Help design the track at Halifax R/C Park

For the 2018 season, we’re planning on re-doing the track layout at Halifax R/C park in Beaver Bank. The winter has appeared to be good to us so we might get started with the project much earlier than before – sometime in April or May. It’s a simple plan: pull up the existing track layout, get some machinery in to grade and do the heavy lifting for any features (jumps, berms), lay the track back down, and then deal with any trouble-spots. (that’s not the end of the project as there’s always the ongoing maintenance throughout the season to deal with!)

Here’s where you guys fit in. Not only will we need hands-on help for laying out the track, but we’re also looking for your input for the layout of the track itself (and anyone – you don’t need to be on any committee to contribute). We have few ideas ourselves for improvements after the learnings we’ve made over the last few years, but a fresh perspective is always welcome. And while we might not end up doing your specific plan, we will consider elements of every submission.

All you need to do is download this pdf blank-plan of the site, print it off, draw on it and send a photo or scan back to us at halifaxrcpark@gmail.com. Simples.

There are however an important list of requirements for you to consider for your track layout submissions:

  1. The width of the track has to exceed 10ft at all points (that gives the 1/8 scale guys some options)
  2. There needs to be enough “green” off-track area for marshals to stand safely and not obstruct the view
  3. Think about how the layout might be to drive from a drivers-perspective. It’s easier to keep a car in the middle of a section of track that you’re looking along than it is for one running side-to-side (i.e. when driving toward and away from you it is easier to position the car for corners and jumps)
  4. We can move the existing drivers mound if required, but unfortunately there will never be a high structure on which to stand. (the bleachers may be re-positioned to give another option for driver location)
  5. Consider a layout that has multiple routes for tracks, particularly a shorter more-simple beginners option for those venturing onto track for the first time would be of benefit to slower and smaller vehicles (1/16 etc).

Below is an example of the plan from 2015, showing the sort of things to consider. But really anything goes at this preliminary stage.

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We’re also starting a specific track-build-and-maintenance committee as part of the Halifax Radio Controlled Park Society who will meet separately to the site-management and R/C promotion side. We’ve already had a few volunteers who are keen to help out with the park design and manual-labor aspects, but we’re always looking for more helpers in whatever capacity you can offer so please get in touch if you’re willing. An email to halifaxrcpark@gmail.com is all we need.

And remember, our Fundraising Raffle is still going on. We’ve sold just over 130 tickets and the draw will happen as one of the the Halifax R/C Park maintenance events in Beaver Bank sometime in April or May.

Track Layout Blank Worksheet

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Fundraising Raffle News – Draw will be in April or May

So even though we haven’t yet sold all 200 of the proposed tickets for our fundraising raffle, we have sold enough tickets (120 so far) to cover our minimum expenses for 2018. Tickets are still available for purchase, but we can confirm that we’ll definitely be performing the draw sometime this spring. Depending upon the weather, the draw will take place at our spring “Work-Party” at the R/C Park in BeaverBank. The mild winter means we can get working on the track earlier than normal this year so keep tuned to www.halifaxrcpark.com for more details on when that will be.

If you would like to purchase one of the remaining tickets for our raffle then please EMT us at halifaxrcpark@gmail.com. It’s $10 per ticket and your odds of winning will be better than 1 in 200. Please follow up any payment with an email to halifaxrcpark@gmail.com with your contact details.

There are five prize options to suit everyone:

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(Almost) The end of the road

During the last HRCP committee meeting we all had a bit of an inward look at whether we’re suceeding in our joint aims to provide (1) a free-to-use Radio Control Car Track at the city owned site in Beaver-Bank, and (2) to promote the hobby of R/C to the public. Funding, rebuilding and more importantly, maintaining the Halifax Radio Control Park has been a big challenge over the last few years. Our small committee has been run ragged trying to keep ontop of the weeds, the puddles, the rocks and the track-marking repair, and that doesn’t consider how hard we’ve been working to get enough money to pay for the annual costs. Keeping the Beaverbank R/C park running is like a three legged stool – without adequate finances, ongoing maintenance, or the annual rebuild, the stool just falls over. It means we need all three just to be able to provide the sort of facility that the local R/C community deserves.

STOOL

We have just enough money in the coffers to cover the $700 of annual insurance we need for 2018, thanks mainly to the people who bought raffle tickets (we’re going to do that draw at the end of April with however many tickets we’ve sold – you can still buy more and currently your odds of winning are 110:1 – not bad at all). But right now 2018 looks like it’s the end of the road for this version of a public free-to-use R/C park. Our hope is that a few of you are willing and energetic enough to join our small committee and take on the responsibility to design, build and maintain the park. Whatever happens, the BeaverBank track will get a spring refresh in 2018 where the track layout will be changed, and some patches filled in but we don’t have enough help on a continuous basis to get it back to the great dirt track we had throughout 2015. It’s a huge site, and there’s certainly scope to make it a great off-road R/C venue with the right sort of resources and support, but from where we sit, the demand locally just doesn’t appear to be there at the moment. If anyone thinks they can revolutionise the site, then please get in touch with us at halifaxrcpark@gmail.com and we can discuss your ideas and how you can come on board and implement them.

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Halifax Radio Control Park in Beaver Bank during 2015

But the track is only part of our aims for the Halifax R/C Park Society. The hobby of radio controlled cars is, as most of you know, a great one. However, it flies under the radar of public knowledge. We want to change that and get more and more people into this wholesome, active and technical hobby. And since there are no big costs associated with having a stand at a public show or event, then we will certainly continue to be present where we can to shout and scream about this amazing hobby. First up is the National Engineering Month Public Display at the Halifax Central Library on March 24th, then a couple of weeks later we’ll have a new display at the Shearwater Spring Hobby Show on April the 7th and 8th. And then hopefully some more shows as the summer goes on. Keep checking here for more details of those events.

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Promotion of R/C to the public is important

This website too is a valuable resource. It has lots of great unbiased information for people thinking of getting into the hobby, or those that have just picked up their first hobby-grade car. And if you’re looking for a local R/C event, then check out our local events calendar. If you’re organizing an R/C event that is open to the public, then we’d like to post about it.  Email us at halifaxrcpark@gmail.com with the details of your event, and we’ll do what we can to get more people to it. On-road, Off-road, Trail, Bashing, etc. there’s nothing R/C related that we won’t get behind.

So while it seems like we might be on the verge of losing a public free-to-use R/C facility in HRM, there’s still a lot of promotion and information you’ll see from the Halifax R/C Park Society to help grow this amazing hobby!

Win an R/C car in our Fundraising Raffle

So we’re just over half-way to our target of selling 200 tickets for our fundraising raffle. Tickets numbered from 102 to 200 are still available (and number 46 too because I can’t count!). In an effort to sell those last 98 tickets we’re going to let you guys choose your ticket numbers for that range. If you think any of those numbers are lucky, then let us know when you send your payment, and we’ll put you’re name on that ticket, otherwise you’ll just be buying the next one in the book.

Tickets are $10 each, and you can win one of five prizes:

To buy a ticket, send an EMT to halifaxrcpark@gmail.com and then a followup email with your contact details. If we don’t reach our target of 200 tickets sold by May 2018, then we’ll be forced to close the Halifax RC Park in BeaverBank and we’ll refund you all your money.

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Keep checking here over the coming weeks for more updates.

Beginner R/C Racing Tips

So there’s lots of great information out there on the internet for newcomers to the R/C racing hobby, but this short video from Jason at Short Course World hits some really important points.

He’s definitely right that top speed isn’t that important – You’re faster when you crash less, and crashing less means practice and starting off slow (plus when you hit stuff, and you will hit stuff, you’re less likely to break stuff if you’re going slower).

Our beginners section has some broad information on the R/C car hobby, but there’s a sub-page on R/C racing too.

There’s work in the background to try and get some more regular racing going at Halifax RC Park this coming year, with the possibility of true lap-times and an organized race-event format (i.e. 5min races, with classes to suit everyone, beginners/kids included). But that all depends upon keeping the facility open in 2018 – we still have lots of tickets for our fundraising raffle.

New Year = Choices….choices…win a $500 gift voucher for Mighty Small Cars

Happy New Year from the Halifax RC Park. Lets hope 2018 is a great year for R/C in HRM and the Maritimes. We’ve sold almost 100 tickets for a our fundraising raffle to help keep Halifax RC Park open for 2018 but that means we’re only halfway to our target. All the details of the raffle and how to enter are in a previous post here. It’s $10 per ticket with a total of 200 tickets.

Over the last few weeks, we’ve gone into detail about the four prize options we pre-selected:

  1. Traxxas Slash Short Course Race Truck RTR (ex battery)
  2. Axial SCX10-2 Trail Truck Kit
  3. A pair of ECX Torment RTR Short Course Trucks
  4. Tamiya TT02B ready-to-build-and-run kit and combo

But there is always the final choice of a $500 gift voucher to Mighty Small Cars in Dartmouth (that’s $435 pre tax if you’re into window shopping). And while you don’t get quite as good a deal going this route, you do get to choose whatever R/C vehicle or R/C accessories you like. Don’t forget that Geoff and his staff over at Mighty Small Cars can order practically anything in for you. You want to use the $500 voucher toward a TLR 22 4.0 2WD race buggy, no problem. What about a top end Futaba radio, sure. Or just a bundle of LiPo batteries, great. So if our pre-selected choices don’t float-your-boat (or run-your-rig!), don’t forget that if you win and you choose the $500 MSC voucher then certainly check with MSC to see what that can order in for you.

This post wraps up our five prize choices for our raffle, but there’s still some way to go before we can actually do the draw after selling 200 tickets. Remember if we haven’t sold all the tickets by May 2018, then we’ll be forced to close the park and refund entry payments. Any questions or suggestions then please email us at halifaxrcpark@gmail.com.

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Choices….choices…win a ready-to-build-and-race, Tamiya TT02B 4WD buggy

Happy Holidays everyone. We’ve sold 86 tickets to our fundraising raffle, so we still have over 100 tickets to sell in order to keep Halifax RC Park open for 2018. Those that have purchased tickets already thank you so much, but remember that you’re welcome to buy more tickets if you’d like to improve your chances of winning.

All the details of the raffle are in a previous post here, but we’d like to further explain the prize options for those that just can’t decide what they’d choose. Last week we discussed winning a pair of ECX Torment Short Course Trucks, and before that the Axial SCX10-2 Trail Truck, and the Traxxas Slash Short Course Race Truck, but this week we’re going for the mechanically inclined newcomer to the R/C hobby who might want to build and then run their own car with a Tamiya TT02B 1/10 4WD Buggy.

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Building a kit of a Tamiya R/C car, and having a hobby shop supply the required combo of radio gear, battery, charger, paint etc, was the conventional way to start the R/C hobby for those of us who’ve been doing R/C for decades. Ready-to-run models didn’t exist so building a kit was the only route in, and Tamiya made the most complete kits with the best assembly manuals. The modern style of RTRs mean you get running quickly but you lose out the huge sense of personal achievement that comes from building a fully functional R/C car from a kit, fitting it out with electronics, painting the body and seeing it speed off down the driveway for the first time.

We’ve chosen one of the more modern and robust versions of Tamiya’s unique R/C cars – the TT02B 4WD buggy platform. There’s three body styles to choose from (L to R below: Plasma Edge II #58630Neo Scorcher #58568 and Dual Ridge #58596) and the hobby shop will include everything you need to get running (a LiPo battery, charger, transmitter, receiver, servo and body paint). There’s a local group (click here) who have started a simple and fun race class for these vehicles called Formula TT02B running mostly box-stock cars. So a raffle winner who chooses this prize can drop straight into this local group.

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Prize 4 – Choice of Tamiya TT02B kit and accessories to get it running.