Category Archives: Opinions

Tamiya Mini 4WD Setup Guide – Enhanced Version by Max Li

Our loyal reader Max Li was kind enough to extend the Official Tamiya Mini 4WD Setup Guide we posted recently with his own tips and experience and send them to us:

Motor and gear
Depending on track type, if it is a:
– Technical with few jumps and etc. (Lots of long straights)
You can use a high speed gear ratio 3:5:1/3:7:1 with speed motors like Atomic Tuned ->Light Dash -> Hyper Dash -> Sprint dash
And etc.
– Technical track (Tight corners, lots of wave, lots of jump)
Acceleration ratio of 4:1, 4:2:1, 5:1 with torque focus motor like torque tuned. Motors like Hyper dash you can tap on it’s torque by using a bigger ration of 4:1 and etc.
*For pro chassis only 4:1 gear ratio

Tire size
Many want the fastest Mini 4WD so they use large diameter.
However large diameter is not suitable for tracks with lots of jump.
Since the car height is further from the track.
Large Diameter – High speed courses with only 4:1/4:2:!/5:1 gear supported
(Suitable for tracks with No jumps) *Lots of optional tire
Low profile (New type of tire design) – High speed courses with only 3:5:1/3:7:1 gear supported (Suitable for tracks with few jumps)
*Lots of optional tire
Small Diameter tire – Technical based tire (Found in VS, MS Chassis, Super X/XX car kits) All gear ratio are supported.
*No optional tire
Small Diameter racing slick tires (Early Mini 4WD tires (Found in Super 1 onwards car kits) – All purpose tire depending on gear.
All gear ratio are supported.
*Limited/rare optional tire

Bearing parts
For rollers, best to use bearing type of rollers so the machine can zip in track easily. Here is a tip many may not know.
For tracks with lots of jump, if you are using bearing on the wheel shaft.
If the car keeps flying off, it doesn’t always mean putting on more weight. You can remove the bearing on the wheel or just a pair of two ball bearing at either the front or rear.
This will helps to slow down the vehicle thus jumping off the track will be minimize.

Tire/Roller size
Roller and tire size fundamentals are the same
Bigger the tire/roller, it is focus on speed settings and speed track.
Small the tire/roller, it is focus on cornering and technical track.
– Three Point roller setup for older chassis Super 1/2/FM and etc.
Setup no need always be double roller, you can explore three point roller setting.
Meaning on roller in the nose, middle and tail of the chassis.

Tire grip
Only large diameter have many optional tires since this is the widely used tire diameter. Low profile there are optional tires but in some countries there are no soft/hard.
Small diameter and small diameter racing tires wise no optional tire at all
Soft – High grip for high speed tracks, slow on cornering since the tire grips on the track surface very hard
Not suitable for jumps as the tire is bouncy.
Hard – Low grip suitable for technical tracks, fast on corner and speed is not affected. (I recommend using hard than soft tire)
Suitable for jumps as the tire is not bouncy.
Offset tires – Cone shaped type of tires, the tire only have 2mm contact. Very fast on corner and outperform modified tires.
Suitable for tracks with many corners, however speed and stability isn’t’ that great so not ideal for high speed tracks
One way wheel (Rare/Outdated) – All rounder type of tire regardless of tire type whether soft or hard. These are mechanic type of tire.
Speed and corner are very good, since these tires have inner wheel. During corners, the tires will not be drag so the car can corner very easily.
However such tires are not ideal for jumps as the mechanism will get crash after some time of usage.
Reston Sponge (Rare/outdated) – All rounder tire, good grip and easy on corner. Light weight as compare with rubber tires.
Suitable for high speed tires.
Most early Mini 4WD have reston sponge as optional tire.
However not ideal for jumps as the tire is really bouncy.

How to handle jumps
Brakes and jumps are only some methods to handle jumps.
There are other things to take note such as:
– Motor used, if you are using sprint dash for jump.
Try changing to a slower motor
– Gear ratio, try using acceleration ratio of 4:1 and above but no 3:5:! gear for jumps
– Tire, large diameters are not suitable for jumps as the car height is very high. Try changing to small diameter tire.
* Such tires can only be obtained through kits like VS, MS chassis
or Super 1/2 onwards car kits with small diameter car kits

Brake types
– sponge brakes are great for high speed tracks but not climbs.
For some they use tape on sponge brake so it will not brake on climb.
– Rubber brakes all rounder brake for climbs and speed tracks.
Tip for rubber brakes is make it pointy so it touches the arc of the jump section. *Refer to TAM15198 you will understand what I am talking about.

Damper placement
For damper to work properly and correct the vehicle during jumps.
Recommend to place a damper set in front and one in the rear.
Middle damper even in the early days of Mini 4WD are not effective in anywhere so middle damper only helps to hold down the vehicle than correct the vehicle during jumps.
Take note do not use a pair heavy mass damper as the car will bounce off track during jumps. Mass damper block performs better than standard damper drums but do not use the heavier one.
Take note not all car you can place mass damper block in front.
Let me just share that mass damper is not intended to hold down the vehicle but to correct it.
Refer to the instruction of part TAM15392 you will understand what I am talking about.

Car width
Wider the front/rear of the car give more stability as well as cornering.
There are parts like side extension (TAM15230 *Rare, TAM15357).
Basically these are long reach type of FRP, they touch the track wall very closely.
Very suitable for technical tracks and cornering is superb.
However if the track have many tight corners, you might want to explore smaller car width than wide.
Either remove FRP or use FRP with no roller size limitation like 15150/15242. (If the chassis supports it)
Such FRP are from Mini 4WD early days, such FRP are useful since you can put almost any roller size.
If you feel your car is stuck in tight corners, install such FRP than with a smaller roller size like 13mm and smaller.
I use such setting to tackle very tricky courses using chassis like Super 1/TX and VS are a few older chassis that supports such FRP.

Explore sliding damper part and damper grease
FRP is the most popular among all the racers.
Sliding damper part TAM15198/15467.
Tip from me sliding part always put in rear than front.
Most don’t use siding damper as they feel it is slow.
Why is it slow is because the grease included in the part is a soft grease which is meant for low speed.
You need to purchase TAMIYA HG Sliding damper grease 15471.
For high speed use hard, for technical track use soft.
Such part no one have even explore or use.
Sliding damper usually have a aluminium plate which add as weight to hold on the vehicle.
Same concept with some who place weight in the rear.
Don’t worry about jumps, just place a damper in front of the car not the middle and the car can cope with jumps.
Last but not least, try to explore all the optional parts like what I did.
There simply a lot of parts for Mini 4WD other than FRP, metal rollers and etc.
Some rare/older parts are helpful in certain track conditions.
Example TAM15176 which helps Mini 4WD to corner smoothly since the arm slides along the track so the car will not get stuck in corners.

Hope this helps and enjoy.
Max Li
Mini 4WD tester and collector

Guesses and Wishes for Tamiya 2018 Releases

TAMIYA 2018 ?

Like at the previous changes of the year

a) which products do you think Tamiya could release this year (static, RC, mini, 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 thanks for the ever growing
reader base and support and wishes everyone a fantastic 2018!

Some thoughts about the new release of the Tamiya 16042 Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin 1/6 Big Scale Kit

Like every year, the Team of Tamiyablog reported live from the Nuremberg Toy Fair. But this year was a bit special, because 2017 marks Tamiya´s 50th consecutive year of attendance here in Nuremberg.

Tamiya celebrated this Anniversary with a new kit of the 1/6 Big Scale Motorcycle series. The beautiful Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin, including stunning details like metal damper parts and complex spoke pattern of the wheels which were the best we have ever seen. Also an highly detailed metal chain set was presented as a special detail-up part which takes the model to a new level.

It was so good to see that Tamiya is still engineering these big and expensive kits in a time where the market for static model plastic kits is not so big anymore as it was in the 1970´s and 80´s.

I was feeling like a kid again when I saw the new Honda. Like it was in 1979, when i first saw the Big Scale kit of the Tamiya Honda CB750 Four No. 16001 in the showcase of my local hobby shop.

This has something to do with, how should I call it, maybe „stability“ in a way we like it.

Highlighted should be here the classic box art picture too which is a piece of art for itself. We are all big fans of the classic box arts, and we can say that is one of the very best we have ever seen. Especially from the artistic value.

Tamiya is the last company who still produces these big scale cars and motorcycle kits in an unmatched quality, and we hope they will do it in the future. That should be said.

Thank you TAMIYA

Living great times – the Tamiya re-re-releases


Tamiya plastic model factory Shimbashi just posted some photos of the Boomerang “reprint” of the re-release version as well as some other re-releases offered and this made us think how great actually the current times are for us classic Tamiya RC kit fans, we can just go to our hobby shop and admire and buy any of them like as if we were a teenager in the glorious 1980s again. 15 years ago that was a so far away dream, a group of us was thinking how great it would be and were even so excited about something now comparably so unspectacular like the re-release of the BMW E30 M3 Schnitzer body on the TT-01 chassis and now we can buy legendary kits like the Sand Scorcher, Bruiser and Avante New In Box anytime and anywhere! Funnily some still complain either about kit XXX not re-released yet or too many re-releases, well that’s human nature. We can only repeat, thank you so much TAMIYA for making this dream come true!

One week till the Nuremberg Toy Fair Spielwarenmesse 2017 – Tamiyablog Online Poll

Exactly one week left from the biggest toy fair in the world, the Nuremberg Toy Fair Spielwarenmesse 2017, from which we will report live like every year on the news from our beloved model company, Tamiya.

To match even better your needs in getting information as quickly as possible we have prepared just a single question poll which would kindly ask you to follow, its just a couple of seconds and does not need any registration. The question is only about where the live news will be posted first, our website or our facebook site, as a bit later anyway both will be “synchronized”.

Tamiyablog Online Poll

By the way our reports are not just the usual new official item lists and catalogue photos which anyway mostly leak already before the show. We try to encapture and share you the feeling of this great celebration and excitement of our hobby.

Thank you for your support and hope you enjoy our efforts.
The team of tamiyablog.com

Guesses and Wishes for Tamiya 2017 Releases

TAMIYA 2017 ?

Like at the previous changes of the year

a) which products do you think Tamiya could release this year (static, RC, mini, 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.com thanks for the ever growing
reader base and support and wishes everyone a fantastic 2017!

40 – 30 = 10 Years Tamiyablog Anniversary

10-years-tamiyablog

In September 2006, when the 30th anniversary Tamiya RC Porsche 934 (#49400, with Valliant scheme and TA05 based chassis) was announced, we started this fan website/blog as a place to gather interesting Tamiya related news and articles. Now, exactly 10 years later, Tamiya released their 40th anniversary RC Porsche 934 (#84431, with Jägermeister scheme and TA02SW chassis) and we have come quite some way from there.

In this period we have posted 941 articles, have had more than 4.000.000 visits and 2000 reader comments in our website and more than 6000 fans in our much later started Facebook page. We have reported live 9 times from Nuremberg Toy fair, presented a couple of dozens of our customized builds and organised an award competition for our readers. Our long term target is to be complete and easily searchable database of older and newest Tamiya related news and articles which disappear in the long run from other websites. We pay to run this site fully on our behalf since we didn’t want to clutter it with ads and also so that Tamiya stays what it always meant to us, a hobby and passion and not a business.

Since Tamiya had released their Bigwig (#58057) in 1986 to celebrate their 10th anniversary of RC, it couldn’t miss in our little 10 years celebration, as also a little self made cake (please excuse our poor cake decorating abilities, thankfully our Tamiya builds and reports are bit better). The biggest change though is the new responsive design of our website which we hope you will find easier to read, also at mobile devices.

A big thank you to all our readers, supporters, members and Tamiya who made us what we are today!

To the next 10 years,
The team of Tamiyablog

Guesses and Wishes for Tamiya 2016 Releases

TAMIYA 2016 ?

As in the previous years

a) which products do you think Tamiya could release this year (static, RC, mini, 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.com thanks repeatedly for the continuously growing
reader base and support and wishes everyone a superb 2016!

Guesses and Wishes for Tamiya 2015 Releases

TAMIYA 2015 ?

As in the previous years

a) which products do you think Tamiya could release this year (static, RC, mini, 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.com thanks repeatedly for the continuously growing
reader base and support and wishes everyone a superb 2015!

The Tamiya 54519 CC-01 Stroke Extension Link – a very useful Hop Up

CC01_Extension_Link 011

The CC-01/XC is still one of the most popular Tamiya chassis of all time due to it´s very scale look. A lot of different body types were released since. The latest car is the beautiful Toyota FJ Cruiser. But due to it´s age, the chassis has some downsides. We happily noticed the release of the CC-01 Extension Link last year and a nice CC-01 Aluminum damper set. The new extension link kit helps to give the rear axle of the CC-01 a lot more travel while climbing over obstacles. We´ve installed the kit to our trusty tamiyablog Mercedes Unimog and tested it on rough terrain. The extension links itself are made of high quality black anodized aluminum with integrated ball bearings. Too make it short, it works so much better than the standard setup. The car benefits a lot. But see yourself. The tamiyablog team hope for more CC-01 Hop Ups in the future. Maybe a ballraced steering kit to reduce the play in the steering linkage ?