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Why Is My RC Car Pushing In Corners?

If you want to know why your car is pushing in corners keep reading. Also, learn why it may not be going straight sometimes and how to fix understeer.

Why Is My RC Car Pushing In Corners?

Here are the most common reasons for this:

1. Front Tire Conditions

Worn-out tires: One of the main culprits of pushing in corners is front tires that have worn out or are not getting enough grip. If the front tires cannot grip the surface properly, they will not be able to steer the car effectively.

Solution: Regularly check the condition of your tires. If they’re worn out, it might be time to replace them. Also, make sure you’re using the right type of tires for the surface you’re racing on.

2. Suspension Setup

An improper suspension setup can significantly impact how your RC car behaves in corners. If the front shocks are too soft, the front of the car can dip down during acceleration, reducing the grip of the front tires.

Solution: Adjust the front shocks to a harder setting or use thicker shock oil. This will help in keeping the car balanced and ensuring the front tires maintain grip.

3. Weight Distribution

Weight distribution can play a significant role in how your RC car handles corners. If there’s too much weight at the back, the front tires might not have enough downward force to maintain a grip.

Solution: Rebalance the car’s weight. You can move the battery or other components slightly forward, or you can add small weights to the front.

4. Steering Servo Issues

If the servo responsible for steering isn’t functioning correctly, it won’t provide enough turning force.

Solution: Check if the servo is working properly. If not, it might need replacement or adjustment. Ensure the servo horn and linkage are not stripped or damaged.

5. Differential Setup

A differential that’s too loose can lead to understeer, especially if the rear differential is allowing the wheels to spin too freely.

Solution: Tighten the differential or switch to a thicker diff oil. This can improve the balance between front and rear grip.

6. Wheel Alignment

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Incorrect wheel alignment, especially toe settings, can drastically affect steering response.

Solution: Ensure the front wheels have a slight toe-out. This typically helps improve cornering response in most RC cars.

7. Chassis Tweaks

Sometimes, the chassis might be tweaked or slightly bent from impacts or crashes, which can affect its handling.

Solution: Inspect the chassis for any signs of damage. If there’s any bending, try to straighten it out or consider replacing the chassis if the damage is significant.

Why is My RC Car Not Going Straight?

These are the main reasons for this:

1. Wheel Alignment:

The most common reason for an RC car not moving straight is the misalignment of its wheels.

Solution: Check the wheels to ensure they are aligned properly. Many RC cars come with adjustable tie rods which control the toe-in and toe-out of the front wheels. Adjust these rods until the wheels are parallel to each other.

2. Damaged or Worn Out Tires:

Uneven wear or damage to one or more tires can cause the RC car to pull in one direction.

Solution: Inspect all tires for damage or uneven wear. Replace any worn-out or damaged tires. Rotate the tires occasionally to ensure even wear.

3. Damaged Suspension:

A bent or broken suspension component can cause steering problems.

Solution: Examine the suspension closely for any signs of damage. Check for bent shock towers, arms, or other components. Replace any damaged parts.

  1. Steering Trim is Off:

The steering trim on the transmitter allows for minor adjustments to the car’s steering. If it’s not set correctly, the car might not move straight.

Solution: Using the transmitter, adjust the steering trim. Typically, there’s a knob or button labeled “STEERING TRIM” or similar. Adjust it slowly until the car moves straight.

5. Servo Issues:

The servo is responsible for moving the steering mechanism. If it’s malfunctioning, it can cause steering problems.

Solution: Test the servo by turning it left and right using the transmitter. If it’s not responding correctly, you might need to replace it or check its connections.

6. Drivetrain Problems:

Issues in the drivetrain, especially differential problems, can cause an RC car to not drive straight.

Solution: Check the differentials to ensure they’re functioning correctly. Clean and lubricate the gears regularly, and consider replacing them if they’re worn out.

7. Battery Issues:

A weak or dying battery may not provide enough power to the motor, causing inconsistent speeds and direction.

Solution: Charge the battery fully. If the problem persists, test with a new battery.

8. Damaged Chassis:

A warped or bent chassis can result in alignment issues.

Solution: Inspect the chassis for any visible bends or deformities. Depending on the severity, you may need to straighten it or replace it.

9. External Factors:

Sometimes, the environment or the surface on which you’re running the RC car can cause it to veer off track.

Solution: Run the car on a different surface. Ensure that no obstacles or debris are causing the car to change direction.

How Do You Fix the Understeer on an RC Car?

Here are the steps:

1. Check Tire and Wheel Setup

  • Tire Compound: Softer front tires increase grip and can help reduce understeer. Experiment with different tire compounds to find the ideal balance.
  • Tire Pressure: If your RC tires can be inflated, ensure they are set to the optimal pressure. Overinflated front tires can lead to reduced grip.
  • Tire Treads: Ensure the front tires have sufficient tread. Worn-out tires have less grip and can contribute to understeer.

2. Adjust the Suspension

Shock Oil: Using lighter (thinner) shock oil in the front can allow for quicker weight transfer, increasing front grip.

  • Shock Springs: Softer front springs can help the car ‘dip’ forward more during braking and cornering, which can increase front tire traction.
  • Camber Angle: Adjust the camber of the front wheels. A slightly negative camber (top of the tire leaning inwards) can increase the tire’s contact patch during cornering.
  • Ride Height: Lowering the front ride height can shift more weight to the front tires, increasing their grip.

3. Adjust Weight Distribution

Repositioning the weight towards the front of the car can help counter understeer by increasing traction on the front tires. This can be done by:

  • Moving the battery or electronics forward.
  • Adding small amounts of weight to the front bumper or chassis.

4. Re-examine the Differential

A differential that’s too tight or locked in the front can cause an understeer. Consider loosening the front differential or using a more open diff setup.

5. Adjust Steering Settings

  • Dual Rate: Increasing the steering dual rate on your transmitter can give more steering input at full lock.
  • End Points: Ensure that your steering endpoints are properly set up so that the wheels can achieve maximum turning angle.
  • Ackerman: Adjusting the Ackerman setting can alter how much each front wheel turns relative to the other. Experimenting with this can help mitigate understeer.

6. Driving Technique

Sometimes, understeer can be influenced by how the car is driven:

  • Braking: Proper braking techniques, such as braking before entering a turn and accelerating out, can reduce understeer.
  • Throttle Control: Managing throttle inputs can help in maintaining a balance between the front and rear grip.

7. Maintenance and Inspection

Regularly inspect the car for damaged components. Bent or damaged steering parts can inhibit the full range of steering movement, leading to understeer.