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Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934

Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934

Taking it to the Streets – Jägermeister-Style!

Back in 1976, Tamiya released their first RC model kit – the Vaillant Porsche 934. This kit was a huge success and vaulted Tamiya to the top rung of the ladder for super-scale, realistic RC models. I distinctly remember seeing this kit at the hobby shop and asking my dad for it for Christmas, but unfortunately that never happened. Now here I am, many years later, and I have Tamiya’s 40th Anniversary Porsche 934 sitting on my bench ready to be built and decked out in the famous Jägermeister livery. I’m excited to assemble this piece of Limited- Edition history, set’s get started!

Specifics
Product: Tamiya Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934 Jägermeister
Part #: 84431
Price: $229.99
Recommended For: Beginners to advanced drivers, and obviously Porsche lovers

Features
Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934Chassis
The chassis on the Porsche 934 is dual-deck design. It uses a flat piece of 2mm fiberglass that extends the length of the car, acting as the sturdy platform to mount the front and rear clips. All the screws holes are countersunk to reduce drag and a pair of chassis tabs at the rear protect the arm mounts and hinge pins. A 1.5mm top deck connects the front and rear bulkheads to form a nice, rigid structure.

If you’re using the supplied TBLE-02S ESC and a full-size servo, you’ll be a bit hard-pressed to find room on the chassis for the receiver. Don’t fret as Tamiya has designed the top deck wide enough to accept a variety of receivers.

The battery tray aligns your pack across the chassis, right in front of the motor and transmission. You can relocate the battery tray forward or back in a single 10mm increment, giving it a nice weight-bias tuning option. I found, though, that when I inserted a standard 2S LiPo pack (either a hard case and soft case) into the tray, I couldn’t use both of the battery tray end pieces; all the packs I had were too long. That left me with three options – stick with a NiMh (not happening), leave the battery tray end pieces off and use tape (possible solution) or just use a shorty pack. As you can see from the pictures, I went with option 3. I also think it looks pretty cool!

Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934Suspension
The Porsche uses a familiar Tamiya, 4-wheel independent suspension. Up front, you may notice that the front bulkhead has a noticeable amount of kickup. This basically replaces the caster and allows the car to flow better through bumps. Steel hingepins locks the heavy duty plastic parts into place and fixed-length links are used for camber. A fiberglass shock tower is connected to the bulkhead via an aluminum bracket and fluid-filled, plastic-bodied coilover shocks handle the damping.

The rear of the car is similar to the front; long steel hinge pins, beefy plastic parts and plastic-bodied, oil-filled shocks. There’s even a similar fiberglass tower and fixed-length camber links.

This car uses the TA02SW chassis with a wheelbase that is only 236mm long, giving this 1:10 scale Porsche a shorty look similar to its full-scale counterpart. Should you wish to use a different body, you can lengthen the wheelbase by flipping the rear arms over.

Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934Drivetrain
Unlike the real Porsche Turbo RSR 934, the Tamiya version sports a 4WD, shaft-driven drivetrain. A multi-gear transmission rolls on a full set of ball bearings, feeding power to a rear ball diff and a set of 3mm universal driveshafts out to the axles. Plastic, 12mm hexes key to the stunning 2-piece Porsche wheels and slick, rubber tires.

An offset output shaft hangs off the right side of the transmission, using a stainless steel prop-shaft to transfer power to the front end. A similar offset output shaft on the front transmission adds propulsion to the front tires via a fluid-filled gear diff and 3mm universal driveshafts.

This setup is definitely different than most 4WD platforms, but this allows Tamiya to run the motor in a standard position and keep the heavy components (battery, ESC, servo) mounted lower in the chassis.

Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934Steering
A bearing-equipped, dual-bellcrank steering system is used on this car and mounts on a pair of aluminum posts. The servo, in this case a Futaba S3050, attaches to the chassis via a pair of plastic mounts. An integrated servo horn/servo saver is mounted to the servo and protects it from damage. Threaded rods with plastic ball ends are used for the steering links and can be shortened or lengthened to adjust front toe.

This chassis can accept either a standard or shorty servo. If you do choose to use a shorty servo, you can mount the receiver on the lower deck right behind it.

Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934Electronics
Tamiya has included their TBLE-02S ESC and a Mabuchi brushed motor with this kit. It’s a great addition and helps keep your initial investment down. Both will provide adequate power if you’re looking to cruise around and protect the beautiful body, however it you’re ready to pump up the power, the TBLE-02S is also brushless compatible.

For steering, I chose to go with Futaba’s S3050, an inexpensive unit that has ball bearings, metal gears and a decent torque and speed rating (90oz/in and .16° respectively). This servo will work just fine for now; if I decide to get super competitive with this Porsche I may upgrade later.

I also chose Futaba for the radio system; my 4PX to be exact. Sure it’s a bit overkill for this build, but I really love this radio and all the features it has. I can fiddle with just about every setting right from the menu, making changes on the fly to adjust for track conditions. Definitely worth the extra money if you can afford it.

As for a battery, I’ve decided to go with a TrakPower 2S 4500mAh LiPo pack even though the Tamiya TBLE-02S ESC isn’t 100% LiPo compatible. By that I mean that the ESC will run on a LiPo pack, but it’s low-voltage (LVP) cutoff is set at 5.0V. Since LiPo’s require their LVP set at 6V, well, you can see the danger here. I’ll just have to pay close attention to run times while I’m out driving.

Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934Body and Bumpers
As you can see from the pictures, the Jägermeister Porsche is simply stunning. The detailing of the body didn’t take as long as some of the other Tamiya bodies I’ve done, but it still requires some tender care to get a killer end result, especially mated to the gold/chrome wheel set.

In addition, Tamiya has included their TLU-01 LED Light Unit to add headlights and taillights to the finished body. I wasn’t sure about adding them but figured why not – Tamiya included them, let’s run them!

Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934

Performance
Typically, a car like the Porsche Turbo RSR 934 would be at home on a track like the Nürburgring, but the biggest fear of wheeling this beauty around is wrecking that precious Limited Edition body! So, I opted for the safety of a local parking lot for the initial run.

Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934Speed and Braking
Some will say that the TBLE-02S ESC and brushed Mabuchi motor aren’t the type of power a 934 Turbo should possess – and they’d be right. The acceleration and top speed aren’t mind-blowing, but you have to remember that this is a Limited Edition Porsche and the fact that it comes with the ESC and motor already do help keep you initial costs down. For me, this Porsche is all about looking good, not necessarily going fast. It did hit speeds close to 25mph and, with the limited tire traction, this was plenty fast to look really cool!

Braking – well, it is 4WD and, since it’s not going all that fast, the brakes worked just fine. They were strong enough to bring the RSR to a quick stop from full speed without any drama; something you can’t say about a real RSR!

Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934Steering and Handling
There is definitely a sporty feel to this chassis, cornering well and leaning more and more the faster you go. The car feels very balanced and the rear never felt like it was going to let loose, even through a mid-throttle slalom course. Pinning the throttle coming out of corners, the inside rear wheel would sometime chirp from spinning; you can thank the stock tires for that.

Speaking of the tires, I think they’re a good match for the RSR in stock form. They have plenty of grip for high-spirited cornering, but add any more power and I think you’ll be over-working them big time. I think Tamiya added these as a solution to wrap around the beautiful wheels than for a full-on performance measure.

Durability and Maintenance
Having driven (and raced) a TA-02 in the past, I can tell you that these cars work great and hold up well. Unless you hit a barrier at full speed or try to recreate any jump scene from the Dukes of Hazzard, I don’t think you’re going to have many issues with this car.

I can, however, suggest a few things to keep up on as far as maintenance. First, make sure any rotating parts stay lubed, especially the gears and driveshaft. Keep an eye on the dogbones as well to make sure they aren’t wearing in the outdrive cups. This is especially critical if you decide to up the potential of the Porsche – more power means more wear.

Review: Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934Tuning
The TA-02 chassis has been around awhile, having many years of both street and track use. Lots of drivers have spent countless hours tuning this platform to extract as much performance as possible – a good thing for us. On top of that, Tamiya has supported it with lots of aftermarket goodies from aluminum to carbon fiber. There’s also a huge following from other aftermarket companies, so filling your ride with performance parts is not an issue. That being said, the TA-02 has some major tuning potential.

Now, that’s the good news. The bad news is that the first thing you’re going to want to work out is the tire situation. Because the tires aren’t a ‘standard’ tire size, finding performance replacements to fit the stock wheels is just not going to happen. You can bolt on a set of race tires (and wheels), but then you loose that ooooh-aaaah factor simply because they don’t match the body. You could replace the body as well but … well, you see where I’m going with this.

Keep the Porsche as is. Drive the Porsche as is. Love the Porsche as is. If you want a race car, buy a race car. This RSR is all about the looks!

Additional

Items Needed
• Servo
• Radio system
• Battery
Items Used
Futaba S3050 Steering Servo
• Futaba 4PX Radio System
TrakPower 2S 4500mAh LiPo Battery

Spec Data

General
Scale: 1:10
Power Source: Electric
Length: 17.1″ (435mm)
Width: 7.9″ (202mm)
Height: 5.1″ (130mm)
Wheelbase: 9.3″ (236mm)
Weight: 2.9lbs (1.32kg)

Chassis
Type: Short wheelbase dual-deck
Thickness: 2mm chassis, 1.5mm top deck
Material: Fiberglass

 
Suspension
Type: 4-wheel independent
Camber: Fixed
Roll: (F) Tower mount points, (R) Fixed
Wheelbase: (F) Inner shims (R) “Flippable” rear arms
Shocks: Coilover with pre-load clips
Steering
Steering: Dual bellcrank
Turnbuckles: Threaded rod
 
Drivetrain
Type: 4WD
Transmission: Multi-gear rear gearbox
Clutch: None
Differentials: (F) Gear diff, (R) Ball diff
Bearings: Precision sealed
Gearing: Mod .6, optional pinion gears
Body, Wheels, Tires
Body: Clear Lexan Porsche Turbo RSR with lights
Wing: Clear Lexan
Wheels: Two-piece plastic
Wheel hex: 12mm hex
Tires: Licensed Rubber 64mm slicks
 
Pros
• Stunning 40th Anniversary Porsche 934 body set
• Equally stunning wheels
• Based on the proven TA-02SW short wheelbase chassis
• Aluminum heatsink motor mount
• CC-01 universal driveshafts
• Full ball bearings
• Unique, offset 4WD prop-shaft drive system
• Tuneable diffs; gear up front, ball out back
• FRP shock towers, upper and lower decks
• TBLS-02S ESC and Mabuchi motor included
Cons
• Tires don’t offer much performance
• Can’t fit a standard LiPo battery

Conclusion
The Tamiya Limited Edition Porsche Turbo RSR Type 934 is a solid little ride. It’s an easy build, has just enough speed to be fun and looks amaze-balls! My biggest complaint is that it’s a Limited Edition kit – once they’re gone, they’re gone. The good news, though, is that it is based on the TA-02 SW chassis, a platform that is readily available. This at least gets you started on a custom build, but you’ll have to source the body, wheels, tires and sticker set separately. Either way, this car is great for any enthusiast who’s more interested in its stunning looks than its actual super-car performance.

Features – 8.5
Appearance – 10
Performance – Speed & Braking – 7
Performance – Steering & Handling – 8.5
Performance – Durability & Maintenance – 9.5
Performance – Tuning – 9.5
Overall Value – 8.5

Connect
Tamiya, www.TamiyaUSA.com
Futaba, www.Futaba-RC.com
TrakPower, www.TrakPowerUSA.com

Gallery




About Tony Phalen

Tony Phalen - As an avid RC enthusiast, Tony has been building, bashing and racing RC Cars for over 25 years. He has raced everything from 1:18th scale trucks to 1:5 scale motorcycles and everything in-between. He's also worked on both sides of the industry fence; working at and with many major manufacturers (as well as being a sponsored driver) to working for a high-profile industry magazine. During this time he has learned many tricks, tips and techniques and has transferred that knowledge to CompetitionX - the most informative RC website on the internet! More articles by Tony Phalen

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