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  1. #1
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    Bandit Dragster Build

    Hey all, I've been looking at the Traxxas Funny cars and we have been doing a little RC Drag racing (heads up just for fun runs) and have been wanting to build a Dragster for a while now. My pops decided to go with a VXL Rustler so to be equally competitive with him I chose a VXL Bandit. I picked the Bandit for a couple reasons. 1. I have always liked the look of the buggy style bodies and for those of you who follow NHRA Top Fuel you will notice aside from length, how similar they look with the introduction of the canopy last year. 2. I'm hoping for a little down force at higher speeds with the wing (not 100% set on the stock wing) 3. To give it more of the "Top fuel" look, I liked how much more narrow the Bandits rear a-arms are.

    Now I know what you are thinking....... "For the money spent, why not just buy a FC?" Well i'm glad you asked, Traxxas did the R&D on the funny car already, part of this project for me will be getting to do it myself and have an excuse to do a custom build. Plus i'm hoping to end up with a decent speed run car in the future.

    I found a brand new VXL Bandit (2407) On eBay and won the auction for $227.16 to the door. I took a gamble buying it because the listing said "We tested with the included battery, but will need a new motor" Turns out the ESC was just in LVD and training mode. Not a single thing wrong with it. This thing was never driven and came boxed just like you would have gotten it from the hobby store.








    I've been doing more building then posting so I'm starting the thread a little late but more to follow.

  2. #2
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    Next set of pics are from the test chassis plate I made, nothing special and it was just made from an old metal clip board. I wanted to see if this was something that would even work before putting a ton of time into the alum and fab. I should have taken more pics of the process to get it to this point but more to follow on the actual chassis plate.

    The rear wheels are Nitros so the offset is wrong but wanted an idea of how it was going to look.




    I used a second rear rustler body post for the back of the body and then front VXL toe links to connect the two body post. This did two things, it gave me the rigidity need to make it strong enough and also gave me the option to adjust the rear end to ensure it was true. I didn't want it to try and track left or right.



    The sticker makes the plate look off centered lol




    Don't make fun of the rustler in the background, It's my wife's XL-5. Gives you an idea of the new overall size.



    Last edited by atothep; 04-17-2013 at 01:28 PM.

  3. #3
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    That looks awesome. What body are you going to use?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcguy1324 View Post
    That looks awesome. What body are you going to use?
    Thanks! This is the body I'm going to use for now, I will probably paint a body in the future but it will also be a bandit body.

  5. #5
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. rag6's Avatar
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    Kewl... I will be watchin!

    Are ya gonna try and lock up the rear suspension? Maybe a custom ft shock tower with 4-tech shocks?
    Wanna bash at Greenwood Bashplex in Pittsburgh ???

  6. #6
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    You could use velcro to hold the body instead and chop most of the second shock tower there in the middle.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by rag6 View Post
    Kewl... I will be watchin!

    Are ya gonna try and lock up the rear suspension? Maybe a custom ft shock tower with 4-tech shocks?
    I thought about it I want to have some form of shock in the real, right now these are completely un-tuned ultra longs (front rustler shocks )with progressive springs. I need to play with track surface but will morts likely start out with 40-50wt oil and the 1 hole pistons. As for the front, I have something in the works but am waiting on parts, not sure if it's going to work yet, the n4-tec shocks do look promising though.

    Quote Originally Posted by cunawarit View Post
    You could use velcro to hold the body instead and chop most of the second shock tower there in the middle.
    Since these pics I have cut the middle shock tower to couture with the body and hopefully get ride of some drag in the process.

  8. #8
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    Got some more work done, got the permanent chassis cut out and polished. I didn't to crazy with the polishing knowing the way I drive haha!









    Using all black stuff except for the shock tube, battery strap and upper chassis plate.




    The Rear end all shimmed up. Should have some more updates later tonight.


  9. #9
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    Looks pretty sweet

  10. #10
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. rag6's Avatar
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    Are you ever gonna get crazy with the power system? You could always cut down the center tower to pretty much nothin. You should check your wheelbase with 1/10 funny cars. You may be able to pick up a body that will fit the width of the chassis. Any idea on rear tires?
    Wanna bash at Greenwood Bashplex in Pittsburgh ???

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by rag6 View Post
    Are you ever gonna get crazy with the power system? You could always cut down the center tower to pretty much nothin. You should check your wheelbase with 1/10 funny cars. You may be able to pick up a body that will fit the width of the chassis. Any idea on rear tires?
    dimensions for funny car
    http://traxxas.com/products/models/e...funnycar-specs

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by rag6 View Post
    Are you ever gonna get crazy with the power system? You could always cut down the center tower to pretty much nothin. You should check your wheelbase with 1/10 funny cars. You may be able to pick up a body that will fit the width of the chassis. Any idea on rear tires?
    The wheel base is not long enough or narrow enough to run the FC Body, plus I want a top fuel look with Traxxas already doing the FC. As for the ESC and Motor, I have the FC ET-3s and am going to run the 3500kv Velineon motor for now. Been looking at the FC 2400KV motor but not really in the budget with everything else I spent. There are a couple other 4-pole sensored motors I have in mind but not sure yet. I have a full set of FC front and rear wheels/tires coming along with 12mm to 14mm hexes for the rear. For the front I have Nitro Rustler castor blocks, axels and king pins so I can run the FCs bearing wheels. I've looked at tons of rear tires but they are all so short, like the panther 2.2 slicks.

  13. #13
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. rag6's Avatar
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    The traxxas fc is 1/8, and I was thinking your bandit was 1/10 in relation...but if a 1/8 body is too narrow then a 1/10 will certainly be too narrow.
    Wanna bash at Greenwood Bashplex in Pittsburgh ???

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by rag6 View Post
    The traxxas fc is 1/8, and I was thinking your bandit was 1/10 in relation...but if a 1/8 body is too narrow then a 1/10 will certainly be too narrow.
    It would definitely fit over the chassis but it's to narrow in the sense that the wheels would stick out side the body. A FC is supposed to have the wheels tucked inside the fender imo. I've seen it done on the Jato conversion, don't get me wrong they look sick, just not my cup pf tea! Plus I'm really going for a Top Fuel look. I was looking at some 1'8 buddy bodies to see it I could cover the extended chassis but no luck so far.

  15. #15
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    Got a few more things done, Grey trans swapped out for black case. ESC and motor mocked up.





    Also some goodies came in the mail. Got all the blue anodized stuff installed, middle body post cut and the speed run anaconda front and rears.









    Still need to go through and adjust castor and camber. I have a gauge but I always hate sitting down and doing it. :-/

  16. #16
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    That thing really looks sick , man I just really like it and I like the wayt hat body looks on it. Very nice job!!!
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  17. #17
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Petertje60's Avatar
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    Awesome car. Very nice built. Nice picture work too.
    A Baaandit. Lol.
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  18. #18
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    Thanks all, should be fun to drive too. I picked up the 4 channel TQI so I can have all the Funny car functions (burnout, stage and race!) Hopefully I will get some more done tomorrow and have more pics to add!

  19. #19
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    Wicked build Atothep! - love the way it looks, and awesome to see someone going outside the box on the Bandit. Love the rear rustler anacondas on the bandit, the raked stance looks mint!
    PHOENIX Bandit,Summit,Funny Car,Darkrayne Rustler

  20. #20
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    WOW! Its looking freaking awesome now!

    I'd love to know how fast it goes when it is done 3S? 4S? 6S?

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by cunawarit View Post
    WOW! Its looking freaking awesome now!

    I'd love to know how fast it goes when it is done 3S? 4S? 6S?
    Stach35* I'm a pretty bid fan of the raked look as well!

    Unfortunately the ET-3s is limited to only 3s. So for now that will be it. I'll try to make up for some of that in gearing. With this build I wanted a dual purpose car, Dragster and speed speed run car. I need to get a bigger 3s though, I have two but they are both only 3200mah 35c batteries. Open to suggestions. (without breaking the bank!!)

  22. #22
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    Awesome Bandit! I've been checking this thread for the last couple days and this thing really blew up. I'm a fan of the NHRA and this build definitely fits the bill and while I can appreciate the idea to swap over to nitro front spindles with the funny car wheels and tires, it looks great as is.

  23. #23
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    Thanks Oaks! I really like the way these look too, they will only be used for speed runs. The Funny cars wheels and tires will only be for drag racing. I am going to set up another set of front caster blocks so it will be very simple to swap between the two.

    On that note, checked my tracking numbers and everything else should be in this morning with the exception of the 14mm hexes. I'll get some pics up this afternoon.

  24. #24
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    Still waiting on the mail, smh......

    Still waiting on the mail to get here but was able to get a bit more done! Got the battery and ESC cable extensions made, all the wiring cleaned up and had a chance to make a few test launches in the garage. Its temporarily geared at a 28/83 (waiting on my 32p stuff to get here) Since I am using all the funny car components, I wanted to be geared similar. I plan on starting with 20/36 which will put me at a final drive of 4.89. The funny cars final drive is 4.84. I know the FC has a lower KV rated motor but I should be okay with less torque because of having less weight. Even with the aluminum plate i'm at 3.7 lbs and the FC is 4.4 lbs. About 2/3 of a pound lighter. I have a range of other gearing to try once the testing starts.

    All of the Funny car functions work perfectly and I did leave some pretty awesome burnout tracks on the floor!!!











  25. #25
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. rag6's Avatar
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    Shame they dont make a line lock for 1/10 rc... Couple drops of clorox and the tires would smoke!

    This thing is really lookin good a2p...
    Wanna bash at Greenwood Bashplex in Pittsburgh ???

  26. #26
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    You could find a scale blown hemi and fill that space between the body and rear shock tower. Cut the scoop open and have ram air to cool the esc. Would look like one of Don Garllets's Swamp Rats.

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by jodart View Post
    You could find a scale blown hemi and fill that space between the body and rear shock tower. Cut the scoop open and have ram air to cool the esc. Would look like one of Don Garllets's Swamp Rats.
    HA! that would be pretty awesome! I was looking at the old parma V8 scale replicas and if they were not so hard to find or expensive when you do, I'd get one of them!

  28. #28
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    Well no wheels in the mail but did get some work done on the front end. I have the steering rods cut down and installed but really can't do anything more until I get the front wheels in. There is alot of play in the the front end, more then I want in a speed run/dragster. It's all in the ball joint rod ends on the lower a-arms. I think this may not work because the servo sits back to far so if end points are not set just right the hub can push away from the car causing the steering to bind. I'm uploading those photos now.











  29. #29
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    Front end pics with steering linkage.





    http://youtu.be/ZtnMN8jOZhs

  30. #30
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    Love your work mate
    PHOENIX Bandit,Summit,Funny Car,Darkrayne Rustler

  31. #31
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. rag6's Avatar
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    Now your showing off. All this in 2 days? Nice...
    Wanna bash at Greenwood Bashplex in Pittsburgh ???

  32. #32
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    WOW! This is turning out nicer that I could have ever envisaged!

    Amazing! Potentially the next craze along the lines of Backslash!

    Where do you plan to drag race this?

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by rag6 View Post
    Now your showing off. All this in 2 days? Nice...
    Haha, thanks man. I wish the planning, ordering and then waiting for all the stuff to get here only took two days! I've been wanting to do this and been planning it for a month or so now. Here are a couple pics of my pops Rustler, the one that inspired me.




    He is going to start a thread on it in the next week or so. I throw up a link when he does.

    Quote Originally Posted by cunawarit View Post
    WOW! This is turning out nicer that I could have ever envisaged!

    Amazing! Potentially the next craze along the lines of Backslash!

    Where do you plan to drag race this?
    Thanks and I think somebody already had the idea, just a quick search on here for "Backslash" and I found this!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jrgold View Post
    Not sure where i'll race yet. I've been try to find people in the Killeen Tx, area who want to drag race but no such luck thus far.

  34. #34
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    Couple updates-

    I've been racking my brain trying to get the front end happy but it's just not going to work. Mounting the FC bulk head to the bandit chassis worked well but due to the location of the servo, the steering if just not right. I think if I modified the upper chassis to mount the servo upside down amd closer to the front, would do the trick. It needs to site closer to the front because right now the hubs can turn forward if end points are not set just right. The thing with that though is it makes it almost impossible to even turn around. Even though it's designed to drive in a strait line, i'd like to maintain full steering. For now the bandit front end is going back on. I want to get out and start testing!!! Also, the Funny car wheels and tires came in, the STRC 12mm to 14mm hubs are sick!!!








  35. #35
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    Any recent updates on this or videos? Also this would make a awesome sand dragster too. Some 2.8 Sandpaws in the rear and Mohawks in front would look sick and most likley throw a wicked rooster tail. Or even more radical the snowmobile kit with the skis in front and tracks in rear. Ok ill stop before i feel inclined to build one lol.
    " You just got passed by a Traxxas"

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by NvDesertRat96 View Post
    Any recent updates on this or videos? Also this would make a awesome sand dragster too. Some 2.8 Sandpaws in the rear and Mohawks in front would look sick and most likley throw a wicked rooster tail. Or even more radical the snowmobile kit with the skis in front and tracks in rear. Ok ill stop before i feel inclined to build one lol.
    no real updates yet, I have to rework the front end and I'm getting ready to do some more work on the differential. I'm filling it with silly putty and switching to the new rpm case. I did order some the PJ1 track bite so we will see how that works, but I will definitely get some videos and more pictures posted. It would look totally sick set up as a sandrail, and that is totally doable just change out the suspension for a different shock and height setup, throw on some paddles and let it rip lol

  37. #37
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Snook Man's Avatar
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    Nice build.

    Have you had the chance to do any long high speed passes yet? I ran into an issue with a build with the rear wheel axle shafts being at a similar angle as you are running. After a few long high speed passes the angle would cause a heat buildup at the U joints and the plastic would start to melt and get very sloppy.
    Probably not a big issue with short drags, but during long high speed passes the heat builds up rather quickly with big angles.
    I had to add a 3/4 inch spacer between the chassis deck and rear end to reduce the angle of the wheel shafts from the diff to the axle carrier to keep the plastic slider shafts from failing very quickly. Your rig weighs a lot less than what I was dealing with so it may not be as big an issue but still something you should keep an eye on.

    I also have run into the same issue with the steering setup with a few builds. The angle of the toe links is too extreme. You will either have to move the bell crank forward or add stops to prevent the axle carrier from over rotating and ending up with the over cam effect.
    Last edited by Snook Man; 05-19-2013 at 11:55 AM.
    No slipper/tall gearing/power = broken parts.

  38. #38
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    those slicks are awesome. please post a running vid once its up and running

  39. #39
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    how did your pop make that wheelie bar on his rustler he has the rpm rear bumper mount but what wheelie bar is that?

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snook Man View Post
    Nice build.

    Have you had the chance to do any long high speed passes yet? I ran into an issue with a build with the rear wheel axle shafts being at a similar angle as you are running. After a few long high speed passes the angle would cause a heat buildup at the U joints and the plastic would start to melt and get very sloppy.
    Probably not a big issue with short drags, but during long high speed passes the heat builds up rather quickly with big angles.
    I had to add a 3/4 inch spacer between the chassis deck and rear end to reduce the angle of the wheel shafts from the diff to the axle carrier to keep the plastic slider shafts from failing very quickly. Your rig weighs a lot less than what I was dealing with so it may not be as big an issue but still something you should keep an eye on.

    I also have run into the same issue with the steering setup with a few builds. The angle of the toe links is too extreme. You will either have to move the bell crank forward or add stops to prevent the axle carrier from over rotating and ending up with the over cam effect.
    Sorry for the late replies but no, I have not had a chance to do any speed runs yet. I see exactly what you mean about the high angles. The rear shocks were just a temp set up will building the set to run on the rear. They were just factory ultra fronts, I am still running ultra fronts but with slash progressive springs, 1 hole pistons with 50wt oil. The ride height it about right now. Strait axles and arms. As for the front end, I have switched back to the bandit front. I have an upper chassis plate in stock to maybe modify but haven't decided yet. I may just keep the FC front for spare parts for the actually Funny car.

    Quote Originally Posted by rcguy1324 View Post
    those slicks are awesome. please post a running vid once its up and running
    Thanks, but this pair of slicks were not awesome. I cannot get them trued at all. Even after balancing and tons of burnouts they are very uneven. I think I just the short end of the stick with this pair lol.

    Here is just a quick launch, 28/76 gearing, 1/4 turn out on the slipper and 40% launch control with a light coat of sugar water on the floor. The second vid is to show how uneven the slicks are, I'm pretty sure the wobble is either from the foams or the belts in the tires.

    http://youtu.be/OmwohfINn80
    http://youtu.be/KSjBEjspH-A

    Quote Originally Posted by JeremyKidd View Post
    how did your pop make that wheelie bar on his rustler he has the rpm rear bumper mount but what wheelie bar is that?
    Its also RPM. Its the low profile wheely bar designed for the Slash. Part # 81312

    Did some test launches last night and this was my best 60' Time. (6' to scale) Again, a light coat of sugar water on the floor and I'm still smoking the tires. I bought some track bite but haven't had a chance to lay any down yet.


    Aside from taking a nap at the tree, this was best mph.


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