Thundershot

The Thundershot chassis is named after the first model released for sale that used this chassis:

– Thunder Shot, model number 58067 released for sale in 1987 and available on the market until 1991
– Thunder Dragon, model number 58073 released for sale in 1988 and available on the market until 1992
– Terra Scorcher, model number 58075 put up for sale in 1988 and available on the market until 1992
– Fire Dragon, model number 58078 put up for sale in 1989 and available on the market until 1992

In addition, a complete kit with remote control, battery, battery charger and on-board electronics was released for sale for this chassis. The selling price of the complete model was almost 3 times the selling price of the basic model:
– Thundershot, model number 57001 released for sale in 1987 and available on the market until 1988

The ‘dragon’ series is inspired by a famous Japanese manga comic book ‘Radicon Boy’. The models are based on the cars driven by the protagonist.

For Tamiya, this chassis is the calling card for enthusiasts approaching the world of four-wheel drive radio-controlled machines.

There are several advertisements that Tamiya or the various importers around the world have published in trade magazines, in the image below is an example for Thunder Shot.

Tamiya remains true to its design philosophy and the four models are related to each other while maintaining some differences in some parts, the main features of this chassis moving from the front to the rear are:

– independent front suspension with overlapping arms and single C.V.A. torsion bar for Thunder Shot and Thunder Dragon (left in the picture). Independent superimposed-arm front suspension with a double C.V.A. torsion bar for Terra Scorcher and Fire Dragon (right in picture). The upper arm is I-shaped and the lower arm is H-shaped.

– Fixed-length front suspension system upper arm for Thunder Shot, Thunder Dragon and Fire Dragon (left in picture, arm highlighted in red). Adjustable front suspension system upper arm for Terra Scorcher (right in picture, adjustable arm highlighted in blue).

– Hub for unreinforced steering system spindle for Thunder Shot, Terra Scorcher and Fire Dragon (left in picture, hub highlighted in red). Reinforced steering system spindle hub for Thunder Dragon (right in picture, hub highlighted in grey).

The very first Thunder Shot series had the front steering arms with two holes (highlighted in red in the picture) which later became one for all the family (highlighted in blue in the picture). We can therefore distinguish between an Mk1 and an MK2. The rear hubs of the Mk1 also have two holes, see the section on rear hubs.

– Pivot joint for the four axles on Thunder Shot, Thunder Dragon and Fire Dragon (left in picture). Cardan joint for the four axles on Terra Scorcher (right in picture).

– Hot Shot derived transmission setup; 4-wheel transmission with front differential and rear differential housing the motor. The rear differential shell, front differential shell, transmission and central chassis are designed by Tamiya especially for this family, Terra Scorcher model is shown in the picture,
– double wishbone front steering system, a first for Tamiya.

– the central shell of the chassis is open towards the top to allow better inspection of the electronics. Pictured is the Terra Scorcher model,

– Double-arm rear suspension with double shock absorber without torsion bar for Thunder Shot, Thunder Dragon and Fire Dragon (left in picture). Stacked-arm rear suspension with double shock absorber with torsion bar for Terra Scorcher (right in picture, torsion bar highlighted in blue). The upper arm is I-shaped and the lower arm is H-shaped.

– Fixed-length rear suspension system upper arm for Thunder Shot, Thunder Dragon and Fire Dragon (left in picture, arm highlighted in red). Adjustable rear suspension system upper arm for Terra Scorcher (right in picture, adjustable arm highlighted in blue).

– Unreinforced rear hub for Thunder Shot, Terra Scorcher and Fire Dragon (left in picture, hub highlighted in red). Reinforced rear hub for Thunder Dragon (right in picture, hub highlighted in grey).
The Thunder Dragon hub was also installed in the early Thunder Shot MK1 models.

– Suspension arms part D have changed shape and designation slightly; Thunder Shot and Thunder Dragon install the factory code 10005303 which becomes 10005347 for Terra Scorcher and Fire Dragon. On the Terra Scorcher and Fire Dragon models a reinforcement is added to make the arm stiffer, highlighted by the red arrow in the picture.

– different body attachments to the chassis; rear towers for Thunder Shot, Thunder Dragon and Fire Dragon (left in picture, towers highlighted in red). Rear plate for Terra Scorcher (right in picture, towers highlighted in blue).

Re-releases

From 2005 to the present day (2024), the Thundershot chassis has been used in several re-releases:

– Thunder Shot, model number 58361 put on sale in 2005 and available on the market until 2007,
– Fire Dragon, model number 58403 put on sale in 2008 and available on the market until 2011,
– Terra Scorcher, model number 47442 put on sale in 2020 and available on the market until 2021,
– Fire Dragon, model number 47457 put on sale in 2020 and available on the market until 2022,
– Thunder Dragon, model number 47458 put on sale in 2021 and available on the market until 2022,
– Saint Dragon, model number 47459 put on sale in 2022 and available on the market until 2023. In this case, Tamiya introduced a new body,
– Thunder Shot, model number 58706 put on sale in 2022 and available on the market until 2023.

The differences between the original version and the re-releases are minimal, the biggest difference being the introduction of the electronic speed control that takes

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