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Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

Old 08-03-2008, 01:54 PM
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simplecj
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Default Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

I felt like we needed a new thread here to discuss methods of waterproofing our trucks for driving in snow or rain or possibly fully submerged.

With the Traxxas waterproof e-Maxx and now the Slash, we have access to some stock waterproof solutions and it's likely that we'll see more of this. After all, how many of us have been cruising around and accidentally splash through a puddle as we cringe at the thought of shorting out our controllers or other expensive electronics? I believe it should be simple to waterproof most electronics. Lets discuss what methods there are and how to apply those methods to different pieces of equipment.

I'll start with my primary question...

I have a CC Sidewinder esc. This unit seems like it should be a simple thing to waterproof, mainly because the on-off switch is external to the unit and all programming can be done by receiver and PC.

I'm thinking all that would be required is some good clear epoxy or silicon sealant around the wires, outside perimeter of the heat sink and around the seam of the plastic case.



Has anyone waterproofed a Sidewinder or have any suggestions?

Does anyone else have questions about waterproofing?

Old 08-03-2008, 02:18 PM
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Takedown
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

Heres my suggestion. Unless you want to fry it, dont water proof it...
Old 08-03-2008, 03:14 PM
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chippythekid
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

yea u start coating those cooling fins and things heat up real quick.
Old 08-03-2008, 03:15 PM
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simplecj
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

Why not? As long as the heat sink isn't covered and the unit can dissipate heat, why would waterproofing it cause it to fry? Oh, I also have a micro fan mounted above mine for forced air cooling.

EDIT: When I say silicon around the heatsink, I of course mean only around the outer perimeter, not into the fins.... Why would you coat the fins?? Water can't seep through solid metal. There are no holes in the heatsink either.
Old 08-03-2008, 04:03 PM
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Takedown
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

ORIGINAL: simplecj

Why not? As long as the heat sink isn't covered and the unit can dissipate heat, why would waterproofing it cause it to fry? Oh, I also have a micro fan mounted above mine for forced air cooling.

EDIT: When I say silicon around the heatsink, I of course mean only around the outer perimeter, not into the fins.... Why would you coat the fins?? Water can't seep through solid metal. There are no holes in the heatsink either.
It can but knowere near as well as it could and should. The electronics have to be able to breathe and knowing the sidewinder it'll be a fireball after every run if it runs as hot as it always does...
Old 08-03-2008, 06:25 PM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

I have heard of people opening their electronics up and filling the case with silicone glue. How much hotter the ESC will run in that configuration is hard to say.

I think if you really want to make your car/truck waterproof your best bet is to buy an already waterproof brushed esc. Then just swap back and forth when you want to run brushless or in water.

As for other electronics you can easily waterproof the receiver by sealing it in a balloon with some zip ties and silicone glue at the opening. Servos can be waterproofed by dipping them in plastidip or by running a bead of silicone glue over the seams/screws. To seal the shaft output you can just put some grease around it.
Old 08-03-2008, 06:41 PM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

Ya, I bought a Slash XL-5 with a titan 12T for like $50 on eBay... then I went and got the Slash servo and the waterproof reciever box. I'm gonna make my beater rustler into a wet/dry truck.

Was still wanting to try to waterproof the sidewinder and other electronics in my nicer brushless rustler. I've had a few close calls due to uncontrolled flight off a hill and rolling into a big pool of water (I don't drive at that spot anymore) and of course the odd puddle or wet gutter I run across. It'd just be nice to know that the water won't damage my electronics. Know what I mean?

As far as the electronics "breathing" they are already almost completely enclosed by the plastic case, I don't see there being a huge difference if it's sealed up.
Old 08-04-2008, 02:13 AM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

any recomendations for some decnt waterproff esc's?
Old 08-04-2008, 02:49 AM
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shaunmichaeljohnson
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

LRP make brushless waterproof ESC's.
ive never owned one adn i dont plan on owning one as they simply arnt a mamba LOL

you should be able to waterproof with "nutral cure" silicone as it is used in underground junction boxes and is 100% electrically safe.
shaun
Old 08-04-2008, 10:11 PM
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Revotrx3
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

my clod, 100% waterproof
Old 08-04-2008, 11:38 PM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

My Rusty died submerged in saltwater...

I sent it 5 days ago to Traxxas to repairs, so in the meantime, I'm modding out my Rusty with new waterproof parts. I bought a waterproof servo, and I ballooned my radio box. I'm going to not worry too much about the ESC when I get it back, since it is water resistant, and never had electronic problems when it got a few splashes from puddles. As well as it being a dry summer...

Do I need to worry a whole lot about my brushless motor? I don't think it'll take any real damage if it gets hit by small amounts of water, right?
Old 08-05-2008, 12:08 AM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

Someone needs ot come up with a haz-mat suit for rc cars.

Then i might think about running my race beauties in the watery mucky ooey goey mud.
Old 08-05-2008, 12:13 AM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

saltwater will do in any motor, brushed or brushless.... fresh water shouldn't be too bad on either type, depending on how dirty it is and how hard the water is... brushed and brushless motors both will work fine even totally under water, in fact a brushless motor is better for totally submerged use, since the only possible place for electricity to touch water, is where the wires exit the motor and connect to the ESC... the wiring inside the motor is sealed.... and you dont have to worry about the copper com corroding.
Old 08-05-2008, 12:14 AM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

ORIGINAL: j.m.

Someone needs ot come up with a haz-mat suit for rc cars.

Then i might think about running my race beauties in the watery mucky ooey goey mud.
Saran wrap [sm=thumbup.gif]
Old 08-05-2008, 12:50 AM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

I guess part of my desire for waterproofing comes from wanting to run my truck in the snow during the winter months. Snow isn't dirty (not the snow I'd drive in anyways), so I'm not worried about dirt and mud and crap like that. If I ever hit the water during the summer, I'd just make sure I cleaned it off real good.

PLUS!!!! If your electronics are water proof, do you realize how much easier it would be to clean your truck?? A simple hose down, maybe some scrubbing and then let it sit in the sun and it's clean as could be! This alone should be enough incentive to go waterproof...

PS: Revotrx3, thats a sick looking cane!! I can't even see how you packed steering into that, it's awesome. AND WATERPROOF!! Thanks for sharing!
Old 08-05-2008, 12:59 AM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

I got a question... what about waterproofing batteries?? I have two A123 packs that I built and am wondering how to protect them from water. I have them wrapped in good shrink wrap, but there's seems around both ends and where the wire comes out.

And what about the connections? As long as you don't go in salty water that conducts well enough, will it not short out? Seems like the major weakness is where the wire ends are soldered onto the motor and the solder points at the connectors.
Old 08-05-2008, 07:30 AM
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Revotrx3
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

thxs, steering is on the axle. it a water truck not a pimp cane. its not a crawler either, its a 100% built water truck
Old 08-05-2008, 08:38 AM
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j.m.
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

Batteries are fine under water.

I ran my stampede through snow without doing anything to it.

You'll be fine.

For water proofing a brushless motor, you could take it apart and seal the endcaps with grease, and use silicon sealant where the wires come out of the can.

Yo should have shrinkwrap over the bullet plugs anyway, because if they touch, electricity will flow between the connectors, rather than through the motor (electricity ALWAYS takes the path of least resistance.)
It will also protect they from corrosion.

Being a boat guy, i know what saltwater can do to a vessel. Wash your truck off with fresh water after you get ANY amount of salt or brackish water.

If your truck is waterproof, it won't hurt it if you just wash it off.
Old 08-05-2008, 08:16 PM
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Revotrx3
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

Ah, update, good and bad, good got the body mounted BAD, the front motor came loose only got to drive it for 5 second, PIC!!!!!!!!!

Old 08-05-2008, 09:58 PM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

Hey guys hows it going.
Here's my pede with a sidewinder 5700 playing in the puddles. From what I hear it is SPLASH proof, so i took it out for a run and ended up with this.
[link=http://www.veoh.com/videos/v15421471nrxDR3hG]http://www.veoh.com/videos/v15421471nrxDR3hG[/link]
It has a stock servo and I ballooned the receiver, the motor and ESC was left alone.
[link=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UgFIo4V7__A]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UgFIo4V7__A[/link]
If I were to drive submerged I would just get a waterproof ESC and a cheap brushed motor.
Old 08-06-2008, 10:54 AM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

Look like our answer is right here. I've heard that a cell phone can get coated for $50, so a ESC should be like $15.


http://gcaptain.com/maritime/blog/tag/golden-shellback/
Old 08-06-2008, 12:12 PM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread


ORIGINAL: j.m.

Someone needs ot come up with a haz-mat suit for rc cars.

Then i might think about running my race beauties in the watery mucky ooey goey mud.
But you race offroad cars on dirt (and sometimes mud)?
Old 08-06-2008, 01:21 PM
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simplecj
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread


ORIGINAL: cubmaster

Look like our answer is right here. I've heard that a cell phone can get coated for $50, so a ESC should be like $15.


http://gcaptain.com/maritime/blog/tag/golden-shellback/
That's awesome!!!! Thank you for sharing!
Old 12-09-2008, 02:18 PM
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Revotrx3
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

Well, since its winter time, i thought i would bring this thread back up, post up all your waterproofing for other members to try!
Old 12-09-2008, 04:45 PM
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Default RE: Official Waterproofing Your RC Thread

well here's an idea...
for brushed:
buy a traxxas XL-5 waterproof ESC and a slash reciver box and youre ready to roll as long as u clean out your motor (make sure u use an old shatty one)


for brushless (yes it is possible)
oil AND grease bb's in the motor, grease helps keep water out, try anbd seal up any exposed BB with some kind of rubber plug.
LRP make waterproof BRUSHLESS ESC's.
and on the other hand i bet without much work the VXL ESC could be made waterPROOF.
my VXL ESC stock went through hell and back, sloppy mud from racing, reversed into the dam and drove back out, puddles galore, the works!!
from what i have seen though you need to wipe some silicone around the case seal, sencor plug and around the EDGES of the heatsink (prolly best to use a heat resisrant one for this) glue gun glue would work too.
then get a slash or emaxx reciver box (these things rock!! my reciver looks like new) and youre ready to go.

btw, it's just turned summer over here LOL

shaun

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