If you want to enjoy driving and racing your RC, you really need to take good care of your RC tires. Being an RC enthusiast myself, I was thinking about why RC tires crack, how to keep RC tires from cracking, and other related things.
So I did the best possible research I could to know about all of them and now I’m pretty excited to share with you everything I learned. Continue reading till the end if you are serious about your RC tires!
RC Tire Basics You Need To Know
Before we move forward and discuss more on RC tire cracking, it is important to be aware of some RC tire basics.
One important difference between RC tires and bicycle or car tires is that the RC tires are not designed in a way to be inflated. Instead, RC tires are supported by foam inserts.
The RC foam insert can play an important role in how your RC tires perform. Here are some RC foam types:
|Regular Foams:||Moulded Foams:||Dual Staged Foams:|
|Generally comes from the manufacturer and good especially if you are a beginner||Expensive, Reusable and allows the tires to work to their full potential.||Suitable for Bumpy terrain comes with a soft center and firm edges.|
Another key thing to note is that the RC tires are glued to the rims. The tires would spin on the rims and thus cause speed loss if they weren’t glued to the rim.
Now let’s talk about why the RC tires actually crack.
Why Do RC Tires Crack?
As a general rule, RC tires crack because of the degradation over time as they age, due to exposure to UV lights, extreme temperature, and exposure to some chemicals. However, proper care and maintenance can prevent the early cracking in RC tires.
With that being said, let’s see one by one each of the reasons that can cause the RC Tire to crack:
#1. Degradation With Age
Generally, RC tires are made from rubbers. And as with any rubber tire, they tend to degrade as they age.
It is important to note that RC tires just like regular tires have a shelf life. In other words, you can use your RC tires and enjoy their full potential for only a certain period of time after which the tires will start getting worn out.
If you want to know how long the RC tires last, I would highly encourage you to check out my complete article on how long the RC tires last and how to maintain them.
As the tires will start ageing, they will begin to rot eventually and start developing cracks.
Even though if we take great care, the compounds of the rubber tires will eventually start breaking down and you will start noticing some type of cracking condition.
However, tire cracking can get accelerated if they are exposed to unfavourable conditions. So it becomes important to take good care of your RC tires.
#2. UV Exposure
RC tires can also get cracked if exposed to too many UV rays.
Actually, what happens is when we expose our RC tire to sunlight and specifically direct sunlight for a long time, the UV rays in the sunlight can dry out and break down the components of the rubber. As a result, our tires can crack.
#3. Extreme Temperature
Another reason why our RC tires can crack is when we expose them to extreme heat or cold. Winters that are long and cold can make the tires become brittle and crack.
So it is important to inspect your tires, especially in cold weather.
Also Read: How To Break In RC Crawler Tires?
#4. Chemical Exposure
RC tires can also crack if they get exposed to some chemicals. So it is important to not use inappropriate chemicals on your tires and also whenever you use chemicals make sure that it is not harmful to the tires.
In general, RC tires are made of rubber or plastic and both are subject to dry and crack. In the case of rubber RC Tires, they go soft, swell a bit and lose the sidewall detail. They also tend to craze in a traditional rubber perishing pattern.
On the other hand, plastic RC tires can get cracked in a larger and more random pattern.
How Do I Keep RC Tires From Cracking?
Here’s how you can keep RC tires from cracking:
- Make sure that the tire is cleaned and dried properly
- Inspect, repair any tears and glue the cracks if needed
- Soak the tires with glycerine as per the needs
- Avoiding chemicals and environmental damage to the tires
- Store the tires in the right way
Let’s discuss each of the above-mentioned tips in detail:
#1. Cleaning and Drying RC Tires
In order to prevent crack and also to stop your tires from drying out, you need to clean RC tires and soak them in warm water to loosen the dryness.
Then, you can scrub the RC tire from both inside and outside of the tires to remove all the dirt. This way not only your tire will look nice but also you can easily inspect if there is an early crack or fault on your RC tires.
After cleaning and scrubbing, you should rinse your RC tires thoroughly and finally allow them to dry out naturally.
#2. Inspecting, Repairing & Gluing
Inspecting your RC tires often also becomes important so that you can find any issue with your tire early on and repair it before it becomes unrepairable.
If you notice any tears then you should repair them. You can use glue to cover up the cracks. Generally, super glue is the obvious choice to rebond the cracks. But you can also choose something that lasts long such as a flexible variety of super glue or rubber glue.
While glueing, remember that first, you need to prepare the edge of any cracks by gently roughening with a small file or a piece of wet and dry paper.
Moreover, you also need to make sure that you don’t apply more glue than that is actually needed to repair the crack. You can use a pin to apply small amounts of glue to the crack carefully.
#3. Soaking With Glycerine
In general, glycerine is nothing but a moisturizer. Once you clean, dry, glue and cure your tires, means as all the repairing is done, you can soak the tires in glycerine.
You might notice that at first, the tires are repelling the glycerine in places. However, after two to three days they will start absorbing it.
#4. Avoiding Chemical And Environmental Damage
As said, some chemicals can damage your tires. So make sure to avoid harmful chemicals and only use those that you are sure for being completely safe for your tires.
Also, since extreme temperatures can be harmful to your tires, make sure that your RC tire doesn’t get damaged because of any environmental changes.
#5. Properly Storing The Tires
Storing the tires properly is also crucial. Make sure that the tire doesn’t get exposed to too much direct sunlight, and try to keep it in a place where the temperature doesn’t reach extreme points.
One important thing to also consider is to keep your tires elevated so that the weight is taken off the tires.
How Do You Fix Flat Spots On RC Tires?
To fix the flat spots on RC tires you can stuff the inner void with foam. Alternatively, you can also fill in glue and then leave the tire in its original shape between two heavy objects that can apply pressure to the tire for some time and allow the tire to regain its natural circular shape.
If you want to know how to fix flat spots on tires using the glue option then please watch this video:
Does Gorilla Glue Work On RC Tires?
As a general rule, Gorilla Glue does work well on RC tires and in fact, it is a strong glue. Gorilla glue is one of the popular types of glue that most people use for their various projects and yes it can also be used for RC tires.
Now if you are wondering which glue will be best for your RC tire then I would like to point out that basically, any type of superglue or CA (cyanoacrylate) will be just good.
By the way, if you want to know about whether or not you can reglue your RC tires, I would encourage you to have a look at my complete article about can you reglue RC Tires.
So in short, RC tires can get cracks because of the ageing of tires, UV or chemical exposure, and extreme temperatures. Cleaning the tires, inspecting and repairing any cracks, soaking, glueing, properly storing, and doing all the required maintenance can help in keeping and preventing the RC tires from cracking.
If your RC tire crack can be repaired then it’s okay. However, if the tire condition is very bad and worn out already then it might be a good idea to replace it with a brand new tire.
That’s it! I hope now you have got the answers to all your questions regarding the RC tires cracking. Now I would also recommend you to have a look at my article on why we punch holes in RC tires in case you are interested to know about it. Thanks!