I've been sent a couple of emails asking me to share some building tips, so if you didn't get my email, (and if anyone is interested) here it is for everyone to share:
As far as building tips are concerned:
1. Take your time! I can't stress how much better the car will turn out when your done.
2. Use a 3mm and 4mm (4mm for the droop screws) taps using a tap handle. This adds time to your build, but it makes the screws go in A LOT easier than not using it. Use a little grease when "tapping" the holes, it will help keep the parts from heating up and possibly deforming slightly.
When threading the turnbuckles into the ball cups, be sure to use some chapstick or similar wax. This will help the turnbuckles go into the ball cups with greater ease.
3. When assembling the front and rear gear boxes, play around with the shims till you get it smooth. I was able to spin the drive gear and diff gears with ease, after playing around with the shims. Once you find a nice spot, see if you can make the mesh just "one shim" tighter. This will help prevent breakage. Also, watch how tight you tighten down the screws, you only need to keep them "snug" not cranked down.
When Building the Differential, be sure to take your time and not overtighten the diff screw. Ensure that the inner ring is ca'd in (take your time!!). Assemble the diff, and as you tighten the screw, work the diff, and so till it becomes nice and tight. After breaking in the diff by running it at moderate speeds, be sure to disassemble and re-lube. I've found that the diff needs to be run on the tighter side.
4. That reminds me: don't forget to BOIL your gears, not literally, of course. Boil water, let it sit for two minutes, then transfer into a large pyrex glass bowl. drop gears in and let cool naturally. I did this in the morning, and by the time I got home after work, they were ready to go. make sure you dry them well. Also check for any warping or deformaties.
I recommend the use of White lightning or similar product, I feel the gears can benefit from some sort of lube. Even the silver grease will work that comes with the kit.
In regards to gear stripping: Get yourself the PRP Gear brace http://www.teamprpracing.com/
which will help save your gears from getting stripped by supporting the gear. I'd also recommend their "Tru Spin" spur gear brace, which will help keep your spur spinning nice and true.
5. With every component you start putting onto the lower chassis, make sure you screw them in a "cross" pattern:
1 - 4
3 - 2
before screwing the top deck, be sure to place the chassis on a flat and smooth surface. Then tighten using Erik Shauver's recommended method:
Hpi Pro 4
scroll down to his post and click on his link...it'll tell you the order in which to tighten the top deck down.
I've actually found that you need to include the outer screws that tighten down the gearbox. Just remember to tighten them in the above cross pattern.
6. Seal the edge of the lower chassis, upperdeck and shock towers
7. File/seal the battery slots like the directions say
If your going to be using strapping tape to hold your batteries in, be sure to file the small slots where the tape passes.
8. you DO NOT have to de-shield the bearings, they are smooth already, and free up once you start running the car. Just be sure to keep them clean and well oiled.