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  1. #1
    RC poster
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    Victoria, BC
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    Battery advice for soon-to-be TRX-4 owner?

    Hi,

    After a multi-decade hiatus from having RC gear (my last car was a LaTrax Corvette c1980) I知 planning on getting a TRX-4 Defender in the near future.

    While the vehicle decision has been relatively easy, I知 a bit perplexed by the scope and choice of batteries/chargers available. I壇 like to keep it simple so I知 thinking of going for a Traxxas charger and battery (or batteries) but I知 wondering what you all might recommend to get started.

    What I have gathered so far:
    - I should go LiPo rather than NiMH (for many reasons). LiPo痴 are not THAT scary and I知 careful with gear.
    - 2S batteries are well suited for the TRX-4. (Maybe at some point a 3S could be fun to try out though.)

    But I知 still wondering:
    - Approximately how long would a 5800mAh or 7600mAh 2S battery last with a TRX-4. I realize that this depends on gear used, terrain, driving technique, etc, but are we talking 30mins +/- or 90mins +/-? Perhaps more?
    - How many batteries to get right off the bat? (Knowing the duration from the question above will help determine this, but is there an intangible factor that I知 simply not thinking of since I知 not a current driver?)
    - Which Traxxas charger is a good match for the batteries that will be used with the TRX-4?

    (I realize that perhaps this could have been posted in the battery/charger section but I think I need guidance specifically from you TRX-4 folks given the uniqueness of this truck.)

    Many thanks in advance,
    -Neil

  2. #2
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Greatscott's Avatar
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    Mar 2004
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    N. Idaho... Da Sticks!
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    6,491
    Welcome back to the hobby!!!!

    Lipos are no more or less dangerous than any other battery chemistry, they just take a bit more care and feeding compared to other batteries. The biggest two things are to have your ESC in lipo mode and always balance charge, easy-peasy!

    With my 2S 5000mha packs I am seeing around 90 minutes of run time, and around an hour with my 3S 4300mha packs. Between the two, I like the 3S a lot better, it is nice having a bit more power and wheel speed when you want it. So far nothing has broke due to the higher voltage.

    As far as chargers go, I have heard good things about Traxxas chargers, but I have never owned one. I have a Hyperion 0606i and a Hitec x4, both I really like. The current go-to packs are SMC batteries, they are inexpensive and have not heard anything bad about them.

    I would start out with no less than two packs, and if you budget supports, go three.
    Submarine Qualified, Chief Inducted, Navy Retired

  3. #3
    RC poster
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    Jan 2018
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    Thank you GreatScott! I have read a number of your posts, and especially your main TRX post, so I greatly appreciate your experience and input here. Those are some rather decent run times on those batteries... and I had a hunch that starting with a minimum of 2 batteries would be a good idea.

    I’ll take a look at the other charger and battery options you mentioned. I’ve seen the SMC batteries referred to many times here, so hopefully they are available in Canada.

    Might anyone else have some thoughts to share on this topic?

  4. #4
    RC Qualifier
    Join Date
    May 2014
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    812
    Hey Neil, you'll love the trx-4, it's a great rig. Battery wise I run 2s 5000mah and get 1 1/2 run time. But need to find a 3s that will fit in the tray. How many batteries, I'd say depending on where you like to run. If I go out of my way for a outting with the trucks I personally like two batteries for each truck. Can't say anything personally on traxxas chargers or batteries. But I've always heard good things about the chargers and batteries. I've been using hi tec chargers and onyx or gen ace batteries. Lipo batteries are great when treated correctly. But again same goes with any battery.

  5. #5
    RC poster
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    Jan 2018
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    Victoria, BC
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    Thank you for that feedback Bike Mechanic... Again I’m impressed to hear that 2S 5000mah batteries are getting such long run times. I’ve been curious about possibly, in time, getting a 3S so I’ll keep an eye on the battery sizes. It’s also making me wonder how long one would get from a 7000+mah Lipo.

    It’s good to hear that you’ve had a good experience with Onyx and Gen Ace. My LHS has those, plus I found SMC is available in Canada. Between all of those and the Traxxas, I’ve got some good options. I’ve also seen Hi Tec chargers locally so I’ll take a closer look at them too.

    It is definitely sounding like a minimum of 2 batteries is the way to go. (I had another thought about this... In addition to just getting to drive more with 2+ batteries, if you only have one battery and it dies on the trail, you have to carry the truck back! The TRX-4 may not be as heavy as some of the really big trucks, but I’m guessing it not that much fun to carry long distances.)

    Between the info above and other reading I’ve done on the site, I think I’ve got what I need. Of course I’m open to mor info if anyone would like to share. I’ll keep an eye on this thread. Thanks!

  6. #6
    RC Enthusiast
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
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    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Neil View Post
    Hi,

    After a multi-decade hiatus from having RC gear (my last car was a LaTrax Corvette c1980) I知 planning on getting a TRX-4 Defender in the near future.

    While the vehicle decision has been relatively easy, I知 a bit perplexed by the scope and choice of batteries/chargers available. I壇 like to keep it simple so I知 thinking of going for a Traxxas charger and battery (or batteries) but I知 wondering what you all might recommend to get started.

    What I have gathered so far:
    - I should go LiPo rather than NiMH (for many reasons). LiPo痴 are not THAT scary and I知 careful with gear.
    - 2S batteries are well suited for the TRX-4. (Maybe at some point a 3S could be fun to try out though.)

    But I知 still wondering:
    - Approximately how long would a 5800mAh or 7600mAh 2S battery last with a TRX-4. I realize that this depends on gear used, terrain, driving technique, etc, but are we talking 30mins +/- or 90mins +/-? Perhaps more?
    - How many batteries to get right off the bat? (Knowing the duration from the question above will help determine this, but is there an intangible factor that I知 simply not thinking of since I知 not a current driver?)
    - Which Traxxas charger is a good match for the batteries that will be used with the TRX-4?

    (I realize that perhaps this could have been posted in the battery/charger section but I think I need guidance specifically from you TRX-4 folks given the uniqueness of this truck.)

    Many thanks in advance,
    -Neil
    Gens ace 2200 2s, 5000 2s lipo fit for trx4 .

  7. #7
    RC Qualifier SummitonSlingrs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Salt Lake City, UT
    Posts
    298
    Hi Neil,
    Welcome back!! Great choice in the TRX-4!
    I have half a dozen GensAce 2S lipo's 4200 & 5000mah and have always been happy with them.
    I was in your same boat when I started out. Didn't know much about these newer batteries (LiPo) and wanted to stick with the Traxxas batteries and charger and so I did. Later I ended up getting a Venom Pro Duo 80W X2 Dual Charger. It provides some options for charging has a little more power and a display showing you what level (Volts) your batteries are at, how many mah you have put in(charging) or pulled out (discharging) and a few other tidbits.

    I found now that I have learned more about Lipo's I like using the more advanced charger. I do not own a Hitec but have always heard good things. Just by the looks of your text above you will catch on fast and would take advantage of the advanced charger soon enough. With that said I had year or so of fun with the Traxxas charger and batteries.

    On the 7000mah battery, I'll bet you get tired of driving the truck before you run that battery out....
    No seriously you would have epic runtime but would be carrying a lot of weight up high with that huge battery. I would suggest two smaller batteries
    Last edited by SummitonSlingrs; 01-16-2018 at 12:07 PM.
    Sla2hP4deXSummitRustyTRX$Bigfoot#14TEC2.0Rally

  8. #8
    RC Racer
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    Location
    Redding, CA
    Posts
    163
    I agree with everyone else, nice choice with the TRX-4!

    If it helps, I exclusively run 3s batteries, even though I have 2s batteries I could use as well.

    I have four 2200MAH Gens Ace 3S batteries. They are quite small and light weight.

    They do not fit perfectly in the tray, as they are smaller than the battery tray in the TRX-4, but I just use a spacer that I made to take up the extra room. It actually works out well for positioning; it cuts down on the weight (COG and drivetrain stress), and I can actually bias the weight toward the front or the back as desired.

    I get about 30-40 min Run time per battery.

    One of the best things is they are only $15 a piece shipped to your door in 2 days with Amazon Prime.

  9. #9
    RC poster
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    Jan 2018
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    Victoria, BC
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    9
    It’s great to hear about your experience SummitonSlingrs. I too would like things fairly easy to begin with, but you’re right, I do suspect that I’ll pick up the art of charging without much issue. I’ve read good things about the Venom Pro Duo chargers - I’ll take a closer look.

    All will not be lost though if I start with a Traxxas charger and then go more advanced though... My 8yr old son has been expressing an interest in a Slash, so he could use my Traxxas charger when the time comes.

    And it’s funny you mention that I myself might run out of energy before the vehicle’s battery does... I was actually thinking that same thing when I noticed that Traxxas has 7000+ mah and 10,000 mah (!) batteries. I’m feeling pretty good about starting with two mid-capacity batteries, with an eye on a third (perhaps SMC, Gen Ace, Onyx to try them out.) Mind you, before I take the plunge I’ll take a serious look at smaller capacity batteries in order to shed some weight. (I noticed that the TRX has a sunken inner battery tray of sorts, so I’ll see what fits well in there.)

    Mayme, good to know about those Gen Aces!

    ExplorerNate87, that’s interesting that you’re running primarily 3S. I’ve seen some TRX speed runs (sounds funny to write that) with those and they sure do pack a punch. It’s likely more speed than I need but I’m intrigued about the smaller size and lighter weight. Shorter run times would be fine as I have a nice crawling spot not far from home.

    Guys, I very much appreciate all of this input! The plan is to head to the LHS on Monday to get set up, so if there’s any other starter input, I’m all ears.

    (And yes, I’ll be getting an aluminum servo horn right away for WHEN the stock one goes.)

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