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Simple Guide to Build Your Own Backyard RC Track (2023)

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how to build an rc trackYou’re the King of the Track with your souped-up RC monster, but ruling over a pile of dirt in the backyard is barely a taste of the power you could wield. What your realm needs is a custom-built course as treacherous as your driving skills.

We’re talking jumps to launch you into the stratosphere, curves to test your grip, and obstacles to separate the newbies from the RC Gods.

This track will be your proving ground and pathway to total dominion over the backyard. Don’t waste another minute driving circles in the grass – it’s time to transform your space into a professional racetrack that rivals anything you’ve seen on TV.

Follow this guide to design, build, and rule over your own supreme RC playground in just a few days. When you’re flying through the air and leaving opponents in the dust, you’ll know exactly how it feels to be King.

Key Takeaways

  • Clear and level the area
  • Install perimeter drainage
  • Build banking for turns
  • Design a track layout

Prepare the Site

Prepare the Site
After scouting the best spot behind the house, you’ll grab your tools and start ripping up the weeds to prep the site for the raceway. Clear an area just over 20ft x 20ft for your track size. Use a pickaxe to aggressively remove the turf and weeds and roots.

Level the exposed dirt with a rake for a smooth surface. Proper drainage is key, so install 4-inch PVC drain pipes around the perimeter. Bank the turns using stacked lumber at least 2-3 levels high. Add spectator seating like hay bales or benches.

With the site prepped, you’re ready to lay down your track surface material and start building your dream raceway. Racing is as much about the atmosphere as the driving, so create an exciting backyard track with jumps, timing system, and room for friends.

Design the Track

Design the Track
You’ve gotta get creative and sketch out a fun track layout that pushes your driving skills to the limit. Visualize broad turns and roped barriers to keep your RC car on a smooth surface marked with painted lines.

Shape the dirt or sand into slope banking for cornering grip. Scale your track size and add jumps to match your car’s speed and suspension travel. Stake down corrugated pipes to form the base of your turns. Stack levels of sandbags to build up banking turns.

Leave wide lanes between barriers for side-by-side racing. Add steep jumps and tricky roller sections to challenge your control. Building a technical track takes planning but yields endless hours of competitive fun.

Add Jumps and Obstacles

Add Jumps and Obstacles
With the outline in place, it’s time to spice things up and challenge your driving skills. Start simple by molding small dirt jumps in straight sections to launch your car and get air. For extra risk, dig out the middle to create a gap jump. Stack plywood at different angles as ramps for bigger air and to vary the launch angle.

Place obstacles like cones and bricks to weave through. Try out some banked corners using angled plywood to test handling at higher speeds.

And don’t forget the essence of RC racing – competition with friends! Set up start/finish lines and a scoring system to race others on your track.

  • Mold small dirt jumps in straight sections
  • Create gap jumps by digging out the middle of jumps
  • Use plywood ramps at different angles for bigger air
  • Add cones, bricks, etc as obstacles to weave through

Build It Up

Build It Up
Now design banks with wood and dirt to add challenging contours. You can build up the track and create elevation changes using lumber and soil.

Start by outlining the banks with stacked 4×4 posts and 2x4s. Secure them in place by hammering 1 ft metal rebar stakes into the ground.

Shovel dirt behind the wood to create sloped banks and hills. Use a tamper to pack down the soil tightly and prevent erosion. Consider placing 4-inch PVC drainage pipes underneath to allow water flow and prevent puddling.

The banks set the stage for jumps and ramps to go over gaps. Crafting a good base takes time but unlocks options to build an exciting multi-level track.

Details and Racing

Details and Racing
Add ‘No Prep’ spray glue to the track for increased traction during races. You’ll want to incorporate sharp corners and long straights in your track design to allow for controlled slides around tight bends.

Use PVC stakes and piled dirt for jumps that launch like a backyard roller coaster.

The key is mapping out a layout with features that test driving skills – patches of astroturf, gaps in jumps, and alternate routes. Refine the blueprint until it balances speed, traction, and excitement without compromising car handling.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What size/scale RC cars can the track accommodate? Knowing the vehicle specs will determine track width and obstacle dimensions.

You’ll want to design your track with 1/10 to 1/8 scale RC cars in mind. Their wheelbases typically range from 9 to 12 inches, so aim for 5 to 7-foot-wide lanes with 12 to 18-inch-wide jumps to accommodate most hobby-grade models.

The more power and suspension travel your cars have, the bigger obstacles they can handle.

What surface is best for an RC track – dirt, grass, pavement? Each has pros and cons for traction, durability, and drainage.

For best traction, paved surfaces work great, but dirt is more forgiving when learning. Grass requires frequent mowing and has poor drainage. Opt for pavement or packed dirt based on your budget, goals, and space.

How much space is needed for a good RC track? Length and width requirements depend on track layout complexity.

You’ll need around 20 ft x 20 ft of flat, clear space for a basic track layout. Go bigger if you want high-speed straights, big jumps, and complex corners. Scale the space to match the size and speed of your RC car. Test-drive to refine the design before fully building.

What tools are required to build various track features? Shovels, rakes, levels, drills and more may be needed.

You’ll need shovels and rakes for shaping jumps, a tamper and 4x4s for creating solid foundations, levels and tape measures for precision, a drill with various bits for fastening materials together, gloves for protecting your hands, goggles for eye safety, and a wheelbarrow for hauling dirt and materials around the track site.

What maintenance is required after the track is built? Weathering, erosion, and use will require occasional repairs and feature rebuilding.

You’ll need to routinely check your track and make repairs. Weather and use will degrade jumps, requiring rebuilding. Occasionally realign track edges, fill holes, and tamp surfaces. Tire skids will scuff transitions, so resurface with new dirt regularly.


Ultimately, you’ll gain immense satisfaction from planning and building your own backyard RC track. With some preparation, design, materials, and elbow grease, you’ll have a custom track to race, jump, and push your RC skills and vehicles to the limit.

Building your own how-to RC track enables you to maximize the capabilities of your RC cars and brings the excitement of competitive RC racing right to your backyard.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is a published author and software engineer and agriculture expert from the US. To date, he has helped thousands of people make their yards lush and thick.