The WL Toys 124019 is a small and fast car out of the box - it'll do 55km/h on the old technology brushed motor that comes stock out of the box. For bashing and off-road I prefer to upgrade with physically smaller and more efficient brushless motors but if straight-line on road speed is your objective as is the case here, then using a 3650 sized motor can get you massive speed... there are many examples where this car can go well over 100mph. The objective of my build here is to see what kind of speed I can get without pushing the budget or modifications too far - bolt in parts, stock body and a car than is as reliable as stock and can easily be converted back.
For this build I've chosen the WL Toys 124019 which is a long-wheelbase version of the popular 144001. The reasons this car makes for a good speed run build is:
Let's get on to the build which I have broken down into sections. We'll start with the powertrain which most of you are here for but I'll also cover important lessons in wheel/tyre choice, suspension set up, aero, speed measurement and driving technique. Read on for more
Now that I've finished my review of the new WL Toys 104001 4wd 1/10 scale RC buggy it's clear that this is nowhere near as fast as the earlier 124018/124019 and 144001 models which uses essentially the same electronics. In this article I look at how easier it is to close this speed gap and the theory around it.
My recent guide on upgrading the 144001, 124018 and 124019 with a drop in 2445 5400kv made for a very fast car but also generated a lot of heat for the motor and ESC. In this guide I have a brief look on the impact of adjusting ESC timing on power output as measured by speed and the resulting change in heat of motor and ESC plus efficiency.
Most cheap ESCs, notably the Surpass/Racerstar are impressive in that there is some basic ability to programme the ESC for throttle punch, dead band, low voltage cut off plus braking and reverse as you can see in this guide. Step up to a more premium ESC like the hobbywing 16BL30 and 10BL120 as recommended in my brushless guide and amongst other items you also have the ability to adjust motor timing.
The WL Toys 144001 is a great car for the money and pretty durable but certainly not the toughest thing out - for my money that goes to the SG 1601 / HBX 16889 (long term review here). I have however found an tested a few direct bolt on parts that you can install in about 20 minutes to make this way more resilient to crashes than stock
By now I've made a number of brushless upgrades to the WL Toys 144001 which I've documented, each with a different objective in mind. All of these offer an improvement over stock which, depending on option offer an improvement of speed, acceleration, weight, balance and efficiency over stock. The objective of this brushless upgrade is simple - the cheapest brushless setup worth having for bashing
Another article from QuadifyRC.com's good friend Geoffrey Chan following on from his comprehensive Vinyl wrapping guide. If you're on Facebook, pop over to the QuadifyRC group to discuss here with Geoffrey and myself
Let me start off by saying that the WLToys 124018 is one of the coolest looking 1/12 scale RC cars on the market. I have been a big fan of desert truck/buggy body styles for some time. Larger scale trucks like the Losi Tenacity and Losi Lasernut have always caught my eye, but the cost and lack of a place to run something that large have kept them off my buy list. The 124018 or the LC Racing EMB-DT/Tacon Cavalry that it is a clone of fit in a sweet spot of a portable size, an affordable price point with heaps of potential for tuning, upgrades and customization.
The 124018 out of the box is far from perfect - check out the QuadifyRC review here. The tried and tested 550 brushed motor and combined ESC/receiver combo have been thoroughly discussed by the 144001 community. In the larger scale platform and full body cage, this car is weighted like a tank. I would have gone with the original LC Racing EMB-DT, but to get one delivered would cost 3x the price of a 124018, which I had a hard time justifying. So, I decided I should just get the 124018 and use the savings to customize and modify it to my personal preference. At the same time, I wanted to see if I could come close to or exceed the performance of the LC Racing EMB-DT but on a smaller budget. So here I start my project to build my WLCRacing 124018 and will compare how my incremental improvements affect things like weight, speed, and overall handling of the car.
Target Weight: Equivalent to LC Racing EMB-DT RTR Weight – 1200g with battery (according to LC Racing site)
WL toys have had a series of hits with the 1/14 scale 144001 and now more recently with the 1/12 scale 124019 and 124018 - same car just a little longer. In order to hit their price point though they have had to compromise on the power train - opting for brushed motor technology that although surprisingly fast offers poor long term durability and even worse efficiency leading short running times. Upgrading to brushless is a solid option but has required hacks and workarounds in the past to get anything other than basic speed run builds. This new guide aims to be drop in solution with no mechanical modification required.
Just to recap I've already made 3 brushless builds. If you have the ability I still highly rate the ultimate brushless upgrade as I believe the motor and gear combination is perfect for fast, reliable and efficient 2s running.
DumboRC have a range of very similar 2.4GHz digital surface radios (for RC car and boats) with subtle differences which makes them confusing to buy. All of them around around the $30 mark which makes them extremely good value if you know how to pick the right set of features for you. In this guide/review I'll break down the differences and review the two variants that I recommend - namely the DumboRC X6 2.4G 6CH Transmitter and DumboRC X6A 2.4G 6CH Transmitter with X6FG Receiver and will of course review them and give you my recommendations.
The WL Toys 144001 is a very fast little 1/14 scale RC car thanks to it's massive 550 brushless motor that powers it with some rather tall gearing. The downside to this is the heat that it generates. Over time this heat can damage electronics and cause a decrease in performance and indeed motor failure. This is a quick and dirty guide to significantly improve motor cooling for less than $2 which should only take 5-10 minutes to do with simple tools.
The WL Toys 144001 is a small 1/14 scale 4wd buggy with a massively oversized brushed motor that can reach well over 30mph. When this massive brushed motor is replaced with a massive brushless motor the top speed can become over triple that with the right setup. The below guide goes into detail the build components I used for such a build, the build process and setup to optimise handling.
By now you've probably seen some wild speed run builds based on the WL toys 144001 of up to and over 100mph. At the top end of the scale these are highly customised with expensive race-oriented gear and outboard twin-battery power supply. The objective of my build was stealth: to retain the stock look, making everything fit (somewhat tightly) under the stock bodyshell and be bolt-on without the need for machining or fabrication i.e. as simple to replicate as possible. For this reason I have specifically chosen to run my car with stock gearing on 2-3s only. To that end here are the parts I chose and why,
Parts used for build:
I've separated this into power system for the key components...