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Old 08-29-2021, 06:08 PM
dremu dremu is offline
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Default 1:10ish Alvis Stalwart 6x6 high mobility carrier, wrongest of the wrong

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Bit of background: I've been building things of many sizes for years, ranging from scale models to RC vehicles to a 1.5ton ride-on backhoe with working hydraulics. I hate hydraulic fluid.

I've done a number of 1:10 builds, starting with a Cross RC kit (nice, but kinda dry and boring cuz it's just assembling parts) to a partial scratch build HEMTT/PLS and then to full-on scratch builds. Historically I do a thread here with a picture of Jeremy Clarkson saying "How hard can it be?" In this case, I knew dang well it was going to be insanely hard.

For those who don't know it -- which is likely most of y'all -- the Stalwart aka "Stolly" is, well, a uniquely British piece of machinery. From what I've read they were at once loved and hated, loved for being decidedly British and hated for being maintenance-intensive. Think an MG sports car, but amphibious. This is a vehicle designed by the people who brought us Whitworth fasteners, you know.

You can read a bit more on Wikipedia:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alvis_Stalwart

Or, as a quick teaser, here's the end result of my build:

Fans of Dinky and Matchbox type diecasts may recognize it now.

You can also watch the pilot of Firefly for this modified one appearing in the Unification War scenes (an obscure vehicle in an obscure TV show, seems apropos!)

The drivetrain is an absolute Goldbergian nightmare. I imagine some of that was by necessity, to fit the amphibious drive stuff in and around the wheel drive. For my model, I intentionally chose to avoid the amphib part and stay with just the wheels, but nonetheless, it's fiendishly complex mechanically.

Things just doesn't work the way you think they would. For instance, you have six wheels, so you'd assume that, like in any other vehicle in the known universe, the left front wheel would connect to the right front, the left center to the right center, the left rear to the right rear.

You would be wrong. All the left wheels are driven together as one, and all the right as another set.

You would also assume that, like any other vehicle in the known universe, there would be a differential between any given set of wheels.

You would again be wrong. Each set of wheels, left and right, are on a common longitudinal driveshaft with no differential. Any turning then binds up the front wheels vs the rear. Apparently when driving on the highway, SOP was to pull over periodically and run over railroad ties to allow the drivetrain to unbind. (Alternately, the crews would drive over bollards in "car parks", as they call them.) You'll see Stollies with stripes painted across the hubs so that the crew could quickly determine when the hubs were out of sync and bound up.

At least there's a center differential at the transmission, though as we'll see later there's it's a tight fit.

Finally, the thing has independent suspension, which is essentially required because there's no frame. Each wheel/tire is hung from the hull, which was welded like a boat. This as actually much like today's mine-resistant vehicles, which are made with V-hulls to direct the blast from mines and IED's away from the vehicle's occupants.

Here's a cut-away of the thing where you can see all the bazillion parts:

I mean, how hard can it be?

Last edited by dremu; 08-30-2021 at 12:48 PM.
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