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Radio Controlled Car Guide
All about the latest and most popular radio controlled cars and trucks. Large photos, product information and buyer's guide to help you get started in the fun hobby of r/c cars. Electric, nitro, on-road, off-road... there's a model and kit for you.
Choosing a Radio Controlled Car
If you are looking to buy an rc car or truck, here are some tips and guide to help you out.
Electric, Nitro or Gas
There are three types of engines or powerplants that move these vehicles.
Electric powered cars have a 7.4v battery pack, electronic speed control and 540 sized electric motors. Highly recommended for beginners as these are simple to use. Electric rc cars are also quiet and can be run almost anywhere, indoors and outdoors.
Nitro rc cars are powered by .12 or .21 cc engines using special fuel blended for these engines. Typical run times are 5 to 8 minutes per tank of fuel. These are for more experienced hobbyist who want realism and enjoy tuning nitro engines, clutch, 2-speed transmission, etc. You will need to consider that these are noisy and need big spaces in order to run at speed.
Gasoline rc cars are typically 1/5 scale in size and run on regular gasoline mixed with 2T motor oil. With run times of 30 minutes on a tank of fuel, these are probably the most economical to run. Recommended for advanced hobbyists who have large open spaces to run these big toys.
On-Road or Off-Road
Popular are on-road rc cars and off-road rc trucks and buggies. If you are undecided, start with an off-road r/c truck. These are typically durable and can run both on and off road conditions. Currently popular are the 1/10 scale Short Course rc trucks and R/C Monster Trucks.
Scale Model Size
How big depends on where you plan to run your remote control toy. If in your living room or garage, stick to 1/36 and 1/24 scale mini rc cars such as the Losi Micro T or Kyosho Mini-Z.
For parking lot or backyard bashing, 1/18 to 1/10 scale cars and trucks would be a good choice.
And if you have big wide open spaces, 1/8 to 1/5 scale models are big fun.
Kit or RTR
To make it easy to get started in the hobby, there are various options to choose from.
If you love building models, then the kits are perfect for you. These need to be assembled and painted. You will generally need to buy the radio control system, batteries and charger separately.
Ready to Run (RTR) are aimed for beginners who want to open the box, charge the battery and start playing. These usually included everything you need to get started. Though some will require you purchase AA batteries for the radio controller.
Popular brands are Tamiya, HPI, Kyosho, Team Associated, CEN, Traxxas, OFNA, Team Losi, Schumacher, Team Xray and Yokomo. Stick to popular brands as they try to ensure quality toys and sell spare parts to keep your kits up and running.
Where to Buy Radio Controlled Cars
You can buy hobby quality r/c cars from your local hobby shop (LHS). Or you can buy from popular online hobby stores and have these toys shipped directly to you. Buying kits, rtr and spare parts is now so easy.
So hope this quick guide helps you in buying your next rc car or truck. Have fun!
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