3 Awesome Upgrades For Your 2WD Stampede

If you want to dramatically improve the performance of your two-wheel drive Stampede, you must think well beyond the typical brushless motor upgrades. As you may well know by now, the Stampede takes every opportunity to do wicked cartwheels and flips as you move through the corners and blast over jumps. Although this is great fun, constantly running down to flip your truck over can become tiresome while trying to learn or enjoy your local track. Luckily, you can easily improve the handling characteristics and overall performance of your Stampede by investing in the three following upgrades.

Big Bore Shock Set

The big bore shock set (5862) by Traxxas will instantly improve your vehicle’s ability to remain upright through the corners and land smoothly after taking big jumps. The shock bodies are made from hard-anodized aluminum that will stand up to an enormous amount of stress without breaking. The shafts are coated with titanium-nitride for improved durability and functionality.

The kit comes with springs installed and a small bottle of shock oil. In the future, you can improve your big bore shocks even more by investing in progressive rate springs and aluminum shock caps.

Pro-Line ProTrac Kit

The Pro-Line ProTrac kit (6062-00) is the ultimate way to widen the stance of your Stampede to improve its handling and overall stability. The upgraded arms and links will improve the strength of your build as well.

Since Pro-Line designed this kit for the Slash, the included rims will not fit your Stampede. Although you can purchase the other components separately, you will likely pay more than simply buying the full kit outright. You can offset your upgrade costs a bit by selling the short course wheels to RC enthusiasts in your area.

To ensure perfect fitment for this kit, you need to purchase 4mm rod ends (5525) from Traxxas. You will also need to run front rims in the stock 2.8 size all around to ensure your wheels match the offset requirements for this kit.  You can either buy new front rims and tires to put on the back, or just buy the rims and install your old rear tires to save your funds for other upgrades.

Wheelie Bar

You can help keep your Stampede from flipping and rolling by installing a purpose-built wheelie bar on the rear end. As the truck’s front wheel reach high in the air, the wheelie bar hits the ground to stabilize your vehicle. If you let off the throttle and lightly tap the brakes right as the wheelie bar hits the ground, your truck will return to its optimal position, so you can continue on your way.

Traxxas offers their wheelie bar in dark blue (3678X), bright green (3678A) or black (3678) to perfectly complement or contrast your truck’s color scheme. This bolt-on component is made from extremely durable molded nylon and features rubber tires. You can upgrade the wheelie bar tires to ones with red (5186) or blue (5186A) aluminum rims if you want to further customize the look of your Stampede.

Sourcing Your Stampede Upgrade Parts

Since Traxxas is well supported in almost every region, you can likely find these upgrades at your local hobby store. If you cannot, or just wish to save a few extra bucks, all of these parts are available from Amazon as well. You can use the part numbers listed above to search for your components on Amazon or order them from your local shop. Most 4WD and 2WD Traxxas parts tend to vary in size and fitment, so make sure to always verify the part numbers before completing your orders.

Check back to see how these upgrades turn out when installed on our son’s Craniac.

Soon to be upgraded. Stay tuned.
Soon to be upgraded. Stay tuned.
Fresh Painted Raptor Body For The Stampede

In true monster truck fashion, the bodies on the Stampede suffer extreme damage from all of the high speed cartwheels and flips. The stock body ripped at the rear post holes within a couple months of occasional usage. Even the the replacement body, the ’72 C10 from Proline, also started to come apart along the bed section after just a few months.


Unfortunately, the damage not only ruins the aesthetics, but also allows the body to flop around uncontrollably down the straights and over jumps.

To replace the Chevy body, we picked up the new F-150 Raptor SVT body designed specifically for the Stampede. The bold styling of the Raptor is a good match for the performance of the monster truck chassis.

The body is clear to allow you to paint it any color you wish. We chose Tamiya PS-38 Translucent Blue for the initial coats and Tamiya PS-17 Metallic Green for the base coat. About five coats of each color were applied with a 10-minute break in between. After letting the paint dry for about an hour, the window masking stickers were removed. We applied a single coat of Tamiya PS-31 Smoke to tint the windows.

The blue and green layers combined to create a beautiful metallic teal color that slightly changes with the light. Unfortunately, without an additional backing, the paint remains somewhat transparent. You can easily see the wires and chassis inside in bright light or while standing at the right angle. We will likely mask the windows and apply a few coats of black or white paint to either darken or brighten the teal tones.

For now, here are the results..

In The Shade




In The Sunlight



Painting New RC Car Bodies

We recently added three new RC bodies to our collection, the Lancia Delta Integrale, 72 Chevy C10 and the R32 Skyline. All three bodies started off clear and required custom paint to finish. We elected to use Tamiya paints all around due to their availability, price and quality. We were able to pick up the polycarbonate paints locally from Galaxy Hobby and HobbyTown USA.

Before painting, we carefully cut out the bodies using lexan scissors. We washed the bodies out with a small amount of dish soap and cool water. We removed all excess moisture with a couple thick paper towels. To finish up the prep process, we applied window-masking stickers to keep paint from adhering to those areas.

Lancia Delta Integrale XV-01

IMG_20150613_200741315 - Copy

Although the suggested bright white paint and iconic Martini livery looks absolutely stunning, I elected to go in a different direction with my Lancia. I selected the Tamiya Iridescent green and purple paint for my car. I left off the livery in favor of using just a few key accents.

As I added each coat of the iridescent paint, the body remained clear with just a hint of sparkly color. The iridescent paint received a thorough coat of PS-5 black backing to instantly allow the color to develop. I used one can each of the iridescent color and black backing to create the deepest tones possible. The plastic mirrors, spoiler and grill received a coat of Tamiya plastic paint in black.


72 Chevy C10 Stampede


For the C10, we elected to use Tamiya camel yellow paint with a black racing stripe, bumper and bed. Before starting the painting process on this body, it was necessary to tape off the racing stripe, bumpers and bed. We kept the tape in place while coating the rest of the body in yellow, and then a Tamiya white backing.


After carefully peeling off the tape, a thorough coat of black was applied across the entire body. The black backing color filled in the racing stripes and bed to create the desired final appearance. The combination of a white and black backing also brightened the camel yellow tones considerably.


Skyline R32 TT-02D


The R32 Skyline received Tamiya fluorescent orange paint with a bright silver backing to create a metallic effect. We applied the entire can of orange paint to the body for the richest tones possible. The result still looked a bit translucent, however. Three coats of bright silver were sprayed on next to create a stunning metallic finish.

We sprayed on a single coat of white paint as a backing, though it didn’t have much effect. Since the body ended up having some odd white spots, I would skip the white next time in favor of a darker backing. Some people state they’ve had good luck using a black, copper or red backing with the fluorescent orange.


Finishing Up With Tinted Windows

After finishing the painting process for all three cars, we carefully peeled back the tape on the windows. A couple coats of Tamiya smoke paint were applied to each one to create a tinted window effect. In my opinion, the effect turned out the best on the C10 body. On the Lancia and Skyline, it appears slightly blurry rather than a clean dark tint.

The bodies were fun to paint and turned out really well. They looked so good, in fact, that it was difficult to take them out bashing the next day. The only consolation was the thought of being able to paint new bodies once these ones start looking totally thrashed.

While we’re on the topic, do you guys have any suggestions for alternate bodies for the XV-01? The Lancia is already starting to look a little beat up!


Disclaimer: All Tamiya paint links are from my affiliate account at Amazon. Thank you in advance!