Traxxas stability management (TSM) is an automatic stabilization feature on new Traxxas cars and trucks. TSM helps keep your car under control when driving on slippery surfaces like gravel, loose dirt, or snow. If you are still asking what is Traxxas TSM, this post will cover all the details.
Traxxas stability management uses sophisticated sensors and software to make small adjustments to the car's steering. Traxxas engineers have perfected the TSM software and fine-tuned each model's stability algorithms.
For example, when you power through a turn, the TSM will sense when the car starts to fishtail, and the system will automatically adjust steering. The minor steering adjustments help keep the car under control and driving forward as fast as possible.
Stability management isn't one of those "nice to have" features. It improves the overall experience I get when driving my cars on loose surfaces. You get this "connected" feeling between your transmitter and car that makes driving more enjoyable!
Let's dive into the nitty-gritty of the Traxxas stability management system
What is Traxxas TSM?
The TSM is a sensor on your car. It helps keep the car under control when using full-throttle on loose or slippery surfaces and improves control during hard-breaking situations.
The system combines precision electronic components and software to detect and correct the vehicle’s forward motion on more challenging surfaces.
Data collected by the TSM sensor slightly adjusts the steering input when it detects the car is losing control. TSM works on surfaces such as rock, gravel, pavement, or even ice and snow!
Stability management systems are great for new drivers that are still learning what their car can and can't do. It gently nudges your steering so you don't wreck your brand-new car.
What Parts Do I Need For Traxxas TSM?
For Traxxas TSM to work on your vehicle, you will need a TSM ready transmitter and receiver. The transmitter is the radio unit you hold in your hand and use to steer and throttle the vehicle.
Traxxas TSM Transmitter
The transmitter is a piece of hardware that is installed inside your car's chassis. It controls the throttle, breaking, and steering for your RC vehicle. TSM enabled receivers have special gyroscopic sensors that will detect when your car starts to lose control and correct the steering automatically. The car does not drive itself, but gently nudges the steering to help keep the car under complete control.
Traxxas TSM Receiver
If you want the total package that includes the transmitter, receiver, and link wireless module, check out the combo package below on Amazon:
How Does Traxxas TSM work?
The TSM works by automatically adding counter steering if the car's back end starts to slide or fishtail. When the sensor detects that the car is starting to fishtail or slide out, it nudges the steering to correct the car's direction. TSM can't fix everything, but It does a great job keeping your car on all four wheels.
Have you ever started sliding on snow or ice in your full-size car? When the car starts to slide, you gently turn toward the direction your car is sliding.
The TSM system does the same thing, but automatically.
You will notice that the TSM shines when you are transitioning from concrete to gravel or going through a turn with a lot of loose dirt. The car stays locked in and drives forward in complete control.
How to Set up TSM using Traxxas Link app
You can adjust the settings of the TSM by connecting your car to the Traxxas Link mobile app. However, the multi-function knob on the TQi transmitter can also adjust the TSM gain, but you may want to program the knob to control another feature. It depends on how you program the multi-function knob in the Link app.
Before you can use the Traxxas Link app, make sure you have a Traxxas TQi transmitter that is equipped with the TQi Link Wireless Module.
My latest Traxxas Slash model came with a TQi transmitter, but it DID NOT come with the wireless module. So, to use the Traxxas Link app, I had to buy the wireless module separately and install it on my transmitter. Do note that the transmitter has a place for the wireless module. All you have to do it buy it and install it.
Setting up the Traxxas Link App
First, install the Traxxas link application onto your Android or iOS device. Next, follow this guide to link your TQi transmitter to the Traxxas link app.
The app has a dashboard, various car models, and software profiles. Each car will have a specific software load with custom-tuned TSM settings.
The app will tell the multi-function knob to control the TSM settings on the receiver. The Traxxas Link app helps you have more granular control over your car's TSM settings and provides the best performance results.
If you bought a Traxxas vehicle with a TQi transmitter included, it might come preloaded with the correct TSM settings for that model. It doesn't hurt to pair your transmitter to the link app and see what settings you are using.
Traxxas TSM calibration
The easiest way to adjust the TSM sensitivity, turn the multi-function knob on the TQi transmitter. You do not have to stop driving the car to adjust the stability management gain.
The knob has a range of 0 to 100 percent gain. The higher the gain, the more correction the TSM will apply to the steering servo.
You can easily see what TSM does by testing your car with the multi-function knob at 0 and then again at 100% gain.
What I have notices on my Slash is that the car will wobble at high speeds on paved surfaces if TSM is turned up to high. This shows that TSM really works best on loose surfaces.
The TQi transmitter user manual says that the recommended gain is 50%. Start testing the TSM by setting the multi-function knob in the middle of the range.
The TSM multi-function knob is something you have to experiment with to find the sweet spot. Take a few laps and try to get the back end to break loose. If you notice the car spinning out, increase the gain until you are comfortable with the car's driving performance.
Different surfaces may benefit from a higher or lower gain setting. As I mentioned previously, it's quick and harmless to adjust the gain while driving the car.
Some drivers don't want automated driving assistance, and Traxxas has provided an easy solution with the gain dial right on the transmitter. By turning the multi-function knob to the zero position, you disable the TSM system entirely. With TSM completely off, steer with the throttle for controlled power slides.
Traxxas TSM on paved surfaces
When going full-throttle on paved surfaces, my cars tend to track very straight with TSM enabled. I like to run my Traxxas Slash TSM gain at 40% on paved surfaces.
When I turn TSM down too low or up too high, it seems like the car has a bit of a wobble at full throttle.
Again, TSM shines best on loose surfaces. So when I am doing speed runs on the open pavement, I tend to turn the TSM down a little bit using the knob on the transmitter.
Traxxas TSM driving through turns
The TSM module will assist the driver when maneuvering through sharp turns. As soon as the back end starts to cut loose, you can tell the TSM starts to counter-steer to help keep the car from washing out.
When driving my Slash on dirt, I usually turn the gain up more than on pavement. I usually set the dial to about 50 or 55%.
Please note that the TSM settings are entirely up to you. You may like more or less gain. Play with it and write down your preferred settings for each surface you drive on.
Is Traxxas TSM worth it?
I hope it is clear that the TSM system adds more stabilization to your RC vehicle. When you are bashing or driving on slick surfaces, TSM makes driving a lot more fun.
Key benefits of the Traxxas TSM system are:
- Never restricts throttle input
- Adds stability control when driving on loose dirt
- It helps prevent crashes (it's not going to stop crashes completely)
- The Stability control unit allows for faster cornering speeds
- No setup is required
- Can be adjusted or turned entirely off
- You can add it to any RC model, not just Traxxas brands
The TSM also enhances efficient cornering because the driver can accelerate at will with the confidence of improved control. The Traxxas stability management kicks in when you start to power through turns and the wheels start to slip, and you can safely add throttle without completely losing control or rolling over.
In addition, You can hit the breaks hard, and the TSM will keep the car tame and in your control.
FAQs For What Is Traxxas TSM
Can I turn Traxxas TSM Off?
Yes. By turning the multi-function knob on your Traxxas transmitter counterclockwise, you reduce the TSM sensitivity. By turning the knob all the way counterclockwise, it shuts the system off entirely.The best part about the TQi and TSM link is that you don't have to stop driving the car to make adjustments. If you want it TSM off, you can immediately turn it off. If you think you need a little bit of TSM, turn the knob clockwise until you are happy with the driving performance.
Is Traxxas TSM Worth It?
Traxxas TSM is worth the time and money, especially for beginner drivers. TSM will help keep your car under control when driving at high speeds and on loose surfaces like gravel or dirt. TSM could help prevent roll overs and crashes that may break parts and require maintenance.
What Is Traxxas TSM Conclusion
The Traxxas TSM is a driving assistant for your RC car. It was designed to help keep the car under control while flying around the race track. Whether you are a veteran RC driver or just starting out, TSM can be configured so you get top-notch performance out of your RC car.
At the end of the day, we drive RC cars to have fun and relax after a hard day. Traxxas stability management will give you the confidence to hammer the throttle blast around the race track.