R/C Mania : Crashed

A few days ago, I bought myself a hobby – grade Traxxas Rustler R/C car. A few days after my purchase and unboxing, I crashed it. My Rustler was going at a high speed when it crashed into a metal sprinkler pipe, which was in the car’s way and I didn’t notice. The right suspension arm crashed into the pipe, and instead of snapping the arm into two, the force of the crash literally yanked the suspension link right out of its socket on the gear box, leaving one out of two suspension arm sockets broken. I immediately started the dismantling of my car to restore it back to it’s original glory.

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To start off with the repair, I removed the body. Then, I removed the rear wheels with a hex nut tool supplied with the car. To extract the gear box, I would have to separate the entire rear assembly from the chassis to proceed with the repair. Fortunately, the rear assembly was held to the chassis by only 10 screws, and not some complex removal setup. The rear comprised of a large support frame, two shock absorbers, two suspension arms, a motor, driveshafts, camber arms and the gear box.

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To begin dismantling, I first removed the support frame by unscrewing 4 screws; 2 connected to the gear box and 2 connected to the chassis. Then I removed both shock absorbers to keep the driveshafts, suspension and camber arms free and separate the support frame. Then, I flipped the car over and unscrewed 6 screws holding the gear box to the chassis. When that was done, I removed the camber arms connected to the support frame and driveshaft holders to isolate the support frame as well as motor from the gear box. Then, I removed the gear box, complete with driveshafts from the chassis. Now, it was time to dismantle the gear box.

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I first removed the main spur gear which sent circular kinetic energy to the depths of the gear box so that the driveshafts are driven. I also removed a friction disc assembly connected to the spur gear on the same axle. After that, I removed the motor from its mount. Then, I removed the undamaged suspension arm from the undamaged gear box half, because the other half was already extracted due to the crash. How convenient of the impact force to forcefully remove the suspension arm from the holder so I could repair it. There was 1 hex screw on each driveshaft, which made sure that the gear box could not be halved. I removed both screws and disconnected the driveshafts from the gear box. Time to get my gloves on, because the next disassembly was going to be greasy.

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The spur gear is the large gear to the right
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The friction disc assembly was behind the spur gear
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Removing the driveshafts was a delicate job
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Thankfully, I completed that job without hassle

True to my word, I put my gloves on. To open up the gear box, I had to remove 8 screws. I did that, then I halved the gear box. There were 3 gears. 2 were on the undamaged side and 1 was on the damaged side. I gently extracted the gear on the damaged side and slotted it onto the undamaged side. Fortunately, the spur gear axle was connected to the undamaged side. So, with all the machinery on the undamaged half of the gear box, I discarded the other part. I then ordered a gear box shell, suspension arms and screws from Amazon. Screws, because the screw holding the arm was twisted to an extreme angle after the car crashed. And then, I waited.

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A simple, but greasy affair

When my parts arrived, I first put a half of the new gear box shell which corresponded to the old gear box shell half. Then, I screwed and installed every item I took off. With crossed fingers, I plugged in the battery, turned on the remote, closed my eyes and squeezed the throttle. Come on, I was anxious! And it worked! Now, the car is back to its original state, and it is ready to be driven for days again!

Note : This repair was not scripted by the company that created this R/C vehicle. I myself learned about the parts and functions and did whatever I could to repair my item. There is probably an easier and much quicker method to be found.

Well, that’s it! I repaired my R/C and it is ready to run once again!

I will end this post here. I will write more about cars and parts. Stay tuned.

Happy Driving!

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