EXO Terra Buggy Build Tips: Motor Mount

By AR on Mar 21, 2012

The Axial EXO Terra buggy includes a very unique motor mount.  The adjustable mesh screw and the dovetail groove are both unique designs for ease of adjustment and maximum holding strength with minimal effort.

Lets go over the basic installation and assembly of the motor mount.

Step 1: With the motor mounted onto the slide use this screw to adjust your mesh.  You can slowly adjust the mesh as you tighten or loosen this screw, once set you will be able to remove the slide with the motor attached and install it again into the same exact position. Use a 2.5mm allen driver for this adjustment screw.

Step 2: Once the mesh is set install the M4 set screw in the top of the motor mount.  Do not tighten this screw all the way down yet.  Use a 2.0mm allen driver here.

Step 3: Continue tightening this set screw, you will feel the screw stop once it hits the motor mount slide shown by the green arrow on the step 3 image above.

Step 4: Once the screw has touched the motor mount slide you only need to turn it another 1/4 turn.  Or 90*.  This will snug up quickly and lock the motor slide into place.  Over tightening this set screw will cause damage to the motor mount or the motor mount slide.  1/4 turn is all you need here.


Here is an image from Step 22 in the EXO Kit manual.  You will see the slide attached to the motor, and the motor mount attached to the chassis.

**Worried that the extra 1/4 turn past snug isn’t enough?  Here is why it works.

The Motor Mount has a male dovetail, while the motor slide that the motor mount attaches to has a female dovetail.  When the M4 setscrew is tightened you are not only applying pressure to the point of the set screw, but also to the entire surface of that dovetail.  This increased surface area means you have that much more material holding the motor slide into place. Trust the surface area! Over tightening the set screw will actually decrease this surface area and potentially break the mount. AGAIN, DO NOT OVER TIGHTEN!

Here is an image of the added surfaces from the dovetail.  This is holding the motor mount slide into place.  Keep in mind these surfaces are on the front and back.


  1. Default_avatar adrian ortiz Posted on 2012-03-22 06:10:11


  2. Default_avatar 03CobraMan Posted on 2012-03-22 08:30:22

    Great tip, thanks guys!

  3. Default_avatar Thom K Posted on 2012-03-22 11:00:13

    Great explanation; thanks!

  4. Default_avatar Vern Posted on 2012-03-23 09:14:47

    kinda of late for me i over tighten mine before this blog came out and put a hole right through mine.Thank god they supplied a plastic one in the kit…..
    Also the 4 set screws for the front steering knuckles,when screwed in the plastic expands a bit and looks like a potential place for it to crack….

  5. Default_avatar Chris Posted on 2012-03-29 19:05:41

    This is crucial. I wish the instructions were so good. I tightened mine down hard in the wrong place and created a divot in the motor mount. Now the gears crunch and I can’t adjust it because the screw keeps falling into the divot. I contacted axial and they are going to send me another mount but damn, how frustrating. Hopefully everybody building an EXO reads this.

  6. Default_avatar Jim Westfall Posted on 2012-03-30 04:50:31

    I tried this before and my motor still kept backing off. So I drilled & tapped another hole next to the factory set screw and got into the fat part of the motor’s mount. Now it won’t back off & I can crank it down tight without any worries.

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