With the introduction of the new Stampede XL-5, this FAQ will be overhauled in the near future - please check back after the new models hit the shelves!
Stampede FAQ v1.2
Question: How fast does the Stampede go?
Answer: According to Traxxas, the Stampede will go 23mph out of the box. This was verified by radar using a 2400 7 cell pack. You'll get about 18 mph with a 6 cell battery.
Question: How long will my car run on a battery pack?
Answer: That's a tough one, because there are a lot of factors that will affect how long your car will run. So I'll throw this rough estimate out. With a 1500 6 cell sport pack, stock 20T motor, and stock gearing - you should expect 6-8 minute run times. If you run in the grass a lot, you will see shorter run times - if you are on pavement, you will see slightly longer run times. A 3000 mAh pack will double those figures because it has twice the capacity of the 1500's.
Question: What is the stock gearing for a Stampede?
Answer: Stock gearing is an 18 tooth pinion, and a 87 tooth spur gear.
Question: What is the most powerful motor I can use with the stock mechanical speed control?
Answer: You don't want to go below 17 turns. As a general rule, the less turns a motor has, the more powerful it is. So a 17 turn motor is more powerful than a 21 turn motor.
Question: What is the most powerful motor I can use with the XL-1 electronic speed control?
Answer: 17 turns is the limit for the XL-1. Be careful not to "overgear" the motor, or you risk overheating and damaging the ESC.
Question: How should I gear my motor?
Answer: As a general rule of thumb, you want a pinion gear that is 2 teeth less than the turns on the motor. For example, if you have a 17T motor you'll want to start with 15/87 gearing. If the motor and ESC aren't running too hot, you can go up a tooth at a time on the pinion to get more speed. Running in grass makes the motor work a lot harder, so if you primarily run in your back yard, drop a couple of teeth on the pinion. Your motor and batteries will thank you. If you are using a stock 27T 24° racing motor (like a P2K, or MVP), you'll want to use a 15 or 16 tooth pinion.
Question: What do I need to do to get my truck to do "standing start" wheelies?
Answer: The stock Stampede will do "reverse to forward" wheelies, but for "standing start" wheelies, you'll need to do a few things. First, you'll need a more powerful motor. While the Stinger is better than most "kit" motors, it doesn't have the power to lift the front end without a little coaxing. The minimum you'll need is a 17T (14T preferred) motor. The stock tires are designed for long life, and the rubber compound is hard. You'll want to get "grippier" tires like the ProLine Masher 2000's, and glue them to the rims, so they won't slip in the rims. Put a bunch of pre-load spacers on the rear shocks to stiffen up the rear suspension a bit, or get stronger springs. This will prevent your truck from squatting on takeoff, and help lift the front end up. Don't forget proper gearing, an ESC that can handle your motor, and quality batteries. Budget 1500 packs will lack the punch you need, go with a quality pack. A 7 cell pack will really get things going!
Question: How do I know if my motor is too hot?
Answer: If you can't hold your finger on it for 5 seconds after you run the car through a battery pack, it is too hot. Go down a tooth or two on the pinion.
Question: My truck won't move, the motor revs and the wheels spin when I pick it up, but when I put it back on the ground - it goes nowhere!
Answer: Check the white plastic drive yokes that are on the transmission. The grub screws could have loosened, causing your slippage. There are two different designs, newer models use a grub screw with a pin attached, for these to slip, the screw has to fall out completely. The older design uses 2 grub screws and a phillips head screw in the middle. (You have to disconnect the driveshaft to get to the phillips head screw.)
Traxxas sells more durable steel yokes P/N 4628X for about $20. It is a worthwhile upgrade. MIP sells their Constant Velocity Drive (CVD) system for Traxxas vehicles too.
Question: I can't steer my truck, the servo makes a clicking noise when I try to steer, but the wheels won't turn.
Answer: Sounds like you stripped the gears in your steering servo. This can happen after a bad crash or cartwheel. Replacement gears for the 2018 servo are about $4, the P/N is 2010. Most folks just replace the steering servo with a heavy duty model with metal gears. Popular choices include the Hitec HS-645MG.
Question: Can I convert my Stampede to be a 4X4?
Answer: Yes, you can! See BeeniDAmeeni's 4X4 how-to thread for more information. Lots of folks have succesfully converted their 'pedes to 4WD. Feel free to join in on the 4X4 fun!
Question: Which is better, the Traxxas Stampede or the blah blah blah by blah blah.
Answer: Since you are posting on the Traxxas message board, I would say that the Traxxas Stampede would be your best bet.
These are some basic questions that get asked frequently, if you don't find your answer here (there's still a good chance you won't), please use the search option before you post. There is a wealth of information out there, and chances are, someone has asked a similar question before. Don't be afraid to add to a 4 month old thread and bring it back to the top.
Here's some threads that may also be worth reading:
Stampede Body Guide
Post Your Motor Gearing!
Other operating tips:
Do not try to push or pull objects with your RC car. This will most likely lead to fried motors and/or speed controls.
Do not run your RC indoors. Constant slow speed operation can cause the motor and/or speed control to overheat. (and permanent skid marks in linoleum - don't ask )
Stop and recharge your batteries when the truck loses its "pep" and slows considerably. Running it until it barely moves will shorten the life of the battery packs because of over-discharge.
Do not "slam" the truck into reverse when moving forward (or vice versa), this may result in stripped gears. Change directions gently for more reliable operation.
The Traxxas web site also has a helpful troubleshooting guide, and "official" FAQ for electric vehicles
Guys/gals, please PM me if you have any suggestions/comments/corrections to this thread, it is a work in progress.
Thanks to everyone that has contributed to this FAQ! Keep the suggestions coming. If I don't include your suggestion, it is because of space consideration. I don't want to let this post get too long winded!
arceeguy and razer