Monday, October 18, 2010

Tamiya TL01 Ford Focus Rally Conversion

INTRO: This is chilout3070's Ford Escort Rally. It started life as TL01 Castrol Supra. He originally built it to the TL01 XB (Extreme Build) spec's here. After a few teething problems the car was shelved. It sat for a while until he dropped it off at the RC Street Source garage to be converted to a rally car. We knew the car would be loaded as the owner is not shy about buying hopu-ps. The car was still very impressive as we had never seen a TL01 That someone put so much love into outside of the internet. The car showed up wearing the rare and very hard to find TL01 Lightweight Chassis Set. If that wasn't rare enough he also installed the Tamiya Long Suspension Arm Conversion, When you buy the conversion it also comes with a swaybar set for the front and the rear. The upgrades didn't end there, the car was also fitted with Tamiya's CVA shocks and alloy wheel hexes. GPM also provided an aluminum driveshaft, universals, and foam front bumper. The last upgrade we found on the car was a full set of bearings.

BUILD: Since our job was to make it rally worthy, we went to work raising the suspension. Once we got that dialed the car needed some off road traction. Tamiya's Rally Block tires fit the bill perfectly. To add a little bling bling the owner wanted to use chrome HPI Stock Car wheels, so we fit the rally treads to them and bolted them on. Of course we had to remove the Tamiya TL01 Speed tuned gearset the owner installed and drop the stock gearing back in to get those big tire spinning and get some torque to the ground to get up steep inclines. Power is also need to spin tires and the Traxxas 20T Stinger motor we installed provided plenty. The no-name Chinese esc the owner was using seemed up to the task of powering this beast, the one we put in the viper is still doing well. The final step was to change the body posts to fit the escort body and detail it. There is a point of contention with those. The owner like long body posts. We like to cut them down. His argument is he may want to change bodies down the road. We say, body posts are $6. The customer is always right so they're long.

PERFORMANCE: The car rips! Take it into the dirt and it throws rooster tails everywhere. I could slide it around a corner and flick the tail around on command. It was very stable with only a hint of push on the pavement. All in all I would consider this car a success. So much so I have most of the same parts to build my own rally TL01. If I were to build it again I would have used shorter spring with spacers so it could be easily lowered for tarmac, and cut down the body posts. I am trying to coordinate a bash session with the owner to get some action shots.

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