HOW TO PERFORM A POST;RACE INSPECTION
Bearings eventually go bad, so check and replace as
necessary. Start by removing the wheels from your
car and brush the dirt away from the shields of the
bearings. Next, spin the axles by hand, checking to feel
for smoothness. If they feel good, leave them alone. If
they’re gritty, remove them from the car, remove the
dust shields and spray the bearings out with a contact
cleaner. Once they’re dry, use a light bearing oil to lube
the bearings, reinstall the dust shields and then reinstall back into the car. If this process still doesn’t free
up the bearing, replace them.
Dirty rough bearings can cause
more harm then
good. So always
keep spare bearings around and be
ready for replacement.
CHECK YOUR MOTOR
After each run, use a temperature gauge to check
motor temps (see the manufacturer’s specs on recommended temperature ranges) and adjust gearing
accordingly, if need be. Also check to make sure the
sensor wire is securely mounted in its slot, the solder
joints connecting the wires to the motor are secure, and
inspect the motor can for any damage. Don’t leave it up
to chance; if there is a problem, fix or replace without
A great way to check your servo without disassembling
it is to grab the servo horn and rotate it gently
back and forth. If it feels smooth
then keep driving, but
if it feels
spots in its
servo and check
the gears for damage. Check the tightness
of the screw holding the
horn in place, as you want
it securely fastened down. Without
a properly functioning servo, your
car simply won’t work.
Since the wheels have already
removed, quickly run a brush
over the suspension arms to
clean them; while cleaning,
inspect for cracks or possible
damage that could lead to a
part failing. Also, grab the arms
by the outside corners and
wiggle them back and forth to
see how much play they have.
While you’re doing this, check to see if the main pivot holes have become egg shaped or
damaged. It is ok for the suspension arms to have a little bit of wiggle, but if the holes are
deformed, you’ll want to replace the arm. Be sure to check your front caster block and
rear hubs as well. Also, compress the suspension to make sure if moves freely. Chances
are, if it doesn’t move freely, you’ve got a bent hingepin that needs to be replaced.
It’s OK to have approximately 1/32" to 1/16"of play in the
suspension arms. ;e less friction they have on them, the
smoother the suspension works. Go beyond that, and it
works against you.
Fastener checks are mandatory. Take
your time and go through every screw
throughout the chassis, both top and
bottom, by hand. Do not use an electric
screwdriver for this, even if it has a super sensitive clutch. You’ll typically find
loose screws in areas where the chassis
flexes the most during driving. Some
kits are di;erent from others but after
a few passes through your car, you’ll
find out which ones are more prone to
coming loose. If you have screws that
are constantly coming loose, use a
small dab of CA glue for screws going
into composites and blue thread-lock
for screws going into metals.
Check to see that all the screws are tight on your
Sensor wires are notorious for coming loose, so always check them.
;e inspection/maintenance process should take you no more then 10-20 minutes,
depending on what you find wrong or the complexity of your car. Not only will you
have a greater trust in knowing that your car will hold together, but you’ll also have a
better understanding to the overall condition of your car. If you find yourself replace
various more parts more often then others, then you’ll have a better idea as to what
parts you need to regularly keep in your pit box. Remember that practice makes
perfect, and that includes post- run maintenance; after a while, it will become a habit.
Perform this maintenance routine and your vehicle will always be ready to go.