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R/C Tech Forums Thread Wiki: 1/12 forum
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Last edit by: Pinkz
This is a place to share knowledge related to 1/12th scale racing. It is not to be used for conversations.

Click links to go to manufacturer product page. If any are missing please add them!

[INDENT] Pre-mounted tires readily available in the US:
Pre-mounted tires readily available in the Europe:
Tire Truers:
Gluing your own donuts:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hm7z1rz-74s - Special thanks to Edward Pickering!
Truing tires:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wqHOLWq6Uc - Special thanks to Edward Pickering!

The following information came from HERE, with some editing and information added. Thanks Christian!


BSR, CRC, Jaco:
Pro One and the brands above are all mounted by BSR and use the same foam. The nomenclature of the BSR vs Jaco/CRC is a little different in a few instances but is otherwise the same. The BSR foam consists of three families, and can be identifed as synthetics, naturals, and blends.

Synthetics - The old school, light weight, easy to true "dry feeling" tires. These include tires like CRC/Jaco Yellow (BSR White), Black, Gray, etc. These tires offer the highest wear rate and lowest grip. Many racers continue to use these nder high bite conditions.

Naturals - These tires are usually the best alternative for low bite and asphalt. They include Pink, Magenta, Double Pink, Lilac (BSR Team Purple), Purple, and other tires. These tires provide a ton of grip, but tend to get sticky in high bite conditions. This rubber does not wear as easily, and the cars will pick up gunk and fibers from the carpet under most high bite conditions. This is especially bad if the humidity is high.

Blends - These are the tires most people run today. They were initially called "JFT foam" by some, as it was believed that the tires were the same as the JFT tires. We can divide the blends further into two groups: high rubber and low rubber content. The high rubber would be the new rear Orange and Red from the BSR family, and the low rubber would be the Green and Blue varieties. When, asked about the difference, John Foister from BSR Tires said they came from the same "family" of foam, but they offered different grip. According to John, the Green/Blue has more bite than Orange/Red, but from track testing Oranges offer more bite than Green (being equivalent to in hardness) when the grip is high and absolutely no grip when it is lower. The Orange foam has a denser pore structure and the tire is not as prone to chunking. It is also important to note is that BSR Blue rears are not the same as the BSR Blue fronts!

JFT stands for Japan Foam Tire. They started the new wave of foam tires we are all using now (Blue/Blu, Green/Greene, Dbl Blue, etc). These tires are a little different than the BSR tire family, but work in very similar conditions. They currently offer four varieties - A, C, S, and R. See below for an explanation of the different varieties. Please note that JFT uses the same foam for fronts and rears, so a C35 front is the same as a C35 rear (for example.) This is different from other brands where a Blue front might be different from a Blue rear.

Most people reference JFT tires using a combination of the variety/family (A, C, R, or S) in conjunction with the shore (30, 32, 35, etc.) This is easier than using colours, as there are common colours across the different families (both C and S have a blue, for example.)

JFT also does offer a stripe spec tire for 1/12 that uses a higher shore A foam with a blue stripe. This tire is comparable to the BSR purple stripe tire, although the JFT version can sometimes feel softer - primarily due to the wider blue stripe that is a softer foam than the BSR purple stripe (actual stripe, not the tire foam.)

A foam = Pink/Magenta/Purple Family. Used on asphalt and black carpet, considered close to the natural rubber variety and are named consistently with other natural tires. A foam is very good on black carpet, although it will wear faster than other foam types. Common combinations (F/R) are A30/A30 or A32/A30.
C foam = C foam is very similar to the BSR Blue/Green foam, or the Ulti X foam. JFT C foam is what started the trend of Blue/Green with Naoto's win at worlds in 2012. This foam wears very well and is good on old grey carpet. Common combinations (F/R) include C35/C35 or A32/C30.
S Foam = Think of this as an evolution of C foam. Korey H likes to call them super blue/green. S tends to have better forward bite than C foam, but with better rotation at the same time. As such, S foam can feel a bit more aggressive to drive. S foam wears well, both on grey and black carpet. S, like R, is probably one of the best compounds on grey carpet. S foam can be good on black carpet, but has largely been overshadowed by R foam - since R is a bit easier to drive and has produced well in 13.5. Common combinations (F/R) include S35/S30 or S35/S35.
R Foam = These are similar to S foam, which means they are, in-turn, similar to C foam (both S and R are based on C foam.) R foam feels like S foam but just a little more mellow and stable than S foam. R foam does seem to wear a bit better than S foam. R foam has been very popular in 13.5 on black carpet for the past several years. Typical combinations (F/R) include R35/R35 or R35/R30.

For general setup, the JFT foam seem to generate more bite than the BSR, therefore the car tends to be a little more aggressive.

Ulti is another Japanese brand that offers an array of compounds. They have their own way of rating tires, and are difficult to equate to other brands. They have 4 different varieties, each in varying degrees of hardness.

J: High rubber content tire, similar to Pink/ Magenta. Soft would be close to a pink. These offer the most bite and are great for asphalt/carpet front tire. (J hard being very popular)
X: "Balanced" blend, similar to JFT Blue/ Green. Soft is equivalent to Green, medium to Blue in hardness. Great for carpet!
Y: High synthetic blend with lower grip, and is not a very popular variety.
Z: A very expensive "special" foam that is supposed to be magic on asphalt. Only make it in soft shore.
G: -Evolution of the X compound, for carpet high grip (not on chart below)
European tires:
There are many great European foam tire brands that use their own types of foam, as well as traditional foams. Someone with more knowledge about them will need to fill this in!

Tire Diameter:
If you are racing on carpet, you have to evaluate how much grip your track has. If your track is low to medium grip, you can run bigger tires. If you are on higher bite you have to cut them smaller, there is simply no way around it. Bigger tires are needed for asphalt, especially in the rear. The larger tires provide much needed lateral bite.

Carpet (mm):
Low - Medium Bite
Front: 42.0 - 42.5
Rear: 42.5 - 43.00
Medium - High Bite
Front: 40.5 - 41.0
Rear: 41.5 - 42.0
Big Race
Front: 39.5 - 40.0
Rear: 40.5 - 41.0
Asphalt (mm):
Parking Lot
Front: 43.0 - 44.0
Rear: 44.0 - 45.0
Prepped High Bite
Front: 42.0 - 43.0
Rear: 43.0 - 44.0

Tire Saucing:
Most facilities have moved towards odorless traction additives such as SXT. Some of additives evaporate very quickly and some do not. This seems to be something that is also dependent on tire compound and ambient temperature. For example, saucing a Green compound seems like it never dries, especially when tjhe temperature is lower. We have found that wiping the tires off 15 minutes before we go run allows the sauce to cure, which makes the car come in much quicker with Green rears. Blue compounds on the other hand, do fine when wiped off right before hitting the track.

Saucing half front and full rear is a good initial starting point. If the front of the car is too agressive you can sauce les than half, or for a shorter amount of time. On black carpet the car may be numb to sauce changes, either a long or short sauce can produce very similar handling.
Tire Fuzzing:
In conditions of increasing grip, foam tires will somewtimes get sticky and pick up fuzz and debris from the track. This is highly dependent on the rubber sedan tire that is being run at your local track and the compound/ type of foam you are running on you car. The softer the sedan tire and the harder/higher rubber content in your foam tire, trouble with fuzzing seems more likely to occur.

There are ways to get around fuzzing under most conditions, and usually involves the selection of the correct foam compound. The more fuzz you get, the softer/lower rubber content you want to run.

Problem: Car fuzzes with Lilac/Team Purple fronts and car starts pushing.
Solution: Use a softer front tire and or different family of foam. Replace it with Blue or Double Blue front. Alternatively you can sauce the front tires harder and tune the car for less front end bite.

Problem: Car loses rear bite 6 minutes into the run. Blue rear tires look almost clean but have small carpet hairs.
Solution: Use Green rear tires. The softer compound wears instead of getting sticky, minimizing fuzz. Possibly a longer sauce will prevent fuzzing.

Alternatively, mild tire fuzzing can be remedied with longer sauce soak times, particularly if you are using SXT3 as your house sauce.

Tire Selection:
Starting out, pick 2 tire compounds for the front and rear. The following should have you covered 99% of the time.

Rear - Green and Blue (BSR) or Green and Light Blue (JFT)
Front - Blue and Double Blue (BSR) or Blue and Dark Blue (JFT)

You may wonder about other compounds out there and if they might be better, trust me, they probably won't be. Even if there are other tires that can be as fast, the synthetic family wears out really fast and the high natural rubber will probably fuzz on you over an 8 minute run. The blends family seems to be the most versatile foam type available today. They last awhile, and sticking to them will make your process of tire selection simpler.
Tire Charts:

chart above shows BSR orange and red at high shores used in TC fronts, for 1/12 scale they are different shores. BSR site does not reflect this, below are available and being used by racers
F1222 ORANGE REAR 25 shore Asphalt tracks. Low wear / long lasting
F1228 RED REAR 30 shore High traction asphalt tracks. Lowest wear / longest lasting.



JFT (Japan Foam Tire)


Enneti (Xceed)

As of now, ROAR is staying 1S (3.7V nominal; 4.2V fully charged) for 1/12. There are many 1S ESC's with a built in BEC so nothing else is required to power the receiver and servo.

If you don't want to lock yourself into a 1S specific ESC, you do have other options! It is possible to use your 2S ESC without a booster or receiver pack, and the ESC simply supplies the lower voltage. If that does not appeal to you, you will need to use an Rx pack or booster. The Rx pack and booster will both supply the receiver with a higher voltage than the 1S pack.


If you choose to use a voltage booster, it works exactly how it sounds. Instead of plugging the ESC into the receiver, it plugs into the booster, and the booster plug goes to the ESC, supplying the higher voltage.

If there are any missing please add them!!
If anyone would like a need for a chart comparing the ESC's specs PM fenton06 and I'll get one made and put in here!

If there are any missing please add them!!
If anyone would like a need for a chart comparing the ESC's specs PM fenton06 and I'll get one made and put in here!
Voltage Boosters:
If there are any missing please add them!
Black Art (CRC - US Dist):
  • Audi R8C - BA002 - .020 Thick

  • Black Market (Mohawk 12) - BA005 - .020

  • Lola B10 - BA006 - .020 thick
  • Toyota TS030 - BA008 - .020 thick

    Lola - black/red, TS030 - green/pink


Reflex Racing/RSD:

Pan Car Front Suspension Tuning:
DISCLAIMER : The following tuning advice was written based on the tuning experience of the author and may not hold true for all cars, drivers, or surfaces. In the end the best tuning advice is to experiment and make changes one at a time so you can track your changes and find the car balance that works best for your driving style. One real world test is worth a million ‘expert’ opinions.

Front End Type:

All popular modern pan car front suspensions are very similar, with a few exceptions such as Speedmerchant New School but most of the info in this wiki applies to them as well. For the most part, they consist of a rigid bottom arm, an upper A-arm, and a kingpin with a spring. There are different flavors of this general design, such as the CRC Dynamic Strut that uses a threaded kingpin and upper pivot ball instead of the Associated style that uses a kingpin that goes through the entire steering knuckle assembly, but their operation is the same with the rigid lower arm and the upper arm controlling the arc of movement as the suspension is compressed.


More so than in almost any other part of the car, the front suspension of your 1/12 car must move absolutely free. Reamers and hobby knives are important here, as any binding will cause the car to corner unpredictably. A little play in the suspension is a good thing, and racers will often find that ‘worn in’ suspension pieces function a little better than new.


Besides tires, spring rate is the most important part of deciding how your car will handle through corners, but are somewhat complicated. As a general rule of thumb, a very hard front spring will have somewhat less steering grip than a softer spring with the same suspension setup and tires, but not as much as in other classes such as touring or offroad. On carpet, springs of different tension can be used to tune how your car will maintain or lose energy through corners with the following general rule of thumb:

Hard Spring (0.55mm or harder): Less overall steering, quick reaction to driver input, less on power steering, harder turn-in with potentially lazy mid-corner and exit.

Soft Spring (.45mm): More overall steering especially at low speed, slightly slower reaction to driver input, more on-power steering, less aggressive turn-in but can ‘hook’ and give better mid-corner and exit.

It is worth noting that front springs from different suppliers are often very different, in both height, wire thickness, and coils for a given spring height meaning that a “medium” spring from one manufacturer may be the “hard” spring for another. To make accurate changes you may want to use one spring maker and stick with their line.

Another aspect to pan car springs is that they can get “blown out” and collapse, no longer as stiff or as tall as they were. These should be replaced with fresh springs to ensure consistent handling.


This is generally a minor adjustment, but adding dampening tube fluid to the front kingpins of a 1/12 car can give it a little more initial steering. Often unusual compounds see use here, such as Losi Smart Diff Grease or Associated Green Slime being a popular front kingpin lube.

Caster and Reactive Caster:

Caster is the angle of the kingpin, almost always angling back to the rear of the car, with a typical range from 0-10 degrees. Increasing your caster will typically result in less turn-in but a little more control, more steering exiting the corner, and somewhat increased straight-line stability with less tendency to wander because a wheel running caster will tend to straighten itself. Less caster will usually give you more off-power steering, but often with correspondingly less on-power when accelerating out of the corner.

Running reactive caster attempts to use both of these aspects to increase overall steering: when the car loads up on the outside front tire, the caster angle decreases, increasing the front end ‘hook’ as you enter the corner and then giving you the high caster on-power steering as you exit and weight is transferred off the front end. More reactive caster means more overall steering, but can mean you may have to adjust your driving style to drive more ‘ahead of the car’, needing to predict where the front end will grip.

As grip increases, less reactive caster is the normal tuning change made to keep the front end of the car from gripping too hard and oversteering and prevent traction roll. Static caster adjustments are still used to change the cars on power / off power steering balance.

Reactive Camber and Front Roll Center:

Reactive camber or camber gain is how much camber is added the front wheels as the suspension compresses. This can be increased or decreased by changing the angle and length of the top arm. Short, angled arm = more. Long, flat arm = less. More reactive camber will typically cause the car to “roll up” on the outer front wheel, transferring more weight in a turn and give more steering up to the point at which the tire is overloaded. This is generally more front grip and weight transfer than wanted on carpet, and as a result most cars run a flatter longer front arm.

Roll Center is the point on which the car will twist laterally or ‘roll’ during cornering. This can be raised or lowered by changing the angle and length of the top arm, with a short angled arm raising is slightly and a long flat arm lowering it. From what I have calculated most modern 1/12 cars meant for carpet have a roll center somewhere around the height of the chassis plate or just below it, but due to the lower arms being rigid and flat the roll center cannot be under the bottom of the tires like it often is on a touring car.
These two are inexorably linked in pan cars. Top arm length can be changed by the top arm mount in or out using shims or a CRC Long Arm kit, but is generally a minor tuning choice. Tuning of roll center with shims is usually a minor tuning choice in a pan car with a rigid bottom arm due to how the car cannot gain extra mechanical advantage on the lower arm as you can in a touring car, while reactive camber can be a significant driver of the car’s performance. In a modern car running on carpet the kit setup is usually perfectly fine.

Front End Alignment:

Static camber is the angle of your front wheels at rest, typically somewhere from 0 to 1.5 degrees on a pan car depending on surface, tire choice, and other factors, but a good starting point is usually somewhere around 0.5 degrees. More camber will typically give more steering, but many racers use static camber to ensure that their tires wear flat even if that means not having exactly equal camber on both sides of the car. This is adjusted by threading in and out the upper turnbuckle or pivot ball.

It is also worth noting that when running on high grip the flex and deformation of your chassis, suspension parts, and front wheels can become significant and cause uneven front tire wear. Some troubleshooting of the right combination of static camber, camber gain, caster, and tire/rim choice may be necessary to ensure even front tire wear.


The front toe is one of the more easily adjusted aspects of the car and can have a significant effect on the attitude of the car due to it being a quick way to moderately adjust Ackerman without making significant other changes. With nothing else being adjusted, going from zero toe to toe-in will give a car a harder turn-in and will tend to scrub speed with the front end as opposed to using drag brake. This can be necessary when racing in Super Stock or higher power classes and will allow you to drive more aggressively, and can help the car track straighter under power. Toe-out will tend to make the car coast more through corners due to reducing the steering angle of the outer front tire. If a car has too much off-power steering but is otherwise stable, adding toe-out can calm the car but may the car to wander on the straights especially if the front end setup is very soft.


Ackerman is the difference in steering angle between the two front tires during a turn. It is the result of how during a turn the inside of the car experiences a tighter circle and needs correspondingly more steering angle, but is also an important tuning tool. More Ackerman means having more inside wheel steering angle relative to the outer wheel, less means that the difference in steering angle is smaller.

To add or remove Ackerman, using a servo horn that spaces the links further apart (such as a Kimbrough Small Servo Saver, the outer holes on a Tamiya or Xray servo saver) will have more Ackerman than a servo that puts the links close together (Kimbrough Medium inner holes, Tamiya or Xray inner holes.) The rule of thumb is that a servo that puts the ball studs close together but spaced away from the servo horn will have less Ackerman than one that spaces them far apart and close to the servo horn. Ackerman changes will have the same effect as changing toe with more Ackerman being effectively toeing the wheels out and less toeing them in, but will not affect the straight-line attitude of the car.

Turning Circle / Steering Angle:

In offroad or even touring car you can set up the car to use the full angle of the steering 100% of the time. You will almost certainly not be able to do this in 1/12 scale. It goes without saying that as you turn up your steering angle you will gain steering often to the point of the car being undriveable. The quickest way to set the steering correctly is to set the sub-trim in your radio such that the car tracks straight and the servo horn is straight up and down, then set the endpoints equally such that they don't quite hit the steering bump-stops, then turn down the dual-rate or total throw from there. A typical starting point is somewhere between 45 and 60% of the total steering throw, or a 4-5' turning circle.
Pan Car Rear Pod Tuning:
Modern pan cars are all link cars with a center pivot ball and solid rear axle. This suspension system is required by ROAR rules and has the advantage of being simple, lightweight, and inexpensive compared to other more exotic methods of rear suspension, but it has some complicated movements that can be unintuitive.

Motion of the Rear Pod:

Due to how the rear pod is a solid axle, the only motion the pod itself sees is the main pivot up and down, but due to the main chassis being independently sprung it will feel the lean, dive, and squat of the main chassis as the car is driven. The lateral forces of the main chassis during cornering is transmitted through the main pivot ball and side links, the roll through the side springs and side dampeners, and the squat and dive through the main shock and spring. In addition, the torque of the motor against the pinion gear both during acceleration and braking is significant enough to cause a change in attitude even in low-powered classes. The motor pinion will try to “climb” the spur gear, lifting the center pivot of the car and countering the “squat” of the main chassis weight being transferred backward by the acceleration or the opposite under brakes.

Main Shock:

The adjustment of the main shock of a pan car is one of its more important tuning parameters. Spring, dampening oil, and pod droop are all controlled by the main shock.

Main Spring:

A soft main spring generally means more rear grip and more forgiving off-power, while a stiffer spring can mean more steering especially off-power, but the main spring must also be stiff enough to prevent the chassis from dragging when running on high grip. For most cars the kit spring is a medium weight spring that is a good starting point.

Main Shock Dampening:

The weight of the main shock oil will determine how fast the car will react off-power. 30wt or roughly 300cps shock oil is a good starting point, going up in weight will increase initial off-power turn-in, while going down will generally make initial turn-in softer. Often a heavier shock oil can make the car transition from entry to mid to corner exit smoother, where a car with light fluid may have a more pronounced ‘hook’ in the mid corner.

Side Springs:

The side springs transfer the roll motion of the main chassis to the rear plate via spring tension. Softer side springs give the car more rear grip and can make the car have a smoother steering feel. Stiffer springs promote the cars rotation and give more steering. You can either pre-load side springs or let them float, due to all side springs being progressive beehive shaped springs pre-load makes them effectively harder and will give more steering, but a small amount of pre-load can also make the care more predictable and forgiving. In conditions of extremely high grip, it may be possible to run no side springs at all due to the steering afforded by the tacky running surface and helps prevent traction-roll, likewise in extremely low grip when rear stability is absolutely necessary. Generally 1/12 cars run soft side springs but stiffer ones can be very common in Pro 10, WGT, or WGT-R.

Side Dampener Tubes:

Heavier tube lube will keep a car flatter at corner entry, initiating quicker. It may also make the car square off the corner entry when the grip gets beyond med-high. Going lighter will reduce steering initiation and maybe preferred on higher grip. This parameter is really unique to the driver preference, as some drivers are very fast and consistent with heavily dampened cars while others prefer softer setups.


Controlled by the length of the shock, adjusting the rear pod droop is extremely important on high-grip surfaces. Reducing droop prevents the car from transferring weight during cornering and will give more rear stability and prevent traction-roll or problematic lifting of the inside rear tires during cornering, low droop can also give the car slightly more on-power steering. Increasing will allow the car to transfer more weight and dive harder into corners, but by allowing the center of the car to rise you will be more prone to traction roll issues. A typical starting point is 1-2mm of droop from ride height, but 0mm is often used on high grip.
Pan Car Differential Tuning:

This is officially where the Black Magic starts. Highly successful pan car racers can have very different ways of building diffs, but the following tips have helped multiple racers assemble consistent pan car diffs:

All modern pan cars are direct drive and use a ball-diff type solid axle. This is the lightest and most efficient manner of transferring power to the drive wheels, and by far the simplest drive system used in RC. In spite of its simplicity and low number of parts, pan car differentials are often miss-understood, particularly by those who have never raced pan cars before. This short guild will hopefully clear up any misconceptions about assembly, tuning, and troubleshooting of pan car differentials for beginners.


It is recommended that you use an electronics cleaner or plastic-safe motor spray to clean the dirt, oils or grease out of even fresh parts to ensure a good diff action. Some racers will blast new bearing grease out of bearings before re-oiling with light oil, but this may not be as beneficial as some believe and that light oil can get into the diff and cause slipping. The most important parts to get clean and dry are the diff rings, diff balls, and spur gear. Then assemble the diff according to the kit instructions, but refrain from adding grease until the next step.

When assembling your differential, pay attention to clearances between different moving surfaces, bearings should fit snug and spin free, including the bearing on which the spur gear is mounted because if the spur gear is not tight with its carrier bearing it will not spin true. With the diff assembled but not yet greased there should be a tick of side-to-side play in the spur gear when torqued side-to-side, indicating that the diff balls and not the gear are in contact with the diff rings. Check the action of the diff with it dry, as it will be easier to determine the source of binding or roughness than it would be before greasing the diff. If it turns smooth but with good ‘bite’ between the diff balls and ring gears without slipping, the spur gear and diff balls are ready for grease.

Almost without fail racers from other RC classes such as offroad or touring car assemble their first pan car diffs with far too much grease. It is important to understand that the point of grease in pan car diffs is not to smooth out the operation of the components as they mesh together as it is in a gear diff, but to lube the contact between spur gear spinning diff ball.
The type of grease to use is white silicone grease such as Team Associated Stealth grease. This is not “good grease” as it is not slippery and does not cushion metal surfaces well, but that is the point, you are counting on the friction between the diff ball and diff ring to transfer all of the power your motor makes to the axle. Using more slippery grease like black carbon/moly grease will make your differential slip.

To apply grease, remove the spur gear with the diff balls still in their pockets, and dab a tiny amount of grease to each diff ball, and by tiny I mean that the dot of grease should just barely cover the visible surface of the diff ball, steady hands will be necessary. With the dab of grease on each diff ball, use your thumb and forefinger to roll each diff ball in its pocket to evenly spread the grease on the inner surface of the spur gear. Most of the grease will wind up on your fingers, and that is intentional. This is the most reliable action the author has found to get an appropriate amount of grease into the diff.

The next step may be slightly controversial, as we have already removed most of this admittedly tiny amount of grease from the spur gear/diff ball assembly: Take a clean shop towel or rag and firmly wipe down both sides of the spur gear, with the objective of getting all of the grease off from both sides of the plastic gear except for what is in the diff ball pockets. This is necessary to ensure that excess grease does not get onto the ring gears. DO NOT GREASE THE RING GEARS, enough grease will get on them to ensure good operation just from the grease left in the diff balls. Re-assemble the diff.

Setting Differential Pre-Load:

A pan car will almost always benefit from the pre-load of the diff only being strong enough to prevent the diff from slipping. A tight or viscous diff like the oil-filled gear diffs now popular in touring car will lead to unpredictable handling and oversteer. Also, over-tightening the diff can damage either the thrust bearing assembly or outside bearing. As you tighten the diff, check how much force it takes to turn the slip the spur gear, if it takes some effort with your thumb, the diff is probably tight enough. Another way to measure if the diff is tight enough is on-track, if your car will spin the tires from a standing full-throttle start before slipping the diff it is tight enough to race.

A very common issue is that your diff requires excessive preload to prevent slipping, the most likely explanation is that you used too much grease or some other oil has gotten into the diff in which case a clean-out and re-greasing of the diff would be useful. If you assembled the diff dry and had it didn’t slip, but it slips after adding grease, you need to use less grease and try to keep that grease from getting onto the surface of the diff rings. One option would be to spin up the diff with the motor or by hand, then disassemble and clean the diff rings with motor spray before re-assembling and checking the tension by hand again. This can use the centrifugal force of spinning the diff to remove excess grease from the spur gear. DO NOT simply hold one tire to spin up the diff and other tire to full speed especially if running higher powered classes, this is far more RPM difference than the diff will ever see during racing and may damage your spur gear from the heat. Free-spinning the axle assembly is fine to remove excess grease, but don’t over-speed the diff action.

Final Assembly:

When assembling your diff with the pod, take care to not put pre-load on the pod bearings or this may cause binding. Some racers intentionally put a tick of side-to-side play between the pod bearings and the axle by placing a piece of paper between the hub and bearing before tightening it, this may be excessive but will ensure smooth action without a bind.

General Tips:

1: Silicon Nitride diff balls are THE FIRST upgrade the author would recommend to new pan car racers. At under $1 each they are basically the same price as hardened steel and will never need to be replaced, and at nearly diamond-hardness will never flat spot or be the cause of a bad or crunchy diff. One set has lasted the author three different cars.

2: XENON Racing spur gears are the best pan car spur gears. Period. This is particularly true in low-powered classes that use smaller spurs. The plastic they use is distinctly stiffer and better cut than Kimbrough or other softer gears. They do have the ability to take 16 diff balls, but can be run with 8 or 12 and still be perfectly smooth.

3: A diff that uses a dedicated thrust bearing assembly instead of a ‘thrust washer’ that simply pushes against the outer hub bearing have a significant durability advantage. Standard ball bearings are not meant to hold the amount of axial load these diffs require, and when the diff takes a hit such as when you clip a corner with a back wheel that shock zaps right back through that bearing, bending a spot in the race and making the diff feel like it was assembled with diff rocks. The Slapmaster or Yokomo R12 thrust bearing can be adapted to other cars.

4: Unless they are damaged it is generally unnecessary to change diff rings or balls doing general maintenance. A quick clean out and rebuild will do a lot for your diff action. Many instances of diff rings lasting entire racing seasons without issue are commonplace, and haphazardly replacing components looking for smooth diff action is generally unnecessary.

Diff Troubleshooting:

1: Diff feels crunchy –

Check your diff balls and rings, if they are clean and fresh check your bearings to ensure that they are smooth and undamaged. A bearing with a damaged race can still spin relatively smoothly, but cause a crunchy feel, especially when you are not running a thrust bearing in your diff.

2: Diff has a tight spot but otherwise smooth –

Make sure that your diff rings are flat against the axle and hub, and that they are not bent or damaged. Also, a bent or damaged spur gear can make the diff have a tight spot due to the diff balls being forced into an oval-shaped path instead of a circle.

3: Diff feels smooth before the run but seems to tighten during use, causing the car to go loose –

Disassemble, clean, and re-grease the diff. Going too long between rebuilds may cause your diff to go dry and under the heat of racing it will tighten and cause oversteer.

4: Car pulls under acceleration or braking –

Check the pod bearings and axle for any bent or damaged components. Also many times a car that pulls under power will have a damaged wheel, make sure that they spin true.
Pan Weight Distribution:

In a pan car running a transverse battery layout, you may have the choice of running the battery forward in the chassis or back, changing the static distribution of weight. On low grip surfaces such as asphalt this typically coincides with grip, a front mounted battery will have more front grip and a rear mounted would have more rear grip, but this logic falls apart on carpet.

On carpet, especially high-grip carpet, running your pack toward the back of the car can make you prone to traction roll or lifting of the inside rear tires in corners. It also will narrow the cars ‘tuning window’, amplifying the effects of setup changes and changes in conditions. The upside is that under the right circumstances such as a medium-grip carpet track and high-grip rear tires a rear-pack setup can carry a lot of corner speed by preventing the back from rotating and making it ‘follow the front’ instead of pivoting on it.

Running the battery forward in the car or switching to an inline setup will usually make the car easier to drive on carpet. It takes side-load off the rear pivot and rear tires, which mellows the car and helps to prevent traction roll. The car will usually be less sensitive to tuning changes as well.

The static weight distribution the author would recommend to start is about 60% rear, 40% front. A few % change is fine, but try not to have more than 60% on the rear to start as a heavily rear-biased car can begin to be hard to tune. 55%/45% may be easier to drive.

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Old 11-07-2003, 05:57 AM   #4741
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To all with Speedmerchant Q's.... Sorry I havent been able to answer them quickly (racing went really late at the track last night, lol) I should respond to everyone around noon. Thanks!
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Old 11-07-2003, 09:04 AM   #4742
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At the Ohio race it was an IRS car 1st.
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Old 11-07-2003, 09:45 AM   #4743
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odpurple- Does your car push? It would seem to me with that set up it would. I normally run something similar in mod, except 35 fronts, .022's and a 17lb center spring (black SM spring) and 80weight.

adam- it not centering is probably caused by a few things howevering trying to go around it with wicked stiff side springs isnt probably a good idea (unless you mean orange, which is the softest, even then however...)

A fast car is hard to drive, it has alot of steering and doesnt scrub speed however, as a result it does not always track straight. Also low roll center cones help, since it keeps the car from transphering as much weight at a high cone.

Nexus- That pic is correct, except its a graphite chassis, not black fiberglass like shown in the pic.

baboon- I normally run ascari's at club races however, i am going to run a parma speed 8 since i heard the new carpetis wicked high grip to start with, and I wont need the steering of an ascari (dont want to traction roll either).

dandy- All us American's use those silly screw sizes! lol I like 3mm however, almost no one uses them in the US, so it dont think any US based cars will be transphering over any time soon, sorry.

junkie- I respect your opinion however....

-As far as how many parts it includes... The reason it does not include those parts are because they are servo specific.

-Damper tubes: I have gone over this 100x however to sum up. They are aluminuim they bend in a hit. The NEW SP tubes are quite positivly "money" lol.

-The chassis on the Rev. 3 is MUCH stronger, and stiffer, the CRC cut out the back of the chassis way to much. Thats why they tried to comensate with the chassis brace...

-Lets talk about the other triple crown races. It TQ'd and won (a different driver TQ'd than won) at the silver city shootout. At the nats it TQ'd and won by Alex Lopez who had barely run the car prior to the race.

-Roll center: I highly doubt that you did not prefer the low roll center. You have to add some steering since the car does not transpher the weight like it did with a high roll center, but its much easier to drive fast, and carries more speed.

Those are the main points that i wanted to address however, i dont quite agree with you 100% on your other statments.

yobbism- That is correct.

Sorry if i missed anything, I am rushing through my lunch break typing this all up! lol.
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Old 11-07-2003, 10:50 AM   #4744
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Default not pushing

The car doesn't push at all. The setup is basically one I got from our track owner, a Speedmerchant driver. The carpet we race on has been rolled up over the summer and has some wierd bite. everyone with a side spring car has had problems with traction rolls (traction hooking, really) and this setup helps. One thing I did not mention that really helps is radically rounding off the corners of the front tires (q-balls, as it was put). We now have a new term at our track: "did you Q-ball your fronts?"
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Old 11-07-2003, 10:54 AM   #4745
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Cool REV3

Hey, Ruben, you have a good memory. Good to here from you. Unfortunately the R3 is still on the shelf untouched and gathering dust , since I received it. In excellant shape I might add. The profession I chose 35 years ago (yes I'm an old BULL) requires that I work 60 to 70 hrs a week from May to Nov. BUT then I get too PLAY Nov. to April. (Can't put hot asphalt on frozen ground). I put that post on the forum from work the other day and didn't have the car to look at. I will try the car (as is) next week and go from there. We have brand Ozite carpet , tonight will be its baptism.


BUT WAIT THERES MORE ..... sounds like the BLOODY KNIFE and the 3.1 (parts car) could be on the market soon so I can buy a second Rev3. Maybe yours at the end of the season again. If I can wait that long.

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Old 11-07-2003, 02:17 PM   #4746
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odpurple- Just curious, whats his name?

Also every track is different, so nothing works everywhere. If its dialed, its dialed.

And ya, I q-ball my tires too at big races, lol. Traction rolls are caused by too much front grip. The front tires are basically throwing the rest of the car over them (if that makes any sense). So there are other things you can do like running stiffer front springs to keep the weigh from transphering, and alot of other stuff.
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Old 11-07-2003, 05:45 PM   #4747
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Default Q-ball racing

It's Scott Tomasello. He's been great help getting my car to work. The car being thrown over the front tires may not make sense untill you've had your car do it. Once I figured out what the car was doing I could see that the fronts would dig in, the rear would tip and then come down and the car would hook right into the board. At first I blamed the tape joints on the carpet, then I figured there were bumps in the rug. It all went away with the right setup. We're racing on Fanfare (is that what it's called?) which seems to have a lot more bite than Ozite anyway.
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Old 11-07-2003, 05:52 PM   #4748
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Hey guys, new to 1/12th scale, what's Q-balling the tires? Is it just basically rounding them off severely?
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Old 11-07-2003, 05:57 PM   #4749
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OD...... this is Ruben. What setup changes did you make? Curious, I practiced wih my Rev 3 after the first race and didn't have any traction rolling problems and I've been out since that race due to health issues.

stormperson ...... what would you reccomend for traction rolling problems? I know that I did have a problem a one of our races last year and was not able to figure it out.
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Old 11-07-2003, 06:23 PM   #4750
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Default i saw the light

Hey Ruben-
Maybe the bite wasn't up enough yet at the first race, but everyone noticed it by the next Wed night. Kevin ran my CRC car that night because he left his car at home (dummy!) and after the race described exactly the same symptoms as I had with the Rev3.
Blue sides
Black center (SM 17lb), 60 wt, no droop
24 fronts, 2 deg caster
Whites and Purples (Q-balled, baby!) 48 and 46mm
Losi medium in der tubes
Speed 8

Ask Scott to see the email from Speedmerchant, it's very informative (like a revelation). It's all about the traction rolling thing.
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Old 11-07-2003, 06:57 PM   #4751
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FYI: Info from Bruce

Chassis. Even though your chassis comes partially assembled, you should take it apart so you can properly file the battery slots and drill/countersink your chassis for your servo. You should only file the chassis/battery tray so the cells sit flush with the bottom of the chassis. They should never hang below the chassis.

Suspension. Although not necessary, it is beneficial to polish all the metal suspension balls and front kingpins. This is easily accomplished by chucking up a 4-40 tie rod into your Dremel or hand drill and thread the balls on. Then using a quality metal polish, spin them in a clean rag. The kingpins can be chucked up by themselves doing each end individually. Note: The Front Suspensions Arms are right and left pieces. When mounted flat on your Rev.3 chassis with the front end pointing away from you. The upper arms’ kingpin bulges should face forward.

VCS Shock. Assemble the VCS shock according to the included instructions. We recommended 80 wt. Shock fluid with the heavy silver spring to start. Generally, the stiffer the center spring the more steering your Rev.3 will have.

Ride Height. Should be level or slightly nose high.

Caster. You should start with a 2-degree caster shim under each suspension arm. More caster will give the car less “cut”, but more steering exiting the corner. Less caster will do the opposite.

Toe. Toe in will make the car easy to drive and slightly less responsive. Toe out will give the car more “cut” going into the corner but less strait line stability.

Side Links. Thread the four rod ends onto the two adjustable turnbuckles, leaving just under 1 inch of the turnbuckle showing between the plastic rod ends. Now, starting with either side snap on one of the side links. Note: It’s a good idea to have the turnbuckle aligned so that tighter/shorter is in towards the chassis and looser/longer is away from the chassis. Next, you can thread in the two 2/56 screws into the side link you have installed. Note: These screws are only to prevent the links from popping off. They are NOT to be tightened around the balls snugly; this will cause serious binding in the rear suspension. There should be a large gap between the ends of the adjustable rod ends when properly set. After you have one side link installed, lay your chassis on a flat table with a piece of white notebook paper underneath it. Now by adjusting your turnbuckle make the gap between the chassis and the lower pod plate equal on both sides of the center pivot socket. Once you have the link properly adjusted you can snap on the other side link. Once again, you can thread in the 2-56 adjuster screws so the link won’t pop off while adjusting it. To adjust the 2nd link take the chassis in your left hand and with your right hand wiggle the lower pod plate side to side. It will probably “click” or have a “bound up” feel when doing this. Slowly adjust the 2nd link in either direction. Note: Adjustments to the turnbuckle should be no more than 1/16 of a full turn at a time. After giving the turnbuckle a small adjustment feel the side to side movement again. Did it get better or worse? If it got better go in the same direction again, if it got worse go in the opposite direction. Repeat these steps until the side to side and the fore & aft movements are free. If a link is too long the side to side movement will “click”, if too short it will feel “bound up”. Note: Never re-adjust the 1st link when trying to free up the rear end. The 1st link is always correct if you initially adjusted it properly.

Damper Tubes. You must trim your twin damper tubes to fit you Rev.3 chassis. To do this pull the male/female damper pieces apart. Now with a very sharp hobby knife trim each end as follows. The female should be trimmed to 2 1/8 inches end to end. The male side should be trimmed to 2 inches. Make sure to remove any burs. Losi soft, medium, and hard Hydra Drive fluids all work well in the damper tubes.

Servo Mounting. The servo should be mounted so that the front of the servo case is equal with the rear of the suspension arm mount. The off-set of the servo should be to the passenger side of the chassis. Use a small Kimbrough servo saver. Mount the tie-rod ends to the front of the servo saver in the upper most holes. This will give the best Ackerman angle for your Rev.3.


Here is our most recent set-up.

Front End:
Tires-Start with Purple, if you feel the car is pushing, go to TRC Magentas or JACO 35's if you can get them. For club racing purples usually do the trick, but sometimes the softer fronts are a must with how fast batts and motors are today. Start at 1.78"
Springs-We usually run .20's. If the track has a lot of 180's you might drop down to .18's. Generally run as soft as you can without the car "over rotating" leaving a turn. If the track has lots of high speed sweepers we'll go up to .22's. I don't think we've ever used .16 or .24's.
Polish your front kingpins. They get grungy suprisingly quick. Keep an eye on them. A sticky front kingpin will make a car handle like crap. When you only have 3/16 inch of travel, it better be smooth.
2 degrees toe-out. This usually gives the car a nice balance, with enough "cut" into the corner. If the car "cuts" too much, go to zero toe.
Make sure you mount your tie-rods to the upper and outer holes on your Kimbrough servo saver. This is very important for the correct Ackerman angles. Also make sure your servo is centered and mounted right up to the back of the passenger side suspension arm.
Depending on which rims you use, you might have to shave some plastic off of your outer ball cups so they don't bind under max. steering throw.
We almost always stick with 2 degrees of caster.= 1 shim.
Generally we run that Batt. in the "back" position, but this really depends on the track and what you personally like. When the battery is in the back of the car, it gives you more traction, and is usually easier to drive. With the battery moved forward, the car rotates 180's better and has a little more "cut" but less overall steering. This is a little confusing, because most people think that more weight up front equals more steering. In reality, when the battery is in the back position, it allows for more weight transfer which actually gives the car more overall steering. You just have to wait that split second for the weight to transfer to get the additional steering. Hence, why batteries up front give you more cut but less total steering.
Side springs.-Orange or Blue most of the time, and then white if you need a little more cut, or if the car feels lazy going through cut-backs. Never over-preload the side springs. Crank them down just enough to tweak the car. Besides bound up links, this is the largest mistake I see done to Rev.3's. It's very important that the springs "work", which allows the chassis' weight to transfer which gives you steering and traction.
Shock-We usually run Asc. 80wt. shock fluid with our Black spring. If you need more traction, or your track is really bumpy we'll go down as far as 30 wt. and the Asc. blue spring. Generally, if you drop your shock fluid you should drop your spring also.
Damper Tubes-We use Losi light, medium, and heavy fluids. With how fast today's cars are, we usually run light. It lets the car "return" to center quicker. If the track is really large with high speed sweepers we might go to medium or heavy. Your damper tubes should be adjusted in conjunction with your side springs. Put "together" you have a shock, so much like your center shock, when you go heavier on the sides, you can increase you tubes damping.
Tires-Jaco or Trc Grey rears. Start at 1.90
Droop-Your shock length controls how much droop you have(i.e..-how far past horizontal your rear pod hangs in relation to your chassis). Generally we run about 2 or 3 degrees. Again, if your track is really bumpy, you can back the ball cups off your shock to lengthen it and give your car a little more droop. Never go more than 5 degrees(the car will unload too much going into tight turns).
Stock gearing-With today's motors(stock) and batteries we generally run 27-30/100 or 28-31/104. If your track is really tight you would want to be down around 27. Don't gear for run time, gear for lap times. Most of the time we run a smaller pinion than we think we should. It just gets the infield done that much quicker.
Links-MAKE SURE THEY ARE FREE AND STRAIGHT!!!!! This is by far the most important part of your Rev.3. If your links aren't perfect the rest of your preparation is useless. The instruction pamphlet has a good description on how to adjust them correctly. During a race day, check your links after any big accident or if the car just feels inconsistent. To check them during a race day. 1)remove batteries, 2)remove top plate(over motor), 3)take out motor, 4)remove tweak plate(unscrew the two pan heads that go through the main chassis. Now you can feel them for binding/smoothness. It's very important that the motor is removed. Because of it's weight it doesn't let you "feel" the movement of the rear assembly. If they feel bound, remove one front screw for one link side, adjust the opposite link so the graphite "gap" is even, reinstall the screw you removed, and adjust that link until the links are free again.
Note: It is necessary to remove the motor top plate to put the motor in and out of your Rev.3. Our chassis has the motor over 20 thousandths compared to an ASC 12L. Today's motors are much heavier than when the 12L was designed. When drawing the Rev.3 I weighed and measured the newer style motors and centered them within our rear pod. Some people force the motor through the bottom of the car. I think it's pretty easy just to remove the 3 button heads and not force anything.
We use Paragon tire traction and we dope 3/4 front and full rear. Usually we put it on for about 15 minutes, and try to be wiping it off just as you are getting ready to run.
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Old 11-07-2003, 07:13 PM   #4752
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ok...got one last question (hopefully)

its time to get a new speedo for the cleveland race...what should I get? been running a gt-7 and its too big to find room for a receiver pack running a low profile body (trust me...its too big lol!!! ) I was looking at the GM sx-9...masami won the worlds with it...cant be too bad...but I guess he can drive anything and win. Also looking at the new quantum comp. or the ko speedo Chris Doseck used in his spashette trinity car. Lemme know what you think I should go for.
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Old 11-07-2003, 08:09 PM   #4753
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Hey tres what up! Carbondale dec 14th maybe, then you can pay me back.

I run both the bloody six pack in mod and the bloody butterknife in stock. You won't get me in a speed merchent crc associated fight but I will say this, the rev3 or the ck are not mod cars. they do not snap back as fast as a tplate car coming out of the corner and as was said here the springs give out just as much as the tplate but I'll tell you this if I hit the wall with a 8x1 d5 in my tplate car I bet it doesn't ever break the chassis or have that stupid o-ring come off. The roll center may be closer to center but if the car can't center back it don't matter. The forces put to a 12th scale in mod are more then "most" drivers can handle with a rev3 or ck. it takes a real good driver to drive a link car in mod. But with that note most newbies to 12th scale run stock so a link car will let them drive better as long as they don't break the back of the car inhalf or bend the retainer posts over on the edge of the chassis. Since running stock you don't normally have the speed to kill a car that's fine. In the case of mod or mod outdoor you can kill shred and kiss a rev3 or ck good bye very easy and then lose a new racer to the "I can't afford to fix it" excuse. I know this since I bought a ck from a newbie to 12th pavement with a trashed chassis for $50 with a micro servo and a bunch of parts. With a tplate car you can bang down the walls and have less likely a chance of breaking the car and if you do it's only a $4 tplate instead of a $40 chassis. As for tweak most newbies do it with an xcto on the table like all of us did at one time. Ah the good ole days. I will tell anyone starting out that running mod with a link car isn't as easy as a tplate car. But if you’re going to stick to stock run the link.
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Old 11-07-2003, 09:13 PM   #4754
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To get rid of traction rolling basically take away steering. What alot of guys do at big races is they will superglue the sidewalls of the tire to keep the side wall from delfating and causing a traction roll, q-balling is pretty much the same deal (since you are talking away the sidewall, lol) and probalby some of the contact patch.

Speedo... I personally have always been very happy with my quantom compeitions. I really want to find one of the new ones before Cleveland so I can test it out and run it (so if anyone knows where I can get one at my frontdoor within a week send me a PM! lol). However, the old quantom comp should work as good as anything out there.
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Old 11-07-2003, 10:15 PM   #4755
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stormperson--I ran the reds again tonight and the car just had way to much steering. I am going to try stepping down to blue but orange is way to soft. Also I have a Quantum 2 and it kicks a**!!! Got mine from a buddy in Japan.
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