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  1. #1
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    Newbie to rustler

    Ordered a new rustler yesterday so stoked for it to get here. Anything I should check for out of box or upgrades to do in the future.



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  2. #2
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    Congrats! Great buy!
    Its pretty good out of the box, always room for improvements though. The factory wheelie bar sucks, just ends up damaging the body.
    Rustler 4x4 powered by MambaX

  3. #3
    RC Qualifier Rocketzx1's Avatar
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    Best notion is to upgrade as it breaks. If you donít want to buy new shocks right away, I would order the aluminum shock caps for the ultra shocks that come stock. The plastic caps will flex off the shocks on hard landings and impacts.

    Check your slipper clutch, some times they are loose and thatíll end up causing problems for you. And check the pinion and spur gear mesh, itís not always set correctly also.

    Thatís all I can think off for out of box before first run.


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  4. #4
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    What battery did you buy, the rustler alone won't come with a battery or charger

    Id recommend a 3s lipo i only bought 3s lipos so I'm not sure how fun the car is on 2s or nimh battery but it's a blast on 3s

  5. #5
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    Yeah I didn't plan on doing upgrades till something broke unless you guys know of a known issue they have right away, I could buy the parts and just have them ready. As for the batteries I have 3s batteries I run in my Hoss, Raptor and Blazer, I figured I wouldn't enjoy it as much on anything less.

  6. #6
    RC Racer McCreary's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    Yeah I didn't plan on doing upgrades till something broke unless you guys know of a known issue they have right away, I could buy the parts and just have them ready. As for the batteries I have 3s batteries I run in my Hoss, Raptor and Blazer, I figured I wouldn't enjoy it as much on anything less.
    ESC fan and motor heatsink/fan are a must when running 3s in the Rustler 4x4 VXL. They overheat very easily.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by McCreary View Post
    ESC fan and motor heatsink/fan are a must when running 3s in the Rustler 4x4 VXL. They overheat very easily.
    Can you recommend any that are good? anything that's a plug and play?

  8. #8
    RC Qualifier Rocketzx1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    Yeah I didn't plan on doing upgrades till something broke unless you guys know of a known issue they have right away, I could buy the parts and just have them ready. As for the batteries I have 3s batteries I run in my Hoss, Raptor and Blazer, I figured I wouldn't enjoy it as much on anything less.
    If you leave it stock gearing itís decently fast in 2s, you could always put a 15t pinion on for a bit more speed for 2s. For myself, I run 3s cause I like to go fast with a 15t pinion, I channel my inner Ricky Bobby lol


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  9. #9
    RC Racer McCreary's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    Can you recommend any that are good? anything that's a plug and play?
    I'm using the Traxxas fan on my ESC(#3340). If I'm not mistaken, the Hoss comes with the same fan already installed. On the motor I'm using an Integy T8534BLUE heatsink/dual fan. Both are plug and play. I also dropped to a 10t pinion to help keep the heat down.
    I can't say if they're the best choice because that's all I've tried. A lot of people seem to prefer the Yeah Racing fan over the Traxxas.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rocketzx1 View Post
    If you leave it stock gearing it’s decently fast in 2s, you could always put a 15t pinion on for a bit more speed for 2s. For myself, I run 3s cause I like to go fast with a 15t pinion, I channel my inner Ricky Bobby lol


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    I plan on running this thing with the optional gearing and hitting the 65mph as advertised. Momma, I'm going fast!

  11. #11
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    Also do I need a Y adaptor to plug both in?

  12. #12
    RC Racer GTSDart340's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    Can you recommend any that are good? anything that's a plug and play?
    I had the Traxxas fan on mine until it's broke. The fan itself pulled out. I fixed it once but then it came out again and got lost. Most people complain about broken fan blades. I also run the integy dual fan and heatsink. They definitely aren't the best, but they've outlasted my Traxxas fan. One of the blades broke, I ripped off the broken part and it's been working great since! I do need to replace my ESC fan. I'm not sure yet what I'm going to use.

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  13. #13
    RC Racer McCreary's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    Also do I need a Y adaptor to plug both in?
    The ESC fan will plug into the accessory plug on the ESC. The Integy I mentioned comes with a Y adapter.

  14. #14
    RC Champion Panther6834's Avatar
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    If running 3S, as pointed out by others, you NEED fans on ESC & motor. The Taxes fan for the ESC is perfect. As for the motor, selecting a fan isn't the real problem...the real problem can be in mounting fans. Best solution I've found for mounting a fan...ANY fan to ANY 36mm or 40mm can...is the Yeah Racing Aluminum Fan Mount (YA-0523BK for 36mm cans (such as Rustler motor), and YA-0569BK for larger 1/8-scale 40mm cans). Both mounts can accommodate 30mm, as well as 40mm, fans.

    Also, do NOT use the "self-righting" feature. Traxxas loves to tout this feature, but using it WILL DAMAGE YOUR VEHICLE. You can find several threads talking about this.

    As for other upgrade parts, I'll break them into two categories - those to start with, and those to have on-hand for when they're needed (although, some of these can also be good to start with, which I'll point out).

    Start with: The most important, as already pointed out, are the optional aluminum shock caps for the Ultra shocks, as plastic-on-plastic is a really BAD combo (the caps WILL pop off, immediately ending your fun. A better (albeit slightly more costly) alternate is to keep the plastic caps, but replace the shock bodies with the STRC Aluminum Ultra Shock Bodies, as actuation is much smoother than work plastic bodies.

    While the plastic hexes are more than 'good enough' when running 2S (and occasional 3S), since you'll be primarily running 3S, you'll want to replace them with aluminum hexes as quickly as possible. Standard aluminum hexes (the type that are held in place exclusively by the hex pin) would be good, but "clamping" hexes would be best. They are still held in the proper position by the hex pins...but, as they actually clamp into the stub axles, they have an even stronger 'hold', thus you'll have to worry less about stub axles snapping right where the hex pin is (I, and others, have had this happen before switching to clamping hexes).

    These are, IMO, the only "must have" upgrades from the start.

    On-Hand: You WILL want a better/stronger/faster servo. I'd recommend the 2075, or (even better) 2075X. Whereas the stock servo has plastic gears (which WILL strip), the 2075 & 2075X have metal gears. Quality going back to the shocks, you'll also (probably) want to replace the shock oil with higher weights (ESPECIALLY in the rear. I can remember if the factory oil is 30wt, or 35wt (all 4 shocks), but most are running 35-45wt in front, and 45-80wt in the rear. The actual weight will depend on the terrain you're running on. Both of these are also considerations to replace from the beginning.

    As for true "on-hand", if you crash a lot, I'd HIGHLY recommend having replacements for the front bumper, and A-arms (one pair should do it for now, as front & rear use the same A-arms). You'll probably also want to have replacement rear stub axle carriers, front caster & steering blocks...speaking of which, while the plastic versions of these last three are quite good, it's also highly recommended to consider the aluminum versions (much stronger, will last a lot longer, and will do a MUCH better job in regards to the bearings). At the same time, do NOT consider aluminum A-arms, as they are more "decorative" than "functional". You'll also be in-need of new tires soon enough (depending on how 'hard' you are on the stock tires). I'd recommend checking the Pro-Line Badlands 2.8 tires out. While the Trenchers are 'good', the Badlands are 'better'. If your want to save yourself from having to glue your tires & wheels, Pro-Line offers many options pre-glued.

    Future upgrades to (possibly) consider: Traxxas GTR shocks, alternate/more-powerful ESC and/or Motor (the Hobbywing EZrun motors are true plug-n-play with the Traxxas VXL ESC), titanium turnbuckles & hinge pins (MUCH stronger, and lighter, than the stock parts), alternate bodies (they're aren't many options for the Rustler (due to shorter wheelbase, when compared with the Slash), but there area a few, and more will (probably) be coming out), aluminum motor mount (King Headz recommended), aluminum motor plate (STRC recommended), CVD axles (either the Slash/Rustler 4x4 CVDs, or the 6mm XO-1 CVDs), beefier XO-1 front & rear differentials, upgraded Revo slipper (or, maybe, a center differential), increasing the weight in the front/rear differentials.

    Obviously, there are plenty of other upgrades that can be done, which you'll really find by reading other threads...but, those listed above area the most common, and (typically) the most recommended. Now...go have some fun.


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  15. #15
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    “ On-Hand: You WILL want a better/stronger/faster servo. I'd recommend the 2075, or (even better) 2075X. Whereas the stock servo has plastic gears (which WILL strip), the 2075 & 2075X have metal gears.”

    The Rustler VXL comes with the 2075 servo stock. The 2075X has metal gears where the 2075 has plastic gears. In my opinion the 2075 is slow and will be upgrading mine soon.

  16. #16
    RC Champion Panther6834's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Finz View Post
    The Rustler VXL comes with the 2075 servo stock. The 2075X has metal gears where the 2075 has plastic gears. In my opinion the 2075 is slow and will be upgrading mine soon.
    Yup...my bad (on the 2075)...but, that still means that the 2075X is STILL one of the best Traxxas options.


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  17. #17
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    Thanks for all the info so far! So the stock servo will have the plastic gears? definitely going to want to fix that I just got done replacing my Xmaxx servo gears after two runs because they stripped out.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    Thanks for all the info so far! So the stock servo will have the plastic gears? definitely going to want to fix that I just got done replacing my Xmaxx servo gears after two runs because they stripped out.
    It’s actually a fairly rugged servo along with its servo saver. I’ve bashed mine pretty hard...numerous cartwheels and nose dives and hasn’t broke yet. I just think it’s slow and don't have enough torque for the wheel size.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Finz View Post
    Itís actually a fairly rugged servo along with its servo saver. Iíve bashed mine pretty hard...numerous cartwheels and nose dives and hasnít broke yet. I just think itís slow and don't have enough torque for the wheel size.
    Keep in mind the already-gawd-awful-slow-ness is only aggravated, amplified, multiplied by having that "TSM junk" turned up or even simply turned "on". Also, incase u didnt already know, that TSM will A: wear the crud out of steering pivot points, as well as, take control of your truck, MID-FLIGHT, and totally ruin your day. Just a friendly heads up!

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  20. #20
    RC Qualifier Calebs0615's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    I plan on running this thing with the optional gearing and hitting the 65mph as advertised. Momma, I'm going fast!
    I wouldn't recommend doing this very often. Your going to want a temp gun for sure..

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  21. #21
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    Ohhh yeah it finally got here! Did some upgrades right away. Pink shock caps pink wheel nuts, and the Velineon cooling fan for the esc just waiting for the intent T8534silver motor heat sink and two cooling fans to get here.



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  22. #22
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    Looks great....time to get her dirty!

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Finz View Post
    Looks great....time to get her dirty!
    Where I live it would be get it snowy.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Finz View Post
    Looks great....time to get her dirty!
    Agreed it's way too clean!

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  25. #25
    RC Qualifier Calebs0615's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    Where I live it would be get it snowy.
    I wouldn't recommend driving it in snow over an inch. Maybe less. If its deep enough (with it being 4wd) the front tires throw a lot of snow underneath the body. When i drove my rustler in the snow it packed in under the body pretty tight. I noticed when the truck looked like it was dragging on the ground from all the weight of the heavy snow. It stopped my vxl fan on my esc for who knows how long, but it still works. It was on its way out before this and still works.

    But on the plus side after about a half hour of blowing snow and water out of it, once it dried it looked brand new again.

    Keep in mind the cold weather is hard on the plastic too. Stuff might be easier to break.

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  26. #26
    RC Racer McCreary's Avatar
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    After a 40min bash in 3"- 4" of wet/heavy snow with my Merv using Proline Big Joes II tires. It loves the snow.

    I thought I inserted the pic correctly. Apparently I don't know how.

    https://ibb.co/482f1rK
    Last edited by McCreary; 01-28-2021 at 09:48 AM.

  27. #27
    RC Qualifier Calebs0615's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by McCreary View Post
    After a 40min bash in 3"- 4" of wet/heavy snow with my Merv using Proline Big Joes II tires. It loves the snow.

    I thought I inserted the pic correctly. Apparently I don't know how.

    https://ibb.co/482f1rK
    I can see the picture. Looks like you had some fun. They go so good in the snow being 4wd. Was under the body packed with snow like mine was?

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  28. #28
    RC Racer McCreary's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Calebs0615 View Post
    I can see the picture. Looks like you had some fun. They go so good in the snow being 4wd. Was under the body packed with snow like mine was?

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    That's weird. I can't see the pic in my post. I don't recall there being much under the body. Just on the outside of the body, and the wheels were packed. That was taken a few years ago. We haven't had any snow in South Jersey the past couple winters, so I haven't been able to try it with my Rustler 4x4 yet. It was fun though. At times, you couldn't even see the car. It looked like a gopher digging a tunnel through the snow. My Jack Russells enjoyed chasing it. They love the snow too.

  29. #29
    RC Qualifier Calebs0615's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by McCreary View Post
    That's weird. I can't see the pic in my post. I don't recall there being much under the body. Just on the outside of the body, and the wheels were packed. That was taken a few years ago. We haven't had any snow in South Jersey the past couple winters, so I haven't been able to try it with my Rustler 4x4 yet. It was fun though. At times, you couldn't even see the car. It looked like a gopher digging a tunnel through the snow. My Jack Russells enjoyed chasing it. They love the snow too.
    Haha yes i did that with leaves this past fall. So funny. It just pushes through like you said a gopher lol.

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  30. #30
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    What temp do you want to keep the sevo and motor under?

  31. #31
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    I wouldnít want mine above the 160 temp. Hoping to keep it at the highest 140 to 150


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  32. #32
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    Thanks, i am new to the hobby so i'm just trying to get all the knowledge i can.

  33. #33
    RC Qualifier Calebs0615's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by metz2021 View Post
    What temp do you want to keep the sevo and motor under?
    I dont think you would feel any heat in your servo at all. Ive never heard of that.

    As for the motor i would let it cool off for like 10 minutes if you reach 160 or higher. Same with the esc. But in theory your esc shouldnt be hot if your motor isnt.

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  34. #34
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    Alright guys go easy on me I have a newbie question. So my esc and my integy cooling fans showed up however instead of a y harness to plug it all in it came with a harness that needs to be soldered inline is this the only way to do is piggy back one or the other or is there a different way?

  35. #35
    RC Champion Panther6834's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    Alright guys go easy on me I have a newbie question. So my esc and my integy cooling fans showed up however instead of a y harness to plug it all in it came with a harness that needs to be soldered inline is this the only way to do is piggy back one or the other or is there a different way?
    First, understand that the majority of Integy products are garbage...not worth even 1/4 what they charge. That being said, is the fan for the ESC, or motor?

    If for the ESC, most ESCs come with a fan...but, if yours didn't, you should be getting the fan made by the same manufacturer, for that ESC. The majority of ESCs have a mini power port specifically for the fan (of which, again, most ESCs come with). If yours didn't come with one (for example, Traxxas doesn't include ESC fans in their RTR vehicles), chances are fairly high that the manufacturer makes one for your ESC. And, if not, measure the distance between side holes, as you'll probably find it's either 30mm, or 40mm...the two most common sizes...and you'll want to get a fan that plugs into an unused port on the receiver (if the ESC didn't have a port for the fan).

    If for the motor, I'd first suggest returning that Integy garbage, and getting something of quality. Second, as with a non-manufacturer-specific fan for the ESC, I'd recommend looking at fans coming with a power connector that plus into an unused port on the receiver.

    If your vehicle has a 4-channel receiver, ports 3 and/or 4 can be used to power the ESC and/or motor fan(s).


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  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Panther6834 View Post
    First, understand that the majority of Integy products are garbage...not worth even 1/4 what they charge. That being said, is the fan for the ESC, or motor?

    If for the ESC, most ESCs come with a fan...but, if yours didn't, you should be getting the fan made by the same manufacturer, for that ESC. The majority of ESCs have a mini power port specifically for the fan (of which, again, most ESCs come with). If yours didn't come with one (for example, Traxxas doesn't include ESC fans in their RTR vehicles), chances are fairly high that the manufacturer makes one for your ESC. And, if not, measure the distance between side holes, as you'll probably find it's either 30mm, or 40mm...the two most common sizes...and you'll want to get a fan that plugs into an unused port on the receiver (if the ESC didn't have a port for the fan).

    If for the motor, I'd first suggest returning that Integy garbage, and getting something of quality. Second, as with a non-manufacturer-specific fan for the ESC, I'd recommend looking at fans coming with a power connector that plus into an unused port on the receiver.

    If your vehicle has a 4-channel receiver, ports 3 and/or 4 can be used to power the ESC and/or motor fan(s).


    ~ More peace, love, and kindness would make the world a much better place
    It is a fan for the motor, I already added a Traxxas esc fan so that plug is now taken.

  37. #37
    RC Champion Panther6834's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    It is a fan for the motor, I already added a Traxxas esc fan so that plug is now taken.
    Understood. Then, check your LHS, or online (Amain, Horizon Hobby, etc) for a good 30mm or 40mm fan work receiver power connector. Amain has quite a lot to select from. A setup I'd highly recommend is the Yeah Racing Aluminum fan mount, and one of their fans.


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  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by icumpd View Post
    Alright guys go easy on me I have a newbie question. So my esc and my integy cooling fans showed up however instead of a y harness to plug it all in it came with a harness that needs to be soldered inline is this the only way to do is piggy back one or the other or is there a different way?
    If it's the same fan I have, they send an extra plug. The fan itself should already have a plug. Just run it into the receiver box and plug it in as described. It's the red plug in the picture. Btw my integy fans have outlasted my Traxxas ESC fan! There's a couple screws missing but otherwise they've been great!

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  39. #39
    RC Qualifier Calebs0615's Avatar
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    You're incredibly lucky having integy fans lasting. I bought a single fan with a heatsink and it literally died the very first run. I still use the heatsink though.

    Ive been told to throw a yeahracing fan on there.

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  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Calebs0615 View Post
    You're incredibly lucky having integy fans lasting. I bought a single fan with a heatsink and it literally died the very first run. I still use the heatsink though.

    Ive been told to throw a yeahracing fan on there.

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    I'll do that eventually once these fans die. I run the car in grass, dirt, gravel, etc. One of the fan blades cracked and jammed against the housing several months ago. I ripped the blade off and it's been fine since. They're loud for sure, but I'm not too worried about being stealthy lol.

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