Category Archives: Reviews

RC4WD Trail finder 2 Review

Yes yes, I know that the trail finder 2 has been around for a while, but this one is new to me and the amazing team at RC4WD were generous enough to send me one to test out their amazing new 4Runner body which I built and reviewed earlier this year, details can be found here.

Unboxing

I have made a few kits in the past, although admittedly none have them have been rock crawlers, and certainly nothing like the Trail Finder 2 from RC4WD. To put it simply, opening the box is like uncovering a paint by numbers masterpiece, especially with the chassis rails taking centre stage when you first open the box. Every nut, bolt and screw is in i’s own clearly labelled bag, and the instructions are incredibly thorough with very little ambiguity, if you read them through. I was honestly amazed at how small the box was as well, however there is a lot packed into that box very cleverly. Another thing you will find is very little plastic, almost all of the kit is metal parts with a few small exceptions, so make sure you pack some threadlock if you don’t already have some ready when you are building this kit.

Building

So you have gotten over your initial excitement and it is time to start building. The instructions follow a logical sequence stepping through the build of the vehicle. The screws and small parts are in bags labelled very clearly, and the instructions don’t presume to try and tell you numbers for the major parts, simply choosing to show an image which is more than enough to identify it by.

With all the metal screws in metal parts you will need your threadlock handy throughout most of the build. I found the build of the kit a somewhat cathartic experience compared to my past build of predominantly composite kits. once the two chassis rails come together for the first time to form that familiar ladder chassis was also a satisfying moment. With metal parts fitting so precisely and screws always just the right length, I know I sound a little OCD here, but I enjoyed the build.

Steps 29 and 30 however I had a little difficulty with as once they were fitted (and I had to back of the chassis side screws just a little to get the transmission to drop in), I was getting a little binding in the transmission and I couldn’t work out why or where. I ended up isolating the issue to the screws in step 19 which holds the transmission. It was like tightening them too much caused some tightness, however leaving them a little looser, but with some threadlock to hold them in place resulted in a silky smooth movement in the system.

One fascinating part of the Trail Finder 2 chassis is the 2 speed transmission, just like a full size 4wd. Initially I didn’t have a spare radio so I did not install the 2nd servo to control the High / Low shift. You still can use the vehicle and manually shift this from beneath the vehicle if and when it is needed, however there is something infinitely satisfying about hitting the channel 3 button to switch into low range from the radio. A 4 channel radio is the best money I have spent on a radio in years!

The place that I made the most mistakes in the build was step 46, the wheels. I got to this step on page 25 and thought yup, just bolt the wheels together. So I pushed and shoved the screws to try and get the wheel parts to clamp the tyres onto the internal beadlocks. It was hell on my hands and I ended up snapping one of the little M2 screws to boot. However I got them done and turned the page to 26 to continue the build. Then I saw step 48 where you use two longer screws to pull the wheel together before inserting the correct screws to finish the wheels. Then I cried for a while for being so stupid, dried my tears and moved on.

Then about 2 weeks later and a few runs on the trail I noticed I was missing wheel nuts on the right hand side of the vehicle, two on each wheel in fact. After puzzling over this for a while and examining the wheels I realised that after all the trouble I had with the beadlock wheel nuts and screws I had never thread locked those tiny nuts. I had also had trouble holding the nuts with pliers to tighten them as I didn’t have a small enough spanner to hold them, or so I thought…. I reached out to my local crawling group on Facebook and received an excellent piece of advice from Stephen (thanks mate) about a small set of Supercheap Spanners in a funky paint scheme. This rattled a memory and after a search of my tool box I found a set that I had purchased for a job on my Series 2 Land Rover, and low and behold, the smallest one (4mm) worked like it was made for the job, and made that job far simpler!

Building the body, well you can already read about the 4Runner build, so I won’t double up on that here. In terms of equipment, well an old 27 turn silver can took the motor stage as well as a couple of spare servos and finally a Spektrum DX4s took the radio slot and a spare hobbywing speed controller to drive the operation. Essentially what I had lying about the place. That said, a crawler isn’t a static thing, so expect that combination to change and evolve along the way, the same goes for accessories, a rig like this NEEDS some scale accessories added to the build!

The Drive

Now came that part I had been itching to do since I started this build, drive it!

To begin with, most of the time I had spent behind the wheel of a crawler to date has been driving a SCX10, what is probably one of the most common rock crawlers out there. Now before anybody yells at me, the Trail Finder 2 really is a Trail Truck or Scale Truck, rather than a Rock Crawler I know, but the SCX is an excellent baseline for me to compare to.

Dynamics of the Trail Finder 2 (TF2) are somewhat different to the average crawler, it is a little heavier than your average truck, and a LOT heavier than your average racing buggy. As such it has a much higher centre of gravity than I am used to. This certainly has an adverse effect on some obstacles such as side slopes and climbing / ascending. Even with leaf springs it will not tolerate as extreme angles across a slope.

Crossing rough terrain is a similar problem, large rocks and cross axle situations see the TF2 struggling to articulate enough to gain traction, and the narrower tyres limit the opportunities for grip. The locked differentials do help keep the vehicle moving forwards however. Approach and departure angles likewise mean that larger obstacles soon stop progress as compared with a SCX10.

BUT, this is a Trail Truck, not a rock crawler. Both it’s appearance, and performance are fare more accurate representations of a real life leaf sprung vehicle, in fact on suitable scale terrain, it is an absolute delight to watch traversing obstacles and trails, something it does with aplomb and grace. The more you drive it the more the suspension seems to loosen up and move with the terrain. Yes, the body can be hung up, but that is part of the fun ensuring that you pick lines where this isn’t a problem, and it is so satisfying when you get it right and glide through a tough section of track. From rocky terrain, to walking trails, 4wd tracks, playgrounds and paddocks, i’ve not found anywhere that the TF2 doesn’t shine at doing exactly what it is designed to do, with zero complaints or problems. Even the low range change is smooth and satisfying when it snicks home.

In honesty, I think this truck has spawned a new addiction for me, and my land rover addiction has me eyeing off the RC4WD Gelande II D110 , but I have more plans for the 4Runner first……

RC4WD 4Runner Review

I was ecstatic when RC4WD contacted me to review their new hard body for the Trail Finder 2 chassis late last year. However try as I may I couldn’t wheedle out of them what it was until it arrived at my door. As we know now, it was a Toyota 4Runner from 1985 that came out of that box, and today we can now reveal the finished product in all it’s 80’s glory!

First Impressions

My first impressions of the kit when I opened the box was of amazement at the level of detail that it included from big details like opening doors, tailgate and bonnet, down to stickers for the dashboard, instruction placard for 4wd and even the tiny indicator stalks on the steering column. At this time my excitement moved a little into the arena of panic. Whilst I have built an worked on a lot of RC cars from Kits to RTR’s, this was my first detailed hard body from any firm, let alone one with a reputation for amazing detail like Rc4wd, and I really didn’t want to make a mess of it. But then how different could it be to the model plane and tank kits I used to make not so many years ago…. right?

The Build

So working with a combination of tools for my radio control racing pit bag, and my modelling toolbox I set off on the build. Naturally the first step was reading the instructions and then I put it all away for the next most important step, research. Below are the images that I used for inspiration.

No, i’m not mad (ok, maybe a little) but a key part of any project like this is knowing what the vehicles looked like in real life, and knowing what colours you want to paint it, what markings (in this case stickers) you need to use, and details like bumper colours etc etc. With that done and deciding to go with a bright red colour scheme I purchased a can or red paint, some black and browns for the interior, and the build could begin in earnest.

Tip 1: know your size, 1 pressure pack of tamiya paint may be fine for a small tank in 1:72 or 1:48, but not a big 1:10 4wd! In the end I used 3 cans of paint.

Tip 2: Don’t spray on windy days, I suspect I lost almost a whole can battling the wind in trying to get the bodywork painted. Don’t Rush, take your time.

Interior detail is amazing!

Now I mentioned research and planning earlier, and planning is an important part of this built. If you just put the kit together as stated and tried to paint it, you would be left in a nightmare of close together parts that should be different colours. Even step one can’t really be completed until later in the build as you need to paint the taillights in 2 different colours, and the body needs to be painted before you can attach them. So plan ahead, and work out what gets put together before and after painting and you will be far happier with the result.

One thing I loved about the instructions is that they presume you know what you are doing. Parts are rarely needed to be labelled by their numbers, and the screws are also labelled clearly as to size and number needed for any given step. Not only that but each screw is in it’s own labelled bag, often with a spare in each size which I did need.

Tip 3: The screws that hold in the tail lights need 2 different screwdrivers, get it right or you strip the small M1.6 philips head screws. Spares in the kit to the rescue!

So whilst a first glance at the kit may be panic inducing, the steps move through logically and smoothly. All parts were good fits, especially the metal parts. I had to remove some moulding flash from a few parts, but it probably doesn’t show up when you look at it on a larger scale. I probably spent more time worrying about what colours what part would be than any concerns with the build itself.

I loved that all the lights have provision for LED lights to be fitted, and I thought the magnet built into the bonnet and frame to keep the bonnet closed (and a similar arrangement with the passenger doors) were very clever additions to this detailed kit. Similarly the great looking, but actually made of rubber so they don’t break off so easily rear view mirrors were also a clever inclusion.

Painting the large body proved to be my biggest headache with a lot more real estate to cover with paint than I am used to. As a result of rushing (yes, again take your time!) and inexperience I can see a slight variation in the colouring on a couple of my panels. Whilst it isn’t particularly noticeable it has given me a few ideas to weather the model from an as new look, to a work and repaired look of a well used vehicle, but that will be a topic of a different article.

Tip 4: Paint all of your exterior panels at the same time, and shake the c^@& out of the cans before you start spraying.

Tip 5: Don’t skimp on masking tape, the Tamiya tape is worth it over normal blue masking tape, and take it off as soon as you can, even between coats.

Tip 6: if you need to remove masking tape residue without damaging the paint, I found WD40 does wonder after trying about 20 other products.

Bits I didn’t like about the kit, well they are few and far between. The back of the headrests and interior of the canopy on the tray could have had a little more detail, but considering the detail there is to be found on this kit, it really is nit picking.

The Final Result

Well I would be telling porky pies of I said I was 100% happy with the result, but that is entirely down to small mistakes made on my part. As far is the kit is concerned, it is magnificent. It more than justifies it’s asking price and is rich in detail and features. Be it for a hard working crawler or shelf queen, it has certainly entered the annuls of the Crawler Hall of Fame as an iconic vehicle recreated with perfect clarity.

I have learnt a lot from the build, and enjoyed it more than a little, in fact I found myself contemplating what I could or would do differently, or improve upon, next time. I wonder what else RC4WD have up their sleeve. In the meantime, Brady, didn’t you have a Gelande 2 that needed some repairs ……

Want to get your hands on this 80’s goodness, then hit up RC4WD at
https://store.rc4wd.com/RC4WD-1985-Toyota-4Runner-Hard-Body-Complete-Set_p_7220.html

Intech Racing ER-12M 2.0 buggy Lite- Unboxing Review

Intech Racing, I had never heard of them either until recently, but they are a Taiwanese manufacturer making a fresh push into the Australian market with some unique and innovative ideas. Intech Racing is a relative newcomer to Australia but they have been building cars for over ten years with a focus on continuous improvement. Intech Racing manufactures a range of off-road buggies and trucks in both 10th and 8th scale, with either electric or nitro power trains.

Intech Racing has kindly provided Aussie RC News with an ER-12M 2.0 Lite 2wd buggy to build and review. Prior to sending a test vehicle, Intech Racing contacted me to discuss which vehicle we would like to test first. After looking at their range of smart looking vehicles the ER-12M 2.0 Lite 2wd buggy stood out to me as a vehicle which would be well suited to racing and being 2wd we could put it to the test in the 2wd stock class, racing against the established brands.

The ER-12 2.0M is a rear wheel drive buggy, with a mid-mounted motor design and a narrow aluminium chassis. This type of design is now the most common in Australia, with rear mounted motor platforms now a rarity. Continue reading Intech Racing ER-12M 2.0 buggy Lite- Unboxing Review

Review: 720 Spin Setup Tools Part 1

What are they?

These setup tools allow you to quickly and easily adjust the toe and camber on a variety of 1:10 scale radio control vehicles. Also available is a set of camber gauges and a longer set of plates to suit Stadium Trucks and Short Course Trucks with their wider stance. Available in 3 fluorescent colours there is an option to please most people, but not get lost in your pit bag.  Those being Yellow, Pink and the Green set that is pictured in this review.

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The Review

Continue reading Review: 720 Spin Setup Tools Part 1

Crash tested: Highest DLP750 Servo

Welcome to the first edition of Crash Tested. The review column where I will take an RC product thats new (to me) and go do my usual thing to see how it performs. There may be crashing, they’re may be winning (sometimes) but at the end, I have a verdict.

On my test bench I have a brand new Highest RC DLP750 low profile servo, aimed at 1/10 on road and off road vehicles in Highest RC’s regular fashion of good looks and impressive specs.

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Mounted up and ready to go! Oh father please forgive the sins of my messy wiring! 

Build and specs

An aluminium top and middle case, with plastic bottom looks very nice in any car. That ‘full metal jacket’ look that everyone likes is mostly there on the DLP750, although slightly diminished due to the plastic bottom cover, but we can get over that once its installed in the car!

A Coreless motor and full metal internal gears puts it on the same level as its main competitors in the Futaba BLS571SV and Savox 1251mg, however its 51.6g weight makes it 10g heaver than the futaba and 7g heavier than the Savox, if you’re a stock racer who’s watching the scales closely, this may be a deal breaker for you.

What the DLP750 loses in weight, it makes up for in its torque and speed numbers, boasting 0.1s / 11.8kg-cm on 6.0V, and 0.08s / 14.3kg-cm on 7.4V, its a full head and shoulders above the Futaba at 0.08 / 11/0kg-cm on 7.4V, meanwhile the Savox only hits 0.09s / 9kg-cm at 6V (no specs given for 7.4V)

With a 25t spline to match up with Futaba and Savox users, plus plenty of extra torque and a flashy ‘Full Metal Jacket’ look, at the cost of 7-10g of weight? This servo looks to be a winner for most.

Track Test

The testing comes at a perfect time, after last week I managed to knock a few teeth off the internal gears in my Savox 1251mg ‘Black Edition’, while I drove my Team Associated B6 around the indoor carpet track at Perth Radio Electric Car Club (PRECC). So it was time for a new servo to continue racing.

On Saturday I bolted the DLP750 into my B6, set the centre & endpoints, and threw the car down at PRECC. Right away the steering felt strong and more sensitive, even on 6.0V BEC .after turning a few laps I was feeling comfortable with the handling and pulled the car in to tinker with the BEC and try again.

After turning the BEC voltage up to 7.2 on my ORCA R32 ESC, i headed back out on track to see if I could truly tell the difference between alleged 11.8kg-cm and 14.3kg-cm of torque. Im happy to say that I have always struggled for steering on the tight carpet track at PRECC, however the increased torque made all the steering inputs happen in a flash, so much so I continued to crash into the apex pipes for the next 3 minutes while I tried to figure out the inputs I needed.

I settled down and added -5% expo into the steering before trying to set some fast laps, managing to steer harder meant I could cut tighter lines and change directions faster in the chicanes, a welcome addition to the small 13s layout! I bested my old hot lap from 13.63s to 13.28 s before the run finished. Enough proof to convince me this servo is up to the task!

To further cement my liking for the servo, during my final practice session I had a huge crash and tumble, which actually broke my modified (HB parts) steering linkage on the B6, but did not harm the servo at all.

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The Highest DLP750 looks great! (nicely broken improvised steering linkage)

Conclusion

If you want a servo with good looks, good specs and solid quality, at a decent price…then you should look no further than the Highest DLP-750 Low profile servo. At an advertised retail of $169.95 its not the cheapest servo on the market, but its still cheaper and looks nicer than its main competitor, the Futaba BLS571SV which would set you back $180+ at most Hobby Shops in Australia. Im very happy with the DLP750 in my B6, and I am definitely going to be putting one in my B64 4WD ahead of the upcoming IFMAR world championships in China!

The Highest RC range is now available at Hearns Hobbies in Melbourne, and Ryper Hobbies in Perth, thanks to the guys at Ryper for putting this one aside for me to purchase and test!

Review: Hobbywing Quicrun combo

You may, or may not, remember some time ago that I purchased a Hobbywing Quickrun combo for my son’s buggy along with the matching 17.5 turn motor.  Yup it was over a year ago I am sorry to admit.  wp-1457995377479.jpg

Why so long to review this, well that is somewhat of an embarrassing story.  At the time I purchased myself a new buggy, and moved my electronics into that, and set up my old buggy for my then 8 year old (now 10 year old) son.  I got it all together and ready for the next race meet at my local track.  My son was super excited ad ready to rock.  We got to the track, and that is when it happened.

The Rookie mistake!

Yes I plugged the battery in, turned the car on and the smoke came out!  Yes I had plugged the leads into the battery backwards proving it can happen to anybody! In my defence, I have one battery pack where the terminals are on opposite sides.  However that is no excuse for being lazy.  So no EVERY battery pack I have has the positive side tube painted RED with Humbrol red paint from my local hobby store so I can’t make the mistake as easily ever again!

The Review

Well I can’t review the ESC because I had to borrow an ESC that night and eventually purchased a 2nd hand blue Hobbywing Juststock esc to replace the promising looking Quicrun.  I thought about having it repaired, but really as it was my mistake it was never a warranty job so chalk one up to experience

The 17.5 turn motor however I can briefly talk about as now this is basically a long term review.  So as I mentioned, this car is in the hands of an 8 year old boy most Friday race nights, and whilst he is improving (and has just turned 10), he is not the most sympathetic towards his vehicle.  BUT, this motor is still kicking on strong.  It provides great torque and power for a very low cost proving the worth of these budget items from Hobbywing.  Really it is an amazing unit for the price.  Whilst the track conditions it is used in are not dusty due to racing indoors on carpet, the surface being concrete is not gentle on cars, and nor is Novice/Junior racing.  Yet it hasn’t missed a beat, not even the sensor cable coming loose.

The Verdict

Well I would have to say on what i experienced of the ESC before I killed it, and what I have seen of the ESC in other people’s cars, I would have to say that I am certainly converted to Hobbywing and would not hesitate to recommend this combo to anybody getting into the sport.  Whilst I have been looking for a ESC/Motor manufacturer to use since the departure of Novak from the scene, I think I can safely say that Hobbywing will be filling that place for future purchases.

Team C EP 1/10 long term review

Over the past three seasons I have been running a fleet of Team C cars in both on and off road. The only reason these vehicles were chosen was due to their cheap price and at the time, local track side support.

These vehicles are priced at the lower end of the market and do not have the pedigree of the established brands, but that does not mean that they are not durable or capable vehicles.

My experiences have been with the TS2TE 2wd short course truck, the TC02 2wd buggy in both rear and mid mount and the TR10 all-wheel drive touring car. All of these vehicles have been around for some time now and are generally similar to vehicles once produced by the established brands. I won’t go into the specifics of each car as an online search will get you any specifications you may need, but I will elaborate on the shortcomings and issues that I have overcome.

I’ll start with the on road car first, the TR10. This car was a ready built and only needed electrics, it was cheap and I mean real cheap. I only purchased it to race indoors during the winter when we couldn’t race off road due to the weather. The car is very basic and comes with absolutely useless pre mounted tyres, that offer no grip and are not suitable for racing at all. It has plastic hexes which always fall off the hub or get jammed in the wheel hex when changing tyres. The plastics are of a low quality and strip easily so care is needed. I found the servo mount to be particularly annoying as the plastic is so poor is flexes easily and the servo twists in the mount. The only real positive I found is that despite its short comings it can handle a beating, I regularly hit the boards around the local track and never broke anything except for popping a rear axle pin out once. Overall I wouldn’t recommend this car to anyone interested in racing, but it may make a good drift car by locking the rear diff and fitting some drift tyres. In hindsight I would have been better off finding a used X-ray or Yokomo as a cheap platform to get into on road.

Now onto the off road cars and the TS2TE has been a solid performer and I have enjoyed owning it but if you want to make it a reliable truck then the first thing you will need to upgrade is the rear chassis brace. The kit comes with a plastic brace which is just not up to the task and it is common for the ball studs to tear out of the plastic brace. Replacing it with an alloy brace will solve this issue completely and give you a little more weight in front of the rear axle which can only help with some rear traction.

The other areas which need beefing up are the ball cups and hubs. If you have the alloy hubs which is part of the TS2TE kit you will be fine, but you will want to get these if you have the plastic hubs as they tend to fail at the ball stud. The ball cups are fine initially but they seem to lose their strength pretty quickly, I have found replacing them with the cup used on the TLR22 has worked well.

The only other area that requires some attention is getting out some of the slop in the arms, this is common with all Team C cars as they do not have the tolerances of the established brands. A little time spent shimming out the slop is all that is required.

The TC02 buggy is a similar story to the TS2TE and a lot of the parts have commonality which is pretty handy if you’re running multiple cars. The TC02C mid mount buggy is actually a pretty good car, it doesn’t have all the adjustability of a TLR or AE car, but you can achieve a reliable and predictable setup.

There are no real weak points with this buggy and the only modifications are performance orientated. The kit springs are of average quality and there are not a lot of factory tunning options available, but fortunately they use the now industry standard 12mm big bore shocks. This allows you to use a variety of other manufacturer’s springs, such as the TLR low frequency springs on the rear and standard TLR springs on the front. With the springs and shocks sorted the car is well balanced and provides predictable handling.

Overall Team C cars are a cheap and reliable platform however their biggest downside can be parts availability, local suppliers seem to have little stock and are regularly sold out for long periods. Unlike the big brands you do not have much choice when it comes to hop ups and option parts and the prices of some of the hop ups are way more expensive than an equivalent hop up for a TLR or AE car.

The TC02 and TC02C represent exceptional value on the second hand market and well sorted mid mount buggies regularly change hands at my local club for around $100 or less. This makes them a very cheap entry level car for someone just getting into racing and a great car to learn on.

Purchasing these Team C cars new is a different proposition and the value equation is not as compelling. At a local Adelaide hobby shop the TC02 is being sold for $399 which is only just cheaper than a Team Associated B6 or $100 more than the TLR 22 3.0 which is currently in run out. At this price you would expect the TC02 to be comparable to the other vehicles in this price bracket, but in reality it is not even in the same league. Add to this the lack of local support, lower quality componentry and lack of parts availability and you should be looking elsewhere for your first or next 1/10 car.

thPKB0FFMI

Review – Boom Racing 007-BRV2 High Stability Aluminium Gyro

Hello again from the Perth RC drift scene, today I’m bringing you a review of the Boom Racing 007-BRV2 High Stability Aluminium Gyro.

Boom Racing is a brand that few of you may have heard of before. It’s the in-house brand of Ausdrift sponsor AsiaTees Hobbies and includes over 2700 lines over a very wide selection of chassis including; crawlers, buggies, touring car and drift cars. For this review AsiaTees kindly provided one of their very nice 007-BRV2 high stability aluminium gyros for testing. At the time of writing the 007-BRV2 was available from AsiaTees for $45.08 AUD with free postage from Hong Kong (On orders over $100 AUD).

BR High Stability Alloy Gyro
Boom Racing High Stability Aluminium Gyroscope #007-BR, Photo: AsiaTees

While some regard fitting a gyro to any kind of RC car as cheating, in the case of RWD drift it’s essential to overcoming the difficulties that working at small scale present. In a full size drift car the rotational inertia of the front wheels and tyres creates a natural gyroscopic effect (remember those high school science lessons) allowing the driver to release the steering wheel and let the tyres steer themselves. Due to the relatively low mass of RC drift wheels and tyres and relatively high holding torque of the steering servos used, this simply does not happen at a 1:10 scale. A gyro when correctly set adds a simulated effect of exactly what happens on a 1:1 car.

The Boom Racing 007-BRV2 gyro is available in 6 colours; black, blue, red, pink, green and gold. For this review AsiaTees supplied the gold version as shown above. The attractive aluminium cased gyro is supplied with a very nice mounting tray and all required fasteners. Spare mounting trays can be purchased separately to allow the gyro to be easily moved between models. Gyro gain can be adjusted either digitally with CH3 or manually by turning the gain pot. For manual mode a handy gain adjustment driver is also supplied which saves hunting around in your toolbox for a suitable driver. There are 2 dip switches on the gyro for setting digital or analogue mode and for gyro direction.

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Boom Racing 007-BRV2GD, Photo: AsiaTees

The Boom Racing 007-BRV2 gyro was fitted to 2 different cars for this review, to Jayden Goncalves’ brand new RWD dedicated Yokomo YD-2 Plus and to my RWD converted Alex Racing Design CER-D08 premium. Fitting and connecting the gyro is very easy with 3 short leads for connecting the gyro to your steering servo and receiver CH1 & CH3. The supplied instructions are light on for detail but very easy to follow. For testing purposes I simply mounted the gyro to my chassis with double sided tape rather than using the aluminium mounting tray, Jayden did much the same on his YD-2 Plus.

For me, the overall driving impression with the Boom Racing 007-BRV2 was a big improvement over the MST LSD 2.0 RS gyro it replaced. The MST gyro retails for between $80-90 AUD whereas the 007-BRV2 has much the same functionality at roughly half the price. I noticed on startup that the 007-BRV2 has a different centre frequency to the MST gyro, but once trimmed it maintained that centre setting perfectly throughout the run and on subsequent starts. When digitally set with CH3 of my Futaba 3PM radio to 50% gain, I felt that the 007-BRV2 displayed much smoother action and reduced twitchiness from my OMG D2-LP-CF07s servo compared to the previous MST unit at the same gain setting. For me this resulted in a much more “connected” feel to the steering and far greater predictability and confidence, both of which allowed me to drive a much smoother line with great control while still getting heaps of angle and countersteer.

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Boom Racing: 007-BRV2 gyro, Chassis: CER-D08 Premium, Owner & Photo: Noel Gettingby

Jayden’s impression of the Boom Racing 007-BRV2 was somewhat less positive than mine. Jayden fitted it to his brand new Yokomo YD-2 Plus for it’s maiden runs. He also commented that the 007-BR centred perfectly once trimmed but that on his car it suffered from gyro wobble (caused when the gyro over-corrects at low steering angles and the front wheels wobble). He also found it difficult to find the sweet spot for the gain, he ended up settling on ~40% in order to minimise the wobble from his Futaba S9570SV servo. After his review Jayden fitted a Futaba GY430 gyro, which he found to be smoother for his combination after some tuning. The Futaba gyro retails for $80-90 and also has similar functionality to the 007-BRV2.

In all, the Boom Racing 007-BRV2 high stability aluminium gyro is a very capable gyro, well suited to RWD drift at half the price of the better known brands. In addition the very easy mounting, beautiful appearance and wide colour choice will suit just about any chassis scheme. Give Boom Racing by AsiaTees a try when next looking for great value, high quality hop-ups for your RC chassis.

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http://www.asiatees.com/

http://www.boomracingrc.com/

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!