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Saw these on ebay and took a punt!

The towerpro mg995 was notorious for being inaccurate and overshooting. It's clones were the same.

The 996R has been vastly superior in my experience and is a bargain from places such as Hobbyking.

There are also clones out there for as cheap as £13 for 4 but they also work very well usually with the only noticeable difference being that they have a brass bushing instead of a bearing.

I've never seen them as cheap as £6.99 for 4 before so I've ordered some. I'd be amazed if they were genuine but like I say, the clones seem to work ok anyway so even 4 clones for £6.99 would be amazing!

I'm pretty sure it's a listing error but they are apparently on their way and could be delivered today.

I'd be very surprised if I get 4, even for copies it's ridiculously cheap but fingers crossed! They aren't the best servos in the world but for the price they are pretty tough and hard wearing and the 996 doesn't seem to be plagued with the awful inaccuracy of the older 995.

I'll report back when they arrive and if there's 4, I'll post a link.

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Well, look at that!

20190704_111944-1365x1024.thumb.jpg.9ee7f2b48fd4df4642611ceb7d611ea0.jpg

4 servos! 

They are definitely the "clone" ones with the brass bushing instead of a bearing but I expected that. They still have full metal gears though. No reason you coudlnt put your own  bearing in there cheaply if you really wanted to but I don't really see the point.

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The only thing left now is to test them but from experience, they seem to work as well as the originals for the most part.

Not the best servos going but they are pretty tough and fast enough. They make a decent step up from a basic plastic gear servo if you want something a bit tougher and with approx 2-3x the torque.

Here's a comparison to a genuine version. It's worth noting that the genuine ones sometimes have brass splines too.

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Ordered a couple earlier :) glad to see they're not filled with wasps or similarly dreadful. Order has gone through fine just waiting on a dispatch. Cheers for posting!

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I've just tested 2 of them. My findings are in line with previous experiences with the copied versions.

Speed is pretty good, maybe a hair slower than the genuine but it's hard to tell without comparing side to side, they sound different as well which can throw your perception off.

Torque is definitely better than a cheap plastic gear servo, the wheels will turn much easier on surfaces such as carpet.

Accuracy: I couldn't notice any difference to the genuine one which is to say it's probably not 100% perfect but definitely in line with other other entry level servos that cost many times more and have less torque! I didn't notice any significant overshooting either. Certainly a million miles from the horrific MG995 and I would say for many vehicles, play in the steering system will be way worse than any kind of centering inaccuracies.

Build quality: They seem to be very similar to the original apart from having a bushing instead of a bearing on the spline gear. There's a small amount of play in the spline gear but no worse than the genuine or budget offerings from the name brands.

Overall, they appear to be the exact same servos that usually sell for around £14 for 4 which I already considered a bargain.

I can't tell you whether or not you should buy some but those are my personal findings. From the short experience I've had with them, I would say that if you manage your expectations, they offer very strong value for money and make sense as a superior alternative to a bog standard plastic servo in the 3-5kg range.

Considering they cost just £1.75 each, there's nothing worth complaining about...so far!

But proceed with caution, the quality control is obviously going to be a huge gamble.so I don't want any responsibility if you order some and they suck!

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Ordered some. My Mad Manta Bull Hopper Thrasher Thing has the original ACOMS servo. These should be spot on with the bigger wheels i am now using. 

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4 hours ago, KEV THE REV said:

I've looked at these before now , might get some

Honestly, I think £6 is worth the risk and with eBay, you could just return them anyway if you were bothered.

I've just been using one in my Blackfoot after killing two servos in it recently and it's still working after a couple of hours lol.

The only thing I would be worried about is centering really. Towerpro themselves fixed that issue going from the 995 to the 996 but it might be something to look out for with the clones.

But like I said earlier, with all due respect, the kind of Tamiyas I drive tend to not have the most precise steering setups, especially the vintage designs, so it would take a pretty big centering issue to "push through the slop" and actually influence the direction of the vehicle too much. In many cases you can have the most accurate servo in existence and the rest of the steering setup will still have slop and deviate slighty from straight whenever it feels like it.

On top of that, I've learned to keep my hand on the steering these days anyway for better control. When I watch old videos, you can constantly hear the steering wheel pinging on the spring when I let go of it continually which is asking for trouble regardless of whether it's from slop/play or the servo itself. It's nice to have a vehicle that tracks straight but it doesn't mean you should blast around at full speed with your hands off the wheel.

They seem to be pretty good from my experience till now though. I wouldn't trust them to do a speed run down a narrow road with hands off the steering perhaps but for every day bashing they seem more than up to the job.

To give a bit of perspective, a few years ago I got a couple of fake Futaba s3003s from ebay just to try and they were by far the worst servos I have ever used. They never centred correctly and I'm talking by like 5 or 10 degrees! They would often fail to centre at all and would just kind of vibrate and judder until you made an input. But perhaps worse was how far they over shot, you could turn the EPA down to 10% but they would still do a full movement if you turned the steering fast enough! They were that bad that they would physically self destruct because they would try and go past their own travel limiters and break teeth off.

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1 hour ago, KEV THE REV said:

Thanks mate , just bought some . I think he will sell out fast

Let us know how you get on!

I have 6 genuine ones from Hobbyking that have all been fine and I already had 4 copies too and I haven't noticed any problems with them. I've been using them in the kind of vehicles I bash about on sand and dirt etc which I guess makes life easy on them in terms of precision. Maybe if I put them in a fast on road car with very high tolerances I might have noticed some inaccuracies but you could say that for any budget servo I guess. It's hard to make a truly fair comparison because I never sit there analysing my more expensive servos anyway. As is often the case, the cheap stuff gets put on a pedestal and perhaps held to unfair standards. The only time Iv'e ever driven back and forth to test how straight the car runs is when I've used cheap servos. I could well own cars with more expensive servos that can't go perfectly straight and I'd never know because I've never taken the time to drive up and down a street obsessing over it!

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I just took my Blackfoot out again with one of them, seemed to work totally fine, plenty of strength and plenty fast enough.

I did take it up and down a stretch of road too and it seems to run pretty straight to me!

Not the best test bed though because the slop in the Blackfoot front end is legendary and any kind of surface camber will make it deviate from straight. Same with the rear suspension setup, easily my favourite part of the ORV chassis but also causes exaggerated steering when the rear end leans to one side, you can end up in an endless side to side tug of war because each attempt at correction just causes it to veer in the opposite direction instead of just straightening up, the slop factors into it again too because the wheels will always turn that little bit more than you requested!

BUT!! On a perfectly flat stretch of road I could easily go from one end to the other without the truck pulling to the side so the servo seems to be pretty good!

I'll have to try one in something with a little more inherent stability like a Slash next.

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Unfortunately, mine were twitchy.  

I'm a fan of cheap servos. So, I grabbed a few last year from ebay. But mine were not good. At least they were cheap.  I kept them to see if I could use the brass gears for some other servo.  Maybe I'll get some more. Even if I get 1 working out of 3, it might still be cheaper.  

 

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18 minutes ago, Juggular said:

Unfortunately, mine were twitchy.  

I'm a fan of cheap servos. So, I grabbed a few last year from ebay. But mine were not good. At least they were cheap.  I kept them to see if I could use the brass gears for some other servo.  Maybe I'll get some more. Even if I get 1 working out of 3, it might still be cheaper.  

 

I haven't noticed anything significant so far out of the ones I have but it goes without saying that the quality control isn't going to be top rate. I did see a tutorial once where you could swap a few of the components out for better quality ones to improve accuracy and reduce the dead spot, not sure if it would be worth the time and effort though. It was literally a few pennies worth of components though.

Another option is to get genuine ones from Hobbyking, they sometimes come down as low as £4 each on there which I think is still great value.

https://hobbyking.com/en_us/towerpro-mg996r-10kg-servo-10kg-0-20sec-55g.html?wrh_pdp=1

The more modest, plastic geared Hobbyking HK15138 is great for a cheapy too in my experience, sometimes as little as £2.50 each from the UK warehouse.

https://hobbyking.com/en_us/hobbykingtm-hk15138-standard-analog-servo-4-3kg-0-17sec-38g.html

The JX 6221MG is another cheap one I've had good results with and they have an impressive 20KG of torque.

And the most powerful budget ones for 1/10 scale I've tried are the 25KG DS Servo DS3225, you can get them for about £10 each or £14 for the coreless version which is appreciably faster.

 

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4 x servos arrived today , haven't tried them yet but they look and feel of a good quality and come with the horns / hardware kit with those handy round grommets - good for all sorts of things ,  and for the price you can't grumble

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12 hours ago, KEV THE REV said:

4 x servos arrived today , haven't tried them yet but they look and feel of a good quality and come with the horns / hardware kit with those handy round grommets - good for all sorts of things ,  and for the price you can't grumble

Let us know how they work.

I've tried one in my Blackfoot and one in my slash clone now and they seem to work ok. I've seen a mod online where you can improve the dead point by replacing a few components but I think it might apply to an older clone with a plastic bushing and not a brass one.

I would be willing to give it a try if I notice anything significant issues though. The components required are silly cheap.

https://www.rcgroups.com/forums/showthread.php?2485803-Fixup-MG996R-servos

I honestly can't say I've noticed any major dead spot before the servo reacts so far though.

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I've got a few projects on the back burner so in time I'll get round to using them - I'll report back then , thanks again for the heads up :)

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Here's my daily update lol

I've tried them in the following vehicles now:

Blackfoot: Seems to work fine.
Slash 4x4 clone: Also fine
Kyosho Big Brute: Fine!
 

Tamiya Heavy Dump Truck: Not sure!

I got in from work earlier and was a bit bored so I very quickly swapped out the servo in my dump truck and took it out for a blast. It seemed to be pulling to the left a lot though. I'm not ready to blame the servo just yet though because of the following reasons: 

1. It was pulling to one side under acceleration and the other when off the throttle which in my experience is more likely to be a drive train or wheel issue.

2. The spline screw supplied with the servo wasn't long enough and I had to use an alternative but it was a little too long so the servo saver could move up and down on the spline slightly.

3. This is a biggie, this is the same dump truck I took to the skate pack back in March and managed to pull off some backflips....I also pulled off a lot of crashes so maybe something is a little bent? I literally haven't touched it until today and let's just say bits of it are still in that skate park in Southampton so this wasn't a finely honed test bed.

4. When I was out driving, the truck suddenly seemed to straighten up. It was at this point I noticed all 4 tyres had come off the rims on the inside edges! Did this happen today or did it happen 4 months ago in Southampton? I have no idea :lol:

I think what might have happened is that one tyre was already off when I started out which is why the truck was pulling to the side under acceleration. I think by the time all 4 had come loose, it had balanced itself out. I put all 4 back on and gave it a bit more of a run around and it seemed to be going perfectly straight! 

I'll need to do a bit more testing to confirm but I think the servo was innocent in this instance. I find that if a servo has problems lining up then the vehicle can veer in either direction and will do it all the time and not just under heavy throttle. 

 

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Ok, I tried the original servo back in the Dump Truck and it was the same. I put the towerpro into my Slash 4x4 clone and it was fine!

Besides the previously mentioned issues with the dump truck, I discovered that two of the lower shock ball joints were loose and wobbling about and the biggest issue was the screw pin for the rear left lower arm was severely bent causing that wheel to have toe-in hence the truck veering to the left. 

I fixed the truck up and put the TP servo back in and it's running fine.

So that's 4/4 servos working more than well enough for my purposes.

"Bad" news though,

They put the price up to £8.99 last week and £10.99 today.

Luckily I grabbed a few more sets while they were still £6.99

Even at £10.99 they are a bargain though!

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35 minutes ago, nowinaminute said:

They put the price up to £8.99 last week and £10.99 today.

I guess that was inevitable , good that you bought more though , and good news with the trials :)

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4 hours ago, KEV THE REV said:

I guess that was inevitable , good that you bought more though , and good news with the trials :)

I'm glad I bit the bullet now, I hesitated for a while but I pulled the trigger after a few of them worked fine. Knowing my luck, the 3 extra sets I ordered will all be terrible lol.

I was having another look at the thread on Rcgroups where the guy worked out how to improve the deadband by changing a few components. Doing a quick visual test of these servos I really couldn't see any significant dead spot, they seem to respond to the very smallest of control inputs. He also mentioned the servo had a nylon bushing whereas these ones have brass so I started to wonder of this was a different clone to the ones he had.

The guy mentioned the code on the chip used and which components to replace so I opened one of mine up and had a look. None of the chips inside have the same product code as the one inside his so I'm assuming these are a different design and seemingly a superior one too because The dead and on mine are nothing like in this video where he compares a fixed pne to an unmodified one:

It's a shame the price has gone up but you're still getting 4 for less than the cost of 2 genuine ones.

Between this and my £14 8000mah lipos this past week has been a rare example of getting more than you pay for!

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I tested out my servos , they all work well , not installed them into anything yet , but all seems good .

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