By Brat Attacks
The car that defines the 80's decade in the automotive world of R/C. We all had Frogs or all wanted a Frog and it didn't take long for us to realise that the wing sticker "No Guts No Glory!" was just a marketing ploy and pushed us on take it the fringes of destruction.
As a replacement for the SRB's, the ORV's (Brat, Lancia, Frog) were leaps and bounds ahead of them in development. The light weight construction meant they were faster and with R/C racing becoming an international sport, there was soon a host of upgrades from other makers for the car.
The only backward step Tamiya took was in the front suspension set up. Always a tricky thing to get right and the re-release has done away with the rubber bush in the front radius arm. With it in place the front damping was done mainly by the tires and little else.
The gearbox is a well known problem area for the Frog and its sister cars and apart from locking up the diff with chemical metal, it was a case of shim it or "shut up and put up" It's interesting to note that only the FAV and Wild One had problems with these gears. The other cars in the range to use the die-cast bevel gears (Boomerang, Hot Shot, Super Sabre etc) never had this kind of problem.
Out of the box the Frog was a real hoot to drive around. It took so much abuse that you were never left feeling disappointed and you knew that in 16 hours time when your batteries had charged it would be ready for some more action. Total annihilation was something the Frog didn't know about. If you were ever so unlucky you would get the odd broken rear trailing arm and...erm...still thinking...had something...nope...no that was it. Oh yes, a broken body just around the rear mount holes. Even this didn't detract from its looks and it was never a major cause for keeping the Frog in the sick bay.
It's not hard to see why the Frog holds such iconic status when compared with the other cars from Tamiya at the time. The Hornet did have the advantage of being faster but it didn't handle as effectively as the Frog and had weak points. The Wild One had weak components and was too tail happy. Only the new range of 4wd buggies were a real threat to its podium holding position which in itself isn't much to be afraid of. Newer buggies that came out after the Frog where never much of a match to its supremacy. l would go as far to say that only the Falcon was a real match to it in the 2wd stakes until the launch of the Astute but that itself is an entirely different car.
The only real vice with the Frog was, did you have the balls to paint it pink??