One of the crucial in style RC autos that Traxxas presents is the stadium truck referred to as Rustler. Out there in at least six variations, Rustler is obtainable in two or 4 wheel-drive and is motivated by your alternative of a brushed motor, brushless motor and even nitro engine possibility. It’s undoubtedly a flexible and enjoyable automobile to drive.
We beforehand managed to come up with a Rustler 4X4 VXL to assessment within the January difficulty of RCCA. Our pink and purple liveried four-wheel drive truck is pushed by Traxxas’ highly effective brushless Velineon motor and digital pace controller mixture. Those that learn our earlier assessment of the Rustler will keep in mind that we have been enthralled with its dynamic driving and strong sturdiness traits.
Now that we’ve got had a while with it in its inventory type, we thought that it was a great time to improve it for much more driving enjoyable with a choice of Traxxas manufacturing facility improve components. We may by no means depart something in its manufacturing facility configuration in spite of everything. Earlier than we soar into how we upgraded our Rustler, let’s recap what the Rustler 4X4 VXL is all about.
Out of the Field
Traxxas’ Rustler 4X4 VXL amps up the already spectacular efficiency of its base-model model by additional augmenting it with beneficiant quantities of brushless energy for aggressive off highway pace and certain footed stability. This four-wheel drive stadium truck already options loads of upgrades straight out of the field together with a totally brushless electronics bundle in addition to a low-center of gravity (low-CG) composite chassis.
The Rustler’s low-CG chassis positions the truck’s mass low for improved stability and assured dealing with. The wheelbase of the stadium truck has been lengthened by 20mm so as to present enhanced steadiness for stability and responsiveness. The result’s a truck that confidently careens round tight corners and jumps with ease.
Should you’re searching for pure pace, it’s good to know that the Rustler 4X4 VXL’s Velineon 3500kV sensorless and brushless motor can energy it to over 65 miles per hour whereas working the advisable battery and gearing pairing. That is attainable because of a strong transmission arrange that features a bigger Revo-Spec slipper clutch and excessive heavy-duty driveshafts. Its one-piece aluminum driveshaft distributes the facility between entrance and rear gearboxes, leading to an impressively easy and environment friendly driveline operation.
The truck’s set of oil-filled Extremely Shocks is complemented with progressive charge springs that assist keep a easy trip tough terrain and massive air jumps. Thick 4mm turnbuckles are constituted of heavy-duty metal and could be adjusted for customized toe and camber settings. Its absolutely captured rod ends are designed to not pop off even underneath excessive stress.
Again to the crux of this text, the all-important upgrades. We took a gander on the ocean-deep catalog that’s Traxxas’ web site and noticed that the corporate has a deep understanding of what makes RC fanatics like us come again for extra… upgrades. They provide improve components for many, if not all of their choices. Some components are supposed to enhance the sturdiness of the automobile whereas others can improve any of its efficiency elements together with its stability, dealing with or energy output.
We took a dive into their on-line catalog and chosen just a few upgrades that we thought would improve our weekend bashing classes. It was determined to focus on fortifying our Rustler’s suspension and driveshafts whereas additionally enhancing the VXL’s cooling system. Making our Rustler stand out from the gang by making it our personal with manufacturing facility upgrades ended up being fairly an pleasurable course of and the outcomes are fervently satisfying.
We began by disassembling the Rustler’s entrance and rear suspension in order that we may set up upgraded metal constant-velocity (CV) driveshafts, heavy-duty suspension arms, aluminum shock towers, in addition to entrance aluminum caster and steering blocks and rear stub axle carriers.
The heavy-duty metal CV driveshafts we put in are engineered particularly for stadium truck functions and are constructed to face up to the big quantities of torque which might be fed to them by highly effective motors such because the Traxxas brushless VXL that’s within the Rustler. These upgraded metal CV items can deal with the surplus energy with out difficulty. Apart from making the driveline stronger, Traxxas’ distinctive splined telescoping design delivers full-range articulation so there isn’t any must restrict suspension journey.
Rustler is already outfitted with Traxxas’ highly effective brushless Velineon VXL system, so we didn’t must improve the motor or ESC, however we did need to add a cooling system to it. Conserving your motor and ESC cool is one of the best ways to increase its operational life. We did this by putting in a cooling warmth sink and a cooling fan package to the motor. We additionally put in an ESC cooling fan for good measure. As a result of Traxxas pre-wires their electronics on the manufacturing facility for future upgrades, it was all too straightforward to put in this stuff; they have been actually plug-and-play.
Steering & Suspension
Subsequent, we swapped out the plastic steering and suspension components for aluminum upgrades. Specializing in the steering elements, we took out the inventory servo and changed it with a Traxxas Excessive-Torque 330 Blue Servo. The absolutely waterproof 330 Blue servo combines most steering energy with high-performance options that embrace full metallic gears for power, twin ball bearings for smoothness, and an aluminum heart part for added warmth dissipation.
After the servo was in, we readied a pair of aluminum steering blocks for elevated steering enhancement. The blue-anodized 6061-T6 aluminum components are precision-machined for steering accuracy and bulletproof power. This improve helps give Rustler razor sharp agility on and off the highway. The blue aluminum does look nice too.
With the steering portion taken cared of, it was time to maneuver on to the suspension elements. However first, we put in a heavy-duty chassis brace. The heavy-duty oval-shaped chassis brace is constituted of thick extruded aluminum and is designed to extend torsional rigidity and dramatically strengthens the chassis to cut back flex.
We then changed the inventory plastic entrance and rear shock towers with blue-anodized 7075-T6 aluminum variations. It’s essential to notice that Traxxas makes use of 7075-T6 aluminum within the upgraded shock towers, not softer formulations of the fabric. Traxxas engineers selected to make use of this stronger aluminum as a result of larger stresses and impacts that the shock towers must endure. The shock towers are additionally used as physique mount foundations, so larger power on this space might help shrug off harm from rollovers and crashes too. Added power with an upgraded look; are you able to inform we simply love the look of aluminum in our RC autos?
Subsequent, we put in a set of professional quality suspension arms. These Traxxas arms are constructed of the corporate’s newest proprietary composite materials and are designed for prime hundreds and arduous landings with simply the correct amount of flex to withstand breaking—even in chilly climate. Bulletproofing the Rustler couldn’t be simpler.
We additionally upgraded the stadium truck’s caster blocks (C-hubs) and rear carriers with blue-anodized aluminum variations. These aluminum C-hubs and rear carriers are even stronger than the sturdy inventory items. The rear carriers embrace hardened-steel hinge pins and e-clips to for much more power.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t level out that since all of the upgrades we put in are designed and manufactured by the identical designers and engineers that make the Rustler, we didn’t encounter any issues when putting in the improve components. Each screw, pin, e-clip and half match completely with none points in anyway. Since they’re made to manufacturing facility specs utilizing high quality supplies, we’ve got absolute confidence that they are going to final.
Topping off the construct, we completed off our upgrade-fest with two extra installs that may improve each the utility and appears of the Rustler. First, we put in a Traxxas Hyperlink Wi-fi Module into Rustler’s transmitter. The Hyperlink module and downloadable good system app arms the motive force with three main capabilities. It permits for real-time telemetry to be displayed of your automobile whereas it’s working by way of high-definition graphics which might be displayed in your Android or Apple good system. Additionally view the temperature of your motor or pace management, battery voltage, or actual world pace in real-time.
The module additionally means that you can fine-tune your mannequin by way of the Traxxas Hyperlink app, which offers a consumer interface to make and save your customized settings in seconds. If it’s good to reverse a servo course, set servo finish factors, or nice tune the steering charge or braking share, you are able to do it with only a few faucets of the display. Moreover, the Hyperlink module simply permits the activation of Traxxas’ Coaching Mode. Coaching Mode cuts the facility and pace of the truck in half for brand new drivers to familiarize themselves with the automobile’s management earlier than going full-speed.
The ultimate improve we put in was Rustler particular physique reinforcements. These heavy-duty polymer physique brackets sit on prime of the Rustler’s hood simply ahead of the windshield and at its rear simply ahead of its rear physique mount. The reinforcements assist unfold affect forces by the physique guaranteeing longevity. They’re refined upgrades, however give the physique a rugged look too.
With the Rustler upgraded with our chosen choice of manufacturing facility Traxxas enhancements, we sat again and reveled in its greatness. Our pink and purple Rustler was able to bash as soon as once more. We hit a gravel path for an all-day bash session and instantly felt the payoff of the upgrades. Rustler’s steering felt loopy agile, its suspension soaked up the bumps and listening to the twin cooling followers doing its factor was, for the shortage of a greater time period, very cool too. It’s good to know that Traxxas does make lots extra upgrades for Rustler. We’ll must look right into a second improve session within the close to future.
Textual content and Photos by Jerry Tsai