1. R/C Car Racing overview
The different types of cars
Much like the full scale sport, there are many different facets and classes of radio controlled car racing. There are cars that are 'nitro' Internal Combustion powered, and others are electric motor & battery. The cars can be front-wheel-drive, four-wheel-drive, or rear-wheel-drive. Some are made for very specific classes, where as some others can span multple classes with different motor cobinations.
The different types of tracks
At North Harbour Radio Controlled Car Club, we race indoors on carpet. This means we currently only host electric powered vehicles. However there are many different clubs, and there are lots of track types.
- Onroad racing that can happen indoors on carpet, or outdoors on tarmac surfaces. Onroad racing tends to stick to a very flat surface without elevation changes.
- Offroad racing that is raced on dirt with jumps outdoors. And can also race 'clean' indoors on carpet, where we put jumps down.
- There are other fringe r/c clubs host other formats of racing, such as stockcars.
At NHRCCC we host Onroad indoors, & Offroad indoors. Currently we race each once a month on different Saturdays.
The different types of power trains
We host only electric motor powered cars. However in the past we had an outdoor circuit in Albany where we hosted IC (internal combustion, or 'nitro') Touring cars & EP (electric powered) cars in the same meeting. Currently Auckland does not have an outdoor venue for racing IC Onroad, but there are two clubs that host IC Offroad. Since we host EP only, here is a little more information about the variety of electric motors. In general there are 2 types, brushed and brushless.
For most introduction classes such as M-05 or Tamiya GT we use very basic brushed motors. Motors that come with the kits, that we have nicknamed 'Silvercan'. They are not abale to be maintained, and the timing is fixed. It keeps makes them perfect for entry level racing as they are cheap, and last a very long time.
Brushless motors have replaced traditional brushed motors in other classes. In the past, to get more power - brushes and commutators were soft to make maximum power, and required constant maintaince. The new generation of brushless motors have no more wearing parts (maybe just check the bearings every now and again).
Things to know about brushless
- Spec Motor : some classes run a spec motor that you'll need to buy from the club
- Turns : motor power is determined by the turns. The lower the turns the more powerful. You'll see classes like 13.5T Touring Stock & 21.5T Touring Stock. 13.5T is the more powerful. Touring modified is open, and can go as low as 4T or 5T motors.
- Size : check when buying that you get the correct size, there is 540 & 550. They are not the same, check with your local r/c suppiler store.
The different types of batteries
With the battery war still raging over the latest laptops & mobiles, we have seen capacity numbers explode. Speaking of explode, care is needed when charging Lipo & Life batteries. You will need a Battery Charging bag.