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Mad Ax

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About Mad Ax

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  • Location
    Lurking among the gothic shadows of Bath
  • Interests
    Streetfighters, motorbikes, fiction writing

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  1. Wow - no updates here since July last year! Another (non-RC-related) project kinda jumped out at me around that time, and I've pretty much thrown myself into it so hard that I forgot all about the CarManager project that I use to generate my tasks list and keep this thread updated. So I haven't bothered to come in here since then. I've still got a lot of admin to do here, the outstanding tasks are way far behind, and with not that much solid stuff on the calendar yet (I almost booked a road trip to Tamiya Junkies this weekend but it was going to cost me nearly £200 all-in), there's not really a lot of urgent stuff on the list. As it stands, CarManager is working well but it's a bit of a pain. If I want to add a task or purchase or write some some RC-related thoughts or see what's on my purchase list, I have to go power up my laptop, load up Visual Studio, wait for it to load, wait for it to build the project, then start the net listener, then find out what my laptop's IP address is today so I can access it via my phone or tablet. It would be so much nicer if it was just switched on somewhere, all the time. Also in my business life I'm looking to move out of application software and into embedded / IoT and other small device stuff, so I figured I could demonstrate my enthusiasm by buying a Raspberry Pi and hosting CarManager on it. So I waited in eager anticipation for the box to drop through the door, before I loaded up Visual Studio and started building a version of CarManager for the linux-arm environment. Aaaand, that's where it all fell apart. Apparently CarManager works absolutely fine in debug mode, but if I try to publish it I have all manner of version conflicts with Angular. And because it's running with a really old version of Angular, it's going to be a whole world of pain to fix. Which is kind of annoying, since I had the option of buying a Raspberry Pi for this project, or some new shocks for the CFX-W, which would not only improve its performance for the upcoming SST in April but also give me a set of spare shocks to use on the CC01 Hop-up vs Homebrew project that has dragged on way too long (and not been touched since mid-2020, if memory serves). So - it looks like my spare time is now well and truly booked out to redeveloping CarManager with more modern dependencies, and the Pi is going to be a blobby-looking paperweight for a few more months. On the plus side, it has kind of encouraged me to get back to using CarManager again (hopefully I'll be able to run the old version as I develop the new one) so I can update my tasks list and maybe get a handle on some of these forgotten projects again.
  2. Most of my vintage cars are made for running, and generally I run most at vintage race meets, so I need something reliable and competitive. The vintage race scene in the UK has got hugely competitive, so much so the rules have had to be tightened up a lot this year. Turning up with a vintage Holiday Buggy with period radio and MSC doesn't cut it on the track like it did just a few years ago. There's no reason why you can't race with an MSC, NiMH and 27MHz radio, but you really want the lightness and longevity of LiPo, smoothness of an ESC and reliability of 2.4GHz when you're on track with a bunch of other cars. I went through a phase of trying to overpower everything, but these days I try to keep speeds reasonable. I can't control a car that's too fast on track. Also these days I find brushed is better value for money than brushless - OK, there are some cheap brushless systems on the market, but in my experience they're clunky, cog really bad and they're not as fast as they pretend to be. And I've had a few cheap brushless ESCs let the magic smoke out for no obvious reason. A 1060 ESC is solid and reliable (although there are increasing reports of failures recently, quality may be suffering under the chip shortage?) and there are rebuildable adjustable timing brushed motors for less than £20. Are they as good as the mod motors from the 90s? No, probably not, but they work well enough for me and they're cheap enough to replace if they fry - cheaper than sourcing parts for a vintage mod motor, anyway. When it comes to servos - back in the early 90s I only ever had the cheap ones that came with the radios. I didn't even know fast servos were a thing. I didn't really know they were a thing until the last decade, when I realised how much difference they make in a race car. Now almost all of my cars have fast-ish servos in them, even if they're cheap Alturn ones. I've had countless Alturn servos (hi speed for race cars, hi torque for crawlers) and have been really impressed for the price, although availability became a problem a year or so ago and I haven't bought any more since then. I've got a bunch of basic servos lying around which I'll use in big rigs and in a pinch I'll stick them in a project just to test it out, but I almost always plan on getting a fast servo fitted once it moves into the Runner category, and if I'm going to race it seriously it'll get a Savox of some sort. It's been years since I drove a car with an MSC, and part of me wonders if I'd enjoy the directness again. My only ever childhood new built was a Mud Blaster, and if Tamiya happen to re-release it as a complete kit, I might just think about kitting one out with that vintage MSC for nostalgia. Then again, for true nostalgia I'd have to run it on the lane behind my house, where there are lots of parked cars, so maybe I'd worry about the MSC jamming and damaging other people's property. I don't really have a place to go where I can afford for a car to go out of control. I won't go back to NiMH - I've had too many problems with stick packs getting unbalanced and giving false peaks - so I'd need to fit a LiPo alarm, and I've had problems with those causing interference with the radio, which is totally not what you want with an MSC... But - I have absolutely no problem with people who want to run their cars with vintage electrics. It's your hobby, you can enjoy it however you like, I have respect for people with the patience to track down period-correct radios and motors, and I respect the choice to run things exactly as they were run back in the day, ramps made from plywood from your dad's shed, jumpers for track markings etc
  3. Welcome aboard, great quality builds there. We are the same age, I decided to get back into Tamiya RC in my mid-20s when I didn't have my own money. Doing it now is much better, so good choice
  4. Consider the MST CMX / CFX axles - they're fairly narrow. I don't have a set to measure, but they might be close enough. The CMX fits nicely under other Tamiya hardbodies like the Blackfoot. The wheelbase will probably be too long in stock form, but you might be able to use the axles with that Shapeways kit or make new rails to shorten the CMX. The CFX has the motor mounted up front (it might fit under the Jeep body, not sure), the CMX is mounted low in the centre - depending on how much centre clearance and articulation you want, you might be able the mount the Willy body over it.
  5. it wasn't quite that bad here, it's been cold and dry so the mud isn't that deep, but the top layer (maybe only 10-20mm) is like grease. The hills around here are chalk, so it's a really light coloured mud and it dries almost white. I guess it would be axle-deep if people had been driving on it, but there's no vehicle access in the area I went walking yesterday. Another place I go is military owned and off-limits to vehicles but people take their 4x4s there anyway, that gets really deep sometimes.
  6. Well I've not long been back - it was nice and frosty this morning but it always thaws before mid-morning. It's been mostly dry for a few days so that constant freeze-thaw cycle has left the top of the ground covered in a slick, filthy slurry of chalk mud. It caked up the soles of my walking boots and I nearly fell over about 6 times, ended up being out only for 35 minutes in the end as it wasn't entirely enjoyable. Still, got another 30 minutes to get cleaned up before the school run, then it's Dragon Rescue Riders and reheated sausage and mash pie that I made last night.
  7. I always back white with silver before adding black (in fact if you go silver, you don't need black, it just makes the interior look nicer). I think the other big problem it Tamiya's white paint colour is not very nice. It's a very pure white, like they used on fridges and washing machines before they went all fancy brushed aluminium colour. Most white cars aren't pure white, they've got hints of other colours blended in. If you had an airbrush you could try to mix in a tiny amount of something else to try to get a nicer shade. I've got an airbrush but never got around to trying this since I don't do many all-white cars. Maybe just a roof or panel in white, or a lot of block colour graphics to take the eye off the shade. My Globe Liner (obviously ABS, not polycarb) is moulded in pure white and painted in Ford Diamond White (Halfords rattle can). The difference between the unpainted body and the painted one was astounding, even before all the little details were painted. The plain body looked like a cheap toy with that pure white colour, with the Diamond White (which isn't far off double cream) it looked real.
  8. It's Friday again, peeps! Going to be a really quiet one for me. My wife has just set off for a solo weekend by the seaside, she starts a gruelling new work contract on Monday (well, gruelling for someone who typically works her own hours from her bedroom, actually kinda easy for those of up who do the typical 9-5 grind ) so she's making the most of her last weekend of freedom (well, for 8 weeks anyway, until the contract ends) and getting away for some chilly sea air. That means it's just me and the child this weekend. I'm going to try to finish work at 1pm so I can get out for a frosty walk across the fields, then a spot of tidying up before I get the child from school at 5ish. Reheated dinner, watch some Dragon Rescue Riders, bedtime, then the rest of the night to myself. I've made no solid plans but it might be good to get back to editing the novel again. Saturday - lazy morning, then drive down to a local stately home for a walk around the garden with the daughter and the mother-in-law. Probably justify a lunch in the cafe and take the lazy way home, then probably do some tidying up or play some games or puzzles with the child. Depending on time, I might possibly start building my Super Hotshot while we watch a film. After child bedtime, I'll cook myself a chilli using some sauce left over from a campfire stew I made last weekend (relax, it's been in the freezer since Monday), throw in some minced beef and jalapenos and serve with sour cream and nachos. Plenty of beers to kill off the jalapenos. Probably watch a film or catch up on some series. Sunday - another lazy morning, probably have a lazy day at home. TBH after all those jalapenos I won't want to be far from the porcelain throne. Hopefully a day for drinking hot chocolate, eating marshmallows, snuggling under a blanket and watching Disney films. I have to do the Monday school run this week, so take it easy on the tinned beverages and reduce the jalapeno content of my Sunday Night Pizza. What's everyone else up to?
  9. Sorry to hear the news @InsaneJim69, let's hope you get a better weekend this time and the test results are good.
  10. That looks fab! I'm not familiar with the CEN, but I find myself intrigued too, there's no such thing as too many solid axle monster trucks
  11. thanks for the extra info @Bash, it's been hard getting info on tyres and the cheaper brands can be hit and miss (even if they can be found). Gool RC might be worth a look for a bigger truck, without the comedy lettering of the HPI tyres
  12. Bead inner diameter: 48.7mm / 1.92" Bead rim diameter: 54.9mm / 2.16" Width: 58.5mm / 3.94"
  13. MTX-1 and WW2 wheel Tyre-swapping The wheels might be the same, but I doubt you'll get these tyres on a Konghead
  14. while I'm here, I figure I'll go over the MTX-1 and WR-02 wheels as well. The wheels and tyres I have here are the rears from a Wild Willy 2, which I believe are the same as those on the Konghead. For the record, they will not fit on the MTX-1 front axle without a wide hex (10mm should be fine). Here's a WW2 tyre. Rolling diameter: 111.6mm / 3.94" Width: 67.0mm / 2.64"
  15. Once again, I popped the bead into the inner lip. The pronounced sidewall profile hides the excess wheel rim. The lettering on these tyres looks a bit too cartoony for my liking, but the profile is good on these wheels.
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