Business Unusual

Rants from a working stay-at-home dad

Crawl, Walk, Run

September 28th, 2015 by Justin

This is a rule we use in life. You have to learn to crawl (or scoot), then walk, then run. I’ve treated my (re)entry into R/C racing the same way.

Alternate Crawl – Tamiya Mini

There is an alternative way to enter on-road R/C racing than Vintage Trans-Am (which I’ll talk about below) which is slower, but still a ton of fun. It is the Tamiya Mini class.

Tamiya Mini Cooper

SRAM Automatix on my 29er

September 14th, 2015 by Justin

I have a single speed bike. I chose a single speed for it’s simplicity. I just get on it and pedal. It has suited me well for about 6 years. The only thing that has changed is kids.

These darn kids, they start at 6 or 7 pounds and eat and grow, and grow and eat and never seem to stop! I used to carry Jules on the back of my bike in a babyseat that attaches to the rear rack. Then Marlo came along and I had the opportunity to buy a Chariot trailer from my friend whose two kids were now riding on their own.

1S-2S Electronic Speed Controllers

August 31st, 2015 by Justin

Looking for an electronic speed controller (ESC) for your R/C car than can handle both 1-cell (1S) and 2-cell (2S) lithium polymer (lipo) batteries has proven to be a difficult landscape to navigate. Some of this has to do with what the market will bear. Typically if you’re running a 1/12 scale car, you’re only running 1S batteries. If you’re running a 1/10 scale car, it’s 2S.

The 1S need for me comes from the fact that here in Minnesota, the local track runs a variant of Vintage Trans-Am (VTA) that uses a 17.5 turn motor and single cell battery. It was a carry-over from 1/12 scale cars that ran on 4-cell NiCad or NiMH batteries. The idea was to keep the VTA cars relatively slow, and to keep the cost down.

The drunken 2-year-old

August 17th, 2015 by Justin

No I haven’t been giving my 2-year-old wine, scotch, or beer. The point is, I don’t have to. She acts like a drunk 24/7. If you don’t believe me, I present for your amusement, the ways a 2-year-old is like a drunk…

They’re easily incited. If a chant is started, they’ll quickly join in, whether or not the chant goal meets their needs, they just want to join in the fun.

Hobby King GT-2 Radio

August 3rd, 2015 by Justin

I got this thing from Hobby King for just $20!

I’m sure there’s some nay-sayers out there who will talk about “glitching” and yadda-yadda, but I’ve had less problems with this radio than my entry-level Spektrum DX2E which is 3x the cost.

It has a bunch of poorly documented features, but they’re features none-the-less (the instruction manual is simply terrible).

Half Off R/C Racing Gear List

July 20th, 2015 by Justin

Here it is, a list of how to get into on-road R/C racing in two different classes (your choice) on the cheap. I’ll update this list and go into detail about the the components I find important. Mostly I wanted to make a list of everything I’ve purchased to keep things honest.

Adding V-Brakes to an old BMX Scooter

July 6th, 2015 by Justin

We got Marlo a Y Glider scooter for her 2nd birthday. At 18 months, I had already seen her try to take up scootering at the community center. Also, she refused to walk until the 21 month mark, although clearly she knew how to stand up and walk. She just preferred to scoot, earning her the nickname “Scootio”

Jules enjoys riding Marlo’s scooter as well, but I told him he can only ride it until he turns 6. At that point, I’ll turn him loose on an old-school Variflex Strada scooter I’ve had in the shed for some time.

Mega Mini

June 22nd, 2015 by Justin

My son Jules has really taken to R/C driving – and crashing. My formerly pristine Subaru WRX body has officially been put through the ringer:

So I asked Jules what sort of body he would like – hoping that I could save the Subie body from further destruction. But he has a hard time getting past the fact that lexan bodies are clear and can be painted in any color scheme, so he’s often influenced by the presentation color rather than the shape. Unable to get him to commit to something, I made an educated guess.

Mighty Mini

When we race at the Twin City On-Road Club in Cottage Grove during the winter, he usually winds up running in the Tamiya Mini B-main if there’s not enough people for a novice class. We even discussed getting him a Tamiya Mini at one point.