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rc bashing with CubbyAnd this week the wheel of death lands on… you guessed it, one of my favorites, ROAR! Actually this week I’m not flipping out on them at all, but I do want to talk about their press release from last week. ROAR put out a statement in regards to the high-zoot 2.4″ wheels that are all the rage 10th scale buggies right now. They very nicely explained how the 2.4″ wheels (and tires) have not been approved, therefore nobody should expect them to be legal at ROAR sanctioned events in 2014. The PR was well done and said what needed to said without making them sound evil or out of touch. Well done ROAR (have I ever said that before???).

On the other hand… I’ve seen where there are a bunch of “racers” out there melting down about it, which I simply can not understand. How is it so hard for one to wrap their head around the fact that tires/wheels that have never been approved are not legal for racing? Pretty simple stuff here no doubt, but a certain group of “hardcore” racers think just because they’ve bought a bunch of the 2.4s that they should instantly be legal for any event they see fit. Some of you wacky racers out there need to get grip…

And… some of you “hardcore types” should consider quitting your cheating. A couple weeks ago at a big west coat rc event the organizer decided to do some tech inspections on the “stock” and “super stock” classes and found numerous cheaters at his event. We’ve even seen people at really laid back events cheating by various means. How pathetic is that, cheating at racing toy cars? There is no honor in a win acquired by cheating, and it will be something that the perpetrator will think about over, and over, and over again with shame…

On a different note… years and years ago I had a little accident while racing motocross that was a career ender. After the accident promises were made to my family never to ride again. They (my family) were put through an awful lot during my injury, so I made the promises and pretty much stayed away from bikes after that. Well, until about 2 months ago…

If you ride you know that it is an itch that simply can not be scratched without riding again. I pretty much didn’t ride for close to a decade and a half so the itch simply got too strong and I broke down and bought a new bike. I’ve been riding every week since then, and quite honestly, it has done wonders for my mental state. Riding helps keep me on an even keel, since I’ve been riding I no longer feel like killing everyone I see.

But… I got a real eye opener today (Sunday as I write this). As I neared my local riding spot I started seeing state troopers, an ambulance, and a fire truck. Three riders had been involved in an accident, two of which required helicopter flights, with the other a ride in the ambulance. I don’t know who was involved, or how it happened, but any which way, I forgot that even going out for a casual trial ride can be fatally dangerous.

So what’s my point? I know a whole lot of you do rc plus ride/drive/race the full scale deal too, my point is it’s easy to become too relaxed and forget about the dangers of riding/racing. I know I rode a whole lot more cautiously today after seeing those LifeFlight helicopters, I hope each and every one of you make it a point to have fun and go big, but do it in the safest way possible.

That’s it for this week ya lunatics, stay safe out there and support your local hobby shops and bash spots.

YOUR Cub Reporter

Cubby with TP199 Truck at TORCThe other day I was on the phone complaining about the high prices of dry cleaning to Brian. I told him how every towel roughly costs $3 a piece to have cleaned and how that was just getting to be outrageous (which it is)! He commented on how he had never heard of “dry clean only towels” before and that if they did exist, I had to be out of my mind to actual own them. I had never heard of towels that didn’t need to be dry cleaned, well, except for those nasty pieces of cloth they call towels at hotels, and couldn’t believe he didn’t use dry clean only towels himself. Anyways, I’ve since been appointed a “towel snob” and now you know the story behind this week’s title.

Oh ya, and how about some rc? I don’t think so, why not go old school and talk moto first?

I’m certain you either attended in person or watched the coverage of the AMA Motocross National over the weekend. Yes, Jeremey Martin is killing it, the Dunge is showing his age, but most importantly, did you see all the different lines in the track at Spring Creek? Every corner had multiple lines, some just 2, other a half dozen, either way, all those lines are something us rc’ers can only dream about. Well, unless you’ve only ever raced rc and think one line tracks are the norm and the way things should be, and if that is the case, I feel very sorry for you. I can only hope that somewhere, someday, somehow, rc track “designers” get their act together and start doing what it takes to develop multiple lines, the racing for all involved is sooooo much better.

Speaking of rc… all the “big” new product announcements for the Christmas buying season are just around the corner. I am of course sworn to secrecy, but the X-Mas 2014 rc season has some pretty cool stuff ahead. I am chomping at the bit to say more, but if I do it means getting blackballed on further cool stuff, and I am not going to let that happen.

For even more teasing… did ya know BSRC is ten years old? As unbelievable as that might seem, BigSquidRC has somehow managed to keep the doors open for a decade. And lets face it, you know how we are, we are gonna have to celebrate! And just how does BSRC celebrate a decade of demolition? Well, by giving away some cool stuff to our way super dope readers, plus by having a seriously cool party. More info coming on these soon ya’ll……

And yes, even more teasing… our next shootout is well under way and we hope to finish it up next weekend. What shootout might that be? Our Gasoline Monster Truck Shootout of course. This is just a two truck shootout between the HPI Savage Octane and the Losi LST XXL-2, but for all you hardcore bashers it should be right down your alley. We are aiming for it to hit our main page in about 2-3 weeks.

But what about this week’s review? Oh yes, this weeks review is a good one featuring the Losi Mini 8IGHT-T Truggy. The Mini 8IGHT-T might be small but it packs big power and the dastardly AVC that the old timers love to hate. Find out in just a few days how horrifically we treated the truck, and how long, or even if, it survived.

That’s all I got for ya this week, support your local hobby shops and bash spots when ya can.

YOUR Cub Reporter

Cubby iHobby Truck Give awayIt amazes me how when every new RTR is announced there are a bunch of old school rc zealots that pop out of the woodwork and go into full idiot mode proclaiming its not worth buying unless it is a kit. Ok, so I understand that some people “like” kits, but to go into a full Chernobyl meltdown after each RTR is announced is a bit much, even by Cubby standards.

Why are the “kit fanboyz” so fanatical? I am certainly no psychologist, so my guess is whatever they may be lacking in life they attempt to make up for by being an “elitist” in the field of rc. They chastise people who don’t share their hatred of RTRs, claim over and over again that RTRs are assembled by blind paraplegics, and state that if you are driving an RTR you are a noob. And after doing so, somehow, someway, it makes them feel “better”.

How is the assembly quality of most RTRs these days? Generally they are much better than RTRs from a decade ago. We go over our review units with a fine tooth comb, and while we do still find a problem here or there, generally RTRs are assembled as good, if not better, than we would have assembled them. The people overseas that are putting these cars/trucks/buggies together do it 40+ hours a week, meaning they are experts at what they are doing. In comparison, an average hobbyist might only assemble one kit every few months. In fact, in the field I’ve seen more poorly built kits than poorly built RTRs over the last couple of years. It seems that while certain hobbyists “want” to build their own rigs, they don’t take the proper time (or read the manual closely enough) to make sure it ends up being built correctly.

If you are driving an RTR does that make you a noob? I’ve personally witnessed pretty much every single big name in our hobby driving a RTR, so that certainly isn’t the case. These big names are no different than the BSRC staff, or the majority of our readers, and they have no problem driving an RTR because it saves them time. It seems that while some of the elitist kit fanboyz swear they would never touch an RTR, the big names they worship have no problem doing so.

And… to all those wanna-be elitists that think every new car announced needs to be available in kit form only- you’ve probably never seen the sales numbers, but I have, and most kits just don’t sell very well. If every new car were banished to being a kit, there would be a whole lot of companies going out of business.

Yes, sure, everyone in the hobby should assemble a kit (or two, or ten) to get a better understanding of the inner workings of an rc car, but there is absolutely nothing wrong with manufacturers putting out mostly RTRs, nor anything wrong with the people that buy them. The advent of the RTR has helped keep our hobby from dying off, and helped finance many of the uber kits that the so called “elitists” like to build.

That’s it for this week ya bunch of rc snobs, support your local hobby shops, bash spots, and ready-to-runs when ya can.

YOUR Cub Reporter

FPV RC CubbyTo mix things up a little this week I’ve decided to make THE Cub Report about some of my favorite hobby shops. I travel a lot for my “work”, so each year I am lucky enough to hit dozens of shops coast to coast. After all my traveling these are my top 3 hobby shops, the ones that if you are a gnarcore hobbyist you have to hit before you die.

3. A Main Hobbies, Chico California - While A Main is known primarily for their on-line sales, their brick and mortar is no joke. Their store isn’t the largest, but with their huge warehouse only about a mile away, it has to be considered one of the best stocked in the country. Want the latest Schumacher? No problem. Need to new Mugen? No problem. Quite simply they have all the stuff in stock that you wished your LHS carried. Also adding to the allure are their top notch tracks and the ability to get all the latest SoCal gossip from the guys working the counters. If you are in SoCal and want to get a real taste of rc, hit up the A Main shop.

2. Slot and Wing Hobbies, Champaign Illinois - Ok, so while A Main has every piece of uber new gear you could possibly want, Slot and Wing has a mind blowing amount of classic products. Slot and Wing, located just a few miles from the behemoths of Hobbico and Horizon, have been buying up “scratch and dent” items for years, thus making for an incredibly diverse product selection. Walking down an isle at Slot and Wing is like walking down memory lane (their classic body selection is particularly impressive). While many local hobby shops have a few leftover parts for older models, what makes Slot and Wing so special is the shear volume of older parts they carry. If you are into a walk down memory lane, or new to the hobby and want a real taste of what the hobby used to be like, plan a pilgrimage to Slot and Wing, some of the items they have on the pegs will blow your mind.

And now for my #1 favorite hobby shop here in the states…

RC Madness, Enfield Connecticut - Does RC Madness have the most gear? Nope, not by a long shot. Is it the most pristine shop you can walk into? No way. However, what makes them the number 1 shop in the country is how they treat their customers. Nearly every time I get to visit I am amazed at some of the things they do to help customers. The crew behind the counter are extremely well versed on the surface side of things, so you never get the deer in the headlights look when you ask for a strange part like you would at most hobby shops. Also, the shop owner Chris would do just about anything to make sure you leave with the parts you need. I’ve never known him to say “no” to even the most bizarre of requests. For example I would say something like, “Hey Chris, any way you can get me one of those #1 Phillips Hudy screwdrivers that only came in the XRay M18 kit?”, and his typical reply is never “No.”, it is more like “Give me a second and let me look.”. This inevitably ends up with him searching around the back, then walking to the counter with obscure part in hand and a price on his mind. In fact, I’ve seen him crack open brand new kits to get a customer the parts they needed. And when they don’t have the parts (or a suitable replacement) in stock, they have no issue going to great length to acquire them. To boil it down, the reason why RC Madness is #1 is because they go the extra mile (sometimes several extra miles) getting every customer exactly what they want. Oh and yes, if you are a hardcore hobbyist it is absolutely worth planning a dedicated trip just to visit Madness, they have multiple tracks to keep you busy once your spending spree is over.

That’s it for this week ya lunatics, support your local hobby shops and bash spots when ya can.

YOUR Cub Reporter

Cubby ROARHello all and welcome to THE Cub Report, the column everyone who is anyone reads to get a weekly dose of rc smack talk.

First up is no smack talk at all, it is good ole’ hard facts. We had more traffic on our website last Monday than any other day in the decade long history of BigSquidRC. Which is truly something, because we’ve had some pretty epic days before. In fact, we had over 30% more traffic last Monday than any other single day. The Axial Yeti review went up that day, plus we had some other decent posts that helped shoot our numbers through the roof. The big numbers prove that our dot com isn’t on a downward trend, it is still gaining momentum, something a whole lot of other sites can not say. So… mad props and huge thanks to all you readers out there for taking the time out of your day to give our little website a visit. It’s all of you that have taken BSRC from being just another little fish in the pond, all the way to being one of the biggest whales in the ocean.

Btw… getting our hands on the Yeti so early was really cool and we need to issue a big thanks to the Axial crew for the hook-up. However, we are not done yet with getting some of the hottest new products wayyyyy early. We have two other items that will be going up this fall that are going to be really, really big deals in the rc world. You guys know I am all about the tease, but I’m not kidding here, luckily we are big enough now days that we can get some big scoops. Both are still a few months out, but they will be legit “big deals”.

On a different note…

Boy, last weeks Cub Report sure got people mashing their keys (about ROAR and artificial stability control). Actually, it was another new record, a record for the most emails after a Cub Report. Those people that love to hate on stability control were out in force, typing out paragraph after paragraph on how that sort of thing is the devil and how I am the biggest idiot on the planet for endorsing its use. Strange, I haven’t run across many people inside the industry against it, nor have I run across many “normal” consumers that consider it something bad. It seems the people going full retard against it are local Joe Blow racers who think they might get beat by someone using it at their local “Paddy’s Cow Pie Trophy Race”. I can assure everyone this, no matter how much you may hate the thought of its existence, it isn’t going away, there are too many people on the design and manufacturing side of things ramping it up right now. Not only does it help make cars easier to drive, but mainly it helps SELL the cars, so don’t expect to see it going away anytime soon.

One last topic…

Ok, so the “gas revolution” is off to a very soft start. The HPI Octane has received a very lukewarm reception, and generally in the numbers we have access to, it looks like the public just isn’t gangbusters for that type of product (yet). Later this week we will be posting our review of the Losi LST XXL2 Gasoline truck. This is the second small scale gasoline vehicle (it just missed by a few days of being first) to hit the market. Does it pick up the ball where the Octane dropped it? Is it the revolution that everyone has been waiting for? Find out later this week on our front page.

That’s it for this week. I wish you all a funtastic July 4th and see you again this time next week. Support your local hobby shops, bash spots, and fireworks stands when ya can.

YOUR Cub Reporter

Maxxis TiresLast week our wonderful sanctioning body put out a press release (of sorts) concerning traction control at their races. Here is their PR where they state anyone caught using it gets a 5 year insta-ban…

“The ROAR Executive Committee has decided on a 5 year Suspension from ROAR events for any infractions of rule 5.2.3 The use of traction control sensing devices, active suspension devices, and steering control devices aided by gyroscopes or accelerometers (G-force sensors) of any kind is strictly prohibited. Sensors may be used for the purpose of passive data recording but not for adjusting the performance of the vehicle while in motion.”

As most of you know, I am very “pro stability control”. I dig new technology, and I like how it can (in certain circumstances/conditions) make rc cars easier to control. So ya, you can guess my reaction to the ROAR press release.

Here are some reasons why the ban on stability control is a bad thing, and/or doesn’t make any sense…

1. Been to a “big” race lately? I have, and traction control/stability control won’t make much difference at those types of events. Why? Because they are all about like driving on fly paper. I guess some people don’t realize you have to be sliding around for traction control to actually kick in. These sugar coated/traction additive soaked tracks offer so much traction drivers spend all weekend fighting traction roll, not spinning out. Makes me wonder if any of the people making the “rules” have gotten out much lately.

2. There is no better traction control than the highly skilled trigger finger of a factory driver. Then you put those guys on a fly paper track, and well, seriously, they have no need, nor would get any benefit from, stability control.

3. Most local tracks go by “ROAR rules”. This means they will automatically adopt “no traction control” for their weekly racing. Have you been to many local races lately? Yes, of course I have, and those are the guys that can benefit from the new technology. Head over to YouTube and check out some local race videos. What you’ll find is one or two guys how can actually drive their cars hard and control them, and a whole lot of guys slipping and sliding and crashing their way around the track. How much fun is it to crash all the time and get lapped 5 times in a 6 minute race? Can’t be much…

4. The most elite racing on the planet, F1, has allowed traction control multiple times in the past. They were smart enough (and open minded enough) to try it. It’s truly sad that our tiny toy car sanctioning is so closed minded.

5. A few weeks ago I had a face to face convo with a multi-time IFMAR World Champion about stability control. He was/is as elite of an rc racer as anyone walking this planet. What were his thoughts on stability control? He stated that he wanted to see everyone have the best experience possible in rc, and for the vast majority of drivers that would mean using stability control. While neither of us wanted to see it used at IFMAR WC and ROAR National events, we both agreed that allowing it at the local level, if even just in the “novice” classes, is a great thing for the overall health of our hobby.

To boil it down, it seems like some of the people who are supposed to be “leading” our hobby continue to do everything in their power to keep it in the exact same place that it was in 1985…….

That’s it for this week ya bunch of lunatics, support your local hobby shops, bash spots, and tracks that allow stability control when ya can…

YOUR Cub Reporter

RC Monster TruckHello rc world, it’s Monday and that means yet another funtabulious edition of THE Cub Report.

A couple of months ago when hitting up my local hobby shop, I was quite alarmed when the owner of the shop told me that 2014 was the worst sales year he has seen in the 30+ years his shop has been open. In fact, he went so far to say that 2014 was “Apocalypticly bad” for sales, and that he couldn’t wait for his lease to run out so he could close up shop. Now certainly LHSs are getting hit hard by internet sales, so it is understandable has his sales could be down, but were sales just down at his LHS, or at most hobby shops across the country? What about sales overall? Were the internet places having a bad year too? What about the manufacturers, are sales down for them too?

During my constant travels since then, I’ve made it a point to ask every rc company I’ve visited, from LHSs to manufacturers, just how their year was going. Now… I knew some of the people I asked were always going to say “Sales are at all time highs!!!!” regardless of what the real numbers were. For those people I pretty much zoned out during their answers, but I’ve also gotten the chance to talk to over a dozen people I truly trust, the types of people who aren’t going to just yank my chain. And… yes, it sounds like sales are slow across the board. Most of them were not in full blown panic mode like my LHS owner, but virtually all of them had no problem admitting to me that 2014 has been a stinker thus far for sales.

Why do I bring this up? Because many people in our industry, whether they work at an LHS or at the largest of the manufacturers, don’t often get the chance to honestly talk numbers with people from other companies. And…. because THE Cub Report is read by loads of industry types, I can help spread some information they might be interested in, such as 2014 looks to be a down year. To boil it down, 2014 looks to be a tough one for our industry, but everything works in cycles, lets hope this dip doesn’t last long and gives way to higher sales in the very near future.

If you are a consumer, what does this mean to you? Chances are if you are in the hobby right now you are already spending plenty, however, you can still help spread the word about rc. You can place an rc related sticker on your full size whip, you can do some bashing at the local park to show others how cool it is (in a responsible manner of course, don’t run over any kids with your 5th scale), and of course by just keeping on supporting your LHS or wherever you get your gear from.

On an unrelated note…

We posted a screenshot over the weekend from Tower Hobbies’s website showing Kyosho product on their “Just Announced” section. It’s been several years (a decade???) since the two had a falling out, and if in fact Kyosho is back with Hobbico it should be great for both of them. It gives Hobbico yet another awesome line to sell, and finally gives Kyosho the big distribution they need to excel in the American market. No, I don’t have any inside info on this one, but I’ll be in Champaign later this week and will try to get the scoop face to face.

That’s it for this week, support your local hobby shops and bash spots when ya can!

YOUR Cub Reporter

The Cub Report Schaumburg“There is a reason they are number two!” is a phrase I say at least a dozen times a week at the BSRC offices. What do I mean by that???

For example, there is a reason Pro-Line is number one in tires/wheels/bodies. They put out a superior product, they have a superior marketing plan, and they have superior people working behind the scenes. The companies in second/third/fourth/fifth? They may have great a great product, but never return emails. They might have a decent marketing plan, but their product stinks. They might have great people, but their marketing plan was created sometime in the late 1980′s. In this industry, or any industry really, you’ve got to be the complete package to get to number one, and an even better one to stay there.

Lets look at car manufacturers. There is no doubt Traxxas rules the roost. They have spent millions of dollars taking rc marketing to places it has never been before, and they put out a solid line-up of products for people who are actually looking to have fun driving rc cars. Their replacement parts can be found on pegs in nearly every hobby shop in the country, and if you have an issue and call them, chances are pretty good you’ll get a human being on the other end of the line. But… there is a reason the number two manufacturer is number two. They might have awesome products, “next generation” type equipment in fact, but because of an irresponsible employee, they might have no problem buying some bogus industry award and their products never get reviewed by any reliable media sources that people actually read (and trust). The number three manufacturer might be where they’re at because they are slowwww to react to market trends, thus they are always 3-5 years behind what consumers really want.

I suppose if you are inside those companies it would be impossible to see the reasons you are not number one (just like I can’t see the 500 things we are doing wrong here at BSRC), but from outside those issues can stick out like sore thumbs. From my perspective, I can easily see how a company can go from grossing 10 million dollars a year, to 15, or 20, or 30. An example? I am thinking of a certain long time rc company, one that has a very dedicated and gifted staff, one that puts out a solid line-up of products year after year. However… they do next to nothing for marketing. Their idea of marketing (for an entire year) is putting up a company FB page, then spending X amount of cash buying robot followers. And… despite them not doing a drop of decent marketing, I’d bet they still gross 10 million in sales this year. If they had the remotest clue about marketing in this day and age, and spent about 5k a month across a variety of solid platforms, I’d bet my best Tag they could double their gross sales in 3 years. Heck, I know of another rc company with great products that could probably double their gross sales simply by responding to emails and phone calls instead of blowing them all off. Yes, some issues can be that simple, and can cost a company thousands/millions each year.

To wrap this up, it is easy to point out exactly why number one companies like Hobbico, Traxxas, and Pro-Line are number one (and have been that way for years), they have their acts together and deserve to reap the rewards of their hard work. The number twos? Ya they deserve to be exactly where they are…

That’s it for this week, support your local hobby shops and bash spots when ya can…

YOUR Cub Reporter

Gluing RC Tires Pro-Line
While I highly prefer to save time by using pre-mounted tires, gluing tires is still a part of our wonderful hobby. For you old timers, you can glue up a set in your sleep, for you new hobbyists, it isn’t nearly as hard as some people (like me) make it out to be.

I recently got a set of Pro-Line Gladiator SC tires to put in the front of our Pro-Line Pro-2 SCB Converted buggy. For all you newer hobbyists that may not know how to glue tires, here is how I do it…

1. There are tons of tips and tricks that can be used when mounting up tires. Unfortunately, all those take time, and I am incredibly lazy, therefore I bust it out the fastest way possible. Step one is quite easy- get everything you need gathered together. What do you need? Well, tires of course, a set of wheels, some tire/CA glue, and some tire bands. That’s it. Yes, really. Oh, before I forget, we recommend using Pro-Line uber tire glue, but if your LHS doesn’t have any, take note. The thinner the CA glue, the faster it will dry and arguably the harder it will be to work with. The the thicker the glue the easier it is to work with and the longer the drying time.

2. Step two is super easy, simply slide the tires over the wheels. This is impossible to mess up, unless your tires are directional. If you have directionals, mount the wheels to your truck, then slide the tires over. This ensures they are all going the right direction before you start gluing.

3. For step three you need to make sure the bead of the tire is well seated into the bead on the wheel. Once again, this is an easy step, pat yourself on the back when you have all the beads set.

4. About those tire bands… some people install them now before gluing, some immediately after. For a noob, you’ll probably want to put them on before gluing. The bands make sure the beads stay down tight against the wheel for a better glue job.

5. Hey, bust out that glue, it’s time for some real fun. This step can be a bit tricky, so pay achtung here. If it’s your first time, a set of safety glasses is recommended, you really don’t want to get any glue in your eyes (trips to the ER waste a lot of time). Also, be careful not to accidentally glue one of your fingers to the tire/wheel. What happens if you get your finger stuck? It is stuck there forever, and good luck pulling chics with a Gladiator SC hanging off your hand. But seriously, if it gets stuck, it isn’t the end of the world, wait a few minutes and slowly (read- SLOWLY) peel the glue off your finger. To get back to business here, slightly peel back the tire bead and apply the glue to the tire/wheel. Do this all the way around the tire.

6. Ok, its time for a break. Ya, step 5 is awesome. But seriously, when you’ve done one side of the tire, give it a few minutes to dry before you do the other side. Why do this? To help keep yourself from accidentally gluing one of your fingers to the tire.

7. Get back to work ya sloucher, now it’s time to glue the other side of the tire. Just like you did on the first side, lightly pull back the bead, apply glue, and go all the way around the tire.

8. Finally, the last step and it’s really hard. Once you have both sides of all your tires glued, let them sit and dry for a while. Overnight is preferred, but in a pinch you can run them in a manner of minutes. Once dry, mount them to the vehicle of your choice and give them a good thrashing! It isn’t uncommon for tires to come loose on today’s high powered machines, if yours does, no worries, just clean the tire/bead the best you can and re-glue.

Pro-Line Items Used-

Gladiator SC Tires- #1169-01, $22
F-11 SCT Wheels- #2740-03, $9
Pro-Bond Tire Glue- #6031-00, $8
Tire Bands- #6086-00, $11

Read more “How-To” articles at This Link on BigSquidRC.

Cubby Keeps Breaking TrucksOur industry really likes noobs, the rc hobby would not exist without them. If you are in fact a noob and reading this, thank you for giving the rc hobby a shot. However, just because you are an rc noobie doesn’t mean you have to look like one. Here is my advice on how not to stick out like a sore thumb as an rc noob when around seasoned hobbyists-

At The Hobby Shop-

Know the easiest way to spot the noob at a hobby shop? Yup, he’s the guy up at the counter with his car in hand. If you don’t want to appear as an rc noob leave your car/truck/buggy at home. Yes, if you are at the hobby shop you are most likely there for replacement parts, but that doesn’t mean you need to drag in your filthy truck to show the hobby shop worker that your front a-arm is busted up. Trust me, he has seen your truck/car/buggy a hundred times before and your new Ruslter VXL isn’t going to impress him.

What you really need to bring to the hobby shop is a part number. Look at your truck, see what is broken, look the part number up in your manual, then hit the hobby shop. While I know several hobby shop employees that have memorized thousands of part numbers, most are not that way, if you bring in the part number you are saving both yourself and the hobby shop time. And… at crappy hobby shops the guy behind the counter might actually look up the wrong part number, so to make absolutely sure you get the part you really need, trust me, just bring the part number in with you.

If you are shopping for a new car, don’t have the guy behind the counter pull down two dozen different models ranging from a Losi Micro SCT to a Losi 5IVE-T to look at. If you are that clueless about what you really want, chances are you aren’t going to be happy with whatever you pick off the counter. Do some research at home (like reading reviews on BSRC), before you crack the door on your LHS to buy a new car.

Also… don’t haggle. Seasoned hobbyists know the mark-up is diddly squat on kits/rtrs, and they know the hobby is in a slump right now, your LHS can use every penny they can get. As a noob why would you want to keep your LHS’s doors open? Because if you break your truck on a Saturday morning you can drive down to your LHS and have your truck running again in an hour. If your LHS goes belly up it will take days before you’ll have your truck up and running again. Do you want to drive again later today? Or sometime next week? Ya, support your LHS.

At The Track/Bash Spot

Want to know the easiest way to spot a noob at the track? Ya, he’s the guy driving backwards on the track while standing down on the ground. If you don’t want to look like a noob get up on the stand and drive the right freak’n direction.

Now… yes, the BSRC Bash Crew is known for driving backwards on local tracks, but I can assure you we only do it to really set off the racer types that are wound wayyyy tooooo tight. For you, driving backwards can mean a nasty collision, which will cost you in parts, plus it can mean a run in with the local track a-hole, which might leave you in jail after you punch him in the face. Make life easy, drive the proper direction.

As far as the stand goes, it does give you a much better view of the track, making it easier to stay between the pipes. Many noobs crash a lot and tire quickly of going up and down the stairs (the famous “walk of shame”), therefore they elect to drive from the ground. The proper way of doing it is to get up on the stand and SLOW DOWN, and keep driving slower until you are no longer crashing.

Also… if you are noob who inherited some old truck from your Uncle Bob, you will stand like crazy if it isn’t 2.4GHz. It’s been nearly a decade since long antennas were common on transmitters, so if you don’t want to stand out, don’t even show up with an old school 27 or 75 MHz radio.

Want to really stand out as a noob at a track? Drive Traxxas. While Traxxas has kept our hobby alive for years, the vast majority of noobs at the track drive that particular brand. Don’t want to look like a noob? Give something else a try like an ARRMA, ECX, Durango, or Vaterra.

One more thing about noobs at the track, do NOT sway back and forth up on the stand. It makes you stand out as a noob, and drives the guys next to you absolutely INSANE. Just stand still, I promise you physically swaying from side to side will not make your truck drive any better on the track.

Cruising the RC Boards

Ok, so internet boards are dying off, so this actually applies more to Facebook Groups, but if you do not want to look like a noob don’t go full goofball on everyone that doesn’t agree with your opinion (that’s my job… seriously). But seriously, seasoned hobbyists have been surfing the rc sites since the ’90s and have already been hit with truck loads of hate and negative comments, so many that 20 years later there is absolutely nothing you could ever say that will even get their attention, all it does is signify you are a noob.

Another thing that will instantly make you stand out as a noob- regurgitating what you’ve read on-line, but never actually done yourself. For instance, if another noob asks “Which is better, Associated or XRay?” and you reply even though you’ve never personally owned either brand, you instantly look like a huge noob. If all your replies contain first hand info that you’ve learned all by yourself, you’ll be giving much better info than 90% of the people on the web, and will not come across as a noob.

Btw, “feels like” speed isn’t what you should post on-line about your car. Ok, so you are a noob and your car “feels like” it is doing 90 mph, this does not mean you should post that it actually does 90 mph, instead you post post its actual speed (probably closer to 30).

Want to sound like you are in-the-know with the industry types? Talk about THE Cub Report. Pretty much all the “big” names in the industry read it every Monday, and if someone brings up a certain Cub Report and you haven’t read it, ya, you are gonna look like a serious noob. So read up, there are hundreds of old Cub Reports to catch up on.

So that is it for this week’s Cub Report, get out and support your local bash spots and hobby shops when ya can.

YOUR Cub Reporter

Cubby's PlaceI got slammed in the face last week, slammed by the fact that the gasoline powered trucks are finally making it to the market.

While I know it’s a good thing for the hobby (the added realism of the sound and smell of a fossil fuel powered engine), I am forever a hardcore electric guy, and the realization that gas might be taking over again, well, it frankly sent chills down my spine. Why?

Just before the 2000′s life was good in rc. Most people drove electric 10th scale buggy, tracks were quiet, you knew pretty much everyone at the track, and things were in a nice quiet routine. Then came the Traxxas T-Maxx. The T-Maxx set off a firestorm that our hobby had never seen before.

Perhaps the biggest change it brought to the hobby was nitro, for years afterwards that’s all most people, including first time noobs, wanted to run. It also fostered in the age of Ready-To-Runs. Before the T-Maxx most hobbyists wouldn’t touch an RTR with a ten foot pole, afterwards, that’s all “average” hobbyists wanted. It also brought about a huge change at local tracks and bash spots. All of a sudden there was a huge influx of first time noob drivers, some driving the right direction on the track, others the opposite direction, and some others were simply jumping every pipe and going which ever direction suited them. Yes, there were a whole lot of near misses, a lot of chassis bending slams, and plenty of the ever hysterical, rod stretching, nitro runaway. Seriously, the early T-Maxx days were insane, at the local bash spot, and on dealer showrooms. Dealers couldn’t keep the T-Maxx, or its incredible amount of aftermarket parts, in stock.

Now… I am fairly certain that even if the new gasoline powered trucks are superb that they can’t make the same kind of incredible change to our hobby like the T-Maxx did. But still, gas just might blow up huge giving our hobby a very nice shot in the arm, something it could really use right now. That might not be something us seasoned hobbyists are really going to enjoy, but it is for the good of the hobby, so we need to help out all the noobs the best we can. Yes, seriously, even if you really don’t want to, play nice and be good ambassadors for the hobby.

Btw, for gasoline powered machines to really take off they really only need to do one thing- perform like a 5th scale HPI Baja 5B. By that I mean they need to- 1. start easy, 2. rarely need carb adjustments, and 3. have such a long runtime that you get tired of driving before it runs out of gas. Can the new breed of 8th scale gas burners pull those three things off? Well… our review of the HPI Octane Savage goes up tomorrow, there you can find out just how close the first entry into the gas market comes to those 3 goals. But… even if the early entries into the gas market do not solve all the problems nitro had, give the R & D departments at the various rc manufacturers some time and I’m pretty certain they can work out the kinks. To boil it down, IMO it’s just a matter of time until gas takes over, at least for a few years (but I’ll be very happy sticking with my 6S MT4 G3 thank you very much).

That’s it for this week ya bunch of raving lunatics, support your local hobby shops and bash spots, and don’t forget about all the people that paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.

YOUR Cub Reporter

rc bashing with CubbyWhile out in SoCal a couple of weeks ago, Brian and Tim were busy gallivanting around the rc scene, while I was hang’n with people in the motocross industry. On one particular night, I was able to sit around a ridiculously large table, one covered with all sorts of edible delights, with a number of makers and shakers in the moto industry. At one point the conversation turned to amateur motocross racing, specifically, the decline of racing at the local level. One of the men at the table turned to me and said, “There are just too many amateur nationals. Everyone is focused on Loretta Lynn qualifiers and nobody races locally anymore.” Indeed, arguably the biggest problem in motocross today is the sparse turnouts at local races.

Amateurs hitting a bunch of big events, whether it be motocross or rc racing, sure do spend a lot of money. They need bikes/cars/trucks, tires and more tires, and all the nic nacs it takes to get though a big race. Turnouts at big amateur motocross events are as big as ever, and entries at big rc events are too. You would think that would be a great thing for both industries, racers spending lots of money.

However, there is a downside. A bunch of people racing a select number of big events doesn’t sell nearly as many cars/parts/etc as a whole lot more people racing locally every weekend. And perhaps even worse, a bunch of very hardcore/talented traveling racers tend to run off noobies when they do decide to hit a local weekly race. Low turnouts plus the running off of noobs equals what motocross and rc has now, lackluster local racing in most areas of our country.

And… maybe you haven’t noticed, but the two biggest trends I see at both local motocross and rc tracks are- 1. receding hairlines, and 2. grey hair. While people with grey/receding hair tend to have more disposable income for racing, that isn’t a very good trend for the long term health of our industry/hobby. When the age average of participants at local tracks does nothing but keeping getting older each year, that does not bode well. Believe it or not, some people care that our hobby stays healthy enough in the long term that our kids/grand kids can enjoy it too. Unfortunately, there are too many people concerned about making the quick buck via too many big races, instead of a long term fortune via strong local racing. Does our industry have what it takes to make the changes necessary for local racing to regain its former glory? Or will they do nothing and watch it further die off, along with all those lucrative dollars that go with it?????

That’s it for this week’s Cub Report. If you get a chance, drop by your LHS and see what’s kick’n, and drop by your local bash spot too if you get some time.

YOUR Rub-A-Dub-Dub Cub Reporter

Cubby The Cub ReportHello rc world, nice to meet you, I’m Cubby and this is THE Cub Report.

As you’ve seen from our front page we spent last week gallivanting around SoCal hitting up the makers and shakers of rc. Why would we do such a thing? That was the most frequent question asked by the manufacturers when we dropped by. As a reader/basher, you probably know why you would do it, simply because it’s pretty dern cool to meet all those people. But… we’ve met most of them before multiple times, so that’s not why we did it.

We visited nearly a dozen different manufacturers/vendors/retailers, and we did it for one reason- quality face time. You see, we spend time with many of those same people at trade shows, but at the show everyone is too dern busy to really get to know each other. The BSRC Bash Crew is from the Midwest and we’ve been raised to take the time to honestly get to know people, so that’s really what we were doing (not flying out to hit them up for more advertising dollars, like some may be saying). It didn’t matter if the people we met were advertisers, or people we know will never spend a dime on BSRC, we just wanted to give people a chance to get to know us, and for us to get a chance to get to know them better than the casual conversations we have over a Rosemont dog and Pepsi at a show.

I have no idea what the most important thing the manufacturers would say they learned about us, but I sure do know what we learned about them. As a whole, we were blown away by how much everyone we met cared about the bashing market. Even at manufacturers that put out loads of racing gear, they did not look down at bashers. It was more they wished they had a bigger slice of the bashing market, but because of their backgrounds, they find it hard to relate to what a typical basher would actually buy/use. So I’d like to tell you this- there are a lot of misconceptions in the rc world, and we found out first hand that while a company may be aimed at the “race” market, it does not mean they don’t care about, or look down on, bashers. And… with those companies, we did our best to help fill them in on what they can do/produce that our readers need/would like to buy.

I think there are far too many misconceptions in the rc world, but at least on our end, one short plane trip to Southern California helped stamp out many that we had, and hopefully many that the manufacturers had about us. As a reader I hope if you get the chance to have a nice long convo with the “hard core racer guy” you run into, do it, he might not hate your bashing as much as you think he does….

That’s it for this week ya bunch of psychos, hit up your local hobby shops and bash spots when ya can…

YOUR Cub Reporter