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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