So I actually took the reverse path into RC that a lot of people do, first getting into electric and then getting into nitro. I had been racing electric RC’s for a really long time before finally getting the guts to get into the nitro’s. Part of the reason was that I didn’t really have any other friends in the nitro game and the other part of it was my lack of trust in my own abilities to maintain and troubleshoot a complicated nitro motor. It seems like for a lot of people dealing with Nitro motors is an area of comfort, especially if you are already mechanically inclined or enjoy working on cars in real life. For those of us who the answer is almost never clear Nitro presents a pretty stiff challenge.
I finally broke down and bought my first nitro, it was a Traxxas T-Maxx. After a pretty smooth break in period the problems started, and it’s been an unforgiving battle ever since. That said, I learned a few things about nitro that I wanted to share with you, not even related to maintenance.
Noise Can Be Awesome….And Not Awesome:
If you live in an area where you have a lot of neighbors like I do then you know how annoying it can be when the neighbor gets up a little too early to mow his lawn or yell at the kids. Well, when I bought my first nitro I picked up on something right away, that thing is freakin loud! Lucky for me my neighbors are pretty cool about things, and I also have plenty of other areas to run my T-Maxx. It is really convenient to be able to work on your Nitro and test things out frequently, and it would be a huge pain if I had to drive to the park all the time.
As much as we all love the roar of a nitro engine just keep in mind your neighbors may not, and before you go ripping up and down the street with your new nitro RC you have to be aware of that.
Fuel Is Expensive:
The other big thing I wasn’t expecting is exactly how expensive the fuel is, paying $20-$30 for a gallon. Sure it lasts a really long time, honestly it took about a month before I even went through a gallon but the added expense was something I wasn’t really planning for.
Here in Wisconsin the weather can change seemingly from minute to minute, something I never paid any attention to all those cold winter days and humid summer nights outside racing my electrics. The fact is different weather conditions will require different tuning in order to make sure your nitro motor stays running correctly and in some conditions you will be fighting a losing battle. It really isn’t a huge deal for me but if you are planning on running it year around and you have very different weather from season to season you will want to keep those tuning tools handy.
This is of course by no means a complete list BUT this is the 3-4 things that really stuck out to me when I started running nitro. It would be really cool if you could share some of your thoughts below to help inform the readers of the lessons you have learned as well.