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Dec 03, 2012, 06:36 PM
Registered User
Question

Buying my first RC Car - Traxxas Rustler XL-5 (or VXL)


After researching a few weeks for a nice RC car I made my mind and will buy a Traxxas Rustler XL-5. It's in my budget but since the stock battery & charger are NIMH I know I will have to add some extra $70-100 just for that.

So far I have on my list:
- Hobby King: Turnigy 2S 30C 5000mAh for about $25.
- Hobby Partz: Thunder AC6 Smart LiPo Balance Charger/Discharger $40.

My total price would be around $280-300 for the Rustler XL-5. In case the motor burns quickly (as I've read on other threads) I would quickly have to add other $$.

Now I can buy a VXL with NiMH for about $320 or with 3200mAh Lipo for about $350 (plus a better battery it would go around $400).

Is there any difference in terms of durability between the XL-5 motor and the VXL?
What advice would you give in getting a new set of Lipo battery & charger?

Is it worth buying the XL-5 over the VXL just because the XL-5 is more affordable? What if I buy a XL-5 and later I want to upgrade it's motor to a brushless one ... is it possible?

Thanks.
Last edited by cristian9509; Dec 03, 2012 at 08:13 PM.
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Dec 03, 2012, 07:01 PM
Registered User
wparsons's Avatar
The VXL also has a much better transmitter/reciever. The XL5 is 27mhz AM, the VXL is 2.4ghz. The 2.4ghz is far superior in glitch resistance and is well worth it IMO.

Other than the motor/esc and transmitter/receiver, the cars are essentially identical. You used to get plastic gears in the gearbox with the XL5, but now it's the same metal gears as the VXL.
Old Dec 04, 2012, 09:20 AM
XRoombaX
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Dec 04, 2012, 09:57 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by wparsons
The VXL also has a much better transmitter/reciever. The XL5 is 27mhz AM, the VXL is 2.4ghz. The 2.4ghz is far superior in glitch resistance and is well worth it IMO.

Other than the motor/esc and transmitter/receiver, the cars are essentially identical. You used to get plastic gears in the gearbox with the XL5, but now it's the same metal gears as the VXL.
If I buy a XL-5 now, how much would it cost me to upgrade it to VXL? Would I go over the price of a new VXL? Are there many parts needed or just the motor and ESC?
Dec 05, 2012, 11:08 AM
Registered User
wparsons's Avatar
You would need the motor, esc, transmitter and receiver. Cost of the motor/ESC alone is probably enough to drive the cost of the XL5 + VXL motor/ESC above the cost of just getting the VXL to begin with.
Dec 06, 2012, 11:56 AM
Registered User
Thanks so much for the replies.
I probably made my mind for the VXL, but right now after looking for one I find myself with more questions. I've searched a few hobby sites and found more than one versions of Rustler VXL.

First option, a bit cheaper is around $310 and its Rustler VXL 3707 with TQ 2.4GHz radio system and NiMh battery.

However, there's another option around $340, Rustler VXL 3707 with the new TQi 2.4GHz radio system and NiMh batt.

The third would be a 3707L model with the new TQi radio system with Lipo batt and around $380.

Does anybody know what would be the difference between the regular TQ radio system and the new TQi? Is it worth paying the extra for the new radio system or it's the same thing with different name!

Regarding the battery, I will go for NiMh first and then upgrade to Lipo + charger later. Are TURNIGY batteries good? (they're very cheap).

Thanks again.
Dec 06, 2012, 12:28 PM
Registered User
wparsons's Avatar
The TQi is their new transmitter that comes with an iPhone/iPod dock so you can see telemetry data (if you get a telemetry capable receiver, and sensors), and program it easier. In all honesty, I don't think it's worth the extra cost since the regular TQ 2.4ghz is a very solid system.

I believe they have discontinued the model with the old TQ 2.4ghz system and replaced it with the TQi model, but everything else is the same so spare parts aren't a problem at all.

I've had really good luck with Turnigy and GensAce lipo packs.
Dec 06, 2012, 04:04 PM
Cranky old fart
Balr14's Avatar
Where are you located? I'd sell you my Rustler VXL cheap if it doesn't cost a fortune to ship it.
Dec 06, 2012, 08:15 PM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by Balr14
Where are you located? I'd sell you my Rustler VXL cheap if it doesn't cost a fortune to ship it.
Chicago, IL. Do you have any modifications made to it? Get me some more info.
Dec 07, 2012, 09:34 AM
Cranky old fart
Balr14's Avatar
Oh, that's about 100 miles. I have a Rustler VXL with about 2 hours usage, almost entirely on grass, so there's no damage of any kind. The body has some scrapes and scuff marks from sliding on pavement upside down. It is entirely stock with 2 7 cell nimh batteries.

I don't know if you would be interested, but I also have a Stampede VXL 4x4, modified to run 3 cell lipos. It has upgraded drive train, heat sink on motor, aluminum hex nuts and big bore shocks. I have two 3S 40C 5000 mah lipos. Total investment is about $700. It's in very good shape, except the body is bad from doing blow-over wheelies at 50 mph.

Both of these vehicles have been used twice this year. I have no place to use them.

I will post some pictures when I get a chance.
Dec 07, 2012, 09:43 AM
Registered User
Quote:
Originally Posted by Balr14
Oh, that's about 100 miles. I have a Rustler VXL with about 2 hours usage, almost entirely on grass, so there's no damage of any kind. The body has some scrapes and scuff marks from sliding on pavement upside down. It is entirely stock with 2 7 cell nimh batteries.

I don't know if you would be interested, but I also have a Stampede VXL 4x4, modified to run 3 cell lipos. It has upgraded drive train, heat sink on motor, aluminum hex nuts and big bore shocks. I have two 3S 40C 5000 mah lipos. Total investment is about $700. It's in very good shape, except the body is bad from doing blow-over wheelies at 50 mph.

Both of these vehicles have been used twice this year. I have no place to use them.

I will post some pictures when I get a chance.
No stampede for me now. It's too expensive at the moment. I want to start with Rustler because it is a bit more $$$ accessible.

So for the Rustler, do you have the TQ or TQi radio control?
Did you said you have 2 - 7 cell NiMh ... can you use them both in the same time? (I'm new to this so...)

And what about $$$?
Dec 07, 2012, 10:59 AM
Outdoor Extremist
rustlererad3's Avatar
i would buy the vxl and put it in training mode till you learn how to control it and then unleash all the power
Dec 12, 2012, 10:35 AM
Registered User
I love this forum ... I ordered my Rustler VXL and had almost paid extra if it were not for rcgroups. I found out the Tower Hobbies has some nice coupons if you purchase an annual membership and because of that my Rustler cost me only $295 + sales tax (living in IL is costly ).

My next thing would be to get some Lipo batt and charger. Any ideas on the charger?
Dec 12, 2012, 04:56 PM
Cranky old fart
Balr14's Avatar
Sorry I didn't get back to you. I got tied up with hassles over Christmas shopping. But, you did OK and you will like the Rustler. HobbyPartz sells decent batteries this should be good: http://www.hobbypartz.com/77p-sl4000...se-bullet.html. They have some nice chargers, too.
Dec 12, 2012, 09:02 PM
Registered User
Yeah, I need a real charger and Lipo. First in my list is the charger...
I see a on hobbypartz Thunder AC6 and Thunder AC680. Which should I go for? Or are there any other brands that I should research on?


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