Tri-Pact News Service

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R/C Tank Combat

Low Lands Border Conflict

Press Coverage

Due to some pre-battle messages to get the word out, two news articles were written about the battle, including:
Tankoorlog op de geitenboerderij

Telegeleide tanks lopen vast in hoog gras

For those of you who don't read Dutch, Marc and Joris have translated the articles for your reading pleasure.

Tank war on the goat farm
Sam D'Haese make scale model with paintballs

LICHTAART - In the garden of his father's goat farm Sam D'Haese and some Dutch friends fight Saturday afternoon in an historic tank war. Sam is the first Belgian to build himself a remote controlled scale model of a real tank.

Sam D'Haene (17) is in his last year of technical sciences at the Sancta-Maria-instituut in Kasterlee. He would like to study later as an industrial engineer. With a couple skillful hands and the appreciated practical aid and recommendations of his father, goat farmer Pol, he knocked together a remote controlled scale model of a Russian T-34 tank from the second world war.

Where did he get the idea? "I am quite a fan of Iron Maiden", it sounds initially rather dark. "When I saw frontman Bruce Dickinson driving around in a real tank, I started Googling for more information on tanks. Through the mail from the site at I came into contact with fans of scale paintballtanks, from the US to Greece. I am so far the only Belgian in the TNT, The Netherlands Tankers. Other Belgians are always welcome!

How did he build its own tank? "With the help of my father I knocked together a tank in a plywood framework of approximately a meter long and half meter wide. Two wheel chair motors drive the track. Those I made with a treadmill belt and wooden tracks. For the powering the control system I used two batterys. In the cupola made from fibreglass and polyester resin I installed a second-hand paintball gun with pvc-barrel, a rotate system using a wiper motor, and magazine with paintballs."

RC contol with eight channels operates the tank with a speed of 5 to 6 kilometer per hour. Sam already has another new tank in the pipeline, a Russian T-72. But the first must undoubtedly survive the clash of this afternoon. The ammunition consists of paintballs, but the 'war' ends with barbecue and beer.

Radio controlled tanks stuck in tall grass

The first clash between Belgian and Dutch paintballtanks took place saturday on Belgian ground. The tall grass in Lichtaart proved to be an unexpected difficulty.

Student Sam from Lichtaart met some Dutch tankbuilders at Sam's Russian tank and the german tank of the Dutch ex-soldier and Leopard tank mechanic fought the first Belgium-Holland battle.

The rules: both vehicles are equipped with environmentally friendly paintballs and they need to hit each other 4 times whithin the hour.

Some more Dutch and British tanks were expected saturday, but they had to cancel the very last moment. The trend was set in the United States.

Sam and Marc used the first battle to take care of teething problems of their tanks.

The tracks did not always stay in place and also the paintball feed to the marker sometimes failed. Also the grass was a bit too tall on several places to allow good manouvring of the tanks.

But in spite of all trouble both tank admirers had a good time. Marc was happy to battle with Sam on Belgian ground, because it is illegal to fight paintball battles on private property in The Netherlands.

The big clash will take place on May 17 and 18. Three Brits, A Greek, A Belgian, two Dutchmen and a few fans will gather behind the goat farm in Lichtaart for the first continental paintball clash. Perhaps the battlefield will be extended then. And the grass mown a bit more.