Are you taking proper care of your RC nitro cars? A little bit of preparation can save you a lot of money in repair costs. Learning the basics of rc engine operations and proper maintenance will lengthen the life of your RC nitro cars and help you keep your vehicles in top shape.
RC Nitro Engines
The RC nitro car’s engine works very similar to a regular car engine. There are several parts of the engine that require attention for your vehicle to work at peak performance. Here are the main components RC vehicles rely on for efficient driving and the preventative maintenance you should take.
Fuel and Fuel Lines
The fuel used by RC nitro engines is a combination of nitro methane and a synthetic or castor oil lubricant. You must use the proper fuel combination for your vehicle. If your RC car is running poorly you need to examine the fuel system. Cracks or debris in the fuel lines may cause the engine to cut out. It is advantageous to check your vehicle’s fuel lines each time before running it. Clean out dirty lines. If you find problems consult your user manual before operating the vehicle.
The air filter is an essential component to your engine. The air filter clears out dirt and debris from the engine which permits it to run smoothly. If the air filter becomes clogged then dirt and heat will get trapped in the engine making it work harder to draw air in. This can substantially affect its performance or even damage the engine. Air filters can often be cleaned rather than replaced. If the air filter in the model you own is very expensive to replace you may wish to clean the existing air filter carefully and reuse it. Weighing the costs of an engine repair (if the cleaning is not thorough) with the costs of a replacement filter may be wise when determining the value of replacement versus cleaning.
Tuning the Engine
While nitro engines can be more difficult to set up than their electric counterparts they also allow for the operator to adjust the engine and the vehicle’s performance. The carburetor permits you to adjust the amount of air/fuel mixture that is being used by the engine. A low mix of fuel is called ‘lean’ while a high ratio of fuel to air is ‘rich’. Making small adjustments to the mix according to the driving conditions will fine tune the driving. On the other hand you need to be cautious that the mixture is not too lean or rich as this can damage the engine.
Check the tires on your RC nitro cars before putting them out on the track. Check that they are balanced following the instructions in your user’s manual. This is especially important during the initial setup.
Whenever you are putting an RC car on the road for the first time or after it has been shelved for awhile you should test the vehicle and tune it before running it fast or on rough terrain. After driving the vehicle check it for debris. Make sure the parts move freely and have not become clogged with mud or dust. Running the vehicle without ensuring it is clean can cause costly damage to the engine or other parts. Talk to experts about the recommended upkeep necessary for your chosen vehicle. Some models will have more expensive maintenance costs than others and may be a factor to consider when choosing your vehicle.