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About Horses and Buggies - Hobby Letter #11/22

4.8.2022

Hello and whats up! Heikki here from the Storage Room lurking behind the shelves full of holy RC goodness. It has been a sweaty summer for us and my personal thanks to everyone who is keeping us busy here! You folks rule!

As funny as it may sound, the classic Off-Road Buggies are indeed living a new renaissance. Many new kits sell out pretty fast and classic Tamiya nostalgia kits seem to be soft spot for many older hobbyist.

To celebrate this, I'll "do the Tamiya" and re-release one of our articles from last year. Please read on to learn more about why is it that we call our buggies the way we do! This article was originally released in Hobby Letter # 14/21.

Ooh before we go.. Rumor has that there is a bunch of long-awaited new (!) Tamiya models finally arriving to our shop soon.. Keep close eye on our shop and follow these letters!

Everything was better back then but modern nitro powered RC buggy has easily output of almost 3 hp..

Antique, antique!

I used to connect the word buggy to the Volkswagen Beetle. They are called bugs and especially the Dune Buggy and Baja versions from the 60-70's resemble a lot of a real life little insects. I simply never questioned if my story is valid.

It is not too far from the truth as a beetle is indeed a type of insect but the word buggy is way way older than mass produced cute civilian car from the late 30's. Where is this word coming from? Well - no one who is alive really knows. It has been used for centuries to describe horse drawn carriage more specifically smaller, two seated and bit sportier versions of said vehicles. Horse and buggy.

Maybe it resembled some kind of a fly type of bug that was following horse from close behind and it earned its name there! Also the word roadster is rooting from the same moldy ages meaning the type of horse buggy that could make longer journeys.

Kyosho "Baja Bug" is fine example of early day RC buggy. This rare model has air filled tires and centrifugal clutch! (Image: EuroRC Museum)

Holiday at the Dunes

From our point of view, this following is the era where it all started. Old and busted Beetles offered excellent starting point for all kind of fun builds. It had simple air cooled engine, versatile platform with single chassis plate meaning that you could change the body for whatever and being popular model the spare parts were easy to access.

First to remember is the iconic dune buggy glassfiber body kit "Manx" by Bruce F. Meyers from 1968 that offered an easy option to transform your old rusty VW bug into something cool. People got wild of this new idea that you could have a car for "just for fun" or for "recreational use".

Traxxas Sledge is fine example of how far we are from hay days of RC Off-Road Racing.

For leisure drivers like us today this is business as usual but back in the days this idea was revolutionary. Radio Controlled Cars are very much in the meaning of the name - leisure vehicles!

Meyers Manx kit was bit on the pricey side but it popularized the customization of the original bug body. Chop said the beetle when people cut the fenders away to fit bigger rear tires and better suspensions.

Everyone remembers the legendary look of Baja 1000's racing bugs whose spirit is excellently captured in to Tamiya Sand Scorcher Kit for you to build.

Immortal buggy legend from Tamiya - Fighting Buggy - was originally released 1982 with name Super Champ

RC Buggies for Everyone!

Today we have a wide range of leisure vehicles available. Sometimes the biggest fun come in smaller packages. Thanks to legacy of Beetles in Baja-races the name buggy was adapted to very first of RC kits that started to get popular at the same era.

Today we have a plenty of RC buggies for everyone to smash! Big ones, small ones, 2WD, 4WD, bashers, racers.. From our simple point of view, buggy is just a type of RC car that is meant for offroad racing and has "wheels exposed" because in true racing fenders and other unnessecarities are just extra weight.

This type of setup suits very well for competitive RC cars. For me it is somehow funny to think that some countryside folks hundreds of years ago started joking about bugs buzzing around horses "rear side" and the legacy of this joke carries this far!

Buzzin' Around

Yeah, we've come a long way, babe! When it comes to fast paced off-road racing, modern style Buggy platform has evaluated to the point that it can hardly be any better. Yet some innovative companies such as Team Xray keep kicking the goalposts and somehow refine their models better and faster every year. Check out the features of latest Xray XB4'22 to catch my point.

Classic off-road racing may suffer a bit from the saturation of the hobby these days (bashers, crawlers..) but I think that every serious RC-hobbyist should always have a good racing buggy in their shelf - for true racing they are the best you can get!

Keep you Bug Spray in hand, Thanks for reading!

Heikki / EuroRC

ps. Keep those pictures coming folks, everything RC related welcome, just reply in this mail and attach some of your best shots!

Our friend Quintin just greeted us with this wonderful shot of their Backyard Track that should give you some perspective. Thank you Quintin, the layout looks excellent and pretty fast!

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If you feel that your product is defective please send us a email and we will let you know what to do next. Most items do not have a warranty as they will break in normal usage. For example if you hit something solid or take a larger tumble. Properly used items should easily last 3-12 months and during this period we are able to replace broken items if they have a manufacturing or material fault. We have years of experience with different makes and they all have different warranty policies. We have chosen to work with brands that have a good understanding how to serve their customers and you can be assured that you will get the best customer experience possible with us.

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