Tiny Truck Nerd – Q&A With GCM Racing’s Chris Robinson

Tiny Truck Nerd – Q&A With GCM Racing’s Chris Robinson

It’s not secret that scale crawlers are all the rage right now in the RC universe. With their trail crawling prowess and incredibly detailed look, what’s not to like? If you’re a scale and trail fan like we are, you’re probably a fan of GCM Racing too. GCM manufactures scale trucks and components for custom RC builders. The Canadian company is run by Chris Robinson, a self-professed life long RC freak. Chris’ duties involve 3D design, product development, machining as well as planning and running events for tiny truckers as well. We recently got a chance to sit down with Chris to find out
more about GCM and pick his brain about all things RC and tiny trucks.

RCCA: How did GCM Racing get started?

CR: It started with frustration! Seriously! We were running monster trucks in the early 2000s, like brushed E-Maxx and HPI Savage back in the day, and converting them to brushless and rock crawlers using some heli parts and cobbled up frame mounts. It was time for us to change frustration to innovation around 2007, and we decided to start making full conversion machined chassis for the Savage, along with brushless conversions and suspension mods for the E-Savage as well. Fast was fun, but then Axial came out with the AX-10 crawler, and we began making conversion parts for those to make the buggy into a scale truck. Our first scale truck chassis came out in 2008, called the CrossCanyon. Within a couple of years we had designed a full leaf spring chassis called 4TEN, to convert AX-10 parts, and then moved all the motor/transmission stuff up front to make way for interiors and more realistic truck builds. In total, we’ve designed and manufactured 5 chassis lines, 7 scale transmission conversions, and 3 different axle brands to date.

RCCA: What is your favorite part of scale RC?

CR: I really love the mechanics of trucks. Doing suspension geometry and layouts helps me get my nerd fix in, but I’m an outdoorsman, and really love to get out on trails and rocks with the tiny trucks. This fits well with product testing, and a great opportunity to build up a cool rig for pictures and videos. It’s a challenge to me to get to a beautiful spot out in nature, and set up a proper scale photo or video shoot. Of course, driving and trailing with friends is a major highlight, and I’ve built life long friendships with many I’ve met in the scale truck community. I’m always smiling when out with friends on the trail! like seeing drivers with smiles on their faces enjoying a track I designed. I also try to learn from one of the best

RCCA: What sort of events are you involved in with scale trucks?

CR: We got involved in event hosting back in 2015 with the GCM Adventure Series, a non-class trail event where drivers have to navigate groomed courses and tackle certain driving challenges. Soon we added truck tech-in to add points for certain features of function and looks, and then added a full show and shine GCM Gallery. This Gallery event has lead us to be involved in 6 years of the Ultimate Scale Truck Expo, as well as dozens of other scale truck events in North America. We have hosted full GCM Gallery, Adventure Series and Expedition events several times, and also run a GCM Gallery other host’s events. It’s a real pleasure to reward the scale truck builders for their efforts in areas like Engine Bay, Interior, and Accessories, as well as Paint and Weathering etc. We like to get involved in driving events and building challenges as well.

RCCA: What future Projects can you tell us about?

CR: We’ve almost finished our first full year of the CMAX2 chassis, our latest design, and we continue to build and release more new body fitment setups for this one. We’re also re-releasing some of our original wheel designs from 2014, as a special project. There’s also a cool new T-case design coming for our popular LRT2 scale transmission setups. Always new ideas brewing!

RCCA: Do you have any other hobbies?

CR: You likely already figured out I’m a bit of a gear head, and in the past I’ve built full size hotrods, and antique cars and trucks a few times. I’m into travel, fishing, outdoors stuff, and hanging out with my family. On the RC hobby side, I’ve been into cars and trucks, etc. since the 80s, and also run boats, and do flying, although I don’t have a great record with helicopters!

RCCA: Is there anything else you want to let our readers know?

CR: I’m so glad to be in this scale truck segment of RC, and I’ve had the privilege of combining many of my hobbies with traveling across oceans and North America to do it, meeting the greatest people on earth! The RC community has been a huge positive gain in my life, and I’m super glad to have so many great connections through this hobby. So many people have offered suggestions, helped with builds, and collaborated events with us, and I’d like to say thanks to all of them. As we say in our videos, “tiny trucks!”

To learn more about Chris Robinson and GCM Racing,
check out these links:
Instagram: @gcmracing
Facebook: @gcmracing

Tiny Truck Nerd

Tiny Truck Nerd

Tiny Truck Nerd

Tiny Truck Nerd

Tiny Truck Nerd

Tiny Truck Nerd

Chris Robinson

Text by Leigh Guarnieri
Images courtesy of Chris Robinson

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Updated: May 16, 2024 — 7:55 PM
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