Team Associated RC18T Review
Introduced in 2004, the RC18T known an instant success. Few months later, the RC18MT was the second 1/18 truck from Team Associated to hit the market. The latest version is the RC18B, technically, this is the first 4wd buggy ever made by Team Associated.
Because the RC18T, MT and B share all the same components (except for bodies, tires and gear ratio), it’s easy to convert a RC18T into a RC18MT, RC18B or even a 1/18 truggy. All you need is a new front shock tower and a new body. Click here for more information on how to convert your RC18.
In this review, a RC18T is used but what applies to the RC18T also applies to the RC18B and RC18MT.
Four plastic oil filled shocks with coil over springs are used on each corner. Ride height can be quickly adjusted by adding or removing preload spacers. The front and rear shock tower has different mounting holes to fine tune the suspension.
All four a-arms can be installed in the front or rear or left or right. All suspension components are made of durable moulded plastic with captured suspension hinge pins-no E-clips. Upper links are fixed so you can’t adjust camber but Team Associated offers a steel and a titanium turnbuckles kit.
Front wheels have a small bump steer effect. Don’t worry, just add one or two small washers under the ball stud and the bump steer will be reduced to zero. See RC18T/How to section for more information.
A C1016 steering servo provides enough torque and speed to keep wheels pointed where you want in any circumstance.
Some racers complained about the little loose in the steering and the softness of the servo saver. Here’s the explanations. The RC18T has been designed with a little loose in the direction to protect the steering linkages and servo from the new comers or bashers tortures. Once you get experience and your driving skills are better, you can easily improve the steering. See the “???Tighter servo saver” section.
The RC18T includes very good electronics. The ESC is a Team Associated XPS 8023 Micro ESC with forward and reverse/brake. If you race, you can disable the reverse. A C1016 micro steering servo steers the wheels left/right with ease and a Super 370 motor will make them spin, also with ease. The stock motor is pretty fast with a lot of torque. The RC18T has been clocked at 20MPH, this is the fastest 1/18 truck/buggy out of the box.
A 7.2v 1100 NiMH battery pack and an overnight wall charger are included. The “legendary” XP-2 transmitter with dual rate, trims and end points adjustments is also included. This radio has a little “plastic” look but don’t be fooled by his look. It offers good features and is perfect for any RTR vehicles.
I have absolutely nothing to complaint here, it’s all good stuff.
A long blue aluminum drive shaft, delivery all the motor’s power to the adjustable ball diffs. Team Associated now includes metal sleeve on the diff hubs to prevent the plastic dog bones from popping of. With metal shielded ball bearings everywhere, the drive train spins really freely.
A point that could be improved is the spur gear. Spur gear is exposed to dirt and rocks. If you run in the sand, there are good chances that a little pebble enters between the metal pinion and the plastic spur resulting into a spur gear with few missing teeth. See the “How to” section for more information.
Tires / Body / Wheels
The wheel and tire combo is composed of white dish wheels and mini square pins tire (almost look like mini Bowtie) and they make a perfect combo, they offer good traction on hard packed surface. If you run asphalt they will wear pretty fast, but slicks are good for asphalt too ! The body fits perfectly no additional trimming is required.
A 2mm plastic chassis with radiused edges for more strength. Under the chassis, all screws are countersunk. A top plate is used to protect the driveshafts, to stiffen the chassis and to cover the diff cases. Access to the diffs is really easy, just remove few screws and you have access to the entire drive train.
What I liked
- Fast and tough…
- Really tough
- Great racer
- Really Ready to run
- Excellent manuals
- Easy to convert into a truggy
- A lot of hopups available
What could be improved
- Spur gear exposed to dirt and rocks
- A little bump steer effect
Team Associated are well known for their products quality and the RC18T is no exception. The 18T can be used for racing, bashing or just to share few magic moments with your kids. Out of the box, the RC18T is an excellent truck. If you can’t keep any of your RC stock, Team Associated offers a wide range of aftermarket parts like a complete aluminum kit, Reedy motors and ESC.
The RC18 truck series makes RC easy for everyone who’d like to get into the hobby. It’s fast, tough affordable and all you need is included in the box. Any of the RC18 is a perfect choice for any new comer or die hard racer. For my next mini race season, the RC18T RTR will be my choice. Come back soon for more information and a long term test result.
For more information, visit Team Associated: www.teamassociated.com