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  1. #1
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    Dissapointed in Alias motors

    Bought my Alias 3 days ago. Like it a lot! It is my first quad. I was looking to go full on gopro camera set up and shoot some cool videos of 4 wheeling the jeep. My LHS, Mike's Hobby Shop in Dallas, talked me into getting a more beginner setup to learn to fly. I am glad I did as I have crashed and burned a few times. I expected this to be a riot and it is. I love it. I almost have the hang of forward flight and zooming around like an airplane rather than just back and forth and side to side.

    One thing I did not however expect was the fragility of the motors. 4-6 hours flight time from the manufacturer?!? If I had known that I probably would not have bought one period. Why are they so fragile? I have already got one motor that will not work. Did a reset and all that good stuff. It appears to be toast. This is after less than 6 runs. Not even 30 mins. $5/min and out? That is unacceptable to me.

    I am coming from the SCT racing addiction. A MIPd up 10SCTE is my newer racer. I had nitro back in the day and have had a few brushless trucks more recently, now the alias. I am used to replacing parts. Racing hard you break stuff. Motors though are pretty rock solid for those trucks. Never had to deal with brushed motors at all. Is this normal for brushed motors?
    Last edited by ksb51rl; 05-18-2014 at 10:33 PM.

  2. #2
    Marshal Dadx2mj's Avatar
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    There has been a LOT said on this topic. I too had two motor failures , like you I crashed my Alias more than I would have liked to int he beginning as well. Since then I have become much better flying it and the replacement set of motors I recieved from Traxxas have been going strong for over 2 months now, getting closer to 3 months. This is with an average of two packs a day going thru it.

    There appears to be some changes to the motors that have been reported by other members. The current set in my Alias has breather holes in the top of the can by the props, a new set I have in waiting has no holes in the can at the top. Out of curiosity do your motors have the holes or are they sealed.
    BlindMan Racing
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  3. #3
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    Dissapointed in Alias motors

    I am not sure yet. I brought it to work to fly in the huge atrium we have as nobody is here on Sunday. 7 stories of almost football field size area = awesome!

    It just all the sudden stopped working. It almost feels like the motor shaft is not touching anything. It seems to spin more freely than the others. But as to the motor and if it has holes or not I will have to take it apart when I get home. No tools here small enough to do it.

    Save me some time in reading all the other posts... Do I buy new motors or is Traxxas doing anything about it? In the few posts I have read it seems to go both ways. I bought an extra battery and was planning on flying during all my breaks tonight. Looks like that is not the case. Bummed.
    Last edited by ksb51rl; 05-18-2014 at 10:34 PM.

  4. #4
    Marshal Dadx2mj's Avatar
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    You dont have to take it apart to see if the motors have holes or not. Just look at the top of the motor by the pinion gear with it mounted in the Alias, If the motors have the holes you can see them while the motors are installed.
    BlindMan Racing
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  5. #5
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    I cant wait to get the camera mod though. I am already thinking about how I can mod the battery holder to put in a bigger 1S battery for longer flight times. I imagine the camera will suck juice too so I gotta think about that. I expect I will upgrade to a custom rig once I get this flying in to shape but the alias was great while it worked! I expect to give to my son so he can get handy for piloting my camera rig while I focus on the shot.

  6. #6
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    Ah well if thats the case then my motors have no holes whatsoever.

  7. #7
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    Words of advise for motors. Try to kill your throttle when a crash seems imminent and do not power stall the motors. It will burn them out. I let my motors cool down for a couple of minutes between batteries. It may help in the long run.

    As to adding a larger 1S battery you may or may not get that much greater flight time due to the increased weight of the larger battery. Increased weight always hurts flight time duration. Increased weight also puts more strain on the motors by demanding more from them in operation and by longer operation run times if any. The motors will run hotter. There is always a trade off with increasing battery size from the stock size. Add additional weight like the camera and the quad starts getting even heavier, putting additional strain on the quad's motors.

    All things to consider

    Good luck-

    JB
    Last edited by jbrumberg; 05-18-2014 at 10:18 PM.

  8. #8
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    Ha, two of mine went out on my first flight. My original motors (purchases 4/4/14) had the black cover that covered the holes on the motors. The replacement motors they sent me are solid. No holes. It's been riding like a champ for a solid 2 weeks now. I also ordered from ebay for $34.99, a set of motors from a hobby shop and they also have no holes. The picture shows that they have holes. I was pleasantly surprised that they didn't. So I would call Traxxas and they will send you a set. And you have the option to order some from ebay while you wait.
    I agree it sucks they go out so quick. But If the replacements are all the same and I didnt just luck out and have a good set, you'll have lot of fun after you get the replacements. But you said yours has no holes huh? I really hope I didn't speak to soon. I been flying 3 batteries x twice a day for 2 weeks. Gotta mean something. Right? Someone hold me and tell me it's gonna be ok... I need my al... Wait... What... Did I type that out loud. Gotta go

    This post has been edited to remove bad language. Please keep language suitable for all memebers and if you type something the language filter blocks (****) you must edit the post to remove the offending language

    Dadx2mj
    Last edited by Dadx2mj; 05-19-2014 at 08:44 AM.

  9. #9
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    Yeah I got that kill the motor speech when I bought it. I think I have done pretty good on that. I am going to run over to Mike's before work and see if they have some motors in stock to get flying. It would be nice to get some warranty though. It seems like it burned out way too quick initially. I will be the first to admit I am a new pilot but I am not that terrible

  10. #10
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    Took apart the motor tonight. It had a blackish metallic washer/sticker covering a 4 hole motor.
    I also realized what *might* have burned it. As I read some more posts about causes the prop drive shaft had slid down and bound up on that motor. It did this several times. No way to tell except by close inspection. This is most likely what burned it up as all three other props would spin and this one would not until I pushed the drive shaft up from the bottom. It would 'snap' back into place by only about 1/16". So either the prop gear is moving or the motor is moving around. Not sure which. The motor shaft is solid in the can. I can only think that the prop was not tightly screwed to the shaft.
    Have reset the accelerometer and the dip test. Dipping under thrust did not cause the motor to spin.
    Any other ideas?

    Last edited by drunkenmugsy; 05-19-2014 at 05:36 AM.

  11. #11
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    please ex-plane what you mean by shaft sliding down . i don't think it can if every things tight.....

  12. #12
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    both of my Alias' have a slight amount of up and down travel in the main shafts. it is very slight, and hasn't seemed to have any effect on either of them.
    are you saying that your motors had an adhesive cover factory installed over the four holes on the top of the motor can? is that what that little round thing is beside it in the pic? I read where one other person had found the same thing but have to wonder if this was a retro fit to the first run motors, or if this is what will be found on the newest ones as well? the pictures I saw of the newer motors look like they are solid where the holes use to be, rather than covered over?
    anyone else find this sticker cover over the holes of their newer motors? i have three more sets of original release motors. when the next set goes in, i may just do that .
    Think YELLOW Traxxas, please make a YELLOW Alias.

  13. #13
    Marshal Dadx2mj's Avatar
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    spoonerrw I BELIEVE you are correct the sticker was used to cover the holes as a retro fi for motors that they already had in stock. The motors that came later had a solid can with no holes in them at all.

    I am not really sure if the lack of holes is all that was done or not. I have a set of motors in my Alias now with holes in it that are open as they came from Traxxas that are almost 3 months old and still going strong.
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  14. #14
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    thanks... that was what I figured, and it makes sense. I do know that the fine dust from the gears and pinions wearing gets in the holes as I found it inside my original set. I have three sets of the first run motors, couldn't hurt, so gonna seal them up.
    Think YELLOW Traxxas, please make a YELLOW Alias.

  15. #15
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    Think you could invert them and blow them out with compressed air first?

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by kidroc6661 View Post
    please ex-plane what you mean by shaft sliding down . i don't think it can if every things tight.....
    I took pics so you can see the difference as the other front side is doing it too. I think what may have happen is the gear is on upside down from the factory. The motor I replaced does not do this anymore. I must have lucked out and got it on the right way. I am going to take apart the other front and swap it around to see if it makes a difference. All blade screws are tight.



    After a hard landing the impact would shift the rotor shaft down and it will bind. This equals burned motor if you land hard and try to take off a couple times. See if you can just push your rotor blade down to make it do this. It does not take very much pressure.

  17. #17
    Marshal Dadx2mj's Avatar
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    Looking at those pictures I would take a close look at the bearings on that shaft, I would not be surprised if you have a bad bearing letting that shaft move that much. If so and it caused the shaft to bind that explains why the motor burned up.
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  18. #18
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    Wow... That's a new one on me??? Mine have a tiny little up and down travel, they always did, but I wasn't able to force either one of them to cause that. Are your bearings facing with the partially shielded side to the outside like they should be? Thats the only thing I can think of. The unshielded side might cause a height difference if they were facing out? Are all four like this on yours?
    Think YELLOW Traxxas, please make a YELLOW Alias.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dadx2mj View Post
    Looking at those pictures I would take a close look at the bearings on that shaft, I would not be surprised if you have a bad bearing letting that shaft move that much. If so and it caused the shaft to bind that explains why the motor burned up.
    You sir are correct. Good call! I took apart the other front side rotor and it had a blown bearing. This was the pic above. The original burnt motor did not move quite so much. But it did the same thing.
    The first rotor was fine, bearings were fine. I guess it is still a mystery then why the first one would bind. It does not move at all. The 2 rear motors do not move at all.
    I guess this could all just be my lack of flying skills. Banging this thing up while learning. I am thinking it is a good thing I didnt get the more expensive one...
    Last edited by sunkenmugsy; 05-19-2014 at 05:06 PM.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by spoonerrw View Post
    both of my Alias' have a slight amount of up and down travel in the main shafts. it is very slight, and hasn't seemed to have any effect on either of them.
    are you saying that your motors had an adhesive cover factory installed over the four holes on the top of the motor can? is that what that little round thing is beside it in the pic? I read where one other person had found the same thing but have to wonder if this was a retro fit to the first run motors, or if this is what will be found on the newest ones as well? the pictures I saw of the newer motors look like they are solid where the holes use to be, rather than covered over?
    anyone else find this sticker cover over the holes of their newer motors? i have three more sets of original release motors. when the next set goes in, i may just do that .
    I can confirm that my motors had that black "filter" over my original alias motors (purchased 4/4/14). Two of the motors went out on my 1st flight. Both were red wire (diagonal from each other). I bought 3 off of eBay while waiting for traxxas replacements. When I was testing the eBay replacement traxxas motors in my house before work, one of the black leads had went out. I was glad (as well as aggravated) I picked up a black lead with the 2 reds I purchased. The motors I received from traxxas (about a week and half ago) look just like the motors I purchased off eBay. Except the new traxxas motors have lasted the longest time. But I would only replace a broke motor with a new one, as to where now, thanks to customer service (and this forum) I would now replace the whole set and save the old good motors for when it comes to changing one at a time.
    Anyways, one of the new traxxas replacements actually went out this evening. It was a red lead again. This particular motor has been making a real light clicking sound for a few days. I could only hear it when I would turn the blade manually (say to check the spurs, which I would do after every 3 battery session) The clicking was very very light sounding. My skills are night and day from the first few weeks of having but It has took some beatings though. As I transitioned from normal to fast mode for instance. Not a lot of crashes but big crashes. So it could be my fault. I replaced it with a replacement motor I purchased while waiting on traxxas replacements. Which I took out when I replaced them all with the new traxxas replacements.
    That week and half I had with it was the longest time I had with it with no problems. I'm a much better flyer now so I'm hoping the replacement traxxas motors that I purchased off eBay will last longer then they did before. I hardly ever drop it anymore (in expert 1 anyhow. Expert 2: forget about it for now. A slight push forward and it goes straight down = 1-2 of the bigger crashes) The replacement motors I bought look exactly like the motors traxxas sent me, with no vent holes or no black filter sticky things covering the holes. Solid piece. I will do my morning fly in the AM before work, after I drop off my daughter to school and hope for the best. I enjoy starting my day off with a spin and I enjoy ending my work day with a spin in my alias. I just ordered more from eBay because I used my last red lead motor tonight. Still have a new black one and a used black one. Also ordered a 4th battery, white blades, and a charger that charges 2 batteries at a time. I just hope I don't go through what I did the first month of having my alias. I will replace the whole set if one of the motors I have now go out. Unless it's a black lead, I'd use my last used one. If the replacements I just ordered don't last this time, then I'll know to only order from traxxas, even though these look exactly like traxxas replacements. Sorry for going on here. It just started with a reply to your question if anybody else has seen the motors with the black thing covering the holes. Short answer is yes. Should probably put that before this glob of text but I'm on a ipad and it's a pain to get to the top and I'm just giving excuses. Gotta go. Thanks for listening...if anybody is. Traxxas rules!!!!! I have faith. After buying 4 batteries and different lenses and blades and accessories etc., there's no turning back now. Gotta keep the faith. That or start buying motors and not telling my wife. Cuz She already be like, you messing with that thing again and I be like yea women, it was my fault it broke. She be like, I should have never bought that for you for your early b day present.. Which is now next week. I be like, traxxas is a stand up company. Back up..... Ok. Back to real life. I really wait till she goes to work and I'm super quick now with changing motors now and that little Allen wrench. I could do it on the can if I had to. Not sayin I have or haven't. Just sayin. I could

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy1 View Post
    Think you could invert them and blow them out with compressed air first?
    probably not Jeremy... there is very little space between the core and the sidewalls of the can. also, since these are "whisker" type brushes, there is always the chance that you might jar one out of place, which would be the end of the motor and in a big hurry. I have just been brushing off the top of the motor can after flying my current set, and keeping the gear well area as clean as possible. it isn't 100%, but it does keep it from building up around the holes.
    Think YELLOW Traxxas, please make a YELLOW Alias.

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    I wish they had went with a 350mah 2S pack. That would have allowed for the same POWER out of the motors (as well as size/weight/flight times), but would have cut the current draw in half. Those brushes just aren't up to the task of carrying the required current for very long it would appear.

    But then, I've ALWAYS been a believer in high voltage and low current for electric motors of any kind.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by clcorbin View Post
    I wish they had went with a 350mah 2S pack. That would have allowed for the same POWER out of the motors (as well as size/weight/flight times), but would have cut the current draw in half. Those brushes just aren't up to the task of carrying the required current for very long it would appear.

    But then, I've ALWAYS been a believer in high voltage and low current for electric motors of any kind.
    Not to change the subject but - ME TOO! I think they could have gone with a slightly bigger battery. I put a friends 1.2oz minicam on my alias and it flew fine indoors. A little sluggish but pretty stable.

  24. #24
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    Lost my first motor today after only 20 flights! Just got this thing 2 weeks ago. I have been flying RC models for over 40 years and never seen failures like I read about here. I bought a set of replacement motors but this will be the only and last set I will buy. Now that the Blade 200 was just released with brushless motors I will be trying one of those. It cost more but this was not such a good deal for $150.

    I see Traxxas employess in the forums but they never reply to these posts. What's up with that?

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by hrosee View Post
    Lost my first motor today after only 20 flights! Just got this thing 2 weeks ago. I have been flying RC models for over 40 years and never seen failures like I read about here. I bought a set of replacement motors but this will be the only and last set I will buy. Now that the Blade 200 was just released with brushless motors I will be trying one of those. It cost more but this was not such a good deal for $150.

    I see Traxxas employess in the forums but they never reply to these posts. What's up with that?
    I am curious, if you know... do your motors have the four holes in the top of the motor cans? I am also curious if they do not have holes, if there is a tape type cover over four holes, or of the motors have solid cans with no holes on top at all?
    Think YELLOW Traxxas, please make a YELLOW Alias.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by spoonerrw View Post
    I am curious, if you know... do your motors have the four holes in the top of the motor cans? I am also curious if they do not have holes, if there is a tape type cover over four holes, or of the motors have solid cans with no holes on top at all?

    Thanks for asking and making me look. I did buy one replacement for the bad one to make a complete set of four and here is what I found.

    The ones that were on the Alias when I bought it a couple of weeks ago have a piece of tape over the 4 holes to make it look like there are no holes. The new one I bought, still in the package, is solid with no holes. What's up with that? I guess they are trying to trick us by using old motors and making them look like new motors. That is not nice or honest at all. I guess I will be calling them tomorrow and seeing if they will replace the other 3. I just live a few miles south of them so may pay a visit in person.

    I don't like being taken advantage of.

    All that said I wonder if there is really any difference in the new motors other than no holes??

  27. #27
    Marshal Dadx2mj's Avatar
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    Traxxas is not trying to trick anyone. They simply covered up the holes on the existing motors to try and prevent fine debris from entering the motor until the new style motors were available. I view it as them taking every step they could to prevent issues, not trying to trick their customers.
    BlindMan Racing
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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by hrosee View Post
    Thanks for asking and making me look. I did buy one replacement for the bad one to make a complete set of four and here is what I found.

    The ones that were on the Alias when I bought it a couple of weeks ago have a piece of tape over the 4 holes to make it look like there are no holes. The new one I bought, still in the package, is solid with no holes. What's up with that? I guess they are trying to trick us by using old motors and making them look like new motors. That is not nice or honest at all. I guess I will be calling them tomorrow and seeing if they will replace the other 3. I just live a few miles south of them so may pay a visit in person.

    I don't like being taken advantage of.

    All that said I wonder if there is really any difference in the new motors other than no holes??
    Dadx2mj is correct, and there was quite a bit of discussion about the possibility of debris getting in to the brush area from those holes. I myself saw that as a corrective measure to try and prevent motor failures on Traxxas' part and it was definitely worth the try. they pretty much listened to what we were discussing and tried it. no slight of hand or trickery there at all in my opinion .
    as far as the new motors go, they are slowly making there way in to the hands of the end user, but it takes time when it comes to things that are mass produced. of the small number of people I have read posts who have them, I have yet to see any complaints of premature failures, and there would definitely be complaining going on if there were.
    let everyone know how your new one with the new style motors works out. it is easy to talk about failures, but what we who own them need is an even balance of discussion that also depicts the successes.
    Think YELLOW Traxxas, please make a YELLOW Alias.

  29. #29
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    So you guys are saying the ONLY change they made to the motors was to close up the holes? I was hoping that were changes to brushes to a tougher material. The bottom like is with the design of this quad you will have to plan on new motors ever 30-40 flights period. Even the after market motors are only rated at the same times. That is just how it is.

    ...

    I doubt that many understand the maintenance required when they buy an Alias. In my wildest dreams I would have not thought I would have to replace motors so often. I have been flying RC FOR 50 years but never had any experience with brushed motors this small. I. Have come to the conclusion it is what it is.

    Based on what you guys are stating the new motors will not be any better than the old ones I have with the holes covered.
    Last edited by ksb51rl; 06-17-2014 at 11:46 AM.

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