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Big Jon

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  1. XV01 will probably be the most entertaining build, although the chassis really isn't very attractive. TA07 is very attractive and has some interesting features, but the build is pretty easy and doesn't take long enough. TB05 I'd rank the same as TA07, just shaft drive. I always feel like the build is complete too soon, and am always trying to stretch it out a little longer.
  2. You nailed it. I remember car-totalling glitches, getting stomped on by some guy ignoring impound, fires, molten connectors, beautiful airplanes just flying away, short runtimes, blown FETS and all the rest of it. All of the electronics issues we used to have are gone, and I don't miss them. Modern all the way unless it's pure shelf, and honestly, I'd probably put modern electronics in a shelfer because it looks better.
  3. The new SA can use Associated spurs/slipper pads, so it's easy to get a decent FDR. Mine with a 17.5 is no faster or slower than any other buggy with a 17.5. This little buggy is a peach, and somehow, more fun than a RC10 of similar vintage. Objectively, it's not as "good", and definitely cost more to be proper, but it really drives well and looks smashing.
  4. I really like the thin coats that I can get with TS or an airbrush. It really makes the body pop. Big rattle cans shoot so much paint that all of the sharpness gets lost.
  5. Novus is excellent. I started using it on pinball playfields and plastics, and have used it on Lexan, lacquer, and styrene.
  6. Are you using the stock belt or the reinforced one? The stock belt requires more tension and usually ends up "full tight" after break in, while the reinforced belt doesn't stretch much at all. You should be able to touch the belt to itself in the middle.
  7. Hobbywing has excellent spring steel turnbuckles for $0.99 a pair. They have holes for adjustment, so I use a 90° pick. I haven't been able to damage one yet, even with many hard crashes. The low-friction ball cups seem harder to pop off in a crash, and are cheap to replace when they get sloppy. Steel balls last a lot longer than aluminum balls, obviously, and stay smooth way longer, too. I've used Traxxas 4Tec 2.0 turnbuckles on a variety of builds, too, changing the ball cups of course, and they're really good but not cheap. Losi Mini 8ight turnbuckles come in a $20 set that fits a lot of off road buggies and have large adjustment hexes.
  8. A "sport" 10.5, like a Hobbywing Quicrun, would probably make you very happy. Think of it like a big, happy V-8 in a station wagon. No stress, plenty of power but not extreme, and easy to drive. A race-type 10.5, like any of those $150 motors, would be like taking that same V-8 and hot rodding it. Big cam, big heads, big carb, high compression, you know. It's way faster, can get away from you, and costs a lot more. It needs better fuel, too, so get some high-C batteries, too. "Sport" 17.5 motors are like the little four in a commuter car. Dogs, but dead reliable. They serve their purpose and definitely fill an important hole. Race 17.5s are like the hot hatch turbo fours. They're highly stressed and need to be really pushed to get good speed. They cost as much as the big race V-8, but aren't as fast, are harder to drive fast, and don't last as long. They still need that good fuel. Really tough to pick a brushless equivalent to a used brush motor. I really like sport 13.5s a lot. They're cheap, have plenty of muscle that gives me nice controllable speed, can handle 3s if I want to go really fast, work well in on-road, 2WD, 4WD, racier vintage cars, even lighter trail trucks. Four-pole motors are just too strong for my taste in anything other than trail/crawlers, monster trucks, and 4WD SCT.
  9. I use a stand-alone BEC if: The BEC in the ESC can't be adjusted to a full 6.0 or 7.4v, depending upon which servo(s) I want to use. I'm using multiple high-power servos. I'm using a monster power servo that's working hard. I'm using a lot of lights. Basically, the ESC's BEC is sufficient for race cars, runners, vintage, etc., while a auxiliary BEC is for crawlers, giant scale, and scale builds. Good higher-end ESCs have higher amp adjustable switching BECs, while more basic ESCs have lower amp linear BECs that are adequate for more modest servos.
  10. I think no spacers makes 185mm? RCMart has the driveshafts in stock.
  11. Build it and display with the box. Make it perfect.
  12. I'm stuck on low-profile servos for most builds. The Savox 1251 is more than sufficient for just about anything, although there are plenty of spendier servos out there. I use some brushless aluminum cased Turnigy low profile, mounted vertically, in my XV01. I got it for a song, and it's been exceptional.
  13. The stock diffs are a little weak for that type of abuse, but with some hop ups, you should be fine. Of course, the XV01 is made for your application and is a real champ.
  14. I really like modern electronics in vintage chassis. I get to enjoy the chassis for what it is without the hassle of unreliable vintage electronics or the worry of damaging or wearing out scarce stuff, and I enjoy the longer run times Lipos provide. I stay mild with the motor (brushed or 17.5 sensored, usually) to avoid overpowering, and spec decent digital servos. I've got 20+ models bound to one Futaba 4PX, which is 100% rock solid and very convenient, because I don't have to keep a million transmitters sorted. Nice servos and speed controls make the vintage stuff so nice to drive, so running my stuff is pure pleasure with no worries. If I have a problem, it's not the electronics and nothing catches on fire or runs away.
  15. With that power system, you should be good to go box stock, especially on tarmac.
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