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Jehlik's Armoured Vehicle, 1916 – Scratching Jehlik's Ridiculous Roller. - COMPLETE!!

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I like building weird stuff, but how could I possibly out weird my previous scratch-build?

Let me introduce Jehlik's Armoured Vehicle. One of the oddest and least practical designs ever conjured up.

1+Jehliks+Armoured+Vehicle.png

 

Like the Holt Field Monitor, not even the Americans were mad enough to actually build it. The only evidence for it is in the United States Patent Office – patent US1195680A. The patent has two cutaway views from the top and the side and a description which unfortunately has been run through a dyslexic character recognition program translating words like 'vehicle' into 've- 1,195,eeo'.

This is it in comparison with the, more or less contemporary Holt whopper:

2+Comparison.jpg

 

Silly isn't it? Sillier still when you know that the big roller is on the front and the offensive armament is pointing backwards. Anton J Jehlik was mad. Madder than the maddest mad thing ever to hop though madland. My kind of guy. :smiling:

The top cutaway view shows the full horror of Jehliks myopic vision:

4+Top+view.jpg

Perhaps Jehlik was over compensating for something - this thing was intended to be huge… sort of … Jehlik was a bit unspecific about dimensions. He mentioned two different sizes for the diameter of the front roller, 20' or 30' (yes, feet!). The green and the red profiles show the variation between the two sizes Jehlik mentioned:

3+Size+variation.jpg

 

The side view cutaway on the patent shows a driver figure, so I scaled the vehicle to the scale of the driver – which coincidentally, is half way between both extremes (shown as lovely lavender in the above pic). Building it mid way between the two size extremes, feels like a bit of a fudge. If they had ever tried to build it, it's most likely they would have gone for the smaller 20' roller size as 30' is way beyond ridiculous.

This is the side cutaway view from the Patent, showing all the fabulous innovations that would kick the kaisers butt back to Berlin - I'll be mentioning a few in future episodes.

5+Side+view.jpg

Because of the size of this thing, I'm abandoning my beloved 1/48 and will be heading into the seedy, unnatural world of 1/72 :(. One advantage of using this scale is there are American and German WWI figures available for a reasonable price – although they are the ancient Airfix things. It'll make it a lot easier to do a dio. It'll still be big in 1/72, 220mm (8.5”) long and 175mm (7”) wide.

This isn't going to a slavish copy of Jehlik's design. There are some things that I've added or altered slightly to make the vehicle less… erm… totally useless. I like to think of it as the Mk.II design. Although it would probably need to get to Mk.XXVIIMXVIII and look nothing like the original before it would be considered an asset. As an example of one of my changes, the patent views shows nicely rounded edges on the bodywork, but I can't think of any advantage – it would have looked nice, but that's about it. Considering the thickness of the armour Jehlik intended to use, doing beautifully rounded edges on the real monster would have been a LOT more trouble to manufacture than it would be worth. It also made my build a little easier.

Another thing I'll be reducing other than the scale, is the waffle. I had a bit of a revelation. It occurred to me that this is a modelling site so I should talk about sticking bits of plastic together. Now that the world is trying to get back to normal I haven't the time to rabbit on endlessly - this retirement business is all-go you know.

Another thing other than the 'another thing' I mentioned above is that I have actually completed building the ridiculous roller. My head has been too fuzzy to do any sort of WIP to date.

Enjoy….

Edited by Gorby
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42 minutes ago, Grunhertz said:

wow this I have to see and of course the gorby running commentary 

Thanks matiepoos, welcome on board my latest land-battleship. There will be lots of words to come, but more of them will actually be about the build and the ridiculous roller itself. I got a tiny bit carried away last time. :blushing:

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3 minutes ago, Mad Steve said:

I dont think you got carried away at all Mark, its great fun reading your stuff and watching you build. 

Have you been drinking or consuming illegal substances?

Sorry I forgot. You're mad. :smiling:

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56 minutes ago, Gorby said:

Sorry I forgot. You're mad. :smiling:

Im mad....? 

Im not the one that sits on the interweb all day looking for weird sh er stuff to build... 😁

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10 minutes ago, Mad Steve said:

Im not the one that sits on the interweb all day looking for weird sh er stuff to build.

It just sort of... finds me. :ermm:

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Yeah right... innocently looking at some online model shop then BAM! some giant armoured road roller leaps out offering chocolate and whiskey for just a little look 😁

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4 minutes ago, Mad Steve said:

leaps out offering chocolate and whiskey for just a little look

For some reason it usually happens after the whisky has vanished.

It's a bloody mystery.

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1 minute ago, Grunhertz said:

I blame seam cleaning repeatedly on hasegawa kits 

I was thinking it's more like volunteering to herd us load of oiks.

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On 24/09/2020 at 19:05, Gorby said:

If they had ever tried to build it, it's most likely they would have gone for the smaller 20' roller size as 30' is way beyond ridiculous.

If it were me I'd go for beyond ridiculous every time.

 

On 24/09/2020 at 19:05, Gorby said:

Another thing I'll be reducing other than the scale, is the waffle. I had a bit of a revelation. It occurred to me that this is a modelling site so I should talk about sticking bits of plastic together. Now that the world is trying to get back to normal I haven't the time to rabbit on endlessly - this retirement business is all-go you know.

:( Maybe a little bit. Come on, you have a reputation to uphold. You don't* want me taking over where you left off, do you?

 

* "You can trust me on that!"**

** Apologies to Russell T Davies

Edited by Dr Loopy
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12 hours ago, Gorby said:

For some reason it usually happens after the whisky has vanished.

It's a bloody mystery.

You're not putting this* in your whisky are you?...

Wormwood**

50381157471_ba31c744af_b.jpg

* Artemesia absinthum

** Not the cat - that would be even worse!***

*** You'd get nasty scratches

Edited by Dr Loopy
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I know I promised less waffle, but honestly this word marathon is entirely about the subject and the build.

Originally I wasn't intending to do a WIP for this build, which is why the early part wasn't particularly well documented in photographs. Even before I started, I was well aware that this would be a much more difficult project than my previous whopper, mostly because the shape of the body is downright weird, but I didn't realise how difficult it would prove to be.

To start, I used my printed plans to mark the floor shape:

Start+1.JPG

The red circles are the five gun turrets/sponsons, but even that was variable as far as Jehlik was concerned - he said that “A greater or lesser number may be employed”. As the patent shows five, that's what I went for. Personally I'm surprised that he didn't feel the need to cram another two or even four onto his drawing. The two long odd shaped bits are the lower floor parts that fit besides the roller. I'll fit them on the right hand side (as shown above). I've done them separately so as not to waste my precious plastic supply. I did the floor in 1.5mm sheet to give it a bit of rigidity.

There was a stroke of luck with the sponsons, in 1/72 the diameter is 34mm which is the size of bathroom waste pipe for the stuff I used to plum in the sinks and the bath. Fortunately I had about a meter left. I seriously hate plumbing (along with painting, fitting doors, electrics, cleaning drains ….) but at least it's finally proved to have been useful. Not doubt someone will inform me what plastic the pipe is made from, all I know is that is bloody tough stuff. To cut the exact angle accurately it was easier to roll out the big boys toys.

Sponson+1.JPG

 

It took me a couple of days to do the first gun which has the full range of movement of the guns shown in the patent. The shield fits inside the sponson and is based on one of Jehlik's (make 'clearing my throat' noise) 'innovations'. Hopefully this diagram will make it easier for the hard-of-thinking:

Sponson+gun+movement.png

The blue shows the gun and its shield (inside the opening in the sponson) rotated to one extreme and the red shows it rotated to the other extreme. Notice that in either direction, the shield doesn't project into the main body of the vehicle. Also the shield overlaps where the gun would be in the opposite angle – thereby completely covering the opening in the sponson. So far so good. Unfortunately, satisfying those criteria means that the opening for the gun in the sponson is quite small – severely limiting the field of fire from each of the sponsons:

Sponson+Field+of+fire.jpg

Likewise Jehlik handicapped the monster with the restricted gun elevation. Notice the green rounded rectangle shape on the right of the diagram below. That's the gun shield opening. On the left the red and blue show the extremes of the gun elevation though the silly little opening:

Sponson+gun+elevation+1.png

Just as well the earth is flat, if it was a globe like some credulous fools believe, the shell would never hit the ground. As the guns are facing from where it had come from about the only thing it would be able to hit is the American officers hiding in their own trench. Apparently that's suppose to be a bad thing.

Sponson+gun+elevation+2.png

Not only are the guns facing completely the wrong way, with their dreadful field of fire and restricted elevation, they would barely be able to hit anything anyway. He may have well replaced the guns with armoured megaphones and crewed them with men highly trained in the use of the word 'BANG!'.

Even though they're next to useless, I still need to build them. The gun gubbins looks a bit of a mess, but none of it will ever been seen again. As I said, it took me a couple of days to work how best to do it and to build:

Sponson+2.JPG   Sponson+3.JPG

I wasn't looking forward to doing the other four in the same way, so I decided to glue the others in at varying angles and just tell you lot that they all had the full range of movement. You look gullible, I'm sure I can get away with it. In fact it would be foolish to spend many days reproducing the same thing four more times. An act of madness in fact. So here are all the parts for the other four guns:

Sponson+4.JPG

Sponson+6.JPG

Sponson+5.JPG

Yes, they all do work – why do I do this to myself?!?!?!

The most difficult part of the build (other than all the other most difficult parts of the build) was gluing the *$%@~ing sponsons on. God it was annoying! Not only are they next to impossible angles to clamp in place (The screws helped to give something level to clamp) but the tubes seem to repel glue.

Sponson+7.JPG     Sponson+8.JPG

It ended up taking a shed load of super glue gel and a few dozen fillets (of the non fish variety). I would say it nearly drove me mad, but I fear that journey ended long ago.

Sponson+9.JPG

 

You may be wondering why there is a hole in the floor - it was the ONLY way in or out! Jehlik thought that it would be easy to defend a locked hatch in the floor and if necessary, the monster could nimbly go into reverse and squash any naughty cold-callers (if only I could do that with the house - “Sorry dear, I didn't realise that was your brother at the door. Really I didn't. Don't bother with an ambulance, just get an envelope and we'll post him to the hospital.”). Jehlik didn't consider… hang on, hang on. We are going to encounter that a phrase so many times in this build I'll introduce you to a brand new work in progress feature!

Welcome to the - 'What on Earth Was Jehlik Thinking?' Corner.

What on Earth Was Jehlik Thinking?' Corner.

He didn't consider that if the machine gets marooned on a minor hillock, the rescue team would need to employ the worlds most heavy-duty tin-opener to stand any chance of getting the crew out. In a future episode I'll explain the armour Jehlik wanted to use on the roller beast, suffice to say, it was thick – enormously thick. Towing the monstrosity off said hillock would have been out of the question unless you happened to have a tame glacier at hand. The only option would be to dig their way out while the enemy’s artillery closed in on what is, a bloody easy target.

He also didn't consider the possibility of an engine fire, which is unfortunate for the crew in the top compartment as they would have to climb over or under the burning engines to escape (bear in mind that the engines were intended to take up the whole width of the monster):

Sponson+escape+hatch.jpg

 

You'd like to think that being protected by such thick armour, the crew would have had the safest job on the battlefield, but being entombed and jumping over fire is just the start of the hazards the job entailed. This thing would have reaped death and destruction wherever it went, but almost exclusively to it's own crew or troops, not to mention the flattened villages and villagers it rolled over on the way the battlefield. The only real danger it held for the Boche is damp underwear due to them wetting themselves laughing.

 

Next up: Errrmm, something else.

Edited by Gorby
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On 24/09/2020 at 10:05, Gorby said:

world of 1/72

I knew you would finally see the light.

I think you should get some practice on a Stirling first though :D

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2 minutes ago, Mad Steve said:

buy some PVC weld

Thanks Steve, but a bit late now. :sad:

I might pick some up for my other PVC gear though. :blushing:

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