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Old 09-06-2010, 02:24 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by M3Armand View Post
I don't get it. Why do you have to change the front pulley when all you are replacing is the rear?



Thanks for posting... seems like too much of a "pita"...pain in the...

I would just assume Hot Bodies / Associated will come out with their own which should be a direct fit.
You need to change the front becuase the tamiya pulleys are smaller (37t)

If you've got the patience to do it, then it's a really useful tuning tool, but if not, the the STD ball diff is very good with the kit and comes with ceramic balls as std

hth
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Old 09-28-2010, 07:30 PM   #47
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Just wanted to close this thread out and to provide my final opinions...

First, it really seems like they are "all the same". Choosing which of these three to get was really very difficult for me. I haven't bought one yet. Only because I added it to my early Christmas list for my wife to purchase. (Note: This will actually be an early gift I will get in the October/November timeframe).

So please note that these are MY opinions... Right or wrong, they are mine. I've formulated these opinions based on countless hours lost reading through and following the TCX, Photon and TC6 threads...

TC6 - my overall impression is that they do seem "decontented". I can't put my finger on it, but it feels like Associated will release another "Team" or "Worlds" edition a few months or so from now. While the TC6 seems "inexpensive" at $390, the addition of other parts down the road would bring that price much higher. I've found that the TC6 has a single bellcrank steering (vs. double on the TCX), does not come with one-ways, no anodized drive shafts (I know it's bling). A lot of parts seem to be a carry over from the TC5. That's good from a parts sense, but not necessarily good in that if I had a TC5, I don't think it would make much sense to switch if the changes are not as drastic. Parts-wise, my LHS would most likely stock all these parts.

Photon - seems like this car is very well thought out. In fact, the design thought process is very well documented in the Powerpoint presentation shown in their website. For $380, it comes with extra spare parts (2 front arms, 2 rear arms, 2 caster blocks, 2 steering blocks, 2 rear uprights). I believe amainhobbies used to say that they come with both the rubber chassis and the carpet chassis, but it doesn't say that anymore in the website. So it wasn't as good a deal as it used to be if that's the case. My LHS doesn't carry Photon, but with the extra parts already provided in the kit, it may not have been an issue. From a complexity standpoint, the Photon seems to have a higher parts count and visually looks to be more complicated.

TCX - great design that looks to be the cleanest for me. A lot of their design considerations are shown on their website. Obviously, the wins of the car is well documented also. I think HB is lucky to have a world class driver in Atshushi Hara. Otherwise, every top driver/contender seems to be running the Tamiya 416's and they're all usually in the top 5 positions. If price, parts and support in my area were not questionable for Tamiya, I would have considered the 416 (or the upcoming 417).

So which do I have on my Christmas list? I picked the TCX. It was a very close call with the Photon. All the smorgasboard of settings and high parts count for the Photon would probably drive me crazy. I'd probably like to keep things a bit simpler. With all these cars so close in design, as I mentioned before, you almost have to pick based on the color anodizing that you prefer. I really tried to not make that the case here. But I have to admit, from that standpoint, I liked the TCX the best. Like the Photon, it seemed "complete".

Here's my rundown. * = my preference

TCX --- Photon
1. Anodized drive shafts --- same as Photon
2. Symmetrical bulkheads --- Same as Photon
3. Arguably better shocks based on people’s opinions --- I have no info on Photon shocks
4. Available gear diff --- Available gear diff
5. Rear ball diff with ceramic balls --- *Photon has nice dust covers on the diff. I suppose I could always add the ceramic balls later. I can’t stand rebuilding diffs when they get dirty all the time.
6. Spur design is ok --- *Spur design is symmetric on both sides. I like this about the Photon.
7. Nothing fancy seen with the suspension design --- *Hub and suspension arm design is unique and visually looks like it would be stronger
8. *Dual anodized steering linkage. This looks a lot less prone to flexing --- Single mount steering linkage.
9. *Motor mount is further towards the center of the car --- I don’t like the Photon’s out of the three
10. *Center belt tensioner is included --- Possibly not needed for the Photon since both bulkheads have that concentric mount. But I don’t like the belt flopping around especially when accelerating. So I want a belt tensioner.
11. *Steel anodized front spool --- Looks like the Photon’s spool is recently updated but I have no additional info on it.
12. *One way diff or one way pulleys are available. I like the one way at the pulley and not as a diff. It’s really annoying that it’s not included for $420! --- Available for the Photon as a one way diff.
13. *Chassis top deck is one piece design --- Looks like it has a lot of parts to it. Add more “wings” for carpet racing.
14. *Battery mounts look closer to center of the car --- Battery mounts do look good and also has a place to put additional weights to help balance the car out. The Photon chassis has cutouts for NiMh’s which tell me that it’s weaker on that side of the chassis. I don’t plan to even go back to NiMh’s…
15. *Simpler and less parts --- There’s “pins and inserts”, balls and studs everywhere!
16. *Great support for parts, setups, instructions and aftermarket support --- Good support for parts and setups. I don’t know about aftermarket and the instructions seem to be not available in the internet.
17. *I like the purple anodizing better!!! --- I like the red anodizing second.

So there you have it. Again, these are my opinions and preferences only based on what I've painfully researched.

Thanks to all who have provided me their thoughts and input which allowed me to make a good decision for myself!
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Old 09-28-2010, 08:20 PM   #48
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14. *Battery mounts look closer to center of the car --- Battery mounts do look good and also has a place to put additional weights to help balance the car out. The Photon chassis has cutouts for NiMh’s which tell me that it’s weaker on that side of the chassis. I don’t plan to even go back to NiMh’s…
That 6cell/lipo capable chassis you see in most pictures of the photon is the original chassis. The new international kits include that one, but also includes the new lipo only chassis, which allows you to flip the belts.



The TCX is a nice looking car and I'm sure a fine choice. I just thought you should know that the lipo only chassis is also included in the new Photon kit. Also the US spec kits are international kits that TOP USA add the spare set of suspension bits to.
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Old 09-28-2010, 08:30 PM   #49
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....I just thought you should know that the lipo only chassis is also included in the new Photon kit. Also the US spec kits are international kits that TOP USA add the spare set of suspension bits to.
Thanks for letting me know this. This "confusion" is actually part of my problem with Photon. There's no "one source of truth" to the product. Instead, I would have to scour forums for information. For the HB, I go to the HB website and all the pics in there are accurate and, most important, up to date. Nothing more annoying than making a purchase and then finding out that the pics you saw in the internet don't represent the car you just purchased... There is no website (that I could search) that shows EXACTLY what I would get if I purchased a Photon. I can't even find the instructions for it. From that standpoint, the TCX was a safer purchase choice.
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Old 09-28-2010, 08:44 PM   #50
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I understand. Hotbodies/HPI is a much bigger company that employs people to keep their website up to date and put out good documentation. Many RC companies seem to be lacking in this area unfortunately.
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Old 09-28-2010, 09:09 PM   #51
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photon manual top japan web site: http://www.top-racing.jp/eng/download.asp
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Old 09-28-2010, 09:29 PM   #52
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photon manual top japan web site: http://www.top-racing.jp/eng/download.asp
That's the old manual. TOP Japan's site is not up to date. They update their kit more often than their website.
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Old 10-13-2010, 06:41 PM   #53
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TCX looked like it had a VERY good grip, when others would spin out
at the latest Victory documented on the HB webpage...Fairly convincing...

I
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Old 10-15-2010, 08:05 AM   #54
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Originally Posted by M3Armand View Post
Just wanted to close this thread out and to provide my final opinions...

First, it really seems like they are "all the same". Choosing which of these three to get was really very difficult for me. I haven't bought one yet. Only because I added it to my early Christmas list for my wife to purchase. (Note: This will actually be an early gift I will get in the October/November timeframe).

~

Thanks to all who have provided me their thoughts and input which allowed me to make a good decision for myself!
Nice - I agree with you on the complexity view point. I too don't want a lot of extra pieces to adjust and keep track of. Documentation is another area to concentrate on. I prefer the larger companies that have better (and current documentation) via their web site. I am not an Xray fan ($$), but their documentation is really good.

Overall - I am with you on HBX and Tamiya. Those damn Photons sure are winning races at my local track though...
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Old 10-15-2010, 08:49 AM   #55
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The first thing I always do before buying a new kit is check a few different places for parts availability. I know the HB car at least with the TC and the TCX parts are already hard to come by. The TC6 uses a lot of the same plastic parts from the TC5 for those will be easy to find. The Photon well good luck with that car......Just kidding I just had a bad experience with that car, it looks like they fixed them now.
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Old 10-15-2010, 03:26 PM   #56
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I was deciding between TCX and 417. In the end I bought the TCX because of the purple anodizing and cheaper price.

TCX also has symmetrical design (e.g. hubs, arms, bulkheads) so you can maintain minimum amount of spares to cover most of the car.
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Old 12-18-2010, 11:09 AM   #57
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I finally got mine!!!! Woo hooo!!! And I opened it before Christmas (and no, my wife doesn't know)...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAoPhXIMFPs
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Old 12-18-2010, 11:40 AM   #58
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The Mi4 any version is a very nice car
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Old 12-18-2010, 01:04 PM   #59
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Photon lipo only chassis down to $340 at rcmarket and would think amain and topusa would have them for the same price. thats way cheaper than anyone else and by the sounds best bang for your money
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Old 12-18-2010, 04:24 PM   #60
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Photon at A-main is $379.99
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