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RCX 2012’ Category

Cubby Remember a few years ago when CES (Consumer Electronics Show) was thought to be on its last leg? Remember over a decade ago when iHobby was thought to surely be gone in a “couple more years”? Actually, all trade shows of every sort were thought to be on the edge of extinction, and why shouldn’t they? The web has taken over information transmission between the industry and consumers, and most of the communication within the industries themselves. When company XYZ releases a new truck they don’t wait a few months and premier it at a trade show, they post it on the web as quickly as possible. When XYZ needs to source a new fuel gun they don’t wait and meet with a potential manufacture in person at a trade show, they hit the web looking for a company that can make exactly what they want. When consumers shop for a new rc car they scour the web to see what’s hot. There just isn’t much reason for any type of trade show to flourish these days.

Yet… CES has blown up to epic proportions, iHobby had record industry and consumer support just a couple years ago, and most recently RCX had arguably its best supported show to date over the weekend. Despite the fact that all trades should be dead, they continue to flourish.

Consumers still love trade shows- love’em enough to load up the Wagon Queen Family Truckster with kids, pay for the show tickets, and spend a precious weekend day off on them. It makes for a great day out with the family, all the while allowing the interested party to mingle with industry types and view/touch/hold the latest and greatest in person.

CES’s huge surge in popularity has shown that given enough media exposure that trade shows are well worth the expense to manufactures. CES was not only covered by thousands of websites this year, but it also had live tv coverage. There certainly is a price associated with the exposure of your company to each individual consumer, and CES has risen up to become an excellent bang for the buck. While booth prices at CES aren’t cheap your product gets exposed to millions of hungry consumers, in the end making it a good value.

RCX was held in Long Beach over the weekend and consumers came out in force, which, while I am certainly no fan of Air Age, any show that helps boost our hobby is a great show in my eyes. RCX is a show that hasn’t been that well supported in previous years, but consumers and industry types alike had nothing but praise for the 2012 SoCal edition. A lottttttt of props have to be given out to all the people that attended the show, at the end of the day what matters most is how many people walk through that gate, and SoCal rc’ers once again showed their rabid support for the hobby. And… I think once again props have to be given out to Traxxas, Thunder Tiger/Associated, and Horizon/Losi for their mainstream advertising of our hobby. Many (some would say most) of the people walking the RCX show were there, at least in part, do to the recent explosion of mainstream advertising by Traxxas etc. It goes to show all those big advertising budgets do pay off, and do trickle down to everyone else in the hobby.

For the manufactures that got booths at RCX they certainly got their moneys worth with walk in traffic. Being exposed to thousands of SoCal rc’ers in person is awesome and helped make it worth exhibitors time and money. But, with the exception of us here at BigSquid (where Brian and Jeff and Greg totally kicked ass as usual), media coverage was abysmal at best. For the exhibitors to really get their moneys worth from these shows they need much better media coverage. You can go up to any rc company and they can give you an exact dollar figure on what a show costs them to do. If doing a show costs company XYZ 5 grand, they’d like to at least get 5 grand worth of exposure out of it (hopefully a lot more). Certainly BigSquid reaches a lot of people out in cyber space, but there are a lot of other “big names” in the rc media that continually drop the ball when it comes to rc show coverage. Some will cover the heck out of Billy Bob’s Bi-Weekly Trophy race in Sh#tkicker Idaho, yet they don’t even bother to cover one of the biggest rc shows of the year.

That’s it for this week amigo’s, support your local hobby shops, tracks and bash spots!

YOUR Cub Reporter

Seriously you guys… you have NO IDEA how excited Brian was when he got to meet Brandi and Jarrod from the A&E TV show Storage Wars. I’m  hoping that’s just a shadow on the crotchal region of Brian’s pants. I don’t know for sure though, he was THAT excited.

The LiPo safe charging bag is a simple tool that many of us use multiple times a day and probably take for granted. Nearly every RC company on earth makes a bag of their own, but have you ever wondered where the idea came from? It was the brainchild of Mark Wood. He invented the thing. And he’s still making them. The Original LipoSack is made in the US of US sourced materials. You can find out the history of this seemingly minor, but potentially life saving invention at the LipoSack web site, and while you’re there be sure to check out their products.

RC4WD is showing off their recently announced but still unavailable Trail Finder 2 kit. Beyond the awesome scale looks, this sequel to the Trail Finder 1 features a newly designed chassis, an all new transfer case, a new R3 2 Speed Transmission, cast Yota axles and plenty of other great features.  The truck still doesn’t have a precise release date, but you can be put on the waiting list to fork over $399 when they do become available by heading to the RC4WD store.

Team Chase is showing off their new skid plates for the Losi 5ive-T. These plates are made out of the same durable nylon material that their popular Baja 5T cages are made.  Team Chase claims that these plates offer extra protection for the 5ive-T’s chassis, gear box, and stock skid plate. These parts, like all Team Chase parts, will be available through TGN Distributing very soon.

One thing that really separates RCX from our favorite show, IHobby, is the on-site vending. RCX gives very prominent positioning to a few major retailers. Pictured above is Pacific Coast Hobbies, another big vendor is HobbyPartz, at right. Both have great deals going on all weekend with show specials and new products. Both booths are enormously popular with show visitors.

News out of the Panther booth is all about their new Gold compound. They call it an intermediate soft that offers excellent dry track grip and better durability. Panther also claims that tires with this new compound won’t balloon (as much) under high speeds like the softer rubbers do.  Only a few of their treads are available in the Gold compound right now, more are expected to follow. No stop at the Panther booth would be complete without ogling their Paddles, so check out the pic below of the Losi XXX-SCB wearing paddle shoes, then head on over to the Panther web site for more info.

What a couple of pleasant looking fellows, eh? We stopped by the Novak booth to take a look at their newly announced Impact brushless ESC. You can read the announcement here. While the Impact was billed in the announcement as a small ESC, we were kinda surprised at just how small it is. Tiny would be a more appropriate word. We also got a chance to look at their still relatively new Activ8 ESC for 1/8 scale brushless buggies and truggies. It’s not so tiny. But both have plenty of great features. Check out the pics below, then head on over to the Novak web site for more info.

Unfortunately, Hobbico didn’t have any beans to spill to us as far as new or upcoming products, but they still have a very large presence at RCX, showing off a ton of their relatively new products like the DuraTrax VW Baja Bug (which we recently reviewed), and all of their recently acquired Team Durango products.  Check out some more pics in the gallery below.

Of course, the biggest thing at the Traxxas booth is their new line of funny cars. The cars and tree light system are on display, along with the 1:1 inspiration that brought these little rockets about. But those aren’t the only new things in the Traxxas booth this year. Traxxas is also showing off a new body for the Grave Digger Stampede, dressed up in Grave Digger’s current 30th anniversary paint job. There’s also a new shell for the Slash, flying the colors of the MOPAR sponsored RAM truck and sporting Rob MacCachren’s name. Check out the gallery below for more pics and hit the Traxxas web site for more info.

Pro freestyle motocross rider and Lucas Oil Off Road Pro 2 Unlimited truck racer, Jeremy “Twitch” Stenberg (left center), was prowling around the Horizon booth, racing with fans and being an all-around pleasant chap.

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Ah yes, Hemistorm’s $250 Penta body for the  Losi 5IVE-T that we announced early AprilIt continues to look awesome and it’s a great direct fit  body for the 5IVE-T.

Below you’ll see the custom paint job we featured as well as another paint job in the main pic above. Enjoy!

 

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We got the whole gang at the Tekin booth together for a tender family photo. And then we set about grilling them about anything new they’ve got coming. Well, they do have a new brushless motor, dubbed the Pro-2, which is ideally suited to 2wd vehicles. But you should also check out this RX8 ESC in a white case. We wish we could tell you that it’s loaded with a bunch of new, awesome, I, Robot inspired technology… but it’s not. It’s just an RX8 with a white case. It sure looks sharp though, doesn’t it? Check out the Tekin web site for any info you want.