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Tamiya Nissan 350Z Race-Car Complete Kit - # 57050 (Radio Controlled Model Review)

1/10 Scale Electric Touring Car - TT-01 Chassis:

  Released by Tamiya circa 2004, the 4WD Nissan 350Z Race-Car Complete Kit (#57050) is the Nissan 350Z Race-Car (#58304) with a 540 motor, speed controller, battery, charger and radio system included. The model is of the Nissan 350Z Racing Concept Car that was unveiled at the same time as the market version of the 350Z. This model had been previously introduced as model number # 57034, with different included equipment.

Tamiya Nissan 350Z Race-Car Complete Kit - TT-01 # 57034
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  The TT-01 is shaft driven, on a molded plastic chassis, with gear type differentials, coil spring over friction dampers, dogbone drive-shafts and bushings.

  The kit comes with plastic bush type bearings, that after a short while, when dust and grit get into them, actually wear into the metal drive shafts - our recommendation is that these should be replaced by steel shielded ball bearings ASAP.

  To get the best from the Tamiya TT-01 Chassis, it needs to be fine tuned, for smooth acceleration under control and handle corners at high speed, without slipping off the track. Small adjustments can make a Big difference and our simple to understand, step by step procedure, will guide you to the best Set-up for your driving style.


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

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Tamiya Nissan 350Z Race-Car Complete Kit - TT-01 Chassis
Tamiya Nissan 350Z Race-Car Complete Kit Chassis

Tamiya Nissan 350Z Race-Car Complete Kit - TT-01 Chassis
Tamiya Nissan 350Z Race-Car Complete Kit Chassis


Buying a Used Tamiya Nissan 350Z
Touring Car (and What to look for)


   Buying a used Tamiya Nissan 350Z 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 Nissan 350Z 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 Nissan 350Z 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 Nissan 350Z 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 Nissan 350Z 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 Nissan 350Z 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 Nissan 350Z model and good racing.


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Hints and Tips


Rechargeable Batteries
for RC Models


   At the time this article was written, there are four types of Rechargeable Batteries that are commonly in use for Radio Controlled Models.
Ni-Cad (Nickel Cadmium) Batteries have been around the longest. My first stick battery, purchased way back in 1987 was rated at 1200Mah (Mili Amp Hours) and with a silver can 27 Turn motor my Tamiya Boomerang would run around in the back yard for a good seven minutes before slowly coming to a stop. Ni-Cad development continued until around 1998 to a maximum rating of around 2000Mah and matchers pack builders and battery technicians were able to put together six cell packs with voltages approaching 7.4 Volts, to give those that could afford them, an edge over the rest.

   Ni-Mh (Nickel Metal Hydride) Batteries came along in the late 1990s and by the year 2000 were available at ratings up to 3000Mah. Again, matchers and pack builders worked hard to provide the ardent racer with packs to provide that little bit of extra power and ESC manufacturers also chipped in with improved controllers to take full advantage of this new technology.
   Now the problem wasn't gearing the car to get to the end of the race using the available battery power, but to find the brushed motor that could handle gear setting that provided the speed and acceleration without the motor overheating and wearing the commutator too much so it needed a skim after every 2 runs. My favourite at that time was the 9 Double.

   More recently, Li-Po (Lithium-Polymer) Batteries have appeared on the scene, providing are a huge step forward in performance when compared with Ni-Cad and Ni-Mh batteries. However, Li-Po Batteries are much more expensive than previous battery types, have a shorter effective life of between 200 and 400 charge cycles, compared to well over 1000 charge cycles for Ni-Cad and Ni-Mh and a high degree of care has to be taken when charging Li-Po batteries. They have been known to burst into flames or even explode, for this reason I do not recommend Li-Po batteries for RC beginners.
   Another problem with Li-Po packs is they are physically bigger in size, so for those with older "Vintage" models, they may not fit into the provided space for the battery on the chassis.

   The latest development in battery technology for RC are Li-Ion. Originally produced for Laptops, Ipods, Tablets and the like, they are now available for RC models. Much like Li-Po for price and charge cycle life, the power and capacity is a moderate improvement, but for me, at the moment, not worth the expense.

   One final word of warning. NEVER leave your charging Li-Po or Li-Ion battery unattended when being charged and NEVER above the recommended charge rate. After use, store each battery with about 60% charge remaining and always in a fireproof bag.


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







Hints and Tips

Camber

   Camber is described as the angle of the wheel as you look at it directly from the front or rear of your car and if set correctly will improve your cars cornering ability considerably, by providing increased traction. This simple to make adjustment is considered by many to be one of the most effective changes you can make to your car for better handling.

   Positive Camber is when the top of the wheel is angled outwards. Negative Camber has the top of the wheel angled inwards.

   First of all, get yourself a good camber gauge. All adjustments to your cars camber setting should be made with the car in race mode that means the motor, battery etc in position in the chassis.

   To check the angle of an On Road car, it must have the ride height already set to around 5mm. Place the car on a perfectly flat surface, position your camber gauge against the side of the wheel you are checking and take the camber angle, normally this is between -1 and -3 degrees negative. Next, put a small 1mm thick piece of card under that corner of the car and push the corner down until it touches the card. In this position, check the angle again. It should be between 0 and -0.5 degrees negative camber. If not, pick up the car and put it back down on the flat surface, check and make adjustments, using the turnbuckle, that you consider are needed to achieve your goal. Keep checking and adjusting and repeat for all four corners. What you are aiming for is an angle that will provide your car with the maximum amount of rubber on the track on high speed corners.

   Off Road cars can be adjusted in a similar manner to that described previously, with the ride height set at around 20mm, but in place of the card, use a small booklet or something around 5mm thick. The optimal camber setting is a little more difficult to find for off road cars and depends generally of the track surface you are racing on. Slippery tracks generally require less camber because of reduced suspension movement when cornering, whereas high grip tracks require more camber to compensate for inertial induced body-roll. Depending on the particular model, this setting can be anything between -1 and -5 degrees Ö sometimes more. Check your model manual for details.

   Be aware that for all model types, too much negative camber can reduce straight line traction, but with a good setting for any particular track, the advantage it gives, that of vastly improved cornering stability, far outweigh any negative effects.

   For beginners, this setting is by far the easiest to experiment with. Just take the car out on the back yard and with a few simple turns of a turnbuckle you will soon learn just what difference a small change in your cars setup can do to change its handling ability. Good luck and good racing.

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








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