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My Juggernaut 2

This is a pretty big page - wait for the pics to load!

The Juggernaut as I got it, Dust and all

This is how I got the juggernaut. The previous owner had run it only a few times, and it had been sitting in a garage for years. He had the body painted by the shop, who did a not-so-fine job. For example: the chrome parts were painted without masking tape, and show a lot of mistakes. Too bad I can't even correct them without damaging the chrome parts.
Got the car, extra bits, ESC, extra receiver and manual. Too bad the box wasn't there...

Very dirty jugg!

The body, prior to stripping the paint.

Underneath: very new, but very dirty. I have taken the car apart screw by screw. Cleaned everything.

Inside. You can also see the receiver I got with the car.

Spider webs at the wheels. Brrrrrrr spooky!

The Juggy when it was cleaned

More pics will come, I just need to find them. This is the way the chassis looked after I had cleaned it, right after buying the car. Looked brandnew. The car is now fully ballraced.

Very big tyres. Underneath it is a DVD-box...

The Juggy when the (styrene) body was painted

Just some pics about the hard plastic, styrene body. I will not use this body for running. Stripped off all the paint that was on originally and repainted in metallic blue. Worked fairly well. Underneath the body is a clean jugg :)

The Juggernaut 2 after I added a lexan body and did some backyard bashing

Today, I took my juggernaut out for the first real drive, in my parents' backyard. The lexan body was fitted, everything was checked and doublechecked, it was time for my first battle against the elements...

The beast prior to the abuse

New lexan Ford F-350 body with long cab from Proline. Originally intended for T/E-maxx, but also fits on my juggy.

Quite happy with the way the body turned out, except for the windows: the smoke-paint went really really bad... Didn't take any pics of that. I am truly ashamed :(

My receiver all the way in the back of the car (as far from the engines as possible, to avoid interference) and the 'invisible' way to twist the antenna. Too bad the range of the car is only about 10 meters, so I will have to add an antenna pipe. Shame.

The front of the car, obviously. The body isn't as detailed as a Tamiya body by far. But for these purposes (smashing it up) it will do fine.

The Tamiya stickers don't fit the proline body as well as I hoped, but I tried to make them fit as nicely as I could. If you know they're not intended for this body, you might notice the difference.

Again, the receiver in the back, and my neat ESC setup.

Even cars like sunbathing from time to time...

This will be my playfield. Rocks put in between a bunch of trees. The rocks are quite big and heavy, and have been there for some years, so it's a beautiful spot for some rock crawling. Although the jug suspension is quite stiff, and it isn't a real rock-crawler, none of the pics below are posed: I drove onto the rocks, stopped, took a picture, and drove on. It wasn't too easy, but I managed to climb every rock there.

Ready to attack!

Some rocks are ordinary, but still climbable. The jugg has enormous torque, and could climb these, even without locked diffs.

With a wheel about 20cm in the air... Pictures don't do it justice...

Another fun hill in the garden: this used to be our (sort of) compost heap: the place we put all the cut grass and stuff. It's never been used in the garden, and just kept on growing. Now, it's a small hill... Juggernaut-playground...

Climbing the hill...

You can't see it in the picture, but there's about 75cm of height difference (almost straight down) between the jug and the tree in front of it.

Getting up the hill created when a tree fell down and the roots came up. This one was hard because of the loose sand, but I got up there in the end...

On top of the remains of the tree trunk on the same hill mentionned above...

When I finally got up there...

Not a swamp, just very heavy grass and debris. I drove in and out of there as if it was a parking lot...

On top of another hill, which you can see in either one of the first three movies, downloadable from this page...

The route I took through the woods. I was standing in front of it, thinking: 'It's impossible to go through that'. So I went in. And got out.

This is where I started. The branches open up just a bit too little to allow a giant RC truck to pass. But I used my raw power to push aside the branches.

Behind / over the centre bit of the obstacle.

Almost at the exit: some final brances to conquer. After all, it was a piece of cake :p

Making the Alu / steel links

I saw the steel links lots of people have on their clods / jugs, and Tamiya uses on the TXT-1. At first, I didn't like them, but then, I didn't like the plastic, standard links either. So I decided to try and make them myself.
I bought a meter of aluminum tube, 4mm diameter. I also bought one with 5mm diameter. Finally, I bought a 3mm thick, 1m long steel 'tige'. I cut pieces of 103mm off the aluminum tubes, and pieces of 120mm off the tige. Then, I just slided them together, using 3 drops of instant glue when inserting the threaded piece. Now, they are firmly glued together, and provide a nice (and CHEAP) alternative to the expensive kits you can buy on the net. I think I payed less than 10 euros for the 8 parts, which is considerably less than the 75 dollars they charge for custom made links.
All you have to do is be careful that the part you cut off has nice thread. After you saw it, the thread gets a bit bruised. Just use a nut to 'repair' the thread. After that, it's safe to screw the ball ends on...

Additionally, you can use messing (for gold look) or inox (chrome look) outer tubes to customize the links...

(Sorry about the bad pics, I had the wrong setting for the camera...)

First look at my home-made cantilever system

After seeing what a TXT-1 and other modified juggs/clod busters were capable of, I really needed a cantilever suspension system. Work started very slowly, and now I am in one of the final stages of creating the system. Below are some pics I took today, illustrating what it will look like. Bear in mind that these are just temporary parts, when all the sizes and dimensions add up, I'll make the final version. Stay Tuned!

This is how the system works: the fact that you have cantilevers, makes it possible to have huge travel on your shocks, since they only have to move 1/2 or so of the actual travel. This means that the shocks become a bit less stiff, which is no problem because they are plenty stiff to begin with. I 'chose' Carson shocks, because Tamiya shocks are not affordable in Belgium. If the system works, I ill probably replace them with Tamiya shocks I order in HongKong. Anyway, also because of the rod connecting the axle with the cantilever, there is no wide part that gets in the way when the shock is used. This also alows for more free space and more travel.

Nevermind the mess :) . Here you have a nice overview of the cantilevered truck. I reinforced the front of the chassis with an alu rod, and reinforced the bit between front and rear shocks with a bit of FRP. This, ofcourse, needs to be elaborated and improved. My ESC was in the way of the other reinforcement, so that isn't installed yet. In this pic, the truck's ride height is too high: it will be lowered by a couple of centimeters.

I added some padding to the battery holder. Now it's nice and snug in there :) .

This is the way I attached my linkage rods. They are put in a crosslike-fashion to prevent the chassis from shifting. Works quite well.

Note the cantilever system, but also the cross-setup of my linkage rods. I just drilled through the holes that were originally in the attachment-blocks, and equipped them with dual ball ends. 4mm on the inside, 6 mm on the outside.

Again, a cantilever shot. Temporarily attached with bronze ball bearings to make it fit well. In this pic, the shock is almost fully pressed.

Again a fully pressed shock. Note how high the tyres reach. Sweet.

My truck doing the Limbo! (How low can you go? How low can you go? How low can you go?)

The linkage rod cross setup. The green things are condoms (well, not really, they're just balloons...) to keep the axles greased. Don't seem to good though. Will replace them by better ones... When I find them.

One spot was hard to move the ball end. So I moved it in a different way: connected it to the spot the servo saver mount is screwed on to the axles. Ockham would have been proud ;) .

How I locked my diffs

After 2 rock climbing sessions, the inevitability of locking my diffs became clear. But how? This is how I did it:

I opened and degreased my diffs. Then I Reassembled the centre bit, and glued it together using just a drop of instant-glue. When that was dry (almost instantly ;) ) I filled the sides with two component epoxy, the stuff they use for repairing real car bumpers etc.
The thing with that type of epoxy is that it's dry in 15-30 minutes. If you take a sharp knife, you can start cutting away the 'spilled' and not-needed bits. This is what it looked like after I did that.

And just another assembled-pic. Looks nice. Performs well too. I hope it holds.

I am hoping that, if I ever need to remove the lock, it will be possible. I will try to put the bit in acetone or something like that, and hopefully the epoxy will loosen, and the gears will be fine. If not, I'll have to buy new ones :p .
One thing I noticed a lot when first testing the car with locked diffs, is that the turning circle is much larger. That's got to be the largest argument against locking them. Because now the car crawls over everything in its path.

Small update:

I removed the difflock. It didn't go without effort, but I did get them free again. My biggest problem was the drop of superglue I used to keep the gears in place, before applying the putty. I eventually got all glue off using an open flame ;) Now I 'lock' (more like: 'slow down' my diffs by using Protech difflube, with a viscosity of 100.000 (cfr. 1 for H2O...). It's a small improvement, but I guess the truck has way too much torque to be bothered by heavy diff-lube...

Beach Bashing!

I initially bought the jug because I figured it would be a great car to be driven on the beach. This turned out to be 100% correct. At first, I only went into the dunes to do some climbing, but then I wanted to take it a bit further.
The pictures below are not in chronological order, so the car setup may differ from picture to picture...


First set of pictures: my new steering setup. I figured I'd need extra steering power when beach bashing, so I put in an extra servo. This is my temporary setup, I'm planning on having the plates made in carbon fibre. Right now they're made of etching plates...

The trick to make the four-wheel steering work, is to have both servo-savers point the same way. With my car, they're both pointing to the back of the car.

I later added a bumper to the front servo. It was a bit too vulnerable with the servo, servo saver, and steering rods sticking out like that... It's just an aluminum plate which is attached to the servo with double sided tape. If something were to break, it would be the plate the servo is attached to...


The second set of pics shows my new suspension setup. This actually was the best suspension setup I tried for the jug - so far. I kept the leaf springs as springs, and added the dampers to remove the car's bounciness. Worked fine. I put the dampers in a balloon, to keep the sand out. As it later turned out, these would be the only parts of the car not damaged by the seawater. (Actually, the tyres and body weren't damaged either.... )


Third set of pics: the lights! I bought 4 superbright white LEDs and 2 superbright red ones. The white ones went in the front, the red ones in the rear (obviously). I use a 9V battery for power. The 6 LEDs run about an hour on one charge... Which is plenty ;)
I needed to adjust the beams so they would look 'real' when driving. I just tweaked them using stickers on my wall. Turned out quite allright.

Lights in the rear:

Lights in the front:


Fourth set of pics: Dirty! This is after some shallow-water running and a bit of dune climbing. The day would end in a giant waterfest. Check out the movie for that!
I waterproofed everything vulnerable. The receiver was wrapped in a balloon, as was the battery for the lights. The ESC was placed inside a waterproofed box, with the cooling just sticking out. Nothing melted, nothing got loose. This box has proven itself.

Sand remains on the cab...

Sand everywhere...

A close up of the battery for the lights... Worked fantastically well ;)


Last set of pics: The damage... And there was quite a lot of it. I had to take the car apart down to the last little screw. I cleaned everything, and will have to replace several bits as well... At least I had fun ;)
I was amazed of how well the wheel-system of the clod buster (which the jug adopted) worked in sand and water. Almost nothing got into the 'dirt-free chamber' of the uprights, and those bearings were very clean after the waterfest...
Some rusted screw heads. These were bad, but generally the way every screw below 10 cms of ground clearance looked...

Rusted bearings. The one on the right still turns a bit. The one on the left... Does nothing. I hope I can still clean these... This only happened with 'exteriour' bearings, the ones inside gearboxes and such are still in pristine condition...

Residu of the foamy stuff on the servo mounting plate... Turns green, sticky, and stinky...

Lessons learned:

  • The foamy stuff on the beach may not be harmful, but it stinks and sticks. Stay out of it, kids! (The stuff is actually a by-product made by algea when they multiply. Since they multiply most in the light, this stuff appears on the beach when the second tide comes in, after it had had a chance to come together on the sea surface... )
  • Seawater may be fun to drive through, it will corrode everything that's even remotely metal - and everything will rust.
  • In short: when driving on the beach, stay out of anything that looks wet.
  • The Juggernaut - and probably all tamiya monster trucks - is great fun at the beach.
  • Toys they're not...

The Final Restoration

I have been working on this car for years now, and have come up with all sorts of changes and / or improvements. The past year, it has been sitting in a box in bits, and the time has come to restore it once again. After the Beach Bashing, everything needed to be cleaned, and loads of parts were terminally damaged.

First, I found the parts I needed at a webshop. Then, I ordered a cool looking full screwset at

The way I solved the problem of where to attach the shocks: bumper is attached to the dampermount. This way the leaf springs can be eliminated and everything seems to be somewhat 'original'. I will need to find decent oil shocks, but I believe Team Associated has them...

The front end. I need to finish this, but I'm waiting for delivery of some parts.

I used the TXT-1 aluminium links and bought a new gearbox tree, which includes the top lids with attachment spots for these links.

The Jugg links have a 3mm thread, whereas the TXT links use 4mm rods. I drilled out the original ball ends, and screwed in the rods. Works fine - and they're the perfect length!




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