Axial’s latest speed machine, the Yeti, has proven to be very popular. It’s a lot of fun, but it’s not perfect – and there are a couple of tweaks it needs right out of the box. Before you run it for the first time, you really need to do the following:
Threadlock the driveshaft pins
The small pin screws at each end of the front and rear driveshafts need to be removed, have threadlock applied, and reinserted. This is a quick and easy job, and can be done without having to take the car apart (just lift the cage). The pin nearest the rear axle can be easily accessed from beneath the car (see photo), the others will require a hex driver with a long shaft. You can only remove the pin from one side – you may need to rotate the driveshaft if you can’t unscrew the pin at the first go. Once you’ve removed the pin, drip one drop of blue threadlock onto the threaded part of the screw, and reinsert. As before, you can only reinsert the pin from the correct side – there’s no thread on the other side. If you don’t do this, the vibrations from running the buggy will shake at least one of the pins out.
Tighten the wheel nuts
This is more of a stopgap than anything; the Yeti is fitted with Axial’s IFD (Interchangeable Face Design) wheels, which use a pin hub rather than a 12mm hex to lock the wheels to the axle. This is fine on a rock crawler, but on a vehicle built for speed it doesn’t work – the wheel hubs are plastic, and the axle pin is quite likely to just carve through the plastic (especially on 3S). Tightening the nuts should make the wheels last a little longer, but really you need to upgrade the hubs. Axial have recognised this and provided an update kit to add 12mm hexes to the yeti.
With those quick fixes, your first few runs should be relatively trouble-free. Then you can turn your attention to a couple of upgrades you should look into, which are:
- Stronger trailing arms
- Improving the wheel hubs
The stock trailing arms on the Yeti are very flexible; you can easily squeeze them inwards. This also strains the ends of the arms and causes them to break where they join the body or axle. You’ve got two choices: strengthen the arms, or replace them with metal ones. The new Yeti kit includes metal braces for the arms, so that’s one option, but I’ve decided to replace them with aluminium arms instead. The upper arms are less of an issue, so you can leave them for later.
As for the wheel hubs, again there are two options: use a stronger hub that won’t get ruined by the pin, or switch to a normal hex hub. Using a metal hub will allow you to continue using the Axial wheels, whereas switching to a hex hub means you can either use the Axial hex adapter kit, or switch to all-new wheels.
Here I’ve gone with an aluminium hub that fits the Axial IFD wheels, and I’ve also fitted a replacement aluminium wheel face – the face wasn’t necessary, but I’m going for a blue theme on this vehicle so I liked the look of this face rather than the stock black plastic.
Lastly, I’d also suggest adding some body clip tags to make things easier. Although the Yeti has an easy-access body that pivots up and out of the way, there will be many times when you want to take the body off completely. Body clip tags make this a really quick and easy task- and they also make the clips easier to find later!
Of course, there are always many more things you can do – replace the plastic shock caps, upgrade the shock towers, change the tyres, the body, the suspension – but the things I’ve mentioned in this post are what you should prioritise. The rest is up to you!