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Old 09-25-2017, 02:29 PM   #1
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Default Jato The Trail Finder 2 - Leaf Spring Mafia Edition

I've always been a fan of leaf spring trucks. Blame it on growing up in the 80's with the awesome square bodies of the day. The ease of installing suspension lifts and big tires was another reason. This is probably why I love my GMade Sawbacks so much. Because of the leaf springs, a TF2 has always been on my radar, but for some reason it always got pushed behind other truck kits. But that has ended now as I have a TF2 Mojave II kit on the way.

I even acquired 1.55 wheels for my future TF2 build over a year ago. And then with the recent Pitbull RC sale I picked up the 1.55 Rock Beast tires. I'm a huge fan of these in 1.9 so I'm sure I'll love them just as much in 1.55, especially with the new Alien Kompound.

Here are the Pitbull Rock Beasts on Motoworx Racing 10-Hole wheels. It's not often you start with wheels and tires, but I can't get enough tires and wheels so it's fitting for me.

I plan on making this truck look like a streetable truck that an average person would have lifted and put bigger tires on back in its day. Outside of that I have no direction in mind - no paint color(s), no upgrades, no electronics...nothing.

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Old 09-25-2017, 02:43 PM   #2
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Default Re: Jato The Trail Finder 2 - Leaf Spring Mafia Edition

hey, you've got to start somewhere, and those are some really nice rims and tires.
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Old 09-25-2017, 07:46 PM   #3
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Default Re: Jato The Trail Finder 2 - Leaf Spring Mafia Edition

Well I'll be... Did I see airborne swine? Jato voluntarily purchased a TF2? In all seriousness, the wheels and tires are a great start, and I look forward to seeing your build.
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Old 09-26-2017, 02:18 AM   #4
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Default Re: Jato The Trail Finder 2 - Leaf Spring Mafia Edition

Can't wait to see it come together. I love my 1.55 rock beasts so far. You're literally building this one from the ground up!

Ben
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Old 09-26-2017, 06:23 AM   #5
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hey, you've got to start somewhere, and those are some really nice rims and tires.
Thank you! I had to have these wheels when I saw them for sale here in the classifieds. I'm not normally a fan of black wheels because I think black wheels on black tires can be a bit too much, but we'll see if I continue to like these once installed on the truck.

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Well I'll be... Did I see airborne swine? Jato voluntarily purchased a TF2? In all seriousness, the wheels and tires are a great start, and I look forward to seeing your build.
Nope. That was the ghost of Evel Knievel jumping his hog in the sky!

Just because I am critical of brands and products doesn't mean I don't like them nor does it mean I won't run them.

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Can't wait to see it come together. I love my 1.55 rock beasts so far. You're literally building this one from the ground up!

Ben
The small 1.9 Rock Beasts are one of my all-time favorite tires. I'm sure they kick ass.

Yes, I guess I am building from the ground up.


The TF2 kit is supposed to be here Wednesday. I'm also getting a Tamiya kit Wednesday or Thursday so I might start with that build as I acquire all of the stuff needed for the TF2.

One of my big decisions is the color of the body. I've been looking through the gallery trying to decide on one color. This is a tough decision for an indecisive person like myself!

So far the only "upgrade" I've ordered for the TF2 kit is a stainless steel hardware kit from Team KNK. One of my friends, who is a Gelande II nut and TF2 owner said that RC4WD's hardware isn't the best.

What I gathered from reading the TF2 guides is that the driveshafts are the biggest weak spot. Are the RC4WD Punisher shafts durable? MIP is always pricey. I've had good luck with Junfac. I just have to decide the brand and figure out the needed lengths and order up.

Are the RC4WD XVDs the only CVDs available for the TF2?

I think the hardware, driveshafts, and CVDs will be the only upgrades I start with. But I'm open for other suggestions if there are "must haves" to install right away.
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Old 09-26-2017, 07:17 AM   #6
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Default Re: Jato The Trail Finder 2 - Leaf Spring Mafia Edition

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Originally Posted by JatoTheRipper View Post
What I gathered from reading the TF2 guides is that the driveshafts are the biggest weak spot. Are the RC4WD Punisher shafts durable? MIP is always pricey. I've had good luck with Junfac. I just have to decide the brand and figure out the needed lengths and order up.

Are the RC4WD XVDs the only CVDs available for the TF2?

I think the hardware, driveshafts, and CVDs will be the only upgrades I start with. But I'm open for other suggestions if there are "must haves" to install right away.
The RC4WD Punishers other than the v3 have been fairly durable for me, but the Junfacs have been even better (they've actually held up better for me than MIPs). I've heard good things about Hot Racing and Boom Racing shafts from multiple friends, but I haven't tried either.

The only XVDs I know of are the RC4WD versions. You get about 35 degrees of steering with them (better than stock), and durability is much better than stock. Of course, I'm partial to a completely different axle, but that's another story...

As for other upgrades, a high clearance skid is a must. Ours works very well, and RC4WD has a new one that should be pretty good, also. The other upgrade I'd call a must is G2 hoops in front with longer than stock shocks. I've been happy with my LWB setup -- G2 hoops with the kit rear 90mm shocks mounted in front, and the kit front 70mm shocks mounted in the rear on a straight upper shock mount instead of the raised mount. With internal springs removed and 3k diff fluid in the shocks, it makes for a good baseline setup. One thing to watch for with the stock shocks is the brass inserts in the lower mounts coming out. If (more like when) they do, they can be glued back easily enough.

Apart from those things, the rest of the platform is very robust. Enjoy the build!
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Old 09-26-2017, 07:22 AM   #7
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Default Re: Jato The Trail Finder 2 - Leaf Spring Mafia Edition

Leaf springs for the win. With 1.55 rockbeasts, and a daily driver at that.

Is it going to have TOY on the gate like everyone else did to their lifted 4 cylinders?
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Old 09-26-2017, 07:40 AM   #8
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The RC4WD Punishers other than the v3 have been fairly durable for me, but the Junfacs have been even better (they've actually held up better for me than MIPs). I've heard good things about Hot Racing and Boom Racing shafts from multiple friends, but I haven't tried either.

The only XVDs I know of are the RC4WD versions. You get about 35 degrees of steering with them (better than stock), and durability is much better than stock. Of course, I'm partial to a completely different axle, but that's another story...

As for other upgrades, a high clearance skid is a must. Ours works very well, and RC4WD has a new one that should be pretty good, also. The other upgrade I'd call a must is G2 hoops in front with longer than stock shocks. I've been happy with my LWB setup -- G2 hoops with the kit rear 90mm shocks mounted in front, and the kit front 70mm shocks mounted in the rear on a straight upper shock mount instead of the raised mount. With internal springs removed and 3k diff fluid in the shocks, it makes for a good baseline setup. One thing to watch for with the stock shocks is the brass inserts in the lower mounts coming out. If (more like when) they do, they can be glued back easily enough.

Apart from those things, the rest of the platform is very robust. Enjoy the build!
Junfacs have treated me well and they're cheap so maybe I'll go that route. Which set are you using? I believe I read the Axial Dingo set works on the TF2.

Your axles are awesome, but I want this truck to remain all metal.

Is the RC4WD low profile skid plastic or metal? I didn't know they had one of their own.

What do the G2 hoops buy you? More travel? I'll have to check out your LWB build thread assuming all of the info is in there.

The stock shocks - are they boingers or do they hold oil? I don't think anybody makes a small diameter, scale-looking shock that holds oil. At least not that I know of.

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Leaf springs for the win. With 1.55 rockbeasts, and a daily driver at that.

Is it going to have TOY on the gate like everyone else did to their lifted 4 cylinders?
Ha. I'll probably do the full TOYOTA, but we shall see. TOY would be period-correct.
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Old 09-26-2017, 09:26 AM   #9
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Default Re: Jato The Trail Finder 2 - Leaf Spring Mafia Edition

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One of my big decisions is the color of the body.
These bodies look great in orange - which would look badass with your wheel choice. White body with orange pinstriping would be my choice!

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One of my friends, who is a Gelande II nut and TF2 owner said that RC4WD's hardware isn't the best.
Your friend is right. The stock hardware is ridiculously soft - I have MIP tools and as long as you stay square and don't overtighten you can manage it, but it can and will strip easy. Other advice here - use loctite everywhere. Because the leafs make for such a bouncy ride, hardware tends to come loose.

Quote:
What I gathered from reading the TF2 guides is that the driveshafts are the biggest weak spot. Are the RC4WD Punisher shafts durable?
The stock driveshafts are a joke. You will get a good chuckle when you see/feel them. I know I did.

I ran the Punisher shafts on mine and they held up great!

Quote:
I think the hardware, driveshafts, and CVDs will be the only upgrades I start with. But I'm open for other suggestions if there are "must haves" to install right away.
If you can afford it, I'd suggest getting the HD diff gears as well. You can sell your stock stuff to help, it's worth it. I ran the K44 axles on mine, but my friend has a TF2 Yota with Yota axles and he's chewed up stock gear sets, but once he switched to the HD ones and shimmed properly he hasn't had any further issues.

Also invest in a low-profile skid. I ran the Bowhouse one from Shapeways and it was tough as nails and made a big difference for clearance. The stock one is brutal! Gelande II front shock hoops are worthwhile too, so you can run a longer shock up front (most run 90mm, some 100mm). The stock hoops and 70mm shocks don't offer much/any travel. The rest of the truck is very stout.

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Originally Posted by JatoTheRipper View Post
The stock shocks - are they boingers or do they hold oil? I don't think anybody makes a small diameter, scale-looking shock that holds oil. At least not that I know of.
The stock shocks look nice but don't offer anything for performance, and of course they don't hold oil. I removed the inner springs but found that with the Blazer body the leafs didn't offer enough spring, which meant I was running full droop if you will. I added diff fluid to mine to help with dampening, but ultimately I ended up running them with just a few drops of oil for lubrication and put the inner springs back in. On the Blazer, it reacted just like a 1:1 would - bouncy as hell and kind of entertaining to watch.

Last edited by LSXGMC; 09-26-2017 at 09:31 AM.
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Old 09-26-2017, 11:35 AM   #10
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Junfacs have treated me well and they're cheap so maybe I'll go that route. Which set are you using? I believe I read the Axial Dingo set works on the TF2.
I'm pretty sure those are the ones I used. RC4WD has a handy chart showing you which Punishers work with which RC4WD trucks, and it can help you figure out lengths for other brands of shafts:
http://rc4wd.com/Doc/Shafts.pdf

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Your axles are awesome, but I want this truck to remain all metal.

Is the RC4WD low profile skid plastic or metal? I didn't know they had one of their own.
Thanks and lol re metal vs plastic. The RC4WD skid is Delrin. Ours is SLS nylon and has a bit more clearance. Boom Racing has an aluminum one, but aluminum grabs the rocks a lot more than Delrin or SLS nylon, so you won't see as much of an improvement there.

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What do the G2 hoops buy you? More travel? I'll have to check out your LWB build thread assuming all of the info is in there.
G2 hoops have 2 mounting holes, one that is 7mm higher than stock TF2 and one that is 12mm higher. Allows you to run a longer shock for more suspension travel. I like the upper hole with a 90mm shock in front.

I cover this in the TF2 guide on the RC4WD forum and also have a lot of suspension setup info in my 3 TF2 threads here.

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The stock shocks - are they boingers or do they hold oil? I don't think anybody makes a small diameter, scale-looking shock that holds oil. At least not that I know of.
Funny question. I've had some that hold oil for months, and some that don't. Some that held oil for a year until I cleaned and refilled tham, and then wanted to start leaking. So it's a bit of a mixed bag. I like 3k diff fluid and use green slime, which helps. But on trucks where I run the stock shocks, I just accept that more frequent refills may be needed.
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Old 09-26-2017, 11:50 AM   #11
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I'm pretty sure those are the ones I used. RC4WD has a handy chart showing you which Punishers work with which RC4WD trucks, and it can help you figure out lengths for other brands of shafts:
http://rc4wd.com/Doc/Shafts.pdf
Handy guide. Thanks!

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Originally Posted by new2rocks View Post
Thanks and lol re metal vs plastic. The RC4WD skid is Delrin. Ours is SLS nylon and has a bit more clearance. Boom Racing has an aluminum one, but aluminum grabs the rocks a lot more than Delrin or SLS nylon, so you won't see as much of an improvement there.
OK I will give yours a try. I assume I will also need your coupling bracket then. Is that correct?

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Funny question. I've had some that hold oil for months, and some that don't. Some that held oil for a year until I cleaned and refilled tham, and then wanted to start leaking. So it's a bit of a mixed bag. I like 3k diff fluid and use green slime, which helps. But on trucks where I run the stock shocks, I just accept that more frequent refills may be needed.
See that's not acceptable to me. A $400 kit should include shocks that hold oil if they're meant to hold oil. Seems like a great area to upgrade.

Are there any shocks, similar in diameter to the stock shocks, that are meant to hold oil and actually hold oil? I want oil shocks while retaining the scale appearance of the smaller diameter shocks.
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Old 09-26-2017, 11:59 AM   #12
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Default Re: Jato The Trail Finder 2 - Leaf Spring Mafia Edition

Your not going to find an oil filled shock that size that works properly. They hold oil just fine, but there isnt enough capacity to work.

I ran 5k wt oil in mine, about 1/2 full to prevent hydrolocking.
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Old 09-26-2017, 12:01 PM   #13
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I assume I will also need your coupling bracket then. Is that correct?
You only need the coupling bracket for the LWB model. The standard WB and SWB trucks don't have a coupling behind the t-case and therefore don't need the bracket.

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See that's not acceptable to me. A $400 kit should include shocks that hold oil if they're meant to hold oil. Seems like a great area to upgrade.

Are there any shocks, similar in diameter to the stock shocks, that are meant to hold oil and actually hold oil? I want oil shocks while retaining the scale appearance of the smaller diameter shocks.
Lol...the other narrow-bodied shocks from RC4WD (Emus and Superlifts) are better than the Ultimate Scalers but still not great at holding oil. There are a few medium-bodied shocks that seem to hold oil pretty well. Traxxas GTS (from the TRX-4) have been excellent so far, and GMade RSDs seem to be holding their oil well (though not as smooth as the GTS). Proline Scalers are decent (not great), as are RC4WD Kings and RRD Emulsions. But all of those are much wider than the Ultimate Scalers. I haven't tried anything from Boom Racing, so I couldn't tell you if they're any better.
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Old 09-26-2017, 12:05 PM   #14
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Lol...the other narrow-bodied shocks from RC4WD (Emus and Superlifts) are better than the Ultimate Scalers but still not great at holding oil. There are a few medium-bodied shocks that seem to hold oil pretty well. Traxxas GTS (from the TRX-4) have been excellent so far, and GMade RSDs seem to be holding their oil well (though not as smooth as the GTS). Proline Scalers are decent (not great), as are RC4WD Kings and RRD Emulsions. But all of those are much wider than the Ultimate Scalers. I haven't tried anything from Boom Racing, so I couldn't tell you if they're any better.
Well that's a bummer. I guess I'll start with the stock shocks and upgrade as I see fit. Leaf springs need good oil shocks to work well IMO.

I wish I had known I'd have this kit and need your skid plate when the free shipping promotion was still live at Shapeways.

EDIT: Well I was able to get the skid tacked onto my previous order so I did get free shipping. Cool.

So to start I'm doing the stainless steel hardware, Bowhouse skid plate, XVDs, Junfact driveshafts, and the GII front shock hoops. EDIT: Hoops are OOS everywhere so I guess I'm not getting those to start.

Which size shims should I have on hand for the axles, etc. for this truck?
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Old 09-26-2017, 03:29 PM   #15
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Well that's a bummer. I guess I'll start with the stock shocks and upgrade as I see fit. Leaf springs need good oil shocks to work well IMO.

I wish I had known I'd have this kit and need your skid plate when the free shipping promotion was still live at Shapeways.

EDIT: Well I was able to get the skid tacked onto my previous order so I did get free shipping. Cool.

So to start I'm doing the stainless steel hardware, Bowhouse skid plate, XVDs, Junfact driveshafts, and the GII front shock hoops. EDIT: Hoops are OOS everywhere so I guess I'm not getting those to start.

Which size shims should I have on hand for the axles, etc. for this truck?


Just a heads up, I see Amazon has the G2 shock hoops on stock right now. That's where I ended getting them last week.


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Old 09-26-2017, 03:38 PM   #16
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Just a heads up, I see Amazon has the G2 shock hoops on stock right now. That's where I ended getting them last week.


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Thank you. I avoid Amazon like the plague, but maybe I'll make an exception this time.

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Old 09-26-2017, 03:43 PM   #17
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Thank you. I avoid Amazon like the plague, but maybe I'll make an exception this time.

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I get that. No prob. Btw, I have an issue maybe you could help me with. Can you please look under the TF2 thread and see my "Steering linkage/suspension issue". I actually should have called it Panhard/suspension issue. I just cannot figure what the issue is. Thanks.


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Old 09-26-2017, 04:47 PM   #18
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I get that. No prob. Btw, I have an issue maybe you could help me with. Can you please look under the TF2 thread and see my "Steering linkage/suspension issue". I actually should have called it Panhard/suspension issue. I just cannot figure what the issue is. Thanks.


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It looked like normal bump steer to me. But I'm not a TF2 expert since I don't have one yet.

I found the hoops and XVD on Horizon Hobby's website so I ordered from there instead.

Now I'm going to size the Junfac driveshafts.
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Old 09-27-2017, 06:36 AM   #19
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Default Re: Jato The Trail Finder 2 - Leaf Spring Mafia Edition

Today is TF2 day. I won't begin the build today though. I'm waiting on parts and the Tamiya TA02T that is coming tomorrow will be built first.

I ordered the Bowhouse low-profile skid plate, GII front shock hoops, Junfac Dingo driveshafts, and XVDs.
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Old 09-27-2017, 05:40 PM   #20
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Well I wasn't that excited until it got here. I said I was going to wait. I couldn't resist.

4 quick questions before I forget.

1. Does the shackle dimple go inside (towards the other half of the shackle) or outside? See photo below.

2. Stock foams are soft. They seem too soft. Are they? I plan on running the stock single stage foams in my 1.55 Rock Beasts, but they seem too stiff.

3. Does anybody put silicone, RTV, etc between the front and rear of the axle halves?

4. I am using blue thread lock everywhere to this point while building the frame rails. Is this OK or do you put red Loc-Tite everywhere?




Last edited by JatoTheRipper; 09-27-2017 at 06:07 PM.
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