The WL toys brushed 104001 and brushless 104002 are true 1/10 scale 4wd buggies and their size and weight add to their handling performance. Sadly though their tyres are overly soft which would be good for a lighter car like the 124019 but on these big heavy cars the tread pattern deflects so provide poor grip and fast wear. In this review I'll be looking at alternative buggy wheels to find a good looking off-road alternative that is easy to find.
I've reviewed both of these cars and in general find them to be pretty good but if you want more detail check out my full review of the cheaper brushed 104001 and the faster, more efficient brushless 104002. As I mentioned above, both have good wheels and a good tread pattern but have a tyre compound that is just to soft for a car of this weight. In this review I have looked at the this staggered buggy wheel and tyre set that costs less than $20 (actually $14 on flash sale at time of writing. They are available in 5 colour sets as you can see below
Included in the set is a pair of front and rear tyres with foam inserts, a pair of front and rear wheels (12mm hex size), 4 x nylock wheel nuts and a wheel nut too. Note: they tyres are not glued
Gluing the tyres.
First you'll need to glue 4 tyres to the 4 rims. Make sure you match the narrower front tyres with the narrower front rims and same for the rears. Tread pattern is not directional so no need to worry about that. See below for my guide on how to glue the tyres. I use the cheapest, nastiest multipack superglue I can find. I don't see a lot of difference with the premium tyre glue, it is the same CA compound.
A closer look at the wheels and tyres.
Being a standard 12mm hex these wheels bolt straight on to these cars. They have a little less offset that the stock wheels so don't stand out quite as wide but the difference is minor and won't hurt handling for bashing. It's noticeable that the plastic on the wheel is thinner on the new wheels - you can see much more thread behind the wheel nut with these wheels - worth considering when we look at durability.
See the extra expose thread on the hub shaft? That means the wheel plastic is thinner
The the wheels themselves are slightly higher in diameter 85mm vs 80mm . They are also a little wider than the stock wheels both front and rear. Rather than me trying to explain, check out the images below which tell more of a story, especially the last image that shows how much more presence these new wheels have compared to stock.
This picture illustrates the actual presence of the newer wheels - bigger, wider and much more aggressive in tread
They look great
Before we get to the performance review I just wanted to say that these wheels look fantastic. I have always preferred black wheels on RC buggies but the little bit of extra diameter and width suit this car so much better as does the more interesting spoke pattern on the wheels.
Definitely more grip in practically all offroad conditions that the stock and the extra height in the side walls helps them soak up small bumps too. They still balloon a but so if you want to run 3s I'd recommend laying some duct tape on the inside of the tyres before you glue them. I found them best in dirt or loose gravel and although they go well in short grass, they are still inferior to monster truck tyres in the conditions much tougher than than. Unlike monster truck tyres through they are cheap and don't put unnecessary pressure on your drive line and power train. It's fair to say that right across the board though they are superior to the stock wheels and tyres.
I do not recommend these for road surfaces though because they are still relatively soft and can traction roll depending on you suspension setup. Ballooning at 3s and above will make them difficult to control too. If you are looking for a road wheel I'd recommend waiting for the Wltoys 104072 wheels to become more readily available.
Wear and Durability
These tyres are slightly harder than the stock ones, are wide and have a more agressive tread pattern so will wear better but the stock ones. With that said it's a fairly low bar for measuring wear and these ones will wear reasonably quickly, especially on harder surfaces. Still, they are not expensive and for the grip they offer I feel it is worth it. I tend to avoid harder surfaces on these wheels where possible.
Straight up, the wheels themselves are not as strong as the stock ones. Solid disc wheels are always more durable and having less plastic in general make these weaker. I am not a hard basher so mine are still running well but if you do big jumps or have a habit of smacking into curbs then be wary.
Options for other cars
These are a good option for other cars too, the HBX 901a in particular. The size is well suited to the 1/12 scale buggy and they look vastly superior to the stock wheels as you can see below.
You can put these on the 1/12 scale WL Toys range (124016, 124017, 124018, 124019) but personally I think 85mm diameter is too much. Personally I prefer the smaller Remo P6973 and 1822 wheels on these cars but everyone had different tastes right?!
Summary and recommendations
This alternative wheel and tyre set for your WL Toys 104001 and 104002 is inexpensive and offers better grip and wear in all conditions compared to stock, especially for offroad where the larger diameter, widths and more agressive tread make for superior grip. They look great and are available in a range of colours to suit your taste. The wheels themselves are not as strong as stock but have not caused me an issue with light bashing. I'm happy to recommend giving these a try due to price: at $14-$19 for a set of 4 wheels and tyres with inner foam, why not give them a go?
If you are looking for a discount on this car, I will post any coupon codes or flash sales for it over here on my coupons and discounts page. Remember buying from any of these links supports my page without any cost to you and is appreciated especially since I don't ask for money via patreon and the like. If you want to get involved in this discussion, feel free to join the QuadifyRC Facebook Group Here or like my page below