5 Things Every RC Car Should Include

Oct 29, 2010 2 Comments by

What Should Be In Every Box

By Kevin Hetmanski

We get a lot of different vehicles here at the RC Car Action office, and while the cars and trucks keep getting better and better, there are still times where we’re scratching our heads and wondering why some simple items aren’t included. It doesn’t matter if it’s a RTR or a kit, there’s often always something or some feature that is need complete the build or just a mainstay. Read on to see what we picked as our top 5 must-have items that should be included in all RTR or kit vehicles.


Ball bearings
Yes, it’s true that there are still vehicles out there that don’t include ball bearings. Today’s ball bearings are super cheap and there’s really no reason to not include them. With bushing equipped vehicles, you lose speed and efficiency due to the friction between the bushing and the parts that they are supporting. When the bushings wear out you run the risk of damaging the parts that they support because they are no longer held in the correct position. The biggest problem with bushings is that they are a pain to replace once the vehicle is built. You have to dissemble a majority of the vehicle to get them out. When you build a kit that includes bushings, save yourself some time and potentially some money and just purchase the bearings up front. That way you can install them while you build your vehicle.


Decent tools
“Tools” are included with pretty much every vehicle out there but a majority of them are pretty much useless. Have you ever tried to use one of those L-shaped hex wrenches to remove or install screws on your vehicle? You end up hurting your fingers and stripping screws because of their poor quality and fit. The small 4-way wrenches that are included is just as frustrating to use. The first thing you should do when you get into this hobby is go out and pick up a set of good hex wrenches and nut drivers; you’ll be glad you did. Just about any set will be a thousand times better than what you get with your vehicle. We need some of these companies to start including some decent tools in the boxes. Maybe they can start molding handles and including inserts for those handles so you can properly use the tool.


Shock fluid

If you get a setup sheet that recommends fluids for the diffs or shocks, then that fluid should be included in your kit. It’s a real bummer to build a kit and have to stop at step 1, or halfway through your build because those recommended fluids aren’t included. Then you go to the hobby shop and get the fluids that you need, and if you own a nitro vehicle, you’ll find out when you get to the end of the manual that you need to go back out and get air filter oil. Yes, some of you may not use the fluids that are included in the box but at least you’ll know that ahead of time and will either have it at your work bench or will pick it up when you purchase your vehicle.


2.4GHz radio

At this point there’s no reason why a RTR shouldn’t include a 2.4GHz radio. We are amazed when we get vehicles that are either exceptionally fast or large scale and they don’t include 2.4GHz. 2.4GHz systems are inexpensive enough to produce these days and are safer to use for the newbie because of the lack of frequency conflicts. Now you can go outside with your buddies, turn on your radio and go instead of waiting for someone to get off the frequency that you’re on. The other great thing about 2.4GHz is that a lot of them now use less voltage than the crystal equipped radios of the past so you end up saving money in the end. The good thing is that there is a shift in RTR radios happening and hopefully we will see 2.4GHz radios in all RTR boxes very soon.


AA batteries

The way we see it is, if you can include a 6-cell battery pack and a wall charger, there’s no reason to not include AA batteries for the transmitter and receiver for you nitro guys. That’s just one less thing that you have to pick up in order to get up and running. We want to play and play now! Even if the AA’s are cheap and quickly die, we instantly have a smile on our face when they are included.

Honorable Mentions:

Blank Setup Sheets

Suspension Tuning Tips

Troubleshooting Guide

Maintenance Schedule

10-year, 100,000-mile Warrenty (OK, now we’re getting carried away)

Online Exclusives

About the author

Radio Control Car Action is the #1 RC magazine. More readers trust RC Car Action to provide them with the latest information and newest product reviews than any other RC publication. Published by Air Age Media, the largest multi-media company dedicated to enthusiasts of radio-control cars, planes and boats, aviation and diecast collecting, RC CAR Action is distributed around the world. With its network of six category-leading magazines plus special issues, books, DVDs, 10 websites, The Radio Control Show (a weekly web broadcast) and RCX, the world’s largest radio control expo, Air Age Media reaches more than one million drivers, fliers and collectors.

2 Responses to “5 Things Every RC Car Should Include”

  1. Anthony Lobaito says:

    Hells yeah! You guys hit it on the head. The only thing I would add is tire glue. The factory glue doesn’t always hold up with the new torque from the brushless motors. So you can have all that stuff but as soon as you rip a tire off it don’t mean much.

  2. Toby Zhang says:

    I think a set of shims is also important. Some company includes them, Tamiya usually don’t. But regardless, I find it most frustrating having to hunt down all the needed shims.

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