Q. I'm looking for a steering servo for my TEKNO EB48 2.0 and am
hoping for a recommendation to run it on 6VDC. If you're not familiar
with it, it's a fast and fairly large 1/8 electric buggy. Thank you in
A. It's hard to say what's best for a comp buggy like an EB48 2.0
because everybody drives one differently. Since 1/8th scale buggies are
fun and versatile, they lend themselves to lots of uses beyond just
racing. Speaking of racing, Dustin Sparks shared this end of race day at
the track photo of his, which he equipped with a DS630 servo and if it
doesn't get the juices flowing, nothing will.
Choices, choices, choices!
First off, TEKNO
call for (300oz-in), and we offer 5 servos that exceed this on 6V (but
have seven servos in the lineup if you update your system so you can run
8.4V). And, if you not interested in spending for a new radio system
capable of using 8.4V then we also have a simple low-buck hack for using
6V in your rig while at the same time, powering the servo with 8.4V – clicking this link opens another tab with a brief article that explains. Anyway, these are the ProModeler servos for your 1/8th scale comp buggy.
- DS355CLHV - fast light, requires M2S adapter plate - 265oz-in on 6V
- DS360DLHV – cheapest, 270oz-in on 6V, good budget choice
- DS385CLHV - better because it's also bigger, faster, and has steel gears
- DS555BLHV - best because it's fast and has a bullet proof all-alloy case
- DS630BLHV – even better because it's 2X recommended torque
- DS930BLHV – 3X recommended torque because . . . mo betta!
- DS1155BLHV - best for bashing because of a ginormous steel gear train!
- is a mini-size servo. This means you'll also need a mini2standard
adapter plate to fit the rig. Why a mini? Because it shaves an ounce off
gross weight. If I need to explain this it's not the right servo for
Who needs it? Only an expert driver. Be honest with yourself before
buying this to save weight because everybody else is better off with a
standard size servo. Why? It's because of the physically larger gear
train of a standard size servo (more durable) as compared to the mini gear train that's physically smaller won't survive in the hands of a wannbe. Anyway, don't buy this,
tear it up and then come whinging to us because the gears broke.
Speaking of gears breaking, let's address this right now. We don't
make any unbreakable servos. None! The gears in the mini-class servo will
break around 450oz-in - considerably higher than the servo rating - but 'not'
more than you can backfeed back into it. Point being, these gears - like any gear train - can be broken,
and it doesn't mean they're defective just that they can be broken, capice?
Like I said, this mini is an interesting choice, but only for top racers, but probably not a good choice for local hotshoes interested in running a mini to save weight. Then again, it's your money, do whatever you want - just don't say we didn't warn you, OK?
- honestly, even if money were tight we'd recommend saving up before
using this one. Yes, it's a good solid servo. Yes, it's equipped with
dual ball bearings. Yes, it's got all metal gears. Yes, it's a 'good' choice and it'll work fine –
but - in all honestly, an 1/8th scale comp buggy deserves better.
Straight up, the only thing that recommends this servo is the price. Is
it better than some no-name import on Amazon? Well sure! But do yourself a
favor and save up. We have better servos for a comp buggy, trust us.
shocked we'd say this? You shouldn't be because you asked our advice and while it's worth every penny you
paid, it also means you're getting the unvarnished truth, e.g. the good, the bad, and the ugly. Bottom line? We're not going to blow smoke up your skirt just to sell a
lousy servo! Not who we are.
Look, any ProModeler servo is built better than a typical Asian
import whether you scored it off Amazon or a hobby shop. Heck, you don't need to be an engineer to figure it
out, you just need a set of eyes.
Basically, a lot of little details add up to make for
better value. Eyeball this image comparing our DS630 to a well regarded competitor, the SAVOX SB-2290SG to get a feel for how our servos are made versus the other guys because one thing is certain, if we don't show you the guts, e.g. what's hidden inside . . . they won't!
So there are many little things like our using 13 o-rings, plus Allen head bolts instead of
Phillips, and not just a 6061-T6 aircraft aluminum alloy center case,
but one that's been CNC- machined with cooling fins instead of being
cheaply extruded that make the difference in quality. BUT, you have to read the adverts carefully because that's where they
hide what's important, e.g. it's what they don't say, understand? Anyway,
along with all the other details, we also apply monkey snot on the PCB, which is a
pain in the ass but better protects your investment against shock and
These details are all part of what makes a ProModeler servo better (and
probably why you're looking at us for your next servo). Nevertheless,
the DS360 wouldn't be our first choice if this were our rig. Sure, at 6V
it makes about 270oz-in (close enough to meets the spirit of TEKNO's
300oz-in specs), and obviously, if you run it on 8.4V it makes 360oz-in,
which is more than they recommend, but while it's the first standard
size servo on the list, it's a good choice, it's not our first choice. There's a difference. Understand?
- straight up, the DS385CL is waaaay faster the DS360 (click this link
to read an article explaining about motors because we cut apart three different type of motors and explain what makes them different). This servo also has steel
gears, which are a much smarter choice for a rig. Bottom line? This is a 'better' choice for a comp buggy like the EB48 2.0 - especially for
Yes, it's also a little more pricey than a DS360 but this can't
be helped. And due to using a hybrid case, it's reasonably light, too.
This is our first recommendation for an 1/8th scale buggy for racing
and probably what I would select for my personal use if I were a pretty
good driver. However, I'm not a very good driver so honestly, I'd be better off with a tougher
design, one sporting an all-alloy case. But guess what? That's more
money! Se let's look at what I'd probably pick, the next servo, the DS555.
- the DS555 is probably the 'best' choice for most drivers. While it's
fast like the DS385 (and speed is what racers seek because it makes it
easier to beat the other guy when you're diving for the apex of a
corner), it's also got a more durable motor. Brushless motors are the
best. Full stop. But what makes it the best choice is the bronze-reinforced all-alloy case.
So add in an all-alloy case, and not an ordinary aircraft
aluminum case but one that's been bronze reinforced at the factory. This
makes it nearly bulletproof. Costs more money, again but it really is
the sweet-spot in the ProModeler lineup for 1/8th scale buggy racers. This is our best choice, but we have more options available. Next up is a beefier servo, the DS630.
has a lot more torque that TEKNO call for, more than 2X as much. Is it
worth the added price over a DS555? Dunno, depends. After all, there's a
time and a place when twice the recommended torque comes in handy.
Believe me, plenty of 1/8th scale comp buggies are running around with
the DS630 and these folks are quite happy and take note, if you really
are hamstrung with a 6V system, this servo is still making 445oz-in,
which is still 50% more than TEKNO call for. It's the kind of stump
pullin' torque that wins races when you're digging deep into a corner
and beating the other guy by the hundredths of a second that sometimes
make the difference between winning and also ran.
DS930BLHV - now you're
getting into extreme performance territory. Rated at more than 3X the
manufacturer's minimum spec, this servo is simply awesome. Even on 6V
it's making north of 700oz-in and this is a gracious plenty by 'any'
definition! Do you want silly amounts of torque? This is it.
DS1155BLHV - honestly, this servo
is the answer to a basher's wet dream because while the case isn't any
bigger than other standard size servos, the dog-leg design of the
transmission lets us fit bigger gears. How much bigger? About twice the
surface area of a conventional standard size servo with the transmission section. Bigger gears reduces
working pressures by half, shock loads also cut in half. Result? More durable gears!
the larger gears are the defining mechanical characteristics between
the DS1155 and pretty much anything else available to the market at any price and
the DS1155 is - without question - the best standard size servo we know
how to make.
Yeah, some people will look at the difference in price
between good, better, and best, then see how much this puppy costs and
blink. We understand because there's no two ways about it, it's pricey,
but then again, it's the best in the world. But guess what? You can still break the gears because nothing on this planet is unbreakable! This is our best. Period.
So for an 1/8th scale comp buggy on the race course, our DS385 or DS555 are really great choices. If you're bashing you're going to want more torque but then you need to reach deeper into
your wallet. Is what it is.
We'll close with this observation. Re-read
what Dustin Sparks said in passing about the DS630 in his EB48 and take note he
mentioned having used the servo in other rigs. The important thing to
take away from this is a simple lesson being shared by an experienced racer; your servos are a capital
investment so instead of one-and-done, they can be repurposed as your
Our advice? Take his words of wisdom into account because it's the defining
difference between wannabes and pros. Pros are always thinking ahead,
whether it's for gaining an advantage entering the next corner or
thinking about what may be coming down the pike rig-wise in future.
Ultimately, the Boy Scouts had it right with . . . be prepared.