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Tamiya XB The Hornet - # 57741 (Radio Controlled Model Review)

1/10 Scale Electric Buggy - GH Chassis

  Released by Tamiya in May 2005, the XB The Hornet (#57741) is No.41 in the RTR Pre-Assembled Expert Built Series, based on the "Grasshopper" Chassis. The original Tamiya The Hornet kit (#58045) was introduced in October 1984.

  A pre-painted lexan bodyshell, a 540 motor and radio system are included, but may require a battery, charger and speed controller to complete (specifications differ from country to country).

Tamiya XB The Hornet - # 57741
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  The model is based on a molded plastic chassis, with a gear type differential, front undamped coil spring suspension, with rear coil spring over friction dampers and bushings.

  Like the vast majority of Tamiya models, the XB The Hornet comes with plastic and sintered brass bush type bearings, that after a short while, when dust and grit get into them, actually wear into the metal drive shafts that spin in them - our recommendation is that these should be discarded and replaced by a full set of steel shielded ball bearings ASAP.

  To get the best from the Tamiya XB The Hornet, it needs to be fine tuned to handle jumps under control and has enough grip to hug the 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: 3.53.5 Stars out of 5 Reviewed by: RCScrapyard     Manual.

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Tamiya XB The Hornet
Tamiya XB The Hornet

Tamiya XB The Hornet - Chassis
Tamiya XB The Hornet Chassis


Buying a Used Tamiya The Hornet
Buggy (and What to look for)


   Buying a used Tamiya The Hornet 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 Tamiya 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 Tamiya 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 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 The Hornet 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 The Hornet 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 The Hornet Buggy 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 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 The Hornet 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 The Hornet 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 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 The Hornet model and good racing.


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Hints and Tips


Bearings

   If you are serious about your racing, looking after your bearings is essential if you are to remain competitive.
   My own experience is in both Off and On Road, National and International Car racing, but most of these tips could be useful to all forms of RC.

   Shields: The main problem with Ball Bearing Shields is they create friction and obviously the more you can reduce friction, the more efficient your bearings will be, so here's a tip that does just that.
   Wheel Bearings always come in pairs, positioned side by side. If you think about it, the two inside shields on each bearing are not required, so ... you can remove them using a small jewelers screwdriver ... simple. And in one fell swoop you have halved your wheel bearing friction.

   Cleaning: All Bearings need to be cleaned from time to time. Depending on how focused and competitive you are, this can be as often as after each race meeting, or just once or twice a year ... For Club Meetings once or twice a year might be all you need if you are easily beating your competition, but for the BIG meets you need that extra 5% or 10% just to be up with the rest.
What you need is a small glass jar, a jewelers screwdriver, an old tooth brush and some Isopropanol.
Remove the shields, then drop the bearings in the jar, add some Isopropanol, pop on the lid and shake well. Empty them out, give them a good brushing and make sure they spin free then repeat the process. Clean the shields separately. Once you are satisfied, lay them on a piece of kitchen roll and allow to dry.

   Lubrication: The arguments I have had about what lubrication to use you wouldn't believe. Some of the top racers of my day swore they didn't use any at all, but cleaned out the original lubrication and ran them dry ... they also admitted to fitting a new set after each meeting ... well, they were getting them for free.
My tip is, yes even with a new set of bearings, clean out the original lubrication (as described above) and with one shield in place use the thinnest oil you can find ... I recommend ZX1 (Zed Ex One) or sewing machine oil.

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







Hints and Tips

Tires for Off-Road RC Models


   If you only ever intend to race your Buggy, Truggy or Truck at your local track each week end, you will soon learn the best tire - insert combination for your particular model on that specific track surface type. But if you ever visit other tracks in your area, or move on to the national or international race meetings, at other tracks throughout the country, you will soon discover that your trusty setup will not work as well and you will be forced to invest in many more sets of wheels and tires.

   The choice of Off-Road tires available is mind boggling and the combinations of Mini-Pin, Micro-Pin, Block, Stud and Ribbed Tires, with all the various types of foam inserts available is a mine field, even for the more experienced.

   Local knowledge is always the place to start and the second visit made to any particular track is always better than the first, provided you keep good records of your tires, inserts and general set-up for each race.

Tires and Inserts for Jumps


   Most tracks for off-road RC models - indoor or outdoor, have at least one jump for you to negotiate and on a high number of tracks, it is how you land from that jump that will determine where you finish in the race.

   Setting the droop and adjusting the damper oil or coil spring tensions will go a long way to ensuring you land from the jump on all four wheels and keep control of your car as you exit the jump, but the correct choice of tire insert can also have an effect on how much grip you have when you land and accelerate to the next corner.

   As a rule of thumb, the higher the jump, the harder the foam insert needs to be. If the jump is long and not too high, a softer foam insert may give improved grip.

   Once you have determined the best tire combination and before you glue the tires to the rims, trial and error with different inserts on your practice laps before racing, can reap huge benefits.

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








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