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Posts Tagged ‘vaterra

Vaterra halix upgrade hop-up servo Xpert
While the stock servo in the Vaterra Halix works fine for general bashing, to go truly high performance a better servo needs to be installed. A better servo will not only be faster than the stock unit, but also have more power for keeping those big tires pointed where you intend them to be.

For our Halix project we decided to pop in an Xpert SM-5501HV. The 5501 has some impressive specs, .106 for speed and 270 oz-in of torque at 7.4 volts, and it is a digital servo, a requirement for use with the AVC system on the Halix.

Installing a Servo in the Halix -

1. Use a 2mm hex to remove the bolt out of the servo horn.

2. Use a 2mm hex to remove the 4 bolts holding in the servo.

3. Use a 2mm hex to remove 2 screws securing the receiver box lid.

4. Unplug the servo wire from the receiver and cut the zip-ties that hold the wire down.

Hit the “Read More” button to check out all the rest of the installation steps.
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Vaterra Halix hop-up tie rod turnbuckles
This week in our Vaterra Halix upgrade series we’ll be showing you how to install new turnbuckles. There are a couple of good reasons to do this, the first being that the stock units can break during hard bashing, the second is that the stock units are not adjustable. Being able to adjust tire camber and front toe-in comes in mighty handy for dialing in your Halix to your local bash spot.

How to install new tie-rods on the Halix-

1. Use the four way wrench that came with your truck to remove the wheels.

2. Use a 2mm hex for the bolt heads and use either the supplied four way wrench or needle nose pliers for the nuts to remove the stock turnbuckles.

3. We used two pairs of Traxxas #3644 ($7 per pair) for the front and rear camber rods. When you install these take note that one side has a wide ball in the rod end, while the other uses a narrow. On the Halix you will want to install the wide ball towards the hub, with the narrow mounted to the shock tower. The Traxxas tie-rods are also directional, there is a groove in each tie-rod that donates direction. You will want the groove on all the tie-rods pointing the same direction. This is done so during adjustment the same rotation of the tie-rod will result in either tightening or loosening for all six units.

4. We used a pair of Traxxas #3745 ($8 per pair) for the steering turnbuckles, these are slightly longer than the 3644s and work well in the Halix.

5. We will also note that we drilled new camber holes in the rear tower of our Halix. This was done to lower the roll center and change the camber gain on the rear of the truck. The higher mount gives the rear of our Halix a more planted feel in the low bite conditions we normally drive on. We used a 7/64 bit to make the new holes and removed the bumper and top of the rear shocks to gain easier access.

6. After all six tie rods and the wheels are mounted back up, you will need to adjust camber. You will need to set your Halix on a flat surface and use an RPM #70992 (or better yet their #70950, $12) camber gauge and a turnbuckle wrench. We used a slightly modified Lunsford wrench to set front and rear camber at negative 1 degrees. Also of note, set camber with a battery in the truck while it is sitting at its normal ride height.

7. One step left to go, adjust the front toe-in. We used our Lunsford turnbuckle wrench with a metal ruler to set toe-in to zero degrees. Zero degrees is a fairly common setting that works well on the Halix. Setting the toe-in is easy, we used the metal ruler to measure the distance between the centers of the tires from the front side, then from the rear, until they both measured the same. Many people just “eyeball” the toe, as long as both front tires are pointed straight forwards, not in towards each other or pointing outwards, you will be close to zero toe.

8. With the turnbuckles bolted up and the camber and toe-in set, your Halix is ready to drive. It took us about 30 minutes to do the job, we have yet to break one of the new turnbuckles, and the additional tuning flexibility has allowed us to really dial the truck in.

Next week we’ll be installing a new servo, until then you can Click HERE to read more Halix hop-up articles on BigSquidRC.

MIP CVD Vaterra Halix
The previous hop-ups we performed on the Vaterra Halix didn’t take much elbow grease. Installing pre-mounted wheels & tires can take as little as 5 minutes, while installing a pre-painted body might take less than half an hour. On the flip side of the coin, installing MIP CVDs on the Halix might be the most time consuming hop-up to be found. While installing CVDs on most vehicles is a snap, because of the design of the Halix, both differentials must be removed and fully dissembled, meaning this job might take you well over an hour. However, the stock driveshafts have a tendency to break, so installing MIP CVDs should be considered an absolute must if you plan on bashing hard.

How to install MIP CVDs on a Vaterra Halix -

1. Bust the MIP CVDs out of their package and fully assemble them. Follow their supplied directions, taking extra note to use the supplied thread locking compound on the grub screws used to secure the CVD pins, and make sure the grub screws mate up to the flat spots on the pins. Also make sure to use the supplied grease on the mating surfaces to reduce friction.

2. Use the four way wrench that came with your Halix to remove the wheels.

3. Use a 2mm hex wrench to remove the wheel hexes from the axles.

Hit the “Read More” button to check out the rest of the article after the jump.

READ MORE

TBR Basher Front Bumper Vaterra Halix
The folks over at T-Bone Racing have a new All Terrain Basher Series front bumper for the popular Vaterra Halix. This ultra tough bumper is made for those big slams you encounter while out bashing, giving added protection to the front of your Halix. The easy to install bumper mounts under the chassis and comes with T-Bone’s lifetime warranty.

The part number for the TBR Halix bumper is #66101, it has a street price of $18, they are available right now, and you can get more information at This Link over on the TBR website.

You can find more TBR news at This Link on BigSquidRC.

Vaterra Craigslist
It has been reported today that a Naperville Illinois man bought a Vaterra Nissan GTR off of Craigslist for $75,000. While a Vaterra sells for under $300 at a local hobby shop, because of the cars incredible scale realism a seller was able to pass one off as the full size version in a Craigslist ad for 75 grand. It just goes to show that there is a sucker born every minute.

Click Here for more rc news on BigSquidRC.

Pro-Line Vaterra Halix Trencher
Changing to better tires is commonly known as the best “Bang for the Buck” upgrade that you can do to any rc car. While the Vaterra Halix comes with decent tires, we are shooting for top-of-the-line with our project truck so better units were a must.

We consider Pro-Line Trenchers the best all around bashing tires that money can buy, so that’s exactly what we installed on our project truck. To be specific we went with part number #1170-12, Trenchers that came pre-mounted on Desperado 2.8″ wheels. Those particular units are the perfect size for the Halix, come in a long wearing M2 compound, have the proper size hex, and are only .1 oz heavier (6.1 oz stock, 6.2 oz for each Trencher/Desperado) than the stock units.

If you are noob to the hobby, changing out wheels & tires is the easiest mod you can perform. On the Halix all it takes is removing the four wheels nuts with the 4 way wrench that was included with the truck, mounting up the new kicks, and putting the four nuts back on, a process that takes under 5 minutes. A couple of tips for the noobs – make sure the hex on the axle is properly inserted into the wheel, and make sure the wheels nuts are re-installed very tightly to prevent them from working loose.

After installing the Trenchers our Halix had much more traction on dirt and grass surfaces. The big lugs on the Trenchers just love to chew up and spit out loamy dirt, and the Trenchers are equally good at finding traction on grass. The difference was night and day, and we highly recommend this upgrade for your Halix.

Our next hop-up article will show you what it takes to install a new body on your Halix, until then check out This Link to read more how-to articles on BigSquidRC.

MIP CVD Halix
All you Vaterra Halix owners can now rejoice, the crew over at MIP have designed some ultra-durable CVDs for your truck. The units that MIP designed for the Halix feature splined telescoping shafts that should handle a lot more power than stock without breakage.

* Heat treated, all metal design
* Grease and thread gel included
* 100% made in the USA

The part number is #14185, they have a retail price of $80, and you can get more information at This Link over on the MIP website.

Click Here for the first TGIF Mystery Link of the day.

Pro-Line Shocks Vaterra Halix GIF
One of our favorite all around bash machines here at BigSquidRC is the Vaterra Halix monster truck. While out of the box it is great fun to bash, we are doing a series of hop-up articles to make it truly epic. This week we’ll start off the series by upgrading the shocks.

The stock shocks on the Vaterra Halix work fine, but use plastic bodies and we were looking for truly top-of-the-line performance. With that in mind we contacted Pro-Line Racing and ordered up two sets of their high-end Pro Spec Shocks. To fit the Halix we used the “long/rear” length, and also ordered their heaviest shock springs (super hard, part #6308-20, $8 a pair) to handle the weight of the Halix.

The Pro-Line shocks come with 3 different sets of pistons to choose from, after some testing we ended up running the heaviest damping pistons (smallest holes) in the front shocks, and medium holed pistons in the rear. For shock oil we ended up running 40 weight Associated in the front and 30 in the rear.

The Pro-Spec shocks mounted up without issue using the supplied hardware. The “long/rear” Pro-Spec shocks are slightly longer than the stock front shocks, and slightly shorter than the stock rears, but by using alternate mounting holes in the a-arms this was not an issue.

While out bashing the Pro-Specs provided top notch performance. We set ours up a bit on the heavy side which worked extremely well in high bite conditions, as well as when hucking big wood ramps. The Pro-Specs soaked up big hits like a champ and we never had an issue with them, even after extended abuse. To boil it down, the Pro-Specs felt like we had bolted up a finely tuned set of “A-Kit” factory suspension, they worked that well.

Next week in part #2 of our hop-up series we’ll be mounting up some new wheels and tires. Until then you can Click Here to read more hop-up articles right here on BigSquidRC.

Vaterra 1967 Ford Mustang
Also introduced at the Nurnberg Toy Fair is a great looking 1967 Ford Mustang from Vaterra RC. Like the other on-road cars from Vaterra, the ’67 Mustang features incredible scale looks on its solid V100-S platform.

* Compatible with Horizon’s AVC technology
* Officially licensed body
* 4wd with sealed diffs
* Low profile tires on 54mm wheels
* Scale realistic brake discs and calipers
* 15 turn Dynamite brushed power system
* Comes with Spektrum DX2E 2.4GHz radio system
* Waterproof

The part number is #VTR03017 and the Mustang should hit dealer’s shelves at the $289 price point. For more information on the official Vaterra website simply Click Right Here.

Hit up This Link for more Vaterra news on BigSquidRC.

Vaterra Ford Raptor 4wd RTR
The Vaterra crew has just announced at Nurnberg a new 4wd off road truck. Their new Ford Raptor Pre-runner comes with many features that bashers want like waterproofing, brushless power, and 4wd. Some of its other features and specifications include-

* AVC- Active Vehicle Control technology
* Officially licensed Ford Raptor body
* Capable of 55+ mph on 3S LiPo
* Long travel suspension
* Beadlock wheels
* Dynamite 3300Kv 4 pole brushless motor
* Spektrum DX2E radio
* Metal gear VTV differentials
* Length- 22.36″
* Width- 11.65″

The part number for the Vaterra Raptor is VTR03009 and it has a street price of $449. Check out This Link for more information over on the official Vaterra website.

Click Here for more Vaterra RC news right here on BigSquidRC.

ASK Cubby

“Question
I’m thinking of buying a hellion dominus, can a lipo be used in the truck in its stock form?
thank you,
Frank B.”

Cubby- Yo to the yo Franky B, thanks for taking the time to shoot out an email.

For those not familiar with the Helion Dominus, it’s Helion’s 4wd 10th scale short course truck. It has an affordable price point, $199, and won March Bashness a couple years ago, which is voted on strictly by our readers. We liked the one we got to review, the Dominus is a basic, affordable, bash machine.

So… does it do Lipo in stock form? You are gonna love this answer, yes and no.

Yes you can! If you use a Lipo that has a relatively small form factor and you don’t mind driving without an LVC (low voltage cut-off).

No you can not! If you use a ROAR sized Lipo and want some low voltage protection.

Now… the BigSquid Bash Crew doesn’t really freak over the lack of an LVC. We routinely drive vehicles that do not have an LVC in their speedo. We have learned that when you first start feeling a pack getting soft you pull off and re-charge. However, if you are a noobie noob, an LVC can come in handy to keep you from over-discharging your Lipo pack.

Also of note, we ran Lipo in our test truck, a ROAR sized one at that, but to fit such a pack requires some elbow grease. You can find the details on what it takes Here, but if you don’t feel like doing any modding, you might want to look at another platform.


“Send to Cubby
Who you think the number one company that makes bashing trucks and cars is, all my friends say Traxxas but I like HPI the best.
Shiloh F.”

Cubby- Hey now Shiloh, what’s up and be sure to shoot Brian your snail mail so we can hook ya up with an uber BSRC sticker set.

So who do I think the numero uno manufacture (<- sorry guy from last week, LOL) of bash machines is? Wow, my cell is gonna blow up tomorrow for answering this one, but of course that isn't a deterrent to me.

Well... it's not Traxxas, that’s for sure. I sure like their parts availability, but that’s about it.

HPI- has put out solid basher gear for years upon years, but no doubt they’ve had their issues the last couple of years. They didn’t release much last year, and what they did seemed to be drift/on-road oriented, which is fine for some, but not for the people I hang with. My crew needs a machine that works on pavement as well as hucking vert ramps. Oh and, the whole Octane thing…. oooofffaahh….

ARRMA- is known as Durango’s basher line, and they certainly do have some kick butt machines. Their line-up is modern, their marketing is coming together, all they need is one big 4wd gnar-core bash truck to be on top of the heap.

Thunder Tiger- TT has a winner with their epic G3 platform, but some of their lower-end models could use some freshening up.

ECX- still a relatively new brand, they got off to a slightly slow start, but their line-up now days is real solid. While some may hold their very low price points against them, we don’t care about such things here, if they work, they work, and we drive Torments and Ruckuses nearly every day.

Vaterra- is my preferred basher line-up (at the moment). Ya, they are still new to the scene, and it will take another 3-5 years of marketing to cement their name to an average hobbyist, but the product they’ve put out thus far is amazingly good. Pretty much everything in their line-up has class leading looks, while the platforms underneath are typically solid bash machines. Hot looks, decent price points, and vehicles that can survive a good hucking off your roof, now that’s what bashing is all about.

However Shiloh… if you were to go around the table and ask every member of the BSRC Bash Crew what their favorite is, I can assure you there would be several different answers. We have guys that are big fans of HPI, big fans of Axial, and some that even still like Traxxas. And… just because our answers might be different, it doesn’t mean a single one of them is wrong. What’s best for me might suck for you, while the best brand for you might just not work for me.


That’s it for this week ya bunch of lugs, shoot me your vintage ’72 Unadilla GP t-shirts, questions, rants, and F1 swag to Cubby at BigSquidRC.com. If your letter makes the bigtime you’ll get a free sticker set, if I proclaim yours as “letter of the month” you get a brand spank’n new BSRC t-shirt.

YOUR Cub Reporter

RC4WD Winch Mount Twin Hammers
Looking for a sano way to mount a winch on your Vaterra Twin Hammers? If so, the folks over at RC4WD have you dialed. Their new winch mount provides a solid mounting point and looks slick.

* Black anodized finish
* CNC machined
* Easy installation
* Made for Bulldog winch
* Built in Fairlead
* Width- 1.79″
* Length- 2.23″
* Weight- 0.55oz

The part number for the winch mount is #Z-S1087, they have a street price of $29, and they are available right now. For more information hit up This Link over on the official RC4WD website.

Want more RC4WD news? Check out This Link.

Robinson Steel Spur Gear Vaterra Twin Hammers
Ever blow up the spur gear in your Vaterra Twin Hammers? Yes, we have too, but now Robinson Racing Products/RRP has come to the rescue. Their new hardened steel spur gear should be a lot harder to strip than the stock plastic unit.

There are two versions, #5078 for 78 tooth and #5087 for 87. Both spurs are priced at $27 and you can get more information by clicking This Link.

Want more Vaterra news? Check out This Link right here on BigSquidRC.