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What's new: Thursday, March 31st, 2011

It looks like the guys over at MaxAmps have released yet another ridiculously awesome battery for all you 10th scale bashers out there. The new 100C Super Sport 5250mah 7.4v Bullet lipo pack features a 3-year 300 cycle guarantee, a true 100C rating, and is capable of charging at 5C. The hard case pack should give you about 30 minutes of runtime and 40+ MPH speeds in most brushless setups. Best of all, these packs can be had at a special introductory price of only $89.99!

Blaze on over to MaxAmps and check ‘em out!

VTX10 Viper RC

We met some of the guys from Viper RC back at iHobby, and again at RCX. We just got a little PR from them about their new VTX 10/10R electronic speed control. Built for 1/10th and 1/12 scale vehicles, the VTX 10 is a sensored system, has a dynamic drag brake and timing boost, SBEC for up to 7.0V, battery cut off, ESC temperature and motor temperature protection, WATERPROOF case, ability to use their ProGauge system for tuning and 8 default profiles.

The VTX10 has a 540/6.5T motor limit, and the VTX10R has a 550/No limit setup.

Visit Viper RC for more details.

A big and hearty Congratulations to HPI Racing and the Savage Flux HP, The Ultimate Basher!

Nine days ago we started March Bash-ness with 16 trucks. After all of you guys cast nearly 6,000 votes (most of which were legitimate!) over that time, 15 trucks have been sent home and we now have a winner.  The Ultimate Basher as decided by the fans is HPI Racing’s Savage Flux HP!  Though just barely, when the final vote was cast, the Savage Flux and Slash 4×4 were only separated by 2%!  The Savage Flux HP squeezed out the win with 51% of the nearly 1,000 votes cast over the last two days!  It was so close that we weren’t really sure who would win until the poll was closed.

While the Savage Flux HP drives away with the trophy, Traxxas fans shouldn’t feel defeated, it was a hard fought battle and the Slash 4×4 is certainly a worthy runner-up, just making it to the final was a feat in itself.  This was a fantastic showdown between two heavyweight contenders, and the back and forth fight was proof of that.

Giveaway Info: I imagine you’re all wanting to know about the giveaway.  We will be announcing the winner this Friday, April 1st, after we go through all the entries and get the official prize from HPI, so check back then for the official drawing.  But you know, we’re in such a giving mood after this and we’re so close to 500 Fans on our FaceBook page, that Brian has decided to give something else away when we break 500 Fans.  So click on over to our FaceBook page and click the big Like button at the top, then keep an eye on the front page for news about what we’re going to give away when 500 falls.

Cubby

hey fellas,
First off my name is Vern. My brothers an i have been racing the pavement with our rc cars since i was old enough to hold a controller. Well it has come time to let my son run the ropes. For the past six weeks i have been looking for a truck thats close to my traxas slash and losi strike for a starter for my 4 year old. i was on youtube and found a couple of duratrax evader dt videos by or for big squid rc. Soooo i looked in to the truck, and for a few more days i pondered. I found more videos and one some one drove it full speed in to a curb! wow! Any way just want to thank everyone at big squid for the forums and and honest opinions and product stress test”curb test”i didnt feel like u were tring to sell a prouduct. the reviews were real and solid. Unlike my local hobby shop where i can never get a strait answer on what a product is worth and how durable it is. i ended up getting the duratrax dt for my son. Well now he sleeps with it right next to him he is so proud that him and i can race. thanks for helping me make the right choice. as far as my sons
driving, nothings broke but mybe my pride,crushed in a drag race. i didnt change my remote battries never got off the starting line. I hope to see Big Squid around for years to come! my next rc will follow one of your reviews and product videos!

“may the pavement lead to dirt, and dirt to epic jumps ” safe driving! A new fan of big squid rc.
vernon r.

p.s
i told my friends about you.

Cubby- Thanks for the kind words Vernon.

BigSquidRC is a site aimed right at the vast majority of people in our hobby-backyard bashers. And while bashing, drivers hit things like curbs Really hard. Our readers slam curbs on a daily basis, we pound curbs with our personal vehicles, so while testing it’s only fitting we tag a few curbs wide open. Some manufactures hide their heads in the sand thinking their trucks will never take such a pounding, and if they do, they consider it customer “abuse”. Fortunately for you core bashers there are other companies that know what really goes on in the real world and build their products to take some pretty gnarly hits. Glad to hear your son is loving his Duratrax DT, it is a seriously tough (and fun!) truck.

ps- You must have told a lot of friends because our numbers are through the roof lately!


Hey guys,

After getting back in the hobby, I’ve noticed that lipo/brushless systems are all the rage now and have touched every facet of rc. So I’m wondering. where are the 1/8th scale brushless truggies? I’ve seen several companies with their versions of brushless buggies but no truggies. Associated had their RC8Te but was discontinued after a short while. I thought the brushless truggy scene
would’ve exploded when the Mamba Monster systems (and other large brushless systems) were released. Any insight? Did I miss something?
ThanX,
Joe

Cubby- What’s up Joe? Thanks for the email.

IMO truggies can be considered superior to buggies in many areas. Truggies handle bomb’ed out tracks better than buggies do and truggies make better bash/jump machines because they have greater ground clearance. The bigger truggy tires handle bumps better, and there is more room inside for higher cell counts and/or larger motors.

And no Joe, you didn’t miss anything, but consumers have voted with their wallets, and that vote says they prefer E-buggy over E-truggy. And why is that? I think it boils down to two reasons- keep reading..
READ MORE

What's new: Wednesday, March 30th, 2011

I have to admit the excitement of the final March-Bashness round is killing us! Myself, Jeff, Cubby, Evan, Wrench, Adam and the rest of the gang are sitting here watching the screens and counting down till midnight! I can’t thank you all enough for casting your votes! The kind words about how we ran it, (not just asking for votes and then picking a motorcycle) and emails have been awesome!

The back and forth today between the two trucks has been insane! I couldn’t believe it when the count was around 630 votes and they were tied!! We really do appreciate all of our fans and the support! Thank you all!
-Brian

Animus 18SC from Helion

So remember a few days ago when we mentioned the news about Mike Gillette, Gil Losi Jr., and Jason Corl launching a new company called Firelands Group? Well it’s amazing what you can find on the internet these days as we have scooped some more info. First off, here’s a nice big picture! The info we have been able to gather from about a zillion phone calls isn’t much but here is what we know.

Type: 1/18th Short Course Truck
Drive Train: 4WD, shaft driven
Radio: 2.4ghz INCLUDED!
Power Plant: Brushed Motor.
Kit: Totally RTR, and includes a NiMH battery!
Shipping: Mid May
Price: $99!

This is all we could muster. Those janitors over at Firelands are tight lipped!

The HelionRC.com website isn’t up and running yet, but we will leave the link because it should be up soon.

LD Racing Products has some great looking new wheels for fans of The Tiniest Crawler of All, the Losi Micro Crawler.  The new 8Trax wheels are available in nice and heavy aluminum for those times when you need the weight, or lighter, black Delrin for times when you don’t.  They are a great looking wheel, if I ever get around to buying a Micro Crawler or 4×4 Trail Trekker I might have to grab a set.

The 8Trax are available now, exclusively through RPP Hobby (aluminum, delrin) for $38.99  for a set of four.  Check out LD Racing’s website for more info.

Ken block E-Revo

Our friends from Traxxas just released these pictures of the special edition (read 1 of 1) Ken Block E-Revo. It’s got his signature paint, green beadlock rims, huge Chevron tires, custom hubs and Exo-Carbon wing! This was made special for Ken and is a one-off. Enjoy the pics, I dig those HUGE beadlocks!

Dear Traxxas, your killing us here! We know the 1/16th scale vehicles are fun and popular, but teasing us with some bigger scale stuff, without any new announcements any is making us sad. :(

What's new: Tuesday, March 29th, 2011

THE Venom 1/10th Gambler SC RTR Review

From: Venom
Direct Link: Venom Gamber – Short Course Truck

Review by Cubby
Photos by- Sam “The Photog”

Venom Gambler

Ever since the Traxxas Slash was introduced to the world, short course trucks have been all the rage. The rc world was used to driving alien looking “stadium trucks” and “buggies”, but instantly fell head over heals for the realism and just plain cool factor that the scale looking Slash had to offer. With the Slash being such an overwhelming hit it was obvious that there were going to be plenty more short course trucks on the way from other manufactures.

At Nuremburg 2010 Venom announced they were tossing their hat into the 2wd short course ring with a truck dubbed the “SCX”. Venom certainly isn’t know for being a car manufacture, they are known more for their batteries, heli’s and such, but it is always good to see more choices in a hot product category. Well, after over a year of development, the Venom truck is now hitting hobby shelves renamed the “Gambler“.

Venom is selling both a brushed and brushless version of the Gambler, this week I am reviewing the brushed RTR version. So just how does it stack up to the competition????
READ MORE

Click to embiggen

[Update: Polls and comments are closed! Thanks for voting and hit up the front page tomorrow for the official crowning of The Ultimate Bashing Truck, then check back on Friday for the announcement of the giveaway winner and what he or she has won!]

[Update from Brian: I have to admit the excitement of the final March-Bashness round is killing us! Myself, Jeff, Cubby, Evan, Wrench, Adam and the rest of the gang are sitting here watching the screens and counting down till midnight! I can’t thank you all enough for casting your votes! The kind words about how we ran it, (not just asking for votes and then picking a motorcycle) and emails have been awesome!

The back and forth today between the two trucks has been insane! I couldn’t believe it when the count was around 630 votes and they were tied!! We really do appreciate all of our fans and the support! Thank you all! ]

[Update: Apparently there’s some morons people out there still that don’t know that we can track every vote that happens on these polls.  Spamming the poll with a few dozen votes for your favorite truck is just going to make us mad.  Alright Adam, we still rolled back your votes, but apology accepted.]

Round 3 of March Bash-ness was an exciting one to watch.  Was Traxxas going to make the final?  Would the 5B knock off the Slash 4×4 and guarantee the March Bash-ness Crown went to HPI even before the last round?  Around the office we were all on the edge of our seats as those two battled for a spot in the final round.  Lucky for Traxxas, the fans came out and rallied around the short course master.  The Slash 4×4 took an early lead and never gave it up, though the 5B did battle back a few times, it just didn’t have enough momentum to pass the Slash at the finish line.  The Savage Flux HP managed to do something no other truck could in this bracket, and that is fend off an orange and black ATTK from the Blitz.  It not only fended off the Blitz, the Savage Flux managed to completely dominate the voting, racing away with well over 2/3 of the vote.

And then there were two.

So it’s come down to this.  Savage Flux HP vs. Slash 4×4.  HPI Racing vs. Traxxas.  Two bashing superstar companies are facing off, and you get to decide which one offers the Ultimate Bashing Truck.  There’s no telling who’s going to win, but one thing we know is that it will be a hard fight to the very end.  This round of voting will go until 11:59pm CDT, March 30th.  The winner will be crowned on the 31st.  This is it, the big showdown, the final faceoff, the last dance, [insert last cliche here].  Who will win?

Giveaway info: We know why you’re all here, you want to win something.  Here’s how to get your name in the hat.  The comments on this post are open, vote in the poll below, then drop down to the comments section and leave us a note, make sure you enter a valid email address in the email box.  You must leave a comment to be entered! The comments section will close at the same time as the poll, 11:59pm CDT, March 30th, no entries will be accepted after that time.  After the poll and comments are closed, we’ll collect all the names and a random commenter will be chosen from all who entered.  We will announce the winner soon after.  The prize has yet to be determined.  If the Savage Flux wins, then HPI will be offering up a new truck, though not necessarily a Savage Flux HP.  If the Slash 4×4 wins, Traxxas will be offering up one of their trucks, though not necessarily a Slash 4×4.  Rules: Only one entry per person, a valid email address is required, you must be 13 years of age or older, or have your parent or legal guardian enter for you.  Keep the comments civil, no flame wars.

We would very much like to thank HPI Racing and Traxxas for their support of March Bash-ness, without either of them this wouldn’t have been the success it’s been.  And we wouldn’t have an awesome prize to give away.  So make sure you give them some gratitude when you get a chance.

After you’ve voted, make sure you help spread the word via Twitter, FaceBook, and email!  It’s because we have a huge, dedicated, and growing audience that we can put on events and giveaways like this.  The more people you convert to the Dark Side, the more stuff we can give away!

So without further ado, if you’re on the home page click the Read More button to start voting, else, scroll down and get your click on.

READ MORE

What's new: Monday, March 28th, 2011

HobbyKing Ok, put this in the ‘we didn’t see that coming’ category. But it looks like mega online retailer HobbyKing.com is going to be opening up stores! Here’s a quote from their head guy Anthony Hand:

“In an ever increasing effort to drive more value into the R/C market HobbyKing has begun piloting retail store franchises in select regions around the globe, underscoring HobbyKing’s commitment to the R/C industry.
Each store will retail both HobbyKing and other branded products and will also serve as a service center for warranty and technical support.
Products sold online can be serviced in-store as well as sent back to your local service center.
At a later stage ‘HobbyKing Store Front’s will be filling local internet orders and pre-ordering requested items from any one of HobbyKing’s warehouses locally and abroad.”

So I guess, watch for these places to start popping up all over the US! That can’t be a good thing for the mom & pop hobby stores that are already struggling to compete with online.

No, it’s not a new Traxxas vehicle. It may be something even better. Traxxas has signed on to support St. Jude Children’s Hospital in their quest to cure and prevent catastrophic diseases that strike children. Traxxas has joined with Amsoil, SPX, and Ford to race the St. Jude Children’s Hospital Mustang FE500S in the SCCA World Challenge GTS class. The car will be driven by Eric Foss, the 2009 SCCA Pro Racing Speed World Challenge Rookie of the Year. Fans can show their support by making donations or flexible pledges according to laps led, races won, or podium finishes in the Word Challenge series. Traxxas will also bring their full road show to four stops on the World Challenge circuit to rally up some support.

St. Jude Children’s Hospital has done some amazing things to advance the medical care in pediatrics and this is an awesome cause. It’s great to see companies that are successful paying it forward to help out where they can. Head on over to Traxxas and check out the write-up or head here to pledge your donation.

Cubby Hello rc community, yet another week blown right by us.

Monster Supercross update? Well….. Bel-Ray/Shift rider Chad Reed left Toronto Saturday night with the points lead in the Supercross class. Reed had a horrible 2010, and not many thought he’d even be in the hunt this year, but he’s proving otherwise. Reed finished second in Toronto, vaulting him into the points lead when it matters most- nearing the end of the season.

RV2 went into Toronto with the points lead, but had a horrible race (for the second week in a row) and finished up 9th. Ryan got a bad start in the main, then had a “racing incident” with Bubba on lap 3, he also pulled into the pits for a repair- put those three things together and he was lucky to break into the top 10 by the time the checkered flag fell.

Bubba also had his issues, dropping his bike in the first corner, then the RV2 incident, but eventually he worked his way up to 4th. Bubba can still win the 2011 SX title, but he has to be absolutely flawless the rest of the season, something he has been a lot of trouble with this year.

The star of the race was last years champion Ryan Dungey, who picked up his first win of the season in Toronto. Many “insiders” picked Dungey to win the 2011 title, but a broken chain dnf earlier in the season has kept Ryan behind in the points. It ain’t over till it’s over, Dungey is now second overall in points and is well positioned for his run at the title.

Formula 1 update? Well the opening round from Australia is now in the books, and it was one of the most boring races I’ve watching in some time. Vettel pwn’ed the field, with the biggest surprise being the big Russian Vitaly Petrov placing 3rd.

I saw the movie “Sucker Punch” the other day. There is bad, then there is unwatchable, then there is Sucker Punch. Yes, it is that bad. If you feel like going to watch it- rub your eyeballs with a brillo pad, then pour battery acid in them. Trust me on this one, that would be more fun than watching Sucker Punch.

BigSquid has been making the news lately with our “March Bashness” event/poll/contest. Around the office we thought it’d be some little competition determining what our readers think is the best basher on the market, but it has really blown up. Thanks to everyone who has voted so far, and feel free to spread the word to your rc comrades. Voting for the final 4 is going on now, with the finals starting on Tuesday morning. (Or do like we have around the office, placing little “wagers” on who we think are going to win!)

Anybody else miss Mike Walkers Twister motors? Back in the day they were some of the best available, they ripped hard! Maybe somebody cool will buy the rights to the name and do something special with it…. I do like to dream don’t I?

JConcepts shot out a PR last week about their new officially licensed 2011 Ford F-250 Super Duty body intended for Traxxas 2wd and 4wd Stampedes. Sweet looking body from Jason and his crew, but perhaps even better is their new body lowering kit for the Stampede. The JConcepts lowering kit includes new body mounts that position the truck body closer to the chassis for a more realistic look. The Stampede looks sooo much better with the lowering kit, I hope one ends up on every Pede ever made.

Air Age Media (pubs of RCCA) have decided to expand their RCX hobby show to other cities this year. Strangely they’ve chosen to host an RCX less than 2 months before the iHobby expo, and hold it in Chicago. An RCX show 6 months before (or after, same difference) iHobby makes sense, but less than 2 months before and in the same city, now that’s just begging for a flop. On a better note- Orlando Florida will also be getting an RCX show, which should work out well. Floridians are freak’n rabid about rc, and most have never hit a hobby show before, so it should blow up huge. I dig trade shows, and consumers have proven they dig’em too, so the more the merrier (if the venue and dates are well thought out anyways).

The Cactus Classic was quite interesting this year. Seeing “The Dirtinator” Kinwald under the AE banner was interesting (and Awesome!), seeing Mark Pavidis with his head shaved was interesting (he looks tough that way), but….

Some people just don’t F’n get it. At Cactus some of the A-main uber factory shoes didn’t think their Pro-4 SC trucks could complete a 10 minute main without smoke’n their motors, so the race director held two 5 minute mains instead. Yes indeed, 4wd short course trucks arguable present the toughest load to a power system of any class. But…. how big of a pu$$y are you to say your equipment can’t make a 10 minute main now days? Seriously, grow some stones guys… drop a few teeth and let’r eat.

To finally digress, some people just do Not get brushless and Lithium technology, and some of these are considered among the elite in the rc community. Some people are stuck in the year 1990 thinking a 5 minute race is all an rc car is capable of. It’s sickening to us that do “get” BL and Lithium tech to see old school racer types (especially those that are factory guys that carry more influence) not be able to make more than 5 minutes, yet claim that running on 3 or 4S is “too fast”. These guys have no problem gearing their 2S systems to the point of warp core meltdowns, yet are scared to even try a high cell count system for fear it’ll be “too fast too drive”. They just don’t get it. But I do know this- if I were the race director at Cactus and someone came up to me complaining they couldn’t make a 10 minute main, I’d have no problem getting into the computer and bump’n that sucker up to 20, just for good measure. :)

That’s it for this week folks, support your LHS, local tracks and bash spots!

YOUR Cub Reporter