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Tamiya Ferrari 643 - #84194 (Radio Controlled Model Review)

1/10 Scale Electric Formula One - F104W Chassis:

  Released by Tamiya on March 26, 2011, the Ferrari 643 kit (#84194) is No.694 in the Limited Sale Series, based on the F104W Chassis. The model is of the Ferrari 643 that was driven by both Alain Prost and Jean Alesi in the 1991 season of the F1 World Championships.

  A lexan bodyshell and 540 motor are included, but a radio system, battery, charger and speed controller are required to complete.

Tamiya Ferrari 643 - F104W #84194
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  Based on the F104 Chassis, the F104W (W for Wide) has the same double deck design features as the F104 but with the front wishbones of the F103 Chassis.

  The basic F104 is 180mm wide and the F104W is 205mm wide, making it 25mm wider. This is achieved on the rear by simply placing the hub mount deeper inside the rear wheels and on the front by utilising the F103 configuration. Ball bearings were included for rear axle, with bushings for the front.

  The model comes with Plastic bush type bearings, that after a short while, when dust and grit get into them, can actually wear into the metal drive shafts that spin in them - our recommendation is that these should be replaced by a full set of steel shielded ball bearings ASAP.


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

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Tamiya Ferrari 643 - F104W Chassis
Tamiya F104W Chassis

Tamiya Ferrari 643 - F104W Chassis
Tamiya F104W Chassis


General Information and Advice

   For those starting in Radio Controlled Racing, here are a few Hints and Tips: Firstly, buy a Kit not an RTR. That way, if something breaks you will have some idea how to fix it.

   Radio Controlled Model Cars are very fragile and easily broken. The main parts to protect are the Front Wishbones, Suspension Shock Towers, Dampers, Hub Carriers, Kingpins, Uprights and Toe in Blocks, so make sure you have a good strong front bumper and Lexan or Hard Plastic Body Shell and if available for your model, a protective under tray, to prevent grit and dust getting into any moving parts.

   The Steering Servo is also a weakness in high speed crash situations, so get yourself some good strong Servo Mount and Servo Saver. Also I would recommend Titanium Shafts, Turnbuckles, Tie Rods and pivot/steering shafts and if available for your model, lightweight Titanium Drive shafts, dog bones and CVD (Constant Velocity Drives). The standard steel types are far too easily bent.

   Gearing is another problem area on RC model cars. Head on collisions can easily break off gear teeth on Nylon/Plastic Spur Gears and even Bevel Gears inside the Gearbox. Heavy impacts can also loosen nuts and self taping screws that hold the Motor in Position, allowing the Pinion Gear to pull out of mesh slightly and rip the tops of the teeth on your Spur Gear. To avoid this to some degree, fit locking nuts and a new motor mount from time to time, so the self taping screws that hold the motor in position have less chance to come loose.

   Ball joints always cause problems. For top level Radio Controlled model 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 breaking free could easily end your race, so better safe than sorry.

   Many New car kits come with Nylon and Sintered Brass Ring type bearings. My advice is to discard these before initial installation and buy a good Hop-up set of Shielded Steel Ball Bearings. Or if you are serious about your racing, Teflon or Ceramic Bearings.

   One final piece of advice about the Setup of your Car. Keep the Centre of Gravity as low as possible. Ride Height is all important. For On Road Drift/Touring cars the Ride Height should be no more than 5mm, for Buggys, Trucks, Truggys and Monster Trucks, as low as possible depending on the track conditions. If Body Roll is a problem, handling can be improved with the use of Stabilizers, Anti roll or Sway Bars, stiffer Tuning Springs and, or thicker Silicon Oil in the Dampers. Also find somewhere to mount the Transponder as low in the Chassis as possible.

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Or, check out our RC Model Car Setup Guide













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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

Tires for RC Models

Sponge (Foam) Tires:

   Sponge Tires can be purchased either pre mounted, glued and trued on the rims, or separately. Fitting the Tires onto the rims can be messy, so here are a few tips to make it a bit easier.
   If you are fitting new Tires on old rims, make sure the old sponge Tire is completely removed. To do this, I recommend using a wood lathe and apiece of wood, at least 300mm long and more than the width of your wheels, with medium grit emery paper stuck to it ... sand paper will also work, but emery is harder wearing ... This will also be used for truing a wheel. (Described later)

How to Mount and Glue Sponge Tires onto Wheels/Rims.

1/   Mount the Tires on the rims. Make sure they are reasonably tight on the rims, too loose and you might have problems.

2/   I find this to be easier if either in the lathe, or on the car itself. (but be careful with that glue)
  Using your thumb and forefinger, lift up the Tire off the rim, then using a small spatula or a thin piece of rigid wood or plastic dipped in glue (I recommend Evo-Stik, Impact Adhesive) slip it in the gap, making sure both the Tire and the rim are smeared. Then lower the Tire back onto the rim and press it down. Turn the Tire approximately 60 degrees and repeat.

3/   Depending on the width of the Tire you may need to repeat the process on the inside also.


How to True Sponge Tires.

   Truing Sponge Tires is essential if you are serious about racing competitively. To do this you will need the piece of wood, as described earlier and a good pair of vernier or digital calipers.
   Sponge Tires will always wear unevenly, weather you race on Carpet or Tarmac. The outside wheels will always end a race smaller than the ones on the inside, so after each race I recommend swapping them over (unless you are fortunate to have a new set for each race) and dont forget to adjust the steering trim on your transmitter before the next race.

1/   Before starting, check each mounted Tire for diameter and order them smallest to largest. Start with the smallest and mount it in the lathe.

2/   Make sure you are wearing safety glasses before you start this procedure: Lay the sanding wood under the Tire so that it can be pivoted up from behind onto the Tire. Start the lathe spinning, so that as you stand infront of the Tire, it is rotating downwards. Slowly lift the sanding wood and try to hold it ridged as it comes up against the Tire. There will be a high point on the Tire that if you hold the bat rigid enough will eventually wear down until the Tire appears completely concentric. at this point stop the lathe and measure the diameter on the inside and outside of the width. If needs be, repeat the process until satisfied.
Repeat for each Tire, matching them in pairs for diameter.
If considered necessary also trim the sides.


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








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