Posted on April 02, 2015
Just like a brand new pair of shoes, a new RC car needs to have the engine broken in before you see it start to perform at its highest level possible. If you have your hands on a brand new nitro engine RC car, breaking in the engine can be a very tricky process and if you do not take your time and do the process correctly, you can destroy the engine before it can get going.
When you are breaking in the engine, you should go through roughly four or five tanks of fuel in the process. Taking your time is key when breaking in the engine and rushing it can be very detrimental to to the car's performance. The biggest key to breaking in the engine is running the car without the body on it in order to allow the most airflow possible through the system. Choose a flat, clean surface for your nitro engine break in process. As you are running your RC car, make sure you vary your speeds throughout the running of the car. You should not run the engine faster than half throttle or keep a steady speed as slowing down and speeding up will help the engine reach its full performance level. With four or five different tanks of fuel, there are different procedures you should follow for each tank.
With the first tank of fuel, take it easy on the throttle, easing into the 1/4 slot for about two seconds. Anything faster or heavier can stall your engine in a flash. When you see smoke from the exhaust, your engine is in good shape and ready for you to run it. Continue giving it the 1/4 of throttle and braking it until you have run out of fuel. On the second tank of fuel, run the engine at half throttle for about two seconds before braking. Be sure to accelerate at an easy and consistent tempo to avoid stalling or burning out the engine. The third tank of fuel will also be ran at the half throttle position, but this time for about three seconds of easy acceleration before applying the break. The fourth tank will let you experience the car's full power, as you should accelerate to full power for three seconds before braking. On the fifth and final tank, you should be accelerating smoothly to full throttle in roughly three seconds before holding it for another two seconds and applying the break.
Breaking in the engine on a nitro RC car can be a long and tedious process, but if it is done correctly, you will get the best possible performance out of the car.