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  1. #1
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    Thoughts on 2WD vs 4WD

    Just some thoughts to help someone searching for this topic in the future.

    Been out of RC for about 10 years and recently bought a 1/16 Summit (4WD...only option) and a Rustler VXL (2WD...only option). Yes, these are 2 completley vehicles, scales, power, etc....but heres my opinion.

    Short answer: I will choose 2WD all day, every day, for bashing UNLESS, the areas I will be driving in are ALL rough terrain...like very rough terrain...OR...I decide to get a dedicated rough terrain 4WD basher that I will drive to rough bash spots.

    Long answer: The Rustler definitely pushed more in turns and I had to watch the throttle or the turn would take too wide...but that WAS SO FUN!!! Driving on the limits of traction and "steering with the throttle" was so much more fun than the "point and shoot" of the 4WD Summit. And the fact of the matter is when a 4WD breaks it will take longer to repair and you will have more parts to buy (depending on what you break, yes). If you don't mind that extra work, complication, and cost then go for it...and thats not a sarcastic statement. If you just want backyard, medium-terrain, fun vehicle. Go 2WD. Another way to think about it is this. If you are THAT concerned about being able to go over a little rougher terrain or grass and just have to have the ability to turn a little tighter on-throttle, then go 4WD. In my experience the 4WD can go a little further and over a little tougher terrain, but it still "diffs-out" eventually. It's not true, locked, 4WD. Hope some of that helps someone...or keeps you researching and leaves you utterly confused.

  2. #2
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    The thing that puts me off from 2wd electrics is rear brakes only! That is a huge bummer when you are going fast.

  3. #3
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    I'm actually rethinking this now that I've had the Rustler out on uneven terrain. That thing will hardly turn at ALL unless you are almost or all the way OFF throttle....I take back my statement about choosing 2WD all day every day. I need to change that statement to "2WD all day, every day, IF you have perfectly flat ground to drive on. The Rustler specifically is so wheelie happy it really just amounts to an off road drag racer that handles really well when OFF throttle.

  4. #4
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    Since I'm on the subject is it possible I jacked up the diff and now have semi-locked/locked diffs? I had to replace the entire tranny cover as the rear A-arm mount is part of the stock tranny cover and I broke that off my first run. I ordered and installed the RPM hybrid cover. I only had literally 3 laps around my backyard before I had to do that job, so I don't remember if the Ruslter turned THAT BAD before I did the replacement. I mean...unless I'm almost all the way off throttle it just won't turn at all. I tested it by making it "diff out". I put a foot on one rear wheel and lifted the other off the ground and applied throttle...the free wheel spun easily, but is it possible under normal driving they are not as free spinning? Maybe I screwed something up? I am now not satisfied with my second RC purchase lol. I'm leaning towards a 1/10 Summit or a TRX-4. I would maybe get another basher in the future but probably 4x4...The Rustler is basically a drag racer that can go off road in really straight lines

  5. #5
    RC Qualifier IanRose's Avatar
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    Reminder that there are atleast 22 screws and nuts that need to be removed to get into a traxxas 2wd transmition. I have a 2wd stampede but it is not even a fraction of a rc then my revo was. Might have to give a slash 4x4 a try.
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  6. #6
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    I have a slash 2wd and a 4wd. The 2wd is very much like the rustler in many ways. For bashing there is no doubt the simplicity of a 2wd is great and very tuff. The reduced weight helps quite a bit in saving it from damage.

    If you like handling or speed at all then 4wd is the way to go. As mentioned before the turn-in and braking on the 4wd is night and day better. It takes a bit more to get them dialed in with the extra weight. It appears most companies that offered aluminum race grade LCG kits have stopped making them for the slash 4x4.

    Any of you with the 2wd rides might want to check out chuck works RC. He has cheap chassis kits. Some models convert to mid engine which I have always been curious how much that would improve the handling.

    -Liberty

  7. #7
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Nitronaught's Avatar
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    2WD easier maintenance than 4WD.
    2WD lighter and better run time than 4WD.

    But IMHO for everything else about offroad R/C's 4WD is way more controllable when you get the hang of it and your setup right.
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  8. #8
    RC Champion NYbandit33's Avatar
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    The vehicle itself and the surface being driven on are the biggest factors for me. I wouldn't be able to pick one over the other. These are just my general opinions and I understand not everyone will agree.

    I don't even bother driving my Rustler in the grass anymore. Even with good tires and raised suspension, it doesn't have the clearance or the weight to handle most grass surfaces. The 2wd with this vehicle is a lot of fun on the street and compact dirt like a baseball field but that's about it.

    I had two 4x4 slash's (unfortunately sold thinking I was getting out of the hobby) that were a blast on manicured backyard length grass but medium cut grass at the park was a little too tall for it. The 4x4 definitely makes it easier to drive and the VXL is more then enough to power the small wheels it has. It probably has the best handling and control of any other traxxas 1/10 vehicle. I just picked up a 2wd slash that I plan on making my main backyard basher. I've only rested it quickly but I can tell it doesn't have the traction and control a 4x4 would. I'm bringing it to a baseball field with short grass tomorrow morning and Ill see what I think.

    I am not a fan of the stampede (2wd or 4wd). The 2wd is a top heavy wheelie machine and the VXL is not enough to power the 4x4. The wheel base is also a hair too short. I picked up a 4x4 assuming it was going to be just like the 4wd slash but better in rough terrain. After a few runs I was not impressed. Got hot quickly on conservative gearing and it felt slow. I was able to get my hands on an X-Maxx for good price and sold this after a few weeks.

    The X-Maxx is a game changer (considering only Traxxas vehicles) for rough off road terrain. The size, weight, suspension and 4x4 allows the truck to drive thru thick grass and puddles just as smoothly as my Rustler does on pavement. It cant handle heavy snow but 3" is no problem. I keep the TSM down so its not so "point and shoot" but its 4x4 makes it very easy to control.
    Last edited by NYbandit33; 03-17-2018 at 12:51 AM.
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  9. #9
    RC Qualifier IanRose's Avatar
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    Today i was running my p2de on hard packed snow. It did no problem, thought of this thread.

    The 2wd platforms are super dependent on the tires, if you habe a colection of tires youre set, as far as bashing haveing fun. However In a track enviroment i think a p2de would be useless. Unfortunatly there hasnt been a proper track around me in a while.
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  10. #10
    RC Racer
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanRose View Post
    The 2wd platforms are super dependent on the tires, if you habe a colection of tires youre set, as far as bashing haveing fun.
    Agreed. I put 17mm hubs on my Rusty and run 1/8 scale buggy wheels. Badlands are a great A/T tire in this size. I have no problems with turning even at high speed.

  11. #11
    RC Qualifier IanRose's Avatar
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    I feel like this thread missed TSM. I have yet to try an rc with stability managment but the demo videos seem pretty convincing that it makes a 2wd slash bashable aka drivable. How dose a 2wd traxxas compare with tsm?
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  12. #12
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Greatscott's Avatar
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    2WD and 4WD offer different driving experiences, and it is fun to drive both.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nitronaught View Post
    2WD easier maintenance than 4WD.
    Between the 2WD Slash and 4WD Slash, I find the 4WD easier to work on, it has no real transmission, and the only real pain is getting to the diffs, which is easier (for me) than taking apart the Magnum 272.

    Quote Originally Posted by IanRose View Post
    I feel like this thread missed TSM. I have yet to try an rc with stability managment but the demo videos seem pretty convincing that it makes a 2wd slash bashable aka drivable. How dose a 2wd traxxas compare with tsm?
    I haven't tried TSM either. I have a Rally (freshly converted from a 4WD Slash) that I want to put an AVC RX in to see how it does compared to not having any type of active vehicle control.
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  13. #13
    RC Champion lektro's Avatar
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    Add A Gyro, for stability management..... easy way out!
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