Remote control excavators, also known as RC excavators, allow construction enthusiasts to operate scaled-down versions of real excavating machinery. With features like bucket scoops, booms, and outriggers, these radio-controlled models provide all the digging, lifting, and hauling fun of operating the real thing. In this guide, we’ll highlight some of the best RC excavators on the market for hobbyists and collectors. From large scale models to more compact designs, we’ll explore key features like proportional controls, metal tracks, and realistic sounds. Whether you’re looking for a high-end collector’s piece or just want an affordable excavator that can really dig, read on for recommendations on the best RC excavators available today.

List of the Best RC Excavators

Check out the thorough review of the best RC excavators below.

1. Full Metal Adult RC Hydraulic Excavator

1. Full Metal Adult RC Hydraulic Excavator

The Full Metal Adult RC Hydraulic Excavator Truck is a high-quality remote control construction vehicle designed for hobbyists and enthusiasts. With its robust metal construction and powerful 2000mAh rechargeable battery, this 1:14 scale excavator delivers an authentic experience. Users can operate the precision 23-channel remote to control all functions, including the fully rotational cab, movable arm, bucket, and outriggers.

This impressive toy boasts a digging power of 1.1 lbs per cubic inch and can lift up to 180 lbs. Additionally, it features realistic design details like smoke emission, headlights, and engine sounds for immersive play. With a quick 2-3 hour charging time, users get 45-50 minutes of digging, lifting, and loading action. At 23 pounds, this large-scale excavator makes a great gift for adults and kids ages 15 and up.

Pros And Cons

  • Powerful motor and robust metal construction

  • Long battery life provides 45-50 mins of play

  • Precise 23-channel remote with full excavator functions

  • Realistic details like smoke, lights, sound

  • Large 1:14 scale good for adults and kids 15+

  • Expensive price point

2. 1:14 Scale RC Excavator for Adults

2. 1:14 Scale RC Excavator for Adults

Upgrade your RC construction vehicle collection with the Huina 1593 1:14 Scale Fully Functional 22 Channel Remote Control Excavator. This new and improved model boasts metal gears, a 360-degree rotating cab, and an alloy metal bucket for enhanced durability and performance. Powered by a robust 7.4V 1200mAh rechargeable Li-ion battery, users can operate the precision remote control up to 100 feet away and complete simultaneous, realistic movements like digging, lifting, and dumping.

The three separate digging arm motors allow for independent joint control. Vivid excavator sounds and LED lights further immerse users in real construction site action. Made from quality materials like military grade rubber tracks that grip terrain, this RC excavator can traverse gravel, dirt, and shallow water with ease.

Pros And Cons

  • Upgrade with metal gears and alloy bucket

  • Powerful battery provides up to 30 mins runtime

  • 22 channel remote with 100 ft range

  • Realistic sounds and lights for immersion

  • Quality materials and traction performance

  • 4 hour charging time for 30 mins use

3. 1:20 RC Caterpillar 330D L Hydraulic Excavator

3. 1:20 RC Caterpillar 330D L Hydraulic Excavator

Bring the jobsite to life with the Diecast Masters 1:20 Scale RC Truck Cat 330D L Hydraulic Excavator, featuring precise detailing and advanced functionality. This officially licensed Caterpillar replica boasts genuine CAT yellow paint, accurate decor, and a signature “Power Edge” trade dress modeled after real 2006-2008 machines. The remote control excavator realistically mimics full-size excavator movements including the boom, stick, bucket, and 360-degree cab rotation for digging, lifting, and dumping.

Users can control the precision movements up to 150 feet away as the rc excavator truck traverses a jobsite thanks to all-wheel drive, steering, traction control and catepillar sounds. Constructed from durable diecast metal and high-quality plastic, this 1:20 scale rc construction vehicle makes an immersive, high-performing addition to any collectors fleet.

Pros And Cons

  • Precise 1:20 scale replica with authentic details

  • All-wheel drive and controls mimic real excavator

  • Durable diecast metal/plastic construction

  • Caterpillar licensed with trademark sounds

  • 150 ft remote control range

  • Expensive collectors price point

4. 1:24 RC Caterpillar 336 Excavator

4. 1:24 RC Caterpillar 336 Excavator

Bring realistic excavation action home with the Diecast Masters 1:24 Scale RC Truck CAT 336 Excavator, featuring precise CAT detailing and advanced controllability. This licensed Caterpillar replica delivers authenticity with genuine CAT yellow paint, accurate graphics, and realistic light and sound effects. The full-function radio remote control allows users to mimic real-life movements including the bucket, arm, and cab rotation to dig, lift, and dump.

With a robust metal and plastic design, this 1:24 scale rc construction vehicle replica provides durability for indoor or outdoor play. An automated demo mode cycles through the excavator movements for a mesmerizing display piece. While an impressive collectible, occasional issues with the remote connection are noted.

Pros And Cons

  • Precise 1:24 scale replica with genuine CAT details

  • Remote control of bucket, arm, cab, lights and sounds

  • Durable diecast metal/plastic construction

  • Automated demo mode for display

  • Impressive control range of 100+ feet

  • Not meant for digging into dirt

5. BNAM 1:14 RC Excavator Toy for Kids

5. BNAM 1:14 RC Excavator Toy for Kids

Bring realistic construction site action home with the BNAM 1:14 Scale Remote Control Excavator Toy, featuring metal upgrades and advanced functionality. This uniquely designed RC excavator delivers an authentic experience with its metal shovel and gearing, plus 6 independent motors to control digging arm movements. The precision 2.4GHz remote allows control up to 130 feet away as users mimic real excavator movements like lifting, lowering, and 680-degree cab rotation.

LED lights and sounds further immerse kids ages 3-15 in construction fun. Made from durable alloy metal and plastic, this radio control truck model provides long-lasting play indoors or outdoors. It can scoop and haul sand, mud and small stones for interactive digging adventures.

Pros And Cons

  • Metal shovel and gears upgrade durability

  • 6 motors control digging arm movement

  • 2.4GHz remote with 130 ft range

  • Lights and sounds add realism

  • Not meant for heavy duty digging

6. Mould King RC Excavator Building Set for Kids

6. Mould King RC Excavator Building Set for Kids

Bring the construction site home with the Mould King 13112 RC Excavator Building Set, featuring 1830 pieces for kids to assemble their own remote control excavator. This STEM toy allows kids to build a 1:24 scale replica with a 360-degree rotating cab, flexible arm and shovel, plus durable tracks for terrain travel. Once assembled, the RC excavator can be controlled via the included remote or a mobile app for interactive digging adventures.

With simple programming options, kids can customize the excavator’s automated movements. The numbered bag kit is designed for easy assembly with detailed instructions suitable for ages 8 and up. Constructing their own RC vehicle gives kids a sense of accomplishment while developing patience, creativity, and problem-solving skills.

Pros And Cons

  • 1830 pieces for kids to build RC excavator

  • Remote and app control options

  • Features movable cab, arm, shovel

  • Promotes STEM skills

  • Easy numbered bag assembly

  • Takes time and patience to assemble

7. LAEGENDARY 1:14 RC Excavator Toy for Kids

7. LAEGENDARY 1:14 RC Excavator Toy for Kids

Bring realistic construction site action home with the LAEGENDARY 1:14 Scale RC Excavator, featuring hobby-grade power and maneuverability. This high-performance remote control excavator delivers versatile off-road fun with 3 independent motors to control the bucket, arm, and 680-degree rotating cab. Users can precisely dig, lift, and dump in any direction thanks to the proportional 22-channel controller.

Whether traversing sand, concrete, rocks or more, the all-terrain treads provide stability while the strong alloy bucket scoops through material. Weighing in at 13 lbs, this hobby-grade excavator brings impressive heft and durability to backyard construction projects.

Pros And Cons

  • Hobbyist-grade with 3 motors for control

  • Rotating cab and all-terrain treads

  • 22-channel remote with precision

  • Durable 13 lb design

  • Quality materials and build

  • Issues noted on uneven terrain

8. Fisca RC Excavator Toy for Kids

8. Fisca RC Excavator Toy for Kids

Bring realistic construction fun home with the fisca 15 Channel 2.4GHz Remote Control Excavator, featuring metal upgrades and advanced maneuverability. This 1:14 scale rc excavator delivers versatile play with its metal shovel and 15 channels to control forward, reverse, turning, lights, sounds and more. The three separate arm motors allow independent control of the shovel, elbow and body for precision digging.

A 680-degree rotating cab coupled with sturdy caterpillar treads traverse various terrains. Made from quality plastic and electronics, this 13 inch excavator provides durability for kids’ backyard construction adventures. An automatic demo mode adds to the realism.

Pros And Cons

  • Metal shovel upgrades durability

  • 15 channels and 3 arm motors for control

  • Rotating cab and 360-degree steering

  • Quality plastic/electronic construction

  • Minor durability issues on rough terrain

9. Mostop RC Excavator Toy for Kids

9. Mostop RC Excavator Toy for Kids

Bring the construction site home with the Mostop 15 Channel 2-in-1 Remote Control Excavator, featuring metal attachments and versatile controls. This 1:14 scale RC excavator offers 15 channels to manage forward, reverse, turning, arm and bucket movements, lights, and sounds for realistic digging adventures. The metal bucket and grabber are interchangeable for added play variety.

Users can precisely rotate the 680-degree cab and manipulate the arms and bucket thanks to tri-motors and 2.4GHz remote control. Durable rubber treads provide traction even on rough terrain. With two 7.4V rechargeable batteries, kids get up to 25 minutes of rugged, construction fun. Interior detailing and a character figurine enhance immersion and imagination.

Pros And Cons

  • 2-in-1 metal bucket and grabber

  • 15 channels and tri-motors for control

  • Detailed cab interior with character

  • Rechargeable batteries for 25 min runtime

  • Minor durability concerns noted

Which Features Should You Look for in an RC Excavator?

1. Build Quality and Materials

Durability: One of the first things to consider is the build quality of the RC excavator. Look for models made from high-quality, durable materials such as metal or high-grade plastic. Metal components, especially in the bucket, arm, and tracks, add to the longevity and realistic feel of the excavator.

Construction: Pay attention to the overall construction of the excavator. A well-built model will have secure joints and a solid frame, minimizing the risk of parts breaking or wearing out quickly.

2. Scale and Size

Scale: RC excavators come in various scales, typically ranging from 1:50 to 1:12. The scale you choose depends on your space and preference for realism. Larger scales (e.g., 1:12) provide more detailed features and a more immersive experience.

Size: Consider where you will be using the excavator. For indoor use, a smaller model might be more appropriate, whereas larger models are better suited for outdoor use where they can handle rougher terrain and heavier loads.

3. Functionality and Control

Movement Capabilities: A good RC excavator should mimic the movements of a real excavator. Look for models that offer 360-degree rotation, realistic arm movement (up, down, digging), and a functioning bucket. Some advanced models also include features like tilting cabs and extendable arms.

Control System: The quality of the control system is crucial for a smooth operation. Ensure the remote control is user-friendly and responsive. More advanced models may offer proportional controls, which allow for more precise movement.

Channels: The number of channels on the remote control indicates the number of functions the excavator can perform simultaneously. More channels mean more realistic and complex operations. For example, a 15-channel RC excavator can control the cab rotation, arm movement, bucket tilt, and track movement independently.

4. Battery Life and Power

Battery Type: Most RC excavators use either NiMH or LiPo batteries. LiPo batteries typically offer longer run times and better performance but may require more careful handling and charging. NiMH batteries are more straightforward to use and charge.

Run Time: Consider the battery life and how long the excavator can operate on a single charge. Longer run times are preferable, especially for extended play sessions. Look for models that offer at least 30-45 minutes of continuous operation.

Charging Time: Check how long it takes to recharge the battery. Shorter charging times are more convenient and allow for more frequent use.

5. Realism and Detail

Sound and Light Effects: Many RC excavators come with sound effects that mimic the engine noise and operational sounds of a real excavator. Some models also feature working lights, which add to the realism, especially in low-light conditions.

Detailed Design: The level of detail in the design can significantly enhance the overall experience. Look for features like a detailed cab, realistic tracks, and accurately scaled components.

6. Weight and Stability

Weight Distribution: A well-balanced RC excavator will be more stable and easier to control. Heavier models with a low center of gravity tend to be more stable, especially when operating on uneven terrain.

Stability Features: Some models come with added stability features, such as weighted tracks or a broader base, to prevent tipping over during operation.

7. Ease of Maintenance

Replacement Parts: Check if the manufacturer provides easy access to replacement parts. This is important for maintaining your RC excavator over time, as some parts may wear out or break with use.

Ease of Access: Look for models designed with easy access to the internal components. This makes it simpler to perform maintenance and repairs when necessary.

8. Price and Warranty

Budget: Determine your budget before shopping. While higher-end models offer more features and better build quality, there are also many affordable options that provide a good balance of functionality and cost.

Warranty: Consider models that come with a warranty or guarantee. A warranty can provide peace of mind and protect your investment in case of defects or issues.

How to Choose the Best RC Excavator for Your Needs?

Remote control (RC) excavators are a fun way to move dirt and dig holes without the need for heavy equipment. Choosing the right RC excavator for your needs and budget can be tricky with so many options on the market. This guide will walk you through the key factors to consider when selecting the best RC excavator for you.

Determine How You’ll Use It

The first step is thinking about how you plan to use your RC excavator. Consider the following:

  • Yardwork and landscaping: Smaller, more affordable models are ideal for moving piles of dirt, digging holes for plants, and doing minor landscaping jobs. Look for a lighter-weight excavator in the 15-30 pound range.
  • Large construction projects: For bigger jobs like digging trenches or moving large amounts of soil, look for a high-powered excavator in the 50+ pound range with metal tracks for maximum traction.
  • As a hobby: If you just want an RC excavator for fun, there are affordable models that still have good remote reach and bucket rotation for playing around in the dirt.

Compare Size and Scale

RC excavators come in a range of scales from 1:20 to 1:14 to 1:8. The larger the scale, the bigger and more powerful the excavator.

  • 1:20 scale: Smallest excavators, best for indoor use and minor outdoor projects. About 6-12 inches long.
  • 1:14 scale: Medium-sized excavators, suitable for most residential landscaping tasks. Around 12-18 inches long.
  • 1:8 scale: Large excavators approaching 2 feet long that can handle big jobs. Require more space to run them.

Match the scale to the work you want to complete. Bigger is not always better if you don’t need the power.

Evaluate Features and Performance

Look at key specifications when comparing excavator models:

  • Bucket rotation: Check the degree of rotation – 180+ degrees allows more flexibility.
  • Reach: Longer reach extends your digging capabilities. 25-35 inches is ideal.
  • Battery life: Rechargeable battery-powered models should operate 30+ minutes per charge.
  • Motor: Dual motors provide more power and traction. Go brushless if possible.
  • Tracks vs wheels: Metal tracks offer the most stability and traction, especially for outdoor use.
  • Controls: 2-stick models provide the most precise control. Trigger steering takes practice.

Factor in Your Budget

RC excavators range widely in price from $50 for basic entry-level models to over $500 for large professional-grade machines. Set a budget and find the best excavator you can afford in that range.

Consider ready-to-run (RTR) models as they come with everything you need at a lower price. DIY kits allow more customization but require assembly.

By carefully assessing your needs, comparing specs and features, and sticking to your budget, you can pick out the ideal RC excavator. With the right model, you’ll be happily digging away in no time.

FAQs When Picking the Best RC Excavator

What size RC excavator is best for me?

The size you need depends on how you plan to use it. Mini excavators in 1:20 or 1:14 scale, around 6-18 inches long, are great for indoor use, landscaping, and smaller projects. For digging trenches, moving large amounts of dirt, or construction projects, look for a 1:8 scale excavator. These are much bigger, approaching 2 feet long, for heavy-duty work. Make sure to factor in space to operate it safely.

What features should I look for in an RC excavator?

Prioritize bucket rotation, reach, battery life, motor power, tracks vs wheels, and controls. Look for 180+ degree bucket rotation, 25+ inch reach, 30+ minute battery life, dual motors preferably brushless, metal tracks for outdoor traction, and 2-stick controls for precision. The higher the specs, the more versatile and powerful the excavator for bigger jobs.

Which brand of RC excavator is the best quality?

Top RC excavator brands praised for quality and performance include Traxxas, Kyosho, Redcat Racing, and HuiNa. Traxxas offers great ready-to-run models perfect for beginners, while Kyosho and Redcat have higher-end excavators with all metal parts and more power. HuiNa is known for excellent value at lower price points. Compare models within your budget.

What is the difference between ready-to-run and DIY excavators?

Ready-to-run (RTR) excavators come fully assembled with everything you need to start driving out of the box. This convenient option is great for beginners. DIY kits require assembly and allow you to choose custom parts, but take more work to put together. RTR costs less upfront.

Should I get a gas powered or electric RC excavator?

Unless you’re a hobbyist who enjoys maintaining gas engines, go for an electric. Electric offers a safer and easier option, using a rechargeable battery. Maintenance is much lower and you avoid having to deal with exhaust fumes. Just charge up and drive. Gas does provide more power for bigger digs.

What maintenance does an RC excavator require?

Electric excavators just need batteries charged, occasional motor cleaning/oiling, checking for loose screws, monitoring tire tread/tracks, inspecting for damage, and replacing worn parts as needed. Gas powered require fueling, carb adjustment, spark plug changes, engine cleaning, and more intensive upkeep.

What safety precautions should I take with an RC excavator?

  • Use thick gloves to grip sharp edges
  • Wear eye protection
  • Check surroundings for people/pets before operating
  • Ensure transmitter batteries have adequate charge
  • Avoid excessive loads risking damage or tipping
  • Power down when making adjustments
  • Disconnect battery after use for storage

Following basic safety measures will ensure you have fun operating your excavator safely. Check the user manual for model-specific guidance too.

Final Thoughts

Choosing the right RC excavator for your needs doesn’t have to be a daunting task. By first figuring out how you plan to use it and the type of projects you want to take on, you can narrow down the size and features that matter most. Comparing specifications, scales, brands, prices, and reading reviews will help you find the best match. While high-end professional models have amazing power, there are also affordable options perfect for smaller jobs.

The most important thing is selecting an excavator that aligns with your budget and has the right capabilities for what you want to do. Don’t overspend on something too powerful if you just need a machine for minor digging. And ensure the model you choose has the reach, rotation, battery life, and controls that will allow you to complete your projects.

By taking the time to assess your needs and research the top excavators on the market, you’ll be rewarded with a model that provides hours of dirt-moving fun. Just be sure to follow basic safety precautions. With your shiny new RC excavator ready to roll, you’ll be able to sculpture your yard or construction site into just the shape you want. Start your engines and enjoy the dig!

Enjoyed this guide of what is the best RC excavator? Then be sure to check out our other RC Rating guides.