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Tamiya Championship Series

Old 12-11-2012, 02:02 PM
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I'm looking for a nice clean M03 or M03R if anyone has one shoot me a pm.
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Old 12-11-2012, 04:20 PM
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Originally Posted by monkeyracing
So, you can't give us too much detail, but can you at least say that you saw any next generation M chassis stuff? Did Tamiya come to their senses and "de-engineer" the car? Did they draw and quarter the guy responsible for LiFe batteries and 380 sized motors in the M-Four? Even if th gear ratio remains consistent, I'll be happy.
To be honest, I wasn't really paying that much attention during our tour. When we visited the offices, I wanted to greet and catch up with a few friends that I haven't seen in almost a decade. We were so busy chatting that I didn't bother to look around.

In regards to the M-Four, a while ago, I heard rumors that they were going to produce a tub-chassied 540-sized motor version of the chassis. I'm not sure if anything is going to happen with it.
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Old 12-11-2012, 04:29 PM
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Default 2012 Tamiya World Championship - Day 4

Day 4
Friday, November 16, 2012

I'm starting to wonder if I'll ever get a good night's sleep. Shortly after getting out of bed, I was greeted by my neice on Facetime wishing me the best of luck and singing happy birthday. What a sweet way to start the day.

Ohayou gozaimasu Fuji-san.




I love skirts and boots. These were precision.




After breakfast, we piled into the bus and head over to Shizuoka's Twin Messa Exhibition center for today's practice. Our goal for the practice sessions was to do all that we can to be as competitive as possible and retain our "racer" status in order to avoid becoming participants and relegated to "tourist" status lol. We had 3 three minute practice sessions scheduled for today to see how that played out.

Gathering at the side entrance to Twin Messe




The track layout had a similar flow to the Tamiya America track. The exception being section lengths and especially the right side of the track when viewed from the driver's stand...more on that later. Just like the Tamiya track, it's relatively easy to get around but hard to go fast.

The Tamiya World Championship track with new carpet ready for at least one round of dorifto! Or so I thought...






As soon as we setup our pits, we had to purchase a voucher for our control tires, rims, and inserts. Once we had our vouchers, we had to go to the control tire attachment area where we received a bag containing two sets of tires, rims and inserts. We then had to assemble and glue our tires, place them back in the bag, and give them back to the tech inspectors. This was done to level the playing field and prevent racers from doing any gray-area stuff for their tire prep. Before every run, one of the steps in pre-tech was to install our tires before we hit the track. When finished, we would go to post-tech, remove our tires, clean them with Tamiya cleaner spray (which I found out the fast guys weren't doing....whoops) and place them back in the bags for the tech inspectors to collect. No tires ever went to the pits. Oddly enough, Mini and F1 also received spec motors in their race package and those were allowed in the pits. I'm sure all kinds of motor voodoo likely went on in the pits, under tables, or probably in the bathrooms

On a side note, I don't know how we can get it the US, but Tamiya's CA glue accelerator spray is the best stuff we've ever used for tires. The glue dries almost instantly and stays flexible...no brittle white mess.

After control tire attachment was finished, we had to proceed with car inspection where the tech inspectors put your car under a microscope to make sure everything is legit. Once my car successfully passed technical inspection, a chrome sticker with my name was appied to the chassis and sealed with what looked to be nail polish.

The last procedure that we had to complete prior to practice was having our photos taken with our cars. These photos were then placed on laminated placards on a wall in front of the track so that media and spectators can identify drivers.




Finally, we were ready for practice.




Here's a picture of one of our translators, Yuuya, and a couple of assistants.




Here are our other translators, Tom on the left and Eric on the right. Tom recently joined Tamiya and we hope he doesn't get fired after this weekend hehe. Eric was here on contract to provide guidance and have a good time.




During the time between tech inspections and first practice started, the Tamiya staff gathered around our pit area, presented me with a couple of cakes, and everyone joined in singing happy birthday. That was awesome but kind of embarrasing. Still, it was pretty cool.

Practice Session 1
Pre-tech procedures involved going to the tech area 2 heats before my heat to install tires, check ride height, check battery voltage (the device has a light that shows whether the battery passes or fails...no volt meter to see how close we can get), visual inspection, and finally transponder installation. Weight was checked in post-tech so we had to insure that all of our lead was securely attached prior to wrecking lol.

Here's my car after pre-tech. RTF (Ready to Fail)




With my car being placed on the track, I climbed the driver's stand for the first time...Here we go. Wow! My car was an absolute steaming pile! The front end wasn't working and would just slide on entry, do whatever the heck it wanted mid-corner, and oversteered on exit, no overall traction, and no balance. It boogled my mind how such a meticulously well built and setup car could handle so badly. I understand and expected that handling would be a little off because the track was still green and would get better as traction quickly built up. I just didn't expect my car to be that horrible. Remember how I said the track was ready for drifting? The locals didn't get the memo. The moment they put their cars down on the track, Holy Shinto! They were dialed!

Practice Session 2
Between runs, I made wholesale changes to my car. The results? See above for more of the same.

Some time after the second run was completed, I hung out with TRF drivers Kiyo, Taka, and Victor to shoot the poop and discuss setups. They were there as representatives of Tamiya for the show and to race in the TRF challenge. Since Taka's car looked easier to drive than Victor's, I asked if I can borrow his car to take photos and measurements and apply them to my car. He was kind enough to let me basically photocopy his car. Almost everything in my car needed to be changed and I did not have the time to apply those changes before my next run. Most importantly, I found out that I was running the wrong body. The Audi R8 was simply to aggressive for the amount of traction we have. The mild-mannered body of choice was either the HSV-10 or Ferrari 599xx. I've got some homework to do.






Practice Session 3
I knew my car was not on pace, so I used this session to work on figuring out the track and getting a rythm going. As I said earlier, the layout was similar to the Tamiya America track and was rather easy to navigate. However, I struggled mightly with the right side of the track. After the straight, there was a 90 degree left hander that leads into a quick chicane before leading into a small left hand sweeper going into the infield. The turn in point at the end of the straight was the key to this section. Getting it right allowed me to maintain some throttle going into the chicane until I had to lift to make the chicane. Turning in too early had the potential of tearing off the left front corner of the car when I hit the inside wall. Turning in late rewarded me with an off-the-groove excursion into the fuzzy light-gray no-traction zone. Additionally, the high-speed left hander's finishing point that sets the car up for the chicane is somewhat hidden by the inside wall. One of the things I've always struggled with, no matter which track I'm at, is when my car disappears behind a walls. It goes without saying, I pretty much sucked on the right side of the track with the inability to hit my marks consitently.

After the final run of the day, I packed up my gear and made a mad dash to the onsite Tamiya store before they closed for the day. I'll post more info about the store in a later post. I was on a mission to pick up an HSV or Ferrari body as well as some paint for one of those fancy custom at night hotel paint jobs. They had both, but I began to dread having to mask, paint, cutout, decal, and mount up a body (or at least asking for help) along with rebuilding the car from the chassis up that night. The moment I started to say "Fu..." a red glimmer of hope caught the corner of my eye...pre-finished Ferraris bodies! And they were light wieght versions too! Wohoo!

More time to...err... do something else. You see, that day was my birthday, I was away from home, family, and friends, and I'll be darned if I'm going to I spend too much time wrenching on a toy car deep into a Friday night while I'm on vacation in Shizuoka!


Wrenching and Happy Fun Time

When we got back to the hotel, I opted out of dinner and instead worked on the car while snacking on sandwhiches from earlier in the day. I kept the door open so the boys can hang out, eat, drink, be merry, and come and go as they please. The car needed a rebuild because it still had its original parts, which were not bad, but not good, and were only cleaned for the practice sessions and eventual wrecking. Prior to the trip, I pre-built subassemblies (universals, diffs, spools, blown and oiled bearings, etc.) with new parts and saved a huge amount of time by simply swapping things out. By the time, the guys returned from dinner, all I had to do was final setup and mount the body. Rebuilt from the chassis up with Taka's setup in about two hours. Once we were finished working on the car, we got ourselves cleaned up and headed upstairs for some refreshments.

Email is the Century's lounge located on the top floor with magnifient panoramic views of Shizuoka. After several cocktails and teaching the bartender how to mix some new ones, we had to walkabout and get our stumble on. The destination was a place called Our Boozer! This was the pub that previous TCS champions, Corey, Edgar, and John went to on a nightly basis during their trip. Unfortunately, we didn't know where it was located but the bartender at Email looked it up and let us take the following screenshot.

This picture of the map to Our Boozer! was money!




After finishing up our drinks, we went downstairs and headed outside into what could have been a chilly night (I didn't feel a thing!), past the train station, past a bunch of intersections, and then proceeded to get lost. At that point, we did what anybody with a map, a good buzz, a town full of skirt and boot wearing evening goers enjoying a Friday night would do...ask a group of women for directions. They were all super friendly and were helpful until we got lost again. The next group of women not only knew where the pub was, but split up with their friends to take us there and join us for drinks.

Our Boozer!




We were let down to find out that it was closed for remodeling and is now under new ownership. They took us to another bar that didn't look as coozy and ,fortunately, was too full to accomodate us. After walking a while we ended up at a place called "Honey Roasted Peanuts" for who knows how many rounds of Tequilla and Corona.

And here are our boozer! friends.




We had a great time hanging out and suprising me for my birthday.




Thanks for taking your time to check this out. I'll try to post more later this week.

Last edited by rtypec; 12-12-2012 at 12:23 PM.
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Old 12-11-2012, 05:15 PM
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"Winning is fun. I like to have fun."

AWESOME!
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Old 12-11-2012, 07:48 PM
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Default well Done Rod!

Originally Posted by rtypec
Day 4
Friday, November 16, 2012

Thanks for taking your time to check this out. I'll try to post more later this week.
Thanks for sharing-what a fantastic experience.

Cheers,
Marcos
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Old 12-11-2012, 08:09 PM
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Great story! I'm a little jealous. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 12-11-2012, 08:33 PM
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Keep those skirts coming Rod!
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Old 12-12-2012, 05:06 AM
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thank you for posting! I was looking forward to the rc side of the story, but it looks like Japan was a darn good time! I gotta start saving some airfare cash...
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Old 12-12-2012, 08:06 AM
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Default Japan traction additives?

Rod:

If I recall, I heard that at Japan champs you are not allowed to use any traction additives on the tires - correct? I can't imagine getting good traction/setup on fresh carpet with no additives - I hope your series explains what you/others did for traction. I race on carpet almost exclusively (something about WI and winter weather) (basically, asphalt at TCS ALiso Viejo is my asphalt action) and would feel lost without traction sauce. Even if I were to use no traction sauce in prep for going to Japan, it would still not give me info, as I don't think there is a US carpet track that bans sauce, and there is already so much sauce on the carpet of any racetrack that you can't experience a no sauce layout here.

Keep up the great story on the trip - it is FANTASTIC story you are doing - thanks for the effort - let's us non-winners share in your journey (and dream).
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Old 12-12-2012, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by minidriver
Rod:

If I recall, I heard that at Japan champs you are not allowed to use any traction additives on the tires - correct? I can't imagine getting good traction/setup on fresh carpet with no additives - I hope your series explains what you/others did for traction. I race on carpet almost exclusively (something about WI and winter weather) (basically, asphalt at TCS ALiso Viejo is my asphalt action) and would feel lost without traction sauce. Even if I were to use no traction sauce in prep for going to Japan, it would still not give me info, as I don't think there is a US carpet track that bans sauce, and there is already so much sauce on the carpet of any racetrack that you can't experience a no sauce layout here.
We were not allowed to use any kind of tire additives for our tires. Basically, the only time we were able to clean or reglue our tires was immediately after our run in post-tech. We removed the tires and had the option to clean them using Tamiya's spray cleaner. Since it was there, I used it. The tires did feel a little stickier when cleaned. However, I heard later on that the fast guys were brushing or picking carpet fuzz off their tires and putting them back in the bag before handing them to the inspectors.

I was told that even though the carpet used at the Tamiya World's is brand new, afterwards it will be rolled up and used at other events or possible races.

The fast guys showed up to the track knowing which body to run and had great baseline setups. They did their homework prior to the event and it really showed.

As for me, although I was practicing at TQ prior to receiving the official rules, I only had a couple of days to run in World's spec...so I didn't really gather any useful information from my tests, even when running with no sauce on the Jack/STX permeated surface that I was practicing on. I'll post the setup later, but if I remember correctly, the changes that made the biggest difference was making the rear wheelbase was as long as possible, rear blocks changed to 1XA and 1F, using a flipped one piece 1C block on the front rear, getting downtravels right, and most importantly an HSV or Ferrari body.
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Old 12-12-2012, 11:54 AM
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Rod - awesome write up, almost feels like I was there with you minus seeing all those skirts and boots in person

Can't wait to see the rest of your adventure
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Old 12-12-2012, 04:12 PM
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Originally Posted by rtypec
We were not allowed to use any kind of tire additives for our tires. Basically, the only time we were able to clean or reglue our tires was immediately after our run in post-tech. We removed the tires and had the option to clean them using Tamiya's spray cleaner. Since it was there, I used it. The tires did feel a little stickier when cleaned. However, I heard later on that the fast guys were brushing or picking carpet fuzz off their tires and putting them back in the bag before handing them to the inspectors.

I was told that even though the carpet used at the Tamiya World's is brand new, afterwards it will be rolled up and used at other events or possible races.
Hi Rod, nice review on the racing trip.
The carpet almost sounds like what we run on over the winter months. It is only used in one building then rolled and stored over the boiler room, where it gets dry and slippy till the next race day. Do you think the fast guys avoided cleaning due to picking up fuzz and other loose particles on the track?
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Old 12-12-2012, 06:28 PM
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Default Tcs

Question for the powers at Tamiya in regards to the switch from 17.5 to 13.5 in 12th scale.are most of the tracks on the schedule big enough and have good grip to run 13.5? The reason I am asking is the track for our tcs race is small with no grip.could it be up to the host site to set the motor limit depending on the size of the track? Ok now let the debate begin
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Old 12-12-2012, 07:06 PM
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Originally Posted by subaru73
Question for the powers at Tamiya in regards to the switch from 17.5 to 13.5 in 12th scale.are most of the tracks on the schedule big enough and have good grip to run 13.5? The reason I am asking is the track for our tcs race is small with no grip.could it be up to the host site to set the motor limit depending on the size of the track? Ok now let the debate begin
I ran 17.5 1/12 on a small track last year....honestly, I nearly fell asleep during the race, it was the most boring car I ever drove. It was quite high grip though!

Maybe 13.5 will mean its possible to run Tamiya spurs? As far as I could tell on 17.5 you needed a far bigger pinion than you could get on there without modding.
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Old 12-12-2012, 08:41 PM
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Default TCS 12th scale, try it, you'll like it !

Originally Posted by subaru73
Question for the powers at Tamiya in regards to the switch from 17.5 to 13.5 in 12th scale.are most of the tracks on the schedule big enough and have good grip to run 13.5? The reason I am asking is the track for our tcs race is small with no grip.could it be up to the host site to set the motor limit depending on the size of the track? Ok now let the debate begin
Originally Posted by DaveG28
I ran 17.5 1/12 on a small track last year....honestly, I nearly fell asleep during the race, it was the most boring car I ever drove. It was quite high grip though!

Maybe 13.5 will mean its possible to run Tamiya spurs? As far as I could tell on 17.5 you needed a far bigger pinion than you could get on there without modding.
imo
13.5 blinky is not "much" more powerful than 17.5
Rollout is not so different either, about 10mm less than 17.5 (i.e. 105 vs: 95 at Tamiya America)

My feeling is the more 12th scale RM-01's racing in TCS the better
How we get there is more than likely based on racer feedback

17.5, 13.5, I've run both, enjoy both, as long as the motor is in a 12th scale car

Last edited by RedBullFiXX; 12-13-2012 at 06:55 AM.
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