Retiring the Tundra
It's been 4 years since I got into crawling by building an Axial SCX10. I ordered just the individual parts I wanted and then topped it off with a Tamiya Toyota Tundra body. When searching for ideas on how to paint it I came across a red Tundra that had been themed as an Alaska Mountain Rescue vehicle. It was nice looking but it was missing something in my opinion. It just didn't have an Alaskan feel to it for me. I really liked the idea however and I started playing with different colors to see if it was the red color that was bothering me. I happened upon a shade of teal green that worked really well for me so I decided to go with that. I researched the official logos and recreated them in Adobe Illustrator and then had them printed at a local vinyl shop. I made some further customizations to the idea, for example I put the Tamiya Tundra roof rack rails in the bed to hold the Tamiya snowboards and the vehicle idenfication number on the front fenders is my son's birthday. All in all I am quite happy with the body and it has a special place in my RC collection.
The Tundra has been my default crawler for the past 4 years and has performed great considering it has some of the smallest 1.9 tires you can get at just 95mm tall. While that helps in the scale department it really makes it a struggle to get up and over some of the obstacles that wouldn't be a problem with a larger tire.
However, this year it started to really show it's age more and more through the various events that I attended, earning more and more scars. I don't want the body to be completely destroyed so I decided that before that happened I would restore it and then retire it and start a new body project over this winter.
Where to go from here?
The problem was where to go from the Tundra? I didn't want to go back to a lexan body as they just aren't scale enough for me for a crawler. That doesn't leave too many options that fit a crawler. Tamiya makes a few but none really excited me. RC4WD makes a couple but again, nothing was very exciting or new. There are a few Jeep versions from AsiaTees but I've never really been a Jeep fan as cool as those bodies are. That seemed to leave only one solution, modify an existing toy grade body. Both Nikko and New Bright make 1:10 hard abs plastic bodies that can be used on hobby grade crawlers. Often the only modifications that are needed are wheelbase length and a body mounting method. So I started searching through what was currently available on eBay.
So what's next?
I did make a decision, found the body I wanted and have picked out a theme that I will be going with. The body will be receiving multiple modifications, lots of lights and possibly even a full custom interior as it didn't come with one. I received the body last week and have started tearing it down to figure out what needs to be done to reach the goal. In the next post I'll share what the new body is as well as the theme inspiration and what it will take to get there.