Recommended Arrma Kraton Upgrades

bicketybam

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I just got back into the RC scene and I am only a few months into the Arrmas, So take what I say with a grain of salt, but I can at least tell you what I have found from my experience.

As Jerry said, a new servo is a must. I feel that this is true for almost every RTR vehicle. I don't think I have ever bought an RTR and not changed the servo. I went with the Savox SA-1256TG in my Kraton (not waterproof) and a Savox SW-1210SG in my Typhon (waterproof better performace).

When it comes to the mount, if you go with a high torque servo you will definitely notice the flex on the mount (especially if you set your endpoints to the max). For that reason alone I would say do the mount. Sometimes I bash in smaller areas and I need my truck to turn. The mount combined with the high torque servo really helps a lot.

For me, another must was a front bumper because in my opinion the Kraton (and the Typhon) didn't comer with one, lol. When I first got my Kraton I kept looking around in the box to see where the bumper was. I thought you had to attach it. What they give you for a front bumper is useless. The Kraton is a monster truck that goes fast. You are going to hit things. You need a better bumper.

As far as the wing mount goes, I have a V3 but never really tested the toughness of the wing mount. I had a few bad landings on the stock mount but that was before I found the BMX park. I went with the RPM wing mount for $16.00. Is it a must? Probably not. You could just wait until if/when the stock breaks and replace it with an RPM.

Shims for the diffs. All I can say is I ran the truck for 4 weeks on 6S with the stock, unshimmed diffs. During that time I had some nasty crashes, including one that sheared the screw off that holds one of the front shocks. I also bent the rear shock tower a bit. In any event, my diffs were fine. I ended up shimming them because I like to tinker and the shims are dirt cheap, but I am not completely sold I HAD to do it. And on top of that, I couldn't even fit the recommended number of shims in without the differential being very hard to turn. I could feel the gears grinding against each other. But this is the bottom line: I always replace the bearings on RTR's (I think Arrma's stock bearing are pretty shitty.) So if you are going to replace the bearing you are going to have to open the diffs. And you are going to have to replace the diff lube when you do that. So 1) change the lube weight because the stock weight of 10k/10k/10k is way to light, 2) Dry fit some shims and see how it feels and 3) replace those bearings. So while I don't think shimming is an absolute must with the V3 diffs, you are right there anyway so see if it needs it.

I ended up doing a lot more upgrades but none of which were musts. They were just improvements. I went with HR axle carriers and RPM A-arms. Not a must but I haven't had a pillow ball loosen or the pillow ball cap loosen since I did it (and they look cool). I did HR chassis braces. I did the HR motor mount and diff brace. I can remove the motor without removing the whole assembly. That's a nice convenience, not a necessity. I went with Voltage Hobbies shock towers. I had bent my stock rear slightly and I figured why not. But I certainly didn't have to and the crash that bent the stock one was pretty horrific. I have a few more more upgrades but you get the point.

The last thing I will address are the stock tires. I didn't like them and went with Pro-Line Trenchers. While not a must, this is a major performance upgrade for the type of bashing I do. If you are a parking lot king, then Trenchers aren't for you. But I think no matter what kind of driving you do, a tire change is a worthy investment.

Oh,one last, last thing. I don't care for the stock radios. Not a must, but it's something else to consider. You've invested $500 for the truck plus more money in upgrades. Why drive around on a $40 radio. Just my opinion. Peace!
 

Jerry-rigged

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Shims for the diffs. All I can say is I ran the truck for 4 weeks on 6S with the stock, unshimmed diffs. During that time I had some nasty crashes, including one that sheared the screw off that holds one of the front shocks. I also bent the rear shock tower a bit. In any event, my diffs were fine. I ended up shimming them because I like to tinker and the shims are dirt cheap, but I am not completely sold I HAD to do it. And on top of that, I couldn't even fit the recommended number of shims in without the differential being very hard to turn. I could feel the gears grinding against each other. But this is the bottom line: I always replace the bearings on RTR's (I think Arrma's stock bearing are pretty shitty.) So if you are going to replace the bearing you are going to have to open the diffs. And you are going to have to replace the diff lube when you do that. So 1) change the lube weight because the stock weight of 10k/10k/10k is way to light, 2) Dry fit some shims and see how it feels and 3) replace those bearings. So while I don't think shimming is an absolute must with the V3 diffs, you are right there anyway so see if it needs it.
My last diff swap - I bought a full V3 diff from Ebay. The V3 diffs are much tighter than the older diffs - and this is good. BUT - I still put "shim the diffs" on my must do, - not because I think you need to add shims, but just because this is something you should check. Every diff is different. With the V1/V2, most of the diffs need more shims, with the V3 most of the diffs don't need more shims - but every diff should be checked...

My .02
 

bicketybam

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My last diff swap - I bought a full V3 diff from Ebay. The V3 diffs are much tighter than the older diffs - and this is good. BUT - I still put "shim the diffs" on my must do, - not because I think you need to add shims, but just because this is something you should check. Every diff is different. With the V1/V2, most of the diffs need more shims, with the V3 most of the diffs don't need more shims - but every diff should be checked...

My .02
Excellent point and well taken. There really isn't any excuse to not check them since you are going to have them apart anyway :)
 

bluedeval03

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I am not sure the wing mount is still a "must do" upgrade, the V2 wing mount is pretty good. Yes, it will break if you land hard on the wing a lot, but it is pretty tough. If you upgrade to the aluminum Hot Racing wing mount, and then land hard on that, I expect you would just break the diff housing instead...

Servo Mount - I jumped on this bandwagon early, but as time goes on, I feel this is one of those making a mountain out of a mole hill exercises. Does the mount flex? Yes. Does it create a REAL issue for us bashers? Maybe / Probably not. I think the weak servo is a bigger problem - and some of that blame gets put on the servo mount. So people get an aluminum mount, and with less flex, boom goes the stock servo... LOL If you run a strong servo from Day 1, I bet 98% of folks would not notice the bit of flex that is there... Plus, with the V3, it is better (less flexi) Now, if you are building a Track car, and are hoping to dominate the local Club Racing Scene - then a new servo mount would be on my shopping list, but only after a Tekno or TLR kit.

My Must Do list -
Servo
Shim the diffs

And not Must do, but a really good idea -
Bearings (have them on hand for as needed swaps, no need to do a full swap right away)
Chassis braces
Bumpers (especially for beginners)
Tires (unless your car came with backflips)
Luckily, the diffs are really pretty tight. I have a tiny smidge of slop in the rear, but none in the front or center diffs. I am probably just going to buy some new diff internals and go ahead and build all three. Then when one blows all I have to do is swap and go with no down time. Then I will always have spare internals to boot. I’m digging the TBR bumpers and will be ordered this week as well as voltage racing servo mount and savox servo 1210sg to finish out the steering.
How is the bearing quality that Hot Racing uses on their steering bellcranks?
 

bluedeval03

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yeah I am not a fan of the radio at all. I have been looking at the Futaba, Spectrum, and KoProPo offerings. but that's a ways off so plenty of time to research those. I need a 4 channel for one of my rc's, so think I will just go ahead and make that a requirement
 

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yeah I am not a fan of the radio at all. I have been looking at the Futaba, Spectrum, and KoProPo offerings. but that's a ways off so plenty of time to research those. I need a 4 channel for one of my rc's, so think I will just go ahead and make that a requirement
I actually like the radio, it feels nice in the hands, isn't bulky or anything. Much better than the Spektrum DX2E that came with my Ruckus. It not only looks hideous but its huge, bulky and just feels cheap. My DX5C feels really nice though. I haven't had a chance to use it yet. Don't know what everything does on this radio, it has so many buttons and options I feel kind of like a monkey trying to do a math problem.
 

bicketybam

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I actually like the radio, it feels nice in the hands, isn't bulky or anything. Much better than the Spektrum DX2E that came with my Ruckus. It not only looks hideous but its huge, bulky and just feels cheap. My DX5C feels really nice though. I haven't had a chance to use it yet. Don't know what everything does on this radio, it has so many buttons and options I feel kind of like a monkey trying to do a math problem.
I don’t like the turn dials. I like a display that shows where I am with trim. Also, the dual rate isn’t really a dual rate. Dual rate shouldn’t affect your endpoints and the stock radio does. What it should do is make it less (or more) sensitive around center and then turn fully when your want to turn fully. With the Spektrum you can set it so you can make a high speed pass down a road with the steering very numb around center so you don’t over correct, but you have the normal turning radius when you want to make a u-turn and come back.

I have 3 of the stock radio/receivers sitting around collecting dust. The only one I use is for my Mega Senton so my nephews can use it while I run my other RC’s.
 

Jerry-rigged

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I don’t like the turn dials. I like a display that shows where I am with trim. Also, the dual rate isn’t really a dual rate. Dual rate shouldn’t affect your endpoints and the stock radio does. What it should do is make it less (or more) sensitive around center and then turn fully when your want to turn fully. With the Spektrum you can set it so you can make a high speed pass down a road with the steering very numb around center so you don’t over correct, but you have the normal turning radius when you want to make a u-turn and come back.

I have 3 of the stock radio/receivers sitting around collecting dust. The only one I use is for my Mega Senton so my nephews can use it while I run my other RC’s.
What you are describing here is Expo rates, not Duel rates. DR on every radio I have ever owned reduces both endpoints. Expo lets you set a non-liner response like you describe.
 

bicketybam

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What you are describing here is Expo rates, not Duel rates. DR on every radio I have ever owned reduces both endpoints. Expo lets you set a non-liner response like you describe.
My bad. In any event, the stock radio doesn't have expo and that's a must for me .
 

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Yes, dual rate lessens end points but spreads it out over the entire control range thus making it less sensitive.
 
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ok so im new here and have a question about the shims and diffs. how many packages of shims do u need to complete all 3 diffs ? And I believe i read someone say they were Mugen shims ??
 

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Just as a heads up the diff shimming is more relevant to the V1 and V2 diffs many find that adding shims to the V3 diffs makes them too tight. Assemble them dry first to ensure that they are good before adding fluid. It makes a big mess if you fill it up then find out its too tight =(
 

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And as far as a single 6s battery with long run times ?? First electric car I've always ran HPI nitros lol
Depends on the capacity of the battery and how you run it. Running around the homemade rc track here I could get about 10-15 minutes out of a 4000mah 60c 6s battery. When running the dual 5200mah 3s batteries I was up around 20-25 minutes.
With winter upon most of us in the Northern hemisphere the cold temperatures also have an impact on your run times, the colder it is outside the less time your batteries will last.
 

bicketybam

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Just as a heads up the diff shimming is more relevant to the V1 and V2 diffs many find that adding shims to the V3 diffs makes them too tight. Assemble them dry first to ensure that they are good before adding fluid. It makes a big mess if you fill it up then find out its too tight =(
My Notorious diffs were too tight with both sun gears shimmed. What I failed to do was check the outside play and add a shim to the ring gear side in the front and rear diffs. I had to replace both ring gears. The front got destroyed. The rear chipped a few teeth.
 

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My Notorious diffs were too tight with both sun gears shimmed. What I failed to do was check the outside play and add a shim to the ring gear side in the front and rear diffs. I had to replace both ring gears. The front got destroyed. The rear chipped a few teeth.
I couldn't add any internal shims to mine, anything more than what it already had in it and it was too tight. I think I had to add 2 in the rear and 1 in the front of mine, and 1 shim between the pinion gear and bearing on the rear too. It's been so long since I've messed with my front or rear diff that I cannot remember what the shim sizes are anymore lol.
 

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