Fixing the Weakest Part of the WL Toys 144001 124016 124017 124018 124018 - New metal hubs
The common platform shared by the WL Toys 144001, 144010, 124016, 124017, 124018 and 124019 is a generally robust one but it does tend to have a common weak point - the front hub carrier AKA front wheel seat. I'm happy to say I've found a cheap, strong and well-made metal alternative and in this article I'll show you why they are only now worth getting and of course how to fit them
When you have been lurking around in Facebook groups, RC Groups, Reddit and other forums dedicated to the WL toys cars as long as I have you tend to pick up on common threads, especially when users share their disappointment over broken parts. Sure, individuals drive in different ways which can put certain components at more or less risk but a very common breakage I see is of the plastic front hub carriers. Standard replacement are not expensive but often have to come from China meaning you can be without a running car for up to several weeks. Previously I've looked a metal replacement parts by WL Toys however early designs were more "agricultural" in style and meant the wheels like my favourite Remo P6973 (reviewed here) couldn't be fitted.
In short they are a like for like replacement for the stock plastic units but in aluminium alloy and so are entirely compatible with all of the wheels available to us including the Remo P6973s. Better yet they come with 4 new ball bearings, 4 new collared spigots and 4 new m3 screws with hex head. They are available in blue, silver, red and gold as below
All of the above colours are available here: Wltoys 1/14 144001 124018 124019 Front Wheel Seat Upgrade Metal RC Car Parts - Red
Installation is straightforward - out with the old and in with the new in a direct sway. I'd recommend using the new ball bearing but up to you whether you wish to use old Philips head or new hex head m3 screws. The only screws going into the metal here are the ball ends for the steering tierods and I'd recommend loctite if you have it though it's not especially critical. Click any image to embiggen
Results, Conclusion, Recommendations
The highest praise I can give this upgrade is that day to day I don't notice it, the car runs as normal. In a crash I'd expect it to hold up better and strengthen the weak point of the plastic piece.
All in all a good cheap upgrade with no real downside other than the purchase price which is not high anyway. Nice that it comes with the additional hardware too. I'm happy to recommend this as a good cheap upgrade that addresses probably the most commonly broken piece on these cars.
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2/9/2021 11:18:39 pm
These look great and I will purchase some to try out.
3/9/2021 12:18:22 pm
Yeah they do look pretty good, I might give them a go. TBH though I'd rather have the extra bearings and hardware for the extra dollar or 2.
3/9/2021 12:40:26 pm
Yes definately, these come out a bit more expensive i guess without the extras, you also need to larger LC racing bearings, which i actually find change the feel of the car a bit. Anyway, its all fun to experiment eh!
3/9/2021 12:42:41 pm
Yes you are right, these are a great deal with the extras.
26/10/2021 01:57:59 am
So you would recommend getting the banggood option with bearings instead of the aliexpress option that is meant for LC racing? Isnt the second one better as it will use bigger bearings?
17/3/2022 10:01:27 am
Yeah, but right now those metal AMO knuckles are $7.45 (USD), and the Wltoys metal knuckles are staying stubbornly at $17. I did find the metal Wltoys knuckles on Amazon and Walmart for less than $14. For me, if I had to choose between the $17 Wltoys knuckles and the $7.45 AMO knuckles, and both were on, say, Amazon for that price, I'd probably go with the AMO knuckles mainly because they are less than half the cost of the Wltoys knuckles. I could buy the AMOs, then buy metal front casters blocks or metal rear hub carriers (on sale) for the price of the Wltoys knuckles.
5/9/2021 08:33:27 am
I purchased a pair on Amazon and it was only a bit more costly than ordering from China. They are excellent!
5/9/2021 09:12:56 am
Hey john, got a link for those on amazon?
11/10/2021 03:33:30 am
I just had a front bushing and screw pop out of my 124018. To begin with, even if you're using stock steering parts, referring to owner's manual on page 10, it shows the bushings mounted so the flange is to the inside. On mine, the flange was to the outside and it popped right out. The drawings show the bushings, but don't call them out. They are in the list in the back and are 1294 and 1295. They are different lengths, so, different numbers. One side of mine had the longer one on the bottom and the other side the longer one on top. I could only find those parts at WLToys RC.com. They were going to be the same price as the aluminum parts shown here - with the bushings, bearings and screws, so, it was a no brainer. By the time they get here, the season will be over, but, that's OK.
19/10/2021 04:24:02 pm
Yeah, I stuffed up the location of the bushings at first and wondered why my steering was binding, I'm glad they are included on this set. Get some of those big soft tyres I reviewed recently, they should go well in the snow ;)
19/10/2021 11:24:53 pm
Yes, that sounds like a good idea.
17/3/2022 10:05:26 am
So in the end, you're supposed to put the flange/bushing thing in so that the "flanged" side faces the inside, aka facing toward the CVD joint, so that the screw is on the top of the knuckle, and the flange being on the opposite "side" of the metal knuckle? In other words, opposite of the incorrectly positioned pictures of the bushing that Quad provided (to show the wrong orientation)?
16/10/2021 12:50:04 am
I ordered the set from Banggood, which I don't see the link to here:
19/10/2021 04:25:20 pm
Yep these are the right ones. I think the WL CVDs work with the LC racing hubs and bearing but there is a bit of play side to side.
19/10/2021 11:28:28 pm
In that case, the thicker bearings (0.5MM wider) will help.
23/10/2021 12:47:18 am
I have recently received my parts from Banggood - much sooner than expected! There was no US warehouse choice, so, I expected a very long wait. For some reason, the plastic bag the parts came in had a New Jersey address. Their US warehouse is in California, so, I don't know what's going on, but am grateful it wasn't the typical looooong shipping.
27/10/2021 12:26:24 pm
Who know's what kinda 3PL setup they have. Every time I have a delivery to New Zealand it seems to come from somewhere different. Glad yours came quick. Surprised your screws were the wrong size, QA is not their strong suit but at least you can reuse stock ones. Hope they work well for you.
18/6/2022 06:45:13 am
Hi there, thank you very much for all the content you write. Your site is the main reference for WLToy cars.
29/6/2022 05:42:07 pm
Casting doesn't look good I'm afraid. I can only vouch for the ones I used at the link in the article as there are so many variations
18/6/2022 07:15:10 am
The parts should be fine as long as the QC makes sure the fits work. While you’re on there, consider getting the LC Racing shock and body mounts so you can put their truggy body on yours ( the truggy is slightly longer and fits the 124018 chassis nicely). Imagine taking off two clips instead of 12 screws! Pictures on mine are on RC Group in the Mod thread for the WLToys off road vehicles.
29/8/2022 05:45:23 am
How does it go with full metal upgrade kit? thx
29/8/2022 11:12:20 am
It makes it weaker and heavier. Really if you just want to sit it on the shelf and look at it.
29/8/2022 07:27:21 am
You need the LC Racing shock and body mounts to use their body on the 124018/ 124016 because the WLToys version has no body or rear shock mounts to work with. The typical metal upgrade kit uses slightly smaller ( stock) bearings.
28/10/2022 03:44:55 pm
We appreciate you mentioning that we advise using new ball bearings, but it is entirely up to you whether you prefer to use new hex-head M3 screws or old Philips head screws. According to my father, he needs a bolt to connect his machines at the shop. I'll locate a distributor of hex-head bolts that provides a range of bolts for him to use.
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