Model: 58016: Sand Scorcher
Status: Project
Date: 4-Jan-2009
Comments: 16
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DISCLAIMER: I hold the original Sand Scorcher in very high regard - it is my favorite kit. I embarked on this project to push the boundaries of what can be done with the Scorcher, still keeping it 100% Tamiya, just 'evolved,' as if Tamiya continued to produce the kit and improve it. If there is interest, I will create a tutorial on the exact modifications I made when I break this kit down for paint (it is in the testing-proto stage right now).

GOALS: 1. Keep the scale appearance of the SRB front suspension combined with the proven durability and parts availability of the ORV chassis, gearbox and rear suspension. 2. Any SRB parts that are used REQUIRE NO MODIFICATION - they are too expensive to cobble up. 3. Minimal modification to ORV chassis, no exotic materials, easy to make original pieces. 4. Use original SRB body mounts - I wanted my Scorcher shells to swap back and forth easily with no mods using stock hardware.

THE RECIPE:
SRB parts include:
1. Complete front suspension (minus the Servo Saver)
2. SRB rear cage.
3. Sand Scorcher Body and Wheels.
4. SRB front bumper (I used a Lightning Rapid box art front cage, but any SRB bumper will fit).
ORV parts include:
1. ORV chassis (from Frog, Brat, Blackfoot, etc.)
2. ORV gearbox and rear suspension unit.
3. Bel crank steering from King Blackfoot.
4. Front inner suspension mount (requires modification)
Fabricated parts:
1. Front chassis/skid plate (made from aluminum plate)
2. Rear roll bar/body mount
3. Front body mount
4. Rear roll cage mount
5. Steering linkage (I used a unit stock for the Scorcher/RR)

THE BUILD:
The build was more difficult than it looked the first time. The trickiest piece was designing the front suspension mount. I originally wanted to use a 90 degree aluminum plate mounted to the stock ORV front suspension pickups. But the chassis was 2 MM too wide to fit the width of the plate and the front SRB suspension and I didn't want to modify either piece. So, I created an aluminum plate to replace the stock Brat aluminum skid plate. This flat plate is just like the front of the SRB chassis (you can use a SRB chassis as a template). The plate mounts to the ORV chassis on the sides and in front, using the front bumper mount (I will include closer pics in a more detailed build thread, if folks are interested). I did have to mildly trim two areas of the ORV chassis - about 5MM off the front (to maintain the correct wheelbase) and the bottom stiffening rib (so that the new chassis plate mounts flatly to the bottom. The changes were slight - you could still use the chassis to make a Frog the changes are so minor. I retained the ORV front suspension pickups as the front body mount - just grind them down slightly. In the rear, bending the roll bar was kind of tricky, but it maintains the stock SRB height and rear cage mount - the cage is in the exact same position. I also narrowed the rear ORV trailing arms 5mm to match the width of the SRB - simply trim the outer bearing recess and drill out a new bearing holder 5mm inboard (you can see it is narrow because the threads of the axle stick out more.

THE BENEFITS: 1. SRB looks with much better rear suspension travel, more choice of dampers and motors. 2. Cost savings - a SRB front suspension is still reasonably priced (less than $100) and you can get a cheap Frog off ebay for less than $40. 3. The Scorcher Shell fits with no modification. 4. Because the motor sits further forward, there is plenty of room for one of Old Skool's scale motors!

STILL TO DO: I still need to fit my Scollins interior, my scale VW motor from Old Skool, paint the ORV chassis black and add decals to the Lexan shell. I have a special paint job brewing for the Blitzer Shell too. Weather here in the midwest is horrible (please excuse the indoor photos) - I hope to put some serious off road time in with this model soon. To me, it is the perfect SRB and it's still 99% Tamiya.





Sand Scorcher with ORV DNA - faster, stronger... Side by side w. orig SRB - wheelbase & width same Which one is SRB and which one is SRB hybrid? Close up of SRB front suspension. Close up of aluminum front chassis plate. Rear view. Plasticard temporary. Needs scale motor Almost finished. Need decals and Scollins interior Blitzer shell for shelf. You can't get this fit with Frog front suspension. Side view - wheelbase is perfect.

If you liked those pictures, you should see these...
An improved SS with ORV DNA

Comments

Road Burner

4-Jan-2009

Nice work!

emspjay

4-Jan-2009

WOW! amazing work, I think I want to build one now. right to my favorites.

scollins

5-Jan-2009

Great job, I have to say I can really see the benefits of keeping the 'twin tube' front suspension setup from the SRB,,, and I really like the fact that all of this was made to be bolt-on without chopping up any castings... Nice hybrid, very clever, only ride like this on TamiyaClub, A++++

Crash Cramer

5-Jan-2009

You have my attention, I think I want to do something like this now, just have to find a shell.

Wyoming

5-Jan-2009

Very nice work, I love this kind of project so much more than either the srb or the orv because it is clever and thoughtful thinking outside the box.

Corona Powered

5-Jan-2009

Thanks to everyone who commented. You are my Tamiya Club heroes! I continue to be surprised and inspired by the creativity on this site. This was my winter break project and it's still not done. Getting the steering sorted took the better part of a day - spacing, removing bump steer, fabricating, etc. Tonight I spent about 3 hours on the scale VW motor and it is nowhere near finished. I have only just started on Scollins' interior (thanks again for the bonus) too. To Wyoming's point, I think Tamiya kits make a wonderful 'jumping off point' for bigger, better things. The support the Sand Scorcher gets with Tamiya Club member fabricated interiors, roll cages, scale motors, chassis, wheels, driver's heads, etc. really makes it a fun kit to explore again and again - a true classic.

BeetleLover

5-Jan-2009

Stunning work! Gives the Beetle more accurate rear suspension too, reckon front ends might be really sort after in the coming months!!!

Tobbe70

5-Jan-2009

Very interesting and clever-looking project! Will keep my eyes on this one Rock on

swedishwiking

5-Jan-2009

Great sideways thinking!

amigamad

5-Jan-2009

Superb idea Looks like the best scorcher style chassis anyone has come up with so far .

caddy shack

6-Jan-2009

Great work fella !!! I just love also to see it when peoples projects just come from clever creativity. i'd rather build bits from this & that and make my own one off things than build a nib kit lol. straight to my favorites. keep up the great work C P .

baja_mad

7-Jan-2009

that is a very impressive idea. i love it! maybe i will try something similar but will have to create my own front end because i cant afford an SRB front end! lol

Corona Powered

7-Jan-2009

It is possible to narrow the stock suspension of the Frog to have the same width as the SRB front. To see how to do it, take a look in my showroom under the SWB Brat with the Mini shell. It requires narrowing the front of the chassis with a grinder and narrowing the front suspension arms a little. It works, it just doesn't have the same scale look of the SRB suspension.

KEV THE REV

11-Jan-2009

looks great - any details on the rear mods? (roll bar / cage etc)

mymonsterbeetleisbroken

11-Jan-2009

Classic tamiya modifying, I love it! You can imagine a young racer doing this back in 1985 - he's bought a second hand sand scorcher, and he's making it competitive again Very nice work!!!

Corona Powered

11-Jan-2009

KEV - I just completed the how-to on the front suspension, and next I'll have a how-to on the rear - narrowing the rear arms (easy), bending the roll bar, attaching the cage and finally, fitting the Old Skool VW motor (that part took me the better part of a week, but I'm finally satisfied). Stay tuned and thanks for the positive comments everyone.


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