Hiking the Redonda Ridge with an SCX10 Trail Honcho

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Hiking the  Redonda Ridge with an SCX10 Trail Honcho

Words & Photos: Rodney “GCRad1″ Wills

Hopefully you’ve read the lead-up stories:
Planning a SCX10 Hike over Redonda Ridge OHV Trail 1W17
PACK CONTENTS FOR A SCX10 TRAIL HIKE
Getting There – SCX10 Hike Over Redonda Ridge – Big Bear, California
 Axial AX90059 SCX10 II™ Trail Honcho 1/10th Scale Electric 4WD – RTR

All the planning is sorted, now we are about to do this thing! We wake up early, I think my alarm went off at 6:00am. Didn’t sleep that well, I think I was too excited.
Too much planning made for too much anticipation.
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It’s Wednesday Morning, October 25th, and I get myself physically prepared; Altra Lone Peak 3.0 Trail shoes, Stance Training Crew socks and Hammer Nutrition Endurolytes for cramp prevention as its going to be a warm day.
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I load the beloved SCX10 Trail Honcho into my ADV80 and we get ready to depart camp and make our way down to the the start of the trail just past Crab Flats Campground. We will start here (Google Map Link) at the Redonda Ridge 1W17 trail marker sign. Four of us will be walking the trail and John Schultz and ScottG will be taking the two vehicles back to camp awaiting our return to camp later this afternoon – evening.
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Last minute morning bits; I get my water bladder filled and of course I have my Hammer Nutrition Heed pre-mix going!
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John Schultz hooked me up! I have a magnetized hood so I don’t loose my body clips!
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Rather simple and rather simple silly cool! Schultz learned it from somewhere and we will make a little blog about it at a later date.
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Load in the first battery and mark the time of start.
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OFFICIAL START: 9:05am Wednesday October 25th, 2017
Axial Trail Honcho Hike Over Redonda Ridge OHV Trail 1W17 is now underway!!!Redonda Ridge Planning-7
This first portion of trail is actually down hill. Everyone is in good spirits!
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I can’t help it, I shoot photos of everything… even the trees. And the landscape! I love the textures and the colors. I’ve been known to “#textures” on my IG before. I can hear my buddy Jarod DeAnda laughing now, “your and your #texture hashtag.”
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Big Bear is a mix or a transitional point from the desert to the mountains, depending on your location on the mountain, you can get a mix of cactus and pine trees of which we will see both today along ridge route to Big Pine Flats.
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The SCX10 Trail Honcho doing what its suppose to do, trailing along.
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Still working our way down hill.
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The sun is warming up quickly, but luckily we still have some shade as we make our way down to the creek, but once over we are fully exposed and will be in “up hill mode!”
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Trails crossing… should put us right about here on Google Maps.

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Keep on mini truckin’ hehehe That’s funny! I know all the GMC dude’s rock the #TinyTrucks tag. I’m an og Mini-Truckin’ dude! I’m going to see if I can dig that old hat out!
We might upset some folks… hehehe
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BRAAAP! off the air craft landing strip shrapnel – the OG Sand Ladder aka Marston Mat. Know your overland-spec history yo! Look it up!
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We are almost to the creek crossing, more like stream crossing, but it is coming up soon.Redonda Ridge Planning-28
I’m usually the one hauling the video camera on these missions so it’s a bit strange for me to see my colleagues carrying the gear.
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It’s been at least a month since my previous crossing and the water level is going down quickly.
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Anthony Rivas got roped into hiking this trip with us and he is doing what he does best, directing some social media shots!
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Hey look! It’s not me on the vid-cam, it’s Scott Roberts doing the video camera action! While most people don’t see or know much about this man right here, he has worked here at Axial with me since 2011. Everything you see visually from Axial basically comes from this man or at least across his desk.
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We crossed over it at the creek crossing, the PCT runs along it through here making yet another appearance in my face! It keeps calling me… But not a full blown thru-hike, maybe just the SoCal weekend section hiking…
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The SCX10 Trail Honcho looks down on the PCT like, “I got this!”
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Who is a fan of desert tan, green eggs and ham mixed with DJ Red Alert.
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Since we left the creek crossing it has become very apparent that THE ASCENT IS ON!
The trail surface to this point has been mostly course sand mixed DG based.
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But as we continue on and up, rocks are starting to litter the trail.
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Also too, after the creek crossing, we are out of the tree cover and exposed to the sun.

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The crew said there was suppose to be a picnic table set up at this GPS point location. Something about pre-paid Amazon air drone delivery service…
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I keep on trucking as I want to get the SCX10 Trail Honcho into rockier conditions!
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The crew finally gives up in protest about the picnic table. “We are canceling our PayPal payment!” The sun laughs and turns up the temperature and add some incline for good measure.
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See! Cactus… on the edge of the forest!
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Climbing…
Climbing…
Climbing…

At the one shade spot…
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We see deer tracks.
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Little ones…Redonda Ridge Planning-51
Hey guys, where you at?
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Carrying on our climb dance!
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Climbing… It’s what the SCX10 Trail Honcho eats for breakfast.
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Climbing… It’s what the SCX10 Trail Honcho dream about before breakfast. Redonda Ridge Planning-59
Climbing… It’s what the SCX10 Trail Honcho does at high noon.
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Climbing… It’s what the SCX10 Trail Honcho does just for fun!
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We make the first major climb for what seems like two hours straight…
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but we finally reach a little plato of earth… Redonda Ridge Planning-67 Redonda Ridge Planning-68
POSER SHOTS! Scroll back up three images…. The guys are asking if the trail goes up over those hills.. “The trail looks like it goes over…” I ignore or I think I said, “yea, naa, I think it cuts around to the right out of sight… Time to roll!”
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From our moment of flat perch, we get to see down this little canyon and its cool to see the small batches of trees. Feels like some wilderness to me!  Redonda Ridge Planning-71
“Therezzz GOLD IN DEM DAR HILLS!!! FOOLS GOLD YO!!!” I gotta’keep the spirits high!
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It’s cool to see the terrain change.
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More #texture change.
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I think this is my favorite shot of the trip. I saw the setting as I was walking up to the crest, stopped, snapped one photo and said, “Yep! Leave it chance and see how the “film” comes out!” Came out all right…
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As the SCX10 Trail Honcho takes in the view, I check the spot to see what it looks like from the front. It’s not as cool of a shot but see that trail we are coming up! Yes sir, we are doing this thing!
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I circle back around to verify the animal footprints. Small one here, but I did see some larger “kitty cat” prints earlier, most  likely a healthy bobcat.
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The Axial SCX10 Trail Honcho is its proper surroundings.
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Trail Honcho bossing the moto trail, but the gnar lay ahead.Redonda Ridge Planning-83
I nicknamed this “scary bush.” Especially if we was coming through here at night.
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The tree is still wearing it’s charred skin from the Butler Peak fire of which I think was back in 2007.
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Did I ever tell you that I actually like shooting photos? But just look at that trail! It’s an “ALL BRAAAP!” section! But wait…
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Now we are getting into some gnar! It’s not easy to get a 2D photo to show the dynamic perspective of hills and their steepness, but take note of Scott Roberts walking ahead, you get a little since of the angle here.
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Maybe this will give you a perspective… Rest stop! SR & Rivas taking a breather, because they can see what lays ahead… ANOTHER HILL!Redonda Ridge Planning-91
The Trail Honcho is upholding it’s SCX10 heritage and just eats up each mile regardless of steepness.
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Meanwhile the steepness is eating up my crew. “Look SR, we have to climb that hill, that other hill behind that and then that other one way back there…”
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Kinda’ spectacular out here!
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Interesting how the cross section view of this tree’s rings looks like four trees in one.
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The SCX10 Trail Honcho just churning out the climbs.
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This trail has obviously been here for a while and been well “knobby traveled” but you have to wonder, who did it first? Who cut this trail? Was it an Indian foot path before? One day I need to stop into Malcolm Smith Motorsports and ask Malcolm directly as this trail is called the Malcolm Smith Trail. But there is very little historical information about this trail online.Redonda Ridge Planning-99
Same photo as the one preceding this one, but I wanted to show the ridge of which we traveled. We’re kinda’ out here! Yes, civilization is just over the mountain the in the background, but your still out here… We haven’t seen anyone else all day… and I like that.
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The SCX10 Trail Honcho takes the hard line just for fun I however will walk the easy path.
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More gnar please.

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The SCX10 Trail Honcho FINALLY runs out of gas! It would… just feet from a nice shady flat area.
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Good thing I have my Schizzle-magnets! I’m a fan! Thanks John!
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Battery #2 loaded and battery #1 marked with the elapse time.Redonda Ridge Planning-108
Just a few more feet and my view looks like this and I join the crew in the shade.
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While I’ve been self-fueling all along, we take a static moment to enjoy our nutrition bars.
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Time to roll!
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With another crest of a hill reveals another view!
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And then more climbing!!!
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While spectacular, the views keep showing those climbs… Redonda Ridge Planning-116
Here you get a little sense of the climb as you can see the crew pushing on.
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I like this shot! I think it shows a bit more of the hill but the view is spectacular!
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But the climb has a summit and a summit reveals more.. See that little trail thread? Talk about onion layers! Redonda Ridge Planning-122
We take a moment in the shade.
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I know you guys are on the Altra Trail Running shoe tip, but are you on the Trial Gator tip? I’m diggin my shoe gators! As goofy looking as they are, they’re total function! With the small gravel-DG-dirt, the gators are perfect for keeping all that stuff out of my shoes!
Get some! https://www.altrarunning.com/gear/men

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SCX10 Trail Honcho is back in the trail saddle.
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The sun is starting to throw the long shadows…Redonda Ridge Planning-125
The team is working to push themselves forward as elevation and the rate of steepness has not given in!
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We start to get into another step section, but its been steep all along. I guess it’s more like a steep chute.
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Y
ou sorta’ get a sense of steepness from this view, but regardless I’m just shooting it for the view, the memory, the way the sun is flaring.
Just as I drop the camera back to my side, I’m having to get after this little section. I actually start to wonder if I can actually make this section! I won’t say I am nervous yet as I know I can trail blaze the SCX10 Trail Honcho around if I have to, but it will be limited space to do so. I stay in the trough or chute of a trail and work the rig through the boulder and then in the deep heavy granular sand or DG – decomposed granite. The combination of having to use wheel speed to push up hill in the DG while also the tires dig down and find bite on the rocks below… I hear it… Wait, what? I don’t want to hear that!!!
OH NO! NO FORWARD MOMO.. MO – MOTION!
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After we diagnose the issue, Tony takes my tools and jumps into action so I can
document the wrench action.
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Again, dig the magnet trick as we can drop the screws here on the underside and the body clips are on the top side.
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As suspected, idler gear gone fishing for the afternoon.
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We fish out what debris we can in preparation to install a new gear.  Redonda Ridge Planning-128g
We install a metal idler gear Mr. AX31585 Redonda Ridge Planning-128h
Field repair is almost complete!
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Buttoning it all back together and we will be back in action in moments!

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Now we are back in action and started where we pulled off and it’s the start of
the nasty climbs!
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As you can see, there is a cleaner easier path to take, but what is the fun in that?!
I came here to put the rig through its paces on the rugged trail of the Redonda Ridge.
I could have just stayed home and drove circles around in the parking lot, but that is not my idea of fun! Being out here is fun, while it is both grueling on my body and the SCX10 Trail Honcho. But it’s worth it as it’s an additional layer of testing.Redonda Ridge Planning-131
These climbs also showcase some scenic views!
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Photos never seem to capture the true steepness of a hill, but looking at ScottR and Rivas as they make their way up, shows a bit of how steep this section truly is. When I begin to question if I will be able to drive a section due to the steepness, I really start looking creative driving lines!  Redonda Ridge Planning-134a
When you see motorcycle parts on the ground, you know its a tough section.
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But we are “still not out of the woods” yet, insert “rocks” in place of woods. Yes, we are still in the woods, with rocks strewn about! hehehe   Redonda Ridge Planning-138
Rivas making his way up. The team has come to the conclusion that there is no end in hills, they just keep rolling at us. Only to discover around each bend, more hill!
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And more hill it is!
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The lighting from the sun is just awesome! We are within the “golden hour” and I could sit on this hillside and shoot till dark!
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But, I only snap off a couple and keep moving as I knew we have at least a mile or two further to go and we will be hiking in the dark.
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The sun is is about to drop behind the mountains and the ground bush on our mountain is blocking some of that light, but we finally made it through that section! Redonda Ridge Planning-143  Redonda Ridge Planning-145
You just want a lounge chair and a big dinner as this is the perfect wide-screen!
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But we must keep going, the SCX10 Trail Honcho marches on!Redonda Ridge Planning-147
Another big boulder garden! Who plants these things?!
Who would want these things to grown like this?
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The SCX10 Trail Honcho makes no worries of such matters and see’s only the playground in mother nature’s garden of rocks.  Redonda Ridge Planning-150
WHAT?! A moment of downhill or even flatness is a happy moment!

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Only to be defused by another uphill climb as Tony makes more reveling with his headlamp that we will be engulfed by darkness on the backside of this climb.
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Everyone is beat tired, but the view is magical.
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Battery change time!
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There is both excitement and angst in the air from the crew. The hills are behind us, the darkness is ahead of us.

Maybe the last climb? Redonda Ridge Planning-172
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Hike team headlamps streaking by.Redonda Ridge Planning-174
The SCX10 Trail Honcho awaits the last of the team to pass for the final view of darkness and the final decent to the trail gate at Crab Flats. The end is near, just ahead down a dark mountainside with ZERO moon light. We make our way down and ScottG is awaiting us, with lights on in the rig, we can see how much further we have and the excitement builds for the team!  “GET US OFF THIS TRAIL!” is what a think I heard! Redonda Ridge Planning-181
WE ARE HERE – WE ARE HERE – WE ARE HERE!!!Redonda Ridge Planning-184
We extract the third and final battery out of the SCX10 Trail Honcho and mark the times.

OFFICIAL FINISH: 7:30PM Wednesday October 25th, 2017

Total mileage: 9.68 mile / Total Elapse Time: 10-hrs & 25-mins
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This trip epic, awesome, fun, grueling and was a big learning curve!
The crew will forever remember this trip! Redonda Ridge Planning-185
That’s a wrap! Spark Arresters Required!

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Back at camp, ScottG aka “BKGriller” makes HAMBURGERS for the HUNGRY!!!

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[L2R] Tony Phalen (cam-2), ScottR (cam-1), Rodney Wills (SCX10 Pilot), John Schultz (team basecamp & rig prep), Anthony Rivas of Rivas Concepts (guest & social documentary) ScottG (team basecamp & trail transpo & chief).

See the rig:
Axial AX90059 SCX10 II™ Trail Honcho 1/10th Scale Electric 4WD – RTR

Planning a SCX10 Hike over Redonda Ridge OHV Trail 1W17
PACK CONTENTS FOR A SCX10 TRAIL HIKE
Getting There – An SCX10 Hike Over Redonda Ridge
Axial AX90059 SCX10 II™ Trail Honcho 1/10th Scale Electric 4WD – RTR
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About the Author: Redonda Ridge Planning-191
Rodney Wills may not have been born with a silver spoon in his mouth, but he was more than compensated for it by being able to grow up behind the wheel. At eight years old he started driving heavy equipment on his uncle’s farm. Flouting child labor laws, his uncle would put him to work; he would get him started and jump off the tractor, and have Rodney cut and plow fields. The uncle found Rodney a willing employee. Now, while he did not engage in any tractor races, the seed had been planted (literally); the passion for driving already raced through his veins.

Later on in Alabama, Rodney would drive his father’s old pickup truck. As young teenagers sometimes do, he would sneak the truck out to splash in the mud on the local country back roads. Rodney did not limit himself to four-wheel rides, however. Motorcycles were always apart of family life and Rodney had started riding at age five. Racing came at age six on the dirt oval flat track at Talladega. Trail riding was an everyday thing in the backyard woods and local mountains.

Magazines would introduce Rodney to skateboarding and then BMX in 1977. Normal by today standards but then in rural Alabama, Rodney was way ahead of his peers. Just like his hobbies, his life went in the order of Art, Music, and Cars. His passions led him to the California College of Arts and Crafts after two years at the Atlanta College of Arts and Crafts. After achieving a bachelors degree of art in graphic design, Rodney went on to work ten years in the snow, skate and surf industry through his art, working for the famous O’Neill wetsuit company. Next came music as the art director for the car audio speaker manufacturer Image Dynamics. That led to Rodney starting the import car culture lifestyle magazine, TMRm’zine [1996-2000]. This magazine put the “lifestyle” label on the import market that has now grown to enormous proportions in the automotive industry. For the next 10-years Rodney worked in magazine publishing. During a meeting between colleagues, Wills was helping an event promoter make his event better, which lead to a more in-depth connection to the R/C industry pulling Rodney in to work for HPI Racing [2006-2010]. Since 2010, Rodney has worked for Axial as Global Marketing Director coming up with wacky ideas such as this.

Video documentary of the Axial SCX10 Rubicon Trek

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Words/Photos: Rodney Wills

Back in 2013, we published a series of blog posts that I wrote documenting our efforts to take a bone-stock 1/10th scale Axial AX90028 SCX10™ 2012 Jeep® Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon 1/10th Scale Electric 4WD – RTR out of the box and drive it over the world renowned full-size Rubicon Trail.

Our Rubicon Trek took place in October of 2012, and those blog posts reflect each day’s events from start to finish. What those blog posts did not show is the video footage documenting this trip – until now! We have two video’s; one at 9-minutes long talking about the trip over video footage and the second one at 55-minutes that shows a lot more footage for your milk & cookies viewing pleasure.

The photos from that trip was purely secondary to the docu-trip as they were shot with a little Canon PowerShot SD1100 IS pocket camera carried in my pocket. The video camera and heavy duty tripod was the “heavy equipment” weighing in at 19-lbs. I did not shoot every square inch of the 15+ mile trail, so there was a lot of shoulder time with the camera as getting in-and-out of the Jeep was not practical as we had all the camp gear and equipment spread out in the Jeep once we were on trail. Regardless of the rigors I personally went through, I am very stoked to have the opportunity to plan, execute and document this trip. These videos reflect the Axial SCX10’s pure performance capabilities.

Need a jump-link to those previous blog post?
http://www.axialracing.com/blog_posts?cat=814

 

The Perfect Fit: SORRCA Class 1 Ready SCX10 / SCX10 II | PART 6: TREADS

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In our mission to show you how the Axial SCX10 and SCX10 II are a perfect fit for SORRCA Class 1 events, we’ve organized the rules and broke them down into six total focus groups. We’ve reached the final focus and that is the wheels, tires and widths to fit your vehicle in. This topic requires some thought and product purchase choices will require work on your part to make sure your rig complies. Let’s dive in.

FOCUS 6: TREADS
SORRCA Rule • 106mm / 4.19″ Max tire size including spares.

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Looks like the Axial Perfect Fit has hit a snag. Unfortunately, the treads within the Axial tire line-up are on the larger side of the SORRCA rule and therefore you’ll need to search for tires that fit this rule and your traction needs. If you are trying to keep that factory look, consider using a licensed wheel from the Axial selection HERE.


 

SORRCA Rule • Wheels must be aligned within the body wheel wells (center of wheels to center of wheel wells +/- 1/2 inch total combined)

SORRCA Rule • The tread of the tires cannot extend outside of the wheel wells more than 1/2 of the tread width, flairs can be added to reach minimum spec.

Team KNK Hardware TTC4 2017-88
When choosing your wheel and tire combination, you’ll want to make certain that the wheel off-set is correct, consider hex hub widths, and tire overhang on the rim so it does not exceed the measurements provided by SORRCA. The vehicle above has wheels that are obviously outside of the body width; this rig would not fit within SORRCA’s rules.


SORRCA Rule • Tires can never extend beyond the body’s bumpers or the rear of any truck bed. (Any stingers,fairleads, shackles, bolts, etc. are not considered part of a bumper when determining this.)

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As Axial SCX10 and SCX10 II’s arrive from the factory, the wheels and tires are located behind the bumpers. When lengthening links or altering bumper positions, you’ll want to make sure the wheels will still fit behind the bumper. If you are making modifications as such, make sure you fit within some of the previous rules mentioned in our series like sectioning and bobbing.


 

SORRCA Rule • Gates will be a minimum of 11″ wide (so mind your width).

Team KNK Hardware TTC4 2017-165

Gate width plays a key role in determining the width of your trail rig once you start customizing. The stock SCX10 width is 8.8” and the SCX10 is 8.9” which will leave some space to clear gates as long as your wheel and tire choice combination result in a factory width in order to fit under the body. If you choose a combination that is wider, you’re putting the squeeze on your rig through the gates. A bigger concern is the angles in which you need to proceed through some gates if a minimum 11” gate is used. Things can get tight.

GET SORRCA READY
That wraps up the series on the Axial SCX10/ SCX10 II Perfect Fit for SORRCA blog focus. SORRCA has done an excellent job in providing guidelines for everyone to follow so the rigs stay scale and the competition stays close. Our descriptions of how scale Axial trucks fit into these rule sets has been interpereted and presented to the best of our knowledge. Both Axial trail truck platforms continue to be the perfect choice for drivers who want to drive scale, customize with ease and tackle the trails with commanding performance.

 

The Perfect Fit: SORRCA Class 1 Ready SCX10 / SCX10 II | PART 5: BED

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Throughout this series, we discussed how the out of the box 2000 Jeep® Cherokee 1/10th Scale Electric 4WD – RTR and 2000 Jeep® Cherokee 1/10th Scale Electric 4WD – Kit fit within SORRCA guidlines right out of the box with no additional work on your part. With slight modifications, other Axial SCX10 based rigs can be easily altered to fit within those guidlines using Axial accessories. Our fifth focus on getting your SCX10/ SCX10 II Class 1 ready discusses truck bed rules and what they mean if you decide to add a truck type body to your trail machine.

FOCUS 5: BED

SORRCA Rule • Bobbing a truck bed is allowed, but must follow all body specs.

An example of "Bobbing" a bed would be to remove the material between the two red lines on the body above. After the material is removed, the tail-gate is reattached to the bed.

An example of “Bobbing” a bed would be to remove the material between the two red lines on the NuKizer body above. After the material is removed, the tail-gate is reattached to the bed.

Bobbing a truck bed is the practice of removing a section of the bed from the left to right side between the rear wheel-well and tailgate. This reduction in the overhang lessens the chances of the bed dragging on the ground during an ascent or hanging up on an obstacle as you cross it. The Jeep NuKizer 715 Body,Jeep Mighty FC Body and 2015 Ram 2500 Power Wagon would be examples of Axial truck bodies with beds that “could” be Bobbed. But these vehicles already have short rear sections and the implications of reattaching a Lexan tailgate on bed with minimal performance gain detours most custom modelers. Bobbing can’t be done on an XJ or Wrangler body either as this falls into the sectioning rule discussed in Part 4 of this series.


 

SORRCA Rule • Dovetailing is not allowed.

Dovetail

Dovetailing is the practice of angling the fenders in towards the center of the vehicle. This requires the center section of the hood or bed to be narrowed at the end and remains wider at the center of the vehicle. Dovetailing improves clearance of the vehicle when approaching obstacles on the trail. Factory Axial bodies are designed to look scale with approval from licensing partners so the vehicle is represented properly. Any Axial scale body will conform to this rule unless you modify it.


 

SORRCA Rule • Truggies are not allowed. Flatbeds with full length rail chassis are allowed. The bed must be as wide as the cab the entire length of the bed. Cab only not allowed.

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Truggies look pretty cool, we’ll admit it, hint hint Honcho! But unfortunately the Honcho body from Axial would not fit into Class 1 SORCCA rules. A truggy is made up of a cab with a cage style rear bed, a specialized vehicle you would hardly ever see on the road. Flatbeds however are seen on the roads so there is no stopping you in locating a Honcho body or using the cab from the Dodge Ram and fitting a custom made flatbed to your SCX10. Keep in mind that the flatbed must run the length of the frame rails and must be as wide as the body you use.

GET SORRCA READY
When getting your SCX10 model ready for a SORRCA event, many will be able to skip this focus here when using a factory XJ, Rubicon, or Wrangler unlimited Axial body. But Axial does offer options for you to get creative with traditional bed equippped truck offerings so you can customize your rig to fit your scale taste. Just one more SORRCA Class 1 Focus to go, and there we will discuss treads. Keep an eye out!

The Perfect Fit: SORRCA Class 1 Ready SCX10 / SCX10 II | PART 4: BODY

AX17_SCX10_II_SORRCA_CLASS_part4

We left you hanging there in Part 3 didn’t we? We tell you not to modify the body and then tell you about a follow up blog on Body Mods. Well, here we are to show you a little can be done and some things to completely steer clear from doing. SORRCA in efforts to keep rigs on the trail in a recognizable scale form has determined performance gaining modifications like boat siding and sectioning bodies will not be permitted within the Class 1 rules. Here are some details to consider when preparing your Axial SCX10 or SCX10 II for a SORRCA event.

FOCUS 4: BODY MODS

SORRCA Rule • Boat sides are not allowed.

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The flat sides of the SCX10™ II 2017 Jeep® Wrangler Unlimited CRC edition conform to the SORRCA rule set.

Ok Gilligan, you can’t modify your ship in order to run it ashore. Boat siding is a process in which the lower rocker panel and sometime door area is bent to an inward facing angle. This is done to help gain body ground clearance and also allow the body to glide over rocks and obstacles rather than possibly getting hung up. The angle of the modified panel simulates the angled hull of the boat which is how the name came about. All of Axial’s bodies from the 2000 Jeep® Cherokee, to the 2012 Jeep® Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon and even the new 2017 Jeep® Wrangler Unlimited CRC all have body sides perpendicular to the ground and fit within the rules. Resist the urge to tweak your Axial body with a pair of seaming pliers and you’re good to go.


 

SORRCA Rule  • Any removal of material from behind the front wheel well (except trim/molding) is considered a boat side.

Cutting the body along the red line would be considered 'Boat Siding."

Cutting the body along the red line would be considered ‘Boat Siding.”

Put the scissors down and step away from the body. It is ok to trim your fender flares or molding from the body, but in doing so, make certain not to remove material from the fender on an angle greater than the removed flare. Simply altering the angle of the wheel-well opening is considered boat siding and can gain an advantage on the trail as well as take away from the scale look SORRCA is trying to maintain. 


 

SORRCA Rule • Sectioning or narrowing of the body is not allowed.

Trug

Sectioning and narrowing a body, although more commonly practiced on ABS hardbodies because they are easier to glue back together is a way to reduce the chances of the body hanging up on rocks and obstacles. In this practice you are physically taking material away from the body in order to gain precious clearance that can help you gain an advantage. In doing so, you take away from the realistic scale appearance of a factory look.

 

GET SORRCA READY
If you are looking for every advantage possible during a SORRCA event, running factory Axial bodies with minor tweaks is an advantage. Consider the lightweight Lexan SCX10 II Jeep Cherokee XJ or Jeep Rubicon or Jeep Wrangler Unlimited with the flares removed. This will give you additional wheel clearance that could make a difference on the trails. On to Part 5; bed time…

The Perfect Fit: SORRCA Class 1 Ready SCX10 / SCX10 II | PART 3: BODY

AX17_SCX10_II_SORRCA_CLASS_part3

Onto part Three of our SCX10 and SCX10 II SORRCA fitment guide and in this installment, we’re going to talk about the body. We’ve seen many builders get creative with Axial bodies, turning them from clear Lexan shells into unique scale masterpieces. Of course being unique is what sets you and your rig apart from others, but in SORRCA’s Class 1 guidelines, it appears it should be done in a way that maintains a realistic scale look.

FOCUS 3: BODY
SORRCA Rule • Bodies should be mounted in a realistic position in relation to the chassis (like a 1:1 would be).

SORRCA 3

Well, if you thought you were going to shift a cab body all the way to the back of your rig like some George Barris creation, it may not fly under SORRCA rules. The rule is pretty self explanatory, the body should be placed in a realistic position. Axial’s SCX10 II with XJ body fits in these rules as long as you follow the body instructions on the kit version or leave your RTR as is. Axial’s other body offerings on the SCX10 chassis can easily fit these rules as long as your imagination doesn’t go too far off track during your build.


 

SORRCA Rule • Vehicle must have a windshield that fills the entire windshield frame.

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You’re in luck, every Axial body comes with a windshield and as long as you don’t go wielding your rotary tool or hack at the windshield with your scissors in some sort of jaws of life incident, passing this rule should be a breeze. The SCX10 II XJ has a full windshield, the Wrangler Rubicon, full windshield, you get the idea.


 

SORRCA Rule • The vehicles body must be mostly intact. Only mild trimming is allowed, such as removing: flairs, trim, molding & a hardtop. If the hardtop is removed, a full interior is required (no extreme trimming of bodies allowed)

ax90028_scx10_jeep_rtr_chassis_20_800x533

Let’s face it, customizing your rig is one of the best parts of the scale model scene, but SORRCA wants to see your modifications done within reason. The key here is to be scale and of course rigs like the SCX10 II Jeep XJ, Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon fall right into place with the scale rules. If you do choose to run the Unlimited Wrangler Rubicon body, it can be used with or without the cap. The Rubicon’s molded interior qualifies as a full interior. The XJ has a full roof, so of course it doesn’t need an interior unless you add one. If however you do want to chop the top or even add scale points, you can get creative and used an interior chopped out of the Rubicon body as the interior for your XJ. Is it an replica interior? Obviously no, but it is an interior option that can be utilized. Remember, one of the best parts of scale crawling is using your imagination and craftsmanship.

GET SORRCA READY
There are always some that want to twist or bend the rules and we understand the urge. It is those what if’s that can really help make your rig into something that stands out from the rest and may perform better too. But SORRCA’s intent is obvious, the RC trails should be filled with vehicles that look scale in Class 1. Next up in our SORRCA fitment guide; Body Mods. Wait what? We just told you not to modify the body. Stay tuned!

SCX10 II Rubicon Trail Adventure With Photo Pro Brad Perry

 

SCX10 II Rubicon Trail Adventure

Mention the name Rubicon Trail and just about anyone you speak to will say they’ve heard of it whether they are into 4×4 off-roading or not. If by some reason, like you’ve been abducted by aliens for most of your life and you’ve never heard of the Rubicon Trail, here is the short of it. The trail’s origination actually began as an Indian trading route and in the 1800’s became a service road, but over time lessened in use and the terrain degraded. The scenic trail with unique terrain then became a favorite for explorers and adventurers. In the early 1950’s, the trail sprung back to life as the Jeepers Jamboree event picked the trail as its home. The trail that spans from from Georgetown, CA to Tahoma, CA at Lake Tahoe and has basically become internationally known as an ultimate destination for hiking, 4X4′s, motorcycle or quad, or mountain bike adventures.

That leads us to the story of Brad Perry, a hiker, adventurist, professional photographer and more importantly, an Axial RC fanatic. Brad joined the media at Axialfest 2017 and captured some amazing moments from the event, so our eyes were on his work. Then he posted a photo (above) from his recent trek on the Rubicon Trail, that he organized himself, to his social media. Brad had our attention once again and we got a hold of him to tell his story of the trip.

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About:
Name: Brad Perry
Age: 32
Hometown: Born and raised in Livermore, CA but I have lived in South Lake Tahoe, CA for the past 11 years
Profession: Owner of Von Perry Photography and Freelance photographer
Hobbies: Bouldering, Hiking, Riding all types of bikes

Prep:
Prior hikes – I hike almost every day for work. If I’m not out shooting some kind of action sports, I’m in my local area hiking around with my wife, dog and RC. When it comes to the Rubicon I had hiked the trail multiple times for other photo assignments so I had a lot of prior knowledge of the trail.
Physical prep – I knew I could hike the mileage with no issue but I had to do a lot of overall prep. I did 3 prior hikes that were around 12-14 miles each. I had to figure out what mileage the truck was getting so I didn’t run out of battery power and I had to figure out my overall pace so I could plan on being picked up at the finish.

Gear:
Clothing  – Shorts and my Axial t-shirt
Shoes – Altra Timps
Backpack –North Face Mega Mouth
Headlamp- Petzl Tikka
Supplies – Sony A7s Camera, Canon 16-35mm and a 50mm lens, folding tripod, iPhone6s, tools if anything breaks on trail.
Extra parts – Front and rear drivelines, C-hubs and knuckles, steering servo, a servo horn and a few misc screws.

Nutrition:
Food and hydration – Two PB&J sandwiches, one Cliff Bar and some beef jerky. Two Lemonade Rockstar Recovery energy drinks. 50oz of Skratch Labs exercise hydration mix and 50oz of water.

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The Rig:
Axial SCX10 II RTR
Upgrades – Axial 1.9 BFGoodrich Krawler T/A’s, Vanquish shock hoops, Vanquish Method 105’s, CI single stage foams, HR hardened trans gears, Proline 4runner body
Special mods – None
Electronics – Castle Mamba-X with a 1410 3800kv brushless system. Spektrum DX4C radio system. Stock steering servo.
Lighting  No lighting on the rig.
Batteries – I took 6 Venom 2s 5000mha 50c batteries. I used about 28,500mha in total.
The radios batteries held up just fine.

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Challenges:
The trail itself is very challenging just to hike. It’s not your normal well groomed hiking trail. Lots of loose rock and silt covered slabs. Traction and footing is a constant issue. I knew I wanted to go fast but I needed to be safe at the same time. Twisting an ankle out that far with no support is something you have in the back of your mind the whole time. I was also on the trail during very low traffic times so the hopes of a ride out were low.

Tough obstacles- I had it in my mind that areas like Big Sluice and Little Sluice were going to be my biggest issues. The water crossing at Buck Island was also a worry. Funny thing was the hardest obstacle ended up being the Buck Island Dam. It’s a little taller than a curb and is only passible in one direction with the truck. When you go the other way you have to go way up by the bathrooms and down into one of the trailside camps. The other thing that had me worried was the amount of silt on the trail. In some places it was 3 inches deep. Other than that the SCX10 II handled it all like a champ.

Damage:
I only had one issue on both passes and it was a total mistake. In the first few hours of my first trip I bent over to tie my shoe and hit the trigger. I sent my truck into a huge rock at full speed and stripped the plastic servo horn. I quickly pulled out the tools and had it fixed in minutes. The overall performance of the SCX10 II RTR was amazing.

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HOG- On my first trip I rolled 6 times in total but only ended up on my roof turtled twice to where I had to pick it up. On the second trip I had a few more because I was going a lot faster. There were no points where the truck couldn’t make it up something and I had to pick it up over the obstacle. That’s one of the best parts of this trail.
Memorable Moment- It’s hard to narrow down just one part of the trail as being the most memorable. One of my favorite areas on the trail is the top of the slabs overlooking Buck Island Lake and the whole surrounding valley. My most memorable moment was an older gentlemen asking me if I was hiking or driving the trail? I chuckled and said both. I have to place the tires in the right places don’t I? He laughed and agreed.

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Overall Experience- I started both of my hikes around 4AM completely solo. Hiking on the Loon Lake side on the open granite slabs under the stars was great. On my second trip leaving Tahoma you have about 6 miles of heavily wooded trail. I found my mind racing a little at times thinking I was hearing animals in the bushes. Wondering if a bear was going to come out and start chasing the truck like a playful dog. I did both of my trips mid-week so I ran into very little traffic on the trail. I only saw 2 people my first time and 6 or so on the second. The trail is really amazing because it’s consistently challenging end to end. Even if you try to make it easy on yourself you still end up doing a great deal of difficult crawling. I stopped at the same places along the trail on both trips. I took breaks at Buck Island and Observation Point and then ate food at the middle point at Rubicon Springs. When I first did the trail I parked my car at Loon Lake and left it there with the plan of picking it up the next day. I had so much fun the first time I took two days to recover and hiked it back the other direction to pick my car up. The Rubicon is a blast and I would do it again any time.

I definitely have a few people to thank for the helping get this done. Everyone at CKRC, Castle Creations, Venom Power, SF Threads, Scale Ultra, SBG, Altra Running and Axial Racing! I also couldn’t have done this without the support of my wife. She sat in a parking lot waiting to pick me up with no cell service for hours, then 2 days later woke up at 3am to drop me off so I could do it all again.

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Trip Stats
Trip 1
Start-The Rubicon sign at the Loon Lake Staging
Finish-The sign at “Tahoma Staging” – McKinney-Rubicon Springs Staging
Miles: 15.77
Time: 8 hours 31 minutes 46 seconds
Vert: 2744ft
Rest: 3-10 minute breaks
Weight: Backpack was 21lbs

Trip 2
Start: The sign at “Tahoma Staging” – McKinney-Rubicon Springs Staging
Finish: The Rubicon sign at the Loon Lake Staging
Miles 15.77
Time: 6 hours 42 minutes 47 seconds
Vert: 2502ft
Rest 3-10 minute breaks
Weight: backpack 21lbs

BVP27

Adventure Inspiration
Brad’s trip was certainly an exciting trip from the details given and through some amazing photos. His trip was not the first time an RC rig hit the Rubicon Trail. Among many others, the Axial team hit the trails too with the release of the SCX10™ 2012 Jeep® Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon; you can see that adventure HERE. We’re sure there will be many more adventures too that will hit the terrain with an Axial RC trail machine in hand. But Brad’s story is inspirational. Brad hit the trail alone, with the right amount of supplies and a nearly stock SCX10 II rig that made the length of the trail without major issue. Also in record time for an RC machine with Brad pushing hard both driving and hiking. We hope this inspires you to take your Axial Adventure to the next level too. Find and design your own RC experience and be sure to tag it with #AxialAdventure as it is becoming a way of life that many want to see and share.

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How To – Program Your ESC For NiMH Batteries

 

Program_NiMH_Batteries

Axial’s Ready-to-Run (RTR) vehicles are true hobby-grade products and, as such, they use sophisticated electronic components. One of the primary advantages to such high-tech gear is adjustability and an area of adjustability includes battery type. Axial’s electronic speed controls (ESCs) are designed to be used with a variety of battery chemistry types and can, and should, be adjusted for the type of battery you’re using.

IMPORTANT NOTE: As a safety measure, Axial uses the LiPo setting as the default setting on the ESC, but NiMH batteries, are often recommended for use with RTRs. NiMH batteries will provide best performance when the ESC is used in NiMH mode.

nimh_and_lipo

LiPo batteries must be run with the ESC set in LiPo for safe use. This isn’t optional. When properly set in LiPo mode, Axial ESCs are designed to eliminate the chance of over discharging the battery and permanently damaging it, which is a potential safety issue. As such, LiPo batteries should never be used in any other mode other than LiPo mode on the ESC.

NiMH batteries will work in LiPo mode, but there will be a noticeable reduction in performance that will suddenly become apparent as the pack starts to lose voltage (discharge). This is because LiPo mode has what is called LiPo cutoff or low voltage cutoff. As the voltage drops in the NiMH pack, it is still delivering usable power, but the LiPo cutoff engages and impairs performance. The LiPo cutoff is designed to reduce power to the motor in order to keep the battery at a safe minimum voltage. Let’s go over setting up NiMh mode on the various Axial ESC offerings so you can get maximum performance when using this type of battery.


 

axial ae-2 esc

AE-2. The AE-2 is a brushed motor speed control. While Castle Creation’s Castle Link system can be used to link the ESC up to a computer (availabe as an aftermarket item,) for ease of use, the AE-2 can be programmed manually by using the throttle trigger on your transmitter to indicate yes or or no to selections as you scroll through each option. To get the best performance when using a NiMH, the ESC should be programmed to operate in NiMH mode.

When programming, as a safety measure, remove the pinion from the motor. This will prevent the gears and/or vehicle from moving and causing damage to the vehicle or you. Turn the transmitter on and then connect a freshly charged battery to the ESC. Hold full throttle and turn on the ESC. You will hear four tones from the ESC and then another four tones. After the second series of four tones, release the throttle. The ESC will beep twice indicating you’re in programming mode.

There are three settings that can be adjusted on the AE-3. Each setting, in turn, has a varying number of options. You will use your transmitter’s throttle to select yes (full throttle) or no (full brake) for each option. When you select yes, the next setting will come up. Every time you select no, you will toggle to the next option within that setting. When you select yes or no, wait for a continuous tone and let the throttle go to neutral. If you selected yes, the ESC will go to the next setting.

To change to NiMH mode, you will need to go to the first setting. Remember, LiPo batteries must be used LiPo mode.

Setting 1 LiPo Cutoff
Option 1: None (NiMH mode)
Option 2: Auto-LiPo*

Setting 2 Drag Brake
Option 1: Disabled
Option 2: 15%
Option 3: 25%
Option 4: 40%
Option 5: 50%
Option 6: 100%*

3: Brake/Reverse Type
Option 1: Reverse enabled (2-second lockout)
Option 2: Reverse disabled
Option 3: Forward/Brake/Reverse*
* = Default factory setting

For additional reference, view the manual: HERE


 

axial ae-3 esc

Vanguard AE-3. The Vanguard AE-3 is a brushless motor speed control. It comes preprogrammed in the “Auto-LiPo” mode. Like the AE-2, you can use the Castle-Link to program the ESC with your PC, but you can also manually program the ESC with your transmitter.

When programming, as a safety measure, remove the pinion from the motor. This will prevent the gears and/or vehicle from moving and causing damage to the vehicle or you. Turn the transmitter on and then connect a freshly charged battery to the ESC. Hold full throttle and then turn on the ESC. You will hear four tones from the ESC and then another four tones. After the second series of four tones, release the throttle. The ESC will beep twice indicating you’re in programming mode.

There are nine settings that can be adjusted. Each setting, in turn, has a varying number of options. You will use your transmitter’s throttle to select yes (full throttle) or no (full brake) for each option. When you select yes, the next setting will come up. Every time you select no, you will toggle to the next option within that setting. When you select yes or no, wait for a continuous tone and let the throttle go to neutral. If you selected yes, the ESC will go to the next setting.

To change to NiMH mode, you will need to go through settings one through six to get to setting seven, which changes the battery mode. Remember, LiPo batteries must be used LiPo mode.

Setting 1 Brake/Reverse Type
Option 1: With Reverse*
Option 2: Without Reverse
Option 3: Crawler Reverse. No delay from throttle to brake to reverse.

Setting 2 Brake Amount
Option 1: 25% Power
Option 2: 50% Power*
Option 3: 75% Power
Option 4: 100% Power

Setting 3 Reverse Amount
Option 1: 25% Power
Option 2: 50% Power*
Option 3: 75% Power
Option 4: 100% Power

Setting 4 Punch/Traction Control
Option 1: High
Option 2: Medium
Option 3: Low
Option 4: Lowest
Option 5: Disabled*

Setting 5 Drag Brake
Option 1: Drag Brake off*
Option 2: Drag Brake 10%
Option 3: Drag Brake 20%
Option 4: Drag Brake 30%
Option 5: Drag Brake 40%

Setting 6 Dead Band
Option 1: Large – 0.1500 ms
Option 2: Normal – 0.1000 ms*
Option 3: Small – 0.0750 ms
Option 4: Very Small – 0.0500 ms
Option 5: Smallest – 0.0250 ms

Setting 7 Cutoff Voltage
Option 1: No low-voltage cutoff
Option 2: Auto-Lipo*
Option 3: 5v
Option 4: 6v
Option 5: 9v
Option 6: 12v

Setting 8 Motor Timing
Option 1: Lowest
Option 2: Normal*
Option 3: Highest

Setting 9 Motor Type
Option 1: Brushless*
Option 2: Brushed Reversing
Option 3: Brushed High Power
* = Default factory setting

For additional reference, view the manual: HERE


 

axial ae-5 esc

AE-5. The AE-5 is a brushed speed control and is by far the easiest ESC to program. To switch from the factory LiPo mode, remove the “jumper” and move it over one position. Not only is this ESC easy to program, it’s also waterproof.

For additional reference, view the manual: HERE

Axial AE-5


 

ae-1

AE-1. Axial’s AE-1 ESC does not have a LiPo cutoff. If you use LiPo batteries in a vehicle equipped with an AE-1 ESC you must use a separate LiPo low-voltage cut-off device. Axial does not sell a separate LiPo cut-off device, so the best choice would be to upgrade to an ESC such as the Axial AE-5 (see above), which is extremely easy to program and waterproof.

Tungsten Peak Trail RC Adventure Hike – Bishop California

TungstenPeakTrail_Dec2011
Words & Photos: Rodney Wills

On Dec 27, 2011, I published what had to be my single longest blog post with a massive amount of photos! It’s practically three separate stories all smashed into one long blog! One in particular is buried way down at the bottom. It was a little SCX10 Adventure Hike that I did while on my way home back from Reno, Nevada in the cold December of 2011.
So, I figured I would re-purpose that portion into a single blog post.

Tungsten Peak Trail RC Adventure Hike – Bishop California
December 3rd, 2011 – Reno, Nevada – Weather: High of 28 °F with a low of 19 °F

It’s O’dark:30, it’s the closing ceremony with fingers, ears, noes and toes freezing cold, but the event prizes are flowing! Freezing and all, everyone had a great day and a great closer to a great year. We all said our goodbyes and wishes for safe travel, happy holidays and all that good stuff. I put the ADV80 in “D” and in the wind with my Jack Sparrow compass sent in a homeward direction, with a couple of side-trip plans in route.

I hate going to the same place twice unless overall conditions are different. I tent camped in Davis Creek Campground last night, and I have chosen to pass it on my way home as I have intentions on doing some R/C scout-inspection of the Ridgcrest area of the California desert.

So I hit the road..
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I depart Reno making my way back down HWY395 through Gardnerville. They have  awesome small town charm and their Gardnerville’s Carson Valley Christmas lights have the streets lit with holiday cheer. It made me think of my wife and may have been on the phone with her tell her about the sights of this small town and how she would like to visit it.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Carrying on with X-mass lights blurring by, and two and half hours and 120-miles later, I’m in the Mammoth area.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011

On down HWY 395 I cut off at Toms Place in Mono County.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I wanted to see what was up there and made my way up Rock Creek Road passing Rock Creek Group Campground.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Rock Creek Lake looks like a nice place! Need to see it in the daylight!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
At this point I decided to head back down and save this road and adventure for another day.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
FOOD! Too late – they are closed… I bet its a great place to eat. Wishful thinking.

Back on the road:
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011

I land just North of Bishop, Ca around 10:00PM, and I was tired.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I pull off HWY395 on a little dirt side road to find a tent “pitchable” location.
I found a big powerline dirt road that traversed the mountain side. Found a little cutoff road from there that led me to a dead-end into a hillside with a 100ft drop-off. There was a nearby trailhead marker so I was hoping to make this the camping location.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Gave a quick 360º inspection, saw a trail-marker which noted that this is a hiking trail called Tungsten Peak Trailhead, making this the perfect camping spot for the night.

First things first:
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Set up the tent and dig a fire pit and get it going!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Get the Jetboil PCS stove fired up and boiling water!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
DING DING – Dinner is served via Mountain House! Tonight is Beef Stroganoff night. Boiling some more water for some hot tea! It’s rather CHILLY OUT HERE!!!HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
After dinner I set the camera up for a couple of night shots. Check out our
Night Photography Tips blog by Ian Coble. I should’ve had him with me on this trip!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Moring View from the tent
Next morning, this is the view from the tent window. I was expecting the sun to come blazing into my tent, but that was just wishful warm thinking. Temperature is in the low 20′s. Due to being nestled back into a little canyon of sort, the ridge was blocking the direct sunlight.

So I crack open the sleeping bag to chilly morning air that has yet to be touched directly by the warm sun. I check out my surroundings under the peaceful early light of day.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Today, seeing how I’ve discovered this trailhead, my mission is to drive my Axial SCX10 Trail Honcho as far as possible up the Tungsten Peak Trail and see what I can see. I didn’t drive during the event yesterday, but that does not mean that I didn’t wish to participate, I was simply doing my job of documenting the event. But I too am a enthusiast! I’m nowhere near as hardcore as you guys, but I do like my R/C adventures, just a little differently than most, as you are about to see. I think you like to do the same though…

It’s still chilly in the shadows of the ridge as I set off on my RC adventure hike.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
The sun has finally broken over the ridge, but it is still very chilly outside and the sun has yet to reach me.

A desert motorcycle riding buddy once told me to not let your hands get cold as they will hurt when I get older, he is in his late 50′s and so I see his troubles with his hands and took to heart his words. Warm gloves it is!!!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I’ve had these gloves for a long time as I bought them to shoot photos during my trip to Rally Great Britain in 2001. It was raining and COLD and these gloves proved CHAMPION! These are actually wool mittens. The thumb has a slit in it so I can stick the thumb out for critical touch situations when needed. Same with the fingers, but they are 3/4′s covered with a mitten cap that wraps over, so when I need those indexers, I can pull the cap-mitten part back. Or as you see here, just one digit out so I can feel the throttle.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011

Finally!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Finally some direct SUNLIGHT on me!

That means I can pause for a break, lose a layer and grab some super-nutrition!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
POP TARTS! I’m known for eating “cardboard” as my buddy ScottG calls them, you know granola bars and such, but today I treated myself to something that I found in the cabinet at the house before leaving on this trip and stashed it into my backpack. SORRY KIDS!

Onward and upward.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Me and my SCX10 Trail Honcho are on the go!

I keep looking back:
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
My 1:1 rig and camp get smaller and smaller.

The trail ahead of me gets more technical:
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
We press on.. We, as in me and my trusty SCX10…
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011

The SCX10 Trail Honcho just plain works!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
It gets a bit hairy in sections, and my mind wonders – how far will the SCX10 Trail Honcho go?

Just staying calm, searching out the lines, and being patient is half the battle.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
It’s a chess board and you have to survey all your options.

BUT sometimes….
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
You reach that spot…
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Checkmate! NO matter how many times I tried, I could not get the truck up the crevasse even to the point of where I would roll the rig over on its lid several times attempting to make it through. I was trying to stay scale and then went full KOH-mode, but the obstacle was too hard to tackle,  beyond the limits of the truck capabilities, and/or at the end of my driving talent.

Yes, I could have used a winch at this point, but it’s sitting on the workbench back at the office. I contemplate if the Axial Wraith would have been a better trail rig choice? Would it have made it through this section? This was it for the SCX10, and I am a SCX10 purist. Even if a 2.2-rig could have made it, for me, its not the same as a SCX10 on 1.9-tires. More realistic. What is real for me is different than say, a Casey Currie or Cody Waggoner. They can haul any vehicle to any location, offload it and drive that rig through whatever they wish. Heck, they even have street-going vehicles on 40″ tires. That is not my reality, thus my choice in R/C I like to keep in the same realm. I do own a Wraith, but that is not my rig of choice is all I am simply stating. I love my Axial SCX10 Honcho. And truth be told, this is my OG original Honcho that I’ve owned before coming to work here. It’s so old, it has the brown-channel sticker on the radio box to prove that it was once a FM transmitting rig previously. Carrying on… sorry!

I preview the entire area. No spots to drive around, no other route for passage. This is one of those moments where I could have easily HOG’ed it [Hand Of God] up the tricky section and move on. But, that is not my style. This is where I toss in the towel and chalk it up to be done another day, on another adventure and give it to chance that I come through here again, better equipped. Or time willing, to construct a ramp-bridge of sort.

But today, this is where I pack it up:
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Literally. I put the SCX10 on my backpack.  BUT, I wish to continue this little adventure further up for scouting purposes as the terrain shows signs of a promising valley ahead.

I look back and take a moment to reflect on what has occurred thus far! I was proud of my little feat.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
It was a good fight to get to this point…
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
And what laid ahead… I WAS SO CLOSE TO MAKING IT!!!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
As I progress on my hike with the SCX10 strapped to my backpack, I can see the valley ahead. Again, I was so close! My heart was torn by the the beauty and the ferocious, rugged rock.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
The rocks where laughing at me with it’s mock torn heart shape!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Very strange – very cool rock formations to be seen up here.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I finally reach the little valley.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
This area looks like an RC Playground Paradise to me!

I go out to the edge of this little valley, and see that it overlooks my camp area below:
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011

After a bit of exploring this little valley, I see that the trails continue on up the next ledge, so I follow:
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
This only reveals more peaks and another large peak/ridge barely poking up in the background. Curiosity draws me in…HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Look closely on the back ridge and slightly left of center, you will see strong wind peeling snow off the lip into the sky. It is December, and that is some howling wind!

I have yet another hill in front of me to reach that peak:
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
The below photo is an 180° view opposite from the above photo, looking out across HWY395.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
What a spectacular view as well! There are just amazing sights of wild rock formations in every direction.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I call it the lean-to UFO crash rock shelter. You just wonder how these rocks got into these shapes and positions. It’s as though the fell from the sky and stabbed the dirt!

As any good photographer would do, a self portrait in action. For scale purposes only.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
One foot in front of the other, taking my time, slow and steady and I will get there,
wherever there is. That’s the quest, the question of curiosity leads to adventure!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I think I am about to make a little summit on the Tungsten Peak Trail!

AND YES – SUMMIT!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
SPECTACULAR VIEWS IN EVERY DIRECTION!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I make the peak! And find more interesting views and formations.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
And looky-looky here! I’ve discovered my second geocache by accident!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I place a Axial sticker on the container, place an Axial sticker sheet inside and sign the register.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Jacket goes back on as it was even colder due to the wind on top of Tungsten Peak!

Like all mountain peak pursuits, the top is only the half way point.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
The decent down is all ahead of me now.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
WOW, my truck, of which cannot be seen at this point, IS WAY DOWN THERE!

It’s comforting…
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
To see my 1:1 rig again. Yet, it is still way down there, but I can see it.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I’m back to the little mid-valley, so I take a moment for a break.

I see lines… I see driving lines…
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
And I see more driving lines… this rock playground is a R/C climbing mecca of a playground! This could make for a great pack in, camp overnight shoot session!
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
An oddity of rock formation all around!HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Dropping back into the final canyon.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I call this the handrail chute. This was the area that put an end to my SCX10
Tungsten Peak Challenge. Next time…

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I see the tire marks and begin to wonder what other hikers might think when they see these little tire tracks on this steep trail.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
My ADV80 is in view once again.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I think there is a super hero sleeping in these rocks. Guess who?

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
This concludes my solo hike SCX10 adventure on the Tungsten Peak Trail.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I take a moment to see my whole camp in the sunlight, the ridge I just came down, and I contemplate coming back with maybe a small group of us to run our rigs in the valley just above. Or maybe you will find yourself here, just as I have, and make a solo-trip of it!

I think about that big snow-blown Sierra ridge that was across from the peak I had climbed and know that I am not ready for a big back country backpacking trip.
You know, like Mt Whitney or the PCT! But we all have to dream!HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
As I head out on the dirt road, I look back in the mirror and see the majestic mountain taunting me, calling me back.

Further down the road in Lone Pine…
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
My view of the Sierra’s massive ridge is constant. There’s the PCT Trail that runs the length of it…actually it runs the length of California and beyond. Our dreams are what keeps us driven.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I finally make it to the Ridgecrest / Jawbone area.
Dirt Diggers Camp Road HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I run a quick scouting loop and up onto this little plateau. The sun is falling fast already,
but it never really gets overhead during the winter months, thus the day seems short.

I climb back in the rig and back onto the tarmac of HWY395 for the final journey home.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I’m still looking down every dirt road and scanning the horizon, searching for what…?
I don’t know for sure, but I keep looking… in a wanderlust search for a new adventure. When I find it, I will know… I hope I never do… I hope I keep looking… at everything through curiosity! I see I am not the only one seeking adventure as I pull up along side
this guy in Victorville. At least his bike represents adventure even though he may just be going to the store.
HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
The fastest AFFORDABLE way to cover a lot of ground in the desert is on two wheels.
Yes, I love my dirt bikes too.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
The sun is going down fast. At arms length – four fingers is approx 1-hour / each finger 15-minutes. See page 53 of the Backpacker’s Guide.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
Through the Cajon Pass, the sun is filtered by clouds making for awesome lighting.

HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
I’m coming into Corona and I see the last ridge I will cross and I will be home. That is my little Saddleback / Santa Ana Mountains and our Axial office sits on the other side as well.

From the peak of this mountain there’s an ocean view. We do get snow on it and it is in Orange County, California. It’s my little quick adventure spot; be it on foot, mountain bike, motorcycle or truck and yes, even the R/C rigs have seen some action up there.

Mountain peaks are great for reflection and contemplation, but the only way you are going to get on top of one is to just get after it. You can read, talk and think about it all day and you will do that forever. But one day you just have to make a call to action and actually GO do it! GO! Find your adventure!

My first year working here at Axial has been an amazing time that has just flown by at light-speed!

GODSPEED TO YOU ALL – HAPPY HOLIDAYS and
MAKE LIFE AN ADVENTURE!

Tungsten Peak Trailhead HWY 395 Trip To RECON G6 BDAY Bash 2011
- rodney wills / AXIAL RC Adventure Hiker

Product Spotlight: AX31150 Axial Clear Inner Fenders

AX31150 Axial Inner Fenders

While prepping my truck for this years #AXIALFEST2017 (ok, my wife’s truck), I happened to notice one of my fellow co-workers bolting on a set of inner fenders onto his SCX10 II XJ. I asked him where he got those and he informed me it was an actual Axial product, just maybe one that wasn’t so well known.

Of course, I had to investigate further – AX31150 is in fact a molded piece of .40″ clear Lexan that not only includes 4 inner fenders, it also has floor panels for trucks that don’t have them (the SCX10 for example). In addition to giving you extra space to mount electronics, it also acts as a barrier to help keep mud, water and other debris from entering the chassis.

Product Spotlight: AX31150 Axial Clear Inner Fenders

As you can see, it comes clear and can be painted any color you want (I’m going with from-the-factory black). A strip of double-sided tape is included to securely attach them to the side rails. Another cool thing is that they are a universal fit; you can trim them to match almost any body you decide to use.

So, for those of you that like to do some serious trailing but are worried about splashing grit and grime all up in your chassis, here’s a simple solution. I’ve added a few pix of these mounted on the SCX10 II, however as you can see I’ve left off the floor panels since this particular truck already comes with them.

Product Spotlight: AX31150 Axial Clear Inner Fenders

Product Spotlight: AX31150 Axial Clear Inner Fenders

Product Spotlight: AX31150 Axial Clear Inner Fenders

Product Spotlight: AX31150 Axial Clear Inner Fenders

AX31150 Axial SCX10 Wheel Wells – .040″ (Clear)