c racing since the late '70s. This same cycle has repeated itself over and over and over and over agian. One question, who ever said racing is fair??? It's competition plain and simple. The key to keeping things "fair" is all about agreement at the local level amongst the racers, not standards set for the masses.
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Old 12-18-2009, 09:21 AM   #239
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Novak has always been a leader in the RC industry, and not just RC cars. How many people know Bob Novak is a member of the AMA Hall of Fame?

The reason most of the original ROAR rules concerning brushless came from Novak is because Novak was the only company willing to work with ROAR.
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Old 12-18-2009, 09:24 AM   #240
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Originally Posted by Taylorm View Post
....when a sedan chassis costs almost as much as 1/8 nitro chassis............yes........ i think you SMASHED the price ceiling..........
That's why I swore off touring car a while ago. And why I'm seriously considering 1/8 scale for next summer.
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