Join Date: Mar 2011
3Racing TT-01 M Conversion Kit Review
Okay, boys and girls, I recently picked up a 3Racing TT-01 M Conversion kit. Now, keep in mind, I’ve only driven the car for a total of 25 minutes so far, so this review will NOT be on the details of driving it and working on it. This review is mostly for the assembly of the kit. I will note some of the problem areas I came across while building this kit. I will also have a listing of the TT-01 parts you will need, in addition to the kit, along with the prices, to complete this car.
First off, the instructions suck! I wasn’t expecting much considering this kit is made in China and I figured some items would get lost in translation and well, I wasn’t wrong. Do NOT expect Tamiya quality instructions here folks! There are NO written instructions included in the manual. There are listings of parts needed for a particular step, the bags you get the parts from and sometimes, a listing of the TT-01 parts needed, which, if it’s there, is usually incomplete. This is why I went to great lengths to make up the list of parts needed, the bags they come in, the price for each and yes, even the parts you will actually use from each bag.
While building the kit, in several places, there are measurements in the manual. These measurements are wrong!! They will give you something to start from, but don’t spend too much time getting them close as you will only change them once you get the kit together. The distance between the ball cups on the steering links and the amount the droop screws stick out of the bottom of the arms are two of the areas that I’m referring to. If I remember right, they don’t even give you a distance to set the camber links to, front and back, so when you get the car together, they will be WAY off!
The last thing of note from the manual is you can use the separate diff cover and shock towers from the TT-01E or the combined diff cover/shock tower from the original TT-01. They don’t state this in the manual, but I used the original TT-01 parts without issue. The manual shows to use the separate parts from the TT-01E though and those are the parts I will list later in this review.
(Part description, Tamiya part number, parts used from bag & cost)
Screw Bag A (MA7, MA11, MA8, MA13, MA14 & MA15) - $10
Screw Bag B (MA8, MA13, MA14, MA15 & MB2) - $9
Screw Bag C (MA11 & MC9) - $4
Ball Bearing Set (TAM53497) (12 – 11x5x4 & 4 – 12x8x3.5) - $18.39
Gear Bag (TAM51004) (GB1, GB2, GB3, GB4 & GB5) - $5.09
A Parts (TAM51318) (A9, A10, A6, A3, A1, & A7) - $3.99
P Parts (TAM51005) (P7, P3, P1, P2, P4 & P5) - $3.39
Shaft Bag (TAM51006) (C5, C4, C2 & C3) - $6.59
(2) M3x6 Cap Head Screws (Motor)
(4) M3x8 Flat Head Screws (Shock Towers)
(2) M3x16 Button Head Screws (Shock Towers)
(4) M3x23 Button Head Screws (Shock Towers)
(4) M3x8 Button Head Screws (Kingpins)
Note: The screws for the shock towers may change depending on which diff covers/shock towers you use.
Additional Parts Needed to Complete
Pinion gear & screw
Shocks (with springs and mounting screws/balls)
The reason I included the prices for all of the Tamiya parts at the beginning of the Parts List is this, add them all together and they total just over $60. This does NOT include shipping cost. Another thing to note is the screw bags are hard to find. This is why the cost is so high on them. Since you mostly need them for pins, diff cover screws, etc., you may be able to source the items from you local Hardware store. You can generally pick up a TT-01 roller or part lot for under $60, so it will probably be cheaper to do that instead of buying all the Tamiya parts separately. Another thing to consider is this, if like me, you already own a TT-01, you already have a lot of the required parts for this conversion.
Once I got the car put together and on the track, I was overall impressed with the car. I have not had much time with it to dial it in or to even get the gearing figured out. I have come across a couple of things that need to be addressed though.
1) The battery is held in with a Velcro strap. There is NOTHING holding the battery in place from sliding out of the car from the side. You will need to come up with something to fix this. For now, I put some double-sided tape along the chassis, on the outside of the battery, but long term, I will make up some new battery holders that have lips on them, similar to the TC6 design.
2) I already have an M-05 Mini Cooper, so to reduce cost; I stole the body from it to put on the MT-01 (as I call it). Two problems. First, the rear body post do not line up with the existing holes in the body. I didn’t want to drill additional holes in the body, so I made up some spacers to extend the body post out, away from the shock towers, further. Second, no matter how you set up the wheelbase, without modifying anything, the front tires will rub on the inside of the body. It will do this to the point of nearly stopping the car. Conclusion – don’t use the Mini Cooper body!
3) I quickly found out myself, along with reading from other’s posts, that the dog bones with easily fall out of the front of the car if you even lightly bump into something. With that said, I would suggest you change to the CVA style shafts (TAM53597).
In conclusion, I like the car, but I still need a lot more time with it to figure out whether it’s for me or not. So far, it’s fun though. It’s similar to the Tamiya Mini’s, but you have more adjustments and AWD. I’m not too worried about the fact it’s made in China and parts aren’t readily available as the majority of the parts are from Tamiya and are easy to obtain.
I know there are several other options out on the market currently that offer the same benefits of this kit. I bought this kit strictly out of curiosity and I’m not saying its any better or worse then the others. The intention of this review is to help others who may be interested in this kit and who may struggle through the assembly.