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Bwaaatch

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  1. Comical sand scorcher was my first thought like everyone else, but I’m also intrigued by your suggestion of a 959, which of course is essentially from the same mould as a beetle, but seldom seems as naturally amusing due to it’s more hi-tech heritage. But I can picture it! Copped up like @Willy iine’s scorcher, and perhaps released alongside the legendary original Tamiya 959? Screw it, let’s go for a Celica / 959 comical combo. Amazing!
  2. The window stickers are semi transparent, so the masks are to mask the inside. I also found it a little confusing figuring out what would be covered by opaque sticks versus what would show through in certain places. This is specially true in that you will want to trim some of the yellow areas off the stickers if you are painting it your own colour (eg around windows). You may find the masks are actually a little too big. So take your time. I’m still working on my King Melon.
  3. So nice to hear that others on this site enjoy this hobby with their kids. So much for them to learn, and so much fun! And count me in for a Mini 4wd themed cafe. First customer right here!
  4. WISH I cool run some properly, but lacking time and infrastructure. Been meaning to get along to a meet up of these guys, but they've been inactive since covid, which is probably sensible: https://mini4wd.uk I have a two lane track that doesn't get much use, but glad to have it. It lived with a nephew for past 7 year, but i just borrowed it back now my daughter is old enough to enjoy it. Been getting her into the awesome carton (great fan subtitle here: ) Also, I simply don't build them as much as I used to (except with daughter). I like them all neatly boxed up :-) Hopefully https://mini4wd.uk comes alive again soon and i can consider having a first proper go at racing.
  5. Typical, this thread reminded me to go and check in on buyee, and now I'm a lot poorer :-( On the plus side, I have a set of metallic dash warriors on the way! Like this (but cost a bit more in 2021 money, this listing is from the 2000s, but has nice pics): https://www.hlj.com/racer-mini-4wd-memorial-box-1-metallic-plated-bod-tam94615 Still overall, the price I've paid for these is not much more than more modern non-limited reproductions.
  6. Big Mini 4wd drive fan here … I've recently started buying direct from japan using buyee.jp, an auction proxy service. Setup very easy (login with Apple, FB etc) and you get access to MUCH cheaper base prices for new and vintage kits. You add a small markup, plus shipping and handling (then tax once it it hit UK shores). If you are buying 4 or 5 at once, I think it makes good sense, with prices similar to Manchester Model shop, but a much wider choice, and access to some special edition stuff. You can bid (or buy) from Yahoo, Rakuten and others. You have to search in Japanese (I find translations of car names here: https://mini-4wd.fandom.com/wiki/Mini_4wd_Wiki). Bought about 20 cars so far, and service and easy of use is good. I'm sure other services like this exist, but this one gets my approval and was far less troublesome than I anticipated. Fast delivery too (days, not weeks). Here's an example of something that I found impossible to get hold of any other way; https://buyee.jp/item/yahoo/auction/s1001623141 . It's a limited edition only available as a prize in video arcades in Asia. Currently sits at £13. with all the fees, that might become £25 as part of a batch. But it's a rare item, and that's not much of a premium over retail stuff in the UK. I use Manchester Model Shop for more regular new releases or smaller orders. They're great.
  7. A note that you can dial down the power for kids using most modern transmitters, including a flysky gt3c. So no need for programme card for that. It’s an easy setting to switch on the fly. It’s called ‘end point adjustment’. Stick it down to 30% and your investment is pretty safe!
  8. Good spot there! And the instruments certainly echo the original, too. Haven’t heard anyone mention the helmet, but for me Perry needs visor. The addition of the visor heralded more of a hi tech age of racing cars, and the original Avante tapped into that. This version of Perry has more of a seventies vibe, plus he very much appears asleep at the wheel. So, my first upgrade will be a proper head from an original Avante.
  9. The Avante name stands for several things, but I think in RC circles it means a beautiful aerodynamic body, high tech materials and construction, and an ambition for success on the track. In Mini 4wd terms, the same is true (and the Avante mk2 represented a significant technological overhaul of that hobby, while numerous special editions come with race-ready tech). Unfortunately, recent RC Avantes have been embarrassing, as in many people’s eyes they missed the mark on all three of the criteria above. My point is that there is nothing wrong with being inspired by Mini 4wd, as long as the core ethos is not ditched in the process. We need to get back to a point where Avante means ambition, technology and beauty whenever it breaks cover. RC Avantes have recently fallen short. Avante = ‘Forward’. Hope we see that reflected here. Side note, not sure that ‘Being nuts is neat!’ Is that sensitive a statement these days, but you could argue it’s celebrating difference in a positive way. I’m gonna go with that 😁
  10. This is unquestionably correct. If you look in-between second 3 and second 7 of the video, you also see 'Being nuts is neat' in reflecting off another surface at the back of the car. Maybe actually a shadow not a reflection, it's right there. I'm super excited … as long as I try to block the Aero Avante form my mind …
  11. This is very common in this chassis, and I lost a lot of screws before deciding that something must be done! Have a hunt for some other threads that offered options, but for me the best route was a GPM set of upper arms like this: https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/GPM-Steel-Anti-Thread-Turnbuckle-Tie-Rod-6pcs-Set-For-Tamiya-WR02-Hop-Up-Parts/112063880532 One set of the above let me fix two chassis, which sounds like what you need. They’ve both been fine ever since. Other solutions seem to involve either glue or drilling the hole to make it big enough to accept a ball end attached with a nut at the end, rather than relying on the self tapping ball ends that clearly shake themselves loose.
  12. Would be interesting to hear from Japanese customers on this topic. My sense is that Tamiya are very engaged with customer in Japan on some topics (look at the huge Mini 4wd events, even a phone app/game) but that they don’t seem to do much to reach international customers. English website has been a joke since forever, and local distributors are entirely b-to-b. Smaller more recent players need to innovate on these fronts, but Tamiya apparently does not, for the many good reasons outlined above. A shame though. Feels like growth should be possible. We all know that people seeing the products out in the wild leads to big smiles and lots of curiosity. But there is no lightning rod to focus that in a 21st century commercial context (outside Japan)
  13. Having recently signed up with buyee.jp to get better access to hard to find Mini 4wd items, today I took delivery of my first consolidated package of items won in various Japanese auction sites (mainly yahoo and mercari). Buyee is like an auction middle man for Japanese sites that don’t allow international shipping. I have to say I recommend it, and everything was made very simple despite the fact that there are a lot of moving parts in this kind of transaction. Essentially I bought or won all of these by bidding in English through the buyee site, including using snipe options. Everything I wanted, I won — and at good prices. You can then tick a few boxes and have them package everything together. From that point, the whole package was with me in 5 days time. total cost = auction price + 500yen buyee fees + postage to buyee warehouse + any extra insurance + any extra packaging (very well bible wrapped) + ‘consolidation fee’ + my choice of international shipping supplier (they listed four or five options at different prices). So it’s hard to say if you’ve really saved money, but I THINK I have, and I’ve bought some things that are essentially impossible to find or ridiculously priced in ebay. Also worth noting that lots of things on yahoo auctions pass my standard for being a NIB, but are sold (with humble apologies) as slightly second rate because the box has a small scuff or has been … opened! The price drops accordingly, and I am happy 😃 So.. what did the postman bring me… A nice set of Mini 4wds relating to the ‘Dash Yonkuro’ manga/anime. In other words, from the subset of cars classed as ‘Dash Warriors’ or related factions. Most of these are special editions, limited runs or, in the case of two of them, only ever available as prizes in arcades. One is from a mail-in coupon collecting thing for Metz Cola. It’s important here to shout out Stefan at www.manchestermodelshop.co.uk for all your UK Mini 4wd needs. I go to him for recent releases, including some rarer stuff. But you have to go to Japan (or maybe Indonesia or the Philippines) for the really special models, especially once they are no longer in print. Sorry, long post, here’s a pic … Packaging great, everything as described despite coming from 8 different sellers. Happy customer. Side note: look at that Liberty Emperor (orginal design from Early 90s, and about a dozen others designed in a similar fashion). I think it would have made a great 1/10 buggy… but somehow Tamiya has separated 1/10 and 1/32 scale almost completely at that point, so we missed out 😞
  14. Couple of things… I recently bought one of the chinese 1/32 buggies linked to by @Biz73 and can kind of recommend them. Super fun, very light, superprisingly stable, but one of my two has dodgy steering. Second point, I’ve recently got into using a Japanese auction buying service specifically to get Mini 4wd stuff — for items where the price charged by uk or US seller or importers just see crazy higher. You have to factor in a small fee (500 yen), plus delivery and your local taxes, but I think there are decent savings over some of the stuff on eBay. Plus WAY more choice, and the wonderful Japanese habit of really packaging things well. Anyway, I’m using buyee and you can see some WW Jrs here. https://buyee.jp/item/search/query/ワイルド ウイリス Jr?translationType=1&suggest=1 ps, I get my translations for specific models from https://mini-4wd.fandom.com/wiki/Wild_Willy_Jr. Cos you need to search in Japanese.
  15. Sorry, one cannot simply IGNORE that Korg! SV-2? Delicious!
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