I’ve just taken delivery of this nifty little 4WD desert buggy and taken it for a spin in a local patch of scrub, with the current extended heat wave the ground is very dry and dusty, perfect conditions for a desert truck!
After bashing around in circles and bespoke figure 8 patterns for a while the truck started to cut out at random, however leaving the truck for a minute or two seemed to clear the problem. I would put this down to some sort of overheat protection, I noticed the motor was very hot when I accidentally touched it while reaching in to turn the power off.
So that was one thing I learned to be aware of, the second was to come next – after bashing around this dusty patch which had some piles of rubble and other bits and pieces around, suddenly the buggy started to produce an alarming knocking sound when running, as if something was stuck in a wheel spoke or rubbing against a drive shaft; I pulled out a few small twigs but the knocking was still there, I would have to take a closer look back home.
After unscrewing most of the screws I could find and examine the innards of the mechanism I eventually noticed the fault, and realised I only needed to remove one screw to get to where the problem lay – in the pinion gear chamber.
The screw in question is the one nearest the tyre in this photo, once removed it allows the pinion gear chamber cover to be removed.
I discovered a tiny stone lodged in the pinion gear itself, which I easily managed to remove using a sharp blade; I made sure that I remove the stone completely from the chassis then reassembled the buggy, tested it and the knocking was gone. Success!
This is a fun little buggy that performs very well, I was amazed at the bumps and clumps it managed to get over without too much trouble, when it did flip it landed on all four tyres more often than not and there were a few exciting side wheelie moments to boot! Highly recommended for kids big and small.