RCScrapyard ► Iconic Vintage Radio Controlled (RC) Model Car Archive ► Losi Mini Desert Buggy.
RCScrapyard Radio Controlled Models
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1/18 Scale Electric Buggy:

Losi Mini Desert Buggy - LOSB0204 (Radio Controlled Model Review)


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History, Info (and How To Set-up Tips) for the Losi Mini Desert Buggy:


  Released by Losi in 2009, the 2WD Mini Desert Buggy RTR - B-0204 - has a molded plastic chassis, with a roll cage, gear type differential, coil spring over oil filled dampers, dogbone drive-shafts, bushings, ring type bearings, with ball bearings for the transmission and comes with a 280 electric motor, ESC and Spektrum 2.4Ghz radio system.

Losi Mini Desert Buggy - 1:18 Electric RC Buggy
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  To race the Losi Mini Desert Buggy, it requires a high level of tuning for improved stability when cornering, to keep it on the track and give you more grip under acceleration. Even the smallest change in your cars settings can make a Big difference. Our simple to follow instruction chart will show how to attain the best Set-up for your personal requirements.

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★ Losi Mini Desert Buggy Chassis ★
Losi Mini Desert Buggy Chassis

★ Losi Mini Desert Buggy Chassis ★
Losi Mini Desert Buggy Chassis


Buying a Used Losi Mini Desert Buggy (and What to look for)


   Buying a used Losi Mini Desert Electric Buggy, 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 Losi website, or purchased separately on eBay. With an instruction manual, any problems with your model Buggy you may discover can easily be fixed.

Dampers
   When you receive your used Losi Buggy, 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 Losi 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 Losi Mini Desert 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 Mini Desert 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 Mini Desert Buggy 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 Buggy 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 Buggy 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 Buggy 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 Electric Motor 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 Electric Motor mount and remember to check them for security after every two or three runs.

   Ball joints always cause problems. For top level Electric Buggy 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 Mini Desert 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 Losi Mini Desert 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 Losi Buggy 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 Mini Desert 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

Decals

   After spending lots of time and effort to paint your bodyshell, you come to the point where you make it look good by putting on all those flashy decals, but before you rush in with the scissors and start cutting, there are a few things you should do first.

   Good preparation is key to a perfect job, so before you do anything with your decals, you must first of all wash your hands and then make sure the bodyshell is clean and no oil or grime from your previously grubby fingers remains on the Polycarbonate Lexan surface. Methylated spirits is the thing to use, or failing that, use one of those wipes you use for your computer monitor screen. As the body shell dries, you can carefully cut out the decals from the sheet. Do the big ones first and leave the smallest ones for last.

   Now you can prepare to the decals for positioning. Carefully remove the backing paper from the decal with your thumb nail and then put it back on again, but slightly out of line. Place the decal in the position you want it on the bodyshell and when you are satisfied, press down the sticky corner onto the bodyshell and peel off the backing paper, following it along with your fingers to avoid any bubbles. Repeat the process until all your decals are in place.

   Any bubbles or misfitting areas can be corrected by using a sharp modelling knife to carefully pierce the bubbles, or score the poorly fitting area and complete the process with your finger nail.

   Some misalignments can often be fixed using a hair dryer on the offending decal to soften the glue enough to allow you to reposition it, but be careful; Lexan can react like heat-shrink and may wrinkle if you use too much heat.

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







Hints and Tips

Your First Race Meeting

   When you finally find a racing club near to where you live, that initial experience of stepping up onto the rostrum and looking down over the track can be very daunting. But soon, as the race starts, adrenaline will kick in and away you go. For the next five minutes, your focus is on nothing but getting your car around each corner, avoiding all the other cars on the track and just getting to the end of the race.

   Maybe your batteries dumped or you crashed and the car was damaged, perhaps you didn't actually come last, whatever happened, it doesn't really matter you are well and truly hooked.

   When the race is over, don't be afraid to ask the more experienced racers questions about setup, driving tips etc. They have all been where you are now and will be more than willing to help you. Show them your car, get some tips on tires, gearing and general set-up for the club track.

   Then, when you get back home, go through all your races in your mind. Try to identify the things you did wrong and figure out how to avoid those mistakes next time. Think about what all the more experienced racers told you and change your settings as they advised.

   Put down a few buckets or cones in the back yard to practice driving round, something that if you hit it won't damage your car. Get someone to time you for say ten laps and each day after school, try to beat that time. The adage, "Practice makes perfect" holds true in many things, not least the sport of RC racing and as your confidence increases, your racing skills improve and the trophies begin to line up on your bedroom shelf, you will one day yourself be the guy all the newbie's look to for advice and you will remember that day, you nervously stepped up onto that platform for the first time, looked down across the track and how your whole life changed in that fleeting moment.

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










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