Tuning Engines & Setting Camber

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Today I went to the track with Teemu Leino, who is running onroad for Infinity, and offroad with whatever he wants, which right now is Kyosho. Teemu is usually the fastest, or one of the fastest based on laptimes regardless of what class he is racing. In the last few years he has had the best results in nitro on road, TQing the worlds amongst other things, sometimes lapping unreasonably faster than others. So it’s always good to go testing with Teemu, specially now since he is wheeling the magic Japanese car.

Engine Tuning

Engine tuning is SUPER critical in on road, you have to get the maximum out of your engine, or you won’t win, it’s as simple as that. Today we decided to do something different, so Teemu tuned my engine how he tends to tune his. It’s possible to tune nitro engines so they “work right” in different ways. I tend to tune my engines in a way where the top end is leaner, and the low end is richer. Teemu doesn’t like this because it causes a non liner power delivery, powerful yet smooth low end, and mid to top a peak of power as the motor clears out. So he ended up richening the top end an hour or so, and leaned the low end two hours, as well as lowering the idle as much as needed.

It wasn’t a huge difference, but I did notice that the powerband was smoother, and in the slick conditions I had more forward bite without having to think about it. The power delivery gave me more grip. It was a good experiment, and something to keep in mind, and test more! The harder the track is to drive the better this way of tuning is, that’s my feeling.

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Setting Camber

I have written about camber before somewhere, long story short, on a good car, camber makes a big difference. It seriously can make a nervous or loose car dialed, buy just small adjustments. On the old Yellow Edition camber didn’t make a big difference, this was because the car geometry was so far off, that the tyres were such a short amount of time at the “right angles”. On a good car, such as the Kyosho or the JQ WE, and specially the LV, the reason for camber making such a big difference, is that on one lap, the tyres will spend most of the time at the “right angles”, so this means that any change you make to that angle will make a noticeable difference.

Since it is such a precise setting to get right on a good car, the best way to find the right setting is to drive and make adjustments on the fly, so Teemu drove, and I set his camber. We ended up adding a bit to the rear, which made the car corner more smoothly, with more steering also,  and have smoother rear grip. On the front, at least c-hub cars tend to have one setting which is twitchy, and then add or remove camber from there will make the car smoother to drive, just with a different feel. Less will make it better at low speed, and more will make it better at high speed, roughly speaking. Teemu preferred adding camber from the twitchy point, which is no surprise as his driving style is so aggressive.

At the end of the day Teemu got the best lap by a 10th with 37.1, but I got the faster 5 minute time, for now at least with a 8L 5:01.5.

And then the rain came...

And then the rain came…

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3 thoughts on “Tuning Engines & Setting Camber

  1. Jukka Vatanen says:

    When checking Teemus run a few years ago on the same Lavanko track, it was very “fluid”, not agressive in my mind. He seemed to have the power almost always “on”. His corner speed was much faster than any other drivers. To me he was running “on road style” , where you dont actually brake to corners, but ” slip by them”

  2. […] been focusing on lately, but another way to approach this issue, is to work on your engine tune as I wrote about here, and your clutch. The power delivery can do the work for you, and when you combine a better […]

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