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  1. #1
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    OSF's Vaccaio Mod

    The Traxxas Xmaxx has it's Kershaw Mod...named after Dan Kershaw (God bless his memory), and from his Kershaw Designs business; and the Spartan has its' Vaccaio Mod...named after Steve Vaccaio, and from his Offshore Electronics business.

    Both mods do the same thing, but to different vehicles. They both replace the factory electronics with a more robust electronics package. I did the Kershaw Mod to my Xmaxx (first thing) years ago, but never changed out my OEM electronics with my Spartan. Fortunately for me, I was able to use my modified Spartan electronics successfully for over 7 years without a hitch.

    Now however (unfortunately), I finally blew out my OEM Spartan ESC and so, I decided to try out OSE's Vaccaio Mod. It's been around since the beginning of the Spartan, but at the time (when the Spartan first came out) I was (like I said) running fine.

    The OSF Vaccaio Mod consists of a Leopard 4084 (1600kv) motor, a Seaking 180amp ESC, and a 45mm - 3/16" bore CNC Prop. I'm just starting on it now (during my free time), and so I thought I'd post my progress and any interesting installation techniques that I use. Anyway here goes, so wish me luck.

    Last edited by ReglarGuy; 07-21-2018 at 03:50 PM.
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  2. #2
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    I looked into You Tube to see if there was anything on how to do this mod, but there wasn't. I did see how well it works, and from what I could see it seems to be a very nice performance upgrade. I also seen (as guys were putting in their batteries), that some guys put their ESC's with motor wires facing the motor, and some with their motor wires facing the servo. I chose to install mine with the motor wires facing the front. (IMO) I think this is better, because I can have much shorter motor and battery wire lengths.

    The motor shaft's flat spot is 1mm longer than that of the stock motor, and its' shaft is also 1mm shorter. This won't be a problem for anyone not wanting to install a Traxxas RPM sensor, but if you are like me I like having it. Here are the two things I did to solve that two problems.


    1). This cutout allows me to pressure fit my Traxxas RPM sensor securely.
    2). And, I made and added a 1mm shim between the RPM's magnet mount and my collet.

    One more thing to be aware of and that is, this Leopard cooling jacket's water ports are spread wider than that of the OSE stock motor's jacket. As you lube the "O" rings and install the new water jacket, mount it to the Spartan's electronic equipment tray, and adjust it's position so the rear port clears before the lube dries up.

    The ESC mount was easy enough to make, and the ESC wires are easy enough to shorten, but I am having to make and install my capacitor pack differently than what I did with my Traxxas sock components. When I make and install it, I will give you all another update.





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  3. #3
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    Hello Reg here again, I did this mod years ago, it’s a great motor and esc, my boat is ridicules fast! I run the stock plastic props so far, got some metal ones but the boat seemed fastest with the stock plastic, I would like your opinion on what you found out. Also where did you buy your shaft upgrade, mine is showing some signs now of cracking near where the shaft is solder or welded onto the flex shaft. I don't remember where I purchased it, I guess off ebay, can't remember, send me a link.

    Did you find a good video on sharpening the metal prop and exactly which one did you buy?

    Reg

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by regr View Post
    Hello Reg here again, I did this mod years ago, it’s a great motor and esc, my boat is ridicules fast! I run the stock plastic props so far, got some metal ones but the boat seemed fastest with the stock plastic, I would like your opinion on what you found out. Also where did you buy your shaft upgrade, mine is showing some signs now of cracking near where the shaft is solder or welded onto the flex shaft. I don't remember where I purchased it, I guess off ebay, can't remember, send me a link.

    Did you find a good video on sharpening the metal prop and exactly which one did you buy?

    Reg

    I've seen good things about this mod in You Tube, but I haven't finished putting it in yet to tell you how I like it. I am still making my CC Cap Pack. I had it almost made a couple of days ago, but goofed it up at the end. When I get done with it all I will have left is to make two water cooled heat sinks...one for my Seaking ESC caps and one for my CC Cap pack's caps.

    I run a stock shaft on my Spartan, and I got them both from Traxxas. I have two...one on my boat, and one as a spare. As of now, I still use the original driveshaft that came with my boat. It is 7 years old, but in perfect shape.

    As far as what prop to run, it all depends on what motor you have. With the Leopard 4082 1600kv X2 motor you want to run the CNC 45mm - 3/16" bored prop. With the Leopard 4082 8=1800kv X2 motor you want to run the CNC 42mm - 3/16" bored prop. Both are the new metal props that Off Shore electronics sells, and both don't need balanced and sharpened. I ran the CNC 42mm - 3/16" bored prop with my stock Traxxas electronics, and it worked very well.

    Below is a picture of where I am at with making my CC Cap Pack. You can see my future CC Cap Pack's base on my Spartan's electronic tray (on top of the receiver box), and you can see my current progress on my CC Cap Pack circuit board.

    Last edited by ReglarGuy; 08-03-2018 at 05:06 AM.
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  5. #5
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    Finished my CC Cap Pack yesterday, and tested the capacitance this morning. The original two cap CC Cap Pack that came with my Seaking ESC was marked for 3000uf, but read 2900uf. This is normal for caps to be a little off from what they are marked. The CC Cap Pack that I made is marked for 3020uf, and reads 2910uf.

    Pretty darn close which make me very happy with it. I test fitted it after work today, and everything fits good and proper. Now that my CC Cap pack tests to within spec, I'm ready for a powerup test. From there all I have left to do is make two water cooled heat sinks, and I'll be finished. I need to make one heat sink for my CC Cap pack, and one for my ESC's caps. They should be relatively easy to make.







    P.S. The cap values I used were three 680uf caps and one 1000uf cap in parallel. Also, the 1000uf cap was 2mm shorter (for some reason) than the three 680's. I made a plastic spacer for the 1000uf cap from the top of a Tide detergent container.

    Depending on what caps are use will determine what spacers (if any) are needed for the tops of all the caps to be even with each other. This is very important if planning to fit a heat sink to a CC Cap Pack assembly.
    Last edited by ReglarGuy; 08-07-2018 at 06:08 PM.
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  6. #6
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    What is the purpose of the cap pac you built, sorry I don't know much yet about LIPO's
    Reg

  7. #7
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    It allows you to have longer wire runs form your batteries to your ESC, and it absorbs voltage spikes to keep your ESC's caps running cooler and with better longevity. If you look at the ESC's with higher current ratings, you will usually see that they have Cap Packs connected to the ESC's input battery wires.

    The only problem with these generic installations of these cap packs are that they make you have to use longer wires for them to reach your batteries properly. And, they also, just barely give you what you have to have rather than what you really need.

    What I do is not only make a beefier CC Cap Pack, but it's more streamlined with better rated components. This allows for even shorter wire lengths, and even better spike absorption. Because of this, all my boat's electronics work better, smoother, longer, and I have a little bit better of a cushion in case of an accidental overload.
    Last edited by ReglarGuy; 08-08-2018 at 01:12 PM.
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  8. #8
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    Finished my CC Cap packs water cooled heat sink today.

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  9. #9
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    Started and finished making my ESC cap's heat sink yesterday. It looks ugly here, but I wanted to show the securing technique I used. When soldering an assembly, it important to use as little metal as possible (to secure the work piece), and to secure it as much as possible (you don't want things moving around while you're trying to solder).



    Here it is all cleaned up, and with a heat insulator at the tip. I used an insulator, so that I could keep the heat from the ESC heat sink separate from the ESC's cap heat sink.



    I just set my heat sink in the position that will be its' final resting place, but I will secure it in this position tonight. I just wanted to make sure that it fitted and finish was the way I wanted.



    Next, I'll start putting things back together, and dress my wire harness.
    Last edited by ReglarGuy; 08-13-2018 at 02:04 PM.
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  10. #10
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    Got my electronics tray back together and dressed all my wires. Also I checked for leaks, and I'm all ready for a powerup. Here's a look at where I'm at so far.







    Take a look (above) at my idea of the mounting of my telemetry's sensors. More on that in just a minute.

    Here's how the final adjustment of my RPM sensor turned out (below). I shouldn't have anymore rubbing issues as I did with the stock setup.



    For my sensor mounts, I installed little tubes on both my heat sinks, and installed a small tube on my motor. To bend brass without kinking it, all you have to do is heat up the brass until RED and then quickly toss it in a bowl of water. Do that a couple of times, and then you can bend the brass with your fingers.

    For my sensors to fit in my brass tubes I bent the temp resister in the position I needed, cut away any wire slop, and then re-shrink tubed the area to cover the exposed wire and to keep the sensor spear headed (below).







    Anyway, next I'll tell you how my powerup turns out.
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  11. #11
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    Well, I powered up, calibrated, programed, and changed the prop today. I did have to switch two ESC motor inputs and recolor code my wires for me to get a CCW prop rotation. I also checked for leaks again, and everything seems to be in order.



    Next I'll install my newly equipped electronics tray back into my Spartan, and take everything out on the water for a test run.
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  12. #12
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    Well, everything tests good on my bench; no leaks, telemetry sensors all link and work, output power to the prop, steering...etc. Hopefully, this weekend the weather will be nice for a test run.

    Below, is what I had for seven trouble free years, and under that is my new setup that I'll be running this weekend.



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  13. #13
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    Well, I ran my Spartan today (along with another boat that I modified), and my Spartan turned out great. My average speeds were comfortably in the 60's and my temps were all 108 degrees with water temps at 84 degrees.

    I did have to re-reverse two of my motor leads back to the way I originally had it, but that was a good thing. I will also reprogram my LVC back down to 3.2vdc. I kicked it up a little bit due to me not having any experience with this particular setup. If you guys have any questions, or you need help with installing this mod; let me know. It's a nice mod and I'm very happy with it.

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  14. #14
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    Well, I did the last few small adjustments and ran this "water shredding monument of manly madness" again. I got to say, this thing runs like an ape that's been physically ravaged by another overly amorous ape.
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  15. #15
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    I think out of all the different RC vehicles a guy can have fun with, boats are the most coolest.

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    I have just about the same setup as you do, waiting on the 3/16" cable and new stinger though. In the process of figuring out how to transfer the maximum amount of power to speed now. I've grinded down 2 cables, but after i silversoldered, thickened the motorside of the cable the stock cable has held (so far). The torque is insane with this setup, and i haven't really been able to go much faster, topspeed wise than stock, because it tends to end in a violent deathspiral. Working on improving the balance/handling atm.

  17. #17
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    In the process of figuring out how to transfer the maximum amount of power to speed now. I've grinded down 2 cables, but after I silver soldered, thickened the motor side of the cable the stock cable has held (so far).
    I don't know why, but the stock Traxxas collet has to be tightened all the way down (to the end of its' thread length) for it to be able to hold its' .150" cable securely. One of the first mods I did (and still use today) is to mill off one thread from the back side of stock Traxxas collet.

    Before: (This isn't a stock Traxxas collet, but looks similar to it.)



    After: (This is a stock Traxxas collet that has been modified.)



    After being modified, this Traxxas stock collet will tighten down a stock Traxxas .150 flex cable half way down its' thread length. If you decide to do this mod as I did, you will no longer have any cable grinding issues (even with your new electronics package).
    Last edited by ReglarGuy; 09-16-2018 at 05:25 AM.
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    I tightened mine all the way in and as hard as i dared without breaking things to itty bitty pieces, still slipping. That was a neat trick you applied! Looks like you also soldered your cable? Haven't had any issues since i thickened my end a bit, and the result is about the same as your mod, it now tightens fully before reaching the end of the thread (and it never actually tightened fully before).

    Quote Originally Posted by ReglarGuy View Post
    I don't know why, but the stock Traxxas collet has to be tightened all the way down (to the end of its' thread length) for it to be able to hold its' .150" cable securely. One of the first mods I did (and still use today) is to mill off one thread from the back side of stock Traxxas collet.

    Before: (This isn't a stock Traxxas collet, but looks similar to it.)

    After: (This is a stock Traxxas collet that has been modified.)

    After being modified, this Traxxas stock collet will tighten down a stock Traxxas .150 flex cable half way down its' thread length. If you decide to do this mod as I did, you will no longer have any cable grinding issues (even with your new electronics package).
    Why have one Spartan when you can have two?

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpartanSW View Post
    Haven't had any issues since I thickened my end a bit, and the result is about the same as your mod, it now tightens fully before reaching the end of the thread (and it never actually tightened fully before).
    Something you may want to consider here. The reason way a flex cable is soldered at its' securing end is to stiffen its' end, and to keep it end from unraveling as the cable is taken in and out for greasing. It's not meant to be used as a way of secure the cable to the collet.

    The reason for not using solder as a securing technique is, solder is a lot softer of a material than what the flex cable itself is made from. So, what you have (by using solder as a way of thickening the cable) is a temporary fix to the underlining problem of not being able to secure the cable all the way. Using solder this way will work for a while, but the in and out of the cable will eventually wear the solder away. The best solution to this securing problem is either a new collet, or milling a thread off the stock one as I did.

    The torque is insane with this setup, and I haven't really been able to go much faster, top speed wise than stock.
    A few things to consider with your modified Spartan. If you put in the same setup as I did, make sure you upgrade your prop from a stock 42mm pitch to a new 45mm pitch. If I were you, I would get the new Off Shore Electronics CND prop. That's what I did. It works great, and it doesn't need balanced. Remember, if you put in the same modification as I did, you went from a 1800kv motor to a 1600kv motor, and you will need to compensate for that to get the most out of your mod.

    Other things that have helped me (with regards to getting more controllable speed and performance out of my Spartan) is by dumping the Teflon tube for a brass one, adjusting the boat's strut all the way back and 1mm down from center, and sharpening the leading edges of the turn fins.

    Also, don't go with four trim tabs on the back of the boat. Yes, they do help with chiming when you're in (and if you want to stay in) the low 50 mph range, but if you want to get (and stay) in the mid 60 plus mph range; all they'll do for you is produce drag. The Spartan is like a bullet when it's in the 60's, but you do have to (also) play with it in a big enough water area for the water to have time to settle down before you come across again in the same previous area. One final thing I can tell you is that the Spartan definitely doesn't like water/wind turbulence at speeds between 63 and 70mph.
    Last edited by ReglarGuy; 09-21-2018 at 07:46 AM.
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  20. #20
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    Something you may want to consider here. The reason way a flex cable is soldered at its' securing end is to stiffen its' end, and to keep it end from unraveling as the cable is taken in and out for greasing. It's not meant to be used as a way of secure the cable to the collet.

    The reason for not using solder as a securing technique is, solder is a lot softer of a material than what the flex cable itself is made from. So, what you have (by using solder as a way of thickening the cable) is a temporary fix to the underlining problem of not being able to secure the cable all the way. Using solder this way will work for a while, but the in and out of the cable will eventually wear the solder away. The best solution to this securing problem is either a new collet, or milling a thread off the stock
    A few things to consider with your modified Spartan. If you put in the same setup as I did, make sure you upgrade your prop from a stock 42mm pitch to a new 45mm pitch. If I were you, I would get the new Off Shore Electronics CND prop. That's what I did. It works great, and it doesn't need balanced. Remember, if you put in the same modification as I did, you went from a 1800kv motor to a 1600kv motor, and you will need to compensate for that to get the most out of your mod.

    Other things that have helped me (with regards to getting more controllable speed and performance out of my Spartan) is by dumping the Teflon tube for a brass one, adjusting the boat's strut all the way back and 1mm down from center, and sharpening the leading edges of the turn fins.

    Also, don't go with four trim tabs on the back of the boat. Yes, they do help with chiming when you're in (and if you want to stay in) the low 50 mph range, but if you want to get (and stay) in the mid 60 plus mph range; all they'll do for you is produce drag. The Spartan is like a bullet when it's in the 60's, but you do have to (also) play with it in a big enough water area for the water to have time to settle down before you come across again in the same previous area. One final thing I can tell you is that the Spartan definitely doesn't like water/wind turbulence at speeds between 63 and 70mph.
    Yes, heard that about the dual trim tabs, already attached them now and never tried em, so i will atleast try it out before i scrap them

    I used the RCBB CNC upgrade prop at first with this setup, but now, after upgrading to the 3/16, i will try this Octura X445.

    Why have one Spartan when you can have two?

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