How to Make an RC Car Faster (Don’t Tell Traxxas!)

How to Make a RC Car Faster

Does your electric RC car have a need for speed? Maybe you are already bored with what the standard factory setting has to offer and would like to take it up a notch. You are at a right place because we have written this guide to show you how to make a RC car faster.

These 5 things are not too difficult to implement. It all depends on how fast you would like to go and how much you are willing to spend. We also share some recommendations and things to consider for each method. Now without further ado, let us take a look at the top five ways to make your electric RC car go faster!

#1 – Boost up the Horsepower

One of the easiest ways to boost up the speed power of your car is by upgrading the motor. If you are using the budget-friendly brushed motor, perhaps it’s about time to change to brushless motor.

If you are already running on a brushless motor, you can consider upgrading the turn rating, or Kv rating. This specification is usually mentioned on the product sheet. Look for it to get some idea of the speed capability of the motor – the higher the Kv rating, the faster the motor.

Once you boost the horsepower, you will notice a significant increase in your car’s speed. Plus, the brushless technology will also let you enjoy longer run times and higher efficiency.

Just keep in mind that the cost will increase as you change the motor. There are additional upgrades that will have to come together with this method.

You will need to change the electronic speed controller (ESC) as well as the batteries. The price of an advanced ESC/brushless motor combo can be quite hefty. For example, the Castle Creations Mamba Max Pro can cost over $100, and this price can sometimes be more expensive than the car itself!

Also, the regular Ni-Mh or Ni-Cad batteries might not have enough power to support your new brushless motor. If you don’t see any significant changes in your car after changing the motor, switch to Li-Po batteries instead. You will see amazing speed performance with them.

#2 – Upgrade the Batteries

LiPo BatteryBesides the motor, there is another easy way to make your electric RC car go faster – by changing the battery voltage.

For example, if you upgrade your cells from 7.4 volts to 11.1 volts, you will see an increase of around 25mph in speed! However, there is something to keep in mind. Make sure that your ESC can support the extra voltage. If not, you might end up damaging it for good.

Also, make sure the new battery can fit well onto your car chassis. Nevertheless, upgrading the batteries is still a great way to boost up the speed of your car. So, switch the 2-cell LiPo to 3-cell LiPo and see the positive changes yourself.

#3 – Tweak the Gear Setting

If you consider purchasing a new brushless motor and upgrading the Li-Po battery to be an expensive endeavor, here is a wallet-friendly option for you – just tweak the gear setting on your electric RC car.

There are two ways to do this. First, you can change the size of the small gear on the motor, also known as the pinion. Second, you can also change the size of the large gear on the motor called spur gear.

If you are changing the pinion, then go big. The bigger pinion comes with more teeth. As for the spur gear, go small. It has a smaller number of teeth.

So, what will you achieve with these combinations? You will get more speed of course! This is an ideal setting for your RC car if you plan to drive it on a long race track with few corners.

Some reports stated that a single pinion tooth increase would let you gain an extra of 2mph of speed or more! While this is not much in the scheme of things, every last mph helps.

Now before you go ahead and pick the biggest pinion you can find in the store, there are some trade-offs for you to consider.

The recommended gear setting above is not suitable for all types of racing. In fact, you will find your car to be sluggish on small tracks with lots of corners. Why? Well, it is because of the slow acceleration produced by the combination.

In the case of race tracks with lots of obstacles, it is better to go with smaller pinion and bigger spur gears. With this setup, you will achieve better acceleration and higher torque power.

Another thing to consider is that the big-pinion-small-spur-gear will result in an increase of the motor and ESC temperature. Always refer to your car’s manual to get the recommended sizes of gears. If not, you will end up with another trip to the store to purchase a new motor/ESC!

#4 – Change the Tires

RC Car TiresAnother method for you to try to get the maximum speed gain is by changing the tires. Firstly, always invest in high-quality tires. They are usually made of excellent compounds and can last for a very long time.

You will not only go faster with premium tires but you will also be able to handle tight corners quicker and more efficiently. Plus, with the right selection, the tires will have better grip and prevent your car from flipping from the fast speed.

Besides the quality of tire, you should also look for bigger sizes. The ones with bigger diameters can cover more ground per turning.

It has been reported that an increase of 0.5 inches in the diameter will result in 4mph to 5mph increase of speed. Now, that is a pretty significant change in the speed, eh?

Last but not least, always choose the right type of tires that suit well with your racing style. Following are some of the basic guides on how to choose the right tires for your electric RC car.

  • Bald worn – Runs well on paved roads and dry tarmac
  • Full spikes – Spins well in mud and on grass
  • Mini pin– Works well on clay and carpet
  • Step pin – Ideal for off-road surfaces

#5 – Reduce the Body Weight

Tamiya ChassisBelieve it or not, reducing the weight of the car can also help in achieving the top speed that you crave for. So, how can you make your RC car weighs lighter? First, you can change the heavy parts that lay on the chassis.

For example, you can opt for aluminum or graphite parts because they are relatively light in weight. Plus, you can also choose components that are made from light carbon. Also make sure to consider the weight of your tires and chassis.

Lastly, by changing the battery from Ni-Cad to Li-Po, you will also be able to reduce the overall weight. Switching to Li-Po is a good idea anyways because it gives more power support to your brand-new brushless and ESC!

With all these weight changes, you will see your car speed up on the road as fast as other RC supercars out there. One thing to keep in mind when it comes to tweaking the overall weight of your car: you might lose some of the traction due to the new, reduced weight. We recommend for you to add some weight to the front part of the car to have a better grip on the road. Also, consider the tips that we have given in #4 above when it comes to tire selections.

So, there you go – the top five ways to make your electric RC car go faster. Give it a go and witness your car change into a Roadrunner on the race track – Beep! Beep!

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