Eagle Racing Japan released a Drift conversion kit for the Tamiya TA-05 Version II. Tamiya TA-05 has been a popular chassis in the drift community. The already popular drift specific Tamiya VDF chassis is based on the TA-05, so it is only natural for 3rd party companies to make a mid-ship conversion for this chassis. Eagle is not the first to create this mid-ship conversion kit. There have been other popular brand such as RC Square, Street Jam, Fijon and so on, that already have the drift conversion kit. The principle of this kit is simple, shift the motor to a mid-ship position and evenly distribute the battery weight. This is an attempt to create a 50/50 weight distribution side to side, therefore providing a more consistent drift. This kit is dubbed the Eagle GRT conversion kit. Eagle has also created a selection of CS gears, alloy parts, and spare parts for the the GRT kit; some of the spare parts will also fit the TA-05. Eagle recently re-released the Eagle TA-05 GRT Version 2 conversion kit, the primary difference is new steering wipers to correct Ackerman angle of the original design.
Conversion Kit Impression
The kit comes assembled from the factory, straight out of the box it is ready for the Tamiya TA-05 V2 donor chassis. Straight conversion would mean a 50/50 drifting style, I opted for a countersteer CS setup for this chassis. The mid-ship motor setup creates a better weight balance for drifting. The Eagle TA-05 GRT conversion kit along with a TA-05 V2 chassis is all that is necessary to convert this chassis into a new drift machine.
Overall Chassis Build Process
This chassis came assembled, so some dismantling was done so that it was build to my standard. The carbon fiber edges was relatively clean so minimal effort was put into cleaning off some areas and application of CA glue to seal the edges of the carbon fiber. The instructions are not the best, however, if you have ever built a kit from scratch then it should not be much trouble. If you built your original Tamiya TA-05 from kit, then this conversion kit will be no problem. The build was completed with ease. There are a couple of small modifications that were necessary in order to CS dori the chassis. I had forgotten to get a new shorter front belt to compensate for the 14T center one-way and 40T front pulley; stock setup is 37 front pulley and 18 solid center pulley. After some spacers to raise the tensioner for ideal front belt tension that was no problem. The rear drive setup required some slight modifications in order for the belt to fit properly. Luckily I had purchased an extra set of Eagle tensioners, along with the shorter 485 belt, they came in handy to tension the belt by the motor bulkhead. The 5000mAh battery was used for this chassis, but the battery is thicker than the GRT designed size battery. My solution for this problem was to use some of the blue spacers for the countersunk screw as spacers to raise the battery holders and top chassis brace; the countersunk screws were replaced with some M3 button screws. The stock plastic toe blocks were replaced with aluminum Tamiya 415 toe blocks. After all the additional parts and added options, this GRT conversion is complete. This conversion build is not difficult, but I had my share of struggles based on the additional modifications I pursued. I had a spare set of 3Racing HB Cyclone dampers to use on this to replace the existing Tamiya stock dampers. Overall it was a good build processes and it was an enjoyable build. With all the extras that were added to this chassis; all parts are listed at the bottom of the post, it is far from the original GRT Spec Eagle Racing started with.
Overall Quality of the Conversion Kit
The conversion kit is very good quality, the carbon fiber is 2.5mm thick and is nicely polished. It comes with a generous amount of carbon fiber upgrades to enhance the look and stiffness of the TA-05 chassis. New front hard foam bumper with carbon fiber holders and hardware to mount it. New anodized blue alloy motor mount bulkhead with vdf style alloy steering wipers. New center drive shaft, 18T alloy center pulleys, alloy spur gear holder, alloy servo mounts and alloy battery posts. This conversion kit effectively converts this kit to a “drift spec” chassis, a very good option for the TA-05 conversion.
The MSRP of the conversion kit is around $110USD so it is very affordable. Other rival kits such as Street Jams and Square are much more costly options. The fijon MDF conversion kit is also another relatively cheap alternative. I believe that this kit Eagle Racing GRT Conversion kit is a very good value for the cost. It is everything you need to upgrade from the traditional TA-05 chassis to a competitive drift spec chassis.
This conversion kit has very good value for the cost of the unit. It is the mid range alternative to those high end Street Jam or Square conversion kits. This kit provides everything you need to convert your existing Tamiya TA-05 V2 chassis to a drift machine. This chassis is very easily countersteer CS modified for a greater difficulty and style in drifting. This is a very good upgrade for those that want a midship chassis like the Tamiya VDF, without the larger price tag. It is easy to upgrade and Eagle carries a large variety of parts to keep this chassis interesting. Their continual improvements on their existing products also shows the commitment they have to keep this chassis in the market. Overall it is a good conversion kit and is able to grow and develop your drift RC skills.
Additional Information: The Conversion Kit
The Eagle GRT Kit Contents:
- CG top and bottom Chassis Plates
- CG front and rear Damper Stays
- CG front bumper holders
- CG Battery Holder
- Alloy Motor Mount
- Alloy Steering Assembly
- Alloy Battery Posts
- Alloy Steering Knuckle Extenders
- Alloy Tensioners
- Alloy Servo Mounts and Antenna Holder
- Alloy 18T Center Pulleys and Center Shaft
- Alloy Spur Gear Adaptor with 128T 64P Spur Gear (Pinion not included)
- Servo Steering Turnbuckle
- Turnbuckles for L/R steering
- Front and Rear Belts
- Stiff Foam Front Bumper
Additional Option Parts
I had decided to get some extra option part for this chassis to further improve its performance and style. These parts are not necessary but I feel they would add rigidity and change the driving characteristics of the chassis to my liking. A few hop-ups from Eagle were also added to the kit.
- 2 x Eagle Racing Aluminum Alloy Rear Bulkhead: Tamiya TA05 Ver2 Lightweight
- 2 x Eagle Racing Aluminum Front Solid Axle: Tamiya TA05 Ver2
- Eagle Racing TA-05 GRT Tensioner Set
- Eagle Racing Strong Center One-Way Pulley 14T
- Eagle Racing Strong Solid Axle Pulley 28T
- Eagle Racing Strong Center Pulley 22T
- Eagle Racing Belt Long (3M-485): TA05 Drift Chassis
- Eagle Racing Belt Short (3M-213): TA05 Drift Chassis
40 (Square from TA-05 CS Kit) x 14 (Eagle Center One-way pulley)
28 (Eagle 28T pulley) x 22 (Eagle pin style center pulley)
Total 2.25 CS counter dori ratio!