Grip in rc drag racing

Creating maximum grip fot you`re rc dragster is one of the biggest problems in rc drag racing. A fast dragster weighs only 1.2 kg and must be so powerfull that it maneges to get at top speed within 2 seconds on the dragstrip. Only if this happens you can run top times.

Important to maximize the grip are:

- Weight distribution
- Tyres (type / material)
- Tire preparation
- Wings
- Surface / dragstrip


In general, great care must be taken when building the dragster itself. Creating maximum grip must already be considered during construction. Get as much weight as possible on the rear end and keep the center of gravity as low as possible to maximize stability. Too much weight on the rear axle is automatically compensated by a wheelie bar. A weight ratio of 20 to / 80 front / rear is not strange at all.

Rc drag Tires

Most rc drag racers prefer foam tires. The reason is that rubber tires have the best grip when thay somewhat slip while there is a lot of pressure is exerted by the weight of the car. Because this creates heat which brings the rubber on the verge of melting. Foam tires don`t have this feature. If they are clean and tidy trued they will have a higher grip without slipping and melting.

Tires preparation

To give foam tires more grip there are several products on the market. The most famous home, garden and kitchen product is WD40. When it is sprayed on the foam tires they are degreased and cleaned very well. The structure of the foam gets as open as possible. After about 5 minutes to absorbing you wipe the tires and you might notice that they feel much stiffer / rubbery.

Grip creeren met traction compound

The same can be reached with some traction fluids, specially made for this purpose.
For some substances, we have placed a link on the page “dragrace brands”. Special remedies / traction fluids in addition ad to the cleaning effect and opening the pores that thay make foam tires sticky. The downside of course is that the strip must be very clean.

Some brands with names of traction fluids are:

- Koford: light / medium / heavy / drag glue
- SXT: Racing 2.0 Rubber Tire Traction Compound (Asphalt) / 3.0 foam (Rubber Tire Traction Compound)
- Team Trinity "Tire Tweak": Foam Tire Traction Compound
- Team Trinity: Bleu dot / red dot / green dot / buggy grip
- Stick ET (extra traction): Tire traction compound
- Team Trinity: Sticky Fingers
- Much more: Foam Nano / Nano Asphalt
- Parma: pink tire traction compound
- Corrally: Jack the Gripper
- Paul Lemieux: Liquid Gravity Traction Tire

Wings on a rc dragster

Wings can dramatically increase the grip when they are large enough, in the right place and mounted in the right corner. Obviously, they only have a function at higher speeds. A good wing is at an angle of approximately 15 degrees and placed behind the rear axle on an inclined bracket. Below`s "child's drawing" reflects the basic`s and shows the forces at work.

Principle of wings on a dragster

Wings on a dragster

The blue line shows the wind on both the front and rear wing touching and pushing with force in red lines. The wind that touches the rear wing to pushes back and down. The downward pressure is used directly and provides better grip. The pressure that pushes against the car can also be used partially. The wing is placed on a slanted bracket to transfer the backward force obliquely on the chassis as a force pressing and will try to use the axle as a pivot to lift the nose. Because of the weight of the chassis and downforce of the wing on the front there will be even more weight on the rear axle. The forces on the wing at the front make it harder to lift the chassis and thus contribute to the pressure on the rear axle. Only when the rear wing does his job so well that it, in combination with other upward forces, creates so much grip that the front is lifted, it is useful to place a wheelie bar.


The key for a good grip is the dragstrip itself. Every rc track racer will be able to tell that dirt or dust on the track is the biggest killer for good grip. A clean dragstrip is an absolute must. Wipe or blow it clean before you even consider good grip. Then prepare (at least) the first 10 meters by spraying with sugar water or lemonade. This is easiest bringing a portable weed sprayer. The weed sprayer can be filled with sugar water or cheap syrup-based lemonade.
Allow the liquid to dry equally and spray again if necessary, until the surface is slightly sticky.

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