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BuggyGuy

BuggyGuy builds a TRF201XR - from parts

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This thread will document my TRF201XR new build.

Other than in the US, the TRF201XR was never sold as a complete kit, but as a conversion for standard 201s and DN01s instead.TamiyaUSA did do their own bundle with a 201, the XR conversion kit, and a set of Big Bores in a single box though it was never an "Official" kit in the strictest sense.

For those that don't know, the XR is a chassis conversion for a standard 201 that changes out the tub chassis for an aluminium plate, and increases the wheelbase of the car. It was designed to work with the follow-on XM conversion kit as well, but it's worth noting that the 201 converted to an XR and then an XM is quite a bit different to a TRF201XMW that was released a short time later.

I don't have a donor 201 I'm willing to part with, so this build will be done entirely from NIP spares and hop-up parts + a new box XR conversion kit. This build will be raced and won't be spending its life on a shelf - well not until I run out of spares anyway!

 

So we begin... Starting with an XR conversion kit in box, and a large box full of 201 parts:

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The conversion kit includes the chassis plate, side guards, and all the hardware to attach it to the front and rear of a 201. A body that will fit the XR, XM, XMW and the 211XM is also included.

 

Other essentials for the build (or pretty much any build!):

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Instructions are pretty thin, and not quite up to the usual standard you'd expect from  Tamiya - though as this is very racer orientated conversion I'm sure they're quite sufficient. The numbers on the steps correspond to the equivalent step from a standard 201 manual:

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Main chassis plate:

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Surprisingly the side pods/guards appear to be machined from what I assume is Delrin, they feel very strong and rigid:

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More to follow!

 

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All the parts from the XR conversion together, plenty of the lovely blue:

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Step 1, mounting the side guards, they are secured with lock nuts rather than threading into the plastic itself:

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Next we attach the first hop-up; rear suspension mount XA, this provides 3.5 degrees of rear toe with the stock hubs (more on that later!) and replaces the stock plastic block. The XR conversion provides the blue aluminium spacer to go underneath. This spacer might not be needed once we get to setting up the car but is going on for now as it can be easily removed later:

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Next up we add the posts to the chassis that will allow the front and rear top plates to mount to the main chassis:

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The 4 smaller posts can be substituted with a resin alternative that's also supplied with the XR conversion kit:

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Of course I went for the blue ones! They feel like they weigh a small amount more, and I guess they will have slightly different flex characteristics to the resin ones. I would have got the scales out, but I've recently moved house and haven't found them yet!

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A black plastic antenna mount was also attached toward the rear of the chassis in this step, though this may well get removed depending on the reciever that ends up in this car.

The 3 large front posts are all keyed to the chassis to make the fit feel very secure. All of these parts will be getting a bit of threadlock, but I'll be doing that near the end in case any changes are needed before that point.

 

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Next up we have the first part from a stock 201 kit; the rear top plate. This comes from the L-parts tree. The 201 L-parts are carbon reinforced, but you often see the DN01 L-parts being sold as 201 originals - they are from the same mould but are not carbon reinforced. 4 O-rings are provided in the conversion kit to sit between the top plate and the 4 aluminium posts. We also need a packet of the hard 8mm hex head ball connectors here and a couple of 1mm spacers from the spacer kit in the first post of this thread to get them to the right height. You could get away with a standard 5mm ball stud as a substitute - as that what comes with the DN01 out of the box, but this doesn't feel like the kind of build to compromise on...

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Next up, rear wishbones.

Standard stainless steel suspension pins are going to be used here, but with the addition of the fluorine coated suspension balls:

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A choice had to made for the rear arms, I don't have any original 201 rear arms, but do have a set of DB01 arms, and a set from a 501X. The 501X arms are insanely tough and a very common upgrade for these cars - so I'll be using them here

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These are held onto the chassis with the rear suspension mount from the J-parts tree, this one is a non-reinforced version to be used as a placeholder until it's aluminium replacement arrives:

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The blue aluminium spacer is provided in the XR conversion, and at this stage the mount is held in place with a single short screw that'll get swapped out once the gearbox case and motor guard get mounted.

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Next up - rear hubs, and no I'm not following the order in the instructions as they assume you're converting a completed 201 :D

Firstly we have the parts, I've gone for a set of 0.5 degree aluminium rear hubs, I'll be putting these on the opposite sides to what's instructed in the hop-up instructions. When fitted in this manner and combined with the XA (3.5 degree) suspension block we should end up with 3 degrees of rear toe-in.

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The aluminium hubs come with an alternative outer bearing, a couple of spacers and a pair of 8mm hex head ball connecters.

I won't need the supplied ball connector and spacer as I'm going with the  hopup adapter for aluminium hubs, these aren't an essential - but they were in the parts bin, and they don't fit anything else...

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The hubs are held onto the arms with the 2 longest stainless steel pins found in #53825, and secured with the 2.6x5mm titanium screws.

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Above shows the hub without the hub adapter, below shows it with:

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Bit of an aside: The aluminium rear hubs are hard to find these days at acceptable prices. A good alternative are the XV01 carbon reinforced rear hubs, or the reinforced rear hubs from a 501x or its brethren (hard to find these now). The stock 201 hub isn't upto much as is one of the most common parts to break (and you won't find a new one if you do break it). A standard XV01 hub is a better part to fit than the stock part on any 201/DN01 (as long as you sink additional grub screws into the free holes around the ball stud).

Another alternative could be the Yeah Racing aluminium 3 degree hubs for the XV01, but I haven't tried these yet (one for a future build maybe).

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Great build on what will surely be a unique and awesome car.  Looking forward to watching this one continue to take shape!

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Next up we have a quick jaunt up to the front of the chassis to fit an L part: 

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Rubber sealed bearing here from RCBearings

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Next up, we build a diff, I wanted a ball diff for this car as it's a rear motor buggy.

TRF201 diff parts are a mixed bag for availability, you can't get a diff screw or T-nut new these days, but they're the same as a FF03, and also a TD4 diff nut, bolt and spring will fit. Diff halves are hard to get as full metal items, the most basic FF03 diff outputs are plastic, the DN01 diff outputs are part metal with some plastic. You can get FF03 diff outputs in hardened aluminium - but UK/EU availability isn't great. Tamiya diff balls are expensive as well if you want them in anything but steel.

As I would like to keep my 201s running for many years, and parts availability is only getting worse, I wanted to try an alternative ball diff for this build so I'm just going to use a TD4 diff, with the diff nut hopup, and combine it with Tungsten Carbide balls from Avid (I've found these to be excellent in other race cars).

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I always thouroughly degrease diff parts, as they often come covered in an oily residue left over from the machining process (all this muck came off 1 diff half):

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The main gear for the TD4 diff is from exactly the same mould as the reinforced 201 diff gear so no problem with mesh etc, but the shoulders on the diff outputs are further away from the diff rings, meaning a wider gearbox case will be needed (more on this later).

I have always used AE black grease for thrust races, and Hudy diff lube for everything else so will do that again here:

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Not a lot of pictures for the next steps as building a diff and taking photos at the same time is beyond me!

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And then as if by magic, it was complete:

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It's absolutely silky smooth, and I've got some of pink dust bobbins leftover from another build to use.

 

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9 hours ago, BuggyGuy said:

The main gear for the TD4 diff is from exactly the same mould as the reinforced 201 diff gear so no problem with mesh etc, but the shoulders on the diff outputs are further away from the diff rings, meaning a wider gearbox case will be needed (more on this later).

I think you made the same experience as I did on my TRF201 transmission conversion for my King Cab/Hilux Monster Racer.

The distance between both diff output bearings  of the TD4 ball diff is identical with the TA06 gear diff, but further apart than on the TRF201 ball diff.

So TRF201 diff outputs or a wider gearbox is needed…and both options are available :)

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Wow, such a creative and well-planned build @BuggyGuy. I loved building my DN01, and it's cool to see a hopped-up 201 coming together.

 

What are you planning for paint? TRF colors?

 

 

 

 

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2 hours ago, Room335 said:

Wow, such a creative and well-planned build @BuggyGuy. I loved building my DN01, and it's cool to see a hopped-up 201 coming together.

What are you planning for paint? TRF colors?

Thanks, It's been a lovely build so far, looking forward to building the TRF211XM to follow - which will hopefully be a bit easier to do as it's a complete kit rather than a tub of spares!

Not sure on paint yet, I normally go for primarily white on my race cars with a splash of silver or blue, but I'm going to try something different this time. I don't have the skills to do a proper TRF paint job, but I'm thinking of doing silver into white at the front, a neon pink bit in the middle, and then blue fading into black at the back, so it's kinda TRF inspired, but hopefully much simpler to execute with rattle cans!

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Next up, rest of the gearbox and slipper:

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The DB01 slipper plates and the TA06 idler shaft are the main improvements over the stock 201.

A 3Racing FF03 counter gear provides a high quality substitute for the TRF FF03 lightweight counter gear, and clutch parts were sourced from a DN01 hopup slipper kit which is identical to the 201 kit item.

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Slipper components with the alternative counter gear and some 7mm O-rings from TTP used to help retain the counter gears mounting pin:

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Reinforced idler gear with the lightweight TA06 idler shaft, and the assembled topshaft: 

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Shapeways 3D printed gear case that can accommodate the slightly wider TD4 ball diff or the TA06 gear diff:

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And ready to fit to the best 201 motor plate, this one has the best fit with the 201 spur gear cover:

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All assembled:

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And then mounted:

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At this point we have to crack open a pack or reinforced B parts to get the motor cover:

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47 minutes ago, BuggyGuy said:


Shapeways 3D printed gear case that can accommodate the slightly wider TD4 ball diff or the TA06 gear diff:

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Thank god there was @ThunderDragonCy, who designed this masterpiece ;)

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Onto the steering assembly, the hardest part to get for this was the steering posts, and the correct servo saver spring - luckily Tamico came to the rescue! The only alternative if you can't source the BB31 steering post is to source the TRF racing steering set (mega rare / expensive).

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I use a 4mm flanged lock nut on the top of the steering post of my other 201s to compress the servo saver spring, so I'm looking thr same on t his build as well.

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The other steering post is a simple 3mm shaft, but it's a bit of an odd length at 33.4mm:

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All assembled:

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Bearings then get added to the top of the steering posts:

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Followed by a small plate to keep everything in place when your taking the front of the car apart for repair or setup changes:

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Next up we have some more of the  reinforced plastics:

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4 screws pin the tower to the top plate, and 2 hardened hex head ball connectors with some spacers underneath are attached for the front camber links to hang off:

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Managed to get some reinforced front suspension arms for this build, we need to get the front bulkhead attached to the chassis plate to enable the top plate to be clamped down. Titanium screw used here to retain the hinge pins and front brace:

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A single screw is used to secure the bulkhead to the chassis plate, with 4 additional screws passing through the bulkhead and into the front top plate:

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The 4 screws that help retain the bulkhead, also hold on the bumper plate:

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Great build man!!!! I was all in with the 801s when these came out! I’m playing catch up now that I love where there’s no 1/8 tracks! Following with enthusiasm!

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