We race GT12 Tamiya Mini Touring Cars LMP12 on Sunday at Barley Mow Village Hall

Who we are and what we do.

We race electric radio-controlled model racing cars.

Racing at Barley Mow is very competitive and friendly. We have members who race at the highest level in UK, European and World Championship events so the experience and help you can draw upon could not be any better.

RC racing caters for people from all backgrounds and doesn’t discriminate on sex, age, or disability. 

We welcome drivers of all abilities and experience.

Our race classes

We race four primary classes at Barley Mow – each running to a standard set of rules.

Our main class at Barley Mow. 

These are 1/12th scale cars, built to resemble GT racers or touring cars and running to standard BRCA rules. This class is specifically designed to promote fast, close racing at a moderate cost.

Build and set up are relatively simple, and the cars themselves are readily available, both new and second hand.

Easy to run, difficult to master.

SchumacherZen Racing and Mardave are the main manufacturers of these cars.

The Tamiya and Mini class encompasses a number of different types of RC racer.

Primarily based around the Tamiya M05/M03 chassis, but can also include touring cars.

This class tends to use stock brushed motors, rubber tyres and 2s LiPo battery packs to keep costs as low as possible.

The class is fun, frantic and ideal for entry level racers. 

Manufacturers include TamiyaMardave and Hobbyking 

Mini Tourning Cars are a cheap entry class where the costs are kept low with stock equipment.

There are several types of Mini Touring Car available, from manufacturers such as Carten, Xpress and MRage.

This class uses stock speed controllers and 17.5t brushless motors from a set list, rubber tyres and 2s LiPo battery packs to keep costs as low as possible.

The class is fast and competitve, with clubs all over the country joining in the fun.

We also race LMP class cars. 

These are also 1/12th scale, and are considered to be the fastest electric racing class. 

LMP cars trace their roots back to the 1970s in the UK and the current cars are lightweight racers built from carbon fibre, aircraft grade alloys and titanium.

The class is highly competitive, with exacting standards of set up and build.

These cars can be a handful – especially when ran with “modified” motors.

Manufacturers include SchumacherCapricornCorallyAssociated and Roche.

Club facilities and location

Our home at Barley Mow Village Hall boasts superb facilities for RC racing and is host to many different community groups and activities.

Parking is available directly outside the hall, with level access to the building.

We have a full range of facilities on site including a kitchen where racers can make tea / coffee, as well as toilet and washroom facilities.  

A vending machine for soft drinks is available to all racers. 

We race on a 25mx14m track using PrimaFelt race carpet. 

Track design is normally a fast open flowing circuit, with markers made from robust white piping and raised markers.  A raised stage area in the main hall is our drivers rostrum providing a good view of the track, accomodating up to 8 racers.

We have a well lit pit area with tables and chairs. 240v mains power is provided.

Keeping track of lap times and race positions is tough in events as fast as RC races. The tech we use is the same as in F1, Karting and MotoGP!

We use an AMB automated timing system optimized for radio controlled vehicle racing.  

All vehicles on the track are equipped with transponders to identify the racer and record their results. Our lapcounting system picks up the signal from the transponder on a loop under the carpet.  

Custom software sorts the cars and displays the results, down to hundredths of a second.

A small, but comprehensively stocked club shop supports racers at every meeting.

We have a selection of essential parts and spares in stock for GT12 and LMP cars, including:

  • JFT tyres
  • Tyre additive
  • Body shells
  • Spares and parts for Zen and Mardave, as well as other kits
  • Electrical spares such as wiring and connectors
  • Tape and adhesives
  • Pinions and spur gears
  • Suspension parts such as wishbones and front blocks
  • Ride height adjusters Bearings, body posts and other common parts  

Kits, motors, tools and electronics are available to order from various manufacturers on request for club members.

Contact Peter Angus at the club

Our location and race times

Barley Mow Village Hall is just off Vigo Lane in Birtley.

Click on the map for directions, or satnav users can enter DH3 2AJ

Doors open around 1645 every Sunday, with our track usually laid by 1730, giving anyone that wants or needs it, 30mins practice or set up time.

First heats are on the line at 1800, we aim to finish at 2130

 

Membership of BMRCC and race rules​

BMRCC is a BRCA affiliated club.

We are committed to providing safe and competitive racing – in line with the requirements of the BRCA and our hosts at Barley Mow Village Hall.

Our race rules are relatively simple.

  • Use of LiPo bags is mandatory during charging and discharging of batteries.
  • Pit towels or table covers should be used.
  • Run to BRCA standard class rules – or in the case of Tamiya, keep it to torque tuned brushed motors, 7.2v nicad batteries and simple speed controllers.
  • Members are expected to help with track set up and tear down.
  • Keep the racing and qualifying as clean as possible – let the faster cars through.  We try to match drivers of similar ability together to keep things simple.
  • Qualifying is qualifying against the clock – you are not racing!
  • Marshall the session after yours unless instructed otherwise.
  • Be nice! It’s only model car racing.

Race fees are currently £6 per Sunday race session.

We have an annual membership fee of £10 for senior members, and £5 for juniors.  Family memberships are £15.

BMRCCC and Barley Mow Village Hall require all members to obtain a BRCA race licence within a month of joining. 

This protects both you and the club / hall with insurance and allows you to compete in national and regional events.

Technical - the car and race kit

A modern GT12 or LMP12 car is relatively simple chassis-wise, when compared to a 4 wheel drive off road buggy or touring car.

The main differences are in the suspension and drive train, with GT12 and LMP cars using a solid back axle, with a ball differential, rather than the independant suspension of other classes.

The Zen RX GT12 pictured is typical of the layout and style of a modern “pan” chassis car, and the basic layout has not changed since the 1970s when the “pan” car was first introduced.  Electronics, batteries, motors and speed controllers have advanced significantly since then!

Carbon fibre and aircraft grade alloys are used for structural parts to reduce weight and improve performance.

Cars and race kit are all available readily both new and second hand.

Ask before you buy – we could save you money!

The GT12 car - what's under the shell?

Foam tyres in various hardnesses are used in conjunction with softening additives to provide the right amount of grip for your driving style and the track conditions.  For both GT12 and LMP12, tyres are one of the major performance factors – just like the real thing!

Control tyres are also used for club competitions on occasion.

GT12 cars have simple spring based independent front suspension and a floating ‘pod’ type rear suspension.

This is tuneable to suit track conditions and grip levels.

Damper rods are used to control chassis movement. 

The ride height of the car is fully adjustable to compensate for tyre wear.

Gearing is adjustable for both the axle (spur) gear and the motor (pinion) gear to maximise performance on each track and combination of equipment. 

GT12 cars use 48dp gears and pinions to get the power down. 

A ball differential helps to give sharp handling and turning characteristics.

A brushless 540 13.5t motor is the club and BRCA standard. RC car motors are sensored, in that they have an additional cable to the speed controller to improve performance. Motors are tuneable and have a limited range of adjustment.  

This R1 Wurks 13.5t motor is typical of a current high performance motor used at the club and in competition.

Motors are commonly available both new and second hand – ask at the club for advice before you buy!

GT12 racers use a 1S hard shell LiPo battery pack, with a nominal voltage of 3.7v.

These range from £20 to £90 each new and can be charged many times with a specialist charger. Second hand LiPo battery packs are often available and are a good starting place.

We recommend a minimum of two packs for a race night.

At the heart of the car, the speed controller converts the radio reciever outputs to control the motor. 

A typical speed controller like this Hobbywing XR10 is designed for use with 1s LiPo, can be set for forward and braking only, plus a range of adjustment.  Speed controllers can be adjusted using a plug in box that can alter the performance or braking characteristics.  Some even provide a degree of data logging.

The speed controller also supplies power to the steering servo and reciever, as well as ancillary items such as the transponder and cooling fans.

We recommend using a controller specifically designed for a 1S LiPo pack, and that has a ‘blinky’ mode – meaning it is BRCA approved for racing.

At the front of the car, the servo translates the radio reciever outputs to move the wheels and steer the car. 

Suitable servos range from around £20 to £100 and can often be found second hand.

A “servo saver” is attached between the steering arms and the servo output, giving a degree of protection to the gearing within the servo case.

 

The reciever is a small unit which understands the commands given over the air by the control unit, or transmitter. 

99% of racers use a digital, 2.4ghz transmitter and reciever, eliminating the need for frequency changes or crystals.

The transponder is a small box that communicates with a timing loop under the carpet.

This can be provided by the club at a cost of around £40.

What else is needed to race?

A number of other items are needed to race and maintain your RC car.  Some are more critical than others and most are available in hobby and model shops, amazon or even your local DIY store. 

Specialist tools can be bought online, or ordered at the club shop.

A radio transmitter works alongside the reciever unit – changing your inputs of throttle and steering into movement of the car. 

Most common is a ‘combo’ unit – transmitter and reciever together from around £40 to several hundred, depending on features. 

Two types are commonly used – sticks and steering wheel.

Stick sets are the traditional RC handset that most are used to seeing. Steer wheel sets are gun shaped and use a throttle trigger with a side wheel. Personal preference is how most decide which to use.

99% of racers use a 2.4GHz transmitter and reciever – which need no frequency changes to use alongside other racers.

To safely charge LiPo batteries it is essential to use a dedicated charger designed for charging RC LiPo batteries. 

LiPo batteries are safe and reliable when correctly charged and maintained, but can pose a risk if mistreated. 

Chargers are available from around £25 and are typically powered with a regulated 12v power supply or car battery. 

LiPo charge bags are available from the Club shop, RC shops, eBay and Amazon and are mandatory when charging at club.

A selection of simple hand tools is all that is needed to maintain your car.

Many can be purchased from normal DIY stores or Amazon.

As with any hobby, there are a myriad of specialist tools that can be bought, but its best to start with basics and buy as you need them. If you need something on a race night – most racers will help you out until you get your own.

Essentials

Allen drivers – 1.5mm, 2mm and 2.5mm .

5.5mm and 7mm nut drivers or a box wrench

Small pliers

Small side cutters.

Soldering iron – used for changing motors, connecting speed controllers etc

A pit box or hauler is useful to put it all in!

Specialist

Ride height gauge – a small wedge to measure chassis height

Vernier calipers – used to measure tyre sizes for gearing

Digital volt meter or battery tester

Tyre truer – a small lathe for sizing and cutting foam tyres