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Tamiya BMW M Roadster - #58240 (Radio Controlled Model Review)

1/10 Scale Electric M-Chassis Model Car - M-04L Chassis:

  Released by Tamiya on July 13, 1999, this self assembly Radio Controlled Model of the BMW "M" Roadster sports car is based on the M04L Chassis.

Tamiya BMW M-Roadster - #58240 M-04L
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  The first rear mounted motor, rear wheel drive M-Chassis model, designated the M02, was released in 1995, for the Fiat Abarth 1000 TCR Berlina Corse (#58158). Four years later the design was updated with the introduction of the M04. No standard short 210mm wheelbase M04 version was ever produced and was only released in the Medium (M04M) 225mm and Long (M04L) 239mm wheelbase formats.

  The new design discards the horizontally mounted friction mono shocks that were used on the M02, replacing them with a more stable four coil over friction shock absorber configuration. Changing these for oil filled versions can improve the cars handling considerably.

  Like the majority of the radio controlled models produced by Tamiya around 80s and 90s the car disappointingly comes with the plastic/nylon and sintered brass bush type bearings. If installed, the grease on these bearings collect dust and grit that actually abrades the shafts spinning in them, so if you do fit ball bearings at a later time they are sloppy on the shafts not good To avoid this problem, a full set of steel ball bearings should be installed on first build.


      Rating: 44 Stars out of 5 Reviewed by: RCScrapyard     Manual.

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Tamiya BMW M Roadster #58240 M-04L - Chassis
Tamiya BMW M Roadster #58240 M-04L Chassis
Tamiya BMW M Roadster #58240 M-04L
Tamiya BMW M Roadster #58240 M-04L Body Shell

Buying a Used Tamiya BMW M Roadster
Touring Car (and What to look for)


   Buying a used Tamiya BMW M Roadster Electric Touring Car, 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 Tamiya website, or purchased separately on eBay. With an instruction manual, any problems with your model Touring Car you may discover can easily be fixed.

Dampers
   When you receive your used Tamiya Touring Car, 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 Tamiya 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 Tamiya BMW M Roadster 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 BMW M Roadster 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 BMW M Roadster Touring Car model at a competitive level, I would also recommend you obtain and fit titanium pivot shafts, turnbuckles, tie rods and steering rods.

   On Belt driven models, the Drive Belts need checking at regular intervals for wear, tension and damage. If deemed necessary, adjust the tensioning pulley until the belt can be depressed in the centre by no more than around 5mm. If the belt was slack, also examine the drive pulleys for wear. The teeth should provide a well seated fit for the belt teeth and not be rounded on the corners. If the belt teeth do not fit snugly, change the pulleys as soon as possible. For top level racing it may be prudent to replace all belts and pulleys after each race meeting.

   For Gear driven models, the gearbox of your used Touring Car 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 Touring Car 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 Touring Car 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 Touring Car 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 BMW M Roadster 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 Tamiya BMW M Roadster 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 Tamiya Touring Car 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 BMW M Roadster model and good racing.




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Tamiya BMW-M-Roadster


Hints and Tips

Soldering Battery Packs

   Nicad and Nimh batteries sometimes come as six separate matched 1.2 volt cells. These of course have to be soldered to each other in series to produce either a side by side stick pack, or a two times three cell saddle pack.

   Special copper, or silver plated straps must be used to make up these packs and each strap must be prepared before attempting to solder it to the battery cell, by placing a blob of solder at each end of all the straps needed.

   A jig to hold the cells vertical and side by side is advisable. Using electrical solder, with a flux core (flux aids the flow and adhesion of the solder) heat your soldering iron to as hot as it will go. Then with the stick of solder touching on the end of the cell, touch it with the iron. What you want it to spread evenly on the central part of the pole of the cell. Count to 3 seconds. If it doesn't melt the solder in that time, your iron is not hot enough. Battery cells are notoriously very fragile and susceptible to the very high temperatures soldering requires. Anything longer than four or five seconds direct contact with the iron can cause damage to the crystal structure in the cell, so be wary.

   When you have solder on each end of each cell, line them up in the jig, positive to negative and dab a spot of flux on the soldered cells, then position your straps, with the solder coated side faced down, touching the solder on the end of the cell. Now place your hot iron on the strap. Heat will transfer through the strap and melt the solder on the two faces. Again, count to 3 and you should feel the strap drop slightly as the solder fuses with the solder on the cell. Repeat this for each cell on both sides to produce your desired configuration. Finally solder your two wires, previously prepared with connectors, to the pack. Do not solder wires with bare ends to your pack. If these wires were to touch and short out, you could effectively kill your expensive battery pack I use Red for positive and Black for negative, but so long as you know which is which electrical equipment does not like the battery to be connected the wrong way.

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



Hints and Tips

Tires for RC Models

Rubber Tires:

   Rubber Tires ALWAYS should have either soft sponge or rubber inserts. They will not function as they should without them. And if you are totally serious about your racing they should be glued to the rims.

   You should also have at least three different compounds (Soft, Medium and Hard) for varying track temperatures in On Road tarmac racing Touring cars and varying pin sizes for carpet and Off Road racing Buggys and Trucks.


How to Mount Rubber Tires onto Wheels/Rims.

   Before mounting your Tires, I would recommend talking to the more experienced racers at your local club, as to what inserts they use. Even the top level racers rely on a bit of local knowledge on tracks they have never raced before.

1/   Once you have decided what inserts to use, position them inside the Tires ready to go onto the rims.

2/   You will need strong fingers to pull and maneuver the Tires over the rims, so you may need the help of an adult. I would recommend NOT using metal Tire levers or a spoon as they can not only damage the fragile plastic rims but can also put small tears in the rubber, that could cause problems later.
   The technique I recommend, is to first of all hook the Tire on one side of the rim, then using the thumb and forefinger, grip the Tire and pull it upwards and over into position around the middle of the wheel, then over to its final position on the far side so that the beading is seated in the spigot. then position the near side beading in the opposite spigot making sure the sponge (or rubber) insert is not trapped and positioned centrally.

3/   You have the option of either gluing or not gluing your tires in position. If the track you race at is not too grippy you can get away with it, but on high grip tracks there is the possibility the tire might pull away from the rim and ruin your race.
My recommendation is to glue them.
   Superglue is the thing to use. To do this, carefully pull the beading out of its seating, put on a spot of glue, then quickly push it back down. repeat this at least 6 times around each side of the wheel.
Superglue can be dangerous, so this is best done by an adult.

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









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