Calling this Element Gatekeeper a "build" is like calling your new car a "build" because you've put a cell-phone charger in it...

NorthernCrawlerado

Premium Member!
Premium Member
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
Frederick, CO
Arrma RC's
  1. Typhon 3s
IMG-0674.jpg

I bought an Element Gatekeeper in the Black Friday sales after studying the topic for perhaps two weeks. I was such a mega-noob idiot that I kept calling it an "Element Gateway," for some unknown reason.

Perhaps senility is setting in?

Anyway, I messed up the left front tire and had to take it off and remount it... Probably not too big of an effort, but I managed to strip out a screw on the beadlock somehow.

I notice the car is truly gifted...

At flipping on its roof.

A bunch of retailers offer heavyweight metal suspension and wheel parts, which I will be buying soon.

Last night I installed a Hobbywing Fusion Pro 2300 kv motor in it. I almost did it all correctly, except for inserting the servo and ESC plugs in backward. That somehow did not result in catastrophe, because Hobbywing sees guys like me coming from 200 miles away, and makes the whole system "idiot proof." I took it into the cold night air last night and was amazed at the low-speed control, the insane punch, the blazing top speed and the quietness of the rig.

IMG-0675.jpg
 

real_name_hidden

Bash/Break/Fix/REPEAT 🤣
Premium Member
ArrmaForum Fan
Hospitality Award
Build Thread Contributor
Messages
3,621
Reaction score
6,860
Location
Missouri/Illinois
Arrma RC's
  1. Limitless
  2. Kraton 6s
View attachment 261723
I bought an Element Gatekeeper in the Black Friday sales after studying the topic for perhaps two weeks. I was such a mega-noob idiot that I kept calling it an "Element Gateway," for some unknown reason.

Perhaps senility is setting in?

Anyway, I messed up the left front tire and had to take it off and remount it... Probably not too big of an effort, but I managed to strip out a screw on the beadlock somehow.

I notice the car is truly gifted...

At flipping on its roof.

A bunch of retailers offer heavyweight metal suspension and wheel parts, which I will be buying soon.

Last night I installed a Hobbywing Fusion Pro 2300 kv motor in it. I almost did it all correctly, except for inserting the servo and ESC plugs in backward. That somehow did not result in catastrophe, because Hobbywing sees guys like me coming from 200 miles away, and makes the whole system "idiot proof." I took it into the cold night air last night and was amazed at the low-speed control, the insane punch, the blazing top speed and the quietness of the rig.

View attachment 261722
I’m not going to be much of any help. Other than the limited amount of time I had a crawler myself using a Axial SCX10 II with a hobby wing esc. It always wanted to roll over and play dead… and I got bored of it…but @grihn might possibly help you out with setting it up correctly? I don’t know any other members here who rock crawl. Even try the rctalk forum? Might help? Regardless nice build!
 

NorthernCrawlerado

Premium Member!
Premium Member
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
Frederick, CO
Arrma RC's
  1. Typhon 3s
Thanks for your guidance! I went to RCCrawler Forum and made a user name.

They won't authorize me to post... it's been 3 weeks. You apparently have to know somebody over there, it's some sort of clique and I am apparently "not good enough to communicate with."

Whatever. The owners can afford to be unfriendly, because reasons.
 

Jon NC RC

Keep it fun......SEND IT
Lifetime Premium!
Premium Member
Build Thread Contributor
Messages
1,613
Reaction score
2,511
Location
In the stix…NC Mtns
Arrma RC's
  1. Kraton 8S
  2. Kraton EXB
  3. Mojave
  4. Senton 3s
Yeah, I dunno...... I have one crawler, and, for a break from bashing, its my go to rig. Sometimes there is an art to going as slow as you can instead of as fast as you can.....

It also, with mods, cost pretty much as much as my Kraton 8S EXB......

It has been a while since I have tried to be involved with a crawler forum.....many were informative, some were rude, another never answered my questions.....one seemed to cater to the $5000 and up super pro crawler crowd..... none made me feel very welcome

There was one that seemed to answer my questions by my due diligence at looking thru their old posts. I also found info on the manufacturer website forum, as it is a very popular and capable crawler.

I have examined several crawler forums.....I wish I could recommend one.....hopefully you can find one that works for you

I couldn't....but I'm sure I haven't seen them all
 

NorthernCrawlerado

Premium Member!
Premium Member
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
Frederick, CO
Arrma RC's
  1. Typhon 3s
OK: Ordered Injora beadlocks with brass ring inserts to boof up the weight down low. Damn thing is top-heavier than a 1990s porn star. Also have brass wheel weights behind the wheels on the way, and some 12mm x 15mm extenders to increase the track, as that seems to reduce flip tendency.
 

Jon NC RC

Keep it fun......SEND IT
Lifetime Premium!
Premium Member
Build Thread Contributor
Messages
1,613
Reaction score
2,511
Location
In the stix…NC Mtns
Arrma RC's
  1. Kraton 8S
  2. Kraton EXB
  3. Mojave
  4. Senton 3s
On my full size 1/10 Defender, I have brass hubs all the way around, and a brass front bracket that you mount the steering servo to. Plus an aftermarket metal fender for the back end. It made a huge difference.

But it also made my stock servo inadequate, as the extra weight was just too much for it to push. Easily solved with a better servo.

Another thing that crawlheads do is try to remove ANY weight from the upper aspect of the rig, no matter how negligible it may seem. ( People have removed the figures/ guns from the Fireteam to help with high center of gravity)

Just a thought....

PS... It will blow your mind when you look into all the different accessories you can get for crawlers. I saw several defenders that had all kinds of tools and hardware and all kinds of things attached to the body. Looks cool, some of it looks unbelievably realistic. But a lot of that stuff only makes the top heavy part worse.....
 

SrC

RC is a lifestyle choice
Lifetime Premium!
Premium Member
Excellence Award
Hospitality Award
Build Thread Contributor
Messages
17,792
Reaction score
22,686
Location
Queens, NYC
Arrma RC's
  1. Fireteam
  2. Infraction
  3. Limitless
  4. Kraton 6s
  5. Mojave
  6. Notorious
  7. Outcast 6s
  8. Typhon TLR
Yeah careful with adding weight, you will need a very strong servo at best. The RTR stockers will fry. Been there. I have 3 Crawlers. Axial Trail Honcho, Deadbolt, and Traxassss Sport. Trx Gifted to me by a friend that tried it and didn't like it. He kept breaking it. Just gave up and said to keep it. I was always fixing it for him. Not aTrx fan at all myself. But have to admit, the TRX-4 is a decent platform. My Axial's rule however, by comparison. I didn't like Crawlers at first. I thought it was a waste of money after getting the Trail Honcho. But then as I watched more G6 Crawling events I figured it out. You can easily drop $2k into a Crawler. Be careful. Don't buy parts being enticed only by all the bling. It will run like crap, flip over easily on the rocks and trails etc., if you don't do your research. Tires make all the difference. Don't cut corners with cheap ones. Invest in Alloy Wheels, that are true beadlocks. Glued tires suck. Proper foams even changes the traction. How you dial it in. Firmer foams at the rear is best. Beadlock alloy wheels allow you to swap out t different foams at will. Glued on tires you cannot. There is so much to learn with Crawling. It is more than just driving slowly and slamming it with scale $BLING$.. Top heavy rigs are horrible. Light bodies rule. Placing weight on the axels and wheels help. Keep all the added weight below the chassis frame. Brass weighted Differential covers at the front is great. Not at the rear. Pitbull Rock Beast tires are among the best. Sticky rubber grips all. And I like walking trails for over an hour with just one lipo pack. And Brushed motors RULE for Crawling. How I fly. I like Holmes Hobbies Brushed motors. Many go the BLX route. Not necessary IMHO. My Crawlers drive/Hike through snowstorms, rain , blizzards, streams and Mud. I do it all , with Brushed motors. I tried BLX . Did not like it. The control was not the best. A Brushed setup running 3s packs lasts for miles. Brushed ESC's are less costly. And If you go BLX, you will NEED a Sensored setup for crawlers.. Very expensive, considering the little gained performance.
 
Last edited:

NorthernCrawlerado

Premium Member!
Premium Member
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
Frederick, CO
Arrma RC's
  1. Typhon 3s
Driving the new Gatekeeper with the HobbyWing Fusion Pro is… amazing.

Ran through “The Amphitheater” at Centennial Park in Frederick; successfully resulted in all-around excellence.

Then I smashed it into juuuust the right rock….
A7323AD7-2BB9-4F80-AB2B-A41004DB0586.jpeg
 
Last edited:

SrC

RC is a lifestyle choice
Lifetime Premium!
Premium Member
Excellence Award
Hospitality Award
Build Thread Contributor
Messages
17,792
Reaction score
22,686
Location
Queens, NYC
Arrma RC's
  1. Fireteam
  2. Infraction
  3. Limitless
  4. Kraton 6s
  5. Mojave
  6. Notorious
  7. Outcast 6s
  8. Typhon TLR
Looks like you were bashing it??? Was it very cold out? The plastic ends and all get very brittle.
I keep my rigs geared no faster than a Jogs pace. Just me. Best for hiking trails etc. How do you run your Element?
I looked into that ESC and its manual. Nice setup there.
Best to run it in "Normal mode" Forward/Rev Only without Brake at the trigger... Without speed function. How is your Fusion set up? I would Dial in the Drag brake for best results. Simulates a true Brushed setup. Seems most Crawler BLX ESC's are desigend to simulate a Brushed setup. Crawlers were originally designed with Brushed motors in mind due to the best braking effect and torque modulation. BLX setups are more efficent no doubt. Again Nice ESC there.
Enjoy.
:cool:
 

Jon NC RC

Keep it fun......SEND IT
Lifetime Premium!
Premium Member
Build Thread Contributor
Messages
1,613
Reaction score
2,511
Location
In the stix…NC Mtns
Arrma RC's
  1. Kraton 8S
  2. Kraton EXB
  3. Mojave
  4. Senton 3s
Yeah careful with adding weight, you will need a very strong servo at best. The RTR stockers will fry. Been there. I have 3 Crawlers. Axial Trail Honcho, Deadbolt, and Traxassss Sport. Trx Gifted to me by a friend that tried it and didn't like it. He kept breaking it. Just gave up and said to keep it. I was always fixing it for him. Not aTrx fan at all myself. But have to admit, the TRX-4 is a decent platform. My Axial's rule however, by comparison. I didn't like Crawlers at first. I thought it was a waste of money after getting the Trail Honcho. But then as I watched more G6 Crawling events I figured it out. You can easily drop $2k into a Crawler. Be careful. Don't buy parts being enticed only by all the bling. It will run like crap, flip over easily on the rocks and trails etc., if you don't do your research. Tires make all the difference. Don't cut corners with cheap ones. Invest in Alloy Wheels, that are true beadlocks. Glued tires suck. Proper foams even changes the traction. How you dial it in. Firmer foams at the rear is best. Beadlock alloy wheels allow you to swap out t different foams at will. Glued on tires you cannot. There is so much to learn with Crawling. It is more than just driving slowly and slamming it with scale $BLING$.. Top heavy rigs are horrible. Light bodies rule. Placing weight on the axels and wheels help. Keep all the added weight below the chassis frame. Brass weighted Differential covers at the front is great. Not at the rear. Pitbull Rock Beast tires are among the best. Sticky rubber grips all. And I like walking trails for over an hour with just one lipo pack. And Brushed motors RULE for Crawling. How I fly. I like Holmes Hobbies Brushed motors. Many go the BLX route. Not necessary IMHO. My Crawlers drive/Hike through snowstorms, rain , blizzards, streams and Mud. I do it all , with Brushed motors. I tried BLX . Did not like it. The control was not the best. A Brushed setup running 3s packs lasts for miles. Brushed ESC's are less costly. And If you go BLX, you will NEED a Sensored setup for crawlers.. Very expensive, considering the little gained performance.
Yup yup.... Sage advice. Agree with all... Has been my observance with my experience, other than I only have my TRX 4. Their stock tires are just above average, their stock servo is barely adequate without any added. Weight.

Defender Is definitely top heavy stock. I found the sweet spot for my rig with the weight I added.....

Brushed motors.... ABSOLUTELY

Holmes Hobbies.... GREAT RESOURCE..... GREAT products and customer service, and priced right! He started by building crawlers from scratch back in the day..... He knows his stuff!

When I was considering which rig to buy, my favorite looking rig had minimal part support...


So it came down to TRX vs Axial.... Good to have choices!
And yes, it's GREAT how long my 3s battery lasts!!
 

NorthernCrawlerado

Premium Member!
Premium Member
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
Frederick, CO
Arrma RC's
  1. Typhon 3s
Had ordered some Injora wheels for this rig... they're on sampan from CN and will be here by the time the next US President takes office.

In the mean time, I am putting on the wheel weights I ordered, along with the 15mm extenders. I documented the work for your viewing pleasure.

First, tools were gathered. I had a couple of adult beverages, and saw the mail came in with my gear. I puzzled over how I would install the weights as the Method scale beadlocks which came with the kit were attached to the hubs with 1.5mm stainless screws... why such a small (and weak) fastener? Dumb, Element, DUMB.

It looked like some newer cap head machine screws, which were thicker, had a more gentle thread, and were longer, were included in the kit... so I figured I'd use those. This meant that I'd have to do some precision drilling... and without metric bits, I'd have to precisely measure everything and use whichever standard bits came closest.

IMG_0692.JPEG

IMG_0693.JPEG

IMG_0694.JPEG
IMG_0695.JPEG
IMG_0696.JPEG
IMG_0698.JPEG

IMG_0699.JPEG
IMG_0700.JPEG
IMG_0701.JPEG
 
Last edited:

NorthernCrawlerado

Premium Member!
Premium Member
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
Frederick, CO
Arrma RC's
  1. Typhon 3s
Quick run report: got 1.5 sections of "The Amphitheater" done, then observed the right front wheel not turning. It came loose, in spite of what I thought was "tight enough."

Promptly lost the drive pin out of the axle; went home and pulled all the wheels, refitting the missing pin, then locktited the hubs and laid on some far more aggressive torque to all of them.

All the hubs were all loose and ready to depart the chassis - I'll be learning basics as my experience with wheeled vehicles increases. It's a little humbling to have to "start over" at this point.
 

NorthernCrawlerado

Premium Member!
Premium Member
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
Frederick, CO
Arrma RC's
  1. Typhon 3s
Ok, so maybe I'm actually doing a "build" now? I mean, in as much as some dumbass middle-aged diabetic with a nice tool set can "build" anything?
 

RadioHacktive

Well-Known Member
Messages
681
Reaction score
1,126
Location
Central PA
If there's one thing I know about crawlers, it's that no two are exactly alike. Sure, you can use some of the same components that someone else does, but likely you're going to have a different body that you took from some toy grade or model vehicle and modified it the way you like. Maybe you're using different wheel weights (like the brass ones you've got on already). Maybe you're using a different skid plate and suspension links. Point is, you can call this a "build thread" and it doesn't have to be in the traditional forum sense. Besides, one of the joys of being on this forum is watching people put new parts on r/c vehicles. Sometimes it's a super popular rig and other times it's unique. I'm gonna put your "Gatekeeper" in the unique category. (y)
 

Doom!

Team Dust Devil
Lifetime Premium!
Premium Member
Excellence Award
Hospitality Award
Build Thread Contributor
Messages
7,999
Reaction score
13,884
Location
Central California
Arrma RC's
  1. Mojave
  2. Typhon 6s
I've had great luck with Injora parts on my crawlers, just make sure you line those beadlocks up evenly. If you feel any resistance on those little screws, back them off a bit, they can strip if your not careful.
 

NorthernCrawlerado

Premium Member!
Premium Member
Messages
100
Reaction score
176
Location
Frederick, CO
Arrma RC's
  1. Typhon 3s
Beadlock and brass wheel weight installation.

Image 1: order your workspace (Flightline TA-152H landing gear repairs completed)
20221230_111147.jpg

Image 2: Gatekeeper out.
20221230_111910.jpg

Image 3: wheels out, tire off. Note brass insert as opposed to aluminum. Weighs more - keep that weight LOW!
20221230_114321.jpg

Image 4; one done... and my Muchmore driver ran out of steam.
20221230_120800.jpg

Image 5: on the truck.
20221230_120907.jpg

Image 6: both sides done

20221230_163135.jpg
 
Last edited:
Top