ThunderTiger Neptune! - RTR sub with video!

This page will review the ThunderTiger Neptune R/C submarine.

Here is some information from the manufacturer's website:

The NEPTUNE SB-1 submarine is the 1st underwater R/C model by Thunder Tiger. Equipped with high technology operating equipment in the inner hull tub, covered by the brilliantly yellow color outer hull, the NEPTUNE SB-1 will let you enjoy the otherwise hidden, underwater world.

Adopting a static diving system, operating the Neptune is just like the real thing. The system is driven by a ballast tank with pump & motor unit. Start the pump to induct the water into the ballast tank. Control the amount of water in the ballast tank, the submarine can dive from the surface and stay underwater in static. Using the propulsion power unit and full elevator and rudder control, you can drive the submarine graceful sailing underwater. Install a digital camera (optional) and you can watch the amazing underwater scenes.

Equipped with a auto-detect protecting system, if the system detects low battery power, low transmission signal, leakage, then the roll pump will auto start to flood the water out of the ballast tank to make the submarine float back to the surface.

There are 2 versions of SB-1 Submarine, 5220-F is the super combo version. All the necessary operating equipment already be included in the box and also fully assembly. Just open, then you can play this fantasy model immediately.

Displacement(mm / in.) 7.7kg surface, 7.95 kg submerged
Length(mm / in.) 774mm
Height(mm / in.) 285mm
Beam(mm / in.) 290mm
Draft(mm / in.) 200mm
Propeller 3 blades OD:40mm Pitch:41mm
Speed 1.45knots(2.7km/h) surface, 1.08knots(2km/h) subme
Operating Diving Depth(mm / in.) 5M
Max. Diving Depth(mm / in.) 10M (mechanical limit)
Propulsion Motor 12V motor

September 29, 2010

After reading about this model at great length on the forums, I decided that for the price, I needed to have one of these to play with.

I found one that was going for around $150 cheaper than retail price on eBay, so I snatched it up. A week later, it was in my shop and I was already taking it apart. I had plans for upgrades to this model that should improve run time and performance.

I started by replacing the 12V sealed lead acid battery with a higher capacity, but same sized version. I didn't want this to turn into a month long upgrade, so I elected to keep the swapout simple.

I moved on to adding a planetary gearbox for the prop. I found a 3:1 gearbox on Tower Hobbies site for $20. After installation, I decided that this was too much reduction, however its already in and I'm not swapping it out again!

I replaced the small stock propeller with something larger.

The last modification (for now) was to increase the size of the stock dive planes. To do this I simply added plastic extensions to the stock dive planes and painted them up.

The last thing that I did to it was to add a mounting bracket for my underwater camera. It simply velcro's into place. I am not a fan of wireless or wired video. I like to record in full HD video and simply download it after the run.

I'm hoping to take it to the lake soon to video some fish and turtles. Stay tuned!