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Coating Retro fonts - pros? cons?


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#1 Tex

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 06:04 PM

I've been coating my fronts with clear fingernail polish in attempt to get them to last longer. I know it changes the grip level which, in turn, could change the overall balance. Personally, I haven't seen any detrimental affect by doing so. But I'm thinking of trying CA as a coating(?). Thoughts? Also, does either coating(fingernail polish or CA) cause any shrinkage of the overall diameter after the coating dries? I don't want to true them down and then have them end up undersized(illegal) due to possible shrinkage. Thanks in advance for any and all comments.


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#2 Pablo

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 06:18 PM

Clear nail polish doesn't cause shrinkage. Matter of fact it increases the OD each time you apply a thin coat.

 

CA I can't speak for, never used it. Good question, Tex.


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#3 Bill from NH

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 06:44 PM

I bought bottles of black & clear fingernail polish. I use them until the bottles run out. I know people who use CA glue without it causing problems. I don't think it matters. Polyurethane wood finishes would probably work too. You are truing your fronts after coating?


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#4 Dominator

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 07:15 PM

If you use nail polish be sure to re-true your tires. Depending on the track you might see a benefit. I coated my fronts when I first started Retro about 7 or 8 years ago but slowly moved away from it as the cars tracked much better with the foam rubber.

If you find the car is rolling out on flatter turns try using a smaller hub (like the standard JK's). Higher speed tracks use a larger hub (like the Samson or ARP).
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#5 Tex

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 07:25 PM

You are truing your fronts after coating?

 

Yes, both before & after.... before to get them to the size I want & after to smooth off any irregularities in the coating.


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#6 slotcarone

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 08:36 PM

I have used CA in the past. I just squeeze a 4 inch line of it on the block and roll the tires through it. Soaks in after a while. Stops the tire from biting if there is glue on the track.


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#7 Tex

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 08:55 PM

.... but slowly moved away from it as the cars tracked much better with the foam rubber.

 

Ya know, as mentioned, I've been coating my fronts mainly to be able to run them longer.... i.e. I'm a cheapo. But as Dominic points out, I could be doing so to the detriment of handling. I think I'll forego coating the fronts for a while and see how it goes.


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#8 Brinkley47

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 08:57 PM

I am also a cheapo. I would not coat retro fronts. If they get too small I remove the rubber and mount new rubber. They are like new again!
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#9 Tex

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 10:17 PM

I am also a cheapo. I would not coat retro fronts. If they get too small I remove the rubber and mount new rubber. They are like new again!

 

Can you get donuts in the proper size(s) for retro fronts? Or do you modify "regular" donuts?


Richard L. Hofer

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#10 Brinkley47

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 10:21 PM

I take old Rears that are too small and turn them into fronts by pulling the rubber off.
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#11 Ramcatlarry

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Posted 23 July 2017 - 10:36 PM

One source:  JK Product - 'front tire donuts'

 

I coat tires often for both foam and 1/32 plastic car rubber.  I prefer the workability of the nail polish and re-coat ability of polish over CA.   The non-grip ability is enhanced if you should ever bend an axle.


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#12 TG Racing

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 09:18 AM

I did better last season w/ regular non bearing fronts for Can.Am.  I still like Buds fronts for F1.


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#13 SlowBeas

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 12:38 PM

I've never tried CA -- at least, not yet.

 

I have, however, tried clear fingernail polish that I stole....I mean "leveraged" from my wife's collection. While it hardens the surface, especially if you're using old, narrowed rear tires, the polish tends to crack after a race or two. It looks pretty miserable -- but still works effectively.


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#14 JimF

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 01:26 PM

IMO - IME - $0.01 worth.................

 

I use CA almost all the time. It seals the surface of the fronts without really putting a "layer" on them. I also find that hardening the fronts is not necessarily better all the time. As an example, my current best F-1 (mind - technical flat tracks) Is at it's best with a non coated and wider (.325) front than it is with a narrow (.250) front either coated or non. The car is more stable on turn exit with the wider fronts.

 

YMPWV..............


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#15 raisin27

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 02:15 PM

We used CA glue on the sponge rubber fronts that we were required to run on the scale class cars when we raced in Europe back in 1987. We would saturate the foam and let it harden overnight then true them. It made a big difference in the speed of the cars on the straightaways compared to the very soft foam we were dealing with.


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#16 Gator Bob

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 02:15 PM

FWIW:

 

When racing .... I only coated front tires on cars with locked fronts.

Right front only when running oval, let the right front slip as the left front sets the speed of both.


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#17 Samiam

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Posted 24 July 2017 - 05:01 PM

Spray some flat black paint onto a hard surface, then roll clean fronts through it. Roll on clean cardboard to even out or remove excess. I only did this on recycled rears. All the fronts I bought were made with proper rubber and I never felt it was necessary to coat them.

 

You should clean the fronts between heats if they pick up a lot of glue.


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#18 Mark Wampler

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Posted 25 July 2017 - 01:51 PM

I’ve been using CA for a long time.  I like to start off with at least Wonder Rubber and trim down a few thou under .075 and then build it back up with CA.  I true the tire after the CA application  on the Hudy, BUT I use a dremel with a sanding drum, spin it the opposite direction until I can feel the vibration smooth out on the tire.  I don’t like super hard fronts.  You need some give to help smooth out vibration.  If the tire wears down past .075,  just build it back up again.  If your rubber is too soft to start with, then the CA can crack and chunk out.  Bigger hubs if possible for fronts.  Good luck Richard ! :D


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#19 WildMan1101

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Posted 26 July 2017 - 04:09 PM

Richard, Ya gotta show up to race retro before you can wear out the fronts............ LOL


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#20 Greg VanPeenen

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Posted 26 July 2017 - 05:39 PM

Richard,

 

I never coat front tires, EVER.

 

Use harder foam like JK firm on most tracks. Use Softer fronts on the flat tracks or bumpy tracks as the soft rubber will handle the bumps better. Use threaded front axles that makes it very easy to change front tires. Carry spares already trued to the correct size and just change them when they get to small. With the ease of changing fronts with threaded front axles no need to ever coat fronts anymore.

 

We also never eeeeeever use ball bearing fronts. We have tried them all and no matter how good a ball bearing you use they wobble. Even if you use GRW Ball Bearings on both sides. We tested fronts several Sano races ago and went faster with the standard JK firm fronts.

 

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#21 Mark Wampler

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Posted 27 July 2017 - 03:48 PM

Yeah, those who are so vehement against coating fronts would probably make a mess of it if they tried.  There's lots of racers who like BB fronts and there's a lot of care and engineering that go into a BB front tire.   I've also run live spin front axles on BB's too.  


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#22 MSwiss

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Posted 27 July 2017 - 03:58 PM

Yeah, those who are so vehement against coating fronts would probably make a mess of it if they tried.

What's the connection?

 

If they disagree with your opinion, that must mean they are technically incompetent?

 

What a rude comment.


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#23 Mark Wampler

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Posted 27 July 2017 - 04:06 PM

Mike, its okay to state your opinion, but by putting down other's opinions, that makes someone the ultimate expert in their own minds, but not in reality.  Every track is different and results in testing will always be different..  The deal with putting down BB fronts is totally uncalled for. 

 

I would add to the above the elevation of a particular manufacturer  and the putting down of another should always draw a red flag.  I use JK hubs all the time for fronts.  Whether cut down from rear tires or re-mount rubber on existing fronts.  They're a quality product, B U T,  specifically putting down GRW and by association every other BB front manufacturer should be taken with a grain of salt. 


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#24 MSwiss

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Posted 27 July 2017 - 04:13 PM

I missed where GVP did anything other than state his opinion, which was based on testing.

Please explain your rationale on how they "would probably make a mess of it if they tried."?

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#25 Mark Wampler

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Posted 27 July 2017 - 04:21 PM

What said is said Mike.  I added a further comment to my last post.


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