Juggular

Must have Kyosho?

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Last year I saw a video of a Sand Master and thought, "maybe I should have at least one Kyosho."  

I don't have any nostalgia for Kyosho kits, which is why I never had one. 

Sand Master might be a bit toy-like? 

Which one would Kyosho drivers recommend?  (I know "Must have Tamiya" would be so vague, but I really don't know Kyosho)

Preferably inexpensive and easy to find, but chain drive on more expensive models looked interesting too.  

 

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I don’t know if you like the re-release kits, but I have an Optima, Scorpion, Tomahawk, and a ‘hang on rider’ motorcycle…all really great retro Kyosho's, but the Optima is by far my favorite, it was a 'must have' for me. The re-releases all seem to be well thought out and the kits are packaged beautifully. I ran the snot out of the tomahawk and Optima a few weeks ago on a dirt track and nothing broke, despite my 6 and 7 year old nephews crashing them into everything.

 

For newer cars, the Sandmaster is kind of an entry-level buggy and seems really ‘cheap’ to me. If you like trucks, the Mad Crusher looks like a really cool model to own. They have a brushless and a nitro version.

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If you want vintage, look for a Raider. Cheap, tough, lots of fun, and have a good '80s vibe to them. The old Ultima II/Tracker/Outrage is a good platform as well.

New, I would say the Scorpion re-re. It's a fine, well-made machine, nearly all metal, fun to drive, and not terribly expensive.

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The Scorpion/Tomahawk and Beetle are probably the cheapest Kyosho retro options that are tough and perform relatively well in the dirt. Both are great models – I’m impartial to the Optima, but it’s a bit more expensive and complex to build.

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1 minute ago, steelo said:

The Scorpion/Tomahawk are probably the cheapest options that are tough and perform relatively well in the dirt. Both are great Kyosho models – I’m impartial to the Optima, but it’s a bit more expensive and complex to build.

Second that. If you want to save some bucks, you can choose also the Beetle. Same Chassis & a nice Volks Body,even a little less expensive than the tomahawk / scorpion. 

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If I was to get a re re kyosho, I'd go with the Optima, but build it with the belt, never liked chain drive and the reason I didn't get one the first time around. 

If it's a vintage, (slightly bias here 🙄) I'd go for an Optima mid custom / custom special, great looking buggy, handle well, the FRP parts are strong and my one, even in stock form, took a beating from a 3800kv with a 3s lipo.

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What about a modern one? The Ultima RB7 has been released so the RB6.6 is on sale and is still a great buggy. It has options for rear motor, mid standup 3 gear and 4 gear, and laydown so can be setup for any conditions. It will handle anything you throw at it. If you prefer secondhand then check out the local racer forums as there will be a lot coming up for sale as people upgrade

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Optima mid for me. Beautiful car, nice bodies, good runners and if you are sensible, not too expensive to find.

Id go for a custom special with a custom shell from TBG.

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I have just finished building both a re-re optima and a re-re turbo scorpion. I would say i really enjoyed the build of both, the turbo scorpion the most rewarding especially with its unique front suspension linkages, although compared to some higher end tamiya kits i found the finish of some of the metal castings and machined parts to be a bit agricultural in places. However the bit i liked the least of all was the decals. Dear god......what a horrible experience that wad as sadly on the optima I made a complete and utter hash of it so its currently wearing a javelin roll cage i ordered. I cant believe anyone can possibly make a neat job of it and arrange the huge number of complex curves and overlapping peices into a solid colour - my suggestion would be to mask and paint the yellow and blue areas. On the turbo scorpion i ended up painting the blue bits on the body and its much better for it I but still managed to screw up some of the decals.

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The Optima Mid is a great car if you can find one that doesn't cost stupid money. Kyosho also made a lot of cars which were basically LWB Mids with alloy or FRP chassis and saloon or sportscar shells. I would guess that it might be easier and cheaper to find one of these and convert it back to Mid spec than buy a pukka second-hand Mid. There are probably quite a few about if you know what you are looking for.

I second whoever mentioned the bodies, too. The LWB Mid probably had the best looking body out of any buggy from that era. Sleek and low-slung, but still reasonably realistic looking and not bizarrely stylised, like Tamiyas such as the Manta Ray and Fire Dragon.

Other good Kyoshos, if you can find them: I had an Ultima 2, which was brilliant and I wish I hadn't sold it BITD. For some reason good ones don't seem to come up for sale very often, and I fear that is either because the people who now own them want to keep hold of them or because a lot of them have been cannibalised for parts. If Kyosho is looking for a good (and cheap for them) re-re opportunity, I imagine one of the later high-end Ultimas would be very well received.

The Lazer ZX-R is also a great car if you can find one, but avoid the original Lazer ZX as it is a dog and weighs about a quarter of a tonne.

I've just bought a second-hand Raider myself and am just embarking on the rebuild. I have started a rebuild thread which will doubtless be full of my meandering prose about how it is going, if you fancy taking that route into Kyosho ownership. It's a nice car and doesn't need much doing to it, except sorting the steering out, as it is currently a bit weird.

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I take you're looking for their classic stuff, right?

Buggies: Scorpion, Tomahawk, and Javelin. Some will mention the Optima, too.

Truggies/Monster trucks: Double Dare, Hi Rider Corvette, and Big Brute. And I'm sure some will point out the Chevrolet USA-1.

Also, the Sand Master is no toy. I have seen it, a buddy here has two. I would be very surprised if they'd be pointed as toys, specially compared with the DT line Tamiya released recently.

 

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This is one of my favorite Kyoshos, Optima Mid Custom Special (the last Optima before the Lazer). Bought it new in 1989. I sealed the drivetrain with bathroom silicone and glue. It was raced frequently and i never opened the drivetrain since it was build in 1989, no chewed up gears, i suppose the air in the drivetrain is of 1989......in my opinion this is a good example for Kyosho quality. Period electronics, Novak XXL rx, HPc esc and Kyosho LeMans 240 T Motor.IMG-20180707-WA0000.thumb.jpeg.ba80f3dc793e453866a8b9489afc56a3.jpegIMG-20180707-WA0001.thumb.jpeg.0df9b8403c1ea6fe5b247472779bc58b.jpegIMG-20180707-WA0002.thumb.jpeg.ccf369d4677dead4ed46e89b7377c9c0.jpeg

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19 hours ago, Juggular said:

I don't have any nostalgia for Kyosho kits, which is why I never had one. 

I was in the same boat but figured I'd give one a go.  I knew of Kyosho back in the 80's but they were just not readily available where I lived. 

My first was the re re Scorpion.  Was a great build so I preceded to buy a Tomahawk and Optima.  Both are still in the box waiting and I'm looking forward to building them.

Quality-wise, I have to give the Kyosho kits the nod.  Pretty much all high quality aluminum and hex head fasteners.  Instructions are nicely put together and are easy to follow.

You should give one a shot.  You won't regret it.

You can pick up an Optima re re from AMain right now for $265 shipped.  That's not far off from a MAP priced Monster Beetle and the two kits are light years apart in what you get.

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If you are looking for a vintage model, the Optima Mid.  If you are looking at a current/re-re, Turbo Scorpion.

 

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Strange that nobody mentions the Beetle? What's wrong with it? Seems i'm the only one who likes it.:lol:

Have a look at Jak Rizzo's. This thing is hot isn't it? (Sorry Jak for hijacking your piccies;-)

 

 

jak.jpg

jak2.jpg

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On 8/23/2018 at 3:47 AM, Juggular said:

I don't have any nostalgia for Kyosho kits, which is why I never had one. 

There was a time when I was only nostalgic for Tamiya. Then I learned that most people who are nostalgic for Tamiya, only feel this way due to nurture - not nature...

If Tamiya was all someone knew in the 1980s, Tamiya is what they tended to become nostalgic for. But it's worth noting that this attachment we feel was only half-caused by Tamiya's wonderful designs and being first to market with truly versatile off-road cars in 1979. The other half was caused by Tamiya's wonderful import channels, and extensive marketing reach - putting their R/C kits and spare parts in every hobby shop, and sometimes supermarkets, news agencies, and (no joke) 1:1 car dealerships.

If you go exploring, you soon realize that the other R/C buggy kits released during the 1980s are (for the most part) every bit as amazing as the Tamiya kits. Today I see them all as part of a collective "era" -  because I think it was the era (not specifically the brands) that was responsible for the intricacy and realism of the designs. The cars were a product of the ideas, technology level, and audience expectations of their time.

If Tamiya had released the (AYK) Viper, or the (Kyosho) Tomahawk or the (Marui) Hunter - in or around 1984 - every Tamiya collector on earth would have those cars in their collection. I've long since lost the ability to only love Tamiya, and not also love Kyosho, Marui, Schumacher, AYK, Hirobo, Mugen and all the rest. ^_^

My personal favourite Kyosho is the Tomahawk.

The remake Kyoshos are an easy way to enjoy something close to the vintage. Note that the vintage cars are non-interchangeable with the remakes though (there is no parts compatibility). So one day, you might pick up a vintage also. The original Tomahawk even has real window netting ;) And the original Goodyear tyres are nicer than the remakes.

H.

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Having only learnt of Kyosho myself in the TC Christmas comp giveaway, it is interesting that the Javelin doesn’t get much of a mention here?? Is it just because of price or is personal preference. It has a mostly metal construction I believe and if painting isn’t someone’s thing that’s covered to with minimal bodywork. There is hardly any YouTube clips of one ( worth watching! ) so do most sit on the shelf? Sorry to highjack this a bit Juggular but I was thinking of a Javelin if a Fighting Buggy doesn’t materialize. It would great to know how one handles dusty conditions to if anyone knows?  

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A lot of people do love the Javelin. But the pipe frame style isn't quite a universal love across the collecting spectrum, I would say, like some of the full-bodied car designs.

Like all the Kyoshos of the mid-80s, an original Javelin is worth a mint now. I'd be surprised if there aren't a few videos of the remake version on Youtube eventually. It's not a cheap buggy by any means though... Even the remake version is ~AU$500, while an original kit will be well over ~$1000 among collectors.

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9 hours ago, Hibernaculum said:

A lot of people do love the Javelin. But the pipe frame style isn't quite a universal love across the collecting spectrum, I would say, like some of the full-bodied car designs.

Like all the Kyoshos of the mid-80s, an original Javelin is worth a mint now. I'd be surprised if there aren't a few videos of the remake version on Youtube eventually. It's not a cheap buggy by any means though... Even the remake version is ~AU$500, while an original kit will be well over ~$1000 among collectors.

I have a theory about why they're so rare. The original Optima and Javelin were twins except for the body, the wheels (Javelin had plated wheels) and the price. The Javelin was about $10 more (at least here in the USA), which to a kid in the 80s (or their parents) was enough of a difference to make more people go for the Optima. You didn't spend the extra for the Javelin unless you really wanted it.

If I were to buy one of the remakes (and you're right; they' re far enough removed from the originals that re-release isn't the right term), it would be the Javelin, because it's the one I wanted back then. And I may still. But I have an original Optima already, so I'm trying to decide if it's worth it...

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On 8/23/2018 at 7:27 AM, a.w.k. said:

Bought it new in 1989. I sealed the drivetrain with bathroom silicone and glue. It was raced frequently and i never opened the drivetrain since it was build in 1989, no chewed up gears.

Nice car. Kyosho geared diffs from that era were brilliant. Their early ball diffs were awful. I wouldn't have recommended sealing the diff casing with silicone, but if it works, then who am I to argue?

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I’m building a Javelin right now and I already love it. I have a black body and wing on order, not a huge fan of the orange. I think the orange may put a lot of people off, it wasn’t until I saw it in other colors that I had to have one. 

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11 hours ago, markbt73 said:

If I were to buy one of the remakes (and you're right; they' re far enough removed from the originals that re-release isn't the right term)

Cheers for that. Yeah, I just prefer the term "remake" in all cases where it's a new model, with a new model number, a new official entry in the Manufacturer database, and there are changes to the kit (however small).

Have long felt the term "re-release" was a misnomer. It suggests an identical thing has simply been "released again". This is valid where kits are discontinued and then another batch of the same kit is produced later. Even if that new batch is years later. So long as the kit is identical.

But when the kit gets a new model number, new molds, new box art - even a new model name in some cases, to me that's a remake. Same with films that are remakes of old films (e.g. Total Recall). As opposed to an old film simply getting a fresh theatre run (that's a re-release).

I wonder if I will ever convince @TWINSET of this, or if I will always be an island... :ph34r::lol:

 

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I have both the Javelin & Scorpion remakes. Fantastic to drive superb & build quality. I fitted the belt drive when building the Javelin, although chain drives are great for nostalgia the belt is much better for running. 

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