Motorized Tank Infrared Remote Control
Looking for an RC tank base to hack for your next robot? Look no further! We've never encountered a motorized RC tank that was so easy to modify. Read more about the basic tank in the Radio Control category.
The tank is disassembled by removed eight screws on the bottom shell. The top and bottom shells separate, and the wiring attaching the tank electronics with the motorized turret is unplugged simply by removing two connectors! This is unheard of in the manufacture of remote control toys at this pricepoint, but it certainly makes modifying this tank blissfully easy. What's more, you can readily plug the connectors back in, and return the tank to its original condition. Try that with the other RC tanks!
Once the top shell is removed you have an expandable tank base you can practically use as-is. The base measures 12" x 3 1/4", and without the turret the tank stands 2" in height. Internally the tank base consists of three separate components, which are all-self-contained: an 8 ohm speaker for sound effects, a 3" x 3 1/4" PCB for control, and a dual motorized gearbox. That's right: the gearbox is modular, and may be removed from the tank base and used in a completely new design! Try that with the other RC tanks!
The treads are rubber but not very elastic. The inside of the tread is cogged to positively engage with the drive sprocket, both in the center of the tread and at the edges. The cog fits inside "keepers" in the eight idler rollers, so that the tread seldom detracks in hard turns. The seam where the ends of the tread meet is cemented and riveted, for a super-strong joint.
Some additional specifications for the tank and tread:
- Distance between treads (centerline): 4.5"
- Ground contact length of tread: 7"
- Tread width: 1"
- Tread circumference: Approximately 23"
- Tank travel speed: approx 12"/sec.
You can hack this tank in any of a number of ways. You can replace the existing electronics with your own microcontroller. Operate the left and right tread motors with a suitable H-bridge. If you need extra room for more electronics, you can add decks, using the existing screw holes for mounting.
Or, if you wish to build your own base from scratch, you can remove the motor gearbox by taking out the four screws that hold it in place. Four wires connect the motors of the gearbox to the board, and these must be unsoldered or clipped off. The sprockets are press-fit onto the drive axles, and there is little reason to remove them. The 16 idlers (8 to each side) are removed by popping off their little plastic hubcaps -- another quality feature you don't often find -- and unscrewing the rollers from their axle posts.
The motor of the tank is a self-contained module,
and can be removed for other projects.
The inside of the tank tread incorporates a cog
that positively engages with the drive sprocket.
May need to ship by UPS!