Go big or go home! That old saying is used in all sorts of motor sports and action sports, and it most certainly holds true for the addictive nature of jumping a RC monster truck. Once you get started in airborne antics, you will want more. Going big is easy—if you know what you’re doing. Let’s take a look at what it takes to get some really big air and still be able to drive away.
One of the most amazing things about RC trucks is that you can control their nose-up or nose-down attitude in the air. And, best of all, this is actually easier in big air situations since you’ll have more time to react compared to a fast on-track jump that’s usually low, fast and over quickly. Here’s how it’s done: If the nose of your truck is too low and it looks like you’re going to nose dive, grab some throttle. If the nose is too high, tap the brakes. The key is to not over correct.
Big air means big impacts. Before getting airborne, go through your truck and make sure the suspension is working properly and make sure the pinion set screw and motor mount screws are snug. Going up 5wt in shock fluid is also advised to help absorb the force from the landing. Remember, the more energy the suspension absorbs, the less that gets transferred onto the truck. You can also add short pieces of silicone fuel tubing on the exposed part of the shock shaft. This will function as a bump stop of hard landings.
Before you go big, take a number of smaller practice jumps to get used to your run-up area and the ramp. Where you stand is also important. It is highly recommended that you stand off to the side so that you can see the approach and also be able to fully see the truck while it’s airborne and landing. Many drivers sacrifice being able to see the landing by standing inline with the jump. They do this so they can easily hit the jump squarely, but completely miss being able to see the important landing and thus can’t make corrections as needed. When you are ready to tap into your inner Tanner Foust and make your first attempt at really big air, approach the ramp under throttle, but let of the trigger as soon as the truck is airborne. This is where you’ll watch the flight path your truck is making and get ready to make a correction for a level landing. As was explained before, if the nose is pointing down, squeeze the throttle. Jab the brakes if the nose is pointing up. These corrections should be smooth and relatively small inputs. Don’t over correct. What I mean is do not give too much of a correction that will require additional inputs. You don’t want your corrections to need corrections.
Backflips are fun, impressive and easy. That’s right, I said easy. First, the steps needed to perform a backflip are simple; you just grab some full throttle when in the air. Second, the rapidly spinning wheels act like a gyro and actually help the flying truck track straight. You’ll quickly notice the difference when you try a front flip (more on that later). So, to do a backflip, stay in the throttle as you leave the ramp. You may even go to a quick stab of full throttle if you weren’t already there. This throttle input will take about a second. If you grab full throttle and stay there, you will keep on flipping and probably land on something other than your roof. To stop the rotation and end the flip, simply tap the brakes.
In the same way a nose high attitude is corrected in the opposite way you correct a nose-low attitude, a front flip is initiated in the opposite way you initiate a backflip. To perform a front flip, tap the brakes as your truck is about halfway to its anticipated highest point. A quick blip of the throttle may be needed to stop the rotation and level the truck out. Front flips can be trickier than backflips because you often get some crazy, tweaked rotations without the gyro effect of the wheels spinning.
> Nose too high when jumping, hit the brakes
> Nose too low when jumping, hit the throttle
> Perform a backflip by staying in the throttle
> Perform a front flip by hitting the brakes in the air