RCU Review: Redcat Racing Typhoon XP

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    Contributed by: Matt Gunn | Published: September 2008 | Views: 34402 | email icon Email this Article | PDFpdf icon
    Redcat Typhoon XP

    Review by: Matt Gunn

    Typhoon XP
    Distributed exclusively by:
    Redcat Racing
    23 West Watkins Street
    Phoenix, AZ 85003
    Phone: 602-454-6445

    Website: www.redcatracing.com

    Typhoon in action!




    Strong .28 big block

    Fully adjustable suspension

    Aluminum oil-filled shocks

    Lots of anodized parts

    Good tires/wheels for a RTR

    Body not cut out for exhaust exit

    Body not cut well around the wheel wells; graphics were peeling

    Take a look at the ready-to-run 1/8th scale on road scene. There's not much to offer, is there? In fact, you'd be hard pressed to find any rtr 1/8th scale on road cars because this classification of vehicles is dominated by expensive racing kits. Fortunately, Redcat Racing has taken a step in the right direction by offering one of the first rtr 1/8th scale on road vehicles of it's kind, the Typhoon XP. The Typhoon is a 4wd nitro car based on the Hurricane off road buggy chassis. Actually, their chassis are identical except for shocks, wheels, and a few other small differences. This gives the Typhoon XP more of a rally car feel due to its plush suspension and ample ground clearance. Tying everything together is a monstrous .28 big block with all the torque on tap you could ask for.

    So read further if you want to experience a relatively new size of rtr on road and I'm pretty sure you'll be wanting one before you get to the credits. The Typhoon XP is just too much fun miss out on!

    Name: Typhoon XP
    Price: $329 retail price
    Length: 530mm
    Height: 155mm
    Wheelbase: 365mm
    Width: 305mm
    Engine: M28 P3
    Receiver battery used: 4 aa batteries
    Radio equipment: (Included) 2 Channel AM Radio, receiver, throttle servo, steering servo

    • Air Filter Oil
    • Fuel Bottle
    • Wheel wrench
    • 12 AA Batteries
    • Fuel (20%)

    Other Helpful Items

    • Temperature Gauge
    • Threadlock Formula
    • After Run Oil
    • Phillips and Flathead Screwdrivers

    Right front
    Left front
    Body off
    Chassis layout

    The Typhoon XP is an interesting vehicle; It's body is a mix of a sports car look and some sort of Pike's Peak Hill Climb race vehicle. It's definitely original! The long slanted nose gives way to small side windows, a roof scoop, and a read deck with no back window. The fenders are enormous and so is the rear end, which wouldn't be complete without an 11" wing across the back! But even though it's like nothing I've ever seen before, it still looks cool and is very fitting as a hybrid on road-rally car. My only problems with the body are it's lack of quality in the decal and finishing department. A majority of the stickers on the body weren't fully "stuck" down and were peeling up even before I removed it from the box. The wheel wells also seemed to be cut out hastily because the cuts were a little jagged in a few areas. I've found that running a piece of sandpaper along the edge of the cut-outs will smooth out any imperfections.

    The body was installed on the chassis with a hole cut for the antenna. There is no airflow holes cut in the windshield and I recommend cutting one to improve cooling to the engine. Another area to cut is the exhaust exit. The stinger dumps out against the inside of the body and will melt the lexan in a matter of minutes. Take the time to cut a half-circle in the body where the exhaust exits and prevent a melted body as well as nitro oil all over the inside.

    The Typhoon XP is laid out in a typical fashion. The left-side of the chassis sports a polished aluminum tuned pipe. The 125cc fuel tank and motor are positioned at the left-center. The right-hand side sports the servos, and other electronic gear. Plastic guards are mounted on the sides of the aluminum chassis plate, helping to prevent the entry of road-debris into the chassis.

    When viewing the underside of the vehicle, you can get a good glimpse of the 2.5mm T6 aluminum chassis, and the countersunk hardware that hold the buggy's components to it. You'll find the majority of the hardware is Phillips head screws instead of hex heads. The motor mount screws are not recessed and stick out a little but have yet to be damaged.

    Front end
    Rear end

    The front end of the Typhoon XP features 3mm anodized aluminum shock towers with 8 adjustability points for each shock. The shocks, which are somewhat shorter than a the Hurricane buggy's shocks, are aluminum and have ride height adjusters. The adjusters are held snug with a screw and must be loosened, set, and retightened. I really like that Redcat includes dust boots on their larger vehicle's shocks, it's a nice touch and is definitely functional.

    I like the rubber tires included with the Typhoon because they grip well but still break loose for sliding around. If your going to run your Typhoon rally style, don't expect much traction on dirty roads, grass, or gravel. The wheels are decent and have held up well to some side impacts with a few curbs.

    A massive foam bumper sits out front and does a fine job of warding off any a-arm breaking hits. I accidentally collided with a light pole in a parking lot and the foam bumper absorbed all the shock... it just bounced off and kept on going.

    The business end of the Typhoon XP is the engine. Its a big block mill sporting .28 of a cubic inch and goes by the name of M28-P3. This nitro engine has loads of torque down low, through midrange, and a pretty descent top end thanks to the gearing. The M29-P3 features a blue anodized cooling head, slide-bore carb, and a rear exhaust flange. The exhaust header attaches to the exhaust flange with a spring and bends 180-degrees around to meet the tuned pipe. They are attached with a silicone tube and two zip-ties. The chrome pipe is tuned well to the .28 and expels exhaust out the side stinger. The pipe is held in place by a spring-loaded 4-40 sized rod that attaches at the end of the pipe with a set screw.

    Power is transferred from the engine to the center diff through a 3-shoe clutch. The clutch engaged hard and exhibited no bad habits or premature wear. From the clutch we move on to the center differential which splits power equally to the front and back wheels. Its fairly tight and doesn't slip much which allows for some nice 4-wheel power sliding on wet and dry pavement. Dog bones are used to get the power from the center diff to the front and read differentials. These, too, are pretty tight but still allow the inside and outside wheels to spin independently when turning. Four more dog bones are used to transfer power from the diffs to the wheels.

    M28-P3 .28 big-block
    Chrome tuned-pipe
    Fuel tank

    Braking on the Typhoon XP consists of a double-brake setup that requires an allen key to adjust the bias. From the factory, they were set seemingly even and both wheels locked up at the same time if I jammed the brakes. They also exhibited a good level of progressiveness which allowed me to apply different levels of braking and not have it lock up.

    The fuel tank on the Typhoon XP is stout and never leaked a drop of fuel. It has a strong hinge spring and keeps the lid secured and the tank debris free. The fuel lines are routed a little awkwardly and rub against the cooling fins on the engine but I didn't have any issues with them during testing. There is a drain located on the back of the tank to funnel off any fuel that may have spilled during fueling.

    The transmitter included with the Typhoon is the standard AM radio included with all Redcat products. It functioned well, had good range and decent battery life. I especially like the two led battery-level indicator which takes the guess work out of changing low batteries. The trim knobs are located for easy access with the right hand. End point adjustment knobs as well as servo reversing switches are located behind a clear panel on the left side of the controller. The receiver is another Redcat favorite and, again, functioned as expected. The throttle and steering servos have decent torque and functioned as expected. It was nice to see a dust-sealed on-off switch fixed to the end of the radio box; this is where most failures originate and sealing it from the elements nixes that problem.

    Radio box
    Rear arm and hub
    Front arm and knuckle
    Steering and throttle/brake servos
    Front end
    AM radio

    To ready the Typhoon for break-in, I oiled the pre filter, installed 4 aa batteries in the receiver pack and 8 AA's in the transmitter, and threaded the antenna wire through the tube. A little nitro fuel on your finger helps the antenna slide through the tube much easier. The needles from the factory were pretty much off. I have no idea if they even checked them but I turned the high needle at least one turn in to get it to fire and the low needle almost 2 turns in, keep in mind this was just for break-in. The break-in consisted of 2 tanks worth of idling and 2 tanks of figure-eights followed by a final tank of 3/4 throttle passes. Its a good habit to check the glow plug after break-in because they can be ruined from the rich needle settings.

    The Typhoon XP is a basher at heart. It is sprung more like a buggy than an on road car and the rear sway bar and shorter shocks help minimize body roll while still seeping control on rough surfaces. All three differentials are tight and usually put the power to all four wheels evenly. This makes for some exciting slides if the pavement is slightly damp as the car almost holds a drift. Dry pavement control is superb for an on road basher, especially when transitioning from uneven surfaces to pavement. The suspension just soaks up the bumps.

    The acceleration from the .28 engine is great but because it's a single speed, the top end is limited when compared to some other on road nitro's, but don't let that deter you, its plenty fast! Starting the engine is pretty easy once you get the tune down. At first, it was very rich and I progressively leaned both needles until she sang without lean bogging. I've also noticed that the engine is more difficult to start after a run when the engine is up at operating temps, let it cool for a few minutes and starting will be easier.

    My only issue I encountered was the exhaust exit. It just dumps right into the side of the body. There is no hole cut to get it out and the heat melted the body pretty quickly. As already stated above, if you cut a half-circle in the body where the stinger ends, then the exhaust will blow out the side of the body and not dump inside, which makes a mess.

    After doing some serious wheel spinning on all surfaces, the tires have shown very little wear, although I can see where they are beginning to thin on the inside. I feel they could last near a years worth of weekend bashing before needing to be replaced.

    From the factory, the Typhoon XP is raised up a little more than I think it should be. If you are running wide open and crank the wheel, it may flip over. I suggest lowering the front preload spacers to get the front end down, the back is set fine as it is.

    During the review, I experienced no broken parts or funny quirks to mention, the Typhoon is pretty stout and makes for a great afternoon parking lot terror as well as a good learning vehicle.

    Typhoon in action!



    1/8th scale on road nitro's are out there, but finding a well-priced rtr is not easy. So the natural choice should be the Redcat Racing Typhoon XP. It's a strong, well priced, good performing car that is at home on the roughest paved surfaces, and some hard packed dirt areas as well. We have all seen the full-size rally cars slide from the dirt road onto the paved road, well the Typhoon XP is that rally car.

    I feel the Typhoon would be a great entry vehicle for nitro as well as on road because it's forgiving. you can bounce it off a curb and usually keep on driving, or flip it a few dozen times without fear of destroying it... just don't run it full speed into anything!

    For 1/8th scale nitro fun I would recommend this Redcat to beginners, novices, or seasoned rc 'ers. Thanks for reading my review of the Typhoon XP, now go bashing!

    Typhoon XP
    Distributed exclusively by:
    Redcat Racing
    23 West Watkins Street
    Phoenix, AZ 85003
    Support Phone: 602.454.6445
    Website: www.redcatracing.com

    Thanks to Jessica Halsak for helping me test the Typhoon XP.

    Comments on RCU Review: Redcat Racing Typhoon XP

    Posted by: Kmot on 09/09/2008
    Looked like a ton of fun in the wet parking lot!
    Posted by: derbi75 on 09/09/2008
    holy shnikies Batman 1/8 drifting I must have this car!!!!!!!!!
    Posted by: muck76 on 09/09/2008
    Nice write up. i see you did not get into the diffs, are they greased or oil?
    Posted by: yaris on 09/09/2008
    this car is based on the hurricane that have oil in diffs, so its probably oil in this one
    Posted by: webdr on 09/10/2008
    Sorry, yes, they are oiled and quite tight. Its a good setup. matt
    Posted by: redbarton on 09/30/2008
    Wow! That is one ugly body! This reminds me of the Inferno GT!
    Posted by: Mr_Byte on 01/29/2009
    I like it, and I have a hurricane. It's the same chassis, and it holds up well.
    Page: 1
    The comments, observations and conclusions made in this review are solely with respect to the particular item the editor reviewed and may not apply generally to similar products by the manufacturer. We cannot be responsible for any manufacturer defects in workmanship or other deficiencies in products like the one featured in the review.

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