I started racing 1/8th Nitro Late Model a few years back at a local club. They have a pretty racer friendly set of rules, which limits racers to basically buggy based cars with no fancy offset chassis allowed, and such.
When I got started in Late Model in 2011/2012 I built an RC8 based car and did very well with it. I then sold that car (which I later regretted lol) and brought a Losi L8ight car which was pretty good. But as I had a relationship with Kyosho and they had also recently launched the GT3, I figured a fun project would be to build a Late Model using spare MP9 parts and the Towers, Shocks and bumpers from the GT3.
So this blog post will briefly describe the build process and parts used, with pictures of the car before I ran it.
So I mounted up my trust C&M Atomic from last year. You can see I had to use slightly different mounting holes, but no big deal.
So here is an top view of the car. The component most will likely see first, is the extension at the rear for the body mount.
This was custom made from a plastic material from McMaster Carr, made by a close friend and machinist Mark Stern. It screws into the rear tower thru stock holes and allows me to mount my body safely on the rear shelf of the body. Ideally I need to install a rear bumper on the car, but I didn’t get to that yet.
Close up of rear mount:
Below you can see the front end of the car. Front Tower from the GT3 car, as are the shocks and bumpers.
I’m using an STRR Truggy Tank. Trying to race 5mins at full throttle, on a buggy tank, without overheating, is close to impossible. Our rules allow for a truggy tank. 150ml verses 125ml.
It almost drops in, but does require the Tank mounts and custom holes drilled in the chassis, shown in the next pic. Looks pretty ‘factory’ though:
You can see the holes drilled for the tank, just to move it out a little from the center diff and front brace.
I installed the recently released 4-degree Alum Kyosho Caster blocks, again from the GT3 car.
The rear chassis brace is from an MP9. The brace mount (close to the tower) is also from the MP9. The GT3 car comes with the different top/rear brace mount, but as the MP9 chassis is shorter than the GT3, you have to use the MP9 mount.
I’m using the same RC4LESS Spring set for LOSI on all 4 shocks.
Everything else is pretty much stock MP9.
The Protek LS5 motor is a variant of the awesome/reliable/economic Novarossi P5 motor. A-main occasionally do promotions and I picked up this motor for $150, perfect for Late Model.
This was a Youtube video of me driving the car on its first outing. Wasn’t really a ton of competition but car was very good Late Model Race at Dirtrunners, NJ.
I will post a full setup sheet shortly. Diff oils were 100/50/10. Shocks I believe I ran 40/40.
Part numbers for specific parts:
IGW061 Alum 4 degree Caster Blocks
IG152 Front Body Mounts
IG153 Bumper Set
IG155 Rear Body Mount
IG158 Threaded Shocks (complete pair)
IS051B 150cc Tank STRR
IG157 Rear Tower
IG156 Front Tower
LOSI8 RC4LESS Soft Spring Set (7 pair)