First ESC?

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Old 10-13-2016, 11:50 AM
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Default First ESC?

I was reading somewhere that the first electronic speed controller was make by Novak but I remember that the first one was made by Delta (I can remember seeing it for the first time like yesterday...red case FET ESC). Google was unable to help, can anyone else here help?
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Old 10-13-2016, 12:58 PM
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I have 2 Robbe models over here, with a huge transistor and for the reverse a relais.
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Old 10-13-2016, 04:02 PM
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Found it! It was the Delta Autodrive. Later ones came in a black case, only the very early ones came in red.
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Old 10-16-2016, 05:46 PM
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The Delta was around 1984 and Novak 1985.
Yet in 1980 many racers I knew were using a Demon 2 ESC and there were many others available back then, although Parma resistors were much more common due to the cost of ESCs.
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Old 10-16-2016, 07:01 PM
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Old 10-17-2016, 08:53 AM
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Thank you Tamiya Dan!
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Old 10-17-2016, 02:51 PM
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Old 11-10-2016, 06:40 PM
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@Tamiyadan thanks for the awesome details. Brought back some memories.

Your post reminded me of a post I came across about 7 years ago on another forum about what happened to the "original" Tekin. Long read but very interesting if you have the time. Here is the link.

http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/rc-c...ned-tekin.html

By the way my first ESC was a Futaba MC 210 CB followed shortly by a MC 112B if I remember right.

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Old 11-10-2016, 06:52 PM
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Cool read. Thanks for sharing
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Old 12-24-2016, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Tamiyadan View Post
jomac was making ESCs in the late 1970s up till 1986.

what changed was the autodrive ran mosfets in parallel.

before the autodrive most escs of the day run a single transistor with whatever highest rating that could be found.

at the time most esc were just designed by hobbyists with little electronics backgrounds.

when Kevin came along he used his electrical engineering background and stepped up the amperage an ESC could handle by paralleling the mosfets together. Kevin also made the change from power transistor to mosfets

the Delta autodrive was designed by Kevin Orton he also developed the first Peak detection chargers for batteries, kevin founded Tekin.

he lifted the entire hobby so bob novak stepped up his game as well with the first novak ESC.

before 1984 ESC existed most were homebrew, Jomac made commercial versions, Mardave had escs from the 1960s. Tamiya had transistorized MSCs in the later 1970s and early 1980s. the difference was usually they had a single transistor rated for about 15amps handling the power this was fine for the original 540 and 380 motors. they had brakes and most were adjustable.


the first modern version of the ESC as we know it was the delta autodrive followed by novak. but before that escs did exist they couldn't handle much amperage and were very expensive making the MSC the way to go before 1984. there were hybrid MSCs some people designed a 555 timer that pulsed power through a power transistor and used the msc switch as a low amperage trigger for the gate on the transistor.

the demon 2 was released in 1977 designed by Nick Adams in great Britain.
Demon Power Products was started in 1979.
1981 the demon 2c came out, it had a relay for a full power bypass at full throttle that basically turned off the transistor and ran 1:1 off the battery.
again this was because all the early esc designs used a single transistor so as they heated up the efficiency dropped off and the amperage they could carry dropped off.

Cs electronic had a ESC in 1979 again only one transistor

Simprop SAM was around from 1980 to 1982 again pre mosfet.

the robbe 12 was the first esc they made in 1981 similar to the demon 2c it had a relay for full power bypass of the transistor at full throttle.

Ko pro released their first esc in 1986 it was mosfet.

the change in amperage that a ESC could handle allowed Offroad to blossom you went from 15amps/40 amp peak to like 360amps 500peak. buggies off jumps produced massive 200-250amp spot power spikes with 540 silver can motors.

so pre 1984 most escs were mostly used on-road with 4 cell packs, and post 1984 you went to all cars with 6-7 cell packs.
Awesome write up, thanks for the history lesson I didn't know any of that & I wonder how many of these vintage speed controllers are still about & going?
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