STRC Racing and the Axial Wraith. If you appreciate a little drama, you could consider it a match made in RC heaven. Both companies are at the top of their games. STRC is one of the more popular aftermarket companies–especially when it comes to aluminum parts–and the Wraith is one of the hottest trucks available. I’ve been outfitting my Wraith with an assortment of STRC hop-ups. I started with the drivetrain and now I’m moving on to the steering.
The Wraith trucks–both the RTR and the kit–use a flexible plastic steering link setup. This offers the benefit of durability, but that same flexibility that allows you to bounce off rocks or curbs without worry gives less than precise steering at times. Since I was upgrading to a heavy duty metal gear Savox SA-1283SG servo, I wasn’t worried about durability, so installed STRC’s aluminum steering links. The new setup consists of two links and includes threaded rod, but you will need to get Axial long straight rod ends (part #5 on parts three AX80057). I mounted the long link under the knuckles and the short link above. If you mount the link above the knuckles, you will notice an extreme amount of toe-out.
To further beef up the steering, I swapped out the plastic steering knuckles and C’s with STRC’s aluminum parts. These parts take an extreme beating on all crawlers and could easily be considered a must-have upgrade. In addition to being next to impossible to break, the aluminum allows the use of thread-lock when attaching the knuckles to the C’s. This goes a long way towards keeping the Wraith running and off the bench as the stock setup is prone to unscrewing itself. I was pleasantly surprised with how easy the new C’s slid on the end of the splined axle. I’ve had other aluminum C’s on these axles and they were a complete bear to get on and off. The STRC parts slid right on, but still held firm.
The steering knuckles are the perfect accompaniment to the C-Hubs. It’s worth noting that the bearings that go in the back of the knuckle must be fully seated. Take a good look at how the bearing must slide into the knuckle before trying to install it. Trust me, the bearings fit without any difficulty. Close inspection will reveal a slight step design inside the knuckle. The bearing must (and will) slide past the step and seat fully in the knuckle.
An additional upgrade I made was to swap out the stock plastic axle truss/upper link mount. The STRC mount is going for heavy duty and as a result looks a little clunky. That’s an subjective opinion, of course, and the end result is that you are unlikely to break this mount. Remember to use thread lock for all screws threading into metal.
Performance & Final Call
Simply put, these are great upgrades for any Wraith owner. The end result looks cool, is extremely strong and works better than stock. The knuckles and C-Hubs are an investment and are by no means dirt cheap, but they are reasonably and comparably priced–and well machined. The aluminum links simply won’t bow and bend when meeting resistance. I do, however, suggest upgrading the servo when swapping out the stock plastic links. The stock servo is metal gear, but the flexible links do act as a protective servo saver. I’ve run these on rocks and jumped my Wraith and have experienced zero problems–nor do I expect any.
- CNC Machined HD Alum. Front Servo Mount >> Part no. STA80072FGM >> $23.99
- CNC Machined Precision Alum. C-Hubs >> STA80062GM >> $30.99
- CNC Machined Precision Aluminum Steering Knuckles >> STA80061GM >> $31.99
- Heavy Duty Aluminum Steering Linkage Set >> STA80073GM >> $12.99