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Found 6 results

  1. I've posted a few Back to the Track series in the past, each time documenting my return to the wonderful world of indoor club racing, each time starting full of enthusiasm and delight and, as often as not, ending a few months later in apathy and boredom when I hit my plateau and get bored of getting nowhere, declare that I don't really enjoy racing and pack it all in for another year or two. Will this time be any different? Who knows! But this has been something I've wanted to do for a little while, so here's a nice and typically long opening post to get us all started. TL;DR: I went back racing. Continue to the next post if you don't care about my epic ramblings on the state of my life I haven't been a regular racer since I retired my M03 a few years back. We raced to Clubman rules, with a Saturn 20 control motor, Sweep control tyres, and bearings and oil shocks and springs being the only allowed hop-ups. By that time everybody was using the M05, and no matter how hard I raced I could never quite get on the back of the top racers. It might have been my skill, it might have been my setup, it might have been the deficit of the M03 against the M05; more likely it was all of them, in various measure. Either way, I got bored of having to pick up 3rd place whenever somebody else didn't show. I got frustrated that my hopes for a podium finish in the championship hinged not on my success but everybody else's failure. I shouldn't really race for the trophy but there's got to be a goal, otherwise it wouldn't be racing, it would be bashing, and I felt (rightly or wrongly) that my laptimes were as good as they were ever going to get. So, why am I going back again? Well, various reason. 1. My 2018 Revival Failure. I went to the 2018 Iconic Revival full of enthusiasm and confidence. I had a great car (a vintage Top Force with vintage hop-ups) which had done me well the previous year, I'd raced well at the opening round of the Iconic Cup that spring (unfortunately I couldn't make any other rounds, as that turned out to be the highlight of my RC year), the weather had been fantastic and we were all looking forward to a dry weekend. The reality was different. I'd failed to properly prepare the Top Force and it punished me for it in every race - loose screws, seized suspension, the lot. I let the red mist descend when I couldn't get it to drive straight, and ruined most of my heats with bad driving. The weather turned the day before the event, treating us to three days of downpour, and the pit shop didn't have any wet tyres in stock. I, as an infrequent off-road racer, didn't have any wet tyres either. To top it all off, I was taken ill and spent half the weekend in the toilet tent. My wife came down with the same virus but owing to a medical condition, she was taken into hospital on the Sunday morning, having to leave our 18-month old daughter in the care of friends. As a good father I should have aborted my race weekend and made the 4 hour drive home, but unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you see it) my camper was at the very back of the camping field and blocked in by at least 5 other tents and caravans, so there was no way I was getting off site until the end of the day. Plus, given heavy winds, a lot of gazebos had been damaged so I'd offered my awning to some other racers - leaving early would have left them and their kit out in the rain again. Despite all that, I managed to get 2nd place by the first corner of the C final and was all set to hold the position - until the timing system failed and the race was aborted. I started badly in the re-start, was plum last after the first lap, and two laps in the car became impossible to drive. In a proper example of racetrack bad manners, I stormed off the rostrum after a huge head-on crash with a wooden post, to discover the Top Force had lost a kingpin from the front hub. No wonder I couldn't drive it. Why is this relevant? Well, the Revival is usually the highlight of my year. Bad weather and ill health can't be helped, but I could have done a lot better if I'd prepared and practised. I underestimated how much prep the Top Force needed and overestimated my ability as a driver. Taking a hiatus from racing had not just affected my laptimes, it had affected my judgement, and my enjoyment of a rare weekend away. I left the venue determined to do better next year. 2. My 2019 Iconic Success I only managed two races in 2019: the first round of the Iconic Cup at Mendip RC Raceway in April, and the Iconic Revival at Bingham Model Raceway in July. First change I made from 2018 was downgrading my ability rating from 5/10 to 3/10. Less expectation on myself and less embarrassment if I had a bad day. I never expected success at Mendip because my TL01-LA didn't have the speed tuned gear set, and was up against much newer chassis in the Super Stock class (the LA isn't eligible for the Stock class). Mendip is fast, so the speed tuned gear set is pretty essential. Even with the biggest pinion, I was being slaughtered on the back straight - it didn't matter how much corner speed I could carry (and as a 3/10 driver with limited tyre and spring options and an older chassis, I was never going to run rings around the class leaders) I couldn't get close to the FTD. But that didn't matter. I focused on small setting changes and improving my technique. I found a setting that kept oversteer to a minimum out of the tight hairpin and, as temps came up, learnt to drive around the grip-roll that started to occur there. Despite having a(nother) upset stomach all day (who would believe it..?) I had a really enjoyable time, improved every race and went home feeling happy. I wouldn't race again until the Revival in July, where I campaigned a new-built Novafox and my fully-restored Top Force. It was almost a disaster - my older MRT transponders don't work with BMR's new timing system - but tireless Revival organiser John Weston loaned me his spare, saving my weekend. The new pit shop (local heroes and new friends Racecraft RC) had a great supply of wet weather tyres, so even the anticipated downpours couldn't spoil my challenge. The Fox was epic. Properly prepared with a rebuilt Super Stock BZ, it had just the right amount of speed for the wet weather. Like at the Cup, I didn't expect to get on the podium - but I went out to enjoy my racing and improve every heat, and that's just what I did. Top day. The Top Force was almost a failure - a brand new Alturn high-speed race servo (a model I've been using for a long time) turned out to be slower than a slow thing on national slow day. I've now had a couple of really slow Alturns - I won't be buying any more. Adie from Racecraft had a spare race servo lying around which wast just perfect. Disaster averted, the Top Force was an absolute dream. I didn't go out to win - I went out to improve, and that's what I did. I qualified 3rd in the C final, with a qualifying time that was miles away from either 2nd or 4th, and I figured if I stayed out of trouble I'd take home the 3rd place trophy. I got tangled in an incident in the first corner and was last, but I kept my cool, reeled in my competitors, made neat, careful passes and - thanks to the mechanical breakdowns of my closes rivals - finished in 2nd. For the first time in ages, I genuinely felt like I'd earned my trophy. Why is this relevant? Because I really enjoyed racing. For the first time in an age, it wasn't just about getting drunk with mates, talking nonsense about toy cars, eating fried food and camping out in the rain. It was about racing, as well. I really got my money's worth that weekend. So I figured - if I'm seeing results from my racing just by being patient and taking time to learn, how much more would I see if I did that every week? Is it time to go back to the club? And how much better will I race at the Revival next year if I get in some regular practice? 3. My 2019 Rut OK, so the whiny and self-absorbed bit now - outside of RC, I've really struggled to find a happy place this year. With a 2.5 year old in the house it's hard to be anything but Dad. Being Dad is OK (it's not every day I can even bring myself to say that), sometimes it's the best thing in the world (I really mean that) but it's so hard to being anything else. Once the bedtime story is read and the toys are tidied up there's precious little evening left. Add to that the exhaustion of disrupted sleep and interrupted downtime, and once my duties are over, all I can do is flop into the sofa. The things that my life used to be about have fallen away. It's hard to write good music in a brain that's cluttered with nursery rhymes and kid's TV theme tunes. It's hard to write good fiction when you're used to tempering every thought for toddler ears. So I figured I could either sit on the sofa, feeling miserable and yearning for that one weekend every month when I can pack up the camper with toy cars and head off for a couple of days of freedom, or I can use the time I've got to go out and have fun. So really, that's it. WWMCC races on Monday nights, and Monday is my night off. I get Fridays off, too. I'm allowed to go do whatever I want on those nights (provided it's legal and compatible with continued marriage). So instead of locking myself in my studio and feeling sorry for myself, I decided I'd get out and actually do something. So... Let's go racing!
  2. (Thank you Doc Brown, for the title quote) For the last few years I've been club-racing with a TT01E. Yes, you heard me right, that big heavy bathtubbed car from the late '90s (I think?) has been battling it out on the surfaces of nearby tracks for a while now. Of course, it's no TRF, but it can swing some mean punches if need be, and it's super-cheap to run. I run it in the occasional club race, and of course the Dutch Tamiya Cup against other TTs. While the newer TT02Rs are formidable cars I've found that with the right setup it can still hold its own against them. I've owned the car for 6 years, and while it's a bit of a Trigger's Broom by now it's still mostly original. But first, the specs: - TT01E, originally kit #58433, but since they're all pretty much the same what body shell it came with isn't really relevant anymore. - Savox SC-1252MG servo - Hobbywing Quicrun 1060 - Various spec-mandated motors. Mostly Carson Cup Machines, but the occasional Torque Tuned or even Sport Tuned has been in here. I think in the course of me racing it it's had at least 10 different motors in it. - Full ball bearings - Aluminium center shaft. - #53673 TGS/TT toe-in rear uprights - HobbyKing OrangeRX GR300 receiver, paired to my Spektrum DX3S radio - MyLaps RC4 personal transponder. Of course I've modified a few things to make it stand up to the rigors of racing. Let's start at the front. (yes there's a 1 on the bumper. I used to have two, and this was my way to tell them apart) The Y-cable running the length of the car has two functions. Firstly, it delivers power to the transponder in the nose. The rear half plugs in to a wiring loom in my bodies for lights (and in some cases, a servo for the driver's head). I've done a few endurance races with this chassis where having lights was mandatory. Plus, a small light set doesn't add a lot of weight, but it helps with the visibility of your car. I've moved the body posts to the bumper plate. This makes swapping bodies between this chassis and the TRF a lot easier, as they're in the same location as the 419. In the front bumper I've made a small cutout for my transponder. Having it right there in the nose means I just have to push my nose past someone to score a lap in before they do. Shocks are Yeah Racing Shock Gear shocks. They're cheap shocks that offer 80% of the smoothness of TRF shocks for 40% of the price. I rebuild them once a year (or so..) and they hardly leak any oil. I've set them up with about 1mm of rebound to help carry the heavy car. 3Racing supplied the 6mm wheel hexes. Stock TTs come with plastic 5(ish..)mm wide hexes, but this will result in a car that's just slightly too narrow for racing (about 185ishmm). You can go to 6mm hexes to help with that. All racing wheels have 0 offset, so anything that increases track to about 190mm helps. On the front I've got universals, and I've changed the diff outdrives to the smaller, metal kind. Those allow me to choose whatever universal I see fit instead of having to work with the bulky plastic stock outdrives. I've built my own turnbuckle steering set with some 5mm adjusters I had in stock, and some turnbuckles. Yes, that's rust on the one connected to the servo. It looks worse than it is, and it's the result of running a wet race ONCE. I like it. It starts conversations. The steering bellcranks are running on ball bearings, but are still the stock plastic ones. They're getting a bit sloppy around the step screws, but with the official Tamiya hopup for that being as expensive as it is I guess I'll invest in a new plastic set should the slop get too bad to handle. Also visible here is the aluminium center shaft. On to the electronics-deck! Nothing too fancy here. I've shortened the wires going to the receiver from the ESC and the steering servo to keep wiring lengths manageable. Another thing I have done is solder a different on/off switch to the ESC. As standard the QR1060 comes with a very small, waterproof on/off switch. That doesn't fit in the big square cutout so I soldered in a switch from a broken TEU101BK I had laying around. Often, for post-race scrutineering I have to hand in the car turned off. The easier the switch is to get to, the better it is. (Also see the giant On/Off sticker next to it). Currently there's a simple heatsink fitted to the motor (#53664 if I'm not mistaken). For indoor use this is recommended to keep motor temperatures down slightly. Some people mount fans to it, I haven't seen the use to do so. Outdoors I usually take it off, or not mount it at all, as the wide-open layout of most outdoor tracks mean lower motor temperatures. Opposite the electronics bay is the battery compartment. I've removed all the ribs there to be able to fit square lipos. I've padded out the compartment with a bit of sticky foam. This keeps the batteries nice and snug. In fact, they're in there so tightly the strap (with a bit of white paint on the word Tamiya) really is just a formality. It'll stay put regardless. Moving further back there's the rear bumper (yes, that is a block of foam. It looks crude but it's yet to fail me), and the YR rear shocks. I've put a bit of red paint on the collar for easy adjustments. You can see the slightly different type of plastic used for the toe-in rear hubs. Also note, no universals in the rear. There's no specific benefit to using them in the rear I've found, other than lightening your wallet. I've used the body mounts that run backwards slightly for all my bodies. This seems to prevent tucking the rear in a collision, and as most bodies are coupe-style, with sloping rears, this allows for shorter body posts and less wobble. (And there's a spare body clip on the rear post. The motor's magnets pick up 1 or 2 body clips each run. I've yet to buy body clips, my car finds them for me ) So what does that all look like when it's on wheels? Very noticable in this picture is the rear toe-in, and a bit of toe-out on the front. There's enough slop in the front that a measurement is mostly useless, but I tend to go by Straight Ahead > A bit out > A bit in on my setup sheets. So far it's worked. Yes, that's my real-life name, and a decal of one of its previous achievements, coming in 3rd in the Tamiya International M-chassis Challenge earlier this year. And this is my new body shell, a Mazda RX7. Not the lightest body shell ever, but oh boy does it look the part! This is my previous body set. It's a bit knackered now, so I've replaced it with the Mazda. Those wheels are the required cup wheels for the Tamiya Cup. Right, so that's it for the introduction of my racer. I'll update this thread with the TT-specific things I've done (and am doing) to make it go fast.
  3. Hi All, Selling this Suzuki Swift on behalf of a friend. Looks like it's only been run once or twice. Body shell looks practically as good as new with no splits etc. Tyres look to have been glued but are nice and soft with no splits or cracks. A bit dusty and box is a bit squashed. No servo or radio gear but includes standard silver can and manual and box. Sadly the LED light unit is not present. What you see in the photos is what you will receive. £55 delivered to UK or nearest offer. Payment via PayPal gift please. Will pack securely. Let me know if you have any questions.
  4. Here's an idea that's been going through my mind a couple of times: I love the look of the Sand Scorcher. IMHO it's one of the most scale bodies that Tamiya have ever done. And while I'd love to get an SRB, it seems that every affordable SRB slips from my fingers, and new is great, but expensive. Also, I don't need yet another chassis to abuse and to adore. And that's why I'm going to build something out of a TT01E. Why a TT, I hear you ask? First and formost, I have one not doing anything. It's been last year's Tamiya Cup-runner, but started to wear down severly. I was offered a basically-brand-new TT01E for peanuts, and transferred all the go-faster stuff to the new car, leaving this poor chassis in the back of the workshop up on some stands. Until today. @Fuijo had a spare Scorcher shell I could use to kick this project underway, so back onto the work bench my old TT went, and I plopped the VW body on just to see what needed to be done. Well, the wheelbase is off, but I already figured that out. The good news is that the body fits on the chassis without interference from the main bath tub. Also good news is that the wheelbase is less off than I thought it would be. However... The front and rear bumper supports need to get lobbed off. In the front it just might work with the nose cone on, but the one in the rear sticks out too far to be of any use. First issue: wheelbase. Tamiya gives you two options to build the car, the 'normal' 257mm and short wheelbase. Short being about 251mm, and designed with the Porsche 911 and Capri and such in mind. Converting is simply a matter of flipping the arms. On the left = regular wheelbase, and on the right is short wheelbase. This gets us in the ballpark, but not quite.... This is where I had a bit of a change of mind. What if, instead of going for a slammed street look, I lifted the car up and turned it into a rally bug? The distance from the wheels to the wheel arches would disguise the wheelbase being off (by about 5mm, I think), and while it would impact its on-road performance it would turn the car into an all-road plaything. Excellent! What I'll try next time I can find some time in my schedule: - See if I can cut away the bumpstops on the chassis to allow the arms to hang down further. - Figure out a way to attach the body - dig into my spare parts pile to make this car a complete runner again.
  5. Hi! Does anyone have a Tamiya TT01E knocking about? Thanks, Sam
  6. As I promised, here is a small overview of my cars so far. My first ever RC car I bought when I was 12. It was an M02 Alpine A110, and it was well used and abused throughout the years. I raced it in the Eurocup, where it soon found itself hopelessly outclassed against the (then-new) M03s. I parked it in the attic and forgot all about it. However, four years ago, my then-office decided to have a team-building exercise; build and race TT01s against the other departments. Because I was the only one with any clue how to assemble them, I was named chief mechanic and driver. After the big event I took the thing home, and promptly bought a second one. ... I guess you can kinda see how this goes from here... Four years later, and I have fully restored the M02, making it a light-duty runner with the only modern addition of a 2.4Ghz receiver and an ESC. The rest is pure '90s goodness, including an original body set. The TT01 received a Lancia Delta Integrale body set, and a rally interior soon after. The TT01 is still with me, I race it in the Dutch Tamiya Cup wearing a Toyota GT86 body set (the beautiful Lancia is just too fragile for the track).. For the local indoor carpet track I have two cars. I started out running the TT, but soon upgraded to a TRF419, currently in Stock 17.5t trim to comply with local regulations. It's an absolute beast, precise as a scalpel and quick like a fox. The other car I bought to compete with my wife. She runs a Tamiya F1 mutt (F104 with an X1 rear pod and setup, and a TRF102 frontend on foam, and I found the 419 to be outgunned. So I went and got a TRF102. The TRF F1 is still fairly new to me, and I'm still working on setting it up. I run it on rubber instead of foam, which puts me at a huge handling disadvantage compared to her foam-shod car. The 102 has the upper hand in power though, she runs a silver can, and I run a 21.5t brushless in blinky. We also have two DT03 buggies, just to mess around with on the beach, and I'm currently painting up a CC01 Mitsubishi Pajero MTW.
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