Wednesday, 3 October 2007

Alien is DEAD

Well thats it. The last run was just like all the others. The clutch went on one engine and the car did 81. Its in pieces now never to be rebuilt in that format.

I have deceided to build a single engine speed machine for now and see how fast I can get that to go before attempting another 3 engines machince. Both should be ready by September 08


Monday, 1 October 2007

One Last Run

Wednesday will be the last run of the car in its present form. I have rebuilt the car and reset all three clutches as close as possible and all three 2nd speeds exactly the same. I'll video the final speed run then its to be broken down into its component parts and be used for the new design.

Hopefully I will hve "Alien 2" up and running by March 2008. I will post the results of the last run.


Sunday, 23 September 2007

Speed Event

The speed event was held today at Long Marston and things didnt really go as planned but it wasnt a bad event. Here is the vid

The day started as it continued with me spilling a large coffee in my lap as I got out of the car!!

The timing loops were placed 30m apart and taped to the tarmac. The tape held up OK. DOug Tanner of Cotswolds RC car club was in charge of the timing and he did a fantastic job of organising. Well done Doug.

The trails got under way and I started with the RRR. I ran a couple of runs at 90ish then changed the gearing lower. The touring shell was lifting at high speed so changed to the Lola. I finally managed 100.00 mph over the 30m loop!! AT LAST!!

An electric car took off over the loop and nearly hit a kid that had wandered onto the track, it was then Doug decieded that we should move the timing loop so that it was behind the concrete barriers.

I ran the triple and had problems again. Poor setup was too blame and I should have spent more time on it instead of messing with the RRR. Anyway I think the problems are terminal and I will need to feed the power through a single 2 speed gearbox. To prove this I have ordered all new clutches and 2 speeds and will set them up so they are exactly the same. If this doesnt work its back to the drawing board.

I ran 103.59mph making the contest a dead heat between me and the electric guy.

Well thats the summer over and its back to crap weather, oh wait thats what we had all summer!! I plan to do one more run and then redesign the car for the world championships next year.

It's been a blast!!


Friday, 21 September 2007

5 mins of fame!

Well today was a bit odd. I went to the track on Tuesday with the BBC as they wanted to film the car for a news event. The article was aired on Midlands today and here is a link to the article

Then I got a call from the radio station in coventry and discussed the car live on air!! seems like everybody is interested in rc speed cars all of a sudden.

Anyway I managed to fit a .21 engine into the RRR. I had a to carry out a few mods to get it to fit

Firstly the engine mounts did not fit on the original chassis so I made a new one, Then the engine stuck out too far at the back so the middle belt wouldnt fit so I had to lengthen the lay shafts.

Its installed now so ready for Sunday. Here is a pic

Monday, 17 September 2007

RRR at 94 Mph

I made 94 mph today witht he RRR. I changed the gearing to 22/56 and the rear tyres to 65 mm. That means the engine was at 30,000 rpm. The max power will be around 35,000 rpm so it might go a bit faster with lightly smaller tyres.

Here is the vid...

I have removed 0.1 head shim and will try again with a cooler plug.

The triple seems to work ok but the engines need more running in. It took 2 hrs to mess with them as the starter box is not powerfull enough to turn them over when cold. I just ran a few tanks through them to try to loosen them up but everything went flat so went home.

The BBC said they will be filming the car and it will be on Midlands Today!! Must get my hair cut....

Thursday, 13 September 2007

Problem Solved

Well it wasnt the stinger length but the carb extentions. I took them off and managed to configure the carbs to pull at an angle. The engines now work perfectly with massive power right up to full revs and I can hold full revs for 6-8 seconds with no problem of leaning.

I still need to try it at the track but am confident now I have solved the engine tuning issues and can now attempt some speed runs at 100mph and beyond.

Wednesday, 12 September 2007


Well I got the new motors and have 2 installed. I tested the car just before I put them in and still had the same problem. I have narrowed it down (I think ) to the exhaust mod I did. The stinger is too big and not giving enogh pressure to the tank at high revs and so the engine goes lean. If I richen it uo then at low revs it bogs down and doesnt work.

I have changed the stingers from 10mm to 7.5mm and made them longer. Initial tests seem ok but I need a day at the track to really try it out.

Sunday, 2 September 2007

RRR 89 mph

I was testing again today. I have run in the OS .18 TZP Murnan and ran the RRR with the new engine. I clocked 89 mph running slightly uphill and against the wind with 20/56 gearing and 65mm tyres.

Here is the vid of an 87 Mph run

I then tested the triple engine car and tried everything to get the car going OK. I tuned each engine seperatly on the bench and each picked up to full revs in 2nd gear almost instantly. Each time I put it on the track they just bogged down just around the change point. The max speed I got was 78 mph.

I need to change all the engines for the same ones. The RBs I ordered were out of stock so I will get 3 x 35PLUS 21s instead as i thik they have more power. The other thing I want to change is the clutches. I think the weights are too heavy and need lightening up. I think they need to slip more.

I will also try installing just 2 engines and running the car at full speed. The reduced weight with only 2 engines should help

Tuesday, 28 August 2007

Murnan OS .18 TZP

I just got the Murnan OS .18 TZP for the RRR and have it installed and running in. First impressions is that it has massive low end power. I have managed 5 tanks running in and will be testing the RRR soon. I'll keep you posted


Friday, 17 August 2007

More testing

Well the 3 tanks didnt make any difference to the performance. It still gets to about half revs and then sounds like its starving of fuel. I am going to have to think differently about the needle settings. The plugs were not good and I didnt have any spares. I managed 82 mph

I managed to get 84 mph with the RRR with a .12 engine in it. If I had more room it would have gone 95 with this gearing

The electric car has problems with the diffs as the thing doesnt like going straight. 54mph was the best I could get.

More testing on Sunday if it doesnt rain....

Monday, 13 August 2007

3 tanks

I'm just back from testing and the engines were not happy. It was pretty obvious from the last run that the pressure in the tank is not suited to all the engines and so I need to change the single fuel tank to three

I have now fitted 3 tanks, one for each engine and just nran the car up the road. Usually its really sluggish to take off but this time it shot off like a rat up a drain pipe!! Usually one, two or all three engines stall but this time they all kept running and I could brake and turn around and do another quick burst. Looks like the next test could be the one!!! (100mph?)

Friday, 10 August 2007

Electric Car

This is the latest car for the speed event. The Yokomo BD with Novak GTB/Velocity 3.5R brushless and 4800 mah LiPo cells

My son will be running it so I can stick to IC cars only.. LOL

New Shell for the RRR

Pics of the new shell.

Thursday, 9 August 2007

Kyosho RRR BRCA legal. Top speed 130 mph

I just moded the RRR internal drive ratio to extend it for top speed. I changed the RRR rear diff to a custom solid axle with a 5mm pitch 14T pulley and added a 14T pulley on the layshaft. These were linked with a 10mm wide belt.

This mod changed the front to rear drive ratio so I had to change the side pulleys and belts. I ordered a 2.5mm pitch pully and belt system but it hadnt arrived when I checked what I had laying around. The 25T side pulley from the Evolva linked to the 15T side pulley from the Evolva gave me exactly the right overdrive ratio and the original side belt was a perfect fit!!

Pics below of the mod

The engine installed is the Novarossi 12-5 SCT but I am waiting for the OS 18 TZP Murnan Modeefied.

The rear pod pulls off and is replaced with a BRCA legal podfor normal racing. I just install the side pulleys back to kit and ready for normal racing

Sunday, 5 August 2007

No testing for a while

I went to Shakespeare raceway today and trierd to run the car but they are still clearing up from The Global Gathering last week. The end of the strip is a total mess and the fields are littered with broken tents

Next week is the Bulldog Bash so no testing this week and then they will have to clear up after that and then I'm on holiday... damn..

Unless I can find another site it looks like the next time I'll be running the car is September


Saturday, 4 August 2007

New Body Shell

This is the latest bodyshell to replace the last one that got trashed at the speed event.

Its basically the same 2 shells. The front is a Frewer GTR and the back is a Kyosho Lola. The Frewer came painted hence the snazzy paint job ant the front but I couldnt be arsed to match it up at the back so just sprayed the back white. I also left the wheels covered for better aerodynamics and cut the front bumper to lower the shell.

Its a slight improvement

Tuesday, 31 July 2007

Video of run and crash

Here is the video of the run. You can see the car under control until I jump off the wall then all hell breaks loose!

Sunday, 29 July 2007

Worlds Fastest Rc Car Challenge, Callifornia Speedway

It was all worth it!!

All the racers met at a local diner and had breakfast before heading to the track. The track was one lane of the california Speedway Drag Strip and had concrete wall all the way around. The track was slick and had zero grip! It was like running foams on wet tarmac.

I started my car and tried to tune it for the 30% Odonnel fuel and the 95 deg F temps. I had to lean the engines nearly 1 1/2 turns to get them to keep running.

I did a quick pass without the shell and a very short run up to the speed trap just to see if the engines would not flame out but all but one stopped before crossing the line at 48.2 mph.

It was hard to get track time as the electric cars were ready to go at a few seconds notice where i had to start all the engines and tune them up before running then back to the starter box after one had died.

Next run I tried to launch the car and keep the engines running. I did the same short run up and no shell. This time one engine stopped before the launch and the car did 68.7 mph croosing the line with no engines running.

I leaned the engines a full 3/4 turns and tried again. I extended the run up to around 200m and launched very steady. I managed full throttle at about 100m to go to the trap and got 88 mph. All 3 engines were still running so I managed to get the car back for another run. Right this is it!! A quick refuel and its a full run up at full throttle.

I jumped off the wall to fill the car and my knee caught the battery lead to the transmitter. The car took off and smashed into the wall loosing the front end. The car then took off up the drag strip crashing into the timekeepers chair and that was it.

Lessons learned.

The track conditions wer not good and I needed to have the option of running a smaller gear. I tried to go to fast and needed to get post a decent speed around 100 - 120 before gearing up.

The engines need to be changed for something with a lot more bottom end punch. Next plan is to:

Change the rear pulleys from 16/18 to 15/19.
Change the side pulleys from 19/14 to 18/15 to maintain 3% overdrive
Change the gearing to 15/49 45/19
Make and install 3 x alluminium clutch shoes
Install Novarossi 3 x 35 plus 21 engines. or maybe change out the R03 and the Sirio to RB Xenon Rs
Install a steering gyro

I also need a new shell as the blue one is toast!

I have pics and vids i'll post later


Wednesday, 25 July 2007

Packed and ready to go

The car is back together and tested. Just in time for the big event!

The bags are packed and everything is ready. I'm off to Los Angeles to attend the Worlds fastest RC Car comp at the California Speedway, Fontana on Saturday 28th July!

I think I have everything. I'll take some pics and video of the event and post them here

Monday, 23 July 2007

A bit of an "off"

Just back from testing at Mallory Park. The track was a bit wet so we waited around until it was drier. I ran the car up the straight and there was very good signal all the way to the bottom of the back straight.

I ran the car towards me and gunned the throttle. The car was heading in my direction so I made a slight correction and accidently let go of the button that reduces the steering to 15% and it took off to the left and into the grass. At that point it was doing 88mph.

Broken front wishbones, front bumper, lost drive shaft and lost one way drive cup!!

Not bad really seeing as it flew about 8 ft in the air for about 30 ft.

The new parts will be here tomorrow so its a last rebuild before the event.


Saturday, 21 July 2007


I just realised I havent got a decent pic of the finished car on the site. Here it is

Friday, 20 July 2007

Rain Rain Go Away, Come Back After Testing

I think I will give up building the RC car and build an ark instead. 5 days non stop rain! I have 5 days left before its off to the comp and I still havent found out how fast she will go. It looks like we will have a test on Monday as long as its dry... yeah right...

I made an aluminium Centax clutch shoe and tried it on the Xenon R and it looked real promising. I tried to make another one today but the lathe broke.

Roll on summer

Wednesday, 18 July 2007

Slight setback

I went to Donnington race track today for the final testing before the comp and it didnt go quite as planned. We started the engines and then lost radio signal so stopped them again. there was a hissing from the car and saw the RX pack was shorting itself out and getting red hot under the fuel tank.

We quickly removed the top deck and threw the pack on the ground where it caught fire!! 5 secongs later and it was goodbye car!!

The spare RX pack was no good either so we packed up and went home.

Better luck tomorrow

Saturday, 14 July 2007

Modified Radio

I think I might have solved the radio problems. Here is a pic of a 9db aerial attached to the Spektrum system. It has a much higher range but needs to be kept vertical.

I also found that the antenna on the receiver needs to be vertical and not kinked to achieve max range. If your thinking of doing the mod you could fit a 5db antenna that is less range but more forgiving of the vertical angle. Here is a pic of it

You can see its a lot smaller so easier to handle. I tested the range of the 9db antenna and found at 0.6 miles it was working perfectly. I then ran out of range.
Next is to test it in the car

Wednesday, 11 July 2007

Long Marston Testing

Today didnt really go as planned. we got to the drag strip and started the car and found the radio had no range whatsoever. I changed out the receiver and tried again but no luck so we moved to the end of the srtip where the range was better but not good.

I managed 4 runs and maxed at 81 mph which is no better than the last runs. I stood as far away as I could while still in control of the car and floored it. The car whizzed past and the failsafe just cut in. You can see in the vid the car veering to the side and the revs dropping.

I also had problems with the engines as the back 2 kept cutting and due to the radio problems couldnt keep the car in control to be able to turn around and run it back for a retune. It took 4 hrs to do 4 runs!

The drive train problem was a lost drive pin. I need to locktight them in

At the end of the day I changed the RX pack to a 6 cell and voala!! Problems solved but by now it was time to leave.

Off to mallory park for some more running on Friday. I'll be on my own so no vid but i'll attempt to tune the engines

I have the V6 clutches on order and the 9db anenna turned up but no cross over from the TX unit yet.

Tuesday, 10 July 2007

Home early

Im back home a bit early so had a chance to work on the car. I have installed the 4WD system. See below

The side belt fitted perfectly and the belt tensioner moves the belt down just enough so the belt does not foul the 1st engine exhaust manifold.

The drive train is as follows

Front tyres 70mm.
Front axle one way with 24T pulley
Front layshaft pulley 17T
Front side pulley 14T
Middle side pulley 19T
Middle pulleys 18T
Rear layshaft pulley 16T
Rear axle pulley 18T
Rear tyres 75mm

2nd speed pinion 22t
2nd speed spur 44t

This give a 2nd gear final drive ratio of 2.25
A top speed at 41,000 rpm of 157 mph
and a front to rear overdrive ratio of 1.0094

I'll be testing the car tomorrow at Long Marston Drag Strip

Thursday, 5 July 2007

Back at work

I am back at work for the next 4 weeks so cant work on the car. I have ordered the equipment to convert it to 4 wheel drive and have already reduced the gearing to help with clutch slip.

After the 79 mph run the clutch shoes were shot and the 2nd engine 2nd speed clutch had come loose. I have also found the reason for the tightness in the drive train and looosened it all up.

I am working on a solution to increase the radio range by fitting a 9db antenna to the spektrum system. I have also fitted a 6 cell pack to the receiver. Everything is ready for a decent run some time in August

Thursday, 28 June 2007

Test run at Mallory Park Racetrack

Just back from the track and the test run went OK. The engines were cold and it took me some time to start them but once running I managed a few passes with the capped tyres. After 2 runs up and down the track they were shredded!! Back to the drawing board for the tyres.

I changed to Ennetti 37 shores and they were much better. The handeling at speed was twitchy so I reduced the steering rate to 40% This sorted it out.

We did a speed run about 1/2 throttle and clocked 79mph on the gun!! Not bad for a first run.

After this run I got interference which was the RX pack going flat so charged it up but then the starter box blew up.

All in all a good day. For the next test I intend to change the gearing so that the back lay shaft is 16T and the drive is 18T reducing the gearing to help with the clutch slip.

As I was on my own I didnt manage to get any vid, only a short one of the car going away. Maybe next time

Tuesday, 26 June 2007

High ratio drive

I managed to fix the exhaust that broke last time out. I used a product from the USA called HTS 2000, it worked great.

I finished the high ratio drive on Monday. The rear pulleys were supposed to be 16t / 16t but the belt was too slack so I changed the one on the layshaft to 18T making the ratio even taller. The theroretical top speed is now 194 mph!! LOL. I received the capped tyres from ATS and installed them and I also got the new speed gun!

I started the car on one engine just to check the drive and reved it up on the bench. You could see the tyres expand as the speed increased. I then put it on the ground for a quick spin. Due to the weight and the tall gearing the car struggled to pull off the line and the clutch was slipping so much it started to smoke. When it stopped the heat in the clutch melted the 1st and 2nd pinion gears.

I changed them out and re started all 3 engines. This time the car lept forward and there was minimal clutch slipping.

Another change was I installed 2 x 7.2 volt NIMH 3300 stck packs externally into the TX and changed the TX unit to 40mhz. This allowed me to use a fail safe. The voltage on the TX registered at 16.7 volts and worked perfectly. I just need to see if this effects the range or not

Saturday, 23 June 2007

1st run with new pulleys and belts

We managed to find a nice open car park with nobody in it to test the car and the plan was to run with one engine to loosen the drive train up then do a quick run with three engines to see how it goes.

Here is the video of the run

As you can see the car was running OK with one engine but what you don't see on the video the jobs worth security guard who came over and told us to bugger off. This was just after running one engine. I decided to ignore him and start all thee engines anyway and do a quick blast.

You can see that the middle exhaust mount comes loose and so we had to abandon the attempt.

Even with the short blast the car had way too much power. The wheels were spinning at the blip of the throttle and this is with the practice engines 2 of which were not run in and all very rich with hardly any power!!

This is OK as the gearing is standard 1/8th gearing with top speed of 65 mph. When the high gearing is installed the wheel spin will be minimal.

The exhaust lugs were only held on with epoxy so i didnt expect them to last. We will re solder them in place and its off to find another car park for a decent test.

Thanks to Jez for the help.

Friday, 22 June 2007

Looks like I have the belt problem solved. Here are a couple of pics of the new belts and pulleys

I disconnected the 2 speeds for engine 2 and 3 and started No 1 engine and drove it around the road outside the house. I gunned it a few times but the turning circle is wider than the road so its a pain to pick it up and point it in the right direction. I'll do a test on all 3 engines tomorrow.

Saturday, 16 June 2007


I have posted a few pics on other forums of this car but thought I would get everything in one place.
The current world landspeed record for an RC car is currently recognised as 134.4 mph set by Nic Case with a modified Electric TC3 on 30th July 2006. ALl the recent record attempts on the speed record have been with electric cars so I thought I would design and build an IC car to compete with the electric boys.

I have been thinking of a 3 engined car for some time and mulling over the design for a few years and decieded to go with this idea. The original concept was to use 3 x .21 engines and try to use off the shelf items for all the parts of the car to keep down cost and custom engineering.

The target speed for the design is 150 Mph

Here is the first chasis I came up with

The intent was just to work out the bugs of the drivetrain. It was quickly apparent that for a car to travel at a 150 mph it needs a long run up. You also need to be able to see the car and control it. This limited the run up length and so the car also needs to accelerate quickly meaning the car needed to be light

After some thought the chassis was reduced to the one below

The front and rear end are from a Kyosho Evolva 1/8th circuit car. This was to fit with the design intent of using off the shelf parts.

The next job was to fit the engines. I had 3 old engines available that I could use to work out the drivetrain bugs and for a practice run. The plan is to replace these with higher power units when and if needed.

Here is how the engines are linked together.

Next is all the electrics and throttle linkage. This is how it looks before the test run

Above is a small vid of testing the car. We had 3 engines running and the car felt OK but the middle belt stripped again. I have ordered 10mm wide belts with steel re enforcing and new Aluminium pulleys. I will try the car again when they arrive. For now I'll work on the bodyshell

Here is a pic of the body shell. Its an Active Hobbies M-GTR 1/8th GT shell front with a Blitz LOLA rear stuck together and reenforced with carbon fibre rod.

All ready for the sponsors logo!!! LOL...

As you can see i re did the exhausts. I modified 1/8th circuit exhausts so the stinger is 10mm and exits out of the rear. I have been told this will help with high revs and also improve power at the top end where i need it most.
I started one of the engines and was surpriced that the noise level is no more than a normal exhaust. With it straight through I thought it would be much louder! This will please the batty old woman next door.. LOL
Well the new pulleys and belts arrived and as I hadnt modified the layshafts to take the 5mm pitch pulleys I fitted the 2.5mm pitch ones I had ordered previously. As the pulleys were much larger and have more contact area they would be a lot stronger.
I started the one engine and was nice and free with the clutch engaging and spinning the wheels perfectly. A few blips of the throttle and I opened it up for more speed and the belt snapped!!
Thinking it was probably a duff belt I fitted another and tried again. Same again! After a few revs a bit more speed and SNAP! BOTH belts failed!!
After some investigation it dawned on me what was happening. As the speed increases the 2 speed clutch on the layshafts connected to th engines that are off suddenly engages and the gears go from 0-15,000 rpm instantly. This loads up the belts and breaks them.
To run the car with only one engine you have to dissengage the 2 speed on the other engines.
I think the belts are slightly under strength so have decieded to fit the 5mm pitch belts. These take 74lbs load instead of 14lbs. This and only running the car with 3 engines running will solve the belt issue