Customer Reviews: Maisto R/C 27Mhz (3-Channel) Rock Crawler Radio Control Vehicle (Colors May Vary)
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on February 12, 2013
Let's start off by saying that this is not a $250 Hobby grade RC, it's a toy. But it is also a lot more than 'just' a toy. for one, I haven't seen many toys that had a fully articulated multi-link suspension, with roughly an inch and a half of travel (that's the body sitting flat. If you lift one tire, you'll notice that you can lift it 3 and a half inches before it lifts another tire.) From a mechanical side, it's a very clevery built starter to test interest in hobby RC; if this truck is fun, then a hobby grade RC will thrill. And, this truck has a lot going for it to make an excellent starter truck for budget minded individuals. Another great benefit of this truck is that it IS highly articulate. Many toy RC trucks with 'suspension' are for looks, but this truck has shocks with coilovers, and they DO work when you put the truck in a bind. They suspension linkages and shocks aren't cosmetic, they're fully functional.

It is slow, but if you look at the real world crawlers, speed isn't the end goal; torque is, and this truck is surprisingly torquey to be powered by six AA batteries. It's not a wall climber, but it will climb up rocks as tall as it is, and sometimes taller depending upon the approach side of the rock. It's capable considering the cost, and it's also very sturdy. Just this morning I had a little testing session, and I can't tell you the number of times I jarred the bottom casing off of rocks and while the crunch sound was unnerving, the bottom side of the truck is still in good shape. Yes, the rocks have dinged it up in places, but that's part of the brilliance; it's less than $50 shipped, so a ding isn't the end of the world. Do people who spend $500 feel the same way? Maybe, maybe not.

This truck is not without fault. For one, the steering is dodgy. One time when you turn the wheels, it'll turn some, the next time it'll turn much more. Considering that 99% of the design is towards moving the truck over obstacles and not something like figure 8s, it's not a big deal. The turning circle is pretty large, but if the wheels turned very sharply, I'm betting they'd shear off the truck a lot easier when you bounce it off a rock at a funny angle.

The controller I do not like at all. It's a pistol grip style, and no pistol grip controller has ever satisfied me. A personal different, but not a big one. I'd prefer two toggles in a hand held controller, but we don't always get what we prefer. If the choice is a lesser truck with a controller I like, or this truck with a controller I don't like, I'd pick this one.

Liking or disliking RC often confuses because people use the vehicles for purposes that they weren't designed for. This is a crawler, not a racer or a trophy truck. It's meant to go up and down rocky terrain, not go 99 MPH and turn like an F-16. With that in mind, this truck is a good one. The tires have some grip, the body is positioned so it does look weird, but the body isn't bouncing off of obstacles, and the gearing is there in spades.

For mine, it's destined to be modded towards hobby grade. The truck is literally that good, and I've driven some pretty costly hobby RC crawlers to compare it to. Rather than go the conventional method to Hobby grade and throw money at the hobby, I'm going to make this one a long term build for me. Being able to build a competitive hobby crawler on a $40 base, and effortlessly shove it up a trail that $500 machines struggle with, that's what it's about! First up is a heavy dose of protective copper cladding underneath to keep those rocks from cracking the gear housings. ;)
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on August 18, 2010
To correct the description, it actually needs 6 AA batteries.

I wanted an inexpensive off road R/C vehicle that didn't cost much over $100. I'm not planning on racing, just something for the yard and driveway. Well, this fit the bill perfectly. It will crawl over grass, sidewalks, sand, small animals, almost anything that gets in it's way. It does exactly what you think those cheap R/C trucks SHOULD do but don't. I drove it in the rain and through shallow water and it did great. The only downside so far is the whine of the motors but it probably geared to heck to do all that it does. I paid less for it at Wally World so shop around.

+ two motors
+ true four wheel drive
+ AA batteries (not some battery pack that is hard to find)
+ good value for the money
+ good tires and suspension

- motor/gear whine
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on January 12, 2011
My 9 year old son got this for Christmas and he was happy with it. He makes up indoor obstacle courses with legos, books, rocks and other things to drive over. It pretty much went over everything no problem. The wheels are great! They're not the plastic ones that have no traction that gets the car stuck with the wheels spinning & spinning. These wheels are bouncy and have great traction for climbing over things. My son takes it out into the snow (although it's probably not recommended for wet snow) but it works all the same. The independent suspension is amazing! All 4 wheels bend independently, hense making "4 wheeling" easier. It requires 6 AA batteries and a 9 volt battery for the remote.
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Very durable, simple to use, and lot of fun! It is pretty impressive as to what it can do.

This is my first time successfully using an RC vehicle. Runs easily, easy to control speed and steer, and great to play with for all ages. Laborious to open, with all of the twist ties; but, hey, free high quailty twist ties. Nice 'display box' as a gift and packed well by the manufacturer. Simple to use by most, works in tall grass, excellent RC distance.

Seems like AWD but I think it has just front and rear motors, and articulates well. Good traction on all surfaces used on. Kirkland 'AA' batteries (6 you place in the car, simple plastic lock door) lasted 3 days with lots of tough use and continued to last over a week with reasonable use; most of his things are broken within a day. The 9-volt battery in the remote transmitter works longer than the 6AA's in the car. You do not need expensive batteries but for the 9VDC remote I use a Li-Ion fire detector battery (regular would likely be fine).

This was a birthday gift for a 6 year birthday-boy (Captain Distructo-type kid). It has lasted very well and climbs over anything reasonable (can't climb stairs, but goes down well) and does it easily. If it tips-over the car antenna bends; just straighten it for longer reception; it is a wire and comes with a straw-like piece you slip-on; just slide it over the wire, place the straw into the car body where the wire comes out and tie a small knot in the protruding wire end to keep the straw on. The car runs into things and survives (large soft tires).

Runs slowly in soft, long grass but fast on smoother hard surfaces. I think the only con is the gearing is noisy to some (non-interested females), like if it is used near people eating at a picnic or in the back yard and trying to talk and be heard and it is close by. Not bad, really.

Three different frequencies can be easily selected if you get two or three of these (simple external switches for channels A, B, and C), or someone else has one, so the frequencies do not conflict. Though it can be fun to have big sister control it the same time little brother uses it. It works well in sand, probably not in high water (elecrtonics do not like water and there are no water seals (a little rain may be OK or a recently watered lawn) or very high grass (where grass can wind up on the axels). Very flexible axels, large soft tires with somewhat sticky rubber, and it is lots of fun.

Great for kids and adults, probably not great for RC enthusiasts with experience who want speed, and tight circles. Great price and great for beginners. Not a great turning radius but doing a 4 point turn works well and is easy. It backs up very well. If you want better spend a lot more money (I see some going for hundreds or even over a thousand; $$$). This is great for potential breakage by a kid, and is pretty impressive to me. My grandson, and son, loves it. If you want guaranteed red get this red one for $5 or so more, but if the color does not matter get the Rock Crawler in 'any color' for $5 or more less.

The Morphibian works well in water but not grass; this is great on surfaces not puddles or ponds. I highly recommend it and just bought another 'any color' Rock Crawler, as my small dog has fun being chased by it, too. And, I can compete with my grandson.
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on February 19, 2015
I love it, make sure to buy rechargeble batteries.
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on April 1, 2014
The Rock Crawler worked fine for a couple hours of play. During that time it appeared to be a really fun toy for a 9 year old, and the relatively slow top speed means it actually works pretty well indoors, as well as outdoors.

But within a day the only functions working with the controller were forward/reverse. Steering, both right and left, were broken. I suspect it is a broken switch, as we could hear a small rattling noise in the controller that wasn't there at first.

A toy that works for less than a day? No big deal, sometimes that sort of thing happens. That's what warranties and return policies are for. But trying to get a response out of Maisto? That's been one complete dodge and misdirect on their part, from the very beginning. The one time I was able to speak to a live person in customer service at Maisto I was told they had had some turnover and were extremely backlogged with service requests. I told them that I was concerned because I wanted to request a Return Authorization # before the 30 day warranty period expired, and their answer was that due to their backlog, that wouldn't be an issue, and requesting that I wait for a response.

After another I sent a *6th* email between 3/10/14 and 3/30/14 requesting a return authorization, their response was a succinct:
Dear Eric, Thank you for writing.
Please return the item to Amazon.
Thank you,
Customer Service
Maisto International, Inc.:

Frankly, that's a crap answer. If you don't intend to stand behind the 30 day return policy in your product literature, save me the trouble and tell me to return it to Amazon the very first time I write. When it comes to customer service, Maisto is a huge disappointment.
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on December 23, 2015
These things are really tough and work really well. I removed the slots in the battery bay so I could install a 7.4 volt lithium polymer battery, 1300 milliamps. It will run for almost two hours on a single charge! The batteries are 5$. You need a lipo charger that you can buy from hobbyking for 30$.
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on October 25, 2015
My son loves the rock crawler radio control truck and he has a lot of fun with it. The rock crawler goes over everything, we live on 3 acres of wooded land and he has taken this truck out and drove it over rocks, branches, holes and whatever else he could find. The suspension on the truck is great, each tire lifts separately so it is great for off roading. The truck measures about 13 inches high and 8 inches long. If you have a child that likes remote control cars then this would be a great gift for them. The truck has a nice speed to it. While this is a toy even my husband had fun playing with it.
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on March 13, 2013
Got this car for my Grandson who is a little young (5) to have the skills and coordination to be a good driver, never the less, he crashes everything in it's path and giggles as he does. The car hasn't suffered at all and it keeps on running without damage. Very well made toy.
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on December 26, 2015
Not worth $20. It is a fail because it makes extremely wide turns. Practically impossible to enjoy indoor or outdoor. Attached picture shows fully turned wheels on either side.
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