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Gelande II D110 Review

Off-road Excursion Awesomeness!
Photos Edwin Rodriguez

This article was originally published in RC Driver’s November 2015 issue.

Review-Gelande-II--D110

As off-road RC trail truck driving increases in popularity, the demand for vehicle body styles increases and RC4WD has been offering up lots of scale goodness. It seems just a short while back when we reviewed the RC4WD Trail Finder II and the Gelande II Cruiser and now we’ve got our trail truck hoarding hands on one of their newest releases, the Gelande II D110. RC4WD has certainly assembled an amazing chassis with nearly all metal components between the bumpers, each with scale looks, but the big show is the body and for those looking to rock a four-door D110 style truck on the trails now have a perfect out of the box option.

AT A GLANCE
WHO MAKES IT: RC4WD
WHO IT’S FOR: Any kit build- ing RC enthusiast
PART NUMBER:  Z-K0047
HOW MUCH: $599.99
BUILD TYPE: Kit

PROS
• Awesome Factory Custom Made D110 Style Body
• Cast metal transmission and axle casings
• Well packaged kit and easy to build
• Beadlock steelies
• Mostly metal chassis and suspension components
• Some major componentsv preassembled from the factory
• Long link suspension handles well

CONS
• Spare tire not included
• Includes interior but for a   D90 and requires custom  work to fit in the D110

REVIEWER’S OPINION
Building an RC4WD kit is a pretty cool experience. The kit is well packaged and some items like transmission and axles are assembled with all components sporting realistic looks. Then you get to top the trail rig off with a well detailed scale body and hit the terrain with style and great performance.

TOOLS AND ACCESSORIES INCLUDED
• Manual

ITEMS NEEDED
•  Radio System, Battery, Servo, ESC and Motor, Charger, Tools, Shock Oil, Paint

ITEMS USED
Tactic TTX300 Radio- The Tactic TTX300, TACJ0300– is a basic 3-channel system that is perfect for a scale machine since its mating receiver doesn’t having an antenna that needs to poke through the body. It has a great feel and its third channel ability is great for operating an additional accessory.

• Yeah Racing Brushed Tritronic ESC & Hakimoto 45T Motor Combo; CB0815 – YR’s Tritronic ESC is a super simple, brushed motor ESC that allows you to change its throttle or battery programming by swapping simple plugs on the top face of the controller. It has a nice, smooth, throttle response and had good brake control when coupled with the Hakimoto 45T motor.

 MaxAmps.com 5450mAh LiPo battery- MaxAmps.com has a battery for just about every application imaginable and their popular 5450mAh pack provided tons of run time in the D110 and plenty of power to help the truck motor over lots of difficult obstacles.

ADDITIONAL ITEMS USED
• Savox SW-0230MG Servo
• EMS Servo Extension
• Tamiya TS Spray Paint

HOP-UPS WE RECOMMEND
5 Lug Wagon 1.9 Steel Stamped Beadlock Wheels (Black) (Z-W0129), Dirt Grabber 1.9” All Terrain Tires (Z-T0005); Sorry, the bare peg on the back door of the D110 is screaming for the spare tire. Get it when you get the kit or it may bother you, too, that it’s not included with the kit.

• Gelande 2 Steering Guard (Z-S0824); A little extra protection for the steering can never hurt and this nicely machined guard protects the critical front links.

• XVD Axle for Ultimate Scale Yota II G2 Axle (Z-S0823)– The XVD axles replace the bone-end/cup style axles up front for smooth chatter-free operation.

FEATURE BREAKDOWN
The Gellande II D110 has a long wheelbase, so long aluminum frame rails come tucked away in RC4WD’s classy packaging. The rails are beautifully machined with all holes perfectly cut and threaded, ready for assembly. Cross-bars and braces connect the two rails and make for an ultra rigid frame. Plates to secure the ESC and the battery bolt to the rails and a faux fuel tank in the rear serves as the receiver box. Aluminum posts extend from each side frame to secure the body with screws rather than body posts and clips which take away from the scale look. The assembly of the chassis does take a little time so make certain you use the right screws in the right spaces, but everything in the manual is well detailed and the fit of the components is perfect.

The suspension is made up of a series of links as you would expect on a trail rated machine. The front uses a 3-link with pan-hard bar and there is a 4-link set-up in the rear. The link rods are machined aluminum with varying rod ends to suit the angles to their mounting points. With the longer wheelbase, the rear links are much longer than the front. Oil filled, dual coil-over shocks provide damping and are mounted to aluminum shock towers front and rear.

The steering is simple on the Gelande II as it should be with the steering servo securely mounted to the frame. A link extends to the steering knuckle and a BTA link mates up the two knuckles for throw. The links are aluminum and the BTA link features some fancy bendwork to clear the axle housing.

A pretty impressive driveline with lots of scale cues fills up the D110’s underbody. Starting at the forward mounted transmission, the motor mounts on an aluminum mount towards the front for more weight over the front wheels. The R3 transmission features a cast aluminum case with single speed steel internal gears. The tranny mates up to the hammer transfer case via a chrome steel coupler. The hammer case is cast aluminum, too, with steel internal gears and of course everything rides on ball bearings. A shaft extension at the rear is supported by a bearing carrier before a telescoping driveshaft sends power to the Yota II axle. The same set-up drives the front end. The rear axle, however, is a straight shaft set-up while the front end has the case aluminum pivoting steering knuckles with a bone-end-in-cup style axle. The stub axles have drive-pins that mate up with the wheel hub bolted to the wheel. RC4WD does include 12mm hexes with the kit in case you plan on installing optional wheels.

The big attraction here is the D110 style body and it’s pretty interesting how it comes. Basically the RC4WD factory took a D90, chopped it up, gave it an additional set of doors, glued, puttied, sanded and primed it for you to turn it into the D110. If you flip the body over you can see all of the glue and bracing they did during the customizing process. The body comes finished well and mine only needed a few tweaks to the finish if I was going for that perfect finish, but I built my D110 to drive hard. Lots of detail items are included to finish the scale looks like a chrome grille, headlight bezels, door handles and hood vents which I painted black on my kit. Speaking of paint, I used Tamiya paint to finish off the D110 you see here. I had a slight issue with a streak of humidity during my build, but the blue with white top and black fender flares came out nice enough to rub on the rocks later. Windows and lights are included to glue into the body and RC4WD includes an interior, too. However, the interior is the D90 interior and requires some chopping, cutting and gluing to get it to fit in the D110 so I left it out of my build for now. The dash and steering wheel did get bolted to the body before the body was bolted to the frame.

Let’s talk additional details. The front and rear bumpers are aluminum and bolt to the frame securely. On each corner is RC4WD’s dirt grabber tires sandwiched in their steel bead-lock wheels, which thankfully come preassembled from the factory. To finish the kit talk, let’s talk build. The build is fairly easy thanks to many parts like the axles, transmission, transfer case, shock, wheels and tires coming preassembled from the factory. Each of the bags of screws has their sizes labeled so you can easily match the hardware up to the manual. The truck minus the body only took a few hours to complete. The body, on the other hand, took two additional days with paintwork and drying time. As for the body manual, it’s a bit more basic but you should be able to work through it with just a few Google image searches to help answer any questions.

Review Gelande II D110-17  Review Gelande II D110-38

Review Gelande II D110-46

Review Gelande II D110-47

ON THE TRACK
When I reviewed the RC4WD Gelande II Cruiser, I received a letter in the mail with a critique saying that judging by the photos; I did not drive the truck hard enough for testing. Photos are often taken to show the vehicle off and do not necessarily show how hard we test a machine. Nonetheless, I don’t want to disappoint readers in any way, so we took the D110 to some sandy, rocky, hilly and plain old gnarly terrain for pictures and of course, testing, so enjoy the show.

The first challenge for the RC4WD Gelande II D110 was to navigate up through a washout area consisting of a variety of rocks, sand and dirt ledges. With just a little throttle input the rig slowly pulled itself up and over the uneven terrain. The close tread Dirtgrabber tires did spin on some of the smoother rock faces and I had to back off of a few larger rocks where all four wheels would spin and the long wheelbase truck would high-center, but for the most part, the truck didn’t have an issue and the look of sand and dirt churning up from the wheel as it conquered the terrain looked so cool and very scale.

The 45T Yeah Racing motor had plenty of speed for a scale look and the torque to help pull the D110 up over some dirt ledges and it even kept going when the wheels hung up and I could hear the slipper screaming for mercy. The truck looked so cool climbing up the loose sandy hills, dirt flinging off of the tires as the truck fought to go forward. On the steering side, there is a good amount of throw to maneuver the wheels when negotiating rough terrain, but out in the open the radius is pretty wide with the locked diffs, standard for a trail machine. The D110 does feel a little top heavy so keep that in mind when facing a roll situation. Through all the battery packs I ran during testing I managed to keep all four wheels mostly on the ground although there were some close instances where the tires were rolling over and the truck was saluting a wheel in the air. I still managed to keep going without incident. The RC4WD Gelande II D110 is pure scale awesomeness on the trails.

Review Gelande II D110-18
From the bottom you can see the links that make up the suspension set-up. The axle trusses are all machined aluminum. The only plastic in the suspension are the link ends. In the center are the plastic telescoping axles with steel yokes. RC4WD includes aluminum collars to the plastic shaft ends don’t spread and pop a universal under power.
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SPECS AND TUNING OPTIONS

DIMENSIONS
LENGTH: 22.44 in. / 570mm
WIDTH: 7.87 in. /200mm
WHEELBASE: 13 in. / 331mm
WEIGHT: 105.6 oz. / 3.05kg

BODY, WHEELS AND TIRES
BODY: Hard plastic D110 replica
WHEELS: 3-piece steel
WHEEL ADAPTER TYPE: Cross-pin hub
TIRES: RC4WD Dirt Grabber

SUSPENSION
TYPE: 3-link w/ Panhard front/ 4-link rear
SHOCK POSITIONS: 2-Tower/ Fixed Lower
CAMBER: Fixed
ROLL: Fixed
WHEELBASE: Fixed
RIDE HEIGHT: Shock Preload collars MISC: Optional pan-hard bar mount hole

STEERING
TYPE: Behind the Axle Link
TOE: Adjustable with spacers

CHASSIS
TYPE: Machined rails
MATERIAL: Aluminum
THICKNESS: 6mm

DRIVETRAIN
TYPE: 4WD
TRANSMISSION: Shaft
DIFFERENTIAL: Lock-outs
GEAR RATIO: Transfer case- 1.47:1, Pinion/spur- 4.57:1,
Transmission Internal 1.78:1, Axles Ratio- 2.67:1
BEARINGS: Metal shield
CLUTCH TYPE: Slipper clutch

RATING TALLY
Opinion: 9
Performance – Acceleration: 8
Performance – Steering: 8
Performance – Handling: 8
Performance – Durability: 9
Feature Breakdown: 9
Overall Value: 9

WRAP UP
Its clear that RC4WD went to great lengths to produce this D110 style trail truck, they took their popular scale looking Gelande II chassis and stretched it to fit under a factory custom D110 hard body and include a lot of cool scale model features like grilles, handles and more to give the truck a killer look. The truck drives great on the trails, but the real story here is the scale look and RC4WD nailed it for those modelers who want a mild or wild build. RC4WD offers lots of accessories to customize this machine even farther so your D110 can be one unique eye catching machine. You’ve got me hooked RC4WD, time for some more customizing and cool scale driving action.

LINKS
RC4WD, rc4wd.com
Tactic, distributed by Great Planes Model Distributorshobbico.com , (800) 682-8948
Savox, distributed by HRP Distributing, Inc.,hrpdealer.com , (800) 622-7223
Tamiya America Inc.,tamiyausa.com , (800) 826-4922
MaxAmps.com,maxamps.com  , (888) 654-4450
Yeah Racing, distributed by RCMart,  rcmart.com

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