Dissecting a RC tank

After dissecting a RC car, this is time for dissecting a RC tank… It’s been a while since I wanted to build a robot, a mobile robot, with tracks. Because tracks are cool, give nice mobility. But tracks are expensive. Very expensive. Tracks from lynxmotion cost about 220$, this price seems to be an average… So, using a rc tank could give a nice frame with tracks, ready to be used. Of course, quality cannot be the same (at least for the tank I have), but that could be an interesting proof of concept.RC tanks can be found easily on eBay. Prices vary a lot, but if you wait enough, you can get a nice one for very few. I got mine for 30€, shipping included (my first purchase on eBay). This a Leopard II A5 (but whatever…).

So what can be found ? Can this toy make a viable/usable frame ? Let’s have a look…

First of all, let’s have a look at those tracks. As in many tracked-vehicule, tracks are shorter on the bottom than on the top. This ensure minimal frictions while rotating (but less stability). Every wheels over the tracks have suspensions. While this seems cool, the poor quality may add a lots of “noise” while controlling the future rc tank based robot… Only the very last rear wheels drive the tracks. This is where motor are connected. All other wheels are just guide.
Batteries can be found on the reverse side. These are NiCd 1000mA / 9.6V. On the same side, five screws protect the tank from seeing its guts… Only one connector, which can be plugged/unplugged as needed, separate the base with tracks from the turret. Thats really good news, as hacking this tank won’t be too invasive.
Rear wheels connected to motors. With holes to drive the tracks. Tracks look very cheap… There’s no joint, it just looks like plastic ribbons (but seem adhesive). Tracks’ quality varies a lof according the tank (and its price…)…
Here’s the motors’ block… Opening the block shows two DC motors… As expected, both can be controlled separately.
The bottom frame is nice: lots of space, quite flat. The remaining board is for RC control. Probably to be removed. I’ve put my last mainboard on it, just to have an idea… I think this will be great :)

C

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