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  1. #1
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    New to Nitro and bought a used T-Maxx 3.3

    Hey there. I'm looking to get some advice on how to get this T-Maxx up and running. I used to run electric RC cars when I was a teenager but it's been a good 10+ years. I've always wanted a nitro truck and an old friend offered me his when he moved out of state. I gave him $50 so I'm hoping I didn't waste it lol.

    I know almost nothing about it so I'm wondering where to start. I know that it's been sitting in a garage and not been run in about 4 or 5 years. I know it ran when put away but haven't even tried to start it yet for fear of breaking something. And I know it's filthy dirty lol.

    So what do I do first? What sorts of things do I need to check? Will it need stuff replaced just from sitting like the shocks or even the engine?

    Also, I've heard that nitro is a pain maintenance wise. Is this true? Should I be looking to convert this to an E-Maxx if I don't want to worry about it after it's up and running?

    I really appreciate any help I can get. I'll post up a couple pics of it when I get home. I'm excited to get any sort of RC vehicle up and running for the first time in a long time!
    Last edited by Double G; 01-02-2014 at 07:23 PM. Reason: language

  2. #2
    RC Qualifier
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    Welcome!!!
    Go to the support link here. There are tons of PDF's that will help you.
    I would be concerned the engine would have oil residue build up on it. You can take the glow plug out and squirt a few drops of WD40 down there and crank the engine over.
    Scott

    4909 MAXX 3.3
    4910 MAXX 2.5

  3. #3
    RC Racer
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    I have not had many problems and they were my fault once the motor is tuned and motor is clean I would rebuild the diffs make sure if you rebuild the diffs you put a mark you can see on the top of it shocks are a maybe I am not sure make sure to do a servo test and if you break any thing try rpm I hear they are good quality.

  4. #4
    RC Qualifier
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    Apr 2013
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    nitro is so much fun... just learn to tune whatever you adjust adjust in small increments.. When I got my new nitro I found myself adjust needles way too much at a time. Now I only adjust a little at a time and then see how engine sounds and responds... TUNE CARB WHEN FUEL LEVEL IS SLIGHTLY BELOW HALF TANK OR ELSE IT WILL HAVE A HIGH IDLE....ALSO FINE TUNE YOUR FINAL TUNE ONCE ENGINE WARMS UP A GOOD 6 MINUTES OF RUNNING TIME FOR THE TUNE TO BE NEAR OR SPOT ON.... youll get it.... first thing is to clean everything clean it good and do a visual of what needs attention. Before you even think of firing it up read the manual of that particular model. And get a fuel filter... it will get very dusty and dirty and stuff can easily get into tank when refueling... I recommend a racers edge medium fuel filter blue one. Oh and get new glow plugs... HOW IN THE BEAUTIFUL WORLD IS EVERYONE IN HERE GETTING their t-maxxes for cheap. Where are they near my area? Well at least mine I got it new and know the history of it.... Local craiglisters in my area want like 350 for an older 2.5 tmaxx common people...
    Last edited by 2010; 06-19-2013 at 11:41 AM.

  5. #5
    RC Competitor
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    I would suggest, take out the glow plug, squirt wd40 down hole, and in carb fully open, turn over with ez start for 10 seconds and repeat 3 times (traxxas recommend this) put carb back to factory setting, buy new glow plugins then try and start it up. Don't be fazed that it might take a few attempts, once you have run it, repeat wd40 trick above as it will prolong the engine and give it a good lube.
    Good luck and have fun, I have just resurrected my 11 year old maxx with a new 3.3 and its fun all over again be it a tad quicker :-)

  6. #6
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    This is great info and the support page has tons of stuff on it. Thanks a bunch!

    It sounds like I need to worry about the engine and fuel filter first and then go from there. I'll clean it all this weekend and start with the WD-40 in the engine. Get some gas in and and see if I can get it running. I'll definitely be back here with an update!

    Also, it sounds like $50 was a good deal for this thing. What should I look to put into it just to have it running well? And if it won't start or has lots of issues where should I cut my losses at and just buy new?

    Thanks again for the tips!

    Chris

  7. #7
    RC Qualifier
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    I wish I was in your shoes!! 50 bucks for a tmaxx is nothing its like u got a free one even if engine is no good. I had to buy a new one since I could not find a deal in craigslist.... People wanted like 300 bucks for an old 2.5 and they were set in the price. So I got my new tmaxx 3.3 4907 newest one, a quart of traxxas fuel, 5 packs of traxxas aa batteries, and an extra glow plug all for 489 with a promo code from mammothhobbies. I do like the fact that mine I got it new and has the latest electronics.

  8. #8
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Wildman4910's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigdog95325 View Post
    This is great info and the support page has tons of stuff on it. Thanks a bunch!

    It sounds like I need to worry about the engine and fuel filter first and then go from there. I'll clean it all this weekend and start with the WD-40 in the engine. Get some gas in and and see if I can get it running. I'll definitely be back here with an update!

    Also, it sounds like $50 was a good deal for this thing. What should I look to put into it just to have it running well? And if it won't start or has lots of issues where should I cut my losses at and just buy new?

    Thanks again for the tips!

    Chris
    If it's really trashed I would say cut your loss & buy a new one.

    That being said if the trucks in good shape & it's just a bad/worn out engine, buy a new engine($100 or so).

    I would definitely get a 2~4 new glow plugs, a new airfilter foam(toss the old one), new fuel, fresh batteries(both in the TX&RX) line to start with.

    WD the engine & see if it will free up, swap in the above new parts & give it try.


    Got a pic of this truck so we can tell you what model # the truck is?
    It can make a difference when ordering parts.
    Look out for the tree/crunch!

    LiPo? Naw NITRO!!

  9. #9
    RC poster
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    Jun 2013
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    Here come a couple pics. One with the body on, one wit hit off...and one with what looks like a gas tank that wasn't emptied. Which I assume is going to cause a lot of headaches?





    [IMG][/IMG]

    [IMG][/IMG]

    Last edited by Double G; 01-02-2014 at 07:23 PM. Reason: merge

  10. #10
    RC Turnbuckle Jr.
    Join Date
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    BC, Canada
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    1. Go over the entire truck by eye/feel and check for any damaged parts.
    2. Replace the battery pack if you haven't already
    3. Install a failsafe if the truck doesn't have one
    4. Check the two servos for functionality
    5. Pull the gas tank out and wash it in warm soap water. Rinse it well and let it dry
    6. Put a fresh air filter foam in there. Either wash/oil the old one or get a new one and oil it (you'll want lots of spares for your pit box anyway)

    Like others have said the engine is going to be the biggest thing here. If you can rotate the flywheel and it feels smooth and has some compression it will probably run. Buy some glow plugs and fuel and fire it up!

    I had a nitro engine sit in my shed for over 3 years without being started once. The thing fired up within 2 minutes and ran great. It was by no means a nice engine when I put the truck away either.

    The biggest thing with nitro maintenance is making sure your sleeve doesnt cool down with the piston at top dead center (TDC). The easiest way to avoid this is mark your flywheel with a dot using some nail polish. What you want to do is rotate the flywheel by hand until you can feel the piston reach the top of the sleeve. Then rotate the flywheel some more until you can feel the piston drop out of TDC and head down the sleeve. Mark the flywheel with your nail polish.

    Every time the dot on your flywheel is where you marked it in its rotation you know that the piston isn't at TDC. So when you shut your truck off simply rotate the flywheel until the dot is where it needs to be. This of all things will save your engine the most in the long run.

    For me I marked my flywheel at 9 o'clock. So when is shut the engine off I simply rotated the flywheel to 9 o'clock and let the engine cool down.

    Enjoy!
    complete n00blet

  11. #11
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    OK, so I spent the last couple evenings messing with this truck. I went to the local hobby store for glow plugs and got some advice as well.

    The fuel tank and lines are all flushed and clean. The truck is all clean and it looks close to new other than a couple scrapes.

    Today I sprayed some carb cleaner (hobby store recommendation) into the engine and was able to free up the flywheel. It now spins freely...for the most part.

    It's very hard to spin counterclockwise (truck facing away from me) and shoots carb cleaner from the air filter hole going that way.

    Going clockwise, it feels like it has 2 sticking points next to each other that are hard to turn past but the rest of it spins freely. When looking into the engine, it appears the 2 sticking points are both right when the piston is at the top. Maybe right before and after?

    So is this normal or is it a sign of a big problem? Should I just keep spinning with a little more carb cleaner? The hobby store said after it was freed up to pour out the carb clear and then rotate it with some oil they gave me. Should I do that now instead?

    I can post pics if there's anything that will help. Thanks!

  12. #12
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    Actually that's a good thing. It means the motor still has pinch so compression should be good when the motor heats up. I would get some light oil or even better, wd40 and pull the motor apart and really clean it. Lube the bearings and the cylinder with the light oil and reassemble and it will be ready to fire.
    Revo 3.3, EMBE 6s, ERBE 6s (x2), Summit 4s

  13. #13
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    Is it worth taking apart to clean if my plan is just to sell it? Could I just put some oil in it and then get it running? Or would that be really bad for it?

  14. #14
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Nitronaught's Avatar
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    If you were buying an RC wouldn't you prefer seeing a clean RC compared to one that's dirty? IT may even sell for a little more...

    Once you get things sorted tuning skills are an acquired skill set. This will help you on your way..

    Viewed over 100,000 times!!!! Guess it works... http://traxxas.com/forums/showthread...ul-Tuning-tips

    At this point You really haven't tested what you have. There may be underlying issues. You'd be surprised how many people advertise their RC only having a gallon or so through the engine and it runs fine when it actually has no compression left and needs a rebuild.... It really hurts the resale value of an RC when this happens as much as it does... Many newbies get nailed on those....
    Founder of H.U.A.
    I spent What??

  15. #15
    RC poster
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    Oh, I totally cleaned the truck. It's near spotless now and looks new other than a couple scuffs. I'm just wondering if it's worth taking apart the engine and rebuilding it. I'd rather just get it started and sell it but if it needs it, I'll do it.

    And I know for a fact it's had just a hair under a bottle of fuel through it. I was there when he bought it and he gave me the original bottle with a tiny bit still in it. So in theory, it should be a nice truck for someone who wants to mess with it. I'm thinking gas isn't for me and I want to get an electric.

  16. #16
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Nitronaught's Avatar
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    You can ruin any RC nitro engine in a matter of 1-2 tanks of running too lean. Since the engine gets it's lubrication from the fuel, if the engine is ran too lean the engine will wear out, overheat, and fail.

    You can try checking the compression of the engine when the engine is cold and a glow plug is in. Then try turning the flywheel with your bare hands counter clockwise when facing the crank side of the engine. It should get difficult to rotate the flywheel when the pison reaches Top Dead Center. If the flywheel rotates with very little resistance once the piston reaches the top, chances are the compression is shot which would mean a new piston and sleeve at the minimum.

    Also if you have an engine and you know you've got the tune right but it it wants to stall out and not keep running once warmed up,,, that's a sure sign of an engine that's lost compression as well.
    Founder of H.U.A.
    I spent What??

  17. #17
    RC poster
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    HI there! Glad to have you part of the community now. Don't worry, starters will become pros no sooner.

    Real Estate Moscow

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