When it comes to sports and hobbies, RC cars and trucks will always be the ones that come into mind. In fact, it has been a popular past time for most RC enthusiasts since 1966 when the first remote-controlled car, the Ferrari 250LM was created by Elettronica Giocattoli (El-Gi) Electronics Company.
But did you know that the first ever engine model was actually conceived by Nikola Tesla 68 years before the first RC vehicle was ever produced? And how about the glue that is now commonly used for RC parts, did you know that it was originally intended for guns?
These are just some of the cool facts surrounding the world of RCs. And if you wanna know more, then stick around as we are going to share the 10 interesting things you bet ya’ didn’t know about RC cars.
Since an RC car is often subjected to harsh outdoor elements, its parts should be durable and able to withstand any form of “punishment”. Hence, your RC car or truck is made up of silicone-based materials from the shock fluid to the electric wire coverings.
First Conception Of RC Engine
EI-Gi is often hailed as the creator of the first RC car model, but the first person who actually thought of and demonstrated an engine model of an RC was Nikola Tesla, the father of alternating current and the same person who invented the Tesla Coil. His RC model engine was introduced in 1898.
So it’s safe to say that the electronic genius and inventor did invent the RC engine, but was mass produced by Elettronica Giocattoli for public use. That’s why the company is often credited for the creation of this hobby toy.
Even if Hedy Lamarr and George Antheil claimed to have invented the 2.4GHz band, there is no clear evidence that can prove to us who invented it first. But what is interesting about this frequency is that it was once used to enable radio-guided torpedoes to be almost undetectable to enemies.
In addition, the Nomadio Sensor pioneered the use of this RC technology.
The First Wheel-Type Radio
Futaba was the first to invent the wheel-type radio called the Futaba 2F, and the designed was intended for car use only. It was so reliable that a lot of RC hobbyists have immediately switched into it.
The CA or cyanoacrylate glue was originally created for plastic guns sights to be used during WW2 but was eventually rejected. Years later, Fred Joyner and Harry Coover Jr. rediscovered the formulation of CA glue and they manufactured it for commercial use.
Nowadays, aside from common repairs it is also used to ensure strong retention of nuts and bolts of RC cars and RC trucks.
Electronic Speed Control
Novak created the NESC-1 with built-in BEC circuit and was fully electronic. This system was so efficient and reliable that it was sold in the RC market in the 1980’s.
First Monster Truck Models
Eventually, the need for speed is not enough as RC owners became more adventurous in terms of all-terrain/off-road racing. Hence RC trucks were created, and the Marui Big Bear was born. This type of truck has oversized tires, 2WD, and with injection molded body that is capable of running through rough terrains and any other roads which you can’t drive with usual RC car models.
First Nitro RC Car With Reverse
Kyosho gets the credit for introducing the first nitro RC car with reverse function. This line of RC vehicle was called the QRC line and it includes a twin-stacked gear transmission, a 2-channel radio, and a special cam.
Tamiya’s dominance in the RC scene is widely accepted, but before they became popular the company produced miniature plastic models of cars, ships, airplanes, and even people. It was only in 1976 when they began manufacturing their first RC car model, the 1/12 Porsche 934 which was derived from an actual Porsche 911 car!
Aside from that, the company was also the first to introduce RC cars with a 3-gear transmission. This model was named the Rough Rider, and it was released in 1979.