R/C Tank Combat

Field Artillery #FA003


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Type: 16-inch Shore Battery Armament: 16-inch
Built: January 2005 Armor: None
Builder: Frank Pittelli Rating: 10/1
Status: Operational Battles: 38
Owner: Frank Pittelli Points Earned: 66,419
Call Sign: Navarone One Points Given: 36,500
  • Motor-driven rotate and elevate
  • Door-lock actuator fire control

    When it comes to artillery, there's nothing like a 16-inch naval gun to launch a heavy shell a long way. Guns like the one shown here were used as shore batteries along the east and west coasts of the USA during World War II to defend against potential attacks and invasions. At over 40 feet long, they were quite impressive and had no equal. Taking its name from the classic war movie, The Guns of Navarone, Navarone One is a 1/12 scale model of the 16-inch naval gun to be used as fixed artillery battery.

    Construction begins from the inside out, starting with the paintball marker. An inexpensive Spyder marker (less than $70) will be fit inside of the breach, requiring the removal of the stock magazine feed tube. Since the marker body is plastic, the tube is easily cut away and sanded clean. The trigger guard and handle are also cut away.

    Click Photo For Enlargement (127 Kb)

    Click Photo For Enlargement (128 Kb)
    A magazine adapter is made from Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) and a short aluminum tube. A couple 1/2" thick pieces are cut to fit the radius of the marker and then glued together to form a solid block. A 7/8" hole is bored into the adapter to hold the aluminum tube through which the paintballs will flow. A 1-1/8" diameter hole is cut around the tubing to hold a flexible wire magazine (see next photo). The outside radius of the adapter matches the inside radius of the PVC pipe used as the basis for the gun breach. The adapter will be glued inside of the breach when completed.

    The breach is constructed from a variety of common parts, starting with a section of 3 inch PVC pipe. MDF plugs are created for both ends to hold the marker in place. Half-inch bolts are mounted on both sides to serve as the pivot point for the gun. A coil of insulated 14-gauge solid wire (surplus house wiring) is fitted over the aluminum tube of the internal magazine feed adapter. Finally, a couple pieces of smaller PVC tubing and wooden dowels are used to model the recoil mechanism used by the real gun. Lead weights will be epoxied inside of the tubes as counter-weights when the gun is completed and then the tubes will be sealed.

    Click Photo For Enlargement (113 Kb)

    Click Photo For Enlargement (113 Kb)
    As seen from the bottom of the breach, the marker is installed inside the breach with only the CO2 feed and trigger extending outside. The black box on the left side of the photo is a $3.50 car door lock actuator that essentially converts the manual trigger to an electronic trigger by momentarily applying 12 volts to the wires shown.

    A big gun requires a big carriage, so it was time to practice welding some more. Half-inch square tubing was cut and welded to form two simple free standing frames. The frames are bolted to a 1/2" MDF turntable that is 20 inches in diameter. The gun will be suspended between them using the 1/2 inch bolts built into the breach. (The 1/2 inch threaded rod shown in this photo is there solely for alignment purposes). The linkage and gear system shown on the right side of the photo is used to elevate the gun.

    Click Photo For Enlargement (141 Kb)

    Click Photo For Enlargement (130 Kb)
    The other side of the elevate system shows two limit switches, which are used to control the range of elevation. The metal dial indicator is welded to the axle of the elevate motor and trips a double-throw switch at either extreme. A MAG motor control (not shown) controls forward and reverse by changing the polarity of two wires which are tied to the Normally-Closed (NC) pole of each limit switch. The Common poles of each limit switch are in turn connected to the elevate motor itself. Accordingly, if the switches are not depressed, whatever polarity is set by the MAG motor is sent to the motor, which turns in the given direction. When a limit switch is tripped, the positive side of the circuit is interrupted, thereby stopping the motor. By connecting the Normally-Open pole of each limit switch to Battery-Common, the motor can go in the opposite direction when the MAG motor control is reversed.

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