AXIALFEST 2019 UPDATE!

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Axialfest 2019 UPDATE!

We are working around the clock to make Axialfest 2019 the best one yet! We have some incredible plans in the works, but we’ve hit a bump in the trail. As you are likely aware, our longtime home, the Cisco Grove Campground, is closed until further notice while undergoing a massive renovation and it looks like it won’t reopen until 2020.

Never fear! Axialfest will go on!

We are well underway in our search for a temporary home and will be making an announcement in early 2019 on the location, dates, and other details. We can’t wait to see you at Axialfest 2019!

Axialfest 2018 Skeeno Report Part 3

Axialfest 2018 Skeeno Report Part 3

In Part 1 of the Axialfest 2018 Skeeno Report, I showed you the sights and sounds of Day 1, or Wednesday, at Axialfest 2018. In Part 2, I recapped my Thursday at Axialfest 2018 where I visited more vendors, saw more people trailing, checked out the Concours builds, and finished the day off with the CKRC Dollar Dash!

This is Part 3 of the Axialfest 2018 Skeeno Report.  In this edition, I will be running the Altra Ultra 5K, checking out more vendors and trails, monster trucking, parading, and finishing up with a nighttime trial run.  Come see what I saw on Friday at Axialfest 2018.

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My morning started off with Mista Tree cooking us breakfast, so I would be fueled up for the Altra Ultra 5K.

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Tree had the brilliant idea to reheat the sirloins and have a little steak and eggs for breakfast.  It was delicious.

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After fueling my belly, I was pumped and ready to run! My servo was upgraded after Axialfest 2017, so I was confident that I could finish this year.

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Looks like a pretty good crowd already, and it was only 7:30 a.m.

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Even Mr. Cru Jones looked a little sleepy, but he woke up and ran the Altra Ultra 5K, too. Hey, #47, that was my number last year.

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Two things I want, a new set of Lone Peaks and a 2018 Altra Ultra 5K FINISHER plaque.

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I noticed quite a few runner sporting gators. I took that to mean they were serious.

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Question: Should gators be color coordinated or mismatched to stand out? Asking for a friend.

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Mr. Hobby Wing aka Swanky Su aka Charlie Sue aka Charlie Suanka was ready to test out his new Hobby Wing brushless setup; totally programmable by Bluetooth, sweet!

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A little National Anthem before lighting the lipos!

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Ready to go.  I think there were 64 of us this year.  Are you running the Altra Ultra 5K next year?

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Mighty Mike T headed out WAY before me.

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That’s MTB legend Mike Bier, I mean Mark Weir, in the far lane.  He had prior commitments and couldn’t attend the whole time at Axialfest 2018, but he made sure he stopped by just to run the Altra Ultra 5K.

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It’s a bad sign when you have a mechanical before the first turn.  I hope they get it sorted and get back out there quickly.

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I didn’t do much running through the river bed.  All the rocks made footing a little sketchy and I didn’t want to risk a twisted ankle, so I settled for a quick walk. Also, it’s difficult to jog, drive, and take pictures all at the same time.

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That’s Half Link in the rear.  I tried to keep pace with him, but he eventually left me in his dust.

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The DWTS Crew set up a little fun log jump obstacle be their campsite. You could crawl it to the right or send it to the left.  Best believe I sent it every lap.  I wasn’t scurred.

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This hill was the Widowmaker.  It was steep and made you see stars by the time you got to the top, especially once you were over a mile in on your second and third laps.

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At least there was some relief after the climb in this downhill section.

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There’s that dang Half Link again.  I thought I was about to catch him here while straw hat man did some trail maintenance.

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You had to keep your ears open because there were logging trucks running.  You didn’t want to run out in front of one of those. Luckily, marshals were on the look out for you and let you know when it was safe to cross the road.

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Ben Thomas tried to catch me here in the old waterfall section.

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Since I wasn’t in contention to podium and was just out to have fun and finish, I decided to take a small detour and drive through the MyTrickRC highway.  Glad I didn’t get stuck on the broken bridge.

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Just as I was finishing the second climb on the Widowmaker, my daughter texted me.

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She reminded me to stay hydrated, and not die.

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Thanks, Skeeno Jr.  I took a moment to take a sip from my water pack.

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There’s Mr. Chris all awake and running wild.

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Hmm, clear dirt, should I play it safe and take the high line?

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No, SEND IT!

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My Tekin RX8 held up without an issue.  Are those waterproof?

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Wait, are those scale buildings on the Altra 5K course? I better stop for a picture.

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Last lap.  I stopped to admire my Bomber snaking through some various obstacles.  These Axial RR10 Bombers definitely work well.

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I did it! I finished! Thanks to Tristan Judkins for the photo. I ran the whole race with my phone in one hand and the controller in the other; those are the sacrifices I make to bring you the Skeeno Blog.

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Heck ya! Got my plaque.  That’s going on the wall of fame in my garage.

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I knocked almost 20 minutes off my time for the last 5K I ran, and the course was really more like a 6.3K.

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And I got a Finishing Selfie with Mike Bier!

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The 2018 Altra 6.3K finishers! Who won?  I guess I’ll have to wait for the awards ceremony to find out.

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After the Altra 5K, I had some time to check out the trailing and some more vendors.  I noticed the REEF’s RC guys finally at their spot and got to ask what those cables were for. They told me they were to lock up their rigs when they weren’t around, so they didn’t drive off on their own, smart!

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The trails were pretty packed in the morning.

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Even Mr. Tree was out wheeling his Yota.

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The Bay Bridge was very busy.

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It was a long drive across, but not as scary as the Golden Gate bridge of last year.

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Shh, don’t wake that camper in the tent.

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I can’t believe MMA star Jamie Varner is an RC fan.

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Getting off the bridge was easy.

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These slick rocks are always more tricky than they look.

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These two were having a good time on the slick rocks.

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More people on the handicapped accessible trail.

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This was the start of the handicapped accessible trail.

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OG Chino was still rocking his Half Cab and twin sticks.  I don’t think he even noticed me he was so focused on this section.

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Feel the Powa! of the Power Wagon.

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Looks like Registration is closed for lunch. #flossanddab

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Back at the DWTS camp, Big Country and all his homies were set up and wrenching away.

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It’s like a sea of RC in there.

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Is that a DWTS bumper sticker?

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Don’t forget to stop and smell the flowers.  Enjoy the scenery and appreciate the beauty of the mountains.

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As the sun rose to mid afternoon, the temps also rose and people left the trails to try to stay cool. Under this bridge was a good chilling spot.

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I was only able to catch a few hardcore drivers out in the heat.

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Mr. Tree approves of this 4Runner.

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Some of the  rocks in this river bed were crazy big.

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Smile guys.

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I’m not sure if this is an action shot or a flex pose.

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He’s headed into the Unknown.

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Wait a minute, his rig wants to cool off in the river, too.

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It must have been refreshing, because this guy jumped in, as well.

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This is right about were I got hot and headed back for some more water and a snack.

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One thing I learned from our Austrian Axialfesters from a few years back is that they are not used to seeing big trucks on the road.  Even Average Joe and the Canucks were impressed with the 37″ tires on my trip up to the first Canadian G6. At Axialfest, there are big tires everywhere you turn your head.  RPP has big tires.

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Rivas’s A.T.A.C. 4Runner has pretty big tires.

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This FJ40 has big tires.

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This YJ has big tires.

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This XJ has big tires.

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KOH Champ Mr. Scherer definitely has big tires.

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The Prairie City SVRA approves of big tires. But, remember to use proper trail etiquette.

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I’m not sure where she’s riding, but that helmet and elbow pads say, SEND IT!

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Hey look, Magnaflow came again and brought some cool stuff for tomorrow night.

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I was lucky to spot Axialfest OG Brokenib out on the trail.

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He is still running the iconic Blue Bastard.

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I wonder if it’s still on 6S?

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The SPOD crew was following close behind.

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Down by the river more people were running the Knights Customs trail.

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This trail was popular with the kids.

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This Wraith is packed and ready for the long haul.

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This little girl was in a hurry.  She got a little annoyed when her father took a little too long on an obstacle.

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Dude, no cell phones when driving.  Don’t you know the rules?

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Luckily, we were off road, so no tickets this time.

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A fellow educator on the trial with his newborn.  I had a good time chatting with him and his wife.

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LOOK OUT!!!! DINOSAUR!!!!!

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These crazy aliens drove by like they weren’t even scared.

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What the heck? Is that the 1:1 Bomber? You never know what you’ll see at Axialfest.

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PS The Bomber has big tires.

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This guy was brave enough to save the submariners from the Jurassic Mosasaurus.

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The Dinosaur patrol is a little late.  The Raptors have already escaped.

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This was a great looking XJ.

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Rage at the River!!! There was quite a party going on by the overpass.

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This crew was enjoying the cold tub.  I kinda wished I had on my swim trunks.  The water looked great.

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It’s always cool under here with the breeze blowing off the water.

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Yoga by the river?

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Yup, more cooling off with the kids.

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Same idea but a little more controlled for the littles.

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I spotted this scale garage next to the road.  I loved the scale Ledgestone under the window.

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A couple years ago I spotted this teardrop at Axialfest.  It was in the initial stages of its build back then.

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It was a little more polished now with even more modifications to come. I wonder what it will look like next year.

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Those skeletons were still pickin and grinnin.

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I didn’t notice this scale garage at MyTrickRC when I ran by during the Altra 5K.

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Wait a minute, what’s this?

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The Monster Jam?!?!?!? I almost missed it.

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I’m always amazed at how difficult such an easy looking course is.  Competition makes the trigger finger get whiskey throttle.

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Elio and Pham look pretty serious.

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The kids were definitely serious.

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The kids love watching the carnage of the Monster Jam.

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Photo finish jump!

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Time for highest air.

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This guy blew his lid off.

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Hmmm, cool trophies. I don’t know what the classes were, but you can see the winners below.

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I swear, I turned around and the parade was just cruising by.  I almost missed this, too. There’s so much going on at Axialfest. Fun is everywhere!

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Is that a mile long Axialfest train?  It sure did feel like it. How long is a line with 2,000 people in it?

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The Monterrey Bay family was back again.  I recognized her pink livery from last year.

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At dusk, Tree, Mike, and I set out for a trail run.

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I see Mr. Tree back there trying to keep up.

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Dang, this day seemed extra long.  I woke up extra early to Altra 5K and stayed out late trailing into the Great Unknown.  See you in Part 4 of the Axialfest 2018 Skeeno report where we Rock Race and end a great week with the Axialfest 2018 Awards Ceremony and Raffle.

Axialfest 2018 Skeeno Report Part 2

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In Part 1 of the Axialfest 2018 Skeeno Report, I showed you the sights and sounds of Day 1, or Wednesday, at Axialfest 2018.  This is Part 2, and I will be recapping my Thursday at Axialfest 2018 where I visit more vendors, see more people trailing, go check out the Concourse builds, and finish the day off with the CKRC Dollar Dash!

3

Every day at Axialfest starts with a hearty breakfast. You need to fuel up for a full day of RC adventures.

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Tree didn’t get his rig fixed last night because he lost a screwshaft in the dirt.  Luckily, most Axialfesters are happy to help each other out.  When Tony Mazza heard Tree was pouting about not being able to drive, Mr. Mazza dug into his spare parts bin and found just what Mr. Tree was looking for.

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I spotted Mr. Colman aka Joshua Kaine Elliot aka ESP cruising around checking out the action.  He did tons of filming, so look for his video recaps of Axialfest 2018 coming soon!

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I went to see who was out trailing and ran into these guys on the handicapped accessible trail along the side of the road.

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Don’t be fooled by the looks of it. It was tougher than it looked.

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As usual, large groups of friends and family were seen walking to trails and out on the trails.

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Over in A camp, the Down With The Sickeness Crew was again rolling deep.  I think they have 100 members packed in there.

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The slippery rocks down in the river bed always provide a challenge.

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‘Merica!

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It’s important to remember to take a picture of your rigs at the beginning of every trail.

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That banjo player was still pickin and grinnin, but it looks like his wifey left him. Maybe she’s cooking breakfast.  Do skeletons eat?

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I wonder what that is.  I’ll have to stop by later when the Reef’s boys are around and ask them.

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Chassis, chassis, chassis.  You know what that means?

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Yup, CBE was back at Axialfest 2018, and they brought all the goodness with them.

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Hi, Mr. CBE!

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The coffee girls were back, and they bumped and danced and served up their coffee drinks all day.

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Our EMT friends returned to make sure any medical issues were dealt with quickly.  But, now that people know to stay hydrated, it’s a pretty slow week for Mr. EMT.

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RC4WD showed up on Thursday and brought out all the cool stuff.

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They have some amazing scale accessories for Axial vehicles.

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A working scale lift?  That makes changing muffler bearings a snap!

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These guys were checking out the tire selections.

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What did you win on the RC4WD Plinko game?  I think they were raffle tickets for a vehicle giveaway.

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I spotted these amazing vintage trailers as I left the RC4WD booth.

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The detail was unbelievable.

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Oven, check. Stove, check. Hood vent, check.

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Sink, check.  Dinette, check. Linoleum tiles, check.

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Same thing in this one.

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Both were beautiful.

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Hey look, it’s Harley from Vanquish Products.

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Tekin always has amazing vehicles.

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The 3D printed 6×6 was back.  See the Yeti Jr in the back?

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What up, Ty?

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Of course they also have amazing ESCs and Motors, but these servos are what I envy the most.  They’d be a great compliment to my RX8/ROC412 in my Bomber. Feel free to send one my way, hint, hint.

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I cruised past the pavillion.  It was set up and ready for Concourse later tonight.

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Roof Top Tents seem like the best way to get a comfortable bed just about anywhere.

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Hot Boyz! I believe this crew said they were from Metairie, New Orleans, Louisiana.

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This crew from drove by and recognized the Hot Boyz as camp neighbors from last year.  New friends are always made at Axialfest.

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I caught Big Tex Chris Zemek and Old Man Dan Wilson driving through some brush.

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Looks a little too pokey to stand on.

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This is either going to be cool or scary.  We’ll have to go check it out.

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There was a something Jurassic eating a sub on the river. Is that Meg?

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Someone should tell that kid not to swim in there. I’d hate to see him get eaten.

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Smile, little Axialfester!

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The river was a great spot in the hot afternoons.  Here this lady rests in the shade while still trailing through the gates.

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This probably means that there are dinosuars around.  I better keep an eye out just to be safe.

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This bridge made getting down to the waterfall easier.

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I scooted back up to check out the concourse and ran into Eazy E aka Elio.  He blessed by with some limited edition Axialfest 2018 trail swag. Who else got one?

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I got there just in time.  All the rigs were already lined up and ready to be judged.

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Oh, man.  The Skeeno Altra 5K Bomber.  That HAS to win.  Look how cool it is.

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There’s Mr. ESP doing his thang.  I hope he got good footage of the Skeeno Bomber.

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The next several pictures are some of my favorites.This one here looks like a solid piece of American iron.

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There’s nothing cooler than scale MATTRACKS.

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This Land Cruiser looks ready for some overlanding action.

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Work Horse.  I almost mistook this for one of the logging trucks transporting trees on the Fordyce access road.

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You don’t see many Jeep Liberties out on the trail.

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A scale engine bay always gets my attention.

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This monster truck looks like it’s ready for the Crawl For A Cure.

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Hmmm, will there be aliens at the Axialfest Monster Jam this year?

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This Tacoma would be right at home on the Rubicon.

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I wonder why I didn’t spot these Jurassic Jeeps down by the river.

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Jurassic dinosaurs or Star Wars space creatures?

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Another cool build by the guys at Tekin.

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What’s for breakfast? Check out the garbage can with liner.

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Mr. Kett, Mr. Knight, and Mr. Schultz hamming it up.

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David and Dolly of KLP Hobbies made the trip from China for the second time.  Glad to have you guys back.

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Matt Kett considered each entry very seriously.

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Badger and Gerrish also discussed each rig before choosing their favorites.

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Take a sip of the potion and hit the three wheel motion…

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This great SCX10 lowrider made an appearance.

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It was my favorite for its originality.  That’s all chromed out SCX10 under the body.

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Mr. Coleman’s brought out this cool Land Rover.  I believe he named it Blud Muney.

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The Axiallet was back, but this time it was business on the left…

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and party on the right!

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Go see these guys if you need and Axial haircut.  They’ll hook you up.

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Elio was on the prowl for youngster with no rig.  If you were a kid and didn’t have a rig, you might have gotten a special raffle wristband to win a 2ChainzScalerz custom built rig at the Awards Ceremony.

 

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This guy didn’t need a bracelet.  He was entered in the concourse.

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Daily driver
1. Alec Va DenBrink – Liberty
2. Joe Zuniga – Hilux
3. Elio Dianda – Brute

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D’raisin
1. Corey Hall – Goat
2. Todd Norton – Military 6×6
3. Bree Eral – Beetle

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Monster truck
1. Paul Russel Jr – White/Blue MT
2. Ben Thomas – Black Truck
3. Cancer sucks – Kye Steiner

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Trailer
1. Daniel Flores – Jeep Trailer
2. James Tomlinson – Forerunner
3. Judd Rummage – Amain Bike trailer

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Trailer
1. Daniel Flores – Jeep Trailer
2. James Tomlinson – Forerunner
3. Judd Rummage – Amain Bike trailer

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12 and under
1. Ina Eral – Unicorn
2. Sadie Silva – Dinosaur Wraith
3. Joe Zuniga – Blue Jeep

PS The Unicorn is amazing!

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Best Theme
1. Bree Eral – Dragon 6×6
2. Devlin Shipley – Scooby Buggy:
3. Chris Harder – Radioactive FC

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13-18
1. Jacob Simpson – 6×6 Flatbed
2. Dominic Reyes – Green Flatbed
3. Jensen LeBlanc – F350 SD

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Adventurist
1. Ty Campbell – Dakar Truck
2. Matt Hauck – Wrangler/ Powerwagon
3. Chris Prestwood – SBC Power Wagon

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Bomber
1. Jay Jaffe – Silver Otterpops
2. Mike Thompson – Red Altra
3. Dean Farrington – Black/ Orange

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After Concourse, it time for dinner!

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Sirloins, corn on the cob, and mashed potatos!

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The smell attracted our old friend from Costa Rica, Adolfo Gutierrez.

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This year he brought the whole Pura Vida! Crew out to Axialfest 2018.  We missed seeing Marcos Rojas, so maybe next year, my friend.

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After dinner, it was time for the CKRC Dollar Dash.  Mrs. Heather man (or womaned) the sign ups.

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1 Lap = $1, fastest time wins ALL the cash!

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Many competitors got slipped up on the PVC bridge.

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The good times usually go late into the night.

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That’s Old Man Dan.  He’s won the Dollar Dash for the past few years. Did he defend his crown again?  You’ll have to wait for the awards ceremony to find out.

Check out Axialfest 2018 Skeeno Report Part 3 where I will recap what I saw on Friday at Axialfest 2018.

Axialfest 2018 Skeeno Report Part 1

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You know what July means, Axialfest! That’s right, the largest gathering of scale RC fans at Cisco Grove Campground. Follow along as I give you a small sample of what went down at Axialfest 2018. Part 1 of the Skeeno Report will cover what I saw on Wednesday, July 18.

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As usual, you have to stop at the store when you arrive at Axialfest.  This year was a little different though, because before you went to the store, you had to stop at registration on the opposite side of the street.

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First Axial staffer I ran into was Stinky Shawn Barton. He was up at Cisco Grove for four weeks getting ready for all the Axialfesters to arrive.

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Looks like a full schedule of fun at Axialfest 2018.

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Before going in to the registration building, you got to get all your Axial vehicles teched by some of the Axial staff.  Randal Davis and Scott Kerkes were manning the tech booth when I arrived.

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If you passed tech, you got one of these stickers.

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If you failed tech, you got one of these stickers.

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At the tech booth, RC legend Don Hughes was arguing with Matt Kearney about which brand of muffler bearings were the best.

7 Inside the registration building, Jeff Johns was happily pointing to the swamp cooler that was keeping the registration staff nice and cool all day long.

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There were cones and tape for traffic control, but I don’t think there were ever very big lines.  The new check-in system really seemed to smooth out the process since it was open all day, everyday.

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I saw one chain of 2ChainzScalerz, Adam Dean, aka G Eazy checking in and getting his swag bag, shirt, hat, waterbottle, etc.  Can you see the swamp cooler in the corner of the picture?

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Ohhhhh, sweetness! a PK Ripper.  This bike was on my wish list as a kid.

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Over at the camp store, the ladies told me that the campground was again sold out this year.  That’s 450 campspots! Axialfest 2018 was set to be off the chain once again.

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After checking in, we headed over to H30, the Skeeno Spot since Axialfest 2013.  This year we jammed 3 tent trailers and 2 canopies into our spot. Nothing fancy, but the orange shag sure is nice to stand on once the Altra Lone Peaks come off after a long day of walking.

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Tree, Mike, and I took little break after setting up camp before heading down to check out Vendor’s row. Mike brought a TV, but didn’t get to watch it much, because there’s too much to do at Axialfest.

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Ryan Gerrish of DS Pro had some screaming deals on bodies and hard to find parts.  I got a Glitch Buster for $1!

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This was  box of random Axial plastics.  It was all free.  If you broke a part, you could rummage through and find what you needed to get back on trail.

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MIP came out this year with Matt Olson.  We reminisced about our old favorite RC mag, Xtreme RC cars.

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MIP had this racer on display.  I’m not sure what it was, but it was HUGE!

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A Main Hobbies was back with TONS of goodies.

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Do you need some scale accessories?  A Main Hobbies has you covered. I see WERTYMADE, SBC, and CBE in there.

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They had a Wheel of Fortune to spin to win prizes.

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A Main again had a sweet custom build on display.  If I’m not mistaken, this was given away on the last day of Axialfest 2018.

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I’m not sure if those are Pivot Phoenixes or Fire birds, but it doesn’t matter. Those Knights Customs parts really complete this build.

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Speaking of Knights Customs, James Knight was back out with his amazing 3D printed goodness.

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His booth is alway filled with the coolest accessories.

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3D printed metal bumpers, exhausts and Pull Pals?  Yup, Knights Customs has them.  Do you see the scale Canyon Cooler?  They were Axialfest exclusives.  Did you get one?  I did.

24

Hemistorm had his build on display.  Pictures don’t do it justice.

25

The ‘ghost’ bodies were my favorite part.

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I love the way you can see how all the parts mount up in the stock bodies.

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Look how freaking awesome that 22R sits in this Toyota Honcho. PS, this was a raffle item.  See the tickets in the background?

cooler

Here’s my sweet Knights Customs Canyon Cooler.  I think it’s going on the Jeep.  Did you get one?

29

Of course, Pro-Line was there.

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Paul Willhite told me to look for tokens out on Trail E.  They could be turned in for prizes at the Pro-Line booth.

31Hatfields and McCoys. Budweiser and Coors. Red and Blue. Yes, it’s true.  Tower Hobbies was bought by Horizon Hobby and the once fierce rivals are now a team. Have no fear, they announced that Axialfest will live on.

32

The official hobby shop of Axialfest, RPP Hobby was again packed and ready to meet your needs.

33

They brought all the sweet deals with them.

34

The best coolers to keep your perishables cold at Axialfest, Canyon Coolers was back. Did I mention Knights Customs has a scale replica?

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Cheers, Mr. Canyon.

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Hemistorm was manning the Castle booth.  Did you know Castle now has sensored brushless systems?

40

I stopped by to see my old friends at CKRC.

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Yes, it’s true that they decided to close up shop and follow a new career path, but that didn’t stop them from coming out and having fun at Axialfest.  Here former owner, Jason chats with the Taz, Tristan Judkins and Half Link about his next adventure in life.

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CKRC even had their own trail.  The first part was a 2Chainz Skillz section.

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Of course, it was detailed with cool scale buildings and such.

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It looked easier than it was.  We’ll come back later and try it out.

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Of course, I had to stop and make Grumpy Fast Eddie yell at me.  Sadly, he wasn’t around, so I took the opportunity to totally violate his lawn. All my bearings will probably seize when he sees this picture.

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Pedals Bikeshop was back.. I tried to get them to give me that PK Ripper, but I got denied.  I did get a new PBS t-shirt, though.

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Over at Area 108, these skeletons were having a good time pickin’ and grinnin’ on the old banjo.

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I took a spin around campground to check out who was here and found lots of people already out running the trails.

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The bridge up front by the camp store is always a fun place to play.

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Lots of kiddos were out and about this year again.  This guy was smart and remembered to stay hydrated when out in the heat.

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This little guy was totally focused on driving.  I had a hard time getting his attention.

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He finally threw up the deuces.

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The water was low, but I still saw lots of little ones out cooling off in between driving the trails.

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I spotted this cool fire pit on my way out of the creek bottom.

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There were little surprise buildings all over the place.  I’m sure I missed a bunch.  How many did you see?

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The 1:1 SCX10 was back again.

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Last year Mrs. Zotti was over in A section all by her lonesome.

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This year she brought all her fun bags and canopies over to Vendor’s Row.  She can customize yours for you.

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The temps were only supposed to be in the mid-80s, but for some reason it felt WAY hotter.  Luckily, Mr. Barton had a little shade to keep cool on his security rounds.

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What in the what?  Secret Area 51 Security vehicle.  Scott G. brought his Haflinger out to play at Axialfest.  The engine looks like someone cut a VW flat 4 in half.

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Go check these out, super cool!

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Big man, little car.  Last year Tree putted on my Skeeno Skooter.  This year he jammed himself into the Haflinger.

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Something crazy happened this year; I actually got to drive my SCX10!  Usually, I’m so busy with STAFF duties that I don’t have time. This year I got to hit a few trials.  The 2ChainzScalerz course was my first stop.

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I had to fill up before we headed out.  I updated my trail rig this year by going with a Proline Toyota Honcho lid and Axial Nitto Trail Grapplers in the R35 compound.

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I never obey this sign.

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As I was trailing along I spotted this Northstar camper.

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I looked for the owner, but I think we was taking a nap.  Great work whoever built this.

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We trailed around a bit more until Tree and Mike had some mechanical issues, so we cut it short and headed back for dinner.

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For dinner, we hit up the MOGROG truck.

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That’s right, Unimog Food Truck.

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Hmmm, what to get?

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It all sounded good, so we had one of each.  It was muy delicioso.

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After dinner, the poopy pants boys fixed their rigs, so I went back to Vendor’s Row to see who showed up while I was out trailing.

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Looks like Casey Currie showed up.

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Yup, the axles check out.  It’s Mr. Monster himself.

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And, he brought enough Monster Energy to keep us going all weekend.

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Finally, Mr. Altra, Chris Cru Jones showed up.  He told me the new Lone Peak 4.0 will be out very soon.

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You know Altras are the offcial shoe of RC.

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And bonus! I get a little discount on my new shoes!

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So, that’s what I saw on Day 1 of Axialfest 2018. After getting Tree and Mike’s rigs fixed up, we decided to hit the hay and be ready for Thursday at Axialfest 2018. Look for the Axialfest 2018 Skeeno Report Part 2 where I will go over what I saw on Day 2 of Axialfest 2018.

 

Axialfest 2018 Concours

Each and every year, some of the best RC builders converge at Axialfest to put their work on display for Axial fans to see and judges to notice in the Concours event. Year after year, more and more spectacular builds line the miniature walls of the Cisco Grove pavilion while bystanders look on as judges stroll pass the presented vehicles looking for machines that really stand out from the rest. Like previous years, the vehicles on display were all amazing displays of passion for the hobby and representation of some skilled detailers. Two new kids classes were introduced into the mix and were supported with some creative builds for their age brackets. All of those who put their custom built Axial based machines into concours deserve recognition for a job well done, but in the end only three were pulled for awards in each class. Check out some concourse scenes from Axialfest 2018 and the top three machines for each category.

Axialfest 2018 Concours12 Axialfest 2018 Concours1 Axialfest 2018 Concours2 Axialfest 2018 Concours3 Axialfest 2018 Concours4 Axialfest 2018 Concours7 Axialfest 2018 Concours5

CONCOURSE TOP 3′s
Axialfest 2018 Concours13
Daily driver
1. Alec Va DenBrink – Liberty
2. Joe Zuniga – Hilux
3. Elio Dianda – Brute

Axialfest 2018 Concours18
D’raisin
1. Corey Hall – Goat
2. Todd Norton – Military 6×6
3. Bree Eral – Beetle

Axialfest 2018 Concours6
Monster truck
1. Paul Russel Jr – White/Blue MT
2. Ben Thomas – Black Truck
3. Cancer sucks – Kye Steiner

Axialfest 2018 Concours17
Trailer
1. Daniel Flores – Jeep Trailer
2. James Tomlinson – Forerunner
3. Judd Rummage – Amain Bike trailer

Axialfest 2018 Concours14
12 and under
1. Ina Eral – Unicorn
2. Sadie Silva – Dinosaur Wraith
3. Joe Zuniga – Blue Jeep

Axialfest 2018 Concours11
13-18
1. Jacob Simpson – 6×6 Flatbed
2. Dominic Reyes – Green Flatbed
3. Jensen LeBlanc – F350 SD

Axialfest 2018 Concours10
Best Theme
1. Bree Eral – Dragon 6×6
2. Devlin Shipley – Scooby Buggy:
3. Chris Harder – Radioactive FC

Axialfest 2018 Concours15
Adventurist
1. Ty Campbell – Dakar Truck
2. Matt Hauck – Wrangler/ Powerwagon
3. Chris Prestwood – SBC Power Wagon

Axialfest 2018 Concours9
Bomber
1. Jay Jaffe – Silver Otterpops
2. Mike Thompson – Red Altra
3. Dean Farrington – Black/ Orange

Best Of Show
After the Judges had determined the Top 3 finishers for each class, the owners of the trucks were asked to come together and vote on a best of show. Sure each builder felt their rig was the best, but it was only a short time for them all to come together and agree who was best in show overall. In the end, Todd Norton with his Kraz 255 Converted Ukrainian Military clearly stood out from the rest from it’s detailed body, perfectly scale wood log haul and it’s patina for days.
Axialfest 2018 Concours16

Congratulations for all those who took home awards and thank you to all those who entered. Yet again another Axialfest Concourse event has wrapped up and builders continue to amaze with builds that show off passion for Axial adventure vehicles and beyond. We can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with for AXIALFEST 2019!

Packing A Daypack For Axialfest & Other Trail Adventures

AreYouAxial_Adventure_Ready
This time next week, RC adventurists will be littering the mountainside of Cisco Grove California for Axialfest 2018. Many will have spent weeks, months and even the complete year since last year’s Axialfest preparing their rigs for the event. But one important area that should not be neglected is your day pack. You know, all the gear you should carry in a backpack to help support your day out in nature with your rig. We’re sure you have a pretty good idea of what you need to carry, but we gathered up the suggestions on what to carry from the Axial team that has been attending Axialfest since, well, since the start. Here is a list of what we suggest to have on hand.

Backpack
To carry your equipment, you will of course need a backpack. There are certainly an unlimited number of offerings available. But we have a few suggestions. For starters, make sure the pack is large enough to carry all of your supplies. Second, check for compartments. Having lots of storage areas makes it easier to separate things, know where they are and access them easily when you need it. Support is another area to check. Bags with batteries, water and tools can get heavy, make sure there are comfortable straps and cross support clips to distribute the weight of the pack on your body with minimal stress. And finally H2O equipped packs are often a nice option to keep you hydrated as you go.

Axial Pack 1
Protection
It can get a bit buggy on the trails so having some insect repellant is often a must. Next, sun tan lotion or spray, you’ll be in the sun, protect your skin. Lip balm is another item that many drivers will have on hand with them.

Axial Pack 2
Tools
It goes without saying, you should carry a minimized version of your toolbox with you. Some allen wrenches, nut drivers, scissors and pliers will probably get you through most repairs. Hex driver or leatherman style multi-tools help you reduce the amount of what you carry as well. Tape, such as electrical tape, zip-ties and glue are also great for on the trial fixes.

Axial Pack 4
Batteries
You’ll be out on the trails driving your RC rig for long periods of time and when the power runs out, you don’t want to be left carrying your rig back to camp. Have an extra pack or two safely stowed in your daypack. It’s also a great idea to carry some extra transmitter batteries as well.

Axial Pack 3
Water & Food
Sometimes time just flies away and before you know it, you’ve been out on the rocks for hours. Always pack plenty of water and food to keep you going. Cisco Grove is at a pretty high altitude and with the heat of the sun, the combination can cause dehydration. Do not go out without water.

Axial Pack 5
Parts
Let’s face it, things can happen, especially with all of the highly modified rigs that will scour the mountains. If you know the weak points on your build, it’s best to bring extra parts in case you need to make a fix. Have a box of assorted hardware on hand too. Even with lots of prep, sometimes screws or nuts can rattle free from your machine.

Axial Pack 6
Media gear
You’re at perhaps the largest attended radio control event on the planet, make sure you document it! Have your cell phone charged, clear out the memory in your photo album and grab lots of pictures. Have a portable charger with you in case you need to recharge your phone. Action cameras and mini-tripods are also a must have. But unfortunately because of an incident at another unrelated event at Cisco Grove, drones are not allowed.

Lighting
Aventures run into the night at Axialfest so multiple sources of lighting are a must. A head-lamp is recommended as well as a flashlight. Have these items in your pack in case you’re on the trails for the long haul.

BRING WHAT YOU NEED
So we just went over the recommended items to have on you at all times at Axialfest, but only you know what is truly needed to keep you safe and prepared on the trails. You took the time to make sure your rig was in top running condition. Now make sure you are too.

Axial SCX10 II Deadbolt YouTube Video Collection

SCX10II_Deadbolt_Video_Collection

With all of the different social media platforms out there, didn’t you ever just wish you could find all of the cool videos of a certain RC rig all in one spot? Yeah, us too. So we took the liberty of doing the hard works and scoured social media to find some great videos of the Axial SCX10 Deadbolt. There were certainly a lot of great videos out there, but these stood out. In this Deadbolt Video Collection you’ll find everything from videos that give you all the details you’ll need to know about the truck, to exciting action segments and even tips to help you tune the scale trail machine.


By: Axial Racing
Title: Axial AX90066 SCX10™ II Deadbolt RTR
Video Description: Time to rule the rocks with some attitude! We’ve combined the rugged good looks of the Deadbolt™ with the exceptional handling of the trail-ready SCX10™ II chassis, giving you a rig that’s got both charisma and competence. The Deadbolt™ body is now coated with an olive drab paint scheme while keeping the original features you’ve come to love about it; narrow stance, bulging hood, realistic driver figure and exterior cage complete with light bar (LED lights sold separately). Finalizing the look is a licensed CRC front bumper and Method Hole wheels wrapped in Nitto Trail Grappler tires.


By: Scale Builder Guild
Title: Axial Deadbolt 2 – Start your Adventure HERE!
Video Description: Today I talk about the latest SCX10 II release from Axial, the Deadbolt 2. It’s an excellent place to start your journey into scale accurate builds, for the lowest price of entry. I think there’s a lot of potential here, so much so that this will be the next project build going forward!


By: Harley Designs
Title: Axial Deadbolt 2 – Free Modifications
Video Description: The Axial SCX10-II Deadbolt is the most budget friendly option they offer, so lets cover some free mods to get your rig handling even better on the cheap!


By: RCDriver_Online
Title: RC Trail Truck Favorite Gets A 2018 Overhaul! – Axial SCX10 II Deadbolt Running & Review
Video Description: The Axial Racing SCX10 Deadbolt has been a favorite trail truck for many RC off-road enthusiasts. This truck typically is the most affordable of the Axial offerings and is backed up with a cool look and great performance. Many chose the Gen 1 SCX10 Deadbolt for fun trail runs or the base machine for their wild trail truck builds. Well, it’s sad to hear the Gen 1 Deadbolt has been discontinued, but luckily it’s getting replaced here in 2018 with the SCX10 II Deadbolt! The new Deadbolt gets the new high performance SCX10 II platform with the same Deadbolt body we all fell in love with with a few slight style chanced like the color. This new Gen Deadbolt still has the affordable price tag too, so we can see it carrying on as a favorite for those getting into the RC trail truck world and those looking for a platform to start their next adventure build. In this video, we take a quick look back at the Gen 1 Deadbolt, followed by a feature breakdown of the new Deadbolt, then take it for a run and wrap up the video with a performance report.


By: SNOWMOD RC
Title: SNOWMOD RC – AXIAL DEADBOLT 2(FIRST RUN)
Video Description: SNOWMOD RC takes out the newest addition to the lineup from Axial Racing, the AX90066 Deadbolt 2! What a great rig with lots of new updates.

 

Overland Expo West 2018

Overland Expo West 2018

If you are into adventure travel, vehicle based camping or exploring the farthest reaches of this little blue planet, then Overland Expo is a must attend event. Each May, tens of thousands of people converge on the humble community of Flagstaff, Arizona for the sole purpose of checking out the latest and greatest overland gear, vehicles and theories on how to successfully explore by vehicle or motorcycle. This event was founded in 2009 and has already outgrown one venue, and by the looks of things is set to outgrow its current venue if the trend continues. With the current state of worldwide communications, many people can live their whole life without ever going outside; this has sparked a whole new group of people who wish to explore the outdoors in style and comfort. Overland Expo is the place to be if you want to learn how to do just that.

During the course of the event, you can sit in on many classes and learn basic off-road skills or insanely detailed recovery techniques from the likes of Camel Trophy competitors (If you don’t know what the Camel Trophy is, do yourself a favor and burn some hours on google and YouTube, it will change the way you think about off-roading).

Winching basics

Advanced rigging to move moto across river or wash out

The education portion of this event is worth the cost of admission; you will be getting first-hand information geared toward your specific direction from some of the most experienced travelers on the planet.

When you arrive at the event, you will probably have to wait in line, so plan to arrive early, really early. The best way to do this event on the cheap is to volunteer. To be a volunteer you will have a 4 hour shift for 2 of the 3 days and it gets priority “close to the venue” camping. This is the direction some of those in our party decided to go. We were just along for the ride, and a cool ride it was…

Here were our accomodations for the weekend. A 1991 M923A2 converted to a go anywhere RV

We could go on and on about all of the awesome things to do and see at this event, but we feel it best to break it into a few categories and drop some photos on you. We will start out with the camping systems. There are 3 basic ways to camp when on the fly, the traditional; ground tent (sometimes attached to the vehicle, sometimes not), the roof top tents (gaining massive amounts of popularity these days), and the baller status route, the full on camper or Expedition RV (basically a motorhome you can drive anywhere).

We will start with the ground camping systems, we snagged some shots of the coolest set-ups we could find, enjoy…

The quickest set-up tent on the market from Front runner, just unzip it, and literally throw it in the air, it lands like this…

These crazy “moon pods”, not sure who makes them, but there sure were a ton of them at this event

The traditional safari type tent.

The attached-to-the-vehicle tent.

We then went on the hunt for the coolest roof top camping solutions and came up with some awesome vehicles/trailers to share with you.

On the Falken JK with traditional RTT

The hard shell RTT

The RTT with the annex changing room below

There were so many awesome tent trailer solutions on display as well

The next group we had a look at was the campers, some of these are available off the shelf at a local camper dealer, others were custom grafted on the back of good 4×4 platforms…

Finally we have the ultimate way to travel, the expedition RV. These vehicles are basically luxury motorhomes built into custom habitat boxes, then mounted to the back of some exotic 4×4 or 6×6 vehicles….

This is an LMTV (M1078) with a small travel trailer grafted on the rear of it

Sprinter Vans, definitely the theme of this years event, this was the coolest build out here

This rig is from Acela Truck company,(A refurbished M1083 MTV) basically buy this rig and outfit the box to your liking

Here is a military radio box truck (M1079) retrofitted for travel it belongs to “Adventure Driven”, check them out on all social channels

And then one of the gems of the show, an LMTV (M1078) with a Bliss mobil habitat, can you say over 500K!?!?!

Just google Global Expedition Vehicles…

Just a few interior shots for ya…


We were stoked to see many of Axial’s partners on site showing the Overland community the best of what they have to offer.

Method Race Wheels

s-POD wiring soultions brought their new JL

Icon Vehicle Dynamics

TJM USA

Falken Tire

Rigid Industries

BFGoodrich Tires

The 2 wheel (sometimes 3) crowd is very well represented here, check out some of the cool bikes we saw

How about a very rare 2wd Rokon?

Or this super cool 2wd electric UBCO bike?

And then there are the really cool and rare Ural sidecar motorcycles

I’ll take the camo version please…

Finally, last but certainly not least, some of the coolest adventure vehicle builds we could find. It will be awesome when the scale community starts building some replicas of these awesome vehicles..

Super rare forward control Land Rover

Extended body Jeep JK with pop top roof tent

Just pure yes please!!!

Ok, 1 more Yes Please!!! Where have you been all our lives?

Because we are on the Toyota tip at the moment, check out this perfectly restored FJ..

This Couch Offroad Mog was beautiful

So much want right here, this Jeep is set up for some hardcore wheeling too!

Super clean Land Rover 110′s

Who doesn’t want a Steyr Puch Haflinger?

And finally we get to the “Shut Up and Take My Money” Rig……

This Ram was so on point…. Axial needs a new shop truck :)

This show is one of those that needs to be on everyone’s list of must attend events. There is so much history, knowledge and inspiration to be found here, it is very worth the effort to get there. You will leave exhausted, depleted of drool, broke as a joke but inspired to get out there an live. Safe travels my Axial friends!

For more information on this event, please visit the Overland Expo website.

Skeeno’s Axialfest 2018 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Build

After AXIALFEST2017, I started thinking that I needed to update my trailing rig.  Last year, I built a new racer for for the Altra Ultra 5K Enduro, but I needed something new to run on all the trials at AXIALFEST2018.

1

As luck would have it, Brown Santa dropped off some Green Tape just before the Christmas season.  Merry Christmas to me!

2

When I opened up the box, it was packed with the new SCX10 2 2017 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited CRC.  This would be a great new trailing rig for AXIALFEST2018!

5

My buddy, Mr. Werty over at WertyMade contacted me as soon as he found out I had the new rig.  He wanted to use it as a test mule for some parts he was making; rear bumpers, front bumpers, and rock sliders. Since we’ve been RC nerd friends for many years, I happily agreed to lend him my new trailing rig.

4

He returned it to me in even better than tip top shape.  All the parts he test fitted, he left on there for me, score!  I immediately started thinking about the things I wanted to modify and add to improve the performance and looks of the 2017 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited CRC. First up was to get a spare tire and some RotopaX on the rear bumper.

6

Mr. Werty repossessed those D Rings, so that was one item I wanted to replace on that sweet front stinger.

7

Check out those sweet sliders, indexed to hold the body, just like the stock plastic ones, but these are made out of steel.  The wrench logo in a nice touch, too.

8

Next up was a new set of socks and shoes.  I’ve always liked beadlocks and the classic Axial 1.9 Beadlocks were my first choice.  Just as I got the wheels, Werty annouced these new Wrench Rings, and I just had to have a set.

9

Look how awesome the rings look.

10

In order to add a little crawling performance, I like to add some weight in the wheels to lower the center of gravity.  The Axial Internal Rings are a perfect fit. I also swapped out to a slightly beefier looking tire, the BFG All-Terrains are a classic tire and the KO2 version is even better than the original.

11

They mount up easily, and you can adjust the weight using the inserts.

12

At this point, I was loving this wheel/tire/ring combo, but I wasn’t digging looking at the electronics through the wheel wells.

13

It was starting to look pretty good, but I still had a ways to go.

14

Next up, I needed to add some swag to the rear.

15

Since I wasn’t using the stock Nitto Trail Grabbers, I pressed one into service as the spare tire.

16

Next, I hit up my local hobby shop, CKRC Hobbies and picked up these RotopaX gas cans from Scale by Chris AKA SBC.

IMG_20180411_203425

Don’t worry, the tire rack swings away, so you can still get into the back of the Jeep.

17

Another modification I like to do is the 3654 Mod to the wheel hexes.  Eazy Elio from Two Chainz Scalerz taught me this trick to give any Axial scaler a slighly wider stance. Since the stock hexes are about 3mm, this modification adds about 10mm of width to the SCX10 2.

18

While I was at CKRC picking up the SBC RotopaX cans, I spotted these brass 8mm hexes from Team KNK. It might be slight, but the brass hexes will also lower the center of gravity slighty.

19

They fit perfectly and come with new wheel nuts and set screws to secure them to the axles.

20

Next up was adding some wheel wells to hide the electronics.  I used the wheel wells for the original SCX10.

21

They aren’t a perfect fit, but with a little creativity with the scissors, they worked out pretty well.

22

The curve of the Jeep Wrangler body means you have to trim the fronts quite a bit.

23

I ended up trimming that front tab off because I was worried it would hang up on twigs and things on the trail.

24

After a little black paint, they look great.

25

Black helps hide all the imperfections.

26

That’s WAY better than before; no more unsightly wires can be seen under there.

IMG_20180411_203118

I almost forgot to mention this cool feature on the WertyMade bumper. Those four holes are for mounting a rear winch if you want one…

IMG_20180411_203344

And that hole is a bottle opener for those times when you need to hydrate during wrenching sessions!

27

Next, it was time to add a some interior to give it a little more scale look, as well as to hide the electronics a little more.  I heard from the Anthony Rivas of Rivas Concepts and Matt Kett from the Scale Builders Guild that the 2012 Jeep Wrangler body was a perfect fit.

38

Sadly, I had to kill a perfectly good body.  If you want to try this, you can probably find an old body from one of your local RC buddies to cut up.

28

Be sure to cut around the lights and fender flares.

29

The rear view mirror mounting holes make a great mounting point.  The two screws hold the front securely.

30

I found that the door handle impressions lined up perfectly and made getting it in evenly easy.

31

I cut a big hole to allow for the rear body mounts to pass through.

32

Don’t worry, with the tinted rear windows, you can only see it if you are staring directly into the rear windows.

33

Looking good so far. Time for paint.

35

I wavered between black, red, and silver before settling on the silver.  I was happy with my choice because the bright color makes the interior pop against the red.

36

That’s what I’m talking about.  No more unsightly electrics can be seen in there.

39

Earlier, I got distracted by that big open space in the front bumper. TIme to remedy that.

40

I pulled the winch off my old SCX10 and it mounted up easily.  It even had a matching red hook.

42

Oh yeah! that looks way better with the winch in there.

43

I found some D rings on some old parts trees to replace the ones Mr. Werty repossessed. I even put one on the rear bumper.

44

Back to the interior.  Sticker time!

45

I kept it pretty simple in here.  The only thing I added was the steering wheel I had in my parts box.  Low Rider Style with the chain ring.

46

Boom!

47

Bam! The silver and black really contrasts well against the red.

48

There it is mounted up, two screws through the mirror holes and a little tape hold it in.

dsfdfas

There’s the mirror screws holding the mirrors on and the interior in.

49

I also found some wipers on the spare parts tree and mounted them up.

50

I really like the clean looks of it.

51 She’s just about ready to conquer all the trails at AXIALFEST2018!

56

I just wanted to add a couple more scale details.  First I added the molded door handles.

IMG_20180427_203454 (1)

A bonus of the door handles is they also hold the interior in place.

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Then, I added the molded hood latches.  Both of these come on the spare parts trees in the box.

123

I had to give it a quick trail run to test it out.

cover

I must say, this rig handles amazingly well.

58I’m thinking this rig is going to be amazing at AXIALFEST2018!

IMG_20180511_175951

One last item before I wrap up this build.  I need a few more lumens than the stock headlights, so I decided to add the JRC Offroad Roof Rack.

IMG_20180511_180920

Looks pretty good up there even though it’s originally meant for the 2000 Jeep Cherokee.

IMG_20180512_155745

The Rigid Light Bar fits perfectly up there.

IMG_20180514_181714

 

I used the 8 String LED and 3 Port High Output LED Controller.

IMG_20180514_182544

I’m really loving the look and capabilities of this rig.

 

IMG_20180514_182655

I’m definitely ready to emark on the adventures that Axialfest 2018 holds. I just wish July 18th would get here already!

 

Axialfest Rock Racer Preparation Tips

AxialfestRockRacerPrep

If you are a regular follower of the Axial Blog and we know you are, you probably saw the Trail Rig Prep blog for Axialfest. It’s loaded with great tips to help trail truck drivers and don’t think we forgot about you Rock Racers either. Rock Racing is a whole other experience at Axialfest and prepping a rig for the Rock Racing course or the Altra Ultra 5K can require a bit more preparation than a trail rig. Trail rig courses are not timed anymore at Axialfest and its a run at your own pace experience. But for Rock Racing and the 5K, there is much more on the line. Although they are fun events, there are prizes at the end for the winners and so you want to spend a bit more time making sure your rig is ready for what it is about to endure. We’ve altered our suggestions just a bit here, so if you read the previous trail blog, you should reread everything seen here.

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Hardware Check

Set-Screws- Set-screws can be a headache in the RC world, they are used in several areas on just about any rig. The most common is the pinion gear. If the set-screw goes into metal, it’s a good idea to add some blue thread locking compound to it before installing it. The thread locking compound is a measure to ensure the screw doesn’t back out during use. Most people use a blue thread locking compound which is serviceable, but in a Rock Racing competition, some have been known to use Red which is a permanent compound. Some heat can be used in the future to help break free hardware secured with red thread lock.
Lock-nut- Sometimes standard nuts are used in several locations on a rig and perhaps you’ve installed a nut or two along the way while working on or customizing your truck. Consider swapping out all standard nuts with ny-lock nuts. These nuts have a plastic insert ring that helps prevent the nut from backing off of the screw. You may also want to consider using threadlock compound as an additional way to secure the nut and some have even gone as far as installing two nuts to secure bolts in place.
Machine Screws- Machine screws have a much finer thread than a self-tapping screw. This finer thread often offers more “bite” into a part for extra security. Consider using machines screws wherever you can. And like that pesky set-screw, always use blue thread-locking compound on machine screws that go into metal so they don’t vibrate out while in use.

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Steering Tips

Super Servo Arm- Kits and ready to runs include plastic servo arms that will certainly get you underway, but in an Axialfest Rock Racing competition, they have been known to strip out. Axial’s option aluminum servo horns are some of the best available and are often used by builders in builds beyond installs in Axial vehicles. These option horns are available for different servo splines, have a double clamp and two holes for the steering link. The strong aluminum horns will hold up to the abuse on the course.
Servo Upgrade- Many drivers upgrade to higher torque servos with strong metal gears to withstand the abuse on the course. If you do upgrade, consider using a servo with an aluminum case. The mounting ears on a plastic case servo can break on hard impacts. At the very least, use a wide head screw to support the servo in the mounting bracket.
Steering Links- Steering links are often the first thing to hit rocks and other on course debris on the front of RR10 Bombers, Wraiths and on SCX10’s. Plastic links can flex, lead to weakening or can even break. Many upgrade to aluminum links to handle more abrasive action and still deliver precise steering.

 

AF18 Rock Prep1Suspension Work

Shocks- Before heading out on the rock racing course or 5K, its a great idea to rebuild your shocks with new oil and even better replace the seals. The shocks on a rock racer or even trail truck are among the most abused shocks in RC. Not only do they move up and down, but receive side loading as well that can wear on the shock and even cause it to leak. After rebuilding your shocks, make sure they have some “wiggle room” don’t clamp down on the shock mounts with the retaining screws. Let them slide on the mounting bolts a bit. This will give the shock additional movement that will lessen the wear of the shocks internals.

Trailing Links- The lower trailing links see a lot of ground action while damping the rig on the trails. When using plastic links, check to make sure the ball ends have not elongated and may break during the run. Use the aluminum plates to make the plastic links more rigid or there are plenty of aluminum options available from various Axial supporting aftermarket manufacturers.

 

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Driveline Tips

Screw Pins- Screw pins are used to secure the universal yokes to the axle drive pinions, if your rig doesn’t have them and you have a through-hole in the bevel pinion shaft, go with a screw-pin instead of a set-screw. This will ensure drive instead of a set-screw that can back out and slip. Use thread-lock here too of course.
Universals- We’ve seen some torn-up universals in our day. These components take a lot of abuse. Replacing the cross-pins before your course run can be a good idea. At the very least, check your universals for binding or regrease them if they look dry.
Bearings- Do you want to be “The Squeaky Guy?” Bearings take a lot of abuse and as they get covered in dirt or submerged in water, you risk the chance of bearing failure. If you hear squeaking, consider cleaning your bearings, blast them with a cleaner and re-oil them. Some go so far as to repack the bearing with grease. A bad bearing can eventually wreak havoc on your driveline on the trail. Fix it before it causes other possibly more expensive problems or dropping out of the race.
Gears- This is an important topic here. Many of crunchy transmissions have been heard along the trails at Axialfest. During your pretrip check, take a look at all of the gears. Do any look sharp, missing parts of their teeth, is your gearcase full of metal dust? Don’t leave it to a trail run to find our you needed to replace gears. In the axles, make sure the gear lash is correct between the bevel pinion and ring gear. Shims may be used to adjust gear lash. Inside of the center transmission, make sure your gears are well lubricated with grease. And finally, your pinion and spur. Make sure your mesh is correct, not too loose that your gears can skip and not too tight that it binds.
Slipper- Your slipper clutch is often the line of defense to protecting your transmission. When your rig gets caught up in a gap in the rocks and you pin the throttle, the slipper will slip rather than the gears skipping. You want the slipper tight enough so you get through gnarly obstacles, but you do need that slip for protection. A little trial and error works here in terms of setting. Always lean toward the loose side to start with.
Grease- As mentioned above a number of times. Grease, grease grease. Grease the gears, consider greasing the bearings, add grease to metal shafts inside of the axles, grease universal joints. Grease will keep these parts smooth and offer some protection from the elements.
Axle caps- The ends of the axles are secured with screws which if they back out can wreak havoc in many ways. Place a small dab of CA glue under the screw head before installing it to help secure it and prevent it from backing out during your run.

 

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What To Carry

Parts Supplies- Beyond prepping your rig for the course, you should prep for those what if moments. What if a screw falls out, what if a part breaks. It’s a good idea to carry a small parts bin of hardware with you at all times. Pack the bin with an assortment of screws, nuts, set-screws, body pins, flanged bushings for the steering knuckles, axles pins and washers in case something falls off on a run. Next you’ll want to carry some more substantial parts like a spare shock, some spare links, a spare center universal set-up. An extra servo horn or even and extra servo. There are even some drivers who will pack an entire assembled axle, or center transmission, just in case…
Batteries- During a rock race or during the 5K you may need to swap batteries. For better performance or to make it to the end. Have several packs on hand for the events and stored in a LiPo sack for safe transport.
Tools- You know those little bags of allen wrenches and the box wrench that came with your kit? They make great lightweight travel tools and can fix most of the issues you’ll have to deal with on your rig. Now granted hand tools make the job easier, carry the basics, 1.5mm, 2.0mm and 2.5mm hex drivers; 5.5mm and 7.0mm nut drivers, long nose pliers, scissors and cutters can also be useful. Place them in a bag and put them in your backpack during your adventure.
Survival- Always carry water with you for hydration, in fact its pretty much mandatory for the 5K and a must for between rock racing runs.. Cisco Grove is at a higher elevation and having water on hand will keep you hydrated during your hikes. Also have some nutrition with you. Some power bars, trail mix or other foods can take the edge off your hunger while competing on the courses. It’s also good to have a small first aid kit in case you get a scratch or scrape on the trail. Wear a hat, use moisture wicking clothing, wear proper footwear such as Altra shoes that will keep you sure footed on the course.

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The Axialfest Rock Racing and Altra Ultra events test both man or woman and machine. It’s a good idea to prep both your rig and yourself for these events. Train ahead of time for quick sprints and lengthy runs. Be prepared for all types of weather too. It can be cold in the mornings and hot in the afternoons. These events at Axialfest are to promote fun first and foremost, but racing can always get intense and being prepared can help you make it to the finish with success.