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Old 01-15-2010, 07:48 PM   #136
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What a great Friday night read.....it's Nitro practice night...needed something to do.

When I first started racing the only classes offered were Stock Sedan (rubber tires), 19t (foam), and 1/12 (open motor). Every class was loaded and fun. We didnt care if a driver was sponsored....just hoped that the stars/plannets aligned correctly so we could win or he broke.

Fast forward a few years and said On-Road track is closed. Nearest one is 2.5 hours away. So I make the jump to Off-Road 3 years later.

The same problem exists. People are in favor of making classes just so they can win something. Come on! At a local, read club level event, the focus shouldnt be on making sure there are at least 5 people to make a "New" class. The focus should be on making it fun for people to play with their toy cars! The "team" guys are there to help people and to help promote a product. On a "club" level its a sponsored guys JOB to help!

If you are wanting to attend a larger race, then I feel it is a must to seperate the wheat from the chaft. Most (and I say "most") sponsored guys are sponsored because of their efforts on the track. They earned the right to be sponsored. If they arent fast enough to be sponsored then they need to step up thier game!

I look at the results from the 2009 ROAR Off-Road Electric Nats. Doug Yunker, Super Stock Truck Nat Champ, runs at the same track I do. He is a Associated Team driver who EARNED the right to be a Team driver. He's fast and super nice to talk to about setups. But he is on a different level when it comes to driving. I've seen people put away thier trucks/buggys and grab a Slash because he is running in thier class. At a local level I wouldnt even consider asking him to run a different class than 13.5 truck. But at an event like the ROAR Nats I feel its a must.

In the ROAR Off-Road Nats the class for non sponsored drivers is Stock. Any driver can run any class but I feel sponsored drivers should be held to run the Super Stock or Mod class. Let the newer, less talented drivers run the Stock class.

It isnt a Motor, Batter, ESC war. Being a newer driver with the best equipment doesnt make you a faster driver...it means you crash faster and spend even more money on buying spare parts! Spare parts prices...thats a topic I want a piece of!!!
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Old 01-15-2010, 07:59 PM   #137
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Pro drivers/what ever racing/qualifing/etc with non-pro like me.. If I am with a fast/pro driver in a qualifier I would just as soon not ever run in that qualifier until after the resort. And that exactly what I did 2 years ago at the Birds. A very good racer was in my first round and all he did was bitch/swear/complain at the other racers in the qualifier. Get out of the way the leader coming up.... And he was not very nice about it either. I pulled my car because it was not worth hearing him and his mouth running off...

Just another point in the pro vs Joes racing in the same class.
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Old 01-15-2010, 08:24 PM   #138
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I totally agree also with Jim and Paul.. Today 17.5 is NO place for a True Sportsman to enter and learn in this hobby with todays speeds. ROAR and Clubs should just bite the Bullet earley and Switch Sportsman to 21.5 NOW before the Year gets too far started and let NEW racers feel more relaxed trying to learn how to drive there car .
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Tekin also supports this idea. These rules are for ‘Sportsman Stock’, not 17.5 ‘stock’ classes in general.

I think we all agree 17.5 has also gotten too fast for beginners, and for many racers skilled at what was stock speed. Stock racing is an art in itself when you are lacking power and have to carry speed and drive smooth. We are all talking about that problem as well.

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Right now 17.5 is commonly the slowest class in TC at most tracks. It is now Very fast and in my opinion too fast for someone that is just starting to race. I think that the point is that their is no place for someone to come in, spend 600$ or more and not feel like they waisted a paycheck as soon as they put it down for racing, to me "not waisting a paycheck" means that every car in that class is slow enough that even a beginner can see their potential, even if that is just running down the straight away at similar speeds to their more experienced compitition. Im not saying that replacing 17.5 is the answer but it is a problem now when that is the so called "entry level class".
+1

We've recently re-opened a track that died partially because of this issue. Our second biggest class right now (and growing fast) is our spec Cup Racer class that uses brushed motors that stay at the track and there are no aftermarket parts allowed on the car.

We have people that walked in off the street buy one, and race it and have a great time. We've gotten people that haven't put a car on the ground in 15 years coming in to run these cars because it's FUN!!! They look like real cars and they are fast enough to be challenging but slow enough for the beginner to handle and again most of all they are fun. They draw the most spectators from the pits to watch.

We need more spec classes like this!
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Old 01-15-2010, 08:25 PM   #139
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And since I am on the subject, I spend a small fortune on this hobby each year, just ask the people I race with and my local hobby shops. People like me are the ones that keep this hobby going, not the sponsored racers. I am willing to bet I give away more parts/etc free to the new/local people in the hobby than any sponsored racer does.

The bottom line is the track owers, the companies and hobby shops had better start listening to what we have to say or this hobby will die a slow and painful death.

And and the reason for the rant is my lovely wifey-poo was wondering why I am still racing, because she has noticied that I am not enjoying the hobby as much as I used too and perhaps I should find a different hobby that I would enjoy....
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Last edited by Nova F1 Racer; 01-15-2010 at 08:37 PM. Reason: final comment?
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Old 01-15-2010, 08:41 PM   #140
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The bottom line is the track owers, the companies and hobby shops had better start listening to what we have to say or this hobby will die a slow and painful death.
I think you nailed it there. Especially the track owners.

I think I will stick to RC because it pulled me out of WOW.
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Old 01-15-2010, 09:21 PM   #141
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I thought Brushless and Lipo was going to make everything more equal, and easier for the average joe to compete, with the faster guys.

What is wrong.
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Old 01-15-2010, 09:35 PM   #142
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Originally Posted by Nova F1 Racer View Post

The bottom line is the track owers, the companies and hobby shops had better start listening to what we have to say or this hobby will die a slow and painful death.

.
This hobby has been dying a slow and painful death when I started in the mid-80s, it'll still be dying the same slow, painful death when we've all moved on to something else. We always talk about growing the hobby but it's always been about the same size. Those of us that talk about the glory days are just remembering back to a time when we were surprised about the size of a given race.
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Old 01-15-2010, 09:36 PM   #143
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Originally Posted by BigTrucks View Post
I thought Brushless and Lipo was going to make everything more equal, and easier for the average joe to compete, with the faster guys.

What is wrong.
Things are more equal (assuming you keep up with the technology). In that regard it is easier for the average joe to compete. You can buy off the shelf what the pros use and configure it to work like theirs. I don't think anyone suggested it would make everyone better drivers!
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Old 01-15-2010, 09:37 PM   #144
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As posted earlier:

We have people that walked in off the street buy one, and race it and have a great time. We've gotten people that haven't put a car on the ground in 15 years coming in to run these cars because it's FUN!!! They look like real cars and they are fast enough to be challenging but slow enough for the beginner to handle and again most of all they are fun. They draw the most spectators from the pits to watch.

They have fun without going to a national event, "What a concept."
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Old 01-15-2010, 10:37 PM   #145
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So, I've been following this thread for the last day or so, and frankly, I'm surprised at the number of responses and the emotions of some of the responders.

First off, this is about the talent of the drivers, so if you're whining about speedos / motors / batteries, you didn't really understand Ernie's letter, and you need more practice driving.

Second, I think his letter is on point regarding the bigger / regional events. I don't think he is trying to regulate the local / weekly races. There are a couple of sponsored guys at my local track, and they're a blessing. They help with setup (regardless of what you drive), driving lines, maintain the track, and really just help to make the night go smoothly. If they had to be separate, they'd be running in a race of 2-3 people. On a weekly race, it makes me better to try and follow their lines (after they've lapped me).

Maybe I run at the best track in the country, but the sponsored guys at my track are awesome, and it would be stupid to make them run against each only each other on a weekly basis.

It seems to me, based upon Ernie's letter, that there is a history of sponsored drivers taking advantage of how some classes are regulated at the bigger events so that they can put W's in their pocket. It makes sense to regulate it at the bigger races. This letter isn't about changing your weekly race.

I go to my weekly race for the competition, the camaraderie, the fun, and the night away from my wife and kids. If we can only field on heat of mod buggy, I don't want the sponsored guy to have to sit out the race because he's sponsored. My goal isn't to win each week, it's to get better and burn off some stress. If you race at a track with sponsored drivers and your weekly goal is to win, you either need to get really good, really fast, or adjust your expectations.

Again, Ernie's letter is right on point for big races, and is certainly not trying to change the weekly racing format. On a weekly race, you need to make classes for what shows up.

My .02.
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Old 01-15-2010, 10:42 PM   #146
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Originally Posted by Nova F1 Racer View Post
Pro drivers/what ever racing/qualifing/etc with non-pro like me.. If I am with a fast/pro driver in a qualifier I would just as soon not ever run in that qualifier until after the resort. And that exactly what I did 2 years ago at the Birds. A very good racer was in my first round and all he did was bitch/swear/complain at the other racers in the qualifier. Get out of the way the leader coming up.... And he was not very nice about it either. I pulled my car because it was not worth hearing him and his mouth running off...

Just another point in the pro vs Joes racing in the same class.
Any pro driver who behaves like that around me, does not get any room, I only respond to polite people. I do not mind if a racer raises his voice but if he belittles me or swears or abuses me to move then I will definitely not give him any room. I dont care if he gets taken out and loses his podium, he/she should have listened to his mum and acted politely.
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Old 01-15-2010, 11:04 PM   #147
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I've seen this hobby(onroad electric) and its ups and downs for almost 25 years. Everytime the thing that kills it is the speed. I know, its racing and you're suppose to be fast, but when things get faster, things start to get less and less fun. I saw pan cars in the '80s go from an onroad race with cool looking cars that replicate real IMSA and GTP cars to become just an ocean of TOJ Can Am bodies. Kit stock tires that were made sticky with simple Copper Tone suntan lotion to expensive cap tires costing almost $25 each.(and that was 1980s dollars.). By the early 90's onroad electric, 1/12th and 1/10th pan, just died.

Then out of the ashes, Tamiya shows up with some cool looking F1 cars and BTCC touring racers and the hobby sparked again. Now when you look at TC cars all you see are some "generic" looking shells that resembles a Mazda or Stratus and nothing but dish wheels. What happened to the scale looks that sparked everyone's interest? GONE! Just like pan did away with GTP bodies for the "generic" TOJ. It was no longer interesting to watch or even run. It doesn't matter if your so called "car" looked like a "Blob" of lexan and rubber, just as long as it is fast.

And thats the problem with the speed. It makes things more technical such that it takes the fun out of it. People want to be able to buy a car from a shop and then throw it down on the track and mix it up with others or their friends. Thats why people have resorted to bashing rather than racing. Now, if you don't have the latest and greatest, you just get yelled at to move aside for the fast guy all night long to the point where you absolutely lose interest in ever coming back.

So why not practice some more and get some better stuff so that you can go fast? If your car is slow, no amount of practice is gonna make it fast. Has anyone noticed the cost of electronics nowadays? Its just staggering. To get a proper racing BL speed control, lipo battery and BL motor to run say 17.5.... you practically have to spend almost $300. And those electronics needs to sit in a decent chassis whose average price is about $450. By the time you're done with radio, servos and transponder, you're over $1000! Is the economy in the state at which an average person can spend that kind of money? Absolutely NOT!!


I think the hobby (onroad electric) reached its peak around the time when everything was a tub style chassis (TC3, MR4TC, Street Weapon). At that time you could be very competitive with just $500. Now its practically doubled if not tripled. For years, theres always talk about cost controlled racing but no matter what amount cost control there is, its no fun if it has no ties to real car racing.(scale looking bodies and chassis) Just look at the success of Short Course trucks in the offroad section. The scale realism is bringing a lot of interest in offroad be it an entry level Traxxas or HPI to the more racer oriented AE SC10.

So here's my suggestion, bring the realism back, the cost down and the speed as well. This is the formula that is working right now in offroad and it will work just as well in onroad. People will come back once its fun to run and watch.
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Old 01-16-2010, 11:35 AM   #148
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Then out of the ashes, Tamiya shows up with some cool looking F1 cars and BTCC touring racers and the hobby sparked again. Now when you look at TC cars all you see are some "generic" looking shells that resembles a Mazda or Stratus and nothing but dish wheels. What happened to the scale looks that sparked everyone's interest? GONE! Just like pan did away with GTP bodies for the "generic" TOJ. It was no longer interesting to watch or even run. It doesn't matter if your so called "car" looked like a "Blob" of lexan and rubber, just as long as it is fast.
Ah, the TA02/FF01 days. Loved those cars and the bodies were top notch(Still is today) I still use a NSX body/sj-r rims for my 17.5 class while everone else is using the cheese wedge. Too bad the idea about RCGT class was canned because people didn't want to spend more money to "downgrade".

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And thats the problem with the speed. It makes things more technical such that it takes the fun out of it. People want to be able to buy a car from a shop and then throw it down on the track and mix it up with others or their friends. Thats why people have resorted to bashing rather than racing. Now, if you don't have the latest and greatest, you just get yelled at to move aside for the fast guy all night long to the point where you absolutely lose interest in ever coming back.
The new Tekin really opened a new can of worms. A vast majority of racers at my track use the RS now. But we also have a silvercan class to accommodate new racers that want to test the waters. Good thing we have cool sponsored drivers that will help us with setups too.

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Originally Posted by YR4Dude View Post
So why not practice some more and get some better stuff so that you can go fast? If your car is slow, no amount of practice is gonna make it fast. Has anyone noticed the cost of electronics nowadays? Its just staggering. To get a proper racing BL speed control, lipo battery and BL motor to run say 17.5.... you practically have to spend almost $300. And those electronics needs to sit in a decent chassis whose average price is about $450. By the time you're done with radio, servos and transponder, you're over $1000! Is the economy in the state at which an average person can spend that kind of money? Absolutely NOT!!
Yes, the price is something. But if you think about it, it has been like that since the beginning of ESCs. Top level ESCs have been in the 170~220 range. We are caught in this mayhem because of the transition phase of the technology involved. Once everyone else catches up and things level off, we should have a clearer sight of the things that really need to be addressed.

The BL motors seem expensive at first, but if think that you don't need a lathe or extra brushes, the cost of ownership is pretty low. My DUO that I bought almost 2 yeas ago still runs like new.

And this recession hit us like a sudden storm. I think it would be hard for manufacturers to switch their product line all of a sudden. But a need for a fast but inexpensive ESC is always going be sought after. Perhaps putting a msrp price cap on the speedos that you can run might spark a movement?



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Originally Posted by YR4Dude View Post
I think the hobby (onroad electric) reached its peak around the time when everything was a tub style chassis (TC3, MR4TC, Street Weapon). At that time you could be very competitive with just $500. Now its practically doubled if not tripled. For years, theres always talk about cost controlled racing but no matter what amount cost control there is, its no fun if it has no ties to real car racing.(scale looking bodies and chassis) Just look at the success of Short Course trucks in the offroad section. The scale realism is bringing a lot of interest in offroad be it an entry level Traxxas or HPI to the more racer oriented AE SC10.
+1 Too bad our off-road scene here is in limbo. We have a big off-road track here that needs some work done to be raceable. But regardless, bashing will only go so far unless there is racing. But I still can't understand why the majority of short course trucks are RTRs. Wouldn't that increase the price from the cost of labor to make them?

Last edited by inpuressa; 01-16-2010 at 11:45 AM.
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Old 01-16-2010, 12:03 PM   #149
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Originally Posted by Nova F1 Racer View Post
Pro drivers/what ever racing/qualifing/etc with non-pro like me.. If I am with a fast/pro driver in a qualifier I would just as soon not ever run in that qualifier until after the resort. And that exactly what I did 2 years ago at the Birds. A very good racer was in my first round and all he did was bitch/swear/complain at the other racers in the qualifier. Get out of the way the leader coming up.... And he was not very nice about it either. I pulled my car because it was not worth hearing him and his mouth running off...

Just another point in the pro vs Joes racing in the same class.
Even though you pulled your car off, you stayed in the hobby. I have seen a huge number of people come across that and just leave the hobby entirely. And this problem is getting worse.

Most people here will go into a store (hobby shop, restaurant, convenience store, whatever) expecting some form of respect and when they don't get it, they stop going to that store. The same is true of RC car racing, even at the club level. At first they may think that racing is cool, but if they go to a track only to get yelled and cursed at, not only will they leave that track but they will find something else to do.

This is why we have to find a way to separate the Pros from the Joes. This is supposed to be fun. It's not much fun when every lap someone's yelling at you to move over here comes the fast guy.
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Old 01-16-2010, 01:38 PM   #150
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This is why we have to find a way to separate the Pros from the Joes. This is supposed to be fun. It's not much fun when every lap someone's yelling at you to move over here comes the fast guy.
That's part of racing etiquette. You shouldn't have to be reminded every time. If you are being lapped, you don't block the leader and try to cause accidents. Seen a lot of that recently too. The video game mentality kicks in then I guess. When they get criticized for it they just go "I don't want to play this game anymore" and pop in a new disk somewhere else.
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