Holmes Hobby TorqueMaster BR-XL Review

When building an Axial SCX10 for Top Truck Challenge type competition, I knew water and mud would be a part of the equation. I needed a waterproof speed control, but wanted one that was fully programable and has features I needed such as strong drag brakes for control on the rocky sections.

My search led me to Holmes Hobbies and the TorqueMaster BR-XL. This brushed controller is manufactured by Castle Creations to Holmes Hobbies’ specifications and is capable of being adjusted via a PC and Castle Creation’s Castle Link USB interface. Even better, Holmes Hobby offers an “epoxy dipped” version that is, for all intensive purposes, waterproof.

Even though the TorqueMaster BR-XL is fairly compact, it has some impressive specifications. It can handle up to a 6S LiPo, survive 80 amp continuous operation and has no motor limit when using a 540-sized motor.

The version of the TorqueMaster BR-XL I tested features epoxy for a case and a cross cut heat sink. There is, however, no on/off switch. Plug in your battery and the speed control turns on. No battery or motor plugs are included. I used a male Deans Ultra Plug to connect to a battery and a female Deans Ultra Plug to connect to a motor.

Holmes Hobbies products are sold direct to the consumer on their site and can also be found at outlets such as A Main Hobbies.



Input: 2S to 6S LiPo (7.4 to 28.8V)

Output max: 80 amps continuous

Size: 2 x 1.5 x 0.8 in. (50x39x21mm)

BEC: 6 volt, 5 amp

Warranty: 1 year (60 days for waterproof version)

Price: $98.99 ($108.99 waterproofed)

The TorqueMaster BR-XL went from install on the bench right to competition. The Top Truck Challenge event included a wide range of  tests including a dead weight sled pull, obstacle course, teeter totter and many more. It performed flawless, survived a deep dunking or two and worked well enough for be to take home a trophy. I do wish it had a on/off switch as reaching under the body wasn’t too convenient. During the entire day of hardcore use, the speed control stayed cool and met all expectations I had.


Holmes Hobbies

A Main Hobbies

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