Earlier this summer, we have published few articles about our summer truggy project. We have picked a Team Associated RC8T Championship Edition to which we have installed a Reedy 121VR engine with a Reedy EFRA 2039 tuned pipe and two Team Associated DS1015 servos. The idea behind this project was to review and test the truck and its components during summer. The RC8TCE has gone through a total of two gallon of Byron Gen 2 fuel, this was enough to give us a good idea of the truck potential as a racer but also as a basher.
The RC8T Championship Edition:
The truck surprised me. I like how it feels planted not just when entering tight corners but also everywhere else on the track. It gives me confidence to push it harder. The first time I put the RC8TCE on a race track, I knew I can push it as hard as I can. In fact, the limit was not the truck, it was me. For my driving style, I’ve found the truck to have excellent “off power” steering but lacked of “on power” steering. I’ve tried few suspension tweaks and they have successfully solved my problems. No messing around or waste of time with complex tuning testings, once you know your truck, just few tweaks here and there are enough and the RC8T CE has always responded well to every suspension and steering tweaks I’ve made. I could have had better results if I had changed the differential setup but I wanted to keep them filled with the recommended weight of fluid. In the instruction manual, Team Associated recommends a 7/7/7 differential setup and I knew this is a very popular setups used by many racers including the majority of factory racers. This explains why I’ve wanted to keep the differential setup “box stock”. On my next tests, I’ll go with something a little bit different. Our track surfaces are looser than most of the others tracks. For my next tests, I’ll try a more basic 7/10/3 differential setup.
I’ve tried different tires but I’ve found that the included stock JConcepts Cross Hair worked the best. The compound was a little bit hard but they gave me good traction run after run with minimal tread wear.
The Reedy 121VR:
There are a bunch of good engines in the 200-250$ range. The Reedy 121VR is one of them. I’ve read many things about this engine. Some says the engine lacks of RPMs. Coupled to the EFRA 2039 tuned pipe, I’ve found the 121VR very fast while keeping all its punch out of the corners. On the top speed, the 121VR has no problem with others engines. My truggy was faster than most others with more expensive engines. The power band is very smooth and it helped me a lot to improve my driving style. It made my RC8TCE easier to drive. No “on/off” feeling while accelerating, just smooth and powerful accelerations.
All summer long, I’ve used Byron Gen 2 nitro fuel and the Reedy 121Vr really likes it. I never really checked engine temperature with a temp gun. I have tuned the engine by sound, smoke and performance. I then touched the engine head with my fingers to make sure it was not too hot. Ninety percent of the time, the temp gun stayed in my tool box and in case of incertitude, my temp gun has never displayed a temperature more than 260F. Once tuned, the Reedy 121VR keeps its tune and doesn’t need frequent adjustments. After two gallons, the compression and pinch are perfect. The engine has never flamed out or burned glow plugs. I only used two glow plugs during all the tests and this included the glow plug used for the break-in. The runtime is good, I have frequently got runtime between 9 and 10 minutes of runtime with a 150cc fuel tank, no fuel filter installed and with my heavy finger driving style.
This is definitively, an excellent engine and coupled to the EFRA 2039 tuned pipe, it has all the power and smoothness to satisfy me.
The DS1015 servos:
I don’t have much to say about the Team Associated DS1020 servos I’ve used for this project. In such vehicle, servos need to be powerful, fast and robust. This is no surprise for anyone who knows me that I’ve picked Team Associated servos. I have them in all my vehicles and they have never failed. This summer was no exception. The servos worked flawlessly run after run. They are bulletproof and have resisted to all crashes I had and they are many! I’ve set the steering and brake trims at the beginning of the summer, when I’ve built the truck and I never need to adjust them since. I love these servos!
What broke or worn out:
Even if I have tortured the RC8TCE, only one minor part broke. An axle pin that retains the wheel hex has broken. I think this is because I have tightened the retaining set screw too much. Also the stock clutch bell bearings and clutch shoes went south after two gallon of heavy metal action. They have blown out on the last run. To their defense, I must admit that the RC8TCE has been ran in mud few tires and mud is extremely hard on the clutch system because the tires get very heavy.
A front shock had leaking issues because I have incorrectly installed the internal bleeder and shock oil has gone out through the bleeding hole located on the shock cap. It took me 15 minutes to solve the problem and reinstall the shock.
The overall truggy condition is still perfect. No special wear appears and all the components are still as tight as when new. The suspension arms and all steering components are slop free. The entire drive train spins free and will need no maintenance for a while.
What I liked:
- Excellent performance, robust and easy to drive fast
- Respond well to tuning changes
- Excellent engine (Reedy 121VR)
What needs improvements:
- Not a big fan of the screws used for the battery box. I’d prefer body clips.
I’ve let many people drive my Team Associated RC8T Championship Edition. They all liked how the truck handles the track and how the Reedy 121VR performs. I believe that I’ve surprised many persons with my truck. The stock box setup is an excellent base for anyone, however I will have to spend a little more time on my truck to find out my “best” base setup according to my driving style.
This project truck sums up all I want from such a truck. The truck handles well, jumps well, it is robust, easy to work. The Reedy 121VR engines has a good fuel mileage, good torque and top speed and it is easy to tune. I can’t ask more to be satisfied.
More races are scheduled for my next summer race season, my main race class will be 1:8 nitro truck and I’m sure my RC8T CE will perform exactly as I expect. No doubt in my mind, the RC8T Championship Edition is a really racer right out of the box.
For more information, visit www.teamassociated.com