What’s In The Box- Havoc Pro speedo, Ballistic 540 8.5 motor, zip-ties, double sided tape, instruction manual, stickers, and heat shrink tubing. What it doesn’t come with- battery connector (I recommend Traxxas), solder (for solding up the battery connector and the 3 wires to the motor), motor screws, and pinion gear.
Build Quality- No complaints here, everything in the Novak system appeared top notch quality.
Test Drivers- Cubby, Brian (The Brain), Ryan (Race’n) R.
Test Venues- Outlaw RC in Collinsville Illinois, RiverCity Raceways in Peoria Illinois, Costco parking lot, streets of a local sub-division, grassy backyard
Set-up Notes- We used the Novak in anHPI Blitz ESE. Gearing ranged from the stock spur mated to a 16 tooth pinion up to a 22. We usedMaxAmps 2S 6500 mah Race Specpacks on the Novak. We used two different radio systems, aSpektrum DX3Rand aFutaba 3 PRKA. A Hitec servo was used with the Novak.
Ease Of Use- The Novak instructions are well written making the radio calibration process very easy. Making changes to the speedo’s adjustable parameters also proved very easy. Even the newest of noobs should not have a problem setting up the Havoc Pro.
Efficiency- Ya know, I set out intending to keep “strict records” of my runtimes. What happened in the real world… was that I totally forgot about the clock while driving (can you blame me for having too much fun?). So… I can’t give precise run times.
Drivability/Feel/Powerband- The Novak Havoc Pro proved very smooth across its entire rpm range. There were no sudden surges of power, just a constant linear pull, a nice flat power curve.
Thermalling- Our test unit never thermalled during any of our testing. Our ambient temps were not extremely high (around 80 F), but we did run after run after run with no heat issues.
Cogging- I did my best to get the Novak to cog but I failed. Even applying throttle at the base of a steep jump from a dead stop I was unable to get the Novak to cog. I tried giving it gas while slowly rolling backwards, still no cogging. If you want to know what cogging is don’t buy a Havoc Pro because you’ll never find out.
Power- Our Novak system had more than enough rip to make all the jumps at the local 8th scale track as well as enough yank to pop wheelies, churn up big rooster tails, etc. For a noob the 8.5 turn system would feel extremely fast but if you are a seasoned driver looking to blow the tires off your truck you might want to look at a lower turn Novak motor.
Brakes- The Novak came with some of the best brakes I’ve driven. Normally applying the brakes hard while driving a 2wd short course truck on a slick dirt track will leave you spinning around backwards, on the Novak you simply get slowed down controllably just like you should. The Novak brakes aren’t too soft, yet not too strong, they are just right.
Fit- Novak’s Havoc Pro speedo has a small footprint allowing it to easily fit in our test HPI Blitz. Because of the tidy footprint the Havoc Pro should fit in any short course application without issues.
Time To Bash – 7.0/10-Mount the Havoc Pro speedo and the Ballistic 8.5 motor, solder up a Traxxas plug and the 3 wires to the speedo, calibrate to your radio and you are dialed.
Car Show Rating – 7.0/10– Smart looking design that was well received around the office.
Bash-A-Bility – 10.0/10-Someone wanted me to huck the speedo and motor off the roof of my house (but I resisted the urge… LOL) and kept the Novak mounted in the truck. We experienced zero issues with our Novak system. No occasional shorts, no broken fans, no issues at all.
Fun Factor – 8/10– The Novak Havoc Pro SC system provided hours of high fly’n fun. Plenty of smooth power tends to plant big smiles on the face.
Drivability – 9.0/10– The Novak was noticeably smoother than the majority of brushless speedos I’ve ever driven
Power- 7.0/10– Power is relative. If we are comparing our Novak Havoc 8.5 system to a 17.5 turn set-up then it puts out incredible power. If we are comparing our Novak system to a 6S powered 550 motor then it comes across as tame. The good news for you is Novak sells their Havoc Pro SC system in a variety of winds (read- power levels).
Value- 8.0/10– The Novak was very smooth, it put out good power, and proved very reliable at a fair price point.
Big Squid Rating – 8.0/10- Tentacles.. – Ultra smooth power, easy to use, and reliable, the Novak Havoc Pro SC system makes a great power system for your 2wd short course truck.
Since Pro-Line posted pictures of their new Big Blox tire, there are different comments about their similitudes with the Enduro tire from AKA. Some said that Pro-Line has cloned AKA’s Enduro, others said that Pro-Line simply took AKA’s famous tire and updated it.
This is not the first time such a controversy occurs. Beta tires has released AKA clone tires about one year ago. And don’t even talk about all the Bow-Tie clones (or evolution, as you wish) tires you can find on the market!
At first glance the AKA Enduro and Pro-Line Big Blox look almost the same but when looking a little bit closer, there are some major differences between both tires.
First, the lugs on the Big Blox are positioned closer to each others. The Big Blox has a low wear characteristic and its more suitable for long mains on high wear tracks, like the upcoming World Championship.
Without having track tested both tires back to back, this is quite hard to judge how the Big Blox and Enduros compare. However, several differences have been noticed:
On the Enduro, all the lugs have diagonal cuts while the lugs on the Big Blox have diagonal, vertical and horizontal cuts.
The four center lugs of the Enduro are aligned while the two external rows use smaller offset lugs. All the lugs on the Big Blox are aligned.
The Enduro has one row of chamfered lugs on the sidewall. The Big Blox has two rows of lugs.
I started driving rc cars when I was around 7 years old. Later on, I joined off-road races using my Tamiya Ford XLT and Wild Willy (original model). There were major races that had around 400 entries and I usually finished in the top 7 of my class (which would have around 200 rc cars). So I felt good about my driving abilities.
It is until i met Hardjono in Queens, N.Y. USA. It was there that I improved my driving skills by around 30%!, a professional RC racer originally from Indonesia. In the off road race track there, I drove against sponsored drivers or semi-professional drivers. They were so fast that I would usually just place in the C-main. Sometimes even the D-main.
Fortunately, I met and became friends with one of the fast drivers- Hardjono.He was consistently winning races and was semi-sponsored.
HOW TO DRIVE YOUR RC CAR 30% FASTER?
Drive Consistently, Lap After Lap
I remember one advice he gave me that I still remember to this day… "Drive Consistently, Lap After Lap."
And because of that advise, I have managed to win some big races in the Philippines because I drove consistently, even though my lap times were about 1 second slower than the others. It was just that I avoided making mistakes or crashes that would have cost me 5 – 10 seconds per incident.
Also, driving consistently and error free will calm your nerves and make you more relaxed when driving and racing.
Practicing Is Not the Secret (Better Car Setup, Smooth Driving Style)
When not racing, Hardjono and I would go to various rc tracks,just to play. I remember we found one in Connecticut, inside a school campus. It was a beautiful outdoor off-road track.
He was consistently beating me during our one-on-one racing,so we switched cars.And he still beat me! Hardjono was simply a faster driver… but he also pointed out that my rc car setup needed improvement. I also noticed that his rc car had more power when I was driving it.
How did he drive faster? I noticed that when I was coasting through corners (off the throttle), he was driving the same corner sat 1/2 or 3/4 on the throttle. So he was basically faster than me
during the corners. But you need a good car setup and driving skill to do this.
He also had a smooth driving style, slowly accelerating, slowly braking, but always trying to maintain speed through the corners by keeping his finger on the throttle (1/2 to 3/4) rather than fully lifting off the power.
Practicing One-on-One to Improve Passing and Defending Skills
During our one-on-one driving sessions, our goal was for one car to lead, the other to try and pass. We would do this for two or three laps, then reverse the position of the rc cars. That waye both managed to practice our passing skills, as well as howo defend our position from cars behind us.
Doing this for months, I eventually managed to drive fast enough sometimes get lucky and get into the A-main. And I have to thank my mentor, Hardjono, for showing me how. Practicing is good, but it is not enough. You have to know what to do, then practice.
If you thought radio controlled (RC) cars, trucks, and boats were just for kids, then you’re about to get a wake-up call. Traxxas RC vehicles give novices and pros alike the chance to burn rubber, throw some dirt, and rip the waves without any assembly. These super-fast scale models of real racing vehicles are designed with innovative technology and high-quality parts that let you soar off massive jumps, swerve through any course and even reach speeds over 160Kph! Traxxas vehicles use top quality components that are completely replaceable and upgradable, so even if a part is damaged, you don’t have to toss out the whole vehicle like other RCs, you just replace the damaged part.
Choosing the right vehicle can be tough, especially with all the options you can add. This guide was written to give you some background info on the key features of these crazy powerful machines, and to help you choose the best vehicle for you.
What is RC?
The term RC has been used to refer to both “radio-controlled” and “remote-controlled” vehicles, but the remote-controlled category also includes vehicles that have a wire that connects the remote to the vehicle, so the most common use of R/C stands for vehicles that operate by way of radio frequency link.
Types of Vehicle
Traxxas makes lots of different vehicles in three scaled sizes; 1/16, 1/10, and 1/7. From launch-controlled drag racers, to monster trucks, and on to high-powered supercars, there’s a vehicle for every level of interest and skill. Cars and trucks come in either 2-wheel drive or 4X4 depending on the model. If you’re more into aqua sport, there are also R/C boats that come fully waterproofed and ready to shred some wake. Different vehicles require more skill to handle, but each one comes with a recommended skill level badge that should help you pick the right one.
No previous experience with R/C cars is required. Level 1 models are ready-to-race and require minimum setup, maintenance, and support equipment.
Level 2 models require a higher level of setup, maintenance, and support equipment, so some previous experience with R/C cars is recommended.
These models are capable of higher speeds and need more detailed setup and maintenance with required support equipment, which makes previous driving experience and control mandatory for these R/C vehicles.
Higher levels of skilled driving control are mandatory in order to properly operate these models, which can go up to very high speeds. These R/C cars also need more detailed setup and maintenance with required support equipment.
For expert drivers as these vehicles are capable of extreme speeds and acceleration.
Traxxas Power Cell Batteries
Most R/C vehicles run on rechargeable battery packs, and there are two main types to choose from. NiMH (Nickel-Metal hydride) batteries offer good power and run times as well as good performance, but if you want to take it to the next level, you should check out the LiPo (Lithium Polymer) packs. These lighter, more powerful, and longer lasting batteries are at the top of the R/C pyramid, but are pricier and demand a bit more care when charging.
Capacity – This is the amount of charge your battery can hold. The higher the capacity, the longer you can run.
Voltage – This is the amount of power your battery can put out. The higher the voltage, the more ‘get up and go’ your vehicle will have.
The type of battery you have will dictate which charger you should use. Some charge NiMH batteries, some charge LiPo batteries, and there are even models that will charge both. Certain chargers are equipped with “Peak Detection” software which senses when the battery is fully charged and will stop charging automatically to avoid damage. This helps prolong the life of your battery while still ensuring that you get a full charge. The amount of current your charger puts out will determine the amount of time it will take to fully charge your batteries. The higher the current, the faster it will charge. Times can range from overnight to under 50 minutes depending on the model you choose. For your safety, remember to never leave your batteries unattended while charging.
Electronic Speed Controller (ESC)
An ESC manages the speed of your motor, letting you control how much power gets to the wheels or propeller of your vehicle; giving you smoother performance. Some are even equipped with ‘Training Mode’ which can cut your vehicle’s power output by 50% until you’ve mastered the controls. The ESC you choose will depend on a few factors like whether your motor is “brushed” or “brushless”, how much power your motor puts out at full throttle, and your battery’s voltage.
Motors are what make your electric R/C vehicle go, and come in two different categories; brushed and brushless. Brushed motors are relatively inexpensive and durable, yet are prone to wear due to friction and heat within the motor. Brushless motors eliminate this wear, and so are ideal for maximizing the power, speed and efficiency of your vehicle. Their higher quality means there’s virtually no maintenance, making them a bit more expensive at first, but have the potential to provide better value over time.
Servos are the muscle of your R/C vehicle. They receive the signal from the controller and steer the wheels of your car or truck, or turn the rudder of your boat. Some are more powerful and can react faster than others, so if you want to improve your vehicle’s maneuverability, upgrade the servos.
Traxxas’ wheel options give your vehicle style and performance in one beautiful package. With durable nylon construction, natural finish glue bead for fast tire gluing, and a mirrored chrome finish, any wheel you choose for your R/C car or truck will let you take corners with confidence and leap over obstacles with ease.
The tires you choose for your car or truck depend on what kind of terrain you’ll be tackling. If you’re tearing up the roads, slicks give you the most surface contact and help put that power to the pavement. Heading off-road? You may want some big knobby tires to help dig into the softer ground and give you the grip to climb over rocks and roots.
Also called controllers, these babies are what translate your driving desires into signals your vehicle can receive. Traxxas makes two main types of transmitter, TQ and TQi, which operate on either AM or 2.4GHz frequencies.
TQ Transmitters operate on the AM band at the frequency of 27MHz, and offer six unique channels. These standard transmitters still provide high-power output and trim control for the throttle and steering, but may operate at shorter ranges depending on your surroundings. The frequency limitations of the AM band also only allow a maximum of six separate transmitters to be used close to each other before the signals start to interfere.
TQi Transmitters use some of the most sophisticated features to give you tuneable, long-range, high-output 2.4GHz signal that actually connects to the receiver onboard your vehicle, allowing any number of vehicles to operate close to each other. Select models can also be equipped with an accessory Docking Base for your iPhone or iPod touch, giving you access to real-time telemetry and stats to help fine tune your vehicle’s performance. The TQi transmitters can store info for up to 30 separate vehicles, so you don’t need to switch transmitters or fiddle with settings each time.
“Ready to Run” (RTR)
Traxxas makes hobby-class R/C vehicles that bring the excitement and rush you get from ripping a real high-performance vehicle, right into the palm of your hand. Normally these types of models have to be assembled from a complicated kit, but Traxxas RTR vehicles come fully assembled out of the box, and are ready to rip after the battery is charged and installed.
Whether you’re ripping through the rain, snow or any other wet conditions, Traxxas offers lots of models that come equipped with water-tight electronics to make sure you can keep the fun going in any condition. Every R/C boat is also set up with water-proof electronics to make sure every run is a dry one.
Each model comes equipped with standard parts that will give you great results, but if want to soar to new heights or beat your best lap time, you may want to up your game. Traxxas makes upgrading easy by providing parts that connect and install with ease, giving you even more freedom to tune your ride just the way you want it. This chart shows how making various changes to the Slash 4X4 vehicle will bump up its performance. Note that changes you make to other models may have different effects on performance:
What Else Should you Consider?
A wheelie bar is a great call if you plan on punching it off the line, and especially if you opt for the more powerful brushless motor. When installed on supporting models, the wheelie bar helps prevent the vehicle from flipping over backwards when you hit the accelerator hard.
Race replica body kits
To complete the realistic package, adding a race replica body kit with officially-licenced racing graphics will transform your R/C car or truck into a sweet ride that looks just like the real thing.
Traxxas Link Telemetry Sensors
Once installed, these onboard sensors transmit real-time telemetry and data about your vehicle back to your remote for viewing on your iOS device. Just connect your iPhone or iPod touch to the Docking Base to view live stats about speed, RPM, temperature and battery voltage.
Traxxas vehicles are the number one selling RTR models on the market and bring the fun and excitement of hobby-class RC vehicles to anyone who feels the need for speed. Whether in the dirt, on the road, in the water, or in the snow, the high quality and high speed action you’ll get with any model you choose will blow you away. rcMart is the exclusive dealer in the region and it carries the whole selectionof Traxxas RC vehicles, parts and accessories, so no matter what your inner speed demon desires, we’ve got the right ride for you.
Christmas is coming and the jingle bells of Santa is ringing. You may have plans to buy a Santa Claus costume from WalMart for the Christmas night and dress yourself as Santa and want to fill up the bag with secret gifts and deliver them to your kids’ bedside while they are in their dreams. But wait a minute, do you have some surprise items to give to your kids or again the old Christmas chocolates or a boring 3D video game or the usual Christmas cards, books, and other Christmas collectibles. What else do you have in store for them? Do you have something different? Something that can make your kids totally crazy and excited! Something that they have not even thought you will give them. Come on, all these are not secret gifts. If that’s all in your mind, then I will tell you what is the best secret Santa gift for upcoming Christmas holidays.
Of course, it is an RC toy to be included in your Santa bag, which has become the best holiday gift for 2012. Now, when we talk about gifting a radio control toy, then it is better to give RC cars because within all RC model toys, the radio control cars are the most popular among kids. Moreover, RC cars are easier to control and excellent for beginners.
RC Cars for Boys
Radio control cars come in two basic forms: "toy" style cars or trucks that are advertised during cartoon shows on television and sold at electronics and toy stores, and the "kit" type cars or trucks that are sold only at specialized hobby shops or mail order companies and are available as a build-it-yourself kit or "Ready To Run". Toy-style cars are often advertised as "remote control", while hobbyists refer to kit-style cars as "radio control".
rcMart specializes in the kit-type RC car or truck, which can come assembled or in kit form, meaning the boys can build it themselves or with the family and friends. While the kit RC cars and trucks cost more at first, they are more durable and faster than toy RC cars. You can also repair this type of RC car or truck, which is usually impossible or very difficult to do with toy RC cars. The cost to repair a car or truck is only a fraction of the cost it would take to send a toy-style kit to its manufacturer (if that is even possible). You can also upgrade an RC car or truck to make it faster, stronger, more durable, more adjustable or just make it look nicer. The RC car and truck kits have optional bodies that you can replace whenever you want, meaning while you may have a street car today, you can have a street truck tomorrow, or a sedan, racing coupe, sports car, or nearly any other type of car you desire!
What type of kit should you get?
We will split up the decision-making process with these three questions: Should I get an on-road or off-road kit, Should I get a Nitro or electric kit, and Should I get an RTR kit or a kit I have to build? Read our responses to these questions and see what type of kit suits you best.
Should I get an on-road or off-road kit?
On-road kits can hit high speeds and they look like the cars you see on racetracks and streets around the world. With four-wheel drive (4WD), they are easy to drive and you can get realistic treaded tires and bodies for scale realism. However, driving off your curb or over holes in the road is not what these are designed to do.
Off-road kits feature big tires, long shock absorbers and the ability to drive just about anywhere. They can handle jumps, dirt and other typical obstacles in your backyard, vacant lot, anywhere! While some RC off-road car and truck kits are meant only for race tracks, the off road car kits are meant for both the track and field. Off road trucks are available with either two-wheel (2WD) or four-wheel (4WD) drive versions. 4WD trucks are easier to drive and can usually drive over just about anything!
Should I get an RTR kit or a kit I have to build?
"RTR" means Ready To Run, and in the case of HPI's RTR kits the only preparation that is needed requires about 30 minutes or less before you're running the car or truck. The amount of preparation needed varies from kit to kit. This option is good for hobbyists who don't have time to build a kit, want to easily add another R/C kit to the collection, or anyone who is buying a kit for a younger relative.
Any HPI kit that is not labeled "RTR" is a "kit", meaning it must be built up from parts that are included in the box. This is usually not as hard a process as it initially sounds, our instructions are extremely thorough and our kits easier to build than ever before.
*These questions and their answers should help you decide what sort of car or truck you might want to try out for your first R/C kit. As you get more involved with the hobby, you may find that your first car isn't keeping up with your interests, or you have found a new group of friends to race with, or a new area to play in. For instance, your HPI street car is lots of fun in the school parking lot, but it can't drive through the field next to the school, so you might decide to pick an HPI truck that can run off-road. Many hobbyists have several cars so they can play on any type of terrain or surface! Start with one and see how you like it first, though.
Where can I run or race a car or truck?
Part of the process in deciding what type of kit you get should involve the area you have around you, where you can run a car or truck. Cars generally need a paved surface to run on, open parking lots such as schools, churches, office areas, etc., provide plenty of space to play on. (Make sure to ask permission if you need to!) With trucks, the type of surface doesn't matter too much because they can drive on pavement, dirt, gravel and all types of ground. Long grass isn't the best place to run in, but for short periods of time it is okay for the truck. Open fields, vacant lots, construction yards and other places are perfect places to run or race a truck. Again, make sure to ask permission if it's private property!
Review of Yeah Racing Conversion Kit for Tamiya TT01 by RC Racer
Blue is most definitely more bling when it comes to this upgraded TT-01. Witha full package of alloy from the guys at Yeah Racing, Racer treats the Tamiya chassis to one hell of a makeover
Tamiya’s TT-01 is a 1:10 scale shaft-driven RC chassis featuring independent double wishbone suspension, with proven handling and performance. Since its release in 2003,Tamiya’s TT-01 has become a very popular entry-level chassis for on-road, drift and rally applications. The bathtub molded chassis combined with the central driveshaft makes it a durable four-wheel drive car for everyday surfaces, and the relatively light weight plastic chassis and mounting positions for the battery and motor gives it a low centre of gravity.
Yeah It’s Blue
Out of the box it’s an adequate introduction to the RC hobby but many owners wish to upgrade it’s potential soon after purchase. There’s been a wealth of models based on this chassis and a glut of after market upgrades from Tamiya’s own Hop Up Options series through to many specialist companies offering aluminium components in all colours and qualities which are available to further improve it’s performance.
Such a company specialising in this area is Yeah Racing. Based in Hong Kong, their ever-increasing range of conversion kits and option parts covers many manufacturers including of course Tamiya. We received their blue anodised set CK-TT01/E to add to Tamiya’s latest release the Toyota GT86. The full-size model features two-litre Boxer engine and has been produced in a joint collaboration with Subaru that has just been released into the market. So the package includes a comprehensive set of replacement parts and we recommend some care is taken familiarising the correct part applicable to the TT-01E as there’s some extra items that only fit the
original TT-01 model. An instruction manual is included which is very useful if retro fitting the parts or indeed assembling the chassis instead of using the Tamiya kit supplied parts.
First up are the prop shaft couplings and the very lightweight centre shaft and just these three parts alone transform the standard black look dramatically. Next come the rear wishbones and uprights which are simple to fit and extremely well made. Blue anodising is not everyone’s favourite (although most of even the TRF Option parts are this colour) so Yeah Racing offer a pink set as an alternative. Replacement dampers are supplied fully assembled and ready to fit and these alternative pistons offer even more fine-tuning and these are complimented by three spring options– hard, medium and soft. Certain parts are fixed with cap head screws rather than self-tapping so care must be taken to ensure they are not over-tightened. Other Tamiya hardware gets used throughout the build and occasionally some screws need longer versions particularly if retro fitting as the plastic has already been stressed on initial assembly. Some Tamiya TT-01E kits benefit from overseas bonus parts in certain countries and ball races are an important addition for smooth running and long life. The Toyota GT86 doesn’t – this kits bonus parts are a set of plated wheels! Fortunately in the Yeah conversion set, they have covered this point and include a fullest of bearings for the transmission and steering parts.
Faster and Smoother
The rotating mass of the standard kit drive train parts is quite high so it was interesting to compare with the conversion alloy parts. The alloy options were a tighter fit all round and with less weight, there will be some improvement in efficiency as well as in addition to the ‘bling’ look! Make sure you fit the front uprights the right way up else you will have to take them all apart to rectify – no, we got them right first time. All of the location points for axle pins and shafts are bushed and spacers make for a very close tolerance on the important areas. The C-clips retain them which is a big improvement over the standard self tapping pins which can pull out with repeated maintenance or repair.
Overall the combination of the latest Tamiya TT-01E and it’s finery of swanky blue alloy parts certainly makes an impressive ‘Shelf Queen’ which we are going to finish with the sleek Toyota GT86 body set. Finish off with electrics and radio and you’re nearly there. The kit includes an electronic speed controller (TEU 105BK) so just a reasonable steering servo, receiver and NiMH battery are required. Recent Tamiya saloons have had the facility to incorporate fashionable LED lighting units but are not compatible with this Toyota. An inner Lexan light bucket (molding)is supplied for both front and rear light clusters but LEDs just don’t fit! For racing you could opt to omit them and just use the decal on the outside of the body. Yes, we know it doesn’t look perfect scale but saves keep sticking the innards back on! Separately molded wing mirrors need to be finished in the body colour too.
Race Spec GT86
Real cars are already in competition use and I’m sure it wont be long before a JGTC version appears complete with oversized rear wing. The Toyota GT86 is quite a bland shape in road going form but of course most of Tamiya’s 1:10 bodies (and others) can be mated to theTT-01E chassis. We found a reasonable good looking touring car wing in the spares box to give the GT86 a moreracey look to complement the racing chassis parts! The conversion is manufactured by Yeah Racing but is sold and distributed by RC Mart (www.rcmart.com).
Review of Yeah Racing Conversion Kit for Tamiya TT01 by RC Racer
Review of Yeah Racing Conversion Kit for Tamiya TT01 by RC Racer
Review of Yeah Racing Conversion Kit for Tamiya TT01 by RC Racer
For drifting in RC, basically you need a perfect balance between slip and grip. RC cars have to drift through the corners, while you also want control of that drift. RC drifters usually tune grip in or out by changing the way the chassis transfers weight i.e more grip up front equates to more steering. This is the basis of chassis tuning. All adjustments require a properly set up RC car. No bad bearings, nothing binding, droop is equal side to side (not necessarily front to back), ride height is equal side to side, camber is equal side to side, etc. These set up changes should be made one at a time so that any change can be noted. It is also best to start with a fresh kit and work from there. Believe it or not, RC companies do put R&D into this and provide the most beneficial all-around setup for kits.
Things to adjust when your car is UNDERSTEERING (no particular order)
TIRES/CAMBER (for Yokomo drift rings)
More camber in the front
Less camber in the rear
Increase droop in the rear
Decrease caster angle
Increase Ackerman angle
Decrease in the front
Decrease in the rear to account for low speed understeer
Increase in the rear to account for high speed understeer
For Ball Diffs
Loosen front ball diff
Tighten rear ball diff
For Front One-Ways
Tighten rear ball diff
For Center One-Ways
Loosen front ball diff
Tighten rear ball diff
For Rear Spool (or Direct Drive for Tamiya Fans)
Loosen front ball diff
For Front Spool (or Direct Drive for Tamiya Fans)
Tighten rear ball diff
ROLL CENTER/CAMBER LINKS
Adjust inner camber link position more towards the center of the chassis i.e. longer camber link, in the front
Adjust camber link so that it is more level, in the front
Lower Shock Position
Move inward towards the chassis on the front
Move outward away from the chassis in the rear
Upper Shock Position
Make shock more laid down in the front (may be source of contention. I know in grip, laying it down more generally reduces body roll as the car turns. However, drifting has less grips, so I think the more progressive feel of a laid down shock may give more grip, can someone verify?)
Make shock more vertical in the rear
Softer springs in the front
Stiffer springs in the rear
Thinner oil in the front/Larger piston holes in the front
Thicker oil in the rear/Smaller piston holes in the rear
Thicker anti-roll bar in the rear
Thinner anti-roll bar in the front
Lower ride height in the front
Higher ride height in the rear
Things to adjust for OVERSTEER
Opposite of everything listed above
HOW TO ADJUST SECTION
Always the first thing to look at. Even with a great setup, tires can ruin it. For competitions, tire choice is often controlled to level the playing field and make it more of a drivers competition. In general, radials (rubber tires) offer more grip, while plastics offer less.
Yokomo Drift Rings
With these tires, camber should always be your first stop in gaining or loosing grip. In general, more camber means more grip, as the majority of the contact patch become rubber.
With ABS, many people say to run 0 camber. However, more experienced drivers will tell you to have at least negative 0.5 degrees camber all around.
Droop is often misunderstood and confused with downstop settings. Droop is the measure of travel of the chassis from its static position, to its most extended position (see Figure XX). The downstop setting alters how much downtravel you’re A-arms will experience. It is set by turning the screw in the A-arm (see Figure XXX). Therefore, altering ride-height and the downstops effect droop.
Adding droop on one end will increase grip on the other. So, if you are experiencing lots of off-throttle under-steer, you can increase your rear droop. Confused? As you let go of the throttle, weight shifts forward. By allowing the rear of the chassis to travel more upward (equates to more droop), you allow more weight to be transferred to the front tires, giving more steering. Droop can be a powerful setting, and if not properly set left to right (not necessarily front to back), you can end up with a chassis that does not handle equally left to right.
Caster describes the angle between the king pin and the vertical (see Figure XXX). It actually leans the tire in the direction of the turn. More caster will lean the tire more in the direction of the turn. This, along with camber effects the tires contact patch. Too much or too little lean will minimize or maximize the contact patch. However, in general, more caster will yield a smoother turning car, with less initial turn-in. Less caster will give you car with sharp turn in. This is why you see many off-road cars with caster angles of up to 25º. Less initial turn-in means less looping out on loose dirt. It is adjusted by changing out the C-hubs in the front (most likely have to be purchased separately).
See “Tires” section
Refers to the Ackerman angle, which is the angle difference between the wheels as they turn-in. The inner wheel will always have to turn in more than the outer wheel. As you turn in more and more, the difference between these two angles increase. This is usually adjusted on the steering turnbuckle connection on the front hub (see Figure XXX). A more angled connection will yield less Ackerman, and vice versa. For low grip conditions, it is generally recommended to more Ackerman
Refers to the width of the car, measured from the outside of each wheel (see Figure XXX). Wider is better, right? For stability, yes, sharp turn in, no. A narrow front track width will increase the front grip and steering. A narrow rear track width will increase steering on the front end at low speeds, and increase grip at the rear at high speeds.
Front One-Way: Just as described, the front wheels are only allowed to turn one-way. A one-way bearing in the diff prevents the tire from spinning backward. While on power, both front wheels get equal power (no differential action). Off-power, the front wheels free spin on their own accord. This give high initial turn-in, and allows you to really pull through the exit of a turn, as both front wheels are applying maximum power to the ground. Breaking becomes an issue, as the nature of the one-way does not allow breaking to effect the front wheels. In effect, its like yanking the e-brake on a car. With out proper attention, this causes the car to loop out much easier, and makes it twitchier at speed. Generally those who run a front one-way will run a very loose rear ball diff if not already running a spool.
Center One-Way: Like the front one-way, but only disconnects the front and rear wheels from each other. A ball diff would still be used up front, so there is differential action. Yields a much milder initial turn-in, and braking is not as much of a concern.
Ball differential: Typically run tighter up front than the rear. Looser in the front translates into better transitioning left to right, and looser in the rear translates into less transitioning left to right.
Spool (direct-drive for the Tamiya fans!): A locked differential. Literally, it’s a solid axle. Generally used in the rear for drifting. Typically, locking the rear would cause an understeering situation as the inner wheel is not allowed to rotate slower through a turn. However, with drifting, allowing both wheels to put equal power to the ground allows the rear end to break loose easier.
There are two different types of Differentials; a gear-style diff and a ball-style diff.
Gear diffs are comprised of a series of gears that transfer power from the input shaft to the wheels. Gear diffs are inexpensive to produce and can be quite durable, so you will find them in alot of RTR or Monster Truck vehicles. Gear diffs are also not externally adjustable. Adjusting a gear diff means removal from the vehicle and adding different viscosities of fluid to limit slip.
Balls diffs are more of an upgrade, or competition style diff. They use small balls and rings to limit slip. The more you tighten down the ball diff, the more pressure it takes to slip. Ball diffs do require a bit more maintenance, but can be externally adjusted to help the performance of your vehicle.
What is a OneWay Differential?
The One Way Differential simply removes diff action from the front of the car. You will no longer have a ball style differential in the front of your car. Instead, the ‘OneWay housing’ uses two (sometimes 4) ‘OneWay’ roller bearings that spin in one direction. Once your input shafts have been installed, the roller bearings will only allow them to spin in one direction…HOPEFULLY forward!!!
Tuning with a Differential
This one is pretty basic. Looser diff: low-traction tracks. Tighter diff: high-traction tracks. A tighter diff will allow more instant throttle response and greater acceleration.
All cars have their own adjustment rule. On most cars, there is a standard setting for the lightweight diffs and a standard setting for the steel diffs to make sure they work their best. As you tighten the diff bolt, make sure you tighten it down to where it is fully compressed, but DO NOT OVERTIGHTEN! This is extremely important. Once compressed, follow the manufacturers settings – no more, no less. Run the car for a complete pack, and re-check the diff setting.
In offroad, you want the diff as loose as possible without slipping. If you land off a jump and hear a ‘barking’ sound, your diff is too loose and you should tighten it up slightly.
Tuning with a OneWay Differential
Changing to the OneWay Diff is fairly simple. For the OneWay Diff, it requires you to remove the front Diff out of your car and slide the OneWay assembly in it’s place. All OneWays come pre-assembled…you will have to attach the gear and the outdrive cups.
For a OneWay Pulley, it’s a matter of removing the stock Pulley and just sliding this in it’s place. The OneWay Pulley also come pre-assembled.
The OneWay Diff allows the front wheels to free-spin (off power), giving you a much better cornering ability. This is because the front tires will not be fighting each other through the turn. You will, however, need to change your setup and driving style. Setup changes will include (possibly) a stiffer front spring, maybe heavier front oil, a softer rear spring or softer rear oil. As far as driving style, you will have to change that to a smoother, flowing style. No longer can you full throttle into a corner, slam the brakes, and power out of it! It does take some getting used to, but it is by far a much faster way around the track.
OneWay Diffs are recommended mostly on high bite tracks. The exception to this rule might be carpet, as the aggressiveness of the OneWay might be a bit too much.