My Beaut Aussie Cent

Forum for discussion relating to the Centurion
Fabrice Le Roux
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Fabrice Le Roux » Wed Jan 06, 2016 3:00 pm

Stephen,
Lovely job. As others have said, it gets harder and harder to tell which are full scale references and what are your handiwork. Bravo.

One last question, when bending the rod for the lid handles, I noticed you filed(?) small notches. Was this to assist centering or to assist bending? Did you have to fill in the notches afterwards?

Always looking to improve my technique for making these small items!
kind regards
Fabrice

William Gardeniers
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by William Gardeniers » Wed Jan 06, 2016 7:12 pm

Hi Stephen, outstanding work on the bins.

Regards William
With Regards William

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Iacopo Di Giampietro
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Iacopo Di Giampietro » Thu Jan 07, 2016 2:21 pm

Ciao Stephen.
I do not know what else to add to what has been said by other friends of Forum....
a job like no other.
It is difficult to distinguish which model and what the real tank.
Pure spectacle: congratulations!

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Stephen White
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Stephen White » Thu Jan 07, 2016 7:37 pm

Thanks for all the wonderful feedback, it really does make it worthwhile. If the posts add to the collective knowledge base, so much the better.

Fabrice, I see what you mean on the first photo - in fact all you're seeing is some black marker pen. No need to notch the brass rod in any way, once annealed, it bends like a good'un, especially using a former in the vice. It can't do anything but conform.

I've just programmed Adrian Harris' three-way MG flash unit to drive LEDs on the coax and ranging gun. I'm using one channel for the coax and two for the ranging gun, to give both the 3 round burst and continuous fire. Now, if I had a fourth, I could add the commander's MG.... Great bit of kit, Adrian, thanks.

Thanks again for all the positive feedback.

Stephen

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Adrian Harris
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Adrian Harris » Thu Jan 07, 2016 7:41 pm

You could always buy another module, just for the commander :lol: :wink:

Glad you like it - and thanks for being an early adopter.

Hopefully these will be available for general release soon :D

Adrian.
Contact me at sales@armortekaddict.uk for details of my smoker fan control module and other electronic gadgetry

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Stephen White
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Stephen White » Fri Jan 15, 2016 10:07 pm

After the long flog of the bins, it's a real pleasure to make a one-off, the gun crutch:

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I'm not sure if the crutch was changed when the 105mm was adopted but the kit supplied crutch is certainly over-size for the 20 pdr:

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The yoke was just a piece of simple milling and drilling:

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Arrangement for soldering up a pivot on the retaining nut shaft:

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The retaining nut is a complicated bit of kit, it is in fact two pieces, the retaining nut and a lock nut, belt and braces. This required a nifty piece of turning on the lathe and some milling on the rotary table:

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The retaining bar is a welded assembly with a small saddle forming the hinge:

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Soldered up with the hinge pins drilled and split pinned:

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Final assembly:

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With a good headband magnifier, I find this sort of detailed work more rewarding than frustrating and the extra level of detail seems to help with the overall scale effect.

Regards

Stephen

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Iacopo Di Giampietro
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Iacopo Di Giampietro » Sat Jan 16, 2016 6:24 am

Buongiorno Stephen,
Not bad ... but .... :roll: .... write it, what are the actual photos of reference and which are of the model: I can not make out! :mrgreen: :lol:

Congratulations: excellent job, as always.
Ciao,
Iacopo

Frank Breitenbach
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Frank Breitenbach » Sun Jan 17, 2016 8:46 am

Hello Stephen
Einfach gut - really perfect! Your building report is very helpfull for me.
Regards
Frank

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Stephen White
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Stephen White » Fri Jan 22, 2016 9:29 pm

On Adrian's recommendation, here's how I've set up the MG flash. Rather than try to stuff the LED into the MG, I've used a barrel length section of 2mm fibre optic, to which I've joined the LED with heat shrink. I've extended the heat shrink to the muzzle, not strictly necessary but it provides the right diameter to fit the barrels. Note that I dressed the cut end of the fibre optic with some very fine wet and dry and also dressed off the top of the LED to provide a flat interface. The result is stunningly bright. I did experiment with yellow LEDs but the white is much brighter. Thanks Adrian, your MG mixer box is a gem.

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Stephen

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Stephen White
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Stephen White » Fri Jan 22, 2016 10:19 pm

A few bits and pieces remain to do on the hull, including the convoy lights, two on the front bins and two on the hull rear:

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The front ones invariably suffered in the Vietnamese vegetation. 064 had a full complement in June 1969 when it was allocated from B Sqn Holding Troop to 2 Tp, just before the Battle of Binh Ba:

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The rear left was lucky to survive the RPG strike on the resilient rail, one of two which 064 received during the day long battle:

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By 1971, with replacement bins and track guards, both front lights had gone:

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At the time the model is set in, Aug/Sep 69, the front left had gone - making three was OK but a fourth might have been one too many.

Firstly to turn up the lens surrounds:

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The lights themselves were sculpted in aluminium bar:

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Lights installed, with a small brass rod to represent the lens:

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I then made up the cable fittings and conduit for the front lights, the front left looking a bit "distressed":
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Regards

Stephen

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Stephen White
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Stephen White » Sat Jan 23, 2016 10:19 pm

A faithful replica of a specific tank doesn't come without a degree of pain......

It turns out (on authoritative advice from Australia) that the cone shaped lights were very rare on Australian Cents. I suppose I was guilty of wishful thinking in interpreting a photo of 064 when I had good references for the cone shape from Bovington.

This is the type most commonly found on Aussie Cents:

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So off with the cones, turn up some new retaining nuts and get onto the interweb to order some 5mm red and white lenses from AK Interactiv:

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Job done. Thanks Mike.

Stephen

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Adrian Harris
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Adrian Harris » Sun Jan 24, 2016 10:11 am

It must be really annoying having your quality control manager living 12 hours ahead :lol: :lol:
Just when you're sitting back basking in the glow of a job well done...

A lovely piece of detailing, as we've come to expect, even down to the finish on the conduit :D

Adrian.
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davidwilkins
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by davidwilkins » Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:48 am

Stephen,

Brilliant job on the convoy lights, thanks for posting the supplier of the lens that you have used. I have been looking for a long time on the internet for some lens 5mm in size, problem now solved.

Regards

David

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Stephen White
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Stephen White » Tue Jan 26, 2016 5:53 pm

If traverse stabilisation is ever to work, the turret ring needs a low friction bearing. I've been fortunate to have a set of Peter Quambusch's excellent roller bearings ready to install. Unlike the latest batch Tiger, the Cent has very little space in which to install these bearings. After some careful measuring, to get consistent position and depth, I set about the turret ring with slot drills and boring bars on the milling machine:

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This is the final set of eight bearings loctited in:

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The result is a dream. The turret is now free to turn at the push of a finger, the load on the traverse motor is drastically reduced and the traverse is much more responsive. There is still some free play in the gearing to take out but it's a mod well worth doing, although it's now standard for the latest Tiger batch.

Thanks Peter for supplying the bearings.

Stephen

Fabrice Le Roux
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Re: My Beaut Aussie Cent

Post by Fabrice Le Roux » Tue Jan 26, 2016 11:53 pm

Stephen,
Great work! Your photos belie the effort required to setup and clamp such a large and flexible part on a modest mill bed with consistent results. 8)

Looking ahead, gear backlash is one problem, so perhaps laser-cutting a finer toothed ring gear and matching a finer drive gear might address this.

Momentum is another factor once a heavy object is set in motion with little resistance. With gears , chatter can develop, :idea: so I can't help wondering if a stepper motor with a toothed belt driving a central pivot shaft might provide your stab system with better feedback, better control, and minimal backlash. This is how many precision electro-mechanical systems are now designed, and the components are hence inexpensive and readily available from a host of hobby-robotics suppliers.

However I can see a central pivot solution has its own baggage as the connections to the turret systems would need a slip ring solution (for the brave!) or maybe just make the pivot a tube and run an umbilical with some free play up the centre. Why make life hard?

The ultimate test for the bearings is to neutral-turn the tank under the turret and see how long the turret takes to overcome the inertia and match the rotation. Do post a vid if you try this.

Lovely job as always,
cheers,
Fabrice

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