;e Bigwig was the first and last Tamiya car to get this unusual feature—
well, unusual for RC cars, anyway; it used to be a staple of full-size car
advertising. Instead of an arm, the servo gets a barrel-shaped extension
with gear teeth on the end (and an integrated servo saver) that mesh
with the sliding steering rack. Bellows seal the greased rack, and the
system operates with a 1:1 ratio. In action, it feels like “regular” steering, as
long as you don’t skimp on the servo.
The unusual flying-buttress
shock towers hold the shocks
CLASSIC CVA SHOCKS
;e Bigwig was among the first Tamiya models to get the now-classic CVA
design, which has been emulated by countless other brands. ;ey work as
well here as they ever have and continue to do so today on other Tamiya
models. As for the rest of the suspension, it’s a little goofy. Other than front
toe-in, nothing is adjustable. ;e front shocks are mounted close to the
inboard hingepins and are nearly vertical, making the suspension very soft.
And instead of C-hubs and kingpins, the steering arms are mounted on pivot
balls captured by metal plates. But hey, it was 1986, and “more complex”
meant “better” back then. By comparison, the rear-suspension geometry is
pretty standard but nonadjustable.
Tamiya doesn’t herald its designers much, which is why you’ve
probably never heard of Fumito Taki, designer of the Bigwig and many
other historic Tamiya models. But back in 1986, Tamiya was excited
about the man they tapped to design the Bigwig’s body: Takuya Yura.
Takuya is a celebrated designer of full-size vehicles, ranging from race
cars to yachts, and is the founder of the Mooncraft company, whose
logo is on the Bigwig’s
wing. For the Bigwig,
Yura-san focused on
the car’s aerodynamics
the massive rear wing
and sharply angled
side pods. ;e Bigwig
is also among the first
RC cars to wear dish
wheels, another nod to
In a world of bellcranks,
the Bigwig’s true rack-and-pinion steering is a
Takuya Yura, then and now—from the box art.
Now that’s a huge hub carrier!
The three-lobed hub can be
replaced by a standard 12mm
hex if you want to fit the Bigwig
with different wheels.
Pivot balls captured by steel plates
articulate the steering hubs.
More artwork from the box, drawn and painted by hand.