Tamiya TC-01 championship winning car, tips and setting sheet

The Tamiya TC-01 is an innovative design compared to the average onroad RC car. The chassis was designed to accommodate the Gen 2 Formula E body design, but to also be capable on the race track

The car has an efficient 4WD drivetrain which utilizes a full time shaft 4 wheel drive system with minimal friction when built properly

The most distinguishing feature is the fully inboard pushrod suspension to keep everything low profile

I managed to successfully win the 2022 King of clubs championship in the GT class using this chassis. This was a championship for Tamiya shaft drive cars with controlled electrics/ tyres to make the racing fair & competitive. There was also a focus on more realistic bodyshells.

So let's take a look at the championship winning chassis that was capable of going toe-to-toe against the excellent TT02-SR chassis and ultimately take the winners trophy.


This is a bath-tub style plastic chassis. It is made from glass re-enforced plastic, and requires quite a lot of screws to assemble. As you would expect this would be quite heavy when assembled.  This was always going to be one of the weak spots for the car when racing against the much lighter TT02 cars that I would be competing against. 

I was able to reduce some weight using titanium screws from Moodyfools, I also added hex head titanium ball ends from T-works for strength & weight reduction

At round 1, the car tipped the scales at 1470g. The rules allowed a 1350g minimal weight limit. I ended up using a smaller battery to get it to 1325g & added 30g of ballast to bring it up to the correct weight

Tip: There have been some clearance issues between the front upper bulkhead & lower deck. There may be a gap which can allow the diff to move & cause damage. I filed the location tabs to drop it lower & prevent movement


I always like to use the best dampers where possible so they are working at their best. I opted for the TRF big bore plus dampers. I used the gold coated 502x shafts as the TC-01 uses longer shock shafts. I also added wind zero damper extenders for colour coding.

The aluminium rocker arms provide less flex than the plastic units to make the suspension work better

On the lower arms, I added the titanium suspension pins with the aluminium holders for weight reduction & rigidity. Behind the lower arms, you need to fit shims for camber adjustment. The kit supplied shims are different tolerances & require complete suspension removal to adjust. I used the Tamiya shim set (0.2&0.3mm) T-works shim set (0.5mm) to make Camber adjustments. Toe was taken care of using turnbuckles so these shims didn't need to be offset

Note: Due to plastic tolerances, you may need to use different shims left/right. Some trial & error is required to get the right alignment


I used the aluminium arms & bridge to provide a firmer steering feel. I used 15mm turnbuckles on the steering arms so I could make easier toe adjustments. The main steering rod is a titanium unit from T-works. Everything I used made the steering more efficient & gave a more positive feel


The transmission was a critical area that could provide a lack of speed if not built properly.

The motor mount is the T-works unit. It comes with the optional braces that make the front & chassis stiffer. I actually removed them to generate more flex that gave more traction. Coupled with the hardened spur gear holder, there was minimal flex to make sure the bearings sit as straight as possible

The internal ratio is 2.5. This is high compared to most cars. I ended up using a 72t spur gear with a 60t pinion to end up with F.D.R of 3.0. I used 64dp as I already have pinion gears from 18-60t

The propeller shafts were upgraded to the double cardan units as they also reduced the friction when using the supplied dog bones

The same was implemented on the drive shafts. The 39mm units were used all round due to the aluminium outdrives on the diffs. 42mm will bind the transmission/suspension with those outdrives. Double cardan was fitted on the front to reduce chatter

The diffs needed a little work. Although the plastic internal gears would have less friction, I have seen these fail quickly in the TB-04 (where these diffs come from) . I fitted the metal internal gears & pins to make the car reliable. Once shimmed correctly, they were very strong with not too much friction. The aforementioned aluminium outdrives were fitted for less weight & allowed blades to be fitted

I fitted a spool to the front for better power delivery. I tested a front diff with heavier oil, but preferred the spool


The championship mandated control electrics. The esc was the Hobbywing Justock 60a & G2 17.5t fixed timing motor. These are set to blinky with no way of adding timing or boost. You can adjust the punch rate & brakes, but nothing else. In the car, the supplied fan won't fit, so had to be removed.

Tip: When the car is built, there is no way to plug the program card in to make adjustments unless you strip the front end. I added a jumper harness that allowed adjustments

I added a 40mm fan on a clamp as there was no space to fit one on the chassis. 

I used a Sanwa RX482 receiver due to its small size. Steering was taken care of by a SRT BH8015 unit

As mentioned earlier, the car was very heavy using a normal size 2s 6300mah lipo

I managed to source a 4400mah shorty low profile that lost over 100g in weight. This was on the limit for stock power as I was taking out 1900mah per run. Any more than 1900mah, I would lose voltage over the run. Some 3d printed holders were used to secure them in the chassis. A piece of foam tape stopped them bouncing around in the tray


These were another control part that made the class closer together in terms of racing. 

These were the Ride 2022 BRCA frontie pre built wheels/tyres supplied exclusively through MB models. You could also use the older sets with the chrome wheels

These tyres were treaded so didn't supply a massive amount of grip. No tyre warmers or additives were allowed to be used. The tyres took a few minutes in to a run for the grip to start coming up. As the tyre wore, the longer it would take for them to warm up. It was the same for everyone, so it was fair & close racing


The main focus of this class was to introduce more realistic bodyshells, no 4 door touring car shells allowed. I used 3 different shells as they all have different handling characteristics

1. Tamiya NSX 2005
My favourite shell that I used in the iconic cup. A very balanced shell that is very stable, but not much steering. I always put this on to start & would change shells later. I also used this in the rain so the car remained predicable.

2. Montech Akura GT3
Looks very similar to the Acura NSX. This ended up being the most popular shell of the championship. This is a short shell that gave loads of steering & rotation. I found it worked well at Colchester, but struggled everywhere else

3. Bittydesign Seven20
This shell is longer than the GT3. It had more steering than the NSX. This was a mix between the 2 shells but required a smooth driving style to get the most out of it

Wet car

For any outdoor racing season in the UK, I like to have a separate wet car. You may able to quickly waterproof your dry car before the run, but I like to have a separate car to avoid any rushing & can avoid issues if prepped beforehand

My wet car was similar to the dry car, but used less hop ups as they weren't necessary in the rain. I used a mix of electrolaquer on the circuit board of the esc & plastidip around the joints. I also covered any electrical joints with plastidip. On the day, I sprayed all the electrics with corrosion X as another preventative measure

I also use a diff in the front as it makes the car easier to drive in the wet using the BRCA grooved wet tyres

Setting sheet.

Below is the final set-up. This is a great all round starting set-up for the chassis.


The Tamiya TC-01 was an unconventional choice for the championship. As you would expect, the rest of the field consisted of the more obvious TT-02-SR chassis. With no real racing information on the TC-01 available, I was really curious about how it would perform in a competitive club racing scenario. There were definitely some nay-sayers when I started off. but I was able to prove them wrong & get the car to the sharp end of the field

Yes this car has pretty much every hop up available (note: roll bars weren't allowed for this championship), although not everything is required. I initially built this as a lockdown project, but ended up being an excellent racing chassis

Next step

I've now refitted the Formula E bodyset & bumpers. I'm going to try using this car with some race tyres & see how it performs

Tip: The 40mm fan I fitted will not allow the Formula E shell to fit. I drilled 2 holes on the side of the chassis & secured a 30mm fan using some screws & nuts. This now sits over the shell & hopefully will allow sufficient cooling

Thanks to 
TC01 3636754553565425388

Post a Comment

  1. Thanks for the great follow-up as it was very informative and detailed. I will be using the some of the tips on my TC-01 build. Just wondering if the TT-02SR cars had a hard time keeping up or were they in contention each time you raced them? Please keep us informed on your results and mods when you race in the Formula E body.

  2. The TT-02SR cars were very quick. The battle for each race was between those and this solitary TC-01.

  3. Fantastic. That chassis evokes memories of the off road predator. Love the series too, though in some respects wish they had mandated any she'll in the class, but only in the Tamiya range. The scale detail would have added the cherry on top.



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