R/C Tank Combat

Tank #T046


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Type: Centaur CS Mk IV Armament: 95mm
Built: September 2006 Armor: 76mm
Builder: John Carioti Rating: 40/4
Status: Operational Battles: 2
Owner: John Carioti Points Earned: 950
Call Sign: unknown Points Given: 5,000
  • Cog-drive TTS
  • Wooden wheels
  • Spring arm suspension

  • Click Photo For Enlargement (130 Kb)
    Here is some detail of the TTS. The guide wheels are 6" diameter, and they were made using a 6" hole saw. I used 3/4" plywood, and glued 2 pieces together for each wheel. There are 10 wheels per side (plus the tensioner wheel in the front). The axle for each guide wheel is a 3/8" grade 8 bolt, which goes through oilite bushings in the wheel and is then screwed into the suspension arm mechanism. The arm is made from 3/8" thick 7075 aluminum. A large spring is attached to the arm which provides the proper tension and suspension.

    The drive sprockets are 4.5" in diameter and made from 1/2" steel. The sprockets were waterjet cut at Aquacut in Syracuse.

    This picture shows the suspension spring attached to the arm. This assembly is sandwiched between the hull and the outer skirt of the tank. The hull and skirt are 1/2" thick plywood.

    Click Photo For Enlargement (99 Kb)

    Click Photo For Enlargement (109 Kb)
    Here you can see the inside of the hull. The drive system consists of two NPC T64038 motors. These are rated at 2 hp and weigh about 13 lbs each. They have built in gearboxes and the output RPM at 24 volts is about 400 RPM. I have geared the drive system up a little, so that the RPM of the tread drive shaft is about 500 RPM.

    You can also see the batteries, which are Panasonic 12 volt 12 AH. There are 4 of these which provide 24 volts at 24 AH.

    A close up view of the drive system. The chain is #40, and the drive axle is 1" diameter steel. I had to use a tensioner on this side because I couldn't get the proper tension by adding/removing chain links (a real pain in the butt). The tensioner is a piece of thick-walled UHMW tubing, mounted on a 1/2" bolt. It works quite well and is pretty rugged.

    The axle is mounted to a 1" flange bearing, and then extends through the hull via a 1" bushing to the drive sprocket.


    Click Photo For Enlargement (105 Kb)

    Click Photo For Enlargement (113 Kb)
    A little more detailed view of the drive system and batteries. At the bottom you can see the Hella switch which is used for the battery disconnect. I modified the red switch key by cutting the flat part off and screwing a hex socket button head screw into the shaft. With this set up I can insert a tee handle hex tool through a small hole in the hull and turn the tank on and off without having to open anything up. Since the switch is totally enclosed within the hull, there is no danger of anything bumping into it and turning the tank off during battle.

    On the other side you can see the orange RC Receiver. This is mounted on a bracket to the side of the hull. This receiver uses 3 channels- 2 for the drive system and one for the turret control. A 24 volt to 5 volt DC-DC converter provides the rcvr voltage.

    The speed controls in this picture are Victor 883's. But I will swap these for my Vantec RDFR33 once it comes back from repair.

    The battery wiring uses 45 amp Anderson powerpole connectors. These allow for easy hook up with the SLA charger. The wiring is 10 GA stranded wire.

    This is the turret control system. I am using a Barello ESC for full proportional speed control. The motor is a surplus 12 volt 5 RPM unit purchased from All Electronics. It seems to have plenty of torque. The 12 volt battery pack is located at the top (under the wood). I made the pack using 3000 maH NiMH batteries.

    Click Photo For Enlargement (97 Kb)

    Click Photo For Enlargement (105 Kb)
    A view of the turret. Actually a little messy!

    The marker is a Sheridan XTS I found on Ebay. I followed the advice of Steve Tyng on this one, because I knew nothing about paintball markers when I started out. The marker is heavily modified to fit inside the turret. The trigger is actuated by a solenoid that I bought from McMaster Carr.

    The marker is mounted on an 1/8" thick piece of carbon fiber. This assembly is mounted (near the front) to a pivot point which allows for the gun to move up and down. At the back of the assembly, a jumbo servo (with a modified arm) simply lifts the back of the gun up or down for elevation control. I'm not sure this is going to be reliable, but it seems to work OK. We shall see!

    The paintball feed system consists of a piece of 3/4" ID flexible conduit attached to the marker via the standard "coiled wire" system. This allows for the gun to move up and down without any restrictions. At the other end of the tube, I put a high capacity 12 volt blower. The idea is to help move the balls through the tube. The idea was good, but the results are a bit shaky. The system seems to work OK for up to about 30 balls. Beyond that, the fan doesn't really have enough force to keep things moving. I've found that just jiggling the tank back and forth a little keeps things moving along. Again- I'm not sure how well this will work in a real battle!

    Not shown in this picture is the 3.5 oz CO2 cylinder. It has a 1/4 turn shut off valve and an anti siphon tube installed.

    The wire running along the top of the paintball feed tube is the RC rcvr antenna. The rcvr is mounted to the wall of the turret. Channel 5 is used for the firing, and channel 6 (a knob) is used for elevation control.

    I used two sets of batteries in the turret: one pack is 6 volts at 1.3 Ah for the Servo and the RC rcvr, and a 12 volt 1.3 Ah pack for the firing solenoid and the fan.

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