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mud4fun

The trio - build of Vanquish, Avante 2001 & Egress

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I have owned this pair of buggies for approx 18-20 years, they are definitely NOT shelf queens. They have been regularly driven on our very rough garden race track, bashed about on day trips to Clumber etc and been tried with numerous high power motors over the years as test bed vehicles for speed tests etc. While actually not as good as my 8.4v 19T terra scorcher on our garden track (and no I'm not joking!) they hold a lot of memories for me and I'm not that keen to get rid of them, even though common sense would say to simply bin them and buy new Associated or Schumacher buggies as they would probably work out cheaper and be cheaper to fix when they break.

Sadly they are in a bad way. The Avante 2001 has broken front hubs, worn out UJ's, worn out diffs, shocks leak and have lost their oil and the body is pretty rough too. The vanquish is even worse, both rear hubs broke years ago and were replaced with a bodged thundershot arrangement to allow the buggy to still be used. The front uprights are cracked, hubs shot, UJ's worn out etc. The body is rough and the wing is distorted and ruined from a failed paint remover test.

The Vanquish was mostly run with 7.2v and 19T motors but the Avante 2001 was running 8.4v with a Dyna Run Super Touring motor for 16 years..... quite a pokey combination in its day....I'm surprised the diffs lasted as long as they did. Total hours running time on each car is approx 200hrs although they have been rebuild at least twice each over the last 15 years.

My plan is to rebuild the Avante 2001 back to stock factory form and will be then be retired as a shelf queen but the Vanquish will be stripped and rebuilt using every mod I can afford including carbon chassis etc to be a frankenstein combination of Avante 2001, Egress and Vanquish parts and will then be used regularly again and raced against my daughters Terra Scorchers etc on our track.

I used to have vast stocks of parts for these buggies but over the years the parts have dwindled to near zero as parts broke and were replaced from the stock. I ended up with no alloy uprights left in my stock, no screws or balls or shock or gearbox rebuild kits etc. So I have started buying some new stock and was happy to see the new alloy uprights and hubs become available. I have already got the gold anodised uprights for the pair and I have alloy front and rear hubs on order from HK.

This will be a long build because I am now skint and still need to save up to buy a fair few missing parts but the next post will be after I've stripped both buggies down and cleaned all the parts.

Here are some pictures of them as they are now in non runner form:

 

EDIT: I am now going to attempt to build an Egress too as I have about 50% of the parts required to build a 3rd chassis so will order more parts where and when I can find them to get an Egress done too.

 

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Wow im loving that greeny petrolly blue body colour!!! Not a tamiya colour ive seen before - can you remember what it was?

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2 hours ago, Superluminal said:

Wow im loving that greeny petrolly blue body colour!!! Not a tamiya colour ive seen before - can you remember what it was?

Can't remember the exact colours now but they were actually halfords automotive paint, a deep (almost pearlescent) Land Rover Defender green for the Vanquish and 'Atlantic' blue Land Rover Defender paint for the Avante as far as I can remember (I believe it was Land Rover 50th special anniversary colour as my Freelander was painted in same colour), sprayed externally on the shell over a primer. At the time, back in 2002'ish there wasn't any readily available polycarbonate paint strippers that worked reliably without clouding the shells, so I just primed and painted on top of the shell. It lasted a good few years like that (actually 15+ years!)

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Actually, this may turn into a triple build. I just realised the re-re Vanquish will be due in the next couple of months and that may lead to more parts available so I 'may' be able to build a stock Avante 2001, stock Vanquish and heavily modified Vanquish/Egress hybrid from these chassis and all my spare parts.

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I managed to strip the Avante 2001 down, what a flipping PITA this was, 3 hours of my life. I swear I could have stripped and rebuilt a Terra Scorcher in the time it took me to get the damned countersunk screws out of the chassis on this. Most of them had been either rounded off or worn away and all of them were seized solid in the alloy posts. I had to use the dremel to cut slots in some in order to extract them and on others I managed to get a very large pair of pliers to rotate the post off the screw.

How Tamiya ever thought this would make a competitive racing buggy Lord knows but the weight of screws, bearings and other metal parts is horrific! I always wondered why my Terra Scorcher left this standing on our track and after stripping it down I'm not surprised. 

The good news is that most of this is salvageable.

Main damage is all the hubs are either completely shot or are showing cracks around the shoulder screw holes. All the bearings are either seized or making horrible grinding noises and the shielding actually disintegrated as I took them out LOL. These were original (and expensive) Tamiya items too but to be fair they have done 200 hours with an 8.4v Dyna Run Super Touring motor so I guess not too bad.

The front UJ's are worn but will be fine for a shelf queen. 

The bumper will be replaced with a new one because I stupidly drilled some holes in it years ago to mount a bumper extension (to protect the fragile hubs etc). I guess I could fill the holes but I have a few spare bumpers so not much point for this rebuild.

Next job is to clean all this up ready for re-assembly with new screws and bearings.

 

 

 

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Managed to make a start on polishing some of the alloy parts, if I'm going to retire it to shelf queen status might as well give it a bit of bling?

Used a polishing head on the dremel, soaked with Brasso - result is one nice shiny set of deck support posts. They will dull eventually but in my experience the Brasso leaves a protective coating and the parts remain like this for a few months and will then polish up easily with a duster and bit more Brasso.

 

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edit: Also got the motor and gearbox plates cleaned and polished.

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I got all the main plastic parts washed in gunk today, use stiff brush (toothbrush) to remove oil, dirt and grime then washed in hot soapy water (fairy liquid) and then rinsed off. They have come up really clean.

The FRP plates were a bit of a mare. The large lower chassis plate has been badly scratched and worn where the heavy 8.4v battery has been rattling on it for 18 years of use. I managed to polish out alot of the smaller scratches using 2000 and 3000 grit wet and dry but you can still see the battery shaped mark as that is quite deep. 

The upper FRP Plate was a real nightmare. The previous owner had super glued the velcro to the plate over 20 years ago and I had to use a sharp kitchen knife to scrape it off because no chemical would touch it. Took me an hour! I was pleased to get it all off though and after a polish it has cleaned up OK, again you can still see patches of discolouration where the super glue had been but not too bad.

 

 

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I'm going to rename this thread from double build to the full trio, as I have realised that I have most of the parts to make a Vanquish, Avante2001 and Egress (other than shells which I'll need to order).

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I stripped the Avante2001 diffs and shocks and put all the remaining metal and plastic parts, screws etc into a bath of gunk, agitated that for 10 minutes then drained in a sieve, soaked for 30 minutes in hot soapy water and rinsed in clean water. The result is lots of nice clean parts.

Also found that the spur gear had worn teeth and actually had a chip out of one tooth so I have added that to the growing scrap pile and will use a new one. Also added to the scrap pile were all the small bearings in the various gearbox gearsets and a few more screws. Also found that two of the front suspension pins were actually bent! I will need to source new ones as I haven't got any spares at the moment.

NOTE: I will not be using the black plastic front shocks as they will be replaced with matching Egress alloy ones (the rears already are Egress). I will polish up the rear alloy shocks tomorrow and rebuild them with new o rings and fresh oil and potentially different springs.

 

Avante2001_rebuild6.jpg

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I want to re-use the Egress rear shock bodies but they were really badly scratched, pitted and dull. I sanded them with 2000 grit then polished them with the dremel. They look much better but probably need doing again with a coarser grit to remove the deeper scratches which still remain. Mind you, I don't think it will be so bad once the springs are in place.

EgressShocksPolish.jpg

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Had some more new parts delivered today, mostly screw bags and odd fittings that I need to complete the rebuilds. So I now have about 40% of the parts needed to rebuild the two wrecked cars plus the new build of the Egress. Major items I'm still searching for are one set of front and rear gearbox casings. Still waiting for a few other major items to be delivered from abroad such as alloy hubs, replica bodyshells and another set of Avante shocks.

I also got  some new storage trays delivered today so I could have one dedicated to Avante/Vanquish parts. I have loads of these Stanley deep storage boxes as they are ideal for holding all the parts for RC cars and for carrying in the back of my pickup truck to events or meets etc. I have dedicated boxes for motors, radio gear/ESC's, tyres, wheels, (6 of them just for Thundershot parts!). They aren't cheap (£20'ish each) but they have removable yellow compartments which is great because when building cars I can lift out the relevant compartments I need from each storage box and have them on my workbench to hand.

 

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Also I have found (in the attic) the two NIB Dyna Run Super Touring motors that will be fitted into the Vanquish and Egress, both will run 8.4v batteries too (once I get carbon chassis for the Vanquish). I don't intend to trash these two but they will get some running on clean surfaces such as local car park or astro turf track.

The Avante 2001 will be built with brushless and Lipo I think and will return to daily use as a runner/basher/racer on our garden track (I can hear the screams of pain from the collectors.......LOL )

 

dynarun.jpg

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Fun facts of the day, as evidence to my comment above that these buggies are heavy compared with my daily basher/racer T'shot's:

Terra Scorcher/Thundershot bathtub chassis - 81g

Egress Carbon Fibre upper and lower chassis decks - 95g 

Avante 2001 FRP upper and lower decks - 131g

 

and you think that is bad enough:

Avante 2001 set of four hex drive nuts - 11.5g

Terra Scorcher aftermarket (modelsport) thin alloy hex drives set of four - 4.5g

 

multiply all these excess weights over every component and it explains why my Avante 2001 weighed 175g more than my Terra Scorcher in race ready condition using identical motors, batteries and ESC's!

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3 hours ago, mud4fun said:

Fun facts of the day, as evidence to my comment above that these buggies are heavy compared with my daily basher/racer T'shot's:

Terra Scorcher/Thundershot bathtub chassis - 81g

Egress Carbon Fibre upper and lower chassis decks - 95g 

Avante 2001 FRP upper and lower decks - 131g

 

and you think that is bad enough:

Avante 2001 set of four hex drive nuts - 11.5g

Terra Scorcher aftermarket (modelsport) thin alloy hex drives set of four - 4.5g

 

multiply all these excess weights over every component and it explains why my Avante 2001 weighed 175g more than my Terra Scorcher in race ready condition using identical motors, batteries and ESC's!

Nice compilation of data!

Could you state the Vanquish, too? I have the feeling, it could be lighter with the tube chassis than the 2001?;) 

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8 minutes ago, ruebiracer said:

Nice compilation of data!

Could you state the Vanquish, too? I have the feeling, it could be lighter with the tube chassis than the 2001?;) 

Thanks and yes, I will update with Vanquish tub weight once I have the vanquish stripped. To be honest the Egress and Avante would be heavier than stated because they have to have reinforcement pads fitted to the lower plate where the trailing arms fit and they need additional mounts bolting on that are moulded into the terra scorcher and vanquish tubs so not entirely sure why people think the carbon or FRP chassis is lighter than the plastic tubs? I assume most of it is to do with looks rather than performance.....

 

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13 hours ago, mud4fun said:

I assume most of it is to do with looks rather than performance.....

I'm guessing the thinking was that once you've sandwiched two sheets of it together the resulting assembly is stiffer, stronger, more durable and will survive more disassembly reassembly cycles than an ABS tub without a large weight penalty. Also less likely to melt. BITD you either had an aluminium tub or composite decks on the pure racers but part of that was probably the relative ease of manufacture compared to a moulded plastic. Once glass re-enforced plastics came along then the tub came back in to fashion. 

Didn't look as good as composites and aluminium though :)

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46 minutes ago, Howards said:

I'm guessing the thinking was that once you've sandwiched two sheets of it together the resulting assembly is stiffer, stronger, more durable and will survive more disassembly reassembly cycles than an ABS tub without a large weight penalty. Also less likely to melt. BITD you either had an aluminium tub or composite decks on the pure racers but part of that was probably the relative ease of manufacture compared to a moulded plastic. Once glass re-enforced plastics came along then the tub came back in to fashion. 

Didn't look as good as composites and aluminium though :)

Yes, true.

Mind you,  you could buy an awful lot of plastic bathtubs (when they were new and readily available) for the same price as a pair of carbon plates LOL 

You're right though, the double deck is strong and stiff. Never had one break whereas I have had a fair few tubs crack (normally around the suspension or gearbox mounts) BUT generally speaking I'd reckon that 90%+ of my broken parts have been suspension, steering uprights and hubs - not just on the Avante chassis but on all my buggies including the Vanquish and thundershot based buggies. I reckon I've cracked maybe 4 tubs in last 20 years despite running the buggies regularly, maybe 10-20 hours of actual run time per year buggy (100-200 five min races). So not a massive issue.

The biggest problem for me with the Avante/Vanquish design is the steering uprights and rear hubs. Countless broken over the years and I only get a fraction of the runtime off them before breaking that I would with a Terra Scorcher hub. I do wonder though if part of that is due to the chassis stiffness and general rigidity of the design. The Terra Scorcher has quite flexible lower arms and a bit of slop in the uppers so in a crash there is some absorption of the impact before anything breaks whereas on the much more rigid Avante the full force of any impact goes straight into the hubs and they break.

I have run my Terra Scorcher for approx 30 five minute races/practise session in the last 3 weekends alone and had just one steering hub fail. In comparison, the Vanquish/Avante would probably do only 1/3 of that run time before cracking a hub on average (and the Avante hubs are 10x the price of the thundershot items)

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Not much to report this weekend on these rebuilds. I am still unable to start putting the Avante2001 back together because I'm waiting on parts from abroad (the alloy hubs being the most critical and they are sat in Customs in Coventry at the moment.....)

Now don't scream but I've ordered stainless screws to use for these builds. Yes I know they are heavy and ideally I would have gone with titanium BUT I'm not competing in BRCA national events and I can get 1000 stainless screws from a dedicated UK screw supplier for the same price as 10 titanium Tamiya ones (only a slight exaggeration!). The difference in weight will be irrelevant for my sort of use, racing with the kids on the back garden track. The advantage should be that they don't rust like the original screws that I took off which were in a really bad way after 20 years of regular use.

I'm hoping that by next weekend I can put the Avante2001 back together and start the Vanquish too. I'm still missing some major items for the Egress so that will be a month or two I think.

I am planning to do a full comparison in weights, performance (lap times) and speeds between all three of these when they are done and just for fun, a comparison between these and my modified race Terra Scorcher on our track ;-)

 

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I have received a load of parts today for the various re-builds including two amazing reproduction Avante 2001 shells from Team Blue Groove in Canada. Can't wait to get those painted.

I also ordered a load of stainless steel screws, bolts, nuts (plain, nyloc and serrated) and washers from a UK screw supplier. (Not an RC specialist) and they look great. I'm not bothered about weight as the buggies will never be serious racers so not prepared to pay for titanium. At least the stainless should stop my rusty screw issues.

Also got a load more DF03 wheels. Not liked by many people but these are ideal for thundershot and avante chassis vehicles as they are not deep dished so keep the wheels roughly where the originals were, they are 2.2 inch so fit schumacher standard tyres and foams in all their compounds and the front are narrow which gives better handling in our experience. I have now fitted them to most of our buggies to standardise on wheels and tyres.

I am gradually building up enough parts to build two sets of original Avante gold alloy shocks (the smaller diameter), a set of grey Egress alloy hi-caps (larger diameter) and three sets of Avante 2001 black plastic CVA's. Think I'm just about there now with this delivery today.

Still waiting on my alloy hubs from HK but now have everything else I need to get the Avante 2001 built back up.

  

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NOTE: The vanquish when rebuilt will be fitted with black CVA's not yellow and will have an Avante 2001 shell & wing not the vanquish ones because I prefer the looks of the Avante 2001. The Egress will be built in stock form. Also, the Avante 2001 chassis is being upgraded to carbon while the vanquish chassis will retain its plastic tub. I should then be able to run side by side comparisons on the track.

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Managed to get the diffs inspected and rebuilt with new screws and grease. Amazingly one of the diffs was missing a screw and it had been missing since originally built from new! Considering this has had 8.4v and a 13t motor running through it the diff gears were in excellent condition and I actually re-used them rather than use new. They have at least another 20-30 hours life (runtime) in them.

Built the gearboxes back up and fitted them to the chassis. Also fitted the original posts (that I have polished with the dremel)

Fitted all new bearings, new screws and the new carbon lower deck but all plastic is the original stuff. While badly scratched there were no cracks so I'm keeping as much of the original as possible.

 

 

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On 9/15/2020 at 3:07 PM, mud4fun said:

I managed to strip the Avante 2001 down, what a flipping PITA this was, 3 hours of my life. I swear I could have stripped and rebuilt a Terra Scorcher in the time it took me to get the damned countersunk screws out of the chassis on this. Most of them had been either rounded off or worn away and all of them were seized solid in the alloy posts. I had to use the dremel to cut slots in some in order to extract them and on others I managed to get a very large pair of pliers to rotate the post off the screw.....

NOW you've experienced, in full TERROR, why many of us invest in TITANUIM Screw Sets!!!! 😜😖😠😠

Not just for esthetics, or because they weigh 1/4th what Steel weighs.... 

But because they can be REMOVED after hard use without having to use Drills, Taps, TORCHES, Impact Wrenches or C-4 EXPLOSIVES!!! LOL!! 😜😂😄😂

They're not CHEAP. People like me actually have to plan for it - but OMG it's worth it! 😊👍👍

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1 minute ago, Carmine A said:

NOW you've experienced, in full TERROR, why many of us invest in TITANUIM Screw Sets!!!! 😜😖😠😠

Not just for esthetics, or because they weigh 1/4th what Steel weighs.... 

But because they can be REMOVED after hard use without having to use Drills, Taps, TORCHES, Impact Wrenches or C-4 EXPLOSIVES!!! LOL!! 😜😂😄😂

They're not CHEAP. People like me actually have to plan for it - but OMG it's worth it! 😊👍👍

LOL, I just used copperslip on the threads on those and thankfully stainless is harder so less likely to round off when undoing them :-) fingers crossed..... mind you, I may get into habit of removing them every few years to keep everything free.

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I MISS MY AVANTE 1988!! 💔😭 There, I said it. 

Next year, when I can officially begin my Hobby in earnest, I'm getting the Avante 2001 and the Vanquish - which I haven't owned before.  Those are down a little bit on the "Post Inheritance" shopping list... Right after the FF-03, M07, M08 and maybe Clodbuster.

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5 minutes ago, mud4fun said:

LOL, I just used copperslip on the threads on those and thankfully stainless is harder so less likely to round off when undoing them :-) fingers crossed..... mind you, I may get into habit of removing them every few years to keep everything free.

You will likely be OK with Stainless Screws - as long as they're NOT Phillips Head! 😲😖  The Copper Anti Seize Lubricant should definitely help them not to become permanent parts of the Chassis! 

You MIGHT want to consider the Avante 88's Lexan Undertray. Reproductions are cost effective, should fit all 3, and is lightweight!  I found it very good at protecting the Chassis from scoring, scratching and debris. 😉

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I have a love/hate relationship with my Avante2001 - I love how it looks and I love how it performs on the flat (on 8.4v and a Dyna Run super touring motor) but absolutely hate its ability to break front uprights or hubs even on seemingly smooth surfaces without even crashing! I've had them fail simply from sustained speeds over a couple of dozen laps of a track.

Thankfully the days of failed uprights and hubs should hopefully now be over as I am fitting the latest spec front hub carriers which are massive compared to the originals AND I'm going to be using alloy hubs on all four corners.

Yes, I know that if I beef up the hubs then it simply means the stresses will go into the suspension arms or gearbox mounts but I have literally dozens of spare arms and they are dirt cheap and I can beef up the inboard mounts with alloy options too.

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