Hello I thank you for the quick response concerning my engine woes. First attempt at break in resulted in breaking the pull start on the initial first tank and subsequently changed to electric start to use my cordless drill. I have been very confused when it comes to the proper break in procedures. Information that arrived with the Caldera 3.0 and the U Tube tutorials viewed seem to contradict each other. When the engine is replaced I will be inclined to have a local hobby shop break it in. On the first tank of fuel (20%) the engine was started with the factory setting on the carburetor and allowed to idle for the entire tank. The idle was very erratic and engine would surge often. The engine was allowed to cool for approx half an hour and then refueled with the carb setting leaned 1/2 turn. This second tank was allowed to idle for 3/4 of the fuel and still had the same very erratic idle. The last quarter of tank the truck was run around the yard but never above half throttle. When the engine stalled assumed the fuel was not being picked up since the tank was almost empty. Break in was to resume the next day since it was getting dark. Couple drops of after run oil were dropped into the carburetor and engine turned over a few times. The next morning the carb was leaned another half turn (even tried adjusting carb back to original setting and checked glow plug) but there was no success in getting it to start and resorted to taking it to a local shop. You are correct in stating Redcat is not a popular name among the two hobby shops in this area and with much pleading they agreed to look it over. After several days I was informed the engine was blown. I have no knowledge as to what the actual internal damage may be. Their only suggestion was to replace the engine or scrap truck and purchase a Traxxas from them. I have not picked the truck up yet but can say it does turn over freely. While turning it over on occaision it may have sounded like it might fire.
Well you are not wrong to say that there is not a ton of info provided with Redcat models. This to me is the weak point. Unfortunately at this price point, Redcat attracts a lot of newcomers to the hobby that really do need a little more instruction.
It's sad that hobby shops still try to turn Redcat repairs away. Unfortunately this is all too common. They tell Redcat owners their equipment is no good and was a waste of money. Nobody on the forum will try to compare a $190 nitro Caldera to a $560 Traxxas Revo, but a $340 Traxxas nitro Rustler is not a huge step ahead "if any". Remember that Redcat takes away from hobby shops entry level equipment. Traxxas and Hpi just can't compete in the entry level price range of the Redcat vehicles, while their quality is only marginally better.
So on to your problem. Are you new to the hobby? Most likely the pull start broke because the engine we flooded when attempting to start it. These .18 engines prime almost instantly, it doesn't take much to flood them. Now also adding the spin start back plate can also add some problems. If your using a drill motor to start the engine you can wipe the engine out very quickly because a drill motor will attempt to turn the motor over even when flooded and locked up.
As far as the needles are concerned, you should not have had to lean in a whole turn on break in. Sometimes you might need to turn in a 1/4 of a turn to keep it idling, but a whole turn sounds a little drastic. Still though, from what you described the engine sounds like it will probably still run. The after run oil certainly added to the hard start problem the next day. Unless its going to sit around awhile, you probably don't need it, most of the fuels today are designed to not need it. I would turn your needles out again, check your carb gap. Make sure your igniter is charged good and check your plug. If all that's good I bet a few drops of fuel down the carb will fire it right up.