What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

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What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  Controversy on Sun 27 Apr - 21:42

I have been kind of on the fence for sometime about this one. (So decided to move this discussion from the Race Reports thread to a more appropriate place.)

The itch has started and it's in desperate need of scratching. I'd like to purchase a FWD touring car chassis, but in no hurry either. (This one will be my last...)

My questions go to all FWD owners as I am looking for hands on advice.

Not being the biggest supported class (but would appear to be growing), I have seen that I have several choices for a FWD chassis ranging from entry level/beginner to high end/expert. Prices ranging from about R2,000.00 to R4,5000.00 give or take. To Sammy, the only top end I will consider is the 3Racing Sakura FF2014 going for $249.00 excl. shipping and customs. (Man it's a beauty!)

I'm definitely no top class R/C car driver, but I do get a lot of enjoyment out of the hobby - even if I don't come 1st, 2nd or 3rd. Don't see myself going much further than TRCCC or much more than racing at club level around the peninsula. I'd prefer something slightly above entry level. Not really a fan of second hand, so will most likely be going for a new out the box purchase.

So far I feel that the Tamiya FF-03R is my best bet. Moulded chassis with aluminium bits, some carbon and Tamiya's TRF shocks (which I am very happy with on my TT) - this is stock out the box.

Questions:


  1. FF-03/FF-03 Pro or FF-03R owners; how does one go about setting up the chassis? I noticed that there are three wheelbase options, L-257mm, M-245mm and S-233mm. Never driven a FWD before, so I am unaware of how this effects the handling. Would it be the same as with a 4WD touring car?
  2. Now on to suspension. Shock oil weights and spring stiffness - same as a 4WD touring car or different?
  3. Gear diff filled with oil. No experience with this whatsoever, so how does one go about this. What weight oil in the diff does what to the way the car handles?
  4. Running gear. Only two wheels putting the power to the ground, so what's a good option? 17.5 boosted or 13.5 blinky/fixed timing? (Which puts less stress on the battery/motor/esc?)
  5. Gearing? Neville cleared this one up already. (SARDA rules for 2014 have been downloaded already.)
  6. Body? Another Neville has cleared up for me but any opinions are welcome.
  7. Ride height F/R? Same as a 4WD touring car?
  8. Left anything out, let me know?

Looking forward to your guys input as always.

Hope you all having a sweet long weekend!

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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  Controversy on Sun 27 Apr - 21:48

skillz wrote:The R is so freeking cool!

I really enjyed building this car but what is even better is driving it!

What a pleasure! With standard kit setup! What a dream!

Dug up from an older thread.

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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  SammyD on Wed 30 Apr - 20:11

Controversy wrote:
skillz wrote:The R is so freeking cool!

I really enjyed building this car but what is even better is driving it!

What a pleasure! With standard kit setup! What a dream!

Dug up from an older thread.
Lol, I'm sure his opinion has changed since then, but he can answer that one.
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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  Controversy on Thu 1 May - 12:24

SammyD wrote:
Lol, I'm sure his opinion has changed since then, but he can answer that one.
No need, as I know he no longer races that particular chassis. Now it's VBC, Serpent (which is sold) and probably one other.

I'd really like to get a top end, but chassis alone has quite a hefty price tag. Having a top end and putting in entry level electronics and radio gear is pointless - again, top of range electrics costs a pretty penny... if I was to compete at national level, then I'd probably get a top end and do it just once. Only reason I am interested in a FWD touring car is for Coastal Cup as I'd like to do it, probably only once.

If Banzai Hobby doesn't restock their FF-03R chassis kit, I might just forget the whole idea.

In the meantime, what are good gearing options for a 13.5 turn brushless combo in a FF-03? (SARDA's maximum gearing for the FF-03 is: "Tamiya FF03/FF03 Pro - only a 64P 47T pinion and 78T spur gear OR a 48P 40T pinion 66T spur gear, only the standard idler gear and standard counter gear will be permitted.")

Sounds like I'll be a bit over-geared for TRCCC, what are guys that race their FF-03's running?

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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  Jupman on Thu 1 May - 18:08

Parow guys are running 96 Spur with 45 Pinion.  That's the same gearing that Jaco ran when he raced with us that one night.

I am running 96 Spur with 43 Pinion and I am slightly quicker with that gearing than I am with 45 pinion.

On the last FWD evening, we chatted with Neville and we geared Kevin's FF to an almost identical rollout to Nevilles.  Kev ran an 88 Spur and 49 Pinion (Should have been a 50 pinion, but we didn't have any on us on the night).

My lap times compared with Kevin's we almost identical.  On the night though, Kevin just pipped me into 3rd placed.  It seems like that's the way to go gearing wise on our track.  I have ordered a spur and 50 pinions and will put it in my car and see how I go.  Bear in mind though, Kev and I are running the 14T Tamiya Combo and not a 13.5 setup.

This gearing was recommended to Neville from guys running the 14T combo apparently.  They find that using this gearing the car is just as competitive as 13.5

I do believe, after running TA05v2 in GT and Club Stock that, on our track, the lower you gear you gear your car the better the laptimes (obviously it's all relative).  Also, I have seen that in those two classes so far - A 90 Spur is faster than a 96 spur.

Honestly though, I am still trying to understand gearing - for me, it's about testing and comparing laptimes all the time.

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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  Jupman on Thu 1 May - 18:12

Controversy wrote:

  1. Body? Another Neville has cleared up for me but any opinions are welcome.


Just about the whole world say VW Scirocco.
I have it and enjoy it.
I also have the Subaru Impreza - and I actually get better laptimes with that.

Kevin is running the Honda Civic and seems happy with it - but has bought a Subaru Impreza for his next body.

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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  Controversy on Thu 1 May - 19:29

Jupman wrote:
Just about the whole world say VW Scirocco.
I have it and enjoy it.
I also have the Subaru Impreza - and I actually get better laptimes with that.

Kevin is running the Honda Civic and seems happy with it - but has bought a Subaru Impreza for his next body.

I'll bear all this in mind. Looking for something with rounder edges on the front end, as I notice that they don't crack as easily.

My creative senses are now tingling.

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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  Controversy on Thu 1 May - 19:40

Jupman wrote:Parow guys are running 96 Spur with 45 Pinion.  That's the same gearing that Jaco ran when he raced with us that one night.

Thanks for this info, will keep it in mind so I know where to start or what to aim for later on.

Jupman wrote:I am running 96 Spur with 43 Pinion and I am slightly quicker with that gearing than I am with 45 pinion.

What about motor temps with this gearing after five minutes? (Trying to figure out if one can gear even higher or if the motor is at its limit.)

Jupman wrote:Parow guys are running 96 Spur with 45 Pinion.  That's the same gearing that Jaco ran when he raced with us that one night.

I am running 96 Spur with 43 Pinion and I am slightly quicker with that gearing than I am with 45 pinion.

On the last FWD evening, we chatted with Neville and we geared Kevin's FF to an almost identical rollout to Nevilles.  Kev ran an 88 Spur and 49 Pinion (Should have been a 50 pinion, but we didn't have any on us on the night).

My lap times compared with Kevin's we almost identical.  On the night though, Kevin just pipped me into 3rd placed.  It seems like that's the way to go gearing wise on our track.  I have ordered a spur and 50 pinions and will put it in my car and see how I go.  Bear in mind though, Kev and I are running the 14T Tamiya Combo and not a 13.5 setup.

This gearing was recommended to Neville from guys running the 14T combo apparently.  They find that using this gearing the car is just as competitive as 13.5

Just want to be in the same ball park as the rest, as in Club Stock I was standing still going down the straight. Same sort of thing with Stock TT but I have a Tamiya ESC on the way, hoping this resolves my loss of power issue. I have a feeling that my LRP speedo was defective from day one.

Jupman wrote:I do believe, after running TA05v2 in GT and Club Stock that, on our track, the lower you gear you gear your car the better the laptimes (obviously it's all relative).  Also, I have seen that in those two classes so far - A 90 Spur is faster than a 96 spur.

Honestly though, I am still trying to understand gearing - for me, it's about testing and comparing laptimes all the time.

I am sure there's a fine line between over-gearing ones' car and having it slightly under-geared as well.

Still have so much to learn... but once I have learnt it, I can move onto new things that I need to learn. So far my car building and setup seem quite good. Gearing is my main focus now and I can see it's different for everyone - all depends on driving style, track layout and motor temps.

Thanks again for taking the time for clearing things up.

Appreciated!

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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  Jupman on Fri 2 May - 16:30

No issues with motor temps at all yet.  Spoke to Jaco as well and he says that the brushless can function optimally at a much higher temp.

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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  skillz on Fri 2 May - 17:59

Controversy wrote:
skillz wrote:The R is so freeking cool!

I really enjyed building this car but what is even better is driving it!

What a pleasure! With standard kit setup! What a dream!

Dug up from an older thread.

Out of all the tamiya FWD kits available the FF03 R is definitely the one to go for.

Build was a very good, enjoyable build(I have obviously moved on now and experienced other brands).

The hoppups included in the kit is all the necessary ones needed.

I build the hole car according to the manual and it worked like a dream.

I would advice a 3000 diff oil and work from there depending on how u want ur car.

13.5 on blinky is more than enough and systems are cheaper than tamiya 14t if u buying new.

The only hop up I would do on the ff03 R is get the metal cross pin for the diff.
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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  Controversy on Fri 2 May - 21:14

skillz wrote:Out of all the tamiya FWD kits available the FF03 R is definitely the one to go for.

Build was a very good, enjoyable build(I have obviously moved on now and experienced other brands).

The hoppups included in the kit is all the necessary ones needed.

I build the hole car according to the manual and it worked like a dream.

I would advice a 3000 diff oil and work from there depending on how u want ur car.

But the statement stands true at that particular point in time. Plus, I'm on no level to get a top end machine and I would prefer something with more affordable replacement parts.

Something I quite like on the Tamiya FF-03 is the sealed gear case, which means less grit to destroy ones' gears. TRCCC is very dusty...

I'll go with the 3000 diff oil as you recommend - what can one expect with this specific oil? On/off throttle, corner entry, mid corner and corner exit? (Assuming there's a reasonable level of grip/traction.)

skillz wrote:13.5 on blinky is more than enough and systems are cheaper than tamiya 14t if u buying new.

Going with Speed Passion. Reventon Stock Club Race speedo and their Competition V3.0 13.5 turn brushless sensored motor with fixed endbell timing.

Probably going to set me back around R1,200.00 incl. postage and customs. I have the program box already, which is another reason I am leaning towards Speed Passion - plus I am happy with the same 21.5 turn combo in my Club Stock car.

skillz wrote:The only hop up I would do on the ff03 R is get the metal cross pin for the diff.

Will definitely go this route. Was thinking of getting metal gears for the gear diff as well?

Thanks again for the tips.

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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  Controversy on Fri 2 May - 21:22

Jupman wrote:No issues with motor temps at all yet.  Spoke to Jaco as well and he says that the brushless can function optimally at a much higher temp.

Okay, so that's good news. Would prefer to have the 13.5 turn not work too hard and prolong its lifespan.

PS: One can gear even higher... I'm getting tempted to start gearing my cars closer to a FDR of 4 and even lower as my TC4 which I use for Club Stock is at a FDR of 5 with its current 66/33 gearing.

Some of the chassis material needs to be removed to install larger pinion gears according to the supplied Instruction Manual. (My 21.5 turn is barely warm after 5 minutes with this gearing, plus I have a fan and heatsink on the way and I am quite comfortable with its current speed - but only on its next rebuild will I venture down this path.)

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Re: What FWD touring car chassis is a good bet?

Post  skillz on Sat 3 May - 22:39

I wouldn't recommend metal inner gears for the diff....
Plastic is perfectly fine.
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