R/C Tank Combat

Tank #T081

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Upper and lower hull mated for the first time. The wood angles in the back of the upper hull were a pain to make. There is some scale deviance in the back corners. Honestly though, only scale purists will notice.

The TTS wooden sprockets used on SV015 were a royal pain in the butt to make. The wooden teeth took a lot of work to design and try to cut out with nothing but a scroll saw. After seeing the nifty paddle sprockets on T076, I knew that was the way to go with this tank.

The base wooden part is 2 5/8" diameter circles sanded into an even hexagon on a belt sander machine. Each of the eight paddles is 3 1/2" lengths of 1/2" x 1/8" aluminum bar purchased from Lowes Home Improvement store.

This was far easier and faster for me to make than the wooden toothed sprockets. Total time to make these was 2 hours.


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Drawing more upon experience gained with SV015, the TTS tracks went together faster and smoother than before.

SV015 tracks were originally made with wooden guide teeth. Unfortunately, I didn't do a good job making them and eventually had to come up with a way to replace them easily. That led to the method used on the Strv. Metal U channel was cut into toothlike shapes, bolted into place on the track using self tapping screws, and crimped together at the top to form a nicely shaped and strong tooth.

The wooden guide in the picture helped ensure all the teeth lined up perfectly.

Shot of the tracks with upper and lower hull. In between the big jobs like making tracks and such, the upper hull got some details added in to help make me feel like something was getting accomplished. Building tracks was rather time consuming.

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Lower hull with tracks on, electronics in, and wired up. The 20ah battery cells are temporary to get an idea of where the 40ah cells will be placed.

Note the large MC7 motor controllers in the right front of the hull. These are left over from the aborted Merkava build. They were purchased mid 2009 as a low cost, 36 volt solution for the Merkava IV. At the time, they seemed perfect. Very few motor controllers on the market at that time could handle 36 volts.
Why 36 volts? Because to reduce amp draw in the Merkava, I went with high torque/low rpm motors that draw less amps than most 24 and 12 volt motors.

The internal arrangement is close to being set. The open space on the right side of the picture is just enough to shoehorn a 20oz CO2 bottle with a short regulator attached. My 68ci hp tank was JUST too wide to fit. I may go with a little smaller hp tank in the future.

There is those MC7s again. They are huge and take up a large amount of space. I don't like them for this tank. The Strv relies upon precise turning to aim the solidly mounted gun. The MC7 controllers simply do not have the required fine motor power control. I'm looking at replacement options as this is being typed ...


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Looking a lot like a tank now! As mentioned earlier, the marker is solidly mounted in the upper hull. Aiming is accomplished by rocking the tank up or down and by precise steering.

The head on shot shows how sleek and low profile the S-tank is. At this point, the tank is 10 1/4" high. It will get a few more details on top that will add around a 1/2", giving this vehicle a minute 10 3/4" high profile.

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Here it is right after it's second test run and first run with the upper hull attached. There is still a lot of work to be done to have it battle ready by the end of October 2011. yet considering it only took 3 weeks to go from plans to a rolling chassis, the remaining two weeks should be plenty to finish it off in time for battle.

Stay tuned ... more to come ...

After fiberglass and painting, the lower hull is looking rather clean and neat.

Yes, those are rubber track pads. It is probably a mistake to put them on if it will prevent the tank from doing pivot turns. We'll find out.


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