Picture Post > Armour

Old Wombat's Crab - FINISHED - Pic's pg.7

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Go for it - I am curious how this turned out!  :thumbsup:

Old Wombat:
Slowly! Slowly! But, finally, almost there!

OK, it'll be at the "done for now" stage (I still have some tools to fit & a base to make) but, for all practical purposes, she'll be finished tonight.

Photo's soon! :thumbsup:

Old Wombat:
You know the saying about "The best laid plans of mice & men"? Yeah, well, it bit me! :banghead:

Not big time, so I have FINISHED! ;D

I have also taken photo's but I can't download, edit or post them until I get access to the study computer, which SWMBO is using for work. So, I'm looking around the modelling room being overwhelmed by the tidying & cleaning task ahead. :-\

Pic's tonight! :mellow:


Old Wombat:
With serious Bush Fires becoming more & more common the South Australian government, in a rare moment of cooperation with the Victorian & New South Wales governments, looked at acquiring a specialist vehicle for managing containment lines. Not wanting to deal with China, which was becoming even more belligerent towards Australia, they approached Hitachi Heavy Industries in Japan to design & build the vehicle.

Hitachi began with the cabin & arm set-up of their pre-existing Double Arm Astaco* Neo but needed to find a lightly armoured (&, therefore, fireproof) hull to fit it to. Specifications from Australia included a low ground pressure, road transportability, metal tracks (as rubber would melt/burn in the expected environments) & a self-defensive fire-fighting capability.

One of their engineers, a military history enthusiast focussed on experimental vehicles of the Cold War era, remember reading about the Soviet “Object 279” designed to operate in the snow & mud of Russian Winters & Autumns. This became the basis for the design of the hull of the vehicle.

Obviously it did not need to be as heavily armoured as a battle tank, so the outer shell was limited to a maximum of 30mm of steel at its thickest & insulation layers behind that. Two Cummins V6 diesel engines replaced the single massive engine used in the Soviet design. Eight integrated water jets were fitted around the vehicle (later models would get remote-controlled nozzles fitted to the arms, so that water could be directed more actively at the fire) supplied from a large central tank below the double-arm unit. The double-arm unit was given increased internal fire protection, & fireproof & heat resistant glazing was used throughout. The smaller arm was fitted with a circular saw cutting blade, so trees could at least be cut & laid down (if they couldn’t be removed), reducing the chance of them becoming torches of flame 100s of metres tall. The four sets of tracks, although something of a maintenance nightmare, gave the vehicle an extremely low ground pressure, unless the central water tank was full, when it was merely “low”. This was a requirement specifically for the South East of South Australia & South Western Victoria, which were a large limestone region with a high potential for sinkholes.

The pictured vehicle is based in the small township of Kalangadoo in the South East of South Australia as part of the SA Country Fire Service’s regional immediate response unit.

Many, many thanks to Kit “PR19_Kit” Spackman for the CFS specific decals (Kit’s Dekals)! :bow: :bow:

Enjoy the pictures! :thumbsup:

Cheers! :cheers:



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