Being a scale guy I am sucker for detail and something out of the box with amazing details is anything and everything Mini-Z! So having this bug I have been spending some time over at Hobby Town Orland Park on the track they have set up and met the proprietors of Recession Raceway. Tom, Joe and Paul not wanting to go the super simple route and just move some dirt around they set out to make a real deal on road track. Since no one makes a kit to make an outdoor track this, the trio put their thinking caps on and used a ton of outdoor and water resistant building materials easily found at your local home improvement spot. The track has over a hundred linear ft of running area and is 3 feet or wider in the turns. For the daring they can run it in a figure 8 or put in a piece of barrier to get things flowing in one direction. The track is as fun to drive on as these guys are to hang out with, the dips and run off grass really bring home the scale realism.
Recession Raceway Gallery
Huge thanks’ to Tom, Joe and Paul and I can’t wait to see what’s next for this REAL back yard racetrack!
I received a set of Atomic’s new wheels for the Mini-Z Moto. I hadn’t put much thought around it but I realized that these are in fact aluminum wheels while the stock Mini-z Moto wheels are cast out of a heavier metal. On a Mini-Z, switching to an aluminum wheel you rarely end up saving weight. Would the weight savings translate to lower rotational mass and quicker acceleration? Would a motorcycle’s handling greatly be impacted by lower the weight of the wheels? Let’s find out!
Well to say that I was excited to see that Kyosho was bringing out a Mini-Z Motorcycle would be a major understatement. Then you toss on the layer of details that Mini-Z is known for and that it was going to be a replica of the Yamaha M1 and I pretty much had to buy a bib cuz I was non-stop drooling at every pic I could find. Being the type that can’t stand running the same rig as everyone else has I had to put my spin on it. For me there is no better rider than Valentino Rossi when it comes to on-road motorcycle racing so I had to pay homage to him on this one. Like most involved in this Hobby I love all things with wheels and details and some of what I collect are scale motorcycles. Maisto is a huge supplier of said bikes that can usually be had for under 5 bucks at you’re favorite toy stop. Doing a quick search I found they made a copy of his 06 ride with Camel being the lead sponsor. Oddly enough I didn’t have these in my stable yet so I ordered up a couple. The details and fit and finish are really good on these scale beauties right out of the box so the only problem was could I make them fit onto the Mini-Z Moto that is already too small to possibly have as much going on as it does. Keep reading to get the details of the build.. READ MORE
The Big Squid crew has some exclusive test footage of the new competitor to the Kyosho Mini-z, the Warrior 1:28 AWD racing chassis. I was lucky enough to receive a test unit and have received permission share the video publicly.
Sometimes people think I’m crazy but I just don’t mind handing over many of my R/C cars to just about anyone. The beauty of this car alone made most people shy away. It wasn’t until I told them it was a review car for Big Squid that they’d take the wheel. Assuring them not to worry if it broke (as that is exactly what we wanted to know) they took the helm at 4 different venues with only a loose rear wing to show for it. So what’s it like to drive one of these things? Read on… READ MORE
Those who get into Mini-z racing come to understand there are a LOT of options for tuning their cars. When I visit the local hobby shops the first questions are almost always “I want to buy upgrades for my car, what should I get first?”. Reflex Racing now answers that question with these Reflex Team Packages and back it up with a nice discount too.
I picked up my personal Kyosho F1 this Saturday during a race at HobbyTown USA in Orland Park, IL. The first impressions by all the Mini-z regulars were how awesome the car looked. The scale looks are very impressive in person.
The car comes packed with a clear bumper and screws to mount it. It may take away from the looks a little but if you’re racing this car, you are going to want to install it. With this particular F1 body the rear wing is removed along with the main body instead of remaining behind on the chassis. The new 2.4ghz board includes the new Chase mode, ICS connector, and gyro connector. The gyro is installed where the crystal use to go (just south of the board in the picture). The new board is also much shorter than the old AM board. With this 2.4ghz package they elected to route the receiver wire flat so no need for through-holes in the F1 body.
Kyosho MF-015 F1 chassis unboxing gallery
The underside shot of the body shows a little more detail on how the rear wing mounts. The rear end of the car remains the same as well the underside battery bay.
Kyosho MF-015 F1 chassis unboxing gallery
My favorite pic has to be of the car head on. Here you can see the front suspension also remains the same. In the comparison shots of the old F1 and this new one, you’ll see the difference in board length. Also, you’ll see they went with the same front servo setup. I was psyched to see they went with an MR-03 type board (2.4ghz, ICS, Gyro connector) but it appears they didn’t transition to the coreless servo motor. My guess is the MR-03 required far more gearing and it would be difficult to pull this off in the F1 with the tight space up front.
Kyosho MF-015 F1 chassis unboxing gallery
In the end, what we are getting is a new F1 body design and an updated electronics package that includes ASF 2.4ghz, ICS connection, gyro connection (and a place on the chassis to mount it), and chase mode. I will note I was happy to see tires that could be raced where included. The rears are 20 degree tires (Kyosho’s softest) and 40 degree up front.
If you live in the Chicago land area and are looking to see this car in person and take it for a test spin, the Chicago Mini R/C club will be touring with it at their upcoming races in Elmhurst, Berkeley, and Orland Park. We’ll also be looking for test drive input from Mini-z enthusiasts, larger scale R/C drivers, as well as beginners for our upcoming review on Big Squid!
Kyosho has updated their Mini-Z F1 with the new MF-015 chassis. These are expected to see US soil Jan. 20th with shipments going out to dealers shortly afterwards. The first two will be based on the McLaren Mercedes MP4-25 Vodaphone #1 and #2 car. This is an ASF (Auto Select Frequency) 2.4ghz chassis that you pair to an existing 2.4ghz ASF transmitter. If you haven’t seen one of these in person, you owe it to yourself to check it out in person. The scale detail is astounding in such a small package (1:24 scale)
Updates include a new RA-24T receiver/speed control that offers 2.4ghz and some pretty trick onboard electronics. “Chase Mode” which is activated via a 3rd channel on your compatible transmitter. This is like KERS on the full scale F1 cars in that the cars can operate at 70% throttle and activate a 3 second boost to 100% throttle for overtaking. There is also a port to accept Kyosho’s Gyro to activate onboard stability control (steering and throttle).
To run the car you’ll need 4 x AAA batteries (rechargeable highly recommended), and a compatible 2.4ghz ASF transmitter. Kyosho recommends the EX-5UR as it included the 3rd channel if you wish to use Chase Mode . You can also use KO Propo radios that accept the 2.4ghz ASF module or 2 channel Kyosho KT-18 (no “Chase Mode” support). Optionally you can get the I.C.S. USB adapter to adjust many different onboard settings including adjusting how many “boosts” everyone gets in Chase Mode to act as a form of handicapping.
Ok, we are still going to fill this under rumor because there has not been an official announcement yet, BUT word on the street is that Kyosho has a 1/18 scale Mini-Z Motorcycle (moto racer) in the works! A few details: It’s about 4 inches long, will come with 2.4ghz radio, Lipo battery, top speed about 12mph, and ships around March/April. There are one or two other details we have heard, but I think since this isn’t an official announcement, and our info has been on the DL, we will hold off a little bit.
Watching the video, you can see there is some seriously awesome gyroscope technology going on here because it stays up-right at an extremely low speed, and it also looks pretty agile in the turns.
After the break is a video of what may be a prototype version of it in action. READ MORE