Published on October 28th, 2011 | by Drift Mission6
Max Speed Technology MS-01D Pro Review
Summary: MST has done a great job with the design of the MS-01D Pro chassis. It is very innovative and unique in the Radio Control drift chassis industry. The chassis kit is very good value for its cost.
Max Speed Technology (MST) is new to the radio control drift market. This car is designed and produced exclusively by MST in Taiwan. The MST MS-01D Pro is a two belt driven midship RC Drift Spec chassis. The MS-01D chassis has a low profile mid-ship positioned motor design, ideal weight distribution for RC Drifting. It is a direct competitor against other popular Drift Spec chassis such as the Tamiya VDF, Hot Bodies TC-FD, D-Like RE-R and many more. The most unique aspect of the MS-01D is the suspension arm design. MST has done away with the traditional toe-blocks and incorporated the upper and lower suspension arms into the front and rear bulkheads. The slim design of the lower suspension arm allows for more steering angle, which is desired by many CS or counter-steer modified drifters. The upper suspension arms are also designed for better steering clearance as well as castor angle adjustments. This is truly one of the strongest points of this chassis design and makes it unique to any others you have seen in the market today.
Chassis Kit Impressions
The MST MS-01D Pro kit contents are made from high quality materials. Everything you need to build the chassis is included with the exception of electronics and car body, which is standard for RC car kits. The kit includes a generous amount of aluminum alloy parts and carbon fiber upper deck for aesthetic appeal and enhanced performance. The aluminum parts included with the kit are center motor bulkhead, heatsink motor mount plate, high quality threaded suspension, front one-way tube, turnbuckles, spur gear holders, alloy tensioner holder with low friction pulley and servo mounts. The kit includes ball bearings, front 60° universal drive shafts, rear universal drive shafts, chrome coated plastic brake discs, plastic brake calipers and carbon fiber upper decks. The parts listed above are upgraded from the original MST MS-01D or Spice SRD-01 Kit. The addition of hex screws are a nice touch from Max Speed Technology. These parts enhance the MS-01D chassis’ performance and aesthetics. The plastic used for the remaining parts are strong and durable. The kit also includes a set of countersteer CS gears kit (1.54, 1.67, 1.82 CS ratio), which is not common in any other chassis on the market. This clearly shows that MST pays attention the the RC Drift market and is aware of what people want.
The kit also includes the basic tools you need to complete the chassis build, except a Phillips screwdriver, that is the only extra tool needed for the build. The instructions manual very detailed, the diagrams provide the necessary details so that you do not get lost in the build. The hardware diagrams are to scale, so you will always be able to compare and ensure you are using the proper screws, bearings, or other parts for each step of the build.
Overall Chassis Build Process
This build process was quite the interesting one. The instruction manual included with the kit is very detailed. The diagrams and scale hardware sizing on the side panel was a good help with the build. The instruction manual resembled what you would find from a Tamiya kit. The organization of the parts bags were not as friendly as other chassis kits that I have built in the past. The parts trees were separately bagged to facilitate the manufacturing process, rather than bagged together for a friendly build process. There were several occasions where different parts were located in several bags for one step of the build process. This would not be a problem for an experienced RC chassis builder, however it may be a bit of a challenge for beginner RC builders. It requires more attention to the build diagrams to ensure that the chassis is build properly. To read more about the detailed build process – CLICK HERE.
The MST-01D Pro chassis has some very unique characteristics to their design. Their suspension arm design is unlike any other Drift RC chassis on the market. Where other manufacturers chose to adopt the toe blocks pivot design, MST mounted it directly to the bulkheads with ball connections. The upper bulkhead houses the droop adjustment screw, which means that the droop adjustor is not incorporated into the main chassis plate, which leads to limitations of the suspension travel. With MSTs chassis design, the suspension arms now have a greater degree of freedom which means better performance can be achieved. The lower suspension arms have been designed to be narrow for greater potential steering angle. The upper suspension arms are designed such that the castor angle can be adjusted, which is uncommon in any other RC Drift Spec chassis. The other manufacturers choose a C-hub style design, so the castor angle cannot be adjusted without a new option part. This is another reason why this chassis is unique in the RC Drift category. Their suspension arm and bulkhead designs alone are very innovative and allow for greater performance. It is evident that MST has done their research when designing this chassis.
Test Drive and Feedback
We used a more budget oriented approach when equipping this chassis with electronics. All the parts used are easy to get for a relatively low cost. So far we have put approximately 20 battery cycles through the chassis and it performs very well. The chassis was setup as a 50/50 drifter; evenly distributed 4WD system. The setup used for the car is stock settings right out of the instruction manual. First impression of the car is that the weight distribution is phenomenal, it behaves like many of the high-end RC Drift kits that we have driven. The performance of the car is much better after 2 or 3 battery cycles, where all the parts have had a chance to function optimally. It was very easy to control for both long and short drifts and was tested on several drivers which all responded with positive feedback. A video of the test drive is shown at the bottom of this page.
The main chassis and damper stays are made of plastic so it is prone to some flex, however these flex characteristics seem to work well with the chassis. The small amount of flex in the chassis seem to give it more grip and speed when drifting. The chassis was also very forgiving when the driver makes an error, it was easy to recover and regain control. Overall the chassis is very well balanced and performs very well.
Drift Wheels & Tires
The wheels are a little different then most others on the market and require tire glue to affix the tires. This helps to achieve a more even tire wear and they are stronger due to the design. They are a 7 spoke JDM style wheel that looks great standing and in motion. The wheels come in black but can easily be painted with some Tamiya TS paint if black isn’t your thing.
The tires are made from a medium compound poly material, compared to HPI T-drifts they are a bit harder. The tires come with an inherited 3 degrees of camber so it makes the cambered look easy to achieve. The 60 degree cut outer edge to achieve the stretched tire look are an added touch. Used on concrete they are more slippery and wear slower than t-drifts. Used on asphalt the tires produced more grip and for an excellent slide, they do wear quicker on asphalt. These wheels are very good for a beginner, it provides a very easy slide and will have longer life as well.
Overall Quality of Chassis Kit
Carbon Fiber Parts
The carbon fiber is 2.5mm in thickness and of high quality. The cut quality is very good and the extra aesthetic edge adds another dimension to the carbon fiber. It is our common practice to seal the edges of the carbon fiber and the nice clean edge made it easy to do. Overall this is of very good quality and a has a nice smooth edge.
The kit includes a generous amount of aluminum parts. MST used high quality aluminum for their parts and they are blue anodized for a very nice look. The threaded aluminum dampers are machined and the fitments of each part was very precise. The dampers assembled easily and sealed without any leakage. The front one-way come standard with this kit, which is an added bonus. Overall the aluminum parts were of high quality.
The plastic parts included with the kit is of high quality. Parts such as the rear spool, bulkheads damper stays are very strong and durable. After 20 battery cycles the rear spool has held up very well with little wear. The main chassis and damper stays held up very well also, they incur slight flex but do not deform permanently, both good characteristics to have if used properly. Overall we were impressed with the quality of the plastic parts.
The MST MS-01D Pro chassis is priced MSRP at $359USD. This chassis kit comes with a generous amount of aluminum alloy option parts that enhance both function and style. The kit also includes a front one-way tube and countersteer gears, which are rarely included with RC drift kits at this price range. This chassis is priced in the mid-range between the beginner drift kits such as the Yokomo Type C Drift Package, and the high end Tamiya VDF.
It may not be as well equipped with carbon fiber like the Tamiya VDF, but makes up for it with several other more innovative designs that further enhance performance. This kit would be a very good beginner kit for anyone getting into RC Drifting. This car is very configurable and has room for growth with any drifter. MST is always developing new option parts for this chassis so future upgrade will always be available if you so desire.
MST has done a great job with the design of the MS-01D Pro chassis. It is very innovative and unique in the Radio Control drift chassis industry. The chassis kit is very good value for its cost. It would be great for any beginner getting into RC Drifting because it is a car that can grow with the drifter. Almost every setting on this car can be adjusted; from toe, camber, castor angles all the way to Ackerman angle. This chassis can further aid a beginner evolve and tune their RC Drifting skills.
Overall this is a very good chassis kit for anyone looking to start in RC Drift or anyone looking for their next chassis.
Video of the MST MS-01D Pro in Action
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