Rock Candy RCCs Jessica Downing joins the Axial Rock Crawling Competition Team

Jessi Downing Joins Axial Inc.,
April 29, 2011- Irvine, CA – Axial is pleased to announce that accomplished rock crawler, Jessica Downing, has joined the Axial Rock Crawling Team.

Downing will be driving the Axial XR10 with Hardline Body in competition at various events for the remainder of 2011, such as: Axial AWCC, Red Rocks, RCC Nationals and the AZ Summer Shoot Out.

“Jessi (as most refer to her), will be another great addition to the Axial team. She is one of those people that everyone loves to be around. She always has a great attitude and goes out of her way to help anyone in need. Axial is very excited to have Jessi as a team driver!” said Brad “Bender” Dumont, Axial Team Manager.

Jessica is the co-founder of Rock Candy RCC [], an organization that introduces girls to R/C Rock Crawling while also performing charity work for cancer research. The Rock Candy girls build custom rock crawlers, sell raffle tickets for the crawlers and give 100% of the proceeds to cancer research.

Jeff Johns, Axial Inc President, added, “We are thrilled to have Jessica on our Axial Team. Jessica has grown to be one of the top female drivers in the country through hard work and commitment to being the best.”

Jessi was among the top 15 drivers from collective Southwest Regions of 2.2 competition organizations in 2010; SoCalRCRC, OCRCRC, and SDRCRC in particular. These regional shootout events qualify competitors for the coveted Nationals invite. Some of Jessi’s accomplishments also include:

2010: 1st Place 1.9 Championship – SoCalRCRC
2010: 1st Place 1.9 Class – Summer Shootout
2009: 1st Place 1.9 Championship – SoCalRCRC
2009: 3rd Place 1.9 Utah State Championships in 2009.

About Axial Inc: Founded in 2005, Axial, Inc. has quickly climbed to the top of the R/C market by offering a dynamic line of class-leading radio control chassis and accessories for the entire scope of the hobby, from novice users to competitors. Every component of our product line is researched and developed to offer superior performance, durability, and style. A true lifestyle brand, Axial is regularly involved in local and national events which allow us to keep our finger on the pulse of the RC culture. We’re feeling the love in return, earning coveted awards including “Truck of the Year” (Radio Control Car Action 2008), “Best Product” ( 2007 – People’s Choice), and “Most Innovative Product” ( 2007; RC Car Action 2008 – People’s Choice).

Axial Team Drivers
Jake Wright – California
Jessica Downing – California
Don Hughes – California
Dean Hsiao – California
Jason Rioux – Colorado
Becky Barger – Colorado
Yoshiaki Kataoka – Japan
Patrick Norton – Texas
Ed Rappleye – Utah
Zach Chatelain – Utah
Brian Parker – Nevada
Thom Kowatch – Nevada
Ryan Gerrish – Oregon

Brandon’s SCX10 Unimog Build

Mercedes Unimogs

I have a fascination with Unimogs, these seemingly unstable and over sized trucks.  The places they can go and terrain they are capable of traversing is incredible.  Not to mention how cool they look when you see one out on the trail or even the streets.

I had the opportunity to pick up one of these Unimog 406 bodies from a friend of mine and I started planning a build using the SCX10 Dingo RTR as my starting platform.

First thing I did was paint the body.  I took some random shrubbery  and mixed paint to create a scale camo paint scheme on the outside of the body.  The inside of the body is painted rust and backed with black.  Hopefully it wears well after some good use.

I also made a custom light bar using some parts from the new Axial Wraith AX90018.  The locations to mount two outside lights were already there, all I had to do was add a the 3 middle lights.  Axial’s Simple LED system from the Dingo along with a new 5 LED string powers this light bar.  I used the oval fog lights from the AX80045 Light bucket sets.  To finish off the body I installed a snorkel that I had in my random box of scale goodies.

The Dingo Chassis was modified slightly.  I cut about 1.25″ off the back of the frame and shortened the rear wheelbase about0.25″.  The front suspension received a Hand Bros CMS kit.  The factory shocks were replaced with a set of Pro-Line Scale shocks.  All the original Dingo bumpers and rock sliders were removed. A Futaba S9156 handles the steering duties, with 300+ oz/in it should be more than enough.  The front bumper was kept very simple, just a piece of 1/8″ rectangle stock and 1/4″ round steel brazed together and bolted on.  I also installed a fair-lead that is recessed to keep it from getting too banged up.

The Dingo chassis also received the following Axial Option Parts:

AX30549 Aluminum links pack

AX30495 & AX30496 Aluminum C Hubs and Steering Knuckles

AX30464 Universal Set

Next I started on the rear cage structure.  I wanted to keep it as simple as possible and my main goal was to hide the transmission.  The cage also has some diamond plate styrene integrated into it for the flatbed section and transmission cover.  The finished cage received a coat of black paint and a waterproof receiver box from the AX90018 Wraith.

With the new rear cage/flat-bed installed I got everything wired up.  The box on the rear between the shock towers holds a Tekin FXR.  I also moved the Axial battery plate and mounted it perpendicular to the chassis and as low as I could get it without interfering with the Drive shaft.  This allows me to run a very high capacity 2S or 3S lipo.  My battery of choice is the MaxAmps 2S 6500mah LiPo.

Final assembly required some custom front body mounts.  The upper body mounts are integrated into the top bar of the rear cage and the front body mounts are shifted forward with a piece of bent aluminum stock (this will give me a good foundation for the interior in the future as well).

Cant forget the spare tire and tie downs!  Made from the wife’s hair ties and paperclips.

Final Pics, for now at least.  Scale builds never really end ;)  Thank you Axial Marketing for the awesome photo’s.

First run!  Thank you HB_Crawler for posting the pictures on SoCalRCRC.

Jeepspeed Cherokee Build

Some of you may recognize this build from the June 2011 issue of RC Driver magazine, page 28 to be exact. The guys over there did an article/interview with me about this build and how it came about. Now that the article is out and in circulation, we wanted to do a little update with more details here on our blog. If you want to read the article in RC Driver, this issue is now available at news stands.

If you haven’t seen the article, I built this SCX10 up to replicate a Jeepspeed Cherokee. I wanted to build a scale replica of the real thing using off the shelf parts that you could find at most hobby shops. Most people don’t associate the term “custom build” with the phrase “off the shelf parts.” But, with a little imagination you can build a one off custom truck with store bought goods. This build started life as an SCX10 Dingo, and the chassis/suspension is still relatively stock. Most of the customization went into the body on this particular build, since that is what most people see first. I started with a Pro-line Jeep Cherokee body, interior, scale accessories and their 1.9 Super Swamper SX tires. Since the 1:1 1700 class is limited to 33 inch tires, a smaller 1.9 tire looks the best for this style build.

For this particular article I am going to concentrate on a few of the scale details that went into this build. Aside from the Pro-line goodies, I also used an array of Axial parts on this build as well, like the narrowed Dingo roll cage, Dingo rear bumper, interior detail kit, exterior detail kit, Honcho bumper, Honcho spare tire mount, aluminum scale shocks, 4 link parts tree, light buckets, etc.

First thing we will cover is the scale interior, and what went into it. I decided to use black, orange and silver for my colors on this rig. So the interior was painted predominately black, with silver and orange highlights. Here you can see the narrowed Dingo roll cage sitting in place to sort out the mounting points. I measured the inside of the roof line on the Cherokee body to determine the width I needed first, then cut the center of the roll cage as needed.


To mount the cage I used Axial’s rubber shock bump stops at the base of the cage. Then, used long M3 screws to tie everything together once the placement was dialed in.


More interior detail.


Custom fuel filler. I made this using black fuel line and a Great Planes nitro fuel line plug (Part #GPMQ4166) for a cap. Reamed a hole in the body smaller then the outer diameter of the fuel line, then pressed the assembly into place.


Next, I started working on the body. First thing I wanted to add was Axial scale fender flares, as most of the Jeepspeed Cherokee’s run a wide fender kit front, and/or rear. I did trim the fender flares back a little to give them more of a high speed look. Body scissors work great for trimming the flares as needed.



Here’s a little closer shot of the trimmed fender flares. Notice I cut the Cherokee fender wells back until the fender flares were even with the hood.


Once I moved the fender flares up level with the hood, and trimmed the Cherokee Lexan bumpers off, the front of the fender flares end up fairly short. This left me with no holes to mount the very front of the flares to the body. So, I drilled a hole through one of the “dummy” fasteners molded into the flare, then trimmed the head of the fastener off with an X-acto. Now, I can screw the front of the flares down to the body as needed.




I had to cut the backside of the fender flares into small pieces in order for it to not distort the body lines when everything was bolted up.


After installing the fender flares, I installed the interior to see if there were any clearance issues. Notice I had to cut part of the interior away to clear the backside of the fender flares.


Here you can see the internal roll cage pretty much sits against the roof line of the body, which should help keep the cab rigid during any high speed rollovers.


Another Pro-line accessory that I added was their roof rack. I installed a few Axial light buckets to customize it a little too.




Next I needed some bumpers. The stock Dingo rear bumper was a perfect fit for the Cherokee body. But, the front bumper isn’t really a desert style bumper. So, I decided to see if I could use a Honcho bumper instead. In order to give our Honcho bumper a little more of a pre-runner look, I cut the bottom of the wings off. Then, cut the aluminum inserts that fit the wings into small pieces to look like reinforcing gussets. Also added our big round lights and amber lenses while I was at it.



Once again I mocked everything up to ensure a proper fit. It can be a pain to keep assembling everything, just to tear it down again. But, it’s the only way to get everything exactly where it needs to be. Patience is your friend during these steps.




Once the roof rack was mounted and everything fit properly, it was time to start working on the paint job. I laid out the design I wanted as true to scale as I could. Then, weaseled my way into Brandon’s office to see if he could cut me some paint mask for the body. Thanks Brandon!


I just used basic rattle can paint on this build. After masking the windows and paint job, I gave the body a very light coat of black paint. To ensure the paint wouldn’t bleed under my mask, I let this first coat completely dry before I applied anymore paint. A light first coat, that is allowed to dry, is the best insurance for a clean paint job. That first light coat basically seals the paint mask to the body, and doesn’t allow later coats to bleed under.


Paint is done! I applied the black first, then the silver outline on the scallops, then the orange last. After that I went back and laid down another coat of black. This did 2 things, one it gives the orange paint a “burnt” look so it isn’t so bright. And two, it’s a pet peeve of mine to look inside a Lexan body to see the same color on the inside as the outside. So, I always back my paint jobs in black.


With the fender flares installed.


Shot of the scallops on the hood.


Applied all the stickers and it was time for another mock up.




The ride height looked a little tall to me, so I made some functional limiting straps out of shoe laces to lower the ride height a bit.


Last thing I did was install the spare tire and add the other scale accessories from Pro-line.



The final product……







Jake Wright joins the Axial Rock Crawling Competition Team

Jake Wright joins the Axial Rock Crawling Competition Team 500x332

April 25, 2011- Irvine, CA – Axial is pleased to announce that accomplished rock crawler, Jake Wright, has joined the Axial Rock Crawling Team. Wright will be competing with the Axial XR10-Hardline Body at the following events for the remainder of 2011 season: Axial AWCC, Vanquish Products presents: La Guerra en Rocas Rojo, USRCCA Nationals, AWCC Washington Qualifier, and the AZ Summer Shoot Out.

“Jake has been a vital part of the RC Rock Crawling scene,” said Jeff Johns, President of Axial Inc. “Wright is one of the top drivers in the world and an all around great guy. We are excited to be adding him to our Axial team.”

Brad “Bender” Dumont, Axial Team Director, also noted, “I have competed against Jake for years in the R/C Rock Crawling world. He is an incredible driver with nerves of steel. Wright has attended R/C Rock Crawling competitions all over the world and usually pulls off a podium finish. Honestly, I don’t know if I have ever met anyone as easy going and approachable as he is. Jake always has a smile on his face and is a great person to talk to. He [Wright] is always willing to help a fellow competitor out with advice on setups and driving also, no matter what level they are at. Jake will be a huge asset to the Axial Rock Crawling Team and we look forward to a long-term relationship with him.”

ABOUT JAKE WRIGHT: Jake began rock crawling in 2004 when he and his father got involved with 1:1 rock crawling vehicles. Later in 2005, Jake eventually began driving both RC and full-sized crawlers. His great skills have led him to crawling adventures in various parts of the world to compete, and have helped him achieve several commendable wins during the course of his crawling career:

2010: Utah State Championships – First Place
2010: Shamrock Showdown: – First Place
2010: Arizona Summer Shootout – First Place
2010: Motorama –
First Place
2009: Spanish Rock Crawling Nationals – Second Place
2009: Axial West Coast Challenge 
- Second Place
2009: SoCal RC Rock Crawlers Series -
First Place
2008: SoCal RC Rock Crawlers Series – First Place
2008: Utah State Championships -
 First Place
2007: Utah State Championships – First Place

About Axial Inc: Founded in 2005, Axial, Inc. has quickly climbed to the top of the R/C market by offering a dynamic line of class-leading radio control chassis and accessories for the entire scope of the hobby, from novice users to competitors. Every component of our product line is researched and developed to offer superior performance, durability, and style. A true lifestyle brand, Axial is regularly involved in local and national events which allow us to keep our finger on the pulse of the RC culture. We’re feeling the love in return, earning coveted awards including “Truck of the Year” (Radio Control Car Action 2008), “Best Product” ( 2007 – People’s Choice), and “Most Innovative Product” ( 2007; RC Car Action 2008 – People’s Choice).

Axial Team Drivers:
Jake Wright – California
Don Hughes – California
Dean Hsiao – California
Jason Rioux – Colorado
Becky Barger – Colorado
Yoshiaki Kataoka – Japan
Patrick Norton – Texas
Ed Rappleye – Utah
Zach Chatelain – Utah
Brian Parker – Nevada
Thom Kowatch – Nevada
Ryan Gerrish – Oregon

The AXIAL Geocache #1 – Found!

Axial Geocache #1-2011

Congratulations to Bob Hodges of Yucaipa, CA. for finding the first ever Axial Geocache #1

Axial Geocache #1 Finder Bob Hodges

Bob found Axial Geocache #1 on April 14th, 2011 at 2:30 pm. There had been other attempts made to find the Geocache, including some in the dark. Bob was the man in finding this cache and it was his first ever Geocache find. Not only did Bob find the Axial AX20024 Standard Socket Driver Set  and he also found some Axial Swag. By reporting back to us that he did find the Axial Geocache #1, we have also sent him a full set (6pcs) of Axial Metric Socket Drive Tips (4.5mm, 5mm, 5.5mm, 6mm, 7mm, 8mm).

Here are a few pics from his find:

Axial Geocache #1 Finder Bob Hodges
Axial Geocache #1 Finder Bob Hodges
Axial Geocache #1 Finder Bob Hodges
Axial Geocache #1 Finder Bob Hodges

Axial Geocahe #1 Original Post:

In our attempt to start a fun new GeoCache program, we put together a little package at the disclosed location below:

If you happen to be out and about scouting new places to run your rig, maybe you are in the neighborhood…

Here is the GPS Coordinate for the first ever Axialcache.
N34 23.230 W116 31.918 (it works dropped into googlemaps)

This cache is located off of Boone Rd in Johnson Valley OHV on the way to the famous Hammers Trails location or Means Dry Lake.

There is a rock pile off to the right side while driving North East on Boone Rd towards Means Dry Lake.

Once you find the box – What we want from you:

Name / Address / Email / phone

Photo of you and your Axial rig at the GeoCache site

Time / Date of when you found the AXL GeoCache site

What you get, if you do the above:

More prizes on top of the prize you will find!

PS: Photo above, think KOH and you are standing on it…


Wraith Ready-to-Run 1/10th Electric 4WD Rock Racer

Axial Wraith on the cover of RC Car Action Magazine Cover Date: June 2011
We just got these in the mail! The June issue of RC Car Action magazine has the Axial Wraith on the cover and reviewed by RCCA’s Editor-in-chief, Matt Higgins. Also to check out in this issue is the Axial SCX10 Honcho Competition-Ready Scale Crawler article written by Matt Higgins and the Axial SCX10 based project in the RockPile department written by Kevin Jowett.

Axial Wraith™ Ready-to-Run 1/10th Electric 4WD Rock Racer The Wraith™ Ready-to-Run 1/10th Scale Electric 4WD Rock Racer is another “FIRST” for Axial with the first and most realistic full tube-frame chassis design that is manufactured with high strength composite materials. The Wraith™ is built to go fast and is NOT JUST A LOW SPEED ROCK CRAWLER. The Axial Wraith™ changes the game with its impressive 1:1 scale looks, high-speed monster truck “bashability,” and technical “crawl” capabilities. The Wraith™ is the most versatile vehicle satisfying the needs of a wide range of enthusiasts! The realistic looks, drivability and ready-to-run ease make this vehicle the perfect blank canvas for the enthusiast looking for a vehicle to build upon. The Wraith™ can go in so many directions; desert sand, mountain trail runner, rock racer, mud bogger and any form of backyard bashing that can be dreamed up!

Within the 1:1 [full size] crawl & off-road race segments, overall tire diameters have been on the rise, literally and directly influencing the R/C crawl segment, thus this Axial Ripsaw reflects this attraction of flirting with rocks at speed with a compelling design that will give your rig the aggressive competition look and performance. R/C crawlers will clearly benefit with larger ground clearance where it counts as the Ripsaw measures 5.5″ [140mm] in diameter. This gives the lowest point on the 4X4 axle housing more clearance thus giving you many more tactical driving options in those sticky predicaments! Speaking of “sticky,” Axial offers the 2.2 Ripsaw in a R35 sticky rubber compound noted with a “white dot” on the outside carcass of the tire.

Axial Wraith Press Page

Axial Wraith Public Page

Axial Wraith YouTube Video

AXIAL Wraith Dark Tone


Rock Candy RCC and The Victory Junction Gang

Last year at the West Coast Championship finals the girls of Rock Candy RCC raffled off a completely built competition crawler, and a new in the box XR10. The girls donated 100% of the proceeds from the raffle to cancer research. This year the girls are going to be back at the Axial West Coast Championship finals with another charity raffle featuring more goodies from Axial. This year Axial has donated an XR10 kit and a newly released RTR Wraith to the cause.

“RockCandy RCC is once again raising funds for a good cause. This year we picked The Victory Junction Gang. Axial has stepped up again and donated an Axial XR-10 and an Axial Wraith for us to giveaway at the 2011 AWCC Finals. 100% of the profits will be donated to the Victory Junction Gang. Each $5 donation will receive a chance to win one of the rigs. Each person will receive a Victory Junction bracelet with their tickets. We may be adding some extra goodies with the rigs, more will be posted as we get closer to the Axial West Coast Championships. Victory Junction bracelets and tickets will be sold starting April 15th up until Saturday June 25th. At the 2011 AWCC Finals, names will be drawn at the awards ceremony, you do not need to be present to win. Please visit to learn about this great foundation.” Rock Candy RCC’s Mindy Howe

The girls of Rock Candy RCC, left to right Mindy Howe, Becky Barger and Jess Downing.

Thanks for everything you do ladies!! Axial is proud to be working with you again this year.

RD’s Adventures – Borrego Springs

I headed out Friday about 2:00 PM in an attempt to find a camp spot before the sun went down. I met up with a couple friends at Stater Bros in San Clemente for some last minute “essentials” and then started making our trek south to the 78 and across to Borrego Springs, CA. We opted for the Julian route to Borrego…. According to Google maps, it’s a 2h 45m journey and a nice scenic route that drops in to the desert floor with some pretty amazing views.


As we came to and through Ramona we had to face some slight rain and then some serious hail that was coming down pretty good.


We stopped for some gas and then proceeded to go for Julian, not sure if we were going to get some snow.


As we were headed out of Julian for Banner we found some turkeys on the side of the road.


And then I decided to chase them, check out the video.

We stopped at a turn out on Yaqui Pass Rd just past Tamarisk Grove Campground (Closed) to admire some of the blooming desert.


As Yaqui Pass Rd winds down to Borrego Springs the views that you get are as far as the eye can see. The weather was looking to be perfect for the weekend.


As we passed through the desert I was telling my friend about a side route of the S22 called the Truckhaven Trail and we noticed an RV that appeared to be stuck. We took the next turn out to the trail and back-tracked to the RV and sure enough it was stuck. Tail and trailer buried in the sand wash.


As we started talking to the guy, he said that he had already been stuck there for an hour and not one person came by. I told him that we saw him and knew he was stuck and that was the reason we came down the road. After we had talked for a bit it was agreed that he should not continue down the trail and should turn around and head back to the main road. What we thought would be a quick recovery using both Jeeps turned into an adventure in RV U-turns on a Jeep trail using straps, shovels, and snatch blocks that lead into the dark of night.





Once we finally got the RV turned around, we hitched his trailer up to Johnny’s Jeep and escorted the RV back to the main road. The guy was very thankful that we had stopped to help him so he could get back on his journey…. And so did we.


We made it to our canyon of choice, Coachwhip Canyon, and set out to find our camp spot for the weekend. I think it was around 9:00 pm when we found the spot that we liked and was time to set camp and get some grub in our bellies. Dinner Friday was a delicious BBQ chicken, baked potato and salad, and after that recovery we had a big appetite brewing. And I gotta say it turned out on the BIG TASTEY side of all dinners. After dinner we had some chill time so I figured I would work a little on my photographic time-lapse skills for a bit.


We were in a great place to wake up Saturday morning. The skies were clear, the sun was peaking over the canyon walls and the wind was nil. I brewed some coffee and headed out for a quick early AM hike up a canyon to catch a view and some sun.


We packed up the Jeeps for our outing that day and headed for one of my favorite spots, Fonts Point.



Next stop, Calcite Mine Area off the S22. This is a really cool place to be on a clear day as you can see all the way to Salton Sea and around to Borrego Springs. You can even see the entire Ocotillo OHV area from here. This was my first time coming to this location and I will be coming back.







Here’s a 360 video from the Calcite mine Area Plateau.

We stopped for lunch down in a canyon where we had the best deli sandwiches ever made, and then headed over to the Ocotillo Offroad Park. This is a new place that opened that is “enter at your own risk and don’t get stupid.”



We were pretty well tired out after cruising around the desert so we headed over to get some gas and then headed back for camp to relax a bit before dinner.



Saturday night’s dinner was kabobs, corn on the cob, and more salad…. We had been eating like kings this weekend, and then it was time to watch the stars and enjoy some much needed down time.


Sunday was upon us and we weren’t ready to head home yet. I know, let’s go to Coyote Canyon and have some of those kick but deli style sandwiches again… so we did.






And that brings us to a close for the weekend in Borrego Springs Desert State Park. The desert bloom time is a great time to go see the plant life that seems dead year round. It is by far my favorite time to go to the desert and take in the views and enjoy the down time. I look forward to making the trip again next year.

See the Axial Wraith Premiere at the Rebel Offroad Exhibit!

See the Axial Wraith™ at the official, exclusive premiere in the Rebel Offroad exhibit at Easter Jeep Safari, April 21-22, 2011! Easter Jeep Safari is the largest Jeep event in the world.

Easter Jeep Safari:

Moab, Utah

Rebel Offroad is proud to debut the world’s most hardcore R/C crawler/rock racer for the world’s most hardcore full size wheelers.

Rebel Offroad:

Axial Wraith™:


SCX10 KIT – Basic Beginners “How To” Build Video: 14-Episodes

Have you ever built a kit? Thinking about building your first kit? If you want to see what it takes to tackle a SCX10 KIT BUILD, you might want to check out this video build series.

Our buddy over at Team Fast Eddy has created a series of videos on Youtube while building his first #AX90014 SCX10 KIT w/Trail Honcho Body over the course of 14-seperate videos. He bills this build as an “Instructional Video Building the Axial SCX10 Page by Page from the manual.

So follow along as TeamFastEddy builds his his first SCX10 KIT and please note that while “Mr. TFE” may not always be politically correct, his build is thorough and he is not coming off as Mr. professional-know-it-all. It’s a simple and thorough follow-along build.

Follow along:
Build the Axial SCX10 #1 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #2 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #3 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #4 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #5 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #6 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #7 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #8 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #9 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #10 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #11 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #12 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #13 Page by Page

Build the Axial SCX10 #14 Page by Page