RC4WD's new R2 Transmission

Text and photos by Jason Hensel

Until now when building a crawler we've all be stuck with either custom building our own transmissions, or scavaging one from an existing vehicle. Then along comes RC4WD with their new R2 transmission.
With it's all 10:1-30:1 ratio, all metal construction, flanged metal bearings, and billet aluminum housing it'll be sure to hold up to all we can dish out.
My only complaint with the tranny is that it was very hard to set the pinion mesh do to the fact that you couldn't actually see into the case. RC4WD has recognised this problem and already released the R2v2 that has a gear mesh window cut out for you.
In this picture you can see that on the motor side of the transmission RC4WD left the output shaft long so that there would be no problems with driveshaft interference.
For my application I chose to shorten that output shaft to match the other side, so I chucked it up in my lathe and cut away.
I also decided to drill holes in the shaft to accept the crosspins used with many popular driveshafts.
Here you can see the R2, all put back together with Jato shafts ready to be installed. Note the 4 mounting holes, the R2 has a total of 12 M3 threaded mounting holes on 3 sides to make fitting into your application a breeze.
Here you can see the R2 mounted snuggly into my 8X8 with a 45 turn lathe motor, ready to go tear up the rocks. With so many mounting options it works great, because I can now use those 4 additional holes to mount a skid plate.

Out on the rocks the R2 is great, it's quieter than any other transmission I have used and with it's all metal construction I know I don't have to worry about breaking it. RC4WD addressed one of my complaints by adding the access window, but I would like to see them offer the R2 in the future with a pre-shortened output shaft, I'd also like the shaft predrilled for the driveshaft set screw. With the wide gearing ratio you can select and the multiple mounting points the R2 tranny would make a great addition to any shaft driven rig. It's super small size also makes it great for hiding in those cool scale builds.

I'll give the R2 tranny a 9 out of 10, I already ordered another one for my next comp rig.

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