by: Frederick Boucher [ ]
Originally published on:
Mechanical Turtle, Crawling Type
IntroductionTamiya is known for models of war machines, cars, and motorcycles. They make models of dinosaurs. But robotics? Well domo arigato, Mr. Roboto, introducing Tamiya Robocraft!
Tamiya makes more than a dozen of these models, and the following are advertised on the inner flaps of the box:
• Mechanical Dog (Four-Leg Walking Type)
• Mechanical Kangaroo (Two-Leg Jumping Type)
• Mechanical Beetle (Obstacle Evading Type)
• Mechanical Ostrich (Two-Leg Walking Type)
Mechanical Turtle, Crawling TypeThe last remote control Tamiya model I assembled was over 35 years ago, their 1/35 Jagdtiger. It was controlled by a big styrene battery pack/control box tethered to the tank with a ganglion of wires. It had a pair of motors in a metal casing full of metal gears.
This turtle is a very different model. A simplified design, it is designed to recreate a realistic turtle-walk. A ball joint, crank and linkage plate helps mimic the walk, and a spring simulates the wagging tail! No glue is required, only snap- and screw-together parts. Tamiya states you will need a hobby knife and sprue nippers, and they supply the screwdriver and lubricant. Battery (AAA) not included.
Robo Rocket Science?I helped assembled this kit with a kid who has never touched a model before. It took about an hour even with fun distractions of television and grandparents.
To do so you snap some terminals into a styrene battery case, thread wires into the metal tabs, secure those with rubber tubing, then thread the other ends into the switch you also assemble. The switch assembly also takes the wires to the motor.
The gearbox you assemble with axles and gears, bushings, and washers. These are held inside a clear plastic case secured with a screw. The motor snaps into a holder, which snaps into the gearbox.
These sub-assembles are snapped and screwed onto the turtle "body". Then you perform the tricky task of aligning the "legs" and "feet"--more bushings and washers and screws.
All in all, challenging, not difficult. Be careful and work deliberately.
A gear and some bushings and washers were left over. Oh, and you get to keep the screwdriver!
Kit ContentsThe sprues are sealed in a plastic bag, as are the many, many metal parts. Lots of parts:
• 16 ABS resin and styrene parts on three sprues:
= Sprue B, Translucent chartreuse
= Sprue M, clear
= Sprue Switch Parts, clear
• Rubber tube
• Battery Case
• 21 Step and Tapping Screws In 8 Sizes
• 6 Washers in 2 Sizes
• 4 Hex Nuts, 2 Sizes
• 4 Eyelets
• 1 Steel Ball
• 2 Nylon Bushings
• 4 Foam Boots
• 1 Hex shaft with nut
• 1 Hex shaft
• 1 Spring
• 6 Switch terminals of 3 types
• 3 Battery terminals
• 1 Motor
• 1 Cover parts
• 3 Gears of different ratios
Moving onThis turtle robot is a lot of fun. Challenging assembly, a cute subject. It went together snugly; I really enjoyed assembling it. It is a great way to introduce kids to modeling. Highly recommended!
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