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RCScrapyard Radio Controlled Models
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1/10 Scale Nitro Monster Truck:

Kyosho Field Baja Beetle (Radio Controlled Model Review)


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History + Information (and How To Set-up Tips):


  Originally released by Kyosho in 1997, the 4WD Field Baja Beetle - # 31681 - was re-released in 2001 - # 31161T15 - with the bigger GS15R engine.

  Based on a shaft driven 2mm alloy chassis, with coil spring over oil filled dampers, both versions also had the innovative QRC (Quick Reverse Clutch) - 2 Speed Transmission.

Kyosho Field Baja Beetle
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  To race the Kyosho Field Baja Beetle, it requires time and patience, to tune and adjust for improvements in handling and steering ability and to get the grip you need to stay on course when manoeuvring around tight, slippery corners. A little can be a lot when it comes to changing your cars settings and our easy methodical directions will guide you to the best Set-up to help you win and keep you winning.

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★ Kyosho Field Baja Beetle Chassis ★
Kyosho Field Baja Beetle Chassis


Buying a Used Kyosho Field Baja Beetle
Monster Truck (and What to look for)


   Buying a used Kyosho Field Baja Beetle Nitro Monster Truck, or any used RC Model, has a number of advantages. It is generally cheaper than new, ready built and may come with a variety of expensive hop-ups already installed. Cheap, pre-loved bargains are always becoming available. However, depending on the age of your purchase, it may need a little tender loving care before you can take it out on the back yard.

   The one thing you will always need is an instruction manual. If not supplied with your purchase, they can often be downloaded from the Kyosho website, or purchased separately on eBay. With an instruction manual, any problems with your model Monster Truck you may discover can easily be fixed.

Dampers
   When you receive your used Kyosho Monster Truck, make a general visual inspection of the chassis, front and rear wishbones, suspension shock towers etc, for any broken parts that may need to be replaced. Then, take a screwdriver and box spanner and check each self tapping screw and nut for security, taking care not to over tighten.

   Next, for those Kyosho models with oil filled shock absorbers, remove them from the chassis and dismantle the coil springs. The damper shafts should push in and pull out with a smooth action. If you feel a jolt as you change direction, this means the oil has leaked out and must be topped up. At the same time, change the O-Ring seals to prevent more leakage. Also check the damper shafts for damage. If they are scratched, change them as soon as possible.

   If the body shell of your Kyosho Field Baja Beetle is broken, ripped or damaged in any way, this can be easily repaired with rubber solution glue. Also, for added protection and if available for your Field Baja Beetle model, fit an under guard to stop dirt and gravel entering the chassis.

Titanium Turnbuckles
   Examine the drive shafts for wear and replace as required. If possible, change them for titanium. The steel shafts wear and bend too easily.

   If you intend to race your Field Baja Beetle Monster Truck model at a competitive level, I would also recommend you obtain and fit titanium pivot shafts, turnbuckles, tie rods and steering rods.

   The gearbox of your used Monster Truck should be opened up to check for gear wear and lubrication. A thin coat of grease is often used on internal gears and although this is fine for basic running around on the back yard, if you intend to race your Monster Truck at a higher level, this should be removed and replaced with racing oil (ZX1 or Teflon Oil). Of course, this should be reapplied after each race meeting.

Spur Gears
   Gears are a weakness on all Monster Truck RC models. Head on collisions can easily damage the gear teeth on nylon and plastic spur gears. Heavy impacts can also loosen the nuts or self tapping screws that hold the Nitro Engine in Position, allowing the pinion gear to pull out of mesh slightly and rip the tops off the teeth on your spur gear. To minimise this possibility, fit bolts with locking nuts to the Nitro Engine mount and remember to check them for security after every two or three runs.

   Ball joints always cause problems. For top level Nitro Monster Truck racing, the plastic ball connectors should be checked and if deemed necessary changed after every meeting. A simple thing like a loose fitting connector popping off could easily end your race, so better safe than sorry.

Servo Gears
   The Field Baja Beetle steering servo is also prone to damage. In high speed crash situations, the fragile gear teeth of the servo can be broken off, rendering your expensive servo useless, so be sure to obtain a good quality "Servo Saver". Check out my Servo Information article.

   If body roll on your Kyosho Field Baja Beetle is a problem, handling can be improved with the use of stabilizers, anti roll or sway bars, stiffer tuning springs and, or, thicker silicone oil in the dampers.

Ball Bearings
   If your used Kyosho Monster Truck comes with plastic and sintered brass bushings (ring type bearings), check the shafts that run in them for wear. Dust and grit can get into these bearings and abrade the shafts. Therefore, you should replace them all with shielded ball bearings. If the model has been run with ring type bearings, you may have to change all the axles and driveshafts. For more information, take a look at my article, How to get the best from your Bearings.

   Finally, good luck with your Field Baja Beetle model and good racing.




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Or, check out our RC Model Car Setup Guide


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Manufacturers and Brands Catalogued and Listed by RC-Scrapyard.


   At present, the RC Model Manufacturers, Brands and Distributors covered by us are: ABC Hobby, Academy, Acme Racing, Agama Racing, Amewi, Ansmann Racing, ARRMA, Team Associated, Atomic RC, Axial, AYK, Bolink, BSD Racing, Capricorn, Carisma, Carson, Caster Racing, Cen, Corally, Custom Works, Durango, Duratrax, ECX - Electrix, Exceed RC, FG Modellsport, FS-Racing, FTX, Fujimi, Gmade, GS-Racing, Harm, HBX, Helion, Heng Long, Himoto Racing, Hirobo, Hitari, Hobao, Hong-Nor, Hot Bodies, HPI, HSP, Intech, Integy, Jamara, JQ Products, Kawada, Kyosho, Losi, LRP, Maisto, Mardave, Marui, Maverick, MCD Racing, Megatech, Mugen, New Bright, Nichimo, Nikko, Nkok, Ofna, Pro-Pulse, Protech, PTI, RC4WD, Redcat Racing, RJ-Speed, Robitronic, Schumacher, Seben, Serpent, Smartech, Sportwerks, Step-Up, Tamiya, Team-C Racing, Team Magic, Thunder Tiger, Tomy, Top Racing, Traxxas, Trinity, Tyco, Vaterra RC, Venom, VRX Racing, WLToys, X-Factory, Xmods, Xpress, Xray, XTM, Yankee RC, Yokomo, ZD Racing and Zipzaps.

   This is an ongoing project, with new and "lost in time" RC Model Brands being added as they are found and although most of those listed above have been covered in relative detail, some are still being researched and will be completed in the near future.


















Hints and Tips

Tires for Off-Road RC Models


   If you only ever intend to race your Buggy, Truggy or Truck at your local track each week end, you will soon learn the best tire - insert combination for your particular model on that specific track surface type. But if you ever visit other tracks in your area, or move on to the national or international race meetings, at other tracks throughout the country, you will soon discover that your trusty setup will not work as well and you will be forced to invest in many more sets of wheels and tires.

   The choice of Off-Road tires available is mind boggling and the combinations of Mini-Pin, Micro-Pin, Block, Stud and Ribbed Tires, with all the various types of foam inserts available is a mine field, even for the more experienced.

   Local knowledge is always the place to start and the second visit made to any particular track is always better than the first, provided you keep good records of your tires, inserts and general set-up for each race.

Tires and Inserts for Jumps


   Most tracks for off-road RC models - indoor or outdoor, have at least one jump for you to negotiate and on a high number of tracks, it is how you land from that jump that will determine where you finish in the race.

   Setting the droop and adjusting the damper oil or coil spring tensions will go a long way to ensuring you land from the jump on all four wheels and keep control of your car as you exit the jump, but the correct choice of tire insert can also have an effect on how much grip you have when you land and accelerate to the next corner.

   As a rule of thumb, the higher the jump, the harder the foam insert needs to be. If the jump is long and not too high, a softer foam insert may give improved grip.

   Once you have determined the best tire combination and before you glue the tires to the rims, trial and error with different inserts on your practice laps before racing, can reap huge benefits.

For More Setup Information check out my Hints and Tips page.







Hints and Tips

Ackerman

   So What is Ackerman?

   If you place your car on a table facing away from you and turn the steering to full lock to the left, you will notice the angle the left hand wheel has turned is more than that of the right hand wheel. That is the Ackerman effect.

   Moving your car to the edge of the table, with the wheels still on full lock, push it round a complete circle. What you will notice, is the diameter of the circle made by the inside wheel, is smaller than that of the outside wheel. This is a good thing.

   Consider what would happen if both wheels turned to the same angle. In this example, the inside wheel would have a tendency to drag sideways, making the car unstable and difficult to drive.

   The standard kit setting on the majority of RC Model cars, are generally pretty good for beginners, but when your experience increases, you will find out just what tuning your Ackerman can do for your driving style and why it can be helpful when setting up your car for any particular track.

   Some of the cheaper RC Models have fixed position steering links. Others have various methods to change Ackerman settings, like changing shims under the ball connector etc. These days, most modern cars allow you to adjust your Ackerman by lengthening or shortening the links by simply removing two screws and repositioning the links in relation to the front suspension arms.

   Lengthening the links, by adjusting the pivot points of the steering arms back towards the centre line of the rear axle, will give you Less Ackerman, providing you with more aggressive steering as you enter a corner. Useful on slippery tracks, to counter when the car tends to slide to the outside of the corner as you first turn into it.

   Shortening the links, by adjusting the pivot points of the steering arms more forward of the centre line of the rear axle, will give you More Ackerman, making cornering less aggressive, more predictable and improving car stability, better for high grip tracks, with smooth sweeping corners.

   How to implement these adjustments varies from model to model so you will have to refer to your manual for full instructions.

For More Setup Information check out my Hints and Tips page.










On/Off Road
RC Models:

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