Racing's first entry into the crawling market is a monstrous bead
locked beauty dubbed the Rockslide. This overly large crawler
features twin 540-sized motors, four wheel steering, a crawler
esc, and more flex than your garden variety Olympic gymnast. Having
only operated 2.2 class crawlers, the Rockslide seemed somewhat
intimidating with multiple steering settings that can be chosen
on the fly. I soon found myself wondering when I would need rear-wheel
steering versus front-wheel steering, but after a few trips to
the rock piles, I realized different steering settings can help
the Rockslide negotiate the toughest challenges. You just have
to learn what works best for each situation.
Rockslide review was shot at Stone Mountain Park, GA. This site
has a great mix of loose dirt, pine straw, and granite rocks.
As it has many times in the past, I knew the park would put this
crawler through it paces.
Rockslide Price: $289.99 retail price Length: 680mm Height: 340mm Wheelbase: 495mm Width: 390mm Motors: Electric Brushed 100T 540 ESC: Crawler Type Auto Hill Braking w/ cooling fan Battery used: 2000mAh NiMH 6 cell 7.2v Charger used: Team Checkpoint TC-1030 Radio equipment: (Included) 3 Channel FM Radio, receiver,
dual steering servos
Bead lock wheels
first thing you notice is how long this crawler really is. Its
got a whopping 19.5" wheelbase which is only an inch shorter
than the 1/5th scale Hurricane
C5. The Rockslide stands tall as well, but doesn't seem to
suffer too much from it's overly high center of gravity. This
is due in part to the location of the motors on each axle; mounting
them in such a manner lowers the center of gravity and reduces
tipping in all but the most extreme attitudes.
body is a standard 1/8th scale monster truck shell with professional
blue painted graphics. There are no other color schemes currently
shipping from Redcat at this time. In my opinion, the only downfall
of the Rockslide is the size of the body. I realize the step between
1/8th and 1/5th scales is large and there really isn't any sizes
between but to satisfy my own curiosity, I would love to see a
1/5th scale body on this crawler. Now, with that out of the way,
I'll admit I love the presence it has. The Rockslide's oversized
stature begs for steep inclines and tall ledges that send the
smaller 2.2's packing.
take the body off and have a look at the chassis. The Rockslide
uses a pair of plastic chassis plates that attach to an upper
and lower frame to create a strong box for mounting the electronics,
shocks, and suspension links. The battery mounts longitudinally
on top of the lower frame while the esc and receiver mount on
top of the upper frame. The chassis box frame bolts together with
phillips head screws which have all stayed put even after a few
months of weekend playing.
suspension arms are rather unique to say the least; not only do
they pivot up and down, but the bottom links attach with ball
joints to allow side to side pivoting to reduce the chance of
binding and increase overall flexibility. This doesn't affect
the alignment of the axles which stay centered but rather allows
the bottom of the shocks to pivot left and right slightly. The
bottom arms are made of high impact plastic and the upper arms
are gold anodized aluminum. All the links held up well to anything
I threw at them and I have a feeling they will continue to function
without any breakage issues. The Rockslide includes eight oil
filled shocks with aluminum caps. They performed as expected and
were set ideally for this vehicle. They allow for some serious
flex while not allowing too much body roll. Knurled adjusters
make adjusting preload and ride height as easy as turning a knob.
Coil over shocks
axles are really self contained transmissions with a locked differential
sending power to both wheels. Dogbones are used to link the diff
to the wheel hubs and everything is encased in a strong nylon
axle housing. All the gears are nylon except for the pinion gear
and the differential uses a steel rod w/ drive cups on either
end and spin agear ratio of 1:41.6. Having a motor on each axle
has a number of advantages. First, running two motors means you
can turn bigger meats with less strain versus a single motor.
Second, the lack of drive shafts means ground clearance and less
contact with the drive shafts on the rocks. Third, the motors
are mounted low on the axles which keeps the weight down near
the wheels where it's needed and lowers the center of gravity.
Another plus is there aren't too many dual motor crawlers out
there, so you can rest assured that yours will stick out in a
sea of similar looking reary-to-run rigs.
steering system is unique on the Rockslide. It features four selectable
modes to help get it up and over the toughest obstacles. You can
scroll through the modes by pressing a button located on the grip
of the transmitter. For the most part the steering servos did
a great job of turning the wheels even in somewhat tight spots.
I only had a few times when the big oversized tires were wedged
in tight and the servo wasn't able to turn the wheels to full
experimented with all four steering modes and came to the conclusion
that four wheel steering is the most useful of the group. Below
are a few pictures of the modes and brief descriptions of each.
Rockslide has four steering options that can be selected by
scrolling through them with a 3rd channel button on the transmitter's
grip. The first two are front steer followed by rear steer.
Rear steer is my least favorite setting because most all situations
can be tackled with either front or four wheel steer.
third option is four wheel steer. This is my favorite steering
mode because some seriously tight turns are possible. Four
wheel steering makes navigating tough courses a breeze.
last steering option points all four wheels in the same direction.
This will crab the vehicle to the left or right. I could see
a few instances when this setting would come in handy but
it's not one I choose often. I think it just looks cool more
steering servos and tie rods are protected by rather large bumpers
on the front and rear. they mount directally to the axles and
moves independently of the chassis so the servo is always protected.
Even though the bumpers are massive, they didn't interfere with
the Rockslide's approach or departure angles because they are
positioned just behind the front of the tires.
tire and wheel combo is what makes the Rockslide capable of crawling
over stuff that leaves the 1/10th scale crawlers spinning their
wheels. These balloon tires put alot of rubber on the rocks and
deform quite well to create a larger contact patch. The combo
is called the HBX Rock Crawler and features true bead lock wheels
that come in bright orange and silver. The tires have massive
lugs that carry over onto the sidewalls for added grip. The rims
are drilled to let air out quickly so the tires can conform to
the rocks better. For what you pay for this crawler, Id say the
tires and wheels are a nice balance between performance and price.
motors front & rear
Esc and receiver
electronic speed control features hill hold, also known as a drag
brake, to prevent the Rockslide from rolling quickly down the
hill when you let off the throttle. This feature classifies the
esc as a true crawler-type unit and is a must for any serious
crawler. There is also a fan positioned on top of the esc to help
it keep cool while it powers the two 540 motors. A standard on/off
switch is mounted to the chassis forward of the esc. The motors
that power the Rockslide are both 100-turn 540 sized sealed motors.
Because they are sealed, there is no access to the brushes, so
replacing them is not an option. If they ever do wear out, just
replace the motors.
Hub w/ bearings
Bottom ball mounted link
Wheel nuts and 23mm hubs
Front and rear steering servos
3 channel FM transmitter
transmitter is a 3 channel FM pistol grip with an lcd display. The
display shows your current battery voltage, model number, and what
steering mode your in depicted by a symbol of a drive train and
four wheels. When you click the button on the grip, the lcd will
cycle through different modes. The wheels on the lcd will turn to
show you what mode your in. It takes a little getting used to but
soon becomes as easy as using the throttle and steering. The transmitter
has a nice soft foam grip on the steering wheel versus the hard
plastic ones you sometimes find on am transmitters. This transmitter
also has a 10 model memory ...a first for Redcat Racing.
most Redcat vehicles, there isn't much to do to ready the Rockslide
for crawling. Add 8 AA batteries to the transmitter, slide the
antenna through the included tube and attach it to the chassis,
and charge a battery. Make sure to check the servo throws and
trims before you head out. You might as well climb around inside
the house to get the feel of four wheel steering, which adds another
dimension to crawling.
off the bat, the Rockslide impressed me with is climbing prowess.
I brought a few of my 2.2 crawlers to play with and the Rockslide
out performed them hands down; this 1/8th scale crawler is a great
climber right out the box.
sound you wont mistake is that of the servos working. They are
loud and work extra hard to turn the big carcasses, especially
when wedged in tight. I can count a few instances where either
the front or the back servo just couldn't turn the wheels because
of being in a really tight spot. I think this is fine because
I would rather the servo stop than push until the gears stripped
or the servo horn broke. With my favorite steering setting active:
four wheel steer, the Rockslide snakes it way up and over rocks
almost effortlessly. It can almost turn inside it's own radius
and even tighter if it's off camber or using a rock to help pivot.
Rear steer just didn't appeal to me and the setting "four
wheels same direction" looked really cool but wasn't that
useful. For playing around the house, the rocks, or just showing
off to your friends, it might come in handy.
HBX Rock Crawler tires provided some serious grip on loose dirt,
rock, pine straw, and even wet slippery granite. I was impressed
with how well rounded these tires are and their ability to tackle
any terrain. They emit a deep sound as the lugs spin their way
over the rock which just adds to the experience of this bigger-than-usual
are two types of crawling styles the Rockslide is capable of;
you can slowly tackle obstacles with finesse and precision, or
you can pin the throttle and conquer the rocks with brute force!
The twin 540 motors provide ample torque to push the Rockslide
up some pretty steep inclines and while wheel speed isn't much
more than a brisk walk, it's enough if you have to back up and
gun it to get the rear wheels over a ledge.
said it a few times throughout the review, but it's worth saying
again; this crawler has some serious flex. You can just about
turn the front axle 90 degrees without even touching the rear
axle. And when the Rockslide does roll over, it usually leads
with one axle, followed by the body, and then the other axle.
I sometimes feel like the Rockslide is three separate parts working
together towards a common goal; the front an rear axles act independently
and the chassis just holds them together. Once you drive it, you'll
Rockslide is the most intriguing vehicle I've ever owned. It's
a large 1/8th scale crawler with twin motors, front and rear steering,
and almost infinite flexibility. It's equally at home climbing
around a make-shift course in your house or the nastiest rocks
out in the field. With a price tag under 300 dollars, it can easily
become part of your existing rc garage without breaking the bank.
your looking for your first crawler, or just something new that's
sure to turn heads at the local crawling spot, I suggest you get
your hands on the Redcat Racing Rockslide ...you wont be disappointed.
Distributed exclusively by: Redcat Racing
West Watkins St
Phoenix, Arizona 85003
Support Phone: 602.454.6445
to racer Jessica Halsak for helping me test the Rockslide.
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.