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EvilSpike

Hawkins Power & Light

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So I got into RC as an adult earlier in the year partly because of the lockdown and partly because other acquaintances were buying RC cars.  I had a Super Sabre QD as a nipper but always wanted a proper kit, sadly Tamiya have so far not rere'ed it. I built a Terra Scorcher that did get released just as I started spending wallet-unhealthy amounts of time looking at kits. The problem with buggies though is that they need a fairly smooth surface to run on. At the end of the day, a 2cm diameter piece of gravel to your RC car would be like driving into a breeze block in your car. So yeah, I needed a monster truck.

I remember someone had a Mud Blaster at the club we went to for a few months with our QD's in Deal, Kent when I must have been about ten? Again, like the SS they're not readily available, but I'd also heard bad things about the Monster Beetles gearbox being incredibly fragile. As I wasn't racing and it was just for a bit of fun I started looking at Lunchboxes. During lockdown my Mrs and I had been watching the TV series Stranger Things, so when I saw a sticker kit replicating the vans from the show I got my credit card out and bought a Lunchie from Fusion Hobbies and almost the same again in hop up bits. And I thought motorbike racing was expensive...*

So yeah, it's a Lunchbox, but with some additions to the build. Firstly was bearings, secondly a Sport Tuned motor. The next addition was a four part kit from an ebay seller called chr15-w and it's essentially four bits of threaded rod on eyelet adjusters and the required nuts/bolts/pivots. It braces the top of the front shocks, each rear shock top pivot to the axel dropout and a fixed fifth shock. I'm really impressed with the simplicity but structural integrity it gives everything, especially for the price. 

2020-11-05 15.21.27


I also bought some Absima shocks to replace the pogo sticks the kit comes with. I'm very impressed with them, all four seem to have a similar level of rebound damping in them and were leak free through the post.

2020-11-09 20.38.19


From the same vendor as the other braces I bough one for the wheelie bar to stop it from damaging the gearbox case.

2020-11-09 20.37.36

 

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I bought some aluminium body mounts from Precision Geeks to stave off the inevitable breakage. On their website they sell some beautifully made things, the alu wheels being the highlight but at £65 they're too expensive for me to justify. It must be a fair amount of time on the lathe/cnc machine though, so I'd say that price is cheap for what they are!

2020-11-09 20.37.03


Whilst building the front suspension I reinforced the front wheels with some AbroSteel, as advised by Pete Wylie on his youtube videos.

2020-11-10 20.24.39


So that was pretty much the chassis build done

2020-11-10 22.15.53


The only problem I had was with the after-market steering gear I had bought. They hadn't sent me the central washer which retains the steering horn onto the servo output shaft. I've emailed the ebay supplier but after a reply acknowledging they've gone radio silent. Oh well, it's not the end of the world and I'll try and turn something up on a lathe to fit when I get the chance.

2020-10-30 20.49.56

 

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So as this was a significantly more basic build than the Terra Scorcher I decided to spend a bit more time on the body. As I'd got the Hawkins Power & Light Stickers, the body itself was to remain white therefore required no paint. Which considering the number of times it's rolled onto the roof so far it's been a very good thing! But, as had been suggested by @KEV THE REV & @jellon amongst others I might as well as do a little detailing work too.

I'm pretty useless with the paintbrushes to be honest, I certainly have a tendency to keep poking at stuff when I should just leave it alone. That's true with this car and with painting the inside of my last house! Either way, armed with some Humbrol paints, the smallest brush I could get my hands on and a can of brake cleaner to wipe off any stray brushstrokes I tried to do my best.

The side window surrounds got some black paint, as did the inside after one too many mistakes. I should have masked up inside for a straight line but forgot to do so then incorrectly believed you wouldn't be able to see it anyway.

WhatsApp Image 2020-11-04 at 21.05.25(1)

The rear light surrounds and the number plate got some black too, then topped off by some silver acting as chrome trim, as did the door handles. I painted the rear light clusters red as I wasn't planning on using the stickers, and the indicators orange.

WhatsApp Image 2020-11-04 at 21.06.58(1)

Lastly the recessed parts of the scuttle got painted black. I was able to brush into the recesses then use the brake cleaner and a rag to wipe off the excess outside which made it an easy job. I thought about highlighting the panel gaps but decided it would stand out too much in black against the white. I can always change my mind later. Lastly I has some lights to fit. The fronts were nice and easy, the kit being supplied with buckets, the rears I had to drill which was a bit of a shame. I fitted both pairs in with some Sugru moldable glue as recommended by Pete Wylie.

2020-11-11 23.42.48-2

 

2020-11-11 23.28.04

The Sugru hadn't been applied when I took this picture. Not only does it secure the LEDs in place it also acts as a light block stopping any light bleeding into the inside of the body.

2020-11-11 23.26.30

 

I'm quite pleased with it :)

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I knew this reference instantly. Truck looks great!

IMO a Lunchie needs some black detailing to the front grille to give it some depth. Not sure which parts you would paint black (or how you would do it) but I think it would help break up the slab of chrome a bit if you could.

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That's great - I've never seen the Stranger Things design before. Your painting is considerably better than mine. 

I really recommend a grey gundam marker to highlight the main panel lines. It only takes 10 minutes and you quickly rub off the excess with a pencil rubber. Ideally you warm up the stickers and press them into the panel lines with a toothpick first. Although it looks like very few of yours actually cross the lines. It really gives it a realistic finish. Grey should work well with the white paint. 

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That is going to be great to drive with the hop ups you've added. Have fun wrestling with the steering :)

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I like the look of the 5th shock solution. I went for the fishing line and it's held up really well so far 

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On 11/17/2020 at 11:13 PM, EvilSpike said:

I bought some aluminium body mounts from Precision Geeks to stave off the inevitable breakage. On their website they sell some beautifully made things, the alu wheels being the highlight but at £65 they're too expensive for me to justify. 

Hi. Great job on the build here. I really like the paint job. I've had a look on the Precision Geeks website. However I can't see the wheels you mentioned. Do you know if they are still available? 

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On 11/20/2020 at 3:40 PM, jellon said:

Have fun wrestling with the steering

It has steering? I never knew! :D

I though about the fifth shock, but figured that the rigid bar would be almost as good in terms of performance in stopping axle tramp but still allowing articulation. It would be however a bit cheaper and one less thing to go wrong. For what was supposed to be a cheap kit, with the add ons, paint and stickers it actually ended up more expensive than my Terra Scorcher!

I had a go at the Postal Racing Round V. Here's a shot of the Lunchbox in it's natural racing environment...

50631081101_7c7841e271_b.jpg

 

2 hours ago, BigJag said:

I've had a look on the Precision Geeks website. However I can't see the wheels you mentioned. Do you know if their still available? 

Ah my apologies, it's Miniature Manufacturing from Dorset that made them however they don't seem to list the wheels in their ebay store at the moment, only the alu rear wheel adaptors. @Baron_Greenback made a thread recently about his/her Black Edition Lunchbox where you can see the wheels. They're gorgeous things! The wheels I mean, not Mr/Mrs Greenback. Although I'm not saying he/she isn't too...

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On 11/26/2020 at 8:02 AM, EvilSpike said:

It has steering? I never knew! :D

I though about the fifth shock, but figured that the rigid bar would be almost as good in terms of performance in stopping axle tramp but still allowing articulation. It would be however a bit cheaper and one less thing to go wrong. For what was supposed to be a cheap kit, with the add ons, paint and stickers it actually ended up more expensive than my Terra Scorcher!

I had a go at the Postal Racing Round V. Here's a shot of the Lunchbox in it's natural racing environment...

50631081101_7c7841e271_b.jpg

 

Ah my apologies, it's Miniature Manufacturing from Dorset that made them however they don't seem to list the wheels in their ebay store at the moment, only the alu rear wheel adaptors. @Baron_Greenback made a thread recently about his/her Black Edition Lunchbox where you can see the wheels. They're gorgeous things! The wheels I mean, not Mr/Mrs Greenback. Although I'm not saying he/she isn't too...

 

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So whilst having a go at Postal Racing V I noticed that the steering had gone a wee bit wobbly*. It turns out that the screw holding the steering horn had unthreaded itself from the Etronix servo. I tightened it backup, but after another five minutes of scoofing around the drive and front garden it had come undone again.

I decided to revisit the GPM Racing aluminium steering servo-saver and arms to see if I could get it to fit. I needed a washer to retain a longer, 5mm screw instead of the 3.5mm one that had come with the servo which would also hold the two parts of the horn together. Ideally I'd have spun a piece of alu on a lathe to make it the right diameter, but without one available and a want to get it running today I decided to take an M3 washer and grind it by hand down a fraction.  I realise that's a proper hash way of doing it but I'm out of options, plus having it slightly off centre would make for a better interference fit with the plastic output barrel of the servo.

Anyway, ten minutes with the dremmel and I managed to got it to fit mostly square, but it's now very firmly together. I put a drop of cement on the screws thread too which should hopefully stop it from unwinding itself in future.

2020-12-01 11.56.00

It's in now, and although I set the tie rod lengths as per the manual it had a hideous amount of tow in and neither by a similar amount. I've adjusted it by eye and it now runs more or less straightish. It's not like it his the front wheels on the ground much of the time anyway...

 

 

*That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it...

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Nice build! There’s a mod to center the servo: 

 

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