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Definition: The process of running a new RC vehicle at varying speeds and not initially at full-speed is called break-in. When you first get a new RC vehicle it needs to be tested out gently before running it full out. This is especially true of a new nitro engine.

Break-in To Avoid Breakdowns

Proper nitro engine break-in is critical for long-lasting performance of your RC. Every new nitro engine should undergo a break-in procedure. Breaking in a nitro engine takes anywhere from one to two hours and about 3-5 tanks of nitro fuel. If you do the nitro engine break-in properly, the up-keep on your RC vehicle is less costly than if the procedure is done hastily and incorrectly. Be patient. Even after the initial break-in, it may take running through an additional 5 or more tanks of fuel before the engine reaches its full operating potential.

Each nitro engine manufacturer may offer specific break-in procedures, but this general nitro engine break-in procedure works well if you don't have other instructions.

Electric Motor Break-in

Although less involved, even electric RCs benefit from a break-in period where you run the electric motor at 1/4 to 1/2 power for 5 minutes or so. This can be done with the vehicle on a stand, tires off the ground and should be done with a new motor and anytime you change the brushes in an electric brushed motor.
Also Known As: breaking in
RC Terms Related to Break-in

Tina Samuels
About.com Radio Controlled Vehicles

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