NOS Italeri 1/35 Crusader III with MTM gearbox video+2

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Postby modler » Sat Jun 11, 2022 7:16 pm

Make them move (MTM) has a unique gearbox setup in their RRC kit. I have found a good model for this gearbox. The Italeri 1/35 Crusader III 8)

here is a video of the right side track being run in on a stand.
https://youtu.be/s5IBp2N24AY

Here is a video of the Crusader running on the new ITL track.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ejUtRRqQB68


44 years ago I built my first radio control tank, a Crusader MK III. It had a working incandescent 3v headlamp, (No LED's at that time) that indicated battery was hooked up (3v AAA), a single motor hand made gearbox with 1 channel 27 mhz on\off remote control from a toy car. It was a big achievement for me to get this Tank converted to radio remote control and I marveled at this wonderful little Tank. I had built Static and wired remote control Tanks since I was about 10 years old and wished they could move under their own power. Well, this Mk III was my first and though it only had two functions, Stop, Go. that was more than anything else before and was a started point.
I still have that Crusader model although over the years all of it electronics and drive gear have been salvaged for other models, although I think I still have that simple on\off radio receiver some where in my collection of legacy radio gear. as soon as I locate it, I will post it here. I am sure it will still work :D

Back in 1979, some Tank buddies and me had a Fire cracker war and the Crusader was blow to bits but I still have the remains of that Tank and have kept it all these years. I thought about restoring it to working order and I may still but in the meantime I found a new one on ebay, still in the shrink wrap. and have decided to do a new build of the Crusader Mk III 8)
Attachments
IMG_8181.JPG
$20 ebay still in the shrink wrap!
IMG_8312.JPG
Made in Italy distributed by Testor corp
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IMG_8311.JPG
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IMG_8176.JPG
Here is whats left of my 1978 Crusader build
IMG_8176.JPG (90.14 KiB) Viewed 267 times
IMG_8322.JPG
This is the left side gearbox. These are a bit tricky to assemble as the instructions really don't show much.
IMG_8321.jpg
Axles are ready for trimming and fitment into the chassis
IMG_8324.JPG
After evaluating these gearboxes decided that the MTM is the way to go on this Crusader III
IMG_8319.jpg
Last edited by modler on Fri Jun 17, 2022 5:36 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Postby modler » Sun Jun 12, 2022 1:27 pm

This is a far as I got today. This is not an easy model to assemble I mean if you want the road wheels to roll lol. Had a few issues but got it sorted out the the chassis\tracks are assembled and look good.
Attachments
IMG_8316 (1).jpg
This is a very interesting model, very nice tracks
IMG_8316 (1).jpg (73.26 KiB) Viewed 240 times
IMG_8317.JPG
Certainly different than any Tamiya model. Road wheels and
sprockets\idlers all very different the way the are attached on the hull. Works good just have to pay attention to the instructions
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Postby Herr Dr. Professor » Sun Jun 12, 2022 5:31 pm

You get so much more variety of AFVs in 1/35. Then, too, you find replacements after 40 years. Many of Mr. Putin's twenty-first century AFVs look like your Italeri Crusader. Has he contacted you yet about replacing his tanks? :D
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Postby modler » Mon Jun 13, 2022 1:38 pm

Herr Dr. Professor wrote:You get so much more variety of AFVs in 1/35. Then, too, you find replacements after 40 years. Many of Mr. Putin's twenty-first century AFVs look like your Italeri Crusader. Has he contacted you yet about replacing his tanks? :D


Well, I would like to have several 1/16 Tanks but I would soon be living as a Bachelor I fear. I live in a apartment with no basement to hide I mean store Tanks out of the wife's view.

Converting the Crusader is proving to be a challenge using the MTM gearbox. I must be doing something wrong with the assembly of the gearbox and now I need more parts to continue with those. The Crusader tracks were a bit tight as there is no way to adjust the track tension without modifying the chassis of the Crusader and I snapped both drive axles trying to get a video. I will try to get more gearbox axle parts from Cush and then I will continue with the MTM gearbox construction.
Attachments
IMG_8326.JPG
These things are sweet and even though I did not get them to work in this model, I will try with something else after getting some replacement parts for the gearbox's
IMG_8325.JPG
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IMG_8331.jpg
IMG_8332.jpg
Tracks are a little tight and put a big load on the axles
IMG_8334.jpg
very nice model of the Crusader
IMG_8334.jpg (83.18 KiB) Viewed 212 times
IMG_8335.jpg
IMG_8336.jpg
MTM gearbox fits very good in here.
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Postby Herr Dr. Professor » Tue Jun 14, 2022 4:04 pm

The gearboxes sure seem to fit well and neatly. Although it could be an effect from the camera lens, in the second-last photo, it seems as if the tracks are pulling the idlers outward. Is that so? Are those polyvinyl tracks?

Edit: I now see the answer to my question at https://www.rctankwarfare.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?f=33&t=33348&p=329783#p329783.
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Postby modler » Wed Jun 15, 2022 1:22 pm

Herr Dr. Professor wrote:The gearboxes sure seem to fit well and neatly. Although it could be an effect from the camera lens, in the second-last photo, it seems as if the tracks are pulling the idlers outward. Is that so? Are those polyvinyl tracks?

Edit: I now see the answer to my question at https://www.rctankwarfare.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?f=33&t=33348&p=329783#p329783.


Yes they are polyvinyl tracks. I think the camera angle made it look like the Tracks were "pulling the idlers outward" The Track tension was a bit tighter that I would like and there was no way to adjust them without modifying the chassis sprocket openings, and they worked great as first but failed after a short while. Cush from MTM messaged me and said the poly Tracks get too much traction and I would need to switch to individual Tracks link type Track. I have some experience with those that are made of plastic links and and will spin easily under torque therefore reducing the load on the gearboxes. I was doing a pivot turn when the gearboxes failed. That puts a huge load on everything when using poly tracks. Even worse are "rubber Tracks" like on my Panzer III :O

The Crusader III has very narrow tracks and I thought maybe I could get by and if I had adjustable Tracks tensioners, it may have worked. So I will be looking into better tracks although those things take a lot of time to assemble. I will look for ones already assembled as the last ones I tried to build took too long and I gave up :/

All of my 1/35 Tanks use poly Tracks at this point. That is not a problem for the powerful Tamiya gearboxes. However, after a few hours of operation the Tamiya gearboxes get pretty loose around the output shafts. When that happens, you can see the sprockets moving around in a unnatural way. Never had one fail but to an enthusiast Tanker, one can see the gearbox has experienced some
wear and tare :'( However being metal, that can easily be repaired with some Solder and a good Soldering gun. After repair, the Tamiya gearboxes seem to last forever. I will do a separate thread on this topic showing how this repair or "beefing up" of the Tamiya gearbox is done.

Anyway, when I get new axle parts for the MTM gearbox, I will look into them to see if there is a way to "beef them up" a bit just because I would like to use them in more of my models. How many models you say? (75+MOTORIZED remote control Tank models) :O
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Postby modler » Thu Jun 16, 2022 4:48 pm

I looked in my inventory of parts and found a set of tracks that work on the Crusader so I am building them up now. After these tracks are built and working I will switch over to the MTM gearboxes.
Attachments
IMG_8352.jpg
These tracks take a while to build.
IMG_8352.jpg (77.03 KiB) Viewed 161 times
IMG_8353.jpg
slow but sure work in progress.
IMG_8353.jpg (94.74 KiB) Viewed 161 times
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Postby modler » Fri Jun 17, 2022 2:05 pm

here is a video of the right side track being run in on a stand.
https://youtu.be/s5IBp2N24AY

Here is a video of the Crusader running on the new ITL track.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ejUtRRqQB68

Looked around in my old inventory of Tanks parts and found a individual link plastic track kit for early Panzer III, IV Tanks. They did not work on any PIII or IV that I have so they were never used.

I was driving the Crusader III chassis around when the right track broke. So I repaired it then drove some more and it broke in another spot so I realized the tracks in this kit are really fragile and are not suitable for R\C use and are good for display mostly. So I got to thinking about the above track kit which had 1 track 3/4 built and thought I will try this track and see if it works on the Crusader and much to my surprise they do :D They are a bit wider than the Crusader tracks but seem to work good. So I am running a PZ III ITL on the right side and the stock poly track on the left until I get another track built which takes some time to assemble.

here is a video of the right side track being run in on a stand.
https://youtu.be/s5IBp2N24AY

Here is a video of the Crusader running on the new ITL track.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ejUtRRqQB68

Cush from MTM says I need ITL (plastic) to use with the MTM gearbox so I will use these as test tracks until I can find a Crusader ITL track.
Attachments
IMG_8354.jpg
I started the assembly of this track 6 months ago for a Panzer III but it did not fit the sprocket properly and had given up on using it until now on this Crusader
IMG_8356.JPG
wow I like this. This track is designed as a "posable tracks" but I have plans to run them as active track on a R\C model.
IMG_8356.JPG (94.79 KiB) Viewed 142 times
IMG_8359.JPG
Got lucky that they fit this Crusader. They are a bit wider but that does not bother me.
IMG_8359.JPG (93.95 KiB) Viewed 142 times
IMG_8360.JPG
the ITL look distorted in this picture for some reason
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Postby modler » Sat Jun 18, 2022 5:17 pm

I will be switching the gearbox in this Crusader back to MTM after I get both poly tracks replaced with the plastic ITL.

I have an idea to make the MTM gearbox's adjustable as far as track tension is concerned using the same adjuster hole and screw present in the chassis now and beef them up as well 8)
This mod will make the MTM gearboxes removable and have a mounting plate that is compatible with the Tamiya gearbox so that they are interchangeable.

More on this as I get time.
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Postby modler » Mon Jun 20, 2022 5:34 pm

I had some time to look at MTM gearbox again and redid the axle with the last of the parts I had on hand on got one side working again and this time I altered the assembly of the axle and it seems more robust. I am getting ready to test it in a half track chassis to drive 1 track and see what happens.

reworked gearbox video
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kBy7XCbifjY&t=4s
Attachments
IMG_8381.JPG
using this M4 Halftrack chassis to test the MTM gearbox rebuild.
IMG_8383.JPG
fits in this chassis which is pretty small.
IMG_8382.JPG
ready for testing after the glue dries
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Postby Herr Dr. Professor » Mon Jun 20, 2022 9:03 pm

Oooh! I tawt I taw a haftrack! I DID! I DID see a haftrack!

index.jpg
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Postby modler » Tue Jun 21, 2022 3:02 pm

Herr Dr. Professor wrote:Oooh! I tawt I taw a haftrack! I DID! I DID see a haftrack!

index.jpg


Yes Herr Dr, you did 8) That M4 Half track chassis is from a model I built in 1983. I still have it of course :/ and actually the chassis was removed in 1983 and has been sitting around since then, I have always wanted to build the chassis into a working model but have never found the appropriate gearbox until now. The MTM fits right in there.

here is a short video of the rebuilt gearbox with a Halftrack sprocket installed. https://youtu.be/kBy7XCbifjY

So now looks like we are doing a half track 8)

Here is a video of 1 track running. https://youtu.be/ufJjediYq38
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Postby Herr Dr. Professor » Tue Jun 21, 2022 4:08 pm

I have a 1/16 Famo to tackle next, and I am puzzled about how to coordinate steering front wheels with tracks. I will be interested to see how you do it, even if with completely different electronics.
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Postby modler » Tue Jun 21, 2022 7:07 pm

Herr Dr. Professor wrote:I have a 1/16 Famo to tackle next, and I am puzzled about how to coordinate steering front wheels with tracks. I will be interested to see how you do it, even if with completely different electronics.


Ideally, you would have 2 motors\gearboxes for the tracks just like a tank and with steering wheels in the front. Then you program a mix in the TX to slow the track on the same side as the direction of the turn for tightest turn. I have a 1/18 Hanomag half track that has the right track motor configuration to allow this mix and it needs a radio upgrade so I will do a thread on that soon.

meanwhile, I have decided to make both tracks work on this HT frame using the MTM gearbox. This little venture has given me some experience with the MTM gearbox and I am starting to like it and have some plans for future models.

Here is a video of the finished MTM installation on the 1/35 scale half track frame. https://www.youtube.com/shorts/1d_Wy4AniIY
Attachments
IMG_8389.JPG
the right side is missing some parts and is tore up but I am going to patch it up and get it going so I can have a test bed for this single MTM gearbox configuration.
IMG_8386.JPG
finally got the axles the way I want them
IMG_8385.JPG
Both sprockets installed and they are press fit push on\off and are removable. That took a lot of extra time to make them removable.
IMG_8391.jpg
I have a lot of time in this MTM gearbox testing but now see the potential in using them in these small models.
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Postby modler » Wed Jun 22, 2022 3:34 pm

The MTM gearbox works so well in this model that I have decided to "MAKE IT MOVE" under its own power with radio remote control.

The steering box is not scale but good enough for this old beat-up chassis. I want to drive it around to test the durability of the gearbox with these tracks. It is recommended that I-L tracks be used and should be "loose" but I have jacked this box up to be able to handle a bigger load.
Attachments
IMG_8392.jpg
Halftrack city
IMG_8393.JPG
added a steering box so this will be drivable soon Not scale steering but good enough for testing purposes.
IMG_8395.jpg
IMG_8396.jpg
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