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R/C Tank Combat

Battle In The Badlands

Battle #1

The first battle would pit Tri-Pact against the Tyng Regime once again in their never ending struggle between good and evil (although it's getting difficult to determine which is which these days). Due to a scheduling snafu, Tri-Pact would go onto the battlefield without their founder, Frank Pittelli, but would still be under the expert leadership of Will Montgomery, a veteran battler.

The Teams

Tri-Pact fielded three tanks, including Will's Panther (T017), John's Panzer IV (T012) and Paul's recently almost completed KV-1 (T018). (Paul wasn't able to install his rotate or elevate mechanism, but everything else was working.) John's Panzer had a complete drive system overhaul since the last battle, while Will's Panther had only minor maintenance work performed since then.

The Tyng Regime fielded two tanks, including Steve's T-34 (T005) and Joe's Hetzer (T010). Both vehicles had relatively minor changes since the previous battle, except for some new electronic control systems and video cameras mounted in both vehicles. The Tyng Regime was looking to get some monster footage of themselves destroying the Tri-Pact forces.

Battle Summary

The first battle can be summarized with just two words ... Massive Carnage. A total of 18 vehicles were destroyed during the battle, with each vehicle being destroyed at least twice. In other words, both teams had their ears pinned back and were charging into battle without fear. All battlers agreed that the paint was flying fast and furiously, and that the action never stopped for the entire hour.

The official score (or as best everyone could remember) was as follows:

Offical Scores for Battle In The Badlands Battle #1
Team Asset Operator Hits
Tri-Pact T012 John Pittelli 16 17 0 0 0 0 4,000 4,250 0.515
  T017 Will Montgomery 8 16 0 0 0 0 2,000 4,000 0.667
  T018 Paul Pittelli 4 8 0 0 0 0 1,000 2,000 0.667
TOTAL 28 41 0 0 0 0 7,000 10,250 0.594
Tyng Regime T005 Steve Tyng 20 22 0 0 0 0 5,000 5,500 0.524
  T010 Joe Sommer 13 2 0 0 0 0 3,250 500 0.133
  T018 Paul Pittelli 8 4 0 0 0 0 2,000 1,000 0.333
TOTAL 41 28 0 0 0 0 10,250 7,000 0.406

Asset Type Net Points
T017 PzKpfw V Panther 2,000
T005 T-34-85 500
T012 SdKfz 166 Brummbar 250
T018 KV-1 0
T010 JgPz 38(t) Hetzer -2,750
Operator Net Points
Will Montgomery 2,000
Steve Tyng 500
John Pittelli 250
Paul Pittelli 0
Joe Sommer -2,750

The Hetzer's low number of kills resulted from the fact that it was in home base for about half of the battle as the result of a drive system failure. Apparently, the Tyng Regime mechanics need to go back for some remedial training, since the problem was solved by a simple set screw working loose.

During Joe's absence, Paul apparently took pity on the Tyng Regime and he voluntarily switched sides half-way through the battle. (Clearly, the Tri-Pact indoctrination program has not been completed for this rookie and more brain-washing will be needed before the next battle.) With the KV-1 joining forces with the T-34, Tyng's dream of an all-Soviet force was starting to materialize, even if only temporarily. Interestingly, Paul's performance was better when battling with Tri-Pact, scoring more points for Tri-Pact than he did for the Tyng Regime. (Perhaps Paul wasn't a traitor after all ...) Despite the defection and heavy losses on their own side, Tri-Pact recorded another victory, scoring a total of 10,000 points while the Tyng Regime scored 7,000.

At one point during the battle, Joe's Hetzer got stuck in some loose dirt and he was unable to extracate himself. So, in what is now becoming a familiar story, Steve's T-34 "approached the Hetzer from the rear and rammed it hard", according to Joe. While the somewhat strange mating ritual was taking place, John, Paul and Will started closing in on the lovebirds, firing at every opportunity. Steve later recalled that "I was risking life and limb to help my comrade".

Tri-Pact forces were proud to announce that they successfully laid seige to the Tyng Regime home base, a feat that was not possible in the last battle because of ineffective drive systems that prevented Tri-Pact from venturing very far from their own home base. With their new drive systems, Tri-Pact forces could roam anywhere on the battlefield without concern. In fact, Joe was heard to say that "Darn, I'm not faster than you guys anymore".


As compared to the previous battle event, in which a number of major mechanical breakdowns occurred, only relatively minor problems were seen in this battle. This is almost certainly the result of the maintenance work performed by all battlers since the last battle, fixing a lot of things that proved to be unreliable in the last battle.

Will's Panther was forced to battle without a rotate for a portion of the battle because of a broken wire. Although he fixed that over lunch, it would later cause him problems again when the speed control for the rotate lost the ability to reverse.

As mentioned above, Joe's Hetzer missed part of the battle because of a loose set screw which required him to dig into the system and trouble-shoot everything to discover the relatively simple problem. Joe will probably be investing in some lock-tite in the future (as will most battlers).

John's Panzer IV was working great with its new motors, allowing him to score the most kills for Tri-Pact with a total of five. He may have been able to score even more, however, if he hadn't lost his fire control mechanism ... consisting of a bent paper-clip. (John apparently felt that using anything stronger to pull the trigger would be over-kill!!) Needless to say, he'll probably consider a different source for wire controls in the future.

Paul's KV-1 was amazingly reliable considering that (a) it was in its first battle and (b) Paul only recently completed the major systems. The KV-1 uses a Montgomery Track System, EV Warriors and a Tri-Pact track controller. The only problem suffered by the KV-1 was a fuse holder that unscrewed itself because of the rough terrain, eventually allowing the fuse to pop out. Once that happened, the KV-1 was dead in its tracks ... literally.

Steve's T-34 almost went the entire battle without a problem, except for a motor wedge that worked itself loose. Unlike Tri-Pact motor wedges, Tyng wedges apparently aren't secured by a screw to prevent such problems.

Finally, two major fatalities of the battle were the on-board video cameras installed by Steve and Joe. Apparently, both cameras didn't like the constant shocks generated by the fast moving vehicles running over rough terrain without suspension. Clearly, some shock-mount technology is required before such devices can be used to record gun camera footage or as video feedback in an actual battle. (Smooth, well-manicured lawns are not a sufficient field test for the types of conditions experienced by vehicles on the battlefield).