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1/10 Scale Electric Truck/Truggy:

Redcat Racing Vortex EPX Pro (Radio Controlled Model Review)


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History, Info (and How To Set-up Tips) for the Vortex EPX Pro:


  Introduced by Redcat Racing circa 2009, the 4WD Vortex EPX Pro Desert Truck, came RTR with a 3300KV brushless motor, ESC, radio system, LiPo battery and charger.

  The model is shaft driven, on a molded plastic chassis, with alloy top deck, gear type differentials, coil spring over oil filled dampers, dogbone drive-shafts, bushings and ball bearings.

Redcat Racing Vortex-EPX-Pro
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  To race the Redcat Vortex EPX Pro, it calls for fine tuning to attain better steering response and improve grip when cornering so you don't slide off the side of the track. Minute changes can make huge advancements. Our easy to understand list will show you how and lead you to the optimum Set-up to put you in front of the rest on the track.

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★ Redcat Racing Vortex EPX Pro Chassis ★
Redcat Racing Vortex EPX Pro Chassis

★ Redcat Racing Vortex EPX Pro Chassis ★
Redcat Racing Vortex EPX Pro Chassis


Buying a Used Redcat Vortex EPX Truck (and What to look for)


   Buying a used Redcat Vortex EPX Electric 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 Redcat website, or purchased separately on eBay. With an instruction manual, any problems with your model Truck you may discover can easily be fixed.

Dampers
   When you receive your used Redcat 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 Redcat 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 Redcat Vortex EPX 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 Vortex EPX 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 Vortex EPX 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 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 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 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 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 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 Vortex EPX 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 Redcat Vortex EPX 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 Redcat 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 Vortex EPX 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

Dampers

   Dampers, Shock Absorbers, Shocks call them what you will, they are one of the least understood, but most important tools you have for adjusting the handling characteristics of your RC model.

   In this article, I will endeavour to explain just what you can achieve by making simple tweaks to your shocks and how these tweaks can keep you ahead of your opposition on the track.

   In dictionary terms "Damper" is described as "A mechanical device to absorb the energy of sudden impulses." In plain language, they stop your car from bouncing all over the track.


So how do Dampers work?

   Basically what you have is a small amount of silicone oil contained in a sealed cylinder. Through the centre of that cylinder is a metal rod and on the end of that rod, a piston with a number of small holes in it. Pulling, or pushing the rod in and out of the cylinder, your will notice a certain amount of resistance as the oil is forced through the holes in the piston. To manipulate that resistance you have two options. You could use thicker or thinner oil, or change the size of the holes in the piston. So if you have thicker oil, or smaller holes, you have more resistance. Less viscous oil or larger holes, less resistance. This simple physical relationship, coupled with a good set of tuning springs, is all you need to set-up your car to beat the rest.

   Out on the race track, the main thing you want to avoid is your car bouncing around all over the place, sliding, or even rolling over when you negotiate a tight corner. To prevent this you need to make changes, but before you make those changes you need to consider what your problem is for that particular track. How your model reacts when cornering does it Under-steer? (Slide towards the outside of the corner) or Over-steer? (Turns towards the inside of the corner). Does it react differently when you exit the corner to how it did when you entered it?

   Once you have decided what your problem is, go to our "Set-Up" page linked below and follow the step by step instructions. But remember to only make ONE change at a time. If the first suggestion isn't enough to cure the problem, add the second and so on, until you find that perfect setting. Good luck and good racing.

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







Hints and Tips

Shock Mount Settings

   The combinations of Shock settings available on the majority of on and off road cars are far too many for this article to cover, so I will endeavour to explain some of the basics, that should give you some idea what these changes might achieve. Some of the settings suggested may not be available on all RC model cars.

   If you look at the lower wishbones of you model, you may see a number of holes alongside where the ball studs for the dampers are positioned. If you were to remove those studs on the rear wishbone and reposition them in the hole further out from the center of the car, the first thing you will notice is the ride height has dropped, this can be corrected by adding C spacers above the springs. The second thing you will notice is the shocks are more sluggish, this can be compensated by using thinner oil. If this adjustment is made on an off-road car, it can be advantageous for landing after big jumps, providing improved stability due to the increased hydraulic pack in the shocks (as described in my previous article). This setting can also improve the way cars handle small bumps and dips in the track, due to the softer static damping.

   Changing the mounting hole positions used by the dampers, on the wishbone or on the shock tower, will always change the angle the dampers lay. This angle is what changes the characteristics of the shocks in that they will react to different track types and conditions. The above example is just food for thought, for those looking to improve their cars handling in relation to any other settings, such as caster, camber, toe-in etc, they may have previously made on their car. The only way to really get to grips with this subject is through trial and error.

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










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