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Tyng/Sommer Breakup?by Vern Dernberger
Annapolis, Maryland - Feburary 8, 2003:
Over the past few months, the R/C tank combat world has watched a roller-coaster courtship between Tyng Laboratories, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tyng Enterprises, LLC and Anvilus Plastic Works, an academic consortia of mechanical engineers. Tyng has repeatedly announced "long-lasting" and "deeply-rooted" partnerships with Anvilus through its marketing representatives, while Anvilus has made numerous statements that indicate that such alleged partnerships are more hype than reality.
Recently, senior representatives from both organizations attended a technology information exchange that was hosted by the world renowned Tri-Pact Institute of Technology at their sprawling technical campus in beautiful Annapolis, MD. This reporter had a first-hand opportunity to watch the representatives as the met each other for the first time and as they interacted throughout the day. Using a number of advanced intelligence gathering and monitoring systems provided by the Tri-Pact Bureau of Investigations, this reporter was able to monitor the entire day's events without being detected, thereby preventing Tyng and Anvilus from spinning a story for the media.
Early Warning Signs
The first signs of the possible breakup came within 5 minutes of the initial meeting of Tyng and Sommer. Feeling at ease in the well-equiped laboratory spaces provided by Tri-Pact, Tyng queried "As a mechanical engineer, Joe, what do you think of my technology?", pointing to the heavily-marketed Tyng Track System (TTS). Sommer's reply was quick and direct, "Needs some work", he said returning to his technical discussions with Tri-Pact engineers.
The silence from Tyng's side of the lab was deafening. How dare Sommer insult the products being offered by Tyng Labs, Tyng thought. More to the point, Could it be that Anvilus is thinking about an alliance with Tri-Pact?, knowing that Tyng Labs could never match Tri-Pact dollar-for-dollar, or pizza-for-pizza in a bidding war for Anvilus patents. Tyng retreated to a defensive position and starting monitoring the interactions between Sommer and the Tri-Pact leadership.
Big Brother Is Watching
Although advertised as a technical information exchange, anyone familiar with Tri-Pact, including this reporter, knows that they are always gathering information about technical systems and, more importantly, possible opponents whenever they can.
Dr. Von Huppel, the world-renowned technical genius behind many of Tri-Pact's strategic initiatives was not present at the meeting, but many experts believe that he was monitoring every aspect of the meeting using a vast array of intelligence gathering equipment hidden throughout the Tri-Pact complex. Video cameras, audio microphones, infra-red detectors, motion sensors and even odor detectors watched every move, sound or smell made by the Tyng and Anvilus representatives. Some experts even believe that Tri-Pact has perfected a micro lie-detector device that looks like a pepperoni and can be used to monitor the truthfullness of any individual who ingests it.
All of the intelligence data gathered by Tri-Pact is relayed to the Tri-Pact Security Agency through the super-secret Tri-Pact Battlestar Management System directly to Dr. Von Huppel's personal laboratory, as well as other high-ranking Tri-Pact officials.
Technical Storms Brewing
In an unprecedented move, Tri-Pact allowed this reporter access to all of the data gathered during the first meeting between Tyng and Anvilus representatives, as well as the preliminary technical analysis (complete analysis will take years because of binding labor agreements between Tri-Pact and their analytic employees). The technical results are shocking. The technical darling of Tyng Laboratories, the Tyng Track System (TTS), is indeed a superior track system that requires little or no additional work. Sommer's quick and brutal statement to the contrary was clearly directed at distancing themselves from such inexpensive technology in hopes of promoting their own more expensive plastic track system. Anvilus' plastic track also has good technical ratings, although Tyng stated that "I think it looks like a bathtub mat" when he thought he was talking in private with a Tri-Pact lab engineer.
Track systems aside, the real story lies with the competing drive systems being promoted by both Tyng and Anvilus. Tyng is pushing hard for a standard drive system based on old printer motors, which Tyng claims is a technically superior solution. Experts believe that Tyng is sitting on a stock-pile of such motors and intends to gain a huge financial windfall by selling such motors to Anvilus as part of their joint agreement. Anvilus, on the other hand, is pushing for the adoption of DeWalt portable drill motors, which he claims is the best all-around solution. Here again, experts believe that Anvilus has a financial stake in DeWalt, possibly through ties with the University, although such allegations are unconfirmed at this time.
As both companies promote competing technologies for purely financial reasons, the initial field trials clearly indicate that both solutions are fatally flawed. Results indicate that neither drive system has sufficient power to operate the vehicles effectively. Both drive systems were incapable of turning the vehicles on anything other than a flat surface. Both representatives had plenty of reasons for the failed tests, ranging from "It's only our first test" to "The Tri-Pact test range must be improperly configured". But, in the final analysis, it's back to the drawing board for both companies.
Not A Beep From The Giant
Remarkably, while Tyng and Anvilus were falling over each other in an attempt to demonstrate their technologies, Tri-Pact technical leaders were remarkably quiet about any current projects in their laboratories.
It is well known that the Panzer IV tank currently being developed by John Pittelli, an heir to the vast Pittelli Workshop Holdings in Essex, MD, has incorporated a large number of advanced capabilities and manufacturing techniques during its construction. Furthermore, the elder Pittelli even stopped by for a meet-and-greet at the end of the forum. Yet, no real information about the vehicle was offered by Tri-Pact, even though it has been tested for at least the last month at the Tri-Pact Proving Grounds.
More importantly, the venerable Tiger-1, which was sitting on display throughout the meeting, is reportedly undergoing a complete overhaul to improve its revolutionary, but aging systems. Other reports indicate that Will Montgomery's battle winning Panther is also being replaced by a completely new vehicle with advanced capabilities never seen before in the hobby. Despite such activities, Tri-Pact representatives provided little or no information about them. In fact, Tri-Pact didn't operate any of their combat vehicles during the public field trials. Rather, they operated a commercially-available, non-combat vehicle to apparently entertain the Tyng and Anvilus representatives: a ploy that worked to perfection.
Follow The Money
This reporter believes that the technical shortcomings of the Tyng and Anvilus drive systems is at the heart of their impending breakup. The first company to solve their problems will quickly become the target of a lucrative Tri-Pact take-over bid, which is the ultimate goal of each company. Tri-Pact's vast financial empire continues to warp the technical developments of the hobby, as small companies like Tyng Labs and Anvilus Plastic Works compete for valuable Tri-Pact defense contracts and mutual marketing agreements.