Category Archives: Opinions

The Hotshot 4WD makes a new appearance – In a comical way – Building the Tamiya 58685 Comical Hotshot GF-01CB

After we were so enthusiastic about the first Tamiya 4WD comical model, the “Comical Avante GF-01CB”, it was almost natural to take a closer look at the new “Comical Hotshot”. For us, the “Comical Avante” is one of the most beautiful models in the Comical series, along with the “Comical Grasshopper”. The original Hotshot, the first Tamiya 4WD buggy ever, is of course more than predestined as a template for the “Comical Series”. Especially due to the narrow and flat design of the original classic buggy. As with the Avante, we also customized and tuned the Hotshot a bit, according to our ideas. We stayed original with the body, as it is pre-painted red in the kit, as was previously the case with the Avante. But an unpainted body set is now available from Tamiya, and comes with No. 51657.With this, you can also create your own paint scheme.

Normally we use the excellent Tamiya GF-01 54670 dampers for these fun models. But they are blue anodized, and not really a good match. And in my opinion, the original red CVA dampers are optically not that perfect. That’s why I chose the virtually identical Tamiya 54541 CC-01 Hop Up damper set this time. The golden aluminum shock caps make them a perfect match for the bright red of the Hotshot. I´m still not totally happy with the colour of the standard wheels. But that´s complaining on a very high level. A gold plated wheel would be perfect here.

Unfortunately there is no driver figure included with the “Comical Hotshot” kit. Under the relatively narrow Hotshot body there is actually very little space for it. In a supplement, Tamiya explains how you can at least accommodate the head of the beautiful 54864 driver figure which was created by “pdc designworks”. With the help of a Lexan bracket. Of course we followed this suggestion, and with it there comes a lot more “life” into our little racer. Oh, and one more thing we left out on “Comical Avante”. LED lights on the front of the bumper and on the body. And of course also red taillights. Looks great, and so realistic.

Otherwise, we have relied on the tried and tested parts that we have already used in our „Comical Avante. A complete list can be found at the end of this report. As expected, the little red racer drives just wonderfully. And with a little practice, all kinds of stunts and tricks are no problem. There is hardly a Tamiya RC model that is more fun.
We are already looking forward to the next comical model. Our team would love to see a “Comical Subaru Brat”. Let´s go Tamiya. Make it happen!

This is a list of genuine Tamiya Hop Up parts, we´ve used on this car:
54924 GF-01 Ball Bearing Set
50808 TG10 Long Wheel Axle
53509 Hard Flourine Coated 0.6 Aluminum Pinion (20T/F201)
54541 CC-01 Aluminum Oil Damper 4PCS
53974 TRF 501 Front Spring Set
54588 GF-01 Aluminum Steering Arm
54586 Lightweight Gear Shaft 5x50mm For GF-01 WR-02 WT-01
51000 Servo Saver Hi Torque Type (Black)
54473 Aluminum Wheelie Roller Set for WR-02 WR-02G
54587 Aluminum Servo Stay WR-02/GF-01

Tamiya (Classic) Off Road Racing at its peak – The Top Force Evo. (2021)


When the Tamiya Top Force Evolution came onto the market in 1992, it was a practically unattainable model for me, as well as for many other young Tamiya fans, due to the high price.
At the time, my hard-saved money was just enough to buy a Tamiya Astute, which I really loved back then.

The “normal” Top Force was a good car, although it actually got by with relatively very common TA-01 technology. As a good driver with a well built “Top Force”, you definately had a chance, also in higher class races. But the “Top Force Evolution” went one better in all areas. Carbon plate chassis, Ball differentials front and rear, universal joint shafts for front and rear, steel cardan shaft, a full set of ball bearings, and last but not least the fantastic aluminum dampers, which are still absolutely competitive today.

Tamiya has the Top Force Evolution revised very carefully. The character of the car is still the same. The universal joint shafts were replaced by more modern CVD shafts. The shock towers, for example, are now also made of carbon. In the 90s these were still made of FRP. And I almost forgot one thing. The body and spoiler comes already cut out and pre-painted in Tamiya PS-23 “Gun Metal”, which is still the original colour code.

The Evo. comes with standard Tamiya ESC and 540 brushed motor. We have equipped our Top Force Evo. with a modern sensor-controlled brushless system, a low profile and fast digital steering servo, and an aluminum motor mount. The construction of the “new” Top Force Evo. was a real pleasure. Hardly any other car has given me more pleasure building it in recent years. It is the perfect car for the increasingly popular vintage racing. When fitting more modern 2.2 wheels and tires, the Evo. is ready for your local race track.

Some words about the look and design of the whole car. The „One Big Wing“ look of the Top Force is still a stunner, and you can call it a real milestone in Tamiya´s classic buggy designs. Wing and body are aerodynamically one piece. The whole car looks so sleek, flat and fast. Tamiya made no compromises here.

All in all, thank you Tamiya for this wonderful new re-release. We are looking forward to the release of the upcoming Super Avante TD4 and “Blockhead” Wild One Offroader. With the “Blockhead” Wild One, really a dream comes true. Also many thanks to Tamico and Dickie-Tamiya, for providing us with the Top Force Evo. Kit.

Guesses and Wishes for Tamiya 2021 Releases


Like at the previous changes of the year

a) which products do you think Tamiya could release this year (static, RC, Mini 4WD, anything else) and

b) which products would you personally like to be released (regardless of if their chances are realistic)?

Feel free to use the comments link at the end of this entry (comments are shown after being checked which can take some hours).

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TamiyaBlog
sincerely thanks all of you
for our continuously growing community
and wishes a better new year and decade
full of joy and health with
Tamiya!
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Created to conquer – The Tamiya VQS (2020)

Besides the Tamiya Avante, probably the most beautiful and most famous Tamiya 4WD buggy of the 80s, there were also three other buggies in this series of cars. We all know the Egress, as it was the last “expansion stage” of the Avante before the scepter was handed over to the “Top Force Evolution”.
The two “entry-level models” in the competition, the “Vanquish” and the “Avante 2001”, were somewhat in the shadows.
Both models were technically almost identical and should be suitable for entry into the rc racing competition.
The use of a plastic tub chassis kept costs down. The “Vanquish” in particular was able to shine visually.
And this one has now been reissued as “VQS”. Naming rights have probably forced Tamiya to change the name to “VQS”.
Nonetheless, one of the most beautiful Tamiya buggies of the late 80s era. This buggy combines a beautiful classic color scheme with a very modern futuristic styled body, as well as, given the Hotshot and Thundershot series of vehicles, much more modern technology.
The “new” VQS kit comes with a pre-painted body, which allows the inexperienced model maker in particular to complete the model much faster.
We are particularly pleased about the improvements Tamiya gave the “VQS”. CVD’s front and rear, as well as the aluminum milled steering knuckles at the front were taken over from the Avante and Egress. In addition, the buggy is practically completely equipped with ball-bearings. Only 6 small ball bearings still need to be added.
Tamiya also has made a very nice bonus for the “VQS”. The “VQS Hi Cap Damper Set 47455”. We all know and love these dampers from the 80s. Also suitable for many other cars of that time. We have also equipped our “VQS” with the new Hi Caps. Visually and technically a real pleasure.
Overall, we went the classic way with our example. A Tamiya Super Stock BZ brushed motor and the Tamiya Hi Torque Servo Saver complete the car.
As with every Tamiya car, building it was a real treat. And the builder is rewarded with a beautiful model after completion.
We at TamiyaBlog are very happy about this iconic re-release. A real beauty, the new Tamiya “VQS” (2020)

Many thanks to Dickie Tamiya and Tamico for providing us with the Tamiya “VQS” kit.

Dragons never die – Return of the Tamiya Super (Storm) Dragon

We, the TamiyaBlog team have always been big fans of the Japanese comic-inspired Tamiya dragon buggies. The Fire Dragon in particular is one of our favorites.
So the Super Storm Dragon is one for us too.
In the 1980s the Super Dragon was only a body set for the Hornet and Thunder Shot chassis.
Now the dragon is back as a complete kit on a classic Hornet chassis.
As with some of the new kits, the body is also pre-painted and only needs to be decaled.
As you have noticed, the name has also changed. Possibly because of licensing problems.
But Tamiya helps us here with the stickers. You can cut the “Storm” out of the sticker, and so you have a “Storm Dragon”. The number 18 stickers on the side from the original release are also included in the sticker sheet.

Building was a real joy. You feel like a kid again, building your first Tamiya Off Road Racer.
We have installed a classic black Sport Tuned motor, a complete set of ball bearings and classic aluminum rim covers in our Super Dragon for that special custom look.

We really love this car. It brings back so many great memories from the 1980s, the golden era of the Tamiya RC cars.
Enjoy the Super Dragon!
We are really looking forward to the comeback of the Tamiya Fire Dragon.

Many thanks to Dickie Tamiya and Tamico for providing us with the Super Dragon kit.

Comical Fun Goes 4WD – Building the Tamiya Comical Avante GF-01CB

The team behind TamiyaBlog loves the Tamiya Comical and Fun models. It is not a secret. And secretly, we have been hoping for a 4WD comical buggy based on GF-01 for a long time. When the Comical Avante was actually presented at the Nuremberg Toy Fair 2020, we could hardly believe that Tamiya really did it.

The Avante, a Tamiya design icon of the 1980s, as a comical model. Can it go well?

In short, yes !

The original Avante has such an elegant, slim and technical design that I could hardly imagine how even a comical body could fit on the current and relatively wide GF-01 chassis.

Tamiya mastered it with flying colors. For the wanted comical look, the body was of course compressed as usual. Nevertheless, the body adapts wonderfully to the chassis, like the body of the original Avante. The already well known beautiful driver figure from pdc designworks, which is already included with the kit, fits so perfectly under the pilot’s cockpit, and literally cries out to start driving right away. Exhaust pipes now come in a carbon look and underline the professional Hi-Tech look of the Avante. But let’s take a look at the technical side.

It is very interesting to see how Tamiya adapted the well-known GF-01 chassis to the comical buggy set up. The main frame, which also serves as the gearbox, has been provided with additional fastening points on the rear for the new body bracket. The wishbones were of course adopted from the WR-02CB Comical models. A new slim bumper rounds off the concept harmoniously. A number of headlights can also be mounted on this bumper. But we decided against it. For a clean look. Oh, i almost forgot. Tamiya donated new tires to the Comical Avante. And how we love this design. Let´s hope for more models using this type of tire.

As with the Comical Grasshopper, we also donated a few sensible Tamiya Hop Ups to the new Avante. Starting with the complete ball bearing set, via the Sport Tuned motor, in combination with a 20 tooth motor pinion. Although the Tamiya Comical models are all already equipped with CVA oil shock absorbers, the Avante is no exception, we have again installed the great GF-01 aluminum damper set. It just looks fantastic and it works that way. GF-01 steering arm and Tamiya Hi Torque Servo Saver with aluminum servo horn make steering much more precise. Incidentally, we highly recommend installing the 50808 TG10 wheel axles, also recommended by Tamiya in a supplementary sheet. These cause a widening of the track. The thicker hex adapters, which are required for this are already included with the kit. As a result, the Comical Avante does not tip over so quickly and simply looks even better. The optional Wheelie Roller Set in blue rounds the thing off perfectly to the rear. This time, we did the original paintscheme, because the body comes already pre-painted with this kit. But you have to cut it out. And application of the stickers is needed too. The original color scheme can only be called truly brilliant. For those who want to create their own color scheme, there will be an unpainted/clear bodyset available soon.

But no more words now. Enjoy the Comical Avante !

With our Set Up, it´s a blast to drive. And with any doubt, it´s the best performing Tamiya Wheelie/Fun car, we have driven so far.

Upon requests from some of our valued readers. This is a list of genuine Tamiya Hop Up parts, we´ve used on this car:

54924 GF-01 Ball Bearing Set

50808 TG10 Long Wheel Axle

53509 Hard Flourine Coated 0.6 Aluminum Pinion (20T/F201)

54670 Aluminum Oil Damper 4pcs Blue For GF01 WR02

53974 TRF 501 Front Spring Set

54588 GF-01 Aluminum Steering Arm

54586 Lightweight Gear Shaft 5x50mm For GF-01 WR-02 WT-01

51000 Servo Saver Hi Torque Type (Black)

54121 Aluminum Horn for Hi Torque Servo Saver

54473 Aluminum Wheelie Roller Set for WR-02 WR-02G

Takayuki Yamazaki of PDC Designworks talk – Tokyo Communication Art College



A message from hyper designer Kayuki Yamazaki to everyone who aims at this industry. A graduate of our school. Our school teacher. Former Honda Technical Research Institute designer.
Established pdc_designworks in 2012, leveraging the experience of working on hit products such as Ape / zoomer / GROM. A wide field of view and various hobbies are used not only for industrial design centered on car design but also for fashion, models, DJs, consultants, magazine serialization, design education activities for companies, students, etc. Carry out activities. In recent years, we are expanding the range of activities such as customized production, ambassador activities and corporate consulting.
Source: TCACRE YouTube channel

Tamiya President Mr. Shunsaku Tamiya talking about the cancellation of the Shizuoka Hobby Show

The Shizuoka Model Teaching Materials Cooperative officially announced that it will cancel the “59th Shizuoka Hobby Show” scheduled at Twin Messe Shizuoka in Suruga-ku, Shizuoka City in May due to the spread of the new coronavirus.

“I thought of it intensively and its impact. It was a blow to the industry, but many buyers from overseas had to make a quick decision,” said Mr. Shunsaku Tamiya. It is said that cancellation is the first time.
Mr. Tamiya said, “Model makers make new products to match the show and have the highest sales in the year. I still want to do it, but I thought that life should be given priority.”
For the future, “If the situation improves, we can invite suppliers and hold business meetings for each manufacturer.” Next year, we will also expanded the venue to the southern city gymnasium next to Twin Messe Shizuoka, and show that we would enrich the hands-on events.

The Shizuoka Hobby Show is known as one of the largest model fairs in Japan and was expected to be visited by more than 70,000 model lovers and elementary, junior high and high school students again this year.

Source in Japanese language: @S

Guesses and Wishes for Tamiya 2020 Releases


Like at the previous changes of the year

a) which products do you think Tamiya could release this year (static, RC, Mini 4WD, anything else) and

b) which products would you personally like to be released (regardless of if their chances are realistic)?

Feel free to use the comments link at the end of this entry (comments are shown after being checked which can take some hours).

The team of TamiyaBlog sincerely thanks all of you
for our continuously growing community and
wishes everyone a superb new decade
full of joy and health with Tamiya!

A classic renewed – The Tamiya Lunch Box Mini SW-01

Tamiya does not stop to surprise us with innovative products. And we like that very much. The best example for this constant line of news is the Lunch Box Mini SW-01. A really remarkable model that proves that you can have a lot of fun even with small and beautiful looking RC models. Following the success of the T3-01 chassis (Dancing Rider / Dual Rider), Tamiya now continues with a small scale vehicle on four wheels. For this purpose, a classic was reinterpreted. The Lunch Box, a true Tamiya classic we all love. And that surprisingly with 4WD drive. As already known from the T3-01 chassis, the design of the SW-01 is very simple. Even the body is already pre-painted in the familiar yellow, and only needs to be decorated with the well know Lunch Box stickers. As already known from the T3-01, a type 370 engine is also used in the new SW-01 Lunch Box. Also, steering servo and ESC can be used in standard size. No special components are needed. A big advantage. We choose a small Lipo capable Hobbywing ESC, combined with compact size Softcase 3000mAh Lipo for a very long run times.
The new Tamiya Lunch Box Mini offers pure driving pleasure. As known from the T3-01, the vehicle literally lays in the corners. And we also strongly recommend to install the 54898 “Connector Set”, available as a Hop Up part. In order to make the car even more manoeuvrable, the car can be steered even during wheelies.
During the building of our car, all standard plastic bushes were exchanged against ball bearings. A complete set for the SW-01 is already available from Tamiya as Hop Up part number 54900.
We are very happy about this great new chassis. By the way, an unpainted bodyset will soon be available as a Hop Up part, to realize your own creative paintjobs. We will do so. Enjoy the new Tamiya Lunch Box Mini, a new Tamiya classic. Don´t miss it !