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But... but... but... the car will be too fast


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#1 Bob Kurkowski

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 07:49 AM

There has been numerous discussions about putting a good, fast, and rebuildable motor in cars and as some would say "overpowering them."

 

Most times when this topic is brought up it is met with cries and whines that the cars will be undriveable and that they will get destroyed in horrendous high-speed crashes however most of the time these same whines and cries come from people who have no experience at actually trying this exercise.

 

On a recent trip to Mark's Model World in Canton, OH, I was met with a very nice surprise. Mark handed me a car that he assembled using the latest JK flexi chassis shod with a closed cockpit sports car body with a off-the-wall Pro Slot Group 12 motor that he will sell you ready to race for $90 and told me go out and run it.

 

As I walked over to the track Mark was laughing at the smile I had on my face because I knew this was going to be a good car because it is essentially a ISRA A-Production car.

 

I took the first couple of laps kind of easy to get a feel for the car but I was quickly able to bring it up to speed and settle into a very stable driving mode with it. The car was very fast down both straights but it handles great and it had a very secure feeling in the turns with great driver feedback however it wasn't so bolted that if you missed your mark the car would not de-slot. Overall I was very impressed, this car is a car you have to drive even on a punched King but it's faster then a GTP and darn near as fast as a Group F. Another highlight of this car is that this is a ISRA style car that is exactly how ISRA runs them except for a gear change and maybe some softer tires so this car has the capability to run on any type of track both a punch bowl or a flattrack. As for the 'horrendous crash crowd,' this car is as fast or a tick faster then a GTP car and GTPs can survive crashes quite well so tearing up this car should not be anymore of a concern then what is currently being raced.

 

Now the real test, a friend of mine who has limited experience was standing next to me and he about shi.. himself when I handed him the controller and said, "Here, see what you think." He took the first few laps quite slow but with every lap he picked up the pace and he remarked at how fast the car was and how well the car handled and then he said he liked it so much he would be very interested in buying and racing something like this car.

 

Despite what has been said in the past here and all of the false information that swirls around the web there are good alternatives out there that need to be explored and this car is proof that different is better.

 

Now if I can only get Mark to put a Group 20 in a GTP.

 

Bob K.


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#2 Racer36

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 08:49 AM

Are you sure on the 90 dollar price for a RTR? Using the PS sealed 12 motor Mark will use 90 bucks worth of parts at list. I would think he would want a few bucks for his time.


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#3 Bob Kurkowski

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 08:59 AM

Dennis,

 

Positive on the pricing, the car came straight out of showcase. The price label was on the car when I ran it.

 

The motor in this car was NOT burdened by a seal so the racer has the option to rebuild it down the road which is another huge plus.

 

Nice thing about this car also is that it was set-up by Mark personally and it could be raced with confidence as is. Mark offers many good RTR's that are often purchased and raced with very good results the same day.

 

Bob K.



#4 Pablo

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 10:25 AM

Totally concur with the idea. Let the cars and lap times determine how much motor a car can use. It's a self-limiting factor.
 
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#5 Benno - SAC

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 11:19 AM

Bob,
 
I totally agree with you except in one point: the chassis-body-motor concept you describe is not overpowered.

We are racing two classes similar to what you describe here in West Germany. But you can only win with a fast motor. Racers who are not able to buy or build a fast motor don't have a chance.

But the cars are great to drive because of the fantastic handling and therefore bring a lot of fun.
 
In the '90s we raced classes like flexis with DTM bodys and G12 motors. Or Eurosport chassis (Alligator) with Group C bodies like the Mercedes C10 (with the single spoiler you had to attach to the back, but without any wings) and open motors (most used strap G27). Theses classes were overpowered, but therefore much harder to drive.
I like those overpowered classes, but many racers were not really able to handle these cars and therefore left.
 
But as you said, the cars you are speaking of are a lot of fun to drive. :dance3:


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#6 kvanpelt

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 11:43 AM

This is exactly the thing I find so irritating about slot racing, someone always has a better idea of how to change things to make it better. Print up a set of rules and get a group of guys and go race. You just might have come up with the next big thing... or not!
 
I probably agree with you in theory, Bob, but the participation numbers just don't agree with what is being supported at the track. A large percentage don't want the motor hassle. I wish it were different, but...
 
Honestly, I think the last thing we need is another too-fast, intimidating class for any new guys to get started with. Our friend Rob Voska and I have had many of these discussions about our GLISRA racing. Cars are all way too fast for the average guy sticking his head in the door to see what we are up to. Most need to start with an FCR, Womp, or a slow flexi. I personally race Retro only a couple times a year, and from what I see half the field does not need a faster motor, IMHO.


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#7 Samiam

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 11:45 AM

...."it is essentially a ISRA A-Production car."


So this type of car is already a readily-available option for any racer who wants to race such a car. Gp-12 flexi is nothing new. 
 
What is truly unique is that Mark is building a race ready car for the cost of parts. Kennyn(RIP) would do the same thing at Slots-A-Lot.    
 
As far as "overpowered race cars," there is Eurosport where a choke is needed to calm the motor.
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#8 Justin A. Porter

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 12:23 PM

Here's my thinking, and this is without wearing either my track owner or series director caps. 

This is not a new concept. As you pointed out, Bob, it's effectively ISRA A-Production. For that matter, GT12, which uses more sophisticated and more durable chassis also already exists. 
 
If racers were clamoring to race either of the existing classes, they would either have a larger presence in weekly racing reports or would have already arranged themselves into a touring series. This has not happened. Building a car is relatively easy. Promoting racing in such a fashion as to encourage other people to build a car is an entirely different matter. 

Also, as a note Sam, we do the same at Haven where we build RTR GT1 or GTP cars for customers at a flat price that includes all parts and a fixed bench fee. It's a really successful program because it gives racers who are ready to move from their starter set cars an easy avenue to competitive equipment upon which someone else has already performed all of the R&D.


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#9 Pablo

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 01:06 PM

A large percentage don't want the motor hassle. I wish it were different, but...

 
But the frontrunners don't seem to complain about buying 50 rear view mirror motors from China and spending hundreds of $ and hours in analyzing tools, cherry picking the best ones. Do they?


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#10 MSwiss

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 01:29 PM

Pablo,

The above is still way, way cheaper than buying, or building, 25 take-apart motors.
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#11 Ramcatlarry

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 01:36 PM

But the front runners don't seem to complain about buying 50 rear view mirror motors from China and spending hundreds of $ and hours in analyzing tools, cherry picking the best ones. Do they?

 

Fake news. They buy from the vendor or slot shop of choice. All motors sourced direct from China, bypassing the importer, are counterfeit and would need to be engraved properly.


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#12 Dave Crevie

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 01:49 PM

KVP hit on what is the most common reason new racers don't stay in slot racing. There is no standard path of progression for someone who first walks in the door, to the more advanced classes. I sympathize with the track owners who want to sell the high dollar products, that's where the profit is. But you have to hook them on the hobby first. So a ground level class, well supported with regularly scheduled races, is what is needed.
 
Before I got back into slot racing, I previously raced during the late '80s and early '90s. We ran Group 12 motors in what today we would consider horrendous chassis. We never considered those cars overpowered. We learned to drive them. I ran a lot of Eurosport classes, which were my favorite class. We didn't have chokes or electronic controllers. We matched motors to the track, and resistor controllers to the motors. We didn't learn all that overnight. We started with GP-10, and worked our way up to the faster classes.
 
When I returned to slot racing after about a fifteen-year hiatus, what drew me in was a series Jerry Kulich was sponsoring, called the Falcon series. There were three Falcon-motored classes, but he also had a couple of C-can powered classes using Eurosport type chassis. There was a path from the slower Falcon cars to something more advanced. Except for at a few local tracks, I don't really see that anymore. Retro is the closest, but that is hardly an entry level series. The track owners need to develop a low power, stamped steel class that has cheap RTR cars, and with electronic controllers are not allowed.

 

That is where the Wednesday evening group started at Chicagoland. And look where it has gone.


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#13 Bill from NH

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 02:32 PM

Back in the early 2000s when we raced CASRA, I ran A-Production because it was their slowest class. I didn't have 25 motors either. I built two for each race, one for racing, the second for practice, which also was my back-up. In those days, we ran X12 arms in JRL, too. 


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How old should a highway be before you tell it, that it has been adopted?


#14 MSwiss

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 02:52 PM

And I'm guessing you weren't racing on a Gerding King, and didn't feel the need to have to win, every time.


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#15 Bill from NH

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 08:55 PM

Winning is for bragging rights until the next race. :laugh2:  The only King track I recall CASRA running on was Lou Pirro's Hasse Nilsson in Schenectady, NY. Rhode Island had a mirrored King, but CASRA didn't run in RI. I don't believe Gerding had started the series he built.


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How old should a highway be before you tell it, that it has been adopted?


#16 MSwiss

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 09:14 PM

Yes, the point is the guys with the 50 motors don't need 50 motors to be on top.

 

They need about 10.

 

The other 40 were cheap chances they would find a magic one, and I'm guessing they're not using the rent money to take those chances.

 

The built-motor guys are doing the same thing, but with way more expensive armatures, and possibly magnets.

 

Spending what they can afford to give themselves the best chance possible to win.

 

Flat and tricky tracks help negate that, but racers really seem to prefer fast, easy tracks.


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#17 Phil Hackett

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 09:52 PM

Flat and tricky tracks help negate that, but racers really seem to prefer fast, easy tracks.

 
My God! I said this in a recent post and was heavily criticized for suggesting the Retro series concentrate on twisty tracks to "even" the motor performance.
 
Nice to see we agree that twisty tracks might be the big answer to the perpetual problem of motor "unfairness."
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#18 MSwiss

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 10:28 PM

Of course, but my last sentence is the key.

Guys like fast and easy, especially for big races.

The out-of-towner always feels he's behind the eight ball when going up against a tough local, on something like a flat track.
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#19 gotboostedvr6

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 10:32 PM

Mike,

How many races can racer expect a top preforming RH to last?
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#20 MSwiss

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Posted 26 February 2018 - 10:58 PM

It all depends on the power.

IIRC, Noose talks about four-five races.

In my Wednesday night GTP, on 12.2v, my top guy has said 20+.

We race 2 minute heats, and he usually only takes four-five warm-up laps.


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#21 John Streisguth

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Posted 27 February 2018 - 02:39 AM

Are you sure on the 90 dollar price for a RTR? Using the PS sealed 12 motor Mark will use 90 bucks worth of parts at list . I would think he would want a few bucks for his time.


He's probably using one of those $38 specials Pro Slot recently came out with. I have one of them... great bang for the buck, but not as fast as even a PS4002/X12 combo. Which is not as fast as a good C-can-based 12 (which is what I assume you're referring to).
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#22 The Number of

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Posted 27 February 2018 - 07:51 AM

He's probably using one of those $38 specials Pro Slot recently came out with.


Correct.
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#23 old & gray

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Posted 27 February 2018 - 08:36 AM

The out-of-towner always feels he's behind the eight ball when going up against a tough local on something like a flat track.

 
Would having a major race at Elmsford fall into that description of a big race on a flat track?
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#24 Bill from NH

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Posted 27 February 2018 - 11:26 AM

I ran that track once at the original Elmsford location on Sawmill Rd. I know they held big races, but I wouldn't have considered it a flat track. :)


Bill Fernald
 

How old should a highway be before you tell it, that it has been adopted?


#25 MSwiss

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Posted 27 February 2018 - 12:05 PM

Would having a major race at Elmsford fall into that description of a big race on a flat track?


Yes.
 
I raced there twice.
 
At the 84 Worlds, and at a once-a-year bucks race.
 
It was a challenge, especially when there were marshals in place.
 
It wasn't just the track. It was some of the other things, like the unique lane colors, and other stuff.
 
At the Worlds, in the warm-up race a few days before, I picked to get the tough, tight drivers turn out of the way early.
 
After four heats, I was second behind Laster, and I remember thinking to myself, "I'm done with brown (or gray, or whatever it was called), I'm going after Laster."
 
Except while I hooked up to the next lane, everyone else was acting like the race was over... well, because...the race was over.
 
"We don't run eight heats for warm-ups". LOL.
 
At the race, eight or nine years later, the track had been retopped or resurfaced.
 
Hasse routed that tight drivers turn in the shape of parabolic nose cone on an Estes model rocket.
 
Dick P came out every time in that turn, for the whole five minutes in the G7 Main... and still finished ahead of me. LOL.
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