So, it’s official. I have the bug. The more I research Tyco RCs, the more I want to collect.
After putting an ad on Craigslist and getting an immediate response, I was hopeful that I could avoid eBay until it was time to look for the rare stuff. However, I must’ve been lucky, because that was the only response I’ve gotten so far.
So, it was time to hit up eBay. After comparing prices I bought a few more toys for the “garage”. First up was a Phantom FX-4 buggy. This car was pretty much new in the box, I’ll have a separate writeup on it soon. Then came a Rebound, Maxx Traxx, Triple Wheels, and Tantrum!
Now, you may notice that there are no remotes laying next to these cars. I bought them being fully aware of the fact: In my limited experience, I’ve been able to use toy-grade transmitters interchangeably (to a degree), so I figured I could use one of the generic radios I already had laying around. Plus, these were cheap enough that even if I did have to scour for a specific radio, I still got a fair deal. Remotes aren’t exactly growing on trees, but hobby-grade conversions are always an option, too.
So, on to the “unboxing”. I got the cars in the mail and immediately began charging the 6V pack that came with the Rebound. Upon removing it, I noticed a web address on a sticker in the Rebound battery bay. I did some research, and it’s a re-release, but as far as I can tell it’s identical to the original save for the aforementioned sticker. It was in great shape, the tires looked new, and only a couple minor scratches. The Tantrum had seen better days, it’s paper-backed decals were sun-faded, but the Maxx Traxx and Triple Wheels were in good shape for their age. I thought the latter 2 looked similar in the auction listing, but in person it’s obvious that the only difference between the Max Traxx and Triple Wheels are the tires and colors used.
Before I continue, it should be noted that my hobby-grade RCs twitch like crazy if you turn them on before the transmitter. You could end up in the hospital if you’re not careful. My Aero Hopper and Fast Traxx do the same thing, although are less likely to tear off my fingers. So, to “test” these cars, I popped in a battery, turned it on, and waited for them to go nuts. None did. OK, must be a bad battery, right? No prob, I buy an old but unopened 6.0V pack and charger from Craigslist. The next day, I repeat the test with the new battery and get the same results. I also tried using my Fast Traxx remote on the Rebound, as they’re both 27MHz, use tank/”skid steer” controls, and were released around the same time (if you don’t account for the re-release aspect), but nothing was happening.
I posted a thread in the Ultimate RC forums about it, and was relieved to hear that many Tyco models don’t twitch out, it was likely a safety feature that was introduced over time (My 2008 Terrain Twister doesn’t twitch at all). However, it’s also a bit disheartening because while it’s good to know that these cars are probably fine, finding remotes will be difficult. The Maxx Traxx and Triple Wheels are so similar that I’m still hoping one’s remote will work with the other, but I haven’t seen any on eBay’s completed listings…
In any event, I learned a little lesson about transmitter compatibility, and hopefully I’ll find a solution soon.