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  1. #1
    RC Racer
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    Big Bore aluminum shocks

    Has anyone changed the original shocks on the Slash to the Aluminum big bores? Is it worth the change? do they perform better?

  2. #2
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    The GTR shocks I believe are an actual bigger shock


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  3. #3
    RC Champion Mr Wolf's Avatar
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    I been running the aluminium big bores on my LCG race Slash for several years.

    They do perform better than the Ultras due to having a much smoother action. Other benefits are (1) the oil doesn't gunk up any where near as quickly, (2) they come with TiN coated hardened steel shock shafts which are far stronger than the stock shafts and (3) they fit Losi 2.5" and 2.0" buggy springs perfectly which provide great tuning options.

    Despite their name, they have exactly the same internal bore as the stock Ultra Shocks. As already mentioned this is smaller than the GTRs but the level of damping is still perfectly adequate given the weight of the truck, even when running fairly light weight oils and 2-hole pistons.
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  4. #4
    RC Champion zedorda's Avatar
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    It is a common misunderstanding of TiN coated shafts as being stronger than stock shafts. Titanium nitride is an extremely hard ceramic material, often used as a coating on titanium alloys, steel, carbide, and aluminium components to improve the substrate's surface properties. It only protects the shafts from debris like rocks from scratching the surface which can then damage the seals on the shaft. There is no increased strength from bending or breaking.

  5. #5
    RC Champion Mr Wolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zedorda View Post
    It is a common misunderstanding of TiN coated shafts as being stronger than stock shafts. Titanium nitride is an extremely hard ceramic material, often used as a coating on titanium alloys, steel, carbide, and aluminium components to improve the substrate's surface properties. It only protects the shafts from debris like rocks from scratching the surface which can then damage the seals on the shaft. There is no increased strength from bending or breaking.
    Agree 100% and there's certainly no misunderstanding on my part. I wasn't suggesting that they're stronger due a micron thin TiN coating - that would be a bit silly. The TiN coated shafts are much stronger due to the grade of steel used in the shafts which, compared to the stock shafts, is highly resistant to bending.
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  6. #6
    RC Turnbuckle Jr. Greatscott's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stampedejim View Post
    Has anyone changed the original shocks on the Slash to the Aluminum big bores? Is it worth the change? do they perform better?
    Depends on how much tuning you have done on you current shocks. If you have tuned your Ultra Shocks to the point where you can't get better performance out of them, then GTRs or Big Bores will be a good upgrade. Without tuning, the aftermarket shocks will show a marginal amount of performance increase because they are smoother and have more volume to absorb more heat, that is about it.
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  7. #7
    RC Champion zedorda's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Wolf View Post
    Agree 100% and there's certainly no misunderstanding on my part. I wasn't suggesting that they're stronger due a micron thin TiN coating - that would be a bit silly. The TiN coated shafts are much stronger due to the grade of steel used in the shafts which, compared to the stock shafts, is highly resistant to bending.
    The Traxxas sourced Big Bore TiN shafts are the exact same material as the stock shafts for the Ultra shocks the shafts have been tested afew times proving this in the past. It is the aluminum bodies of the Big Bores that reduce the shafts from bending as often. Because they keep the shaft in a truer/smoother center stopping them from defecting and binding which causes bends.

    Traxxas doesn't produce any stronger shock shafts for the ultra/big bore shocks, marketing can make it sound otherwise. Here is a video of someone changing out the TiN shafts for stronger shafts from the Vaterra which also eliminate the E-clips that can also break pretty easy.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=99rC6OfJxnY

  8. #8
    RC Champion Mr Wolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zedorda View Post
    The Traxxas sourced Big Bore TiN shafts are the exact same material as the stock shafts for the Ultra shocks the shafts have been tested afew times proving this in the past. It is the aluminum bodies of the Big Bores that reduce the shafts from bending as often. Because they keep the shaft in a truer/smoother center stopping them from defecting and binding which causes bends.

    Traxxas doesn't produce any stronger shock shafts for the ultra/big bore shocks, marketing can make it sound otherwise. Here is a video of someone changing out the TiN shafts for stronger shafts from the Vaterra which also eliminate the E-clips that can also break pretty easy.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=99rC6OfJxnY
    Wow, if this is true it would be great to hear it from Traxxas directly because this is their description of the shafts:

    "These hardened, ground steel shafts have a super tough titanium nitride coating with a micro-polished finish that reduces stiction for smoother performance and resists scratching for much longer shaft life. The special hardened ground steel is extra strong to prevent bending."

    Leaving aside the fact they cost over 3 times as much as the stock shafts, this description and in particular the use of the word "special" implies very strongly that they are not made of the same steel as the stock shafts.

    I haven't sought to conduct any tests myself as I wouldn't want to deliberately wreck a TiN coated shaft but if you could post a link to the source of the "proof" that would be useful.

    I'm actually very sceptical of your claim as my personal experience suggests that they are in fact much stronger. When I first started racing a Traxxas Rustler about 9 years ago (hard packed clay with several jumps) I ran the stock Ultra shocks with aluminium caps. After I'd bent 4-5 shock shafts (mostly rears) in as many months on the track I replaced the shafts with TiN coated ones and never managed to bend one again in the following 2 years at the same track at which point I switched to BB shocks for the better action. In fact I've never bent a TiN coated shaft while racing but I guess I just could be lucky.

    Could someone from Traxxas clarify this please? i.e. Are the stock Ultra shock shafts made of the same steel as the TiN coated ones?
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  9. #9
    RC Champion zedorda's Avatar
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    Their marketing of the big bores prevents them from ever admitting or even wanting to admit the fact. But the fact that it is a TiN coating should clue you into why they are not truely hardened shafts. Heating steel to harden it prevents the use of any plating harder than the parent metal. So why would they coat the shafts with something softer it kind of defeats the reason for the coating in the first place. They did the TiN coating because it is cheaper than heat treating and you can see it. The coating is the hardening spoke of in the marketing.

    I understand when you believe marketing it is hard to believe anything else and you have no real reason to believe me other than all I want to do here is help people.

  10. #10
    RC Champion Mr Wolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zedorda View Post
    Their marketing of the big bores prevents them from ever admitting or even wanting to admit the fact. But the fact that it is a TiN coating should clue you into why they are not truely hardened shafts. Heating steel to harden it prevents the use of any plating harder than the parent metal. So why would they coat the shafts with something softer it kind of defeats the reason for the coating in the first place. They did the TiN coating because it is cheaper than heat treating and you can see it. The coating is the hardening spoke of in the marketing.

    I understand when you believe marketing it is hard to believe anything else and you have no real reason to believe me other than all I want to do here is help people.
    Frankly, I don't understand your comment. It seems to be lacking in logic and in contradiction of your initial post #4 above which I agreed with).

    As Traxxas state, the TiN coating reduces friction and increases resistance to scratching. It also reduces oxidisation which is another benefit. Can we agree on that?

    It can certainly be applied to hardened steel and is in fact even used on tool steel e.g. drill bits. And what's with the "why would they coat the shafts with something softer" - with a hardness (HV) rating of over 2000 it's over twice as hard as hardened steel isn't it?

    I think your implication that Traxxas is somehow hood-winking consumers into buying upgraded shock shafts with its marketing is way off the mark.

    Please post up details of the shock shaft strength testing you referred to earlier.
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  11. #11
    RC Champion zedorda's Avatar
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    Yes I am not good with words and would never consider myself a good teacher. I will try and be more coherent. As for the shaft testing I speak of they are from youtube channels that were around when the big bores were first released but have since disappeared over the years.

    As for the "hardening" I am trying to explain is what's called "case hardening". Where only the surface is hardened not the full shaft so the hardening doesn't increase the resistance to bending the shaft. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Case-hardening

    As for the marketing they use the word "special" because there isn't a real material change or they would proudly say what the new material is. Because through case hardening with the TiN coating process they can still claim it is as "hardened" steel shaft. They are not "hood-winking" they are just leaving out details and letting the customer assume the meaning.

    And sorry I never should of said anything about a plating processes it only confused the subject. I just meant they wouldn't do a TiN coating to already hardened steel.
    Last edited by zedorda; 09-25-2019 at 01:24 PM.

  12. #12
    RC Champion Mr Wolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zedorda View Post
    Yes I am not good with words and would never consider myself a good teacher. I will try and be more coherent. As for the shaft testing I speak of they are from youtube channels that were around when the big bores were first released but have since disappeared over the years.
    Mmm'n, somewhat unlikely I suspect since Big Bore shocks were first released several years before Youtube was even launched. Either way, there's nothing available to support your assertion that they use the same steel which doesn't really surprise me as I think this is incorrect.

    It's evident to me from my own experience of their durability that they are very much not made of the same steel as Traxxas' description implies. And if you search the archive, you'll also find many forum members in old threads reporting exactly the same findings as me i.e. bending stock shafts but not the TiN coated shafts, even when fitted to plastic Ultra shocks.
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  13. #13
    RC Champion zedorda's Avatar
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    I have no idea when the Big Bores were released and I guess I should of said when the Slash came out but before the Ultimate which had the Big Bores preinstalled. I guess somewhere around 2008 well after the start of Youtube in 2005.

    When the Slash came out was the first time I had heard of the Big Bore shocks my bad for assuming it was also when they were released.
    Last edited by zedorda; 09-26-2019 at 03:15 PM.

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