Okay, so reason I created this is to answer questions of those whom have questions in regards to Protrac.
What is the Protrac kit?
The Protrac kit is a suspension “kit” that includes parts to better the Traxxas 2wd vehicles. Reason it was designed, was to make the Slash 2wd more competitive against short course vehicles better designed for racing. However quickly it became apparent the kit not only fit the Stampede, but it had excellent effects on the Stampede on its handling. This became some what of a “secret” to members here on the Traxxas forums. Some of the other forums, are more afraid of taking the leap, and are still stuck in the old wide mod ways. Or thinking that there is no alternative to the Stampede flipping over so much. This is both not true, and like you may have observed with other issues, this is the best place for information regarding the Stampede. Here on Traxxas.com community.(as it should be)
Okay so what are its benefits?
The Protrac kit does a few things. It is much more than just some extra width. The Protrac kit adds 11mm to “each” front arms, for a total of 26mm increased arm length on the front, and 3mm rear arm length for the back. It also comes with both Front and Rear shock towers, Reason for this is because of the Shock mounting points. It is set at a wider location. This is again more than just the extra width, but this is was specifically designed this way. On top of that, the Protrac adds rear “toe-in” to the rear wheels. For those who don’t know what rear toe in is, Its basically what it sounds like, The rear wheels facing “inwards” more than it is commonly. This increases its “bite” on turns, and further improves handling. How much so has came into recent debate. Proline has had the information out for a while that it is 1 degree of toe-in. But user Baldydaniels has shed some light on a post, from Proline’s own member of their R&D department stating that it is actually 3 degree. Regardless, it works, and improves stability as well.
Info on Toe in/out to and how it affects your vehicle:
Benefits of the kit:
-Faster more consistent lap times
-Increased forward acceleration
-More fluid suspension geometry for jumping
-Light weight/race inspired design
-Double jump durability
-One easy Install Kit
So where can I purchase the kit, and where does it come from?
The Protrac kit was designed, and sold by the infamous Proline. Proline.com, Local Hobby shops, and other retailers carry the very popular item.
The Protrac kit can be purchased as a Kit, which includes:
Proline Protrac Part # 6062-00 For Slash 2wd
The kit includes:
• Front Arms 6062-01 (2 pcs)
• Rear Arms 6062-02 (2 pcs)
• Front Shock Tower 6062-03 (1 pc)
• Rear Shock Tower with hardware 6062-04 (1 pc)
• Rear Hub Carriers 6062-05 (2 pcs)
• 50mm x 4 Camber Links 6062-06 (4 pcs)
• 70mm x 4mm Steering Links 6062-07 (2 pcs)
• ProTrac Split Six Wheels 2723-00 (4 pcs)
The kit can either be purchased as a whole, for 60 dollars. Or in separate pieces. The part of the kit that is needed for the Stampede, is essentially the Front and Rear arms, and the Front and rear towers. You will also need extended links. Either Protrac links or custom links (will go more into below)
The kit also comes with Rear bearing carriers. These are rumored to be the weakest part of the links, and although have a large amount of mounting points, they are hardly used. More often stock, RPM, or suggested Aluminum Bearing carriers.
Also you will notice it comes with wheels. If the entire kit is purchased separately, besides the wheels It comes out to be very close to the price. So most just by the entire kit. This is not used for the Stampede, as it is Short course Wheel style. I myself sold the wheels locally for 15 dollars.
As for the links, There are a few options. For example, One may use the links provided with their rod ends.
To do this, you will be using the rod ends provided with your truck. This is only if you have a VXL, or Steel adjustable links on your vehicle. If you have the plastic cambers like the XL-5, or Monster jam you do not have them, and only have the 3mm turnbuckle rods that are not used here also. If you do not you will need to purchase separate rod ends, that are 4mm sizes.
You will need Traxxas #5525, or there are a few other combinations available of short and long, or just long.
*Side note: another option here Is RPM long rod ends*
Also, You will gain another benefit here. Rod ends compared to plastic cambers, allow your suspension to flex without moving your wheels to in inwards position. This should be done if you decide to never go with Protrac, or do. Do not purchase RPM plastic Camber links here, as It is not the best option.
Another option is using Traxxas Blue/Red aluminum links. Especially for those who already have em, and do not want them to go to waste. You can just extend the rear links by 3mm, and use the turnbuckles with short rod ends, on the front camber links. You can also purchase another pair of rear camber links, cut off a few mm, and use them on the front camber links for a little more strength. As for the Turnbuckles, Believe me there are NONE that fit with “this”set-up.
So for Turnbuckles, I used Traxxas 3941. In this pic below you can see the Traxxas Red alum links, and Traxxas 3941 used as camber link, and turnbuckle.
Another great, and newly added to our recent sights, is User: Dreadedends Monster Alum tube links. More information found below, but this Is a very nice looking design, and very strong.
Another option, is to use Lunsford Titanium links. Arguable the strongest option, and also the most expensive. To know what size to use here, you will need to determine whether to use the “short” rod ends, or long rod ends with your set-up. This is up to you. One option is to ask them what sizes fit the Stampede, Or look it up. Then add 11mm to the front, and 3mm to the rear.
Regardless you do need to know the size, and what the kit provides. Here are the link sizes.
*The Protrac Arms, Add 11mm of length to each side, and 3mm to each side in the rear, These changes are directly transferred to the size of the camber links, and turnbuckles.
Front Camberlink 69mm
Rear Camberlink 82mm
Front Turnbuckle 96mm
Front Camberlink 80mm
Rear Camberlink 85mm
Front Turnbuckle 107mm
*note, these may change slightly based on your specific set-up, and how much Toe in-out for front wheel.
As Noticed here, The Protrac adds a Total of 26mm to the front arms, and 6mm to the rear. On top of that, This change allows you to run (4) Front offset wheels on the front and back. This takes a slight investment at first, but ends up being a cost, and time saver when one can rotate the wheels to get better wear out of their tires. Just like a 1:1vehicle. To get an Idea of what it will look like on your truck, Take your front wheels and place them on the rear arms, and add 6mm and you will get an idea of how much wider your truck will look like.
Direct effect: Before and after the kit…
As you can see, The difference is large. This has an even bigger impact on the actual drive of the vehicle. If anything else, your vehicle will have a very large reduction in rollovers. In ceratin set-ups will even become obsolete.
Here you can get a good view of underneath of what the arms look like from an underside perspective.
View of the Arms, You can see their length, and how it equals out the vehicle.
Okay so how hard is it to put on?
The Protrac kit was designed to be a direct bolt on. It was made so that no other changes had to be made to the vehicle. It is a direct fit, that most of the time goes on in under an hour easily. To help Here are videos on how to install. This also helped my decision in the beginning, knowing it would be an easy project.
Youtube videos on how to install Protrac kit on Stampede.
*take note, The video shows them installing new shocks, but this is NOT needed to bolt on the kit. They just took the chance to show their items.
Here are set-up sheets from Proline, you can see directly where the bolts go in each and every location.
Wheels and Tires:
As read above, The protrac kit uses (4) front offset wheels. With the Slash, the wheels provided are zero offset, so with the increaded width, the Slash stays under Roar specs. However since we don’t race Stampedes, and have a high center of Gravity, this isn’t needed. We can go for the most width. That being said again, you will need 4 front. This is an excellent chance to pick up new wheels and tires. However if your budget does not allow this, this can be overcome for very inexpensive cost. To solve this issue with stock wheels and tires. One may remove, JUST the rear wheels, by baking them in the oven. (lots of info on that on the web) Doing so, You can pick up a set of front wheels matching your current stock wheels for 9 dollars, and then mount them to your truck. This will also be a great chance to tape up the back tires, to reduce ballooning. This will greatly pay off in the end, as said above you can rotate your wheels and tires to keep tire wear even. This should also be done even if your purchase new wheels and tires, so you have a second set to play with. New wheels/tires are strongly recommended as Stock Talons are nothing compared to some of the options out there. Proline is also the best choice for this matter.
As for wheel size, you can run either 2.2 or stock 2.8 wheel size. However 2.2 will not fit with Protrac’s Rear carriers.
So big question: Why not Run the Jang/Wide mod.
A lot of newer folk hear the rumor that RPM parts are both indestructible, and the best solution for everything they have to sell. Both of these statements are not true. RPM parts are in no way indestructible, and not the best option for everywhere. For example their castor blocks, are to flexible and bend suspension pins. You will notice that most veterans, and the wisest Stampede users only have a small amount of RPM on their vehicle. They/we run a combination of Proline/RPM/Aluminum.
Also, the Jang/Wide mod is both outdated, and more complicated way to go. It involves drilling out pieces to fit the rear suspension pins, and purchasing a second set of suspension pins. It also does not allow someone to purchase the STRC lock pin set, and bolt it on because of the side. It also involves adding select spacers to compensate for changes in rear/front arm dimensions.
Also, here you are just getting “one” benefit. Just wider front arms, instead of added rear toe in, and changed (for the better) suspension geometry. Also, Rear RPM arms, on the front of the stampede is arguable not the best looking option either. It looks like buggy arms, on the front of a monster Truck. Another downside. Again this was the trend, prior to the Protrac Option.
*There is an exception to this rule, such as member Dr Isotope: he has used a specific RPM arm, (not Rustler/Stampede rear) and has fabricated his own shock tower to match the Protrac’s geometry. This is both not a common practice, and not for the common basher. He has a backyard track, and runs an average of 6 packs daily. He puts his vehicle through more in a few weeks, than a lot of people do in a year. For this reason, its is an exception to the rule, and somewhat of the best of both worlds.
As for strength, The Protrac Arms are still unarguably stronger than stock. They are not “as” strong” as RPM because they are not as flexible. Both a plus for suspension(stiffness), and a downside to heavy heavy abuse. (I mean jumping 50 feet abuse)
The Protrac arms have withstood up to aprx. one year of trails that our original members have had em, with both very little broken pieces, and still just as high reputation.
Btw, Most of us have learned that we can take off a lot of the abuse on front arms, with a decent Slash bumper that sticks out past the front wheels. Thus eliminating the transfer of energy to the Arms, Castors,Suspension pins, wheels/tires.
In conclusion: The Protrac is an EXCELLENT upgrade, and what I consider a MUST for the Stampede. It should also be one of the first things done, and Is a dramatic change. It is also not costly when it comes to all you get, and especially when u compare, that just Proline’s shocks are double the price of the entire kit. For those on Youtube, and other forums, it hasn’t seemed to click In yet for Stampede owners. However for Slash 2wd owners, everywhere and us Stampede owners, it’s a must and a given.