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Tamiya F104 driver steering Mod

The 2014 F1 race season started last week and it is looking like it could be an exciting year. In the meantime F1 in RC has been increas...

The 2014 F1 race season started last week and it is looking like it could be an exciting year.

In the meantime F1 in RC has been increasing in popularity along with all classes of RC on-road racing in general.

Here at The RC Racer we are big fans of this class and hope to have a few nice reviews and features soon. In the meantime, here is a fantastic mod to help make the F1 car look even more scale with a simple mod to make your F1 driver steer .. 

Check out this video for the inspiration


There is a lot of work involved to get something at this scale including some extra servos. So here is a solution to give your F1 a driver that steers with minimal extra weight, and maximum on track kudos.

The following solution will get your driver turning the steering wheel when you turn the car left and right
this mod will require some adjustments so where it says glue it, you are best to initially use blutack and test it first before gluing

Step 1

Cut out your F104 shell around the driver to release the arms and steering wheel.
Note: Be sure to cut away extra space so that the arms and steering wheel can rotate without catching on the body of the driver or car

Step 2

Find yourself a couple of eyelets (I used ones from one of my 1/8 scale buggies (the shock absorber bottom ends).
Use a knife to trim a slit in the bottom of one, and then glue it to the battery place holder as in the image.

Note: Take note of how high it sits as it needs to me in-line with the other eyelet we will install, and not up too high that it hits the body.

Step 3 (this step can all be glued together first go)

Get some differential gears from an old gear diff (1/8 gear diff used but others will be fine) and begin making the turning mechanism.
Glue the other plastic eyelet to a diff shim, but be careful with the glue you want the gear to be able to spin freely.
Now find a plastic ring washer and glue that to the gear, again being careful with the glue so the eyelet and the gear still spin independently

Step 4

Find a piece of plastic shaft and start to assemble the whole unit.
use corresponding spider gears from the Diff you used for the bevel gear.
Glue the gear at the front of the car to the pole, the other spider gear needs to spin freely but remain in place so I glued a shim behind it to the pole.

Step 5


Now we just need to fit it into the F104
Feed the shaft through the other eyelet, and put the steering wheel on just with blutack for now to test it.
Glue the plastic ring washer to the part of the servo that rotates, be careful again with the glue so not to get the shim stuck

Now test your invention as it may need some tweaking before you finally paint your drivers hands, arms and the steering wheel and glue it all together

Once your ready and happy with it glue the steering wheel to the shaft

Here is the final result



Thanks to Con Gamoto for the article

Here are some other F1 articles

http://www.thercracer.com/2009/12/3racing-f109-build-and-review.html
http://www.thercracer.com/2010/01/f1-led-light-tutorial.html
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