What once was a site for my business, Racers Edge R/C Racing and Hobbies, has been closed. That chapter of my life was fun and I may once again venture into it. For now however, welcome to my new web site. Racers Edge Radio Control. You'll find a lot of the same information from the old site here as well as hopefully some new stuff. Join me for a trip into the fun of the radio control (R/C) hobby/sport.
Huh, what're you talking about? R/C, what the heck is that, right? Well R/C is short for Radio Control and in this case it is Radio Control race cars. If you've never seen a R/C car then you've come to the right place. One thing before I go any farther. I am not talking about those cute little Radio Shack or Walmart cars here folks. The Radio Shack cars you guys see on TV all the time are absolutely NOTHING compared to the cars that we and a lot of others race all over the world. Did I say all over the world? Yes people these little toy cars are raced competitively all over the world! There are local, regional, state, and even world championship races for these cars and some people get VERY serious about racing.
Some of the different types of racing are:
Carpet oval happens to be my favorite type of racing. In this form of racing they lay down carpet on either a flat concrete base or on an elevated wooden form to make it banked in, well, an oval course. Normally the cars use foam tires in different compounds or softness in order to get the needed traction to keep the cars glued to the track. If you have ever seen a NASCAR race you can imagine what carpet oval is like.
Carpet roadcourse seems to be most popular with 1/12 scale cars. In this form of racing they lay down carpet on, normally a flat concrete area and use hose, boards, and other materials to mark out a roadcourse similar to what formula one cars race on. They also use foam tires in this form of racing to get the power to the ground.
Dirt oval doesn't seem to be as popular as it once was but in some areas is still alive and well. Dirt oval is just that, a dirt track in the form of an oval. You can usually find two types of tracks in dirt oval racing. The first is a loose fluffy type of track that favors using tires that have spikes and ribs on them. The second is a track that is hard packed, usually clay, that favors the use of foam tires as in carpet oval, as a matter of fact usually if it is a hard packed dirt oval the track owner will make it mandatory to use foam tire in order to keep from tearing the track up. If you have ever seen sprint cars or late model stock cars race you have an idea what dirt oval is all about.
Off road seems to be one of the biggest classes of racing that there is in R/C racing. Off road is kind of like a carpet road course but laid out on dirt with jumps and bumps thrown in to make it very challenging. Like dirt oval you can normally find two different kinds of tracks in off road. Once again they are first the fluffy type track that favors big spikes and agressive ribs on the tires. The other is the very hard packed track that can even form a blue groove in it from the tires wearing where the cars run on the track. On the hard packed track there seems to be two types of tires that are used. Some prefer to use small stubby spikes and less agressive ribs on the tires and lately I have heard of actually using tires that have all of the spikes and ribs shaved off the tire to make a slick tire. They then coat the tire with a lot of traction compound that makes the tire extremely soft in order to gain the needed traction. Some of you may have seen a stadium or off road type race on TV and in that case you will know what this is all about.
Concrete oval racing is probably one of the fastest forms of R/C racing on earth. The tracks that are used for this form of racing are usually very large. Concrete oval tracks are made from well, concrete and some even are or have been used for bicycle racing. The cars in this form of racing can use two types of tires. The first is the foam tires I talked about before. The second form of tires used are called caps or capped tires. These tires have rubber caps formed over the foam on them to give the traction needed to hold the extreme speeds these cars get up to. Once again if you have ever seen a NASCAR race on TV you can imagine what concrete oval is like.
Roadcourse is kind of like carpet roadcourse except the cars normally race on a course made on blacktop. These cars also usually use the foam tires mentioned earlier. You can get the idea of what roadcourse is like by watching a formula one or trans am race.
One of the newer forms of R/C or I should say one of the forms that has been seriously seeing a growing following recently is rock crawling. Using specially designed and modified cars these guys go where meer mortals of the R/C world are afraid to tread! Up amazingly steep inclines, over boulders many times the size of the vehicle, and through just about anything in their way. These cars are designed from the ground up to not be the fastest in a straight line but to be the fastest up, over, and around anything in their path. What was once a class of radio control that mostly scratch builders got into because of the lack of straight out of the box cars has now become one of the quickest growing because of the ready to run models now available. If you are into more of a slow speed challenge, rock crawling may be for you!
Last but not least we have parking lot racing. This seems to be one of fastest growing forms of racing since you can set up the track in any local lot that will let you take up some space. Parking lot racing is usually set up as either a oval track or a roadcourse, depending on the amount of room you have to use. One of the best things about parking lot racing is you can use almost any form of R/C car you want to race. There really isn't any form of tire that is prefered either. The tires of choice are the ones that work best for the particular track, be it foams or rubber tires.
Places to race R/C cars are located all over the place and you should be able to find a track near you to go out and see what these cars are capable of doing. One of the great things about R/C cars is anyone can run one be you old, young, fat, thin, tall, short, or what have you. I myself am in a wheelchair and find this to be one way of equalizing myself against any able bodied person out there.
Ok, ok, so you want one of these but you don't really want to race, enter the backyard basher. Many people find that they for one reason or another just don't want to get involved in the racing form of this hobby/sport. Some may realize that it takes quite a bit of money to race one of these cars competitively and some may just decide that they aren't the racing type. For these people you have the backyard, the street in front of the house, the driveway, and any other place you decide to play with your car. That's one of the great things about R/C cars, you can take them and run them almost any where at any time. So even if you don't feel like getting the adrenalin rush of seeing your car go flying by your friend and winning the big race you can still enjoy the fun of R/C.
Well there you have it, you should have an idea of what on earth an R/C car is now. If you follow some of the links that are on this site you will find out more information on one of the most fun hobby/sports that you will ever find around. So do some studying, find the car you want to buy, and go out and get started.
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