THE Cub Report – Battle Of The Scalers
No, it isn’t Monday, yet THE Cub Report lives. I was nowhere near a computer yesterday, so THE Cub Report is going live on a Tuesday. If you are a Reallyyy long time reader, you’ll remember that it used to go live on Fridays, and those were quite wild, as was the entire internet wayyy back then.
I am soooo not into the crawling or scale scene. If you know me, you already know that. Just like Ricky Bobby, I like to go Fast, but now is the time when crawling/scaling is really picking up some steam. It certainly took longer than I expected for a bunch of manufacturers to jump into, but it looks like the floodgates have opened. And while I am not a huge fan of the genre, I have put in my time with them, especially in the last year or so, so it is growing on me. I’ve hit multiple RECON G6 events, gone on numerous trail runs, and only now am I really getting my head wrapped around the scene.
Vaterra – Ya know, I was amazed when the Vaterra line was first announced at Nuremburg a number of years ago. Vaterra was all about two things- scale realism and the lifestyle of rc. The Vaterra line just looked so trick. Alas, it was simply too far ahead of its time, the general rc buying public just wasn’t quite ready for serious scale realism back then. However, they are now. Their Ascender platform is easily one of my favorites as it is quite reliable, and trail worthy, right out of the box. I am quite surprised we haven’t seen more variations of the Ascender, but then with the lull in the rc biz, nobody is putting out as many cars as they used to.
RC4WD – I have really changed my tune about RC4WD. If you remember our first RC4WD truck review, I basically went off hard on the truck we tested. However, most of the things I complained about are exactly what makes their trucks so awesome. Yes they are heavy, they have loads of real metal parts. No, they aren’t made to clear Supercross triples or for roof jumping. They are simply the highest end scale products on the market right now. And while their price points don’t fit into everyone’s budget, there are a lot of older (read- people with plenty of liquid cash) hobbyists who don’t blink an eye when clicking on “Checkout Now”. Furthermore, they are really pushing the envelope of product development. They can go from a raw idea to a fully licensed product sitting at your local hobby shop in seemingly no time at all. And… they really go above and beyond to put out shockingly awesome scale parts.
Redcat – Redcat, seriously? Yes, seriously. This is Not the Redcat from 5 years ago. What I like to call the “New Redcat” has put out a crawler that has been well received by the public and has another on the way that looks like it is gonna break some sales records. After looking at the numbers we get from posting about their Everest GEN-7 (now expected to drop in Oct), and talking to various retailers concerning pre-orders, I have the feeling you are going to start seeing a whole lot more Redcat on your local trails.
Axial Racing – Axial is the elephant in the crawling/scale room. They took a tiny genre and busted it wide open. Their SCX10 II is perhaps their finest offering, as it needs to be with the onslaught of new releases getting ready to hit hobby shops in the coming months.
HPI Racing – Oh yes, the HPI Venture. You serious hobbyists already know that HPI was bought out and that put quite the delay on HPI’s flagship scale crawler. I’ve got to hold, and even drive it, and it very much reminded me of HPI product during their heyday. It has a bunch of cool details and felt very high quality when I got to pick one over. Like we’ve been saying for a long time, the Venture is getting closer to hitting store shelves, but now it looks like it has been pushed back to October.
Traxxas – How about that TRX-4? When Traxxas gets into a genre, that is when you have pretty solid evidence that it going to be around a while. A lot has already been said about the TRX-4, but it is still amazing to see what they brought to the plate. The TRX-4 was exceptionally well done. It is rock solid right out of the box, it has features nobody else has, and it has that wonderful Traxxas parts support. I can’t wait to see what Traxxas puts out next on the TRX-4 platform.
Carisma – How about Ivan and his crew? The new Coyote looks righteous, and it sounds like the RTR is gonna ship for under 300 clams. Like everything Carisma, it has loads of awesome detailing, and the Coyote also has numerous features that the scale community is going to love. All I have to say about this one is… where’s mine?
Others – Yes, they are other crawlers on the market, and that number is only going to increase in the next 12 months. A lot of older hobbyists see it as a way to do something that is completely (well, nearly) stress free, while other people simply like having fun out in the woods with a truck that looks almost exactly like their full sized rig. Our hobby could certainly use a boost right now, so there are a lot of nervous people out there depending on the scale scene to keep blowing up. And right now, I don’t see it getting smaller at any time in the near future. Now, if we can just get all the trucks listed above into our hands for an all time Epic shootout, I would truly be happy.
Anyways party people, that’s it for this week. As always, support your local hobby shops and bash spots when ya can.
YOUR Cub Reporter