Monday, December 28, 2015

Sakura D4: New Dampers, Aluminum Parts, New Gyro, and New Screws

I've really been enjoying the D4 so far, and the more I work with it, the more I like it. 3 Racing made a nice step forward over the D3 and now that factory upgrades are starting to filter through the pipeline, essential upgrades can be completed.



The first order of business is taking care of my main gripe with the stock chassis... steering wipers.

While it can slide nice with the stock plastic bits, there is a lot of flex in the wipers. I chose to use the 3 Racing factory aluminum steering to upgrade mine. The parts are nicely made, but do have one flaw. The wiper plates that screw to the bearing pivots have threading in the holes where the screws go through to fasten them to the pivots. The threads at those locations need to be drilled with a 3mm drill. Don't drill any of the other threaded holes, as they are all needed. Everything fits perfectly in place, and removes all flex from the steering.


I also upgraded to a D-Like premium gyro. It is money well spent. After battling with gyros that drift off center and behave erratically, this thing is a godsend. The smoothness + control is noticeable, and rock solid.



The next upgrade is in the dampers department. I chose to try some new M's pistons, shafts, and lower seals, along with some TRF main bodies for this build.


These parts are very nice, but be warned that many of the components are very small, and there are some very thin shims that are used to make it all work well. Assembly and setup can be a little tedious, but the end result is worth the effort.

I went with the 3-hole 1.0mm pistons, and the +2mm shafts. A little more droop never hurts. Ultimately I ended up drilling the rear shock pistons out to 1.15mm and used 10wt oil. The fronts stayed at 1.0mm and I used 30wt oil for them. A TRF foam insert was used over the front bladders but not in the rear, to promote weight transfer to the rear.


The end result is an incredibly smooth damper with almost zero stiction. I am really happy with these things, and the improved control is noticeable.

Sticking with the silver/black theme that this chassis has going, I decided to replace all the factory fasteners with stainless screws. Nobody makes a kit that I have found, so I put together one for myself. I definitely like the look.

Currently, the car is driving fantastic. It has a reasonably wide speed envelope, has great off throttle control, transitions smoothly, and can be driven easily to adjust line. All great characteristics IMHO, but I still keep working to improve it. Future upgrades include aluminum suspension mounting blocks along with some aluminum rear suspension arms. I also have the upcoming Usukani gear drive conversion, front bulkhead, and rear lower roll center mounts on order. They should be released very soon. Expect a detailed overview once they arrive.

Some chassis shots in the current state of tune:










20 comments:

  1. Sweet work man. I'm digging your setup. M's are my favorite dampers hands down.

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    1. Thanks, man. I tried the M's on your recommendation. Just ordered the stuff to do my TT02 FRD and a future Yok DP build...

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    2. I picked up some M's pistons for my TRFs and the sticktion was pretty significant....so much so that I removed them in favor of the original pistons. Did either of you noticed this? The o-ring around the piston really hindered smooth movement. I had it lightly oiled when I test fit it, but don't recall even bothering filling it with oil because it was so discouraging.

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    3. That seems odd. I never tried mine without oil, so I couldn't tell you what they feel like that way. Did you use the shims that were included to keep the piston from rocking? Also, you did get the TRF pistons and not the Yokomos?

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    4. Oops! Didn't know you'd responded. :) Yeah, I started with box stock TRF dampers. Maybe I'll try them again and proceed to add oil to see if that improves things. The M's pistons are designed for a standard bore TRF body, aren't they?

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    5. Yes, that is what I was using.

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  2. Now that you have used both the chassis im considering on purchasing, which one would you prefer between the EA TT02 FRD or the Sakura D4, now i use to rc drift a long time ago, and when the first ta05 came out and 3racing was the initial company with hop ups, so consider me kind of new to the game... Which one would you recommend ?? And why ??

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    1. Tough question! Honestly I don't think you could go wrong with either. I love my FRD, and it has been my best chassis for a good while. However, as I am developing the D4 it is starting to exceed the TT02 FRD. I think that spending more time with the FRD will get it better though. But if I could only have one, it would be the D4. While the FRD comes fully hopped up, other than gearing or shocks there are not a lot of options. The D4 works well, even bone stock, and there is a wealth of upgrades out there that allow you to configure the layout however you want. The aftermarket has really embraced the D4 and I think there is more to come. It is a chassis you can grow into and it is not bad completely stock.

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  3. Hi , i have a D4 whit KPI Usukani mod but i need the usukani lower arms too can you plis tell me where i can fine those lower arms ?

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    1. If you go to the Usukani FB page, they have a list of the worldwide dealers. https://www.facebook.com/usukani/?fref=ts

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    2. thanks and whis one you use ? i see 2 sizes the 2.5mm and the 3.0mm , whis one you recomended for the D4

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  4. Do u have a list of all your current mods anywhere?

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  5. What's that spur holder? The build looks good.

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    1. Thank you. The spur holder is a custom machined part that I designed. I believe the M's weighted set would work in the same way though.

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  6. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  7. Hello.
    I was going to get Usukani knuckle for d4 rwd and could you share part number for it? Also did you try brake disc on it? I was looking at 3racing one and wondering if it will work with usukani. Thank you.

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    1. The part number for the Usukani knuckle I am using is US88083-S. I am using the brake disk but without the caliper.

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