Once upon a time in Germany, there was a young man (me), who just finished his 3 1/2 years education as precision mechanic at the well known Company PHILIPS Semiconductors. The future was bright, we had the beginning of the amazing 90´s and he was really obsessed with RC Cars. The dicision to make that education was simply to make own rc car parts and stuff. This is a true story this time - no other dimension. No parallel universe. No fantasy cars!
I remember, I was the first person in my first year of educations, who occupied the CNC milling machine. I learned by myself how to write the programs for parts long before the other guys of my cohort. Of course I made rc car parts! I was one of the better apprentices. I learned fast to use machines and made a pretty good job overall. So my trainer was happy with me and gave me some extra time to make my own parts - as a part of my education. I am very grateful for this time!
I was totally focussed in racing. We tried to go racing as often as possible. Nearly every weekend. There was nothing else in my head.
1991 we saw the first pictures of the Team Associated Stealth car from Masami Hirosaka at the World Championships. And I remember, who exciting this car looked. A 2WD buggy with a carbon chassis and super long suspension arms. And the look was absolutely amazing for us! But it was pretty clear, they never would release such a car. Then the Team Associated RC10T came out! And this one had some pretty long arms. I ordered the arms and took dimensions. One day later I finished the complete drawings for a whole car. The VITEC 2WD prototype was born - at least on paper!
Some weeks later I was on a 1:12 race in the fresh united Berlin and met one of my old RC friends Ralf Krause, a brilliant 1:12 and PRO10 racer with many great national and international wins under his belt. From my memories, we usually went together with another 1:12 legend and Keil-guy Martin Fließbach and some other drivers after the saturday training in the next club in town to have some fun until the late night.
I showed Ralf my drawings and asked him, if he want to race it next season. He inspected the drawings and agreed with me. This was the day, I owned my first team driver. I was 20 years old and had a bunch of drawings and a vision to make my own car.
3 months later the car was completed. I found a carbon fibre manufacturer, who was able to make a carbon fibre sheet with 25 degrees kick up, what I cutted by my hands. My education time was finished and I had to find a job in another PHILIPS plant, where I was in the quality control. There was no workshop with machines and no chance to make some parts for myself. So I worked on the prototype at home in my room. All parts were made by my hands, a saw, some different files and a hand drill. Not really ideal to make precise parts. But to work with only your hands is possible! And I managed to make a good quality. All parts fitted together perfectly.
Once the car was completed, the very first race was 2 weeks later in Burgdorf/Germany. I send Ralf the car to Berlin and he only had to install his electronics and paint the body. Everything just in time!
And here it is! The VITEC 2WD V1 - at the very first outing in Burgdorf/Germany.
Does it look different to the pictures above? Yes! Because it´s the V1 version. I wanted to tell the story from the very first beginning and the V1 was the first version. The main difference is the front bulkhead and a little different chassis design. The V1 had a front bulkhead milled from a piece of Nylon. Of course the inspiration was Masami´s Stealth car. For some reasons I managed to install the ultra long suspension arms into this chassis. You also see the very long wheelbase. The race was one of germanys nationals races, with many racers and some of the top drivers of Germany.
This young fellow is me. Bringing Ralfs VITEC to the starting grid at the Burgdorf track. The guys behind me were my rc friends and all of them become very successful drivers some years later.
To make it short, we made a great second place at this very first race. No testing, nothing. The race was the first test - and some people were very surprised.
Ralf Krause raced this car the whole season and was always one of the top guys in the 1991 season in Germany. I personally never had the chance to drive it my myself.
1992 - the year of the V2 version
After a year of driving the V1 car, I decided to make a updated version - only a few weeks until the German Championships 1992. The main difference was the front bulkhead design and a shorter wheelbase. So I made new drawings. My situation was not better. No machines to manufacture parts. So I ask my old trainer at PHILIPS, if they can do it in the huge PHILIPS machining workshop in Hamburg/Germany. And he agreed to make it for me. So they milled a beautiful one piece aluminium front bulkhead and some other parts for me. So if you bought a PHILIPS shaver, radio, or lights, you probably paid a little bit from your money into my project. Thanks!
The VITEC 2WD V2 - the cars was finished 3 days before the German Championships 1992. And again - no time for testing. Just send it!
Ralf just won the PRO 10 EFRA European Championships that year. I made this pictures from the German Championships. The funny thing was, that many people did not believe me, that I made this car. Others came and asked us, if this thing is the VITEC from the United States. We told them, it is from us - from Germany. But they simply did not believed it.
Ralf managed it to bring the car into the B-final and ended as 13th. We had some set-up issues and the handling was not perfect for the very slippery dirt track there. And to find a good set-up from zero to hero within only one day with a brand new prototype was very optimistic. Anyway, we had a great time over the weekend with many loughs and fun and absolutely no presure. Good times! Thank you Ralf, for the great time with you! It really was fun!
1993 I ended my rc career and become cycle messenger for the next 6 years in my town Hamburg/Germany. Another part of life. Another story. I came back in RC in 1999 - and I never expected, that the experience with the VITEC project made a big impact in my carreer as RC car designer, many years later.
These were the last pieces of the VITEC 2WD, what I had in a box since exactly 30 years. It looks, that I changes the arms into the newer generation RC10T arms in black material. Not much left over. I made so many other vintage projects, but this one I never touched since then.
All looks a bit dirty and lost.
The rear end with the original V1 version inner suspension mounts.
The front bulkhead have seen better times 30 years ago.
Not a nice view. Bring me back to the box, I can hear.
But it was time to do something after 30 years - the 30th annual anniversary of the VITEC
So I brought it back in the old shape - with some updates.
Enjoy the pictures - after a long restauration and work.
And it looks better, than ever before!
I want to race the VITEC!
Rear suspension details. Reedy 13.5T motor for vintage racing.
B4 slipper unit.
Modern Sub-C cells with fake decals looking good.
Futaba Servo and RC10T bell cranks. The sticker shows the shock oil thickness.
I made some optimized shock tower replicas for front and rear.
The massive milled aluminium front bulkhead with anti roll bar.
Front unit from below.
Without the Yokomo wheels you see the long legs of the Team Associated RC10T.
The suspension works absolutely amazingly smooth.
What a beautiful thing.
I had to narrow the Yokomo rear hub a little to make it fit.
The battery holder. Battery slots are not fun to make.
LRP NiMh Sub-C cells with fake decals/heat shrink looks so good now.
At the end, I am so happy to get it right in the year 2021 - 30 years after it´s first birth. It shows me to never give up your dreams - even if life goes different ways for a while. Your dreams will bring you back on track. Thanks for reading!