How to Build a Cheap Brushless RC Car

Written by matthew cote
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How to Build a Cheap Brushless RC Car
Brushless systems have gained immense popularity in recent years. (rc-modellauto image by andreas from

Many radio control enthusiasts consider brushless systems to be the future. Requiring very little maintenance, brushless systems are more durable than their brushed counterparts; however, many of the available brushless options are considerably more expensive. Learn how you can build your own brushless RC car on a tight budget, and enjoy the benefits of improved power without emptying your wallet.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • RC chassis kit (unassembled)
  • Double-sided tape
  • RC radio system kit (with transmitter, receiver and servo)
  • Brushless system (including brushless motor and electronic speed control)
  • Solder iron
  • Spool of solder
  • 7.2 volt battery pack

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  1. 1

    Assemble the vehicle chassis according to the instruction manual. The chassis is the frame of the car, and it doesn't have any of the electronic components necessary for driving.

  2. 2

    Connect the receiver by sticking a 1-inch section of double-sided tape to the back of the receiver box, then peel off the other side of the tape, and press the device firmly to the chassis.

  3. 3

    Plug in the servo to the first channel of the receiver, then follow the instructions with your kit to install it on your chassis. Use the servo mounts that came with your kit, then connect the servo arm to the steering mechanism of the car with the included servo horn. The servo horn connects the rotating servo arm to the mechanical steering rods within the chassis.

  4. 4

    Connect the ESC to the chassis by sticking a 1-inch section of double-sided tape to the back of it. Peel off the other side of the tape, then press the device firmly onto a preselected location on the chassis. The ESC is responsible for applying forward and reverse throttle. You don't need to worry about any interference from this device, so install it in a convenient location.

  5. 5

    Connect the ESC to the receiver's second channel input. Insert the brushless motor into the motor housing located at the back of the chassis. Follow your kit's specific instructions for proper installation. Slide the pinion gear onto the motor shaft, then tighten the fastener bolt with a hex wrench. Insert the brushless motor into the motor housing, then secure it with two motor mounting screws -- but don't tighten them all the way just yet.

  6. 6

    Place a sheet of paper between the pinion gear on the motor shaft and the spur gear, which delivers the motor's energy to the drivetrain. Squeeze the sheet of paper between the gear teeth, then tighten the motor mounting screws to secure the motor in place. Pull the sheet of paper from between the gears. This technique will ensure the perfect functional gap between the teeth, which offers a nice, smooth ride.

  7. 7

    Solder the two motor wires leading from the ESC to the two connection tabs on the brushless motor. Hold the wire's end to the tab on the motor with the tip of the solder iron, then apply enough solder to establish a good connection. Use about a centimetre's length of solder from your spool for each tab.

  8. 8

    Connect a fully charged 7.2 volt battery pack to the ESC. Turn on the ESC, and trim your vehicle's steering alignment using the steering trim knob on the transmitter. Adjust the throttle trim to establish an idle setting for the car; if your vehicle rolls forward by itself, turn the know counterclockwise until it stops moving; turn it clockwise to compensate for reverse idle.

  9. 9

    Drive your brushless RC car.

Tips and warnings

  • Choose a low-end 2-channel transmitter, servo, and receiver package unit. The cheapest options are the all-inclusive kits, meaning that it has everything you need to control the vehicle, once a battery is connected.
  • When installing the receiver, find a location on the chassis that is farthest away from the back area (where the motor will be installed). This will limit any radio interference while driving

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