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  1. #1

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    How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    This might sound really stupid in an RC forum or to all those experienced people out there. But basically I want to learn about remote control cars, airplanes, helicopters and thought learning how to make a remote control car would be a good start. From what I've learned, since im a beginner, making an electric one would be my best choice since its the easiest. So can anyone tell me if there is some sort of guide or what I should read upon? As of now I don't really know anything about circuitry and stuff like that and don't really know where to start.

  2. #2
    sheograth's Avatar
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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    Your best bet would be to buy an entry level electric RC car kit like something from Tamiya. They come with great instructions and you learn all about the various parts of the car while building it. You buy your own radio system, motor, speed controller, and battery separately. Depending on whether you want on or off road, truck, buggy, etc there are lots of choices.
    RCUniverse.com | Wattflyer.com | RCUvideos.com

  3. #3

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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    are you wanting to learn to build from scratch? sheograth i right that is the best way. but if you build your own parts and all post a pic when you get done. ive thought about building one myself totally from scratch. a 1/8th scale buggy.i got the tools to do it but trying to figure what materials to build it from. keep us posted on your progress im very interested in what you are doing. well ifyou look back i bet losi mugen and all was a first time build at one time. who knows you might start something i seen a rock crawler built from scratch it was built real good. it wasent built fancy but it was tough as nails. he built the frame steering and he made his own diferintals . he had great workmanship in it. and it run as good if not better than the factory made ones. he said the hardest part was when he got it all together was getting it ballenced. but he said it was all worth it in the end. hope you do build one and it comes out the way you want. dont give up you can do it

  4. #4

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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    The kits are kind of expensive (for me). They all range above $50. The reason I want to build it from scratch is that I don't care if its really fast or not, has great suspension. I just want to build one that can go forward, backward, and turn left and right. It's basically just for learning what each part does. I've seen lots of people on youtube make great ones from scratch. Obviously mine will be really simple but for the first one I don't really mind. The problem is I don't know what each part does or is. I need some sort of guide explaining that or if someone here could tell me all the parts?
    Thanks

  5. #5
    Lars from Norway's Avatar
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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    There are collected som home build-threads in the large scale section in one thread, maybe you can use some ideas from the builds there and scale them down a bit
    Find a job you love, then you won\'\'t have to work for the rest of your life.

  6. #6

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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    I think I changed my mind. Can anyone recommend me a cheap RC kit that is the LEAST pre built. Budget is an issue. I want to learn about the parts the most I can. Thanks.

  7. #7
    SyCo_VeNoM's Avatar
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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    Extreme machine Monster XX from target. One of the members said they are on clearance for $70 at his target. Their normal retail is $99.
    They are a clone of the Tamiya DF-02.
    The stock electronics(at least the ones I had) are kind of flaky though. Some people report theirs worked fine on the other hand. I got a grand history of getting defective products that usually are broken out of box though.
    That is probably the cheapest New RTR Hobby grade RC you can get that I can think of. It comes with a battery and all (the battery charges good, mine hit 2470mah and its rated 2500)
    Be careful they also sell a 1/16 for $59 that looks almost identical, but alot smaller). The 1/16th has issues with the differentials slipping

    thread on the truck http://www.rcuniverse.com/forum/m_9938129/tm.htm

    The truck also shares roughly 95% of the parts with tamiyas DF-02, there are I think 5 different parts in total(front shock tower, and body mounts are different). So if you need a replacement you can order from tamiya.

    BTW if you are trying to hit insane land speeds or want something that you can upgrade to BL, and get going over 40mph I'd look elsewhere(it can be done, but its costly).
    But if you want a RC that is fine stock can't be beat.
    The thread also has tips on how to make it run smoother.
    With great speed comes greater repair bills.
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  8. #8
    Candre23's Avatar
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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    ORIGINAL: SyCo_VeNoM

    Extreme machine Monster XX from target.
    Good car for the price, but he's looking for a kit.

    If you want something that will actually be fun once it's built, then one of the entry level tamiya kits is your best bet. The lunchbox (monster truck), grasshopper or rising fighter (buggy) or tt01 (touring car) are all in the $80-$100 price range (minus radio and battery) and are all quite fun.

    However, if you really need to go cheap, there is one other option. Tamiya made (makes?) a simplified kit for young children called the Voltec Fighter. It uses a smaller, slower motor and has no suspension, but you can pick up the kits on ebay for $40-50.
    https://sites.google.com/site/chipsrcgarage

  9. #9

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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    Which one's better between the rising fighter and the grasshopper? and can anyone recommend a radio and a battery? Thanks. I can also see that the Hornet is a popular first car...how is that compared to the rising fighter and the grasshopper? Also how do touring cars, monster cars and buggy cars differ from each other besides looks? Which one's fastest?...sorry if I'm sound demanding.

  10. #10
    SyCo_VeNoM's Avatar
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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    ORIGINAL: Candre23

    ORIGINAL: SyCo_VeNoM

    Extreme machine Monster XX from target.
    Good car for the price, but he's looking for a kit.
    That was based off what he said in the post right above mine

    ORIGINAL: ninjaburrito

    I think I changed my mind. Can anyone recommend me a cheap RC kit that is the LEAST pre built. Budget is an issue. I want to learn about the parts the most I can. Thanks.


    But for the price of a Hornet I would say just get a DF-02 kit, they are around the same cost as a hornet new as a kit but you will also have to add in a radio(same as with all tamiya kits). Not saying hornets are not fun RC's (I'm planning on getting one soon), but parts wise the DF-02 has more upgrades. Plasma Edge/Rising Storm/Gravel Hound are all the same RC justa different shell and sticker set.

    http://www3.towerhobbies.com/cgi-bin...edge&search=Go I got one (same cost as a hornet [:@])

    Touring Cars are pavement only
    Monster Trucks are trucks with big tires mostly meant for offroad, usually can go through grass and what not relatively easily, but can be ran onroad too
    Buggies are buggies They do well off road and on-road, Not the greatest in grass but they get the job done.
    With great speed comes greater repair bills.
    Click on My models to see some of what I own. Eventually will add the rest

  11. #11
    Ttam Says Blarg's Avatar
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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    I have seen a couple people custom design chassis and stuff but in the end every single one usually ends up taking existing parts from another vehicle and combining them. You can buy carbon fiber sheets for not to much to start the chassis with.

    Mind you this is very hard to do. Company's spend thousands of dollars developing and testing new cars and its not something that just appears. A lot of hard work goes into designing rc cars. To tell you the truth for a while I wanted to design my own car out of a carbon fiber chassis and put revo style suspension on it. Even did a couple of designs. In the end none of them were accomplished with out a cnc machine. Which I have no access to. Would still love to do it but its not really realistic right now.

    I would like to give a huge shout out to rebelsol! This guy is the business when it comes to making custom stuff. Check out his truggy to!

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  12. #12

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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    I gave up sooner than you did....because I pretty much don't know that much concerning the parts and am too busy to research it. So I ordered a grasshopper. Probably in the future I will be building my own RC.

  13. #13
    cummins driver's Avatar
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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    The tamiya kit will be a great way to learn. If you truley know hardly anything about r/c cars workings but you want to build your own, you will be very happy with the tamiya.

    Eric
    - Savage - MGT Pulling Truck - Losi LST2 - Brushless Blitz - RC10GT (getting a 2.5) - Brushless T4 - Sportwerks Mayhem Pro

  14. #14
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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    Building your own r/c car from scratch is not for people new to r/c, It involves extensice knowledge of all brands, there products, part interchangeability & upgrade options, knowledge of weak points etc etc, aswell as that u need very good skills of making things from metal, plastic, etc & how to make things to the finest tollerances, aswell & the knowledge of what tools would be needed to make the required parts. You will require experance in gearing & motor setups, and the basic knowledge of what electrical components to use.

    I would say after the cost of meterail, tools & electrical components it will end up costing more than a high preformance r/c car.

    It would be like a learner driver wanting to make a real car....

    Ive seen newbys stuff up on making the most basic r/c car kits & wasting big $$$ on pointless upgrades & even motors that wont work at all with there setups.

    If your are keen to learn... its like a apprentiship it takes a good 3-4 years to learn the skills required to maintain & get great preformance from r/c cars. With the way the r/c scene constantly changes its hard to keep up. Some of the guys that have had cars since the late 70's are still struggling with the power of bruchless motors & how thay work. it helps if u are from a mechanical background & are mechanical minded, keep in mind not every one it, it doesent really matter how much u can read its all about applying the lessons learnt from your mistakes & thinking about what potential problems could arise. Some people cant do this, not every one can be a r/c car mechanic, but its worth a try.

    I would steer clear from nitro cars & start with something electric & to keep costs & dammage from newby driving & crashes go for something Brushed to keep the speeds down.

    one of the best styles to start with would be a Buggy... thay can be driven on road, off road, & on grass, where touring cars can mostly be driven on the road, monster trucks are fun but because of there big wheels u can get problems with them rolling over & later on down the track thay can be limiting to the useable motors.

    If i was u i would only go for big brand cars (tamiya, traxxas, HPI, Losi, kyosho & Xray) the replacement parts are very cheap & advoid brands like HSP.

    my pick of the bunch for a newby it the HBX max buggy, its a copy of the tamiya tl01 buggys (baja champ & baja king) thay are easy to handle, 4 wheel drive & are kinda fast out of the box.

    But if u are on a budget i would reccomend building one of these peice by peice, then u dont wast $$$ on stock parts, most parts for these are easly under $20 & some are in the $5-$10 range, thay can be made to any spec & speed.

    I built a one of these peice by peice, & upgraded it to brushless after i was happy with it. only costed me about AUD$200 over 6 months. Its last speed run was 87km/h (venom speed meter) & ive/im redoing the suspension & fitted a tuned gear set im hoping for over 100km/h. it was around 35km/h stock, not to shure just gessing.
    Oh yeah its taken 1 hell of a beating over the time ive had it, & its been good to me





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  15. #15
    SyCo_VeNoM's Avatar
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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?


    ORIGINAL: phmaximus

    Building your own r/c car from scratch is not for people new to r/c, It involves extensice knowledge of all brands, there products, part interchangeability & upgrade options, knowledge of weak points etc etc, aswell as that u need very good skills of making things from metal, plastic, etc & how to make things to the finest tollerances, aswell & the knowledge of what tools would be needed to make the required parts. You will require experance in gearing & motor setups, and the basic knowledge of what electrical components to use.

    I would say after the cost of meterail, tools & electrical components it will end up costing more than a high preformance r/c car.
    Agree I've built a few monstrosities and ended up sinking a pile of cash into em
    Its a trial and error process. You screw up you start from the drawing board and are out the cash. On my last custom I think I sank in $200 or so to end up with a flop due to never being able to locate the proper dogbone I needed.
    So I scrapped it and re-used most the parts onto my current project. I had to add like $10-20 in parts that I didn't have laying around in my RC bone yard




    I would steer clear from nitro cars & start with something electric & to keep costs & dammage from newby driving & crashes go for something Brushed to keep the speeds down.
    Agree on the brushed over brushless for a newbie. Faster you go faster something breaks.

    Nitro so so. I personally found nitro easy to run and get running. If the person likes to tinker nitros for them. Also nitro's performance is based on what you get. Get the cheap niro RC's you won't have a good experience, buy a ofna or HPI(basically $250+ at min), they are easy to get working, and find the right tune.
    If they want to just charge a battery slap it in, or live where its cold the majority of the year (or want to run it in winter), and want to run its a bad fit though.
    With great speed comes greater repair bills.
    Click on My models to see some of what I own. Eventually will add the rest

  16. #16

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    RE: How do I make a remote control car from scratch?

    I've had a launch box and a tt-01, both exellent cars. Never disappointed me, but if you ever wanted to step your game up (whenever your ready) traxxas makes a wide range of cars that don't really break the bank. There is the rustler, stampede, slash, etc. Yeah they are more exspensive then Tamyia but its RTR (ready to run) and their basic level brushed cars do 25-26 mph outta the box. Plus once you know all the parts from ripping Tamyia, You can upgade the traxxas cars with companys like RPM and Integy etc. Just something else to look at, you can upgrade tamyia's to, Its all in the Opinion I like and have a traxxas rustler that is rpm everything that you can get rpm for it. with a VXL BL and I have it geared to do about 55mph on a 3s lipo right now with temps low, its a great reliable RC
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