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Motor consistency


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#1 havlicek

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 07:42 AM

I can take my time, wind and build ten motors, be as careful as I can doing them all the same, use the same basic components, do the same assembly... and wind up with noticeable variations (on the power supply anyway) between them.

 

I'd just like to inject a little dispassionate reality into the whole question around these things. Now, take that same premise, but apply it to a batch of maybe (?) a hundred thousand or so motors mass-produced to meet a low price point, and I find it shocking that the variations aren't huge!

 

Actually, the fact that some will buy a whole bunch of the "FK" Chinese motors to find one or two cherries only underscores how consistent (generally-speaking) the motors are.  

 

-john 


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#2 slotcarone

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 08:17 AM

Totally agree, John. I posted basically the same thought a few days ago. It was ignored!


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#3 Samiam

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 08:28 AM

John,

 

I need 10,000 arms to fit mini cans. I want them all to be exactly alike. OH... and they have to retail for $30. Motors will be $50. When can I have these?

 

PS: If any arms meter up really nice, above the average, please put them aside. You have my address.


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#4 havlicek

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 08:42 AM

Hi Sam...

 

While I get that you're being humorous ;) , metering doesn't tell you all that much. Swiss and others have made the point that you really can't tell for sure until the motor is in a car and the car is on the track. Even then, the chassis and how the car is set up are probably at least as important as the motor itself. I  do a lot of the same type motors, so I have an idea of how they should perform, and I still get surprises all the time.

 

-john


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#5 DOCinCocoa

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 08:56 AM

Awesome, John. Very well said.


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#6 Tex

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 10:05 AM

Very good insight... thanks.


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#7 Noose

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 10:09 AM

Reproducability and repeatablity are two things that are tough enough for major manufacturers of anything to obtain. 

 

My bet, just based on my own observations, is that 80% of the items used in slot racing are not consistently made the "exact same."

 

I do not care if it's bodies, guides, tires, or axles. Not even piano wire.


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#8 Matt Sheldon

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 10:13 AM

Totally agree, John. I posted basically the same thought a few days ago. It was ignored!

 

Mike,

 

You cannot talk that voodoo magic common sense around here.


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Matt Sheldon

#9 Cheater

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 10:34 AM

John, please don't muddy the motor "discussion" with facts...


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#10 Steve Okeefe

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 11:46 AM

John,

 

Thank you for pointing out the obvious, unpopular as it may be in some circles.

 

Some years ago at my local raceway (now defunct) it was very common to hear racers complain endlessly about "Chinese junk" motors, and how "you had to buy 10 just to get one that runs well".  No doubt this happened at most other active raceways, too.

 

When I suggested that we could all go back to building our own motors, whether from scratch (as in winding our own arms) or from over-the-counter parts, all I would get was the old argument about "leveling the playing field", and the bugaboo of "motor wars".

 

In response I would suggest that there is no such thing as a level playing field when it comes to parts, and in particular to motors.  Some will always work better than others as they themselves have complained about.

 

From there I would go on to the logical conclusion and say that if we were going to maintain a level playing field we should eliminate both the slow AND the fast motors and use only the middle ones that run the same as each other...  You can easily imagine where that argument got me.

 

But, I digress.  It is refreshing to hear someone else make the argument based on the facts. :good:


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#11 John Streisguth

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 12:00 PM

The more restricted the cars are, the more "the little things" make a difference.  Each one of those little things by itself will not win races, but add them all up and you have the "unfair advantage".  Most real car racing series are like that now.  


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#12 Tim Wilkins

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 12:31 PM

John is certainly an expert in motor building and I agree with what he is saying regarding motor performance consistency. However, the main concern of this recent motor consistency discussion, was consistency in the way the Retro Hawk motors are made which in turn, can certainly affect motor consistency performance. I'll just quote what Bryan Warmack wrote and leave it at that.

 

    A)       Four different can markings:

                           1.    No markings

                           2.    MADE IN CHINA in black ink

                           3.    R  MADE IN CHINA  etched

                           4.    and the new 7R7R7R

              B)        Several different balancing procedures

              C)        Different magnetic cogging?

              D)        Different shafts

              E)        Different brushes

              F)        and now perhaps different wire, windings, and timing...


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#13 Cheater

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 12:40 PM

Tim,

 

How about we quote from later in Bryan's same post, just to be fair and accurate?

 

I have torn two of the new ones [marked 7R] apart and found them to be exactly the same as the old ones (65 turns of .0105" wire and the same timing). Track performance has been mixed...

 

The last sentence is the crux of the matter and is what is being investigated.


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#14 Kim Lander

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 12:42 PM

Well said, my friend.

 

Most racers nowadays don't know how or don't want to learn to build a motor, takes too much time they say.

 

Just watch the old timers that win consistantly. Yes, they can build a motor and yes, they can build a chassis, but the  things that 98% of them have are the driving and setup skills. Wish I still had a place to race, play, practice, but I do not. So when I do get to a track for a race I just buy the motor that has been designated for the race and have fun and usually come in around fourth or fifth below the old timers like me or some of the new guys that I think were born with a controller in their hand, but hey... we had fun, at least I do.

 

As we used to say, keep your thumb down and make laps.


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#15 Dan Ebert

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 12:55 PM

Anyone involved in assembly, machining and manufacturing would understand all the variables that come into play just on this little motor. Even within tolerance, wire thickness, insulation thickness,  stack dimension, etc., etc., all will come into play. The lucky soul that gets the motor with best of all worlds within the given specs hits the lottery. It will happen, folks, no matter who is making or building these. You get the thick wire with minimum insulation on the short stack. Wound evenly and balanced right on, with a straight shaft that may be been from a lot of slightly harder material. All of this comes into play even when all tolerances are maintained. 

 

So when are we going to realize this is just the nature of the beast and accept this fact. Until human error is eliminated and manufacturing processes are perfect we will not see equally performing motors. This is as close as it gets for a 13 or 50 dollar motor. No way around  it.

 

So go race and stop bitching about 13 dollar motors. 


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#16 olescratch

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 12:57 PM

There will never be what is called an "equal" race! Someone will always have an upper hand. Even in the case of building your own motors, as stated by Mr. H., there will be differences. These differences are what determines the race, motors, bodies, track skills, etc.

 

To even expect that a bunch of mass-produced anythings will be the same is a sign of not being able to deal with the "real"!!


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John Stewart

#17 airhead

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 12:59 PM

I don't care if I win anything or not, racing slot cars is fun, just like it was in the '60s.

 

Besides, in a race when I wreck someone will put my car back on the track for me.


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#18 olescratch

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 01:02 PM

Anyone involved in assembly, machining and manufacturing would understand all the variables that come into play just on this little motor. Even within tolerance, wire thickness, insulation thickness,  stack dimension, etc., etc., all will come into play. The lucky soul that gets the motor with best of all worlds within the given specs hits the lottery. It will happen, folks, no matter who is making or building these. You get the thick wire with minimum insulation on the short stack. Wound evenly and balanced right on, with a straight shaft that may be been from a lot of slightly harder material. All of this comes into play even when all tolerances are maintained.

 
If you want a very good example of this, take a look at what's going on in much larger fields of production as the auto and let's not forget smartphone industries! The words equal, similar, etc,. aren't even taken to mean the same!!


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#19 Tim Wilkins

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 01:07 PM

I wish I lived closer to you, Billy. I'd put your car back on the track every time. :)


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#20 Noose

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 01:08 PM

The magic word is "tolerances" here, folks. No specification is written +/- ZERO. Thus, allowed variation is built right in, as Dan noted.
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#21 Half Fast

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 01:23 PM

Please don't let this thread devolve into the clusterfrack like the last one :dash2: . John H (and others) has said all that can be said on this issue!
 
Cheers, I think. :)
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#22 Phil Hackett

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 01:48 PM

Absolute consistency is impossible. It wasn't possible with hand-built and tested motors and isn't with motors made thousands per day.
 
Some might add that the motors vary from batch to batch... well, duh, they do. Want to fix that? It would involve getting a better design where the variables have been dealt with and a huge order for the  motors (say 100,000+ pieces).
 
OK... so who has the money to solve the problem? Time to put up or be quiet.
 
Other hobbies had the right idea where early on they standardized on a motor and didn't travel down the path slot cars have. IMHO, we should have stopped at C-can motors. Straps, cut-down C-cans, Peanut motors, and these new not-designed-for-slot-car motors have not helped one bit.

 

One wonders where we might be if the C-can was still the standard. I think we'd be much better off.


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#23 Phil Hackett

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 01:56 PM

Another post, sorry but it's slightly different subject then the previous post.

 

In my long racing career I had many instances where I had built motors that weren't competitive. I would just put them back into a drawer and turn my attention to the good ones. Every once in a while I might need a mule for testing, breaking-in tires, practice and I'd pull one of these motors out. Much to my surprise they'd turned into monsters while dwelling in the dark drawer. Not only were they fast but they would somehow last longer than the motors that were initially quick.

 

So much for consistency. 


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#24 MSwiss

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 02:19 PM

Phil,

 

Your "better off with C-cans" comment??

It's a bit odd/non-informed.

C-cans are still around, but yet racers flock to "not designed for slot racing," sealed motor, racing classes.


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#25 wbugenis

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Posted 03 November 2016 - 03:07 PM

When I read the words "racers flock," I can't help thinking of other creatures who "flock," not noted for making thoughtful, independent decisions. Hence the need for a shepherd to keep them out of trouble.


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