The Cub Report Version 11.02.08
Anybody else tired of blue colored anodized parts? Goodness knows I am. What made one-off works parts look so trick a decade ago, is standard equipment on every Chinese knock-off entering America. Ever notice the first hundred times you listened to “Come On Eilene” by Dexys Midnight Runners was ok, but the 101st time you wanted to stick a hot soldering iron into your eardrums? Same can be said for blue anodizing. Please, please industry, put this one to rest, it’s not 1998 anymore.
Which brings me to the new X-Ray T2‘ 009 touring cars. Plenty of anodizing on these remote control works of art, but it’s hard to describe the color other than “trick”. Seems Juraj Hudy is sick of blue as well, and decided to set the new standard on what high-end looks like now days. Props to him, props to X-ray.
So when is an American high end chassis manufacture going to pop up? There is lots of American talent around, and a need from the racing crowd for an elite/luxury race oriented chassis company. Maybe pull Gary Owens back into the scene for sales, Mike Ogle back out of the midwest for marketing, and grab a couple 20 something “wet behind the ears” engineering rc gear-heads for some “fresh to the industry” race platforms? Just say’n, there is a niche for uber trick race cars that weren’t engineered overseas and built in China.
And yes, I have to go there- the Novak press release. For those of you that didn’t see it this week, I’ll boil it down for you. If you run their motors above 175 degrees F, they will not warranty them. Now, for long time hobbyist, I doubt they expect any piece of electronics to have any real warranty to start with, as they’ve been taught over the years that nearly anything rc comes with a 50/50 warranty. Meaning the item is warrantied for 50 feet out of the store, or for 50 seconds from time of purchase, whichever is longer.
Now personally, I have a lot of respect for Bob Novak, not only for his leading edge electronics over the years, but mainly because he was the first “mainstream” electronic manufacture to jump into the brushless game. He jumped in head first, while all the other main-streamers wouldn’t touch the “new” technology. It took balls to do that, props to him.
So why issue a press release on not warrantying the motors? Can any good come out of it? That “term” of the warranty is probably already in the manual. So why issue what is essentially a negative press release?
Seems the guys at Novak are having some problems, problems with consumers using their motor with speedo’s that do not use a motor temp sensor, and consumers disabling the temp sensor on their Novak controllers. Why would a consumer want to do that? I blame ROAR, at least for the second scenario.
Brushless motors are a huge advancement in technology over brushed. It’s not really a fair fight. Yet, the brain surgeons at ROAR think it’s a good idea to include brushless motors in “stock” classes. The “stock” classes have been a deep belly laugh joke for nearly two decades now. Established as a way of keeping costs down, a class for beginning racers, and a way to “even out” the power output for racers, it’s nothing more than time and money intensive now days. And while a few noobs might race stock, it’s filled with far more 20 year experts than 2 week noobs.
So brushless motors hit the scene. ROAR, our most beloved of sanctioning bodies come up with the great idea that brushless “needs” to be allowed in stock racing. At first, they imply that 13.5 brushless winds is “equal” to a stock 27 turn brushed motor. Local racers gear the crap out of their 13.5’s and easily pwn every brushed motor on the track. Then ROAR decides that 17.5 brushless winds is “equal” to stock. Then racers are forced to gear even higher to make their ultra low kv brushless motors out-yank the brushed counterparts. Absolutely insane gear ratios must be used to get the 17.5’s up to speed with the brushed motors, such tall gearing that racers have to disable the temp sensor to have enough speed (even if it does end up ruining the motor). If you know anything about electrics, gearing anything to the moon is going to cause the motors to run really, really, really hot. Way hotter than 175 degrees, and easily hot enough to de-mag the rotor and ruin it. I equate what ROAR has done here to this- cars are much faster than horses, yet, there is no place on the planet where you take the tires off a car to slow it down to race “head to head” against a horse. Brushless is simply that much more advanced than brushed.
Can we face some facts here? The stock class isn’t doing what it was intended to do anymore. Old school hard-core racers will bitch and complain if it’s eliminated (let’s just clean house and ditch 19 turn as well), but at some point the sport must evolve if it is to grow. Use new rules/classes to highlight the good points of brushless like longer run times and nearly no maintenance. Done properly, even those hard, old school farts will have more fun than ever racing. Don’t force people to gear their under kv’ed brushless motors to death competing in an obsolete class, which in turn will keep Bob and the rest of the boys in orange from having to deal with needless warranty issues.
To change subjects- there was some interest in the blurb from Caster Racing about their new 8th scale brushless buggy, so the BigSquidRC test and head cheese at BSRC are going to try and work with the guys at Caster to show the world how well, and at what price point, an 8th scale brushless buggy can work. Can a good working BL buggy be done for under $800, $500, or less? Stay tuned in the coming weeks for the full test.
That’s it for this week, thanks for reading, support your LHS’s and tracks, and of course, forget your daily dose of BigSquidRC.
Your Cub Reporter