Category Archives: Kyosho

What Racing Stadium Truck – 2016 Edition

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My old HPI E Firestorm

It is strange the things that motivate you sometimes, after racing at a major race meet on the weekend, and being perfectly happy with my RC Fleet, I find myself desiring a Stadium Truck once again after having a HPI E-Firestorm many years ago which had a number of modifications for racing, only to have nobody to race against!!  Unfortunately Team Durango are no longer making their DEST210R truck, so maybe I need to convert my Short Course DESC210R with a few parts….

However this, combined with teasers of the new Xray XT2 Stadium Truck got me thinking about what is available out there, so let’s have a look! I’ll look at racing kits at this stage, I will cover RTR Stadium Trucks another day as there is a lot of them out there.

Now don’t be fooled into thinking that all stadium trucks are electric, this is far from the case with many nitro powered trucks appearing over the years and a few that are still available. Kyosho and HPI both still sell Nitro powered Stadium Trucks, they have just fallen from favor when 1:8 Truggies started taking center stage.

Now a little history for those who may not be aware, Stadium Trucks, often just referred to as trucks are based on 2wd buggies with truck bodies, wider arms, larger tyres and often longer chassis.  And while that remains true of many of the original Stadium Trucks like the Tamiya Stadium Blitzer, the same remains true today.

Team Losi / TLR

So the current ST from TLR is the 22T 2.0 which is an upgrade from the original 22T released not so long ago as a part of the re invigoration of the Losi racing range under the TLR banner. Rear or mid motor mount is your choice in this kit in a very sleek design with a narrow (and not so spacious, chassis.

22t20

Xray

The newest Stadium Truck on the block, and the one about which we know the least! We presume it will be based on the XB2, and that is about all we know.  When we know, you will know!

xt2

Team Associated

RC10T5M or the shorter name it is most commonly known by, T5M is the latest from Team Associated, however with the release of the B6 and B6D there may well be a new version out some time in the near future.  This kit can trace it’s roots back to one of the original Team Associated Classics, the RC10T, and what a classic that is.  Honestly with the original RC10 being re released, I am amased the RC10T has not followed suit.

The T4.2 however is also still available in it’s rear motor mount only setup, but as an RTR, so that is for another day.  The T5M conversely is mid mount only so you really need to choose a kit to suit the surface that you are driving on, loose dirt or high traction clay or carpet/astroturf.

t5m

Kyosho

The Ultima RT6 is the latest truck from Kyosho released not too long after the new RB6 buggy.  Kyosho design and quality is hard to go by if you can afford it.  All in all a beautiful truck that has all the adjustment and tuning you could ever need. It almost goes without saying that Mid and Rear engine mount configurations can be built from this truck kit.

RB6

Team C

Team C isn’t a name you hear that often about the traps, but they do still sell a Stadium Truck in the form of the TC02T truck based once again from their buggy.  Whilst it is a slightly older design than some of the other trucks available, it will still put a smile on your dial.

tc02t-1

X Factory

This one is slightly from left field, but X Factory have been making conversion kits for Team Associated cars for many years.  Their X-60CF kit takes a T4 / 4.1 / 4.2 and turns converts it to the X Factory ST with a carbon fiber chassis and Mid motor configuration, something Associated only has done with the T5M recently.

Team Durango

Last but not least I do have to mention one sadly departed kit, the Team Durango DEST210R.  Yes, I know that it is no longer in production, but I mention it because A) I hope a new version will appear, and B) because it was the first ST (correct me if I am wrong here) to come where you could choose a Mid or Rear mounted motor position right out of the box, and switch them as needed.  Team Durango’s kits have been doing this since they released the DEX210 in 2011 and this feature has carried through to the Stadium Truck and Short Course Truck based on the same platform. As i’ve gotten back into ST’s I am thinking that I will buy the needed parts to convert my Short Course Durango into a Stadium Truck (Chassis, body and wheels), so i’ll let you know how that goes!

Has Drifting and Street Racers saved the Touring Car?

Ok, ok, I know that touring car racing is not dead, but there has been a significant increase in the number of cars designed to either cater to those wanting sideways action, or some social street driving or racing.  Much like their crawling cousins, scale accessories and scale detail are also king in this arena of public opinion. However this new brand of on road driver has certainly resurrected some interest in On Road chassis.

Today’s release of two muscle cars from Kyosho on the Fazer platform, a 1970 Dodge Charger and a 2015 Dodge Challenger Hellcat are further evidence, and while I don’t know how these vehicles are selling, I certainly see a few around the place, and there is certainly a lot of chatter generated by them.  Heck i’d be quite happy with one the the offerings on the Vaterra V100 platform or the new HPI RS4 Sport 3 platform (and I almost forgot the Team Associated Apex cars).  All of these platforms have a number of attributes in common, great looking scale bodies, scale tyres and rims, basic shaft driven platforms and affordable pricing.  This is fast turning into a what RC car to buy for street fun article, but I will resist!

Now none of these are what you would call drift vehicles despite being labeled as such and coming with hard tyres.  Yes they do a decent job, but in my mind a drift car has to at least have an optional set of gearing to allow a Counter steer (or CS) conversion.  What does that mean?  Well the rear wheels turn faster than the front ones.  Why?  Because it’s easier to keep the car sideways, and who doesn’t like a bit of sideways action sometimes.  None of the cars mentioned before have much in the way of adjustment either with all having fixed suspension links, but most have aftermarket or factory adjustable ones available to allow for some adjustment.  That said, this keeps the price of these units down, and there is nothing like a car that is fun to drive, a decent price to buy and looks great as well.  Personally I love how the BMW M3 and Subaru BRZ models on the HPI Sport 3 chassis look, but the 1969 Corvette from Vaterra looks amazing as well.

Many of this new breed of street cars also come with waterproof electronics, so even a rainy day isn’t able to keep you off the streets.  About the only feature that I am a little disappointed is still on these cars is the ubiquitous post body mounts.  Yes, they work well, but there are some great magnetic body mounts available today which eliminate the posts and give the car a much clearer look, but are still strong enough to stop the body coming off easily.

There is a whole range of chassis and bodies out there, and there are some offerings from Yokomo, MST and Sakura which are true drift chassis, but expect to be paying more than the cars we are discussing here today.

I guess what I am saying is don’t be a chassis snob, grab one of these budget street brawlers, grab some mates and go outside and have some fun!  And because everybody loves some eye candy, here is a slide show of some of the offerings on sale at the moment.

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PS, yes, I completely missed out on the Tamiya TT-01 and TT02 platforms, I could say I was focusing on new platforms, but the TT-02 is a new platform, Maybe i have a bit of tunnel vision, but check out the Tamiya cars as well as they have a huge range of cars and bodies available.

Re Released Kyosho Tomahawk Scale Goodness

Yes, I already posted this on facebook, but it needed a blog post all of it’s own.  I have to say that this and a HPI Mini Trophy have fast moved to the top of my “RC cars I want” over a SCX10 of late (ok, the Tomohawk went straight to the top this morning).

So the details, well it’s awesome, although I suppose that doesn’t count as a feature.  The design is a little different from the original, but those improvements have all been a good thing.  From what I can find the original was released in 1985 and was developed from the recently re released scorpion, this year marks 30 years since it’s release.  The changes include:

  • A unique battery mount to  allow a full size stick pack to be mounted side-to-side instead of the original hump packs
  • Ability to fit a shorty lipo lengthways in the chassis
  • improved servo mount
  • gearbox housing is now a two-piece design made of die-cast aluminum
  • A gear differential wiht optional ball diff (original had no differential)
  • slipper clutch to cope wth modern bushless systems
  • 48 pitch gears
  • soft compound tyres with foam inserts
  • arms, chassis plates, and the rails of the main chassis feature full 6061T6 aluminum construction
  • Countersunk hex-head machine screws are used throughout
  • bright red anodized aluminum shocks are slightly larger in diameter than the original shocks, and they feature polished stainless shafts for much smoother, more durable shocks
  • a slight increase in suspension width for stability
  • Expected Release Date: June 2015

To Dawn Trading and Hobbies Australia (the Australian Kyosho Distributors), I am happy to get down on my knees and beg you to send me one of these to review, pretty please with a cherry on top?

Kyosho re releases a two wheeled masterpiece

Kyosho is re releasing the HONDA NSR for 2014 for those who love their RC bikes!  The documents refer to two bikes, although I could only see one model or colour scheme, but as it is Mick Doohan what more do you need!

THE MOST REALISTIC SCALE MOTORBIKES ON THE TRACK!

The ultimate in scale realism! These two bikes not only lean realistically through the curves, but the rider moves from side to side at the same time! These two models are moulded for even greater scale accuracy and easier access to radio equipment and mechanical parts. The rider is made from an astounding twenty separate parts for natural movement! Fully functional suspension using sprung front forks and a sprung monoshock swing arm at the rear ensure efficient road holding. Oil filled sprung dampers can be fitted as optional uprate parts for even better handling on rougher tracks. The powerful Kyosho Le Mans DM20 motor (included) drives the rear wheel via a real chain system. (Optional ballraced motors can also be fitted for even better performance). Each kit includes two gear ratios, allowing you to match the power to the track. A comprehensive sponsor decal sheet is included for both the rider figure and the bike itself, allowing you to create a scale masterpiece that really works! Great looks and fun to drive too!

Source: http://www.kyoshoamerica.com/HONDA-NSR_p_23552.html

Kyosho Plazma LM Nissan R90CP kit

There is something irresistable about LM cars, but then I suppose i’ve never really been an F1 fan so this is the next thing really.

Kyosho Plazma LM Nissan R90CP kit

Kyosho soon have a new bodyshell variant of the Plazma LM 1/12th scale chassis kit available. Joining the Toyota TS020, the Porsche 962 and the Mazda 787B is the 1990’s Nissan R90CP No. 23. Based on the Plazma Ra competition pan car the Plazma LM series of cars build on a long wheelbase chassis with conventional T-bar rear suspension, a single central shock and dual side dampers. The highly adjustable front suspension is directly taken over from the LM’s competition sibling as are many parts of the rear suspension including the adjustable ball differential. The car is useable with a wide range of battery configurations including 1S to 2S LiPo batteries and four to six cell NiMH battery packs and comes almost ready-to-run including a brushed G20 standard motor, pre-mounted high grip foam tires and the highly detailed Nissan R90CP body shell.

For more details visit Redrc at http://www.redrc.net/2014/11/kyosho-plazma-lm-nissan-r90cp-kit/

Kyosho Beetle Second Coming

Kyosho have released details of the 2014 version of their classic Beetle Buggy. Have a read of what the 2014 version has in store 😉

The Second ultimate revival! Get ready for the resurgence of Kyosho’s famous Beetle!
In the spirit of the original but with upgrades throughout!

The legendary Kyosho Beetle is credited with taking the racing buggy category into the realm of pure motorsports. Even after 30 years since it was first released in 1983, the indelible mark of the Beetle still exists with its many fans around the world. Kyosho is proud to renew this machine to all its former glory! While maintaining the wild and free spirit of the original baja bug style body and chassis layout, the 2014 version features the latest in performance technology and sacrifices nothing in speed and endurance on modern buggy racing tracks. Externally it may look like the original Beetle with its semi-trailing suspension arms, but the advanced 6061T6 forged aluminum material delivers futuristic levels of strength, rigidity and durability. Following the original design, the Beetle 2014 features a new two-piece die-cast aluminum gearbox with differential gears. In addition, the included slipper clutch protects the transmission as well as delivers efficient traction that takes the Beetle’s control feel and durability to a new higher level. Precision 48 pitch gears reduce traction pulsation for direct driving control characteristics while the flat under surface of the countersunk chassis has no protruding screw heads for minimal contact resistance and scraping, resulting in higher durability. Stainless shafts combine with aluminum shock bodies on the oil shocks for smooth stroke from top to bottom and running performance worthy of a true racing buggy. Like the original Beetle, the 2014 version is packaged as an unassembled kit, but nearly all tapping screws and nuts have been replaced with the improved lightweight and security of hex screws. From expert racers who knew the magic of the original Beetle to modern-day racers, discover for yourself why the Beetle 2014 commands such respect!

Source: http://www.kyoshoamerica.com/Beetle-2014-Buggy-Kit_p_23533.html

Mad Bug VE new from Kyosho

Kyosho have released details of their Mad Bug VE racing buggy to their USA website today, and it looks like a good package with a $300 USD price tag.  With waterproof electronics, a NiMH battery and trickle charger, off road tyres and a cool looking body in two colours, it looks like a great bashing vehicle.

The 4wd platform reminds me somewhat of a 4wd stadium truck rather than a buggy, but the beetle body gives it that buggy look, although it’s not a race buggy so not sure why the racing name, probably because of the looks as compared with a full size off road racing buggy.  S

Source: http://www.kyoshoamerica.com/search.asp?keyword=mad+bug&search.x=24&search.y=11

What 4wd Buggy to race for 2014

I have written a couple of “What to Buy” type articles before, and with the release of the B44.3 I thought I would add a what 4wd Buggy to the list! We won’t separate into RTR or Kits because there are very few competition level 4wd buggies that are available as RTR’s. Mid mount or rear mount motors, well there are variations to positioning, but in 4wd they are all mid mounted. I may have missed out some, but I think I have most of the major models in the 4wd game at the moment.

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Team Losi / TLR

TLR had a bit of a gap in their lineup until recently when the 22-4 was added to their range.  A development of the older XX-4 (not the XXX-4 that replaced that) it is unusual in that it sports a triple belt drive system rather than the driveshaft arrangement found more commonly in other 4wd Buggies.  Featuring an alloy chassis that is the current trend in buggy chassis it follows the norms there, but the forward motor, triple belt drive system certainly makes it look a bit different under the hood.  Ball Differentials at each end to provide drive and a cab forward body finish off what is an impressive package.  TLR even throw in two sets of wheels for the 22-4! Battery wise, it is Saddle packs here, although you can accommodate a few different sized packs.
http://www.tlracing.com/Products/Default.aspx?ProdID=TLR03005

Team Associated

The newest player on the 4wd block, although with a revised rather than all new car, is the Associated B44.3.  The B44 platform has been no slouch, and the .3 iteration adds some important updates.  An Alloy chassis being one notable feature update for this model along with a floating motor and servo mounts. Weight distribution is also a key flexibility with the ability to run a Front motor, rear saddle battery pack configuration, or flip it all around to with a rear motor configuration with a shorty pack on the opposite side. Gear differentials are a new feature to cater for the current generation of high grip, and/or indoor tracks, however the previous generation ball differentials are compatible.
http://www.teamassociated.com/cars_and_trucks/B44.3/Factory_Team/

Kyosho

The new ZX-6 Buggy is the natural choice for a Buggy form Kyosho which comes as a kit as with the B44.3 and 22-4 above, however there is a 2nd choice from Koysho.  That 2nd choice comes in the Ready to Run Dirt Hog Buggy which is a fraction of the price of the ZX-6 Kit.  Yes, it is nowhere near as competitive as it’s big brother, but as a vehicle for somebody wanting to try out 4wd Buggy for a smaller slice of your hard earned dollars, or a younger driver getting in to the hobby.  Based on the Fazer platform it comes with a 2.4ghz radio, slipper clutch, 27t brushed motor and ESC, NiMH battery and charger.
http://www.kyoshoamerica.com/Dirt-Hog-Type-1-Orange-4WD-Bug_p_23265.html

Let’s talk about big brother now, the ZX-6.  Like the B44.3 the ZX-6 has a configuration that can be altered from a shorty battery on the right or left, through to a saddle pack layout, although the ZX-6 has a few more configurations available than the B44.3.  Alloy chassis is the name of the game here as well, and the shocks are the quality we have come to expect from the ZX line of Kyosho vehicles.  Ball differentials at both ends and an aggressive cab forward body finish off what is always a high quality product.
http://www.kyoshoamerica.com/LAZER-ZX-6-4WD-Kit_p_23216.html

Traxxas

For the most part Traxxas is a Basher brand, not racing.  This is illustrated by them not having a 1:10 4wd Buggy in their lineup.  So if you are a Traxxas Fan, move along, nothing to see here.

HPI / HB

The much hyped, and long delayed D413 is the still hard to get Buggy from HPI/HB. It’s layout is a little different to the norm with it’s designer, Torrance Deguzman focusing on strength first to give the driver confidence to push on.  It has a very similar layout to it’s predecessor, the Hot bodies D4 and D4 WCE with a Carbon Fibre chassis, but very different front bulkheads/shock towers, with a triangular arrangement with front and rear arms bracing the arrangement.  Gear differentials x3 (front, centre & rear) are another defining feature.  This is something normally reserved for the big 1:8 buggies, but has been packed into the small D413 platform.  Another unusual feature is monocoque suspension arms with adjustable stiffness plates.  A Saddle Pack or Shorty configuration are also battery placement options along with Front or Rear motor placement options.  Whilst one of the more unusually configured buggies, it has proved itself at the 2013 Roar Nationals at the hands of Ty Tessmann where he took the win in the D413.
http://www.hpiracing.com/en/kit/112723

Xray

Xray are no strangers to off road racing with their luxury, and very competitive, 8th scale buggies, and now they have a fighter in the 10th scale ring in the form of the XB4, with the XB4 2014 being the latest version of the Buggy.  A key feature of the XB4 is the composite chassis frame with separate front and rear chassis plates allowing the entire rear suspension to be mounted in the standard position, or directly to the aluminium chassis with some optional parts. The front and read differentials are bevel gear types for lifespan and reliability, however optional ball differentials are available.  Saddle pack batters are the only battery configuration option here.
http://www.teamxray.com/xb4/

Schumacher

The CAT series of 4wd Buggies from Schumacher are legendary in their home country of England, and the latest version, the CAT K1 Aero is no exception. Sporting a Carbon Fibre chassis, nut guards on the shock towers to protect them from damage, gear differentials front and rear, twin efficient belt transmission and awesome black anodised parts, it is a car that looks as good as it performs.  Not the cheapest car with all the carbon fibre, but one that can perform on any world stage.
http://www.racing-cars.com/pp/Car_Showroom/CAT_K1_Aero.html

SWorkz

Bolstered by the addition of Atsushi Hara to their ranks of racers they have suddenly shot into the limelight.  It’s not that they are new, they just had a much lower profile in the west until recently.  In 1:10 their platform is the S104 EK1 which is a little hard to find much information about from their website, and to be honest, i’ve not seen anybody in Australia racing one, but it’s an option none the less.  I have seen a Kit and RTR version in different places which is unusual for a competition 4wd buggy.  It comes with two different bodies as well, one for salle pack configuration and a different one for shorty battery packs. Alloy chassis and shaft driven it’s layout is fairly conventional with maybe the exception of the 14mm wheel hexes.
http://www.sworkz.com/s104_EK1.html

Team Durango

Now onto it’s fourth version, the DEX410 V4 is an affordable car that is well engineered and proven itself on a range of race tracks around the world.  Stronger gear differentials and a narrow alloy chassis are features of the Buggy. The saddle pack battery configuration is a little different with the rear driveshaft running over the top of the batteries, and removed in order to change them.  The car comes with an almost bewildering range of adjustments, which means it can be made to work well on any circuit.
http://www.team-durango.com/race-cars/dex410v4/

Yokomo

Yokomo also has a player in the 4wd game with their B-Max 4 III.  I’m afraid to say I know little about this platform, although I have seen a few people racing them.  Shaft driven, Gear differentials, Saddle Pack battery configuration and an alloy chassis all look top notch quality, and up to date in terms of their design.  It is just a manufacturer that we don’t hear a lot about.
http://www.teamyokomo.eu/yokomo-europe/eshop/1-1-Yokomo-Chassis/0/5/1649-Yokomo-B-MAX4-III

Tamiya

A big name in RC Cars, but one that you don’t often see on the tracks with their TRF503 4wd Buggy.  Perhaps it is the price, nearly double some of its competitors, or maybe it is the …… no, really it;s the price that puts it out of reach for the average racer and for that much more over some fantastic other buggies in this sector that cost less, it’s hard to justify.
http://www.tamiyausa.com/items/radio-control-kits-30/off-road-buggies-36450/rc-trf503-chassis-kit-42275