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Armor/AFV: Modern - USA
Modern Armor, AFVs, and Support vehicles.
Hosted by Darren Baker
M1074 PLS Conversion Project
HeavyArty
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Florida, United States
Joined: May 16, 2002
KitMaker: 17,034 posts
Armorama: 13,234 posts
Posted: Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 07:04 AM UTC
Following Michael "165thspc" Koenig's excellent M1120 LHS build has inspired me to start a project I have been thinking about for a while. I have begun to convert the Trumpeter M983A1 tractor and parts from Italeri's M1120 LHS into an M1074 PLS.

I have been collecting the parts since the M1120 LHS came out late last year. I have collected both kits, the Real Model M983 engine set, tires and wheels from the Hobby Boss M1070 HETS, and additional axle and suspension parts from Accurate Armour's M1070 HETS kit that I ordered from Accurate Armour.

Here is what I am building, an M1074 PLS (Paletized Load System)


So far, I have started by lengthening the frame to the 35' 6" full length of the PLS. I used two frame sections from the LHS kit to do it.



A note on the Trumpeter kit, it is awesome. So far, it has both front steering gear boxes and all linkages. Also, the transfer case is angled as it should be. Its looking good so far.

Here are the AA parts too.



More to come later.
Thirian24
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Oklahoma, United States
Joined: September 30, 2015
KitMaker: 2,491 posts
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Posted: Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 07:10 AM UTC
This is so awesome. I'll definitely be watching this.
fhvn4d
#159
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Massachusetts, United States
Joined: April 07, 2008
KitMaker: 803 posts
Armorama: 564 posts
Posted: Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 04:29 PM UTC
Really looking forward to this, I sat behind some of these for a year when I was in Iraq and want to build one of my own for a diorama idea I have of my old convoy security team getting ready for a mission.
M4A1Sherman
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New York, United States
Joined: May 02, 2013
KitMaker: 4,300 posts
Armorama: 4,078 posts
Posted: Thursday, October 06, 2016 - 05:35 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Following Michael "165thspc" Koenig's excellent M1120 LHS build has inspired me to start a project I have been thinking about for a while. I have begun to convert the Trumpeter M983A1 tractor and parts from the M1120 LHS into an M1074 PLS.

I have been collecting the parts since the M1120 LHS came out late last year. I have collected both kits, the Real Model M983 engine set, tires and wheels from the Hobby Boss M1070 HETS, and additional axle and suspension parts from Accurate Armour's M1070 HETS kit that I ordered from Accurate Armour.

Here is what I am building, an M1074 PLS (Paletized Load System)


So far, I have started by lengthening the frame to the 35' 6" full length of the PLS. I used two frame sections from the LHS kit to do it.



A note on the Trumpeter kit, it is awesome. So far, it has both front steering gear boxes and all linkages. Also, the transfer case is angled as it should be. Its looking good so far.

Here are the AA parts too.



More to come later.



WOW, Gino! Since Mike Koenig has been on that GREAT M1120 LHS, and you with your "post-war" M48s and M60, I'm developing a healthier interest for more modern US equipment and vehicles than I have had in the past, what with all of the WWII-era US stuff that I have in my display cases... I'll be following with MUCH INTEREST!!!

BTW- Our local US Army National Guard Unit (Engineers) has all kinds of great "auxiliary" vehicles and equipment! Interesting stuff!
Jack_Turmoil
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Michigan, United States
Joined: February 09, 2016
KitMaker: 80 posts
Armorama: 78 posts
Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 02:41 AM UTC
Looking forward to this build! You are inspiring me to push my scratch building skills a bit further.
HeavyArty
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Florida, United States
Joined: May 16, 2002
KitMaker: 17,034 posts
Armorama: 13,234 posts
Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 04:38 AM UTC
Thanks for the support guys. I have been working on this most of the day today, gotta love 4-day weekends in the military.

I completed the frame.



Here is the front axles. I cut the gear reduction parts off the front differential and replaced it with a non-geared diff cover. I also added the Real Model front air brakes. They look very good. Trumpeter provides the rear air brakes, but missed the front ones. The front wheels are steerable as well. Trumpeter did this area really well. I am waiting to position the wheels until later when I will attach the steering arms as well.



On the rear, I scratched the mounts for the middle axle and used the swing arms from Accurate Armour. I placed the rear axle from the kit in this position. For the rear axle, I used the Accurate Armor axle which is steerable and does not have the gear reduction. The rear axle also has steerable wheels which will be adjusted and set later as well. As luck would have it, the drive shaft needed to go between the third and fourth axle is the same length as the kit driveshaft that goes from the transmission to the transfer case. I was able to use the kit part as there is a new transmission to transfer case driveshaft in the Real Model Engine set.



The build continues....

Thirian24
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Oklahoma, United States
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 04:43 AM UTC
Great work!
165thspc
#0
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Kentucky, United States
Joined: April 13, 2011
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 06:55 AM UTC
Sweet job! Looking forward to following this one.
GulfWarrior
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Texas, United States
Joined: January 05, 2010
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 07:40 AM UTC
Lookin' good, Gino!
Taylornic
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Tennessee, United States
Joined: January 10, 2005
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 01:22 PM UTC
I have been waiting patiently for you to do this. Will be following this closely. Really good work!
M4A1Sherman
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New York, United States
Joined: May 02, 2013
KitMaker: 4,300 posts
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 04:16 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Thanks for the support guys. I have been working on this most of the day today, gotta love 4-day weekends in the military.

I completed the frame.



Here is the front axles. I cut the gear reduction parts off the front differential and replaced it with a non-geared diff cover. I also added the Real Model front air brakes. They look very good. Trumpeter provides the rear air brakes, but missed the front ones. The front wheels are steerable as well. Trumpeter did this area really well. I am waiting to position the wheels until later when I will attach the steering arms as well.



On the rear, I scratched the mounts for the middle axle and used the swing arms from Accurate Armour. I placed the rear axle from the kit in this position. For the rear axle, I used the Accurate Armor axle which is steerable and does not have the gear reduction. The rear axle also has steerable wheels which will be adjusted and set later as well. As luck would have it, the drive shaft needed to go between the third and fourth axle is the same length as the kit driveshaft that goes from the transmission to the transfer case. I was able to use the kit part as there is a new transmission to transfer case driveshaft in the Real Model Engine set.



The build continues....




Hi, Gino!

Will you be using the kit's Wheels/Tires, or will you be going to aftermarkets..?
Thirian24
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Oklahoma, United States
Joined: September 30, 2015
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 04:18 PM UTC
I believe he said he was going to use Hobby Boss M1070 wheels/tires.
HeavyArty
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Florida, United States
Joined: May 16, 2002
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 06:38 PM UTC
Thanks guys. Glad you are following along. Yes, I will be using wheels and tires from the Hobby Boss M1070 HETS that I was lucky enough to acquire. They are the same wheels since both vehicles are built by Oshkosh trucks.

One issue I found last night after I posted. It is amazing how you always find flaws when you step away from the bench and see your own pics, for me anyways. I felt like something was off, but couldn't put my finger on it, then I saw it. The suspension parts (swing arms and air bags) for the third axle were on backwards!! DOH!!! I guess I was looking at my references wrong or something. The pivot point should be at the front (left in above pics) and the air bag should be to the rear. I was able to cut it all away and swap everything around. Here is the correct configuration.



Hopefully I will keep everything straight for the rest of the build.
Burik
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New Jersey, United States
Joined: March 12, 2002
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 08:38 PM UTC
Cool stuff. What time period/environment will you be displaying it? I've noticed some interesting pics over the past few years showing some type of kevlar blanket over the fuel tank. And a Humvee-like gun shield on some HEMTTs.

Bob
Removed by original poster on 10/08/16 - 15:43:11 (GMT).
165thspc
#0
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Kentucky, United States
Joined: April 13, 2011
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 09:44 PM UTC
Gino, now you are making me want the build the Trumpeter tractor just to experience the build not to mention wanting to do a PLS of my own.

Love your scratch work on the frame mounts for the airbags and for the half-arm suspension towers!
Stickframe
#362
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California, United States
Joined: December 01, 2013
KitMaker: 1,421 posts
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 09:59 PM UTC
Hi Gino - certainly good work on an ambitious build - the chassis must be very long! Do you think you'll need any discrete stiffners to keep it straight? I imagine the ten Tires/wheels will be (relatively) heavy, and might start to create some torque when you try to move this beast. Just keeping it all equal with your splicing is impressive - that task is easier said than done.

I also have to send a genuine tip of the xacto your way for that save - as always, very clean work - looking forward to your next update! Between you and Mike (165thspc) we truck fans are getting some great viewing!

Nick
terminators
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France
Joined: February 20, 2012
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Posted: Friday, October 07, 2016 - 10:15 PM UTC
That seems a complicated conversion and built. Good luck in your project.
MAD_DUCK
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Alabama, United States
Joined: March 05, 2002
KitMaker: 431 posts
Armorama: 403 posts
Posted: Saturday, October 08, 2016 - 01:43 AM UTC
I have thought a bout building one of these. I definitely watching. I'm waiting for my Trumpeter M983 to get here so I can start my M984A1 conversion.
redleg12
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New Jersey, United States
Joined: March 11, 2007
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Posted: Saturday, October 08, 2016 - 05:41 AM UTC
Outstanding work. As for the finding stuff when you step away....it is one good reason to photo your work.

Off to a great start, keep on rowing!!

Rounds Complete!!
HeavyArty
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Florida, United States
Joined: May 16, 2002
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Posted: Saturday, October 08, 2016 - 06:13 AM UTC
Thanks Bob. I am not sure when this one will represent yet. I haven't decided if I will add the gun mount and a shield as an Iraq vehicle. I may do it as a stateside vehicle w/o a weapon. We'll see as I get further along.

Thanks to the rest of you for following along. I am really enjoying this build.

I got some more done today. I worked on the engine compartment. I decided to build it closed and just use the Italeri engine blank and added an oil pan to fill the space if it is seen from the underside. The rest of the engine is covered by panels. I also started on the accessories mounted on the fenders. Here it is so far (the cab shell is just in place to get some sense of scale).



More to come later.
Thirian24
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Oklahoma, United States
Joined: September 30, 2015
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Posted: Saturday, October 08, 2016 - 06:28 AM UTC
I'll go ahead and say it, I hope they create a kit based off of your build.
fhvn4d
#159
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Massachusetts, United States
Joined: April 07, 2008
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Posted: Saturday, October 08, 2016 - 08:24 AM UTC
Lookin GOOD Sir!!!!! Hate to say this but looking at this makes me want to build one as well!!!! I took a picture at Camp Liberty of a PLS taking a FRS away and I always thought, "someday they will build a FRS in 35th scale and I can plop it on"......

This one has a bit of a flat too... LOL




(and to be honest I had a bit of a soft spot in my heart for this particular FRS....I had spent the previous two weeks cleaning it, inventorying it, and cleaning every single item in it for turn in so it could go home with us!) I even cleaned out the foam inserts where the tools went! Was pretty proud when the Motor Sgt let me know it passed inspection and was tagged for shipping the first time (I was a heavy equipment operator MOS, sitting in a cooks slot, but doing Convoy Security duty as a TC before our missions ended... then I became the Battalion forklift operator and wash rack supervisor LOL)

HeavyArty
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Florida, United States
Joined: May 16, 2002
KitMaker: 17,034 posts
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Posted: Saturday, October 08, 2016 - 05:57 PM UTC
Dustin - thanks for the compliment. It would be cool if Trumpeter did a kit of the PLS. We'll see.

Brian - That is a cool looking version w/the FRS on back. I don't think I will be that elaborate on the load though; maybe just some arty rounds and powders on it.
M4A1Sherman
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New York, United States
Joined: May 02, 2013
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Posted: Saturday, October 08, 2016 - 08:44 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Dustin - thanks for the compliment. It would be cool if Trumpeter did a kit of the PLS. We'll see.

Brian - That is a cool looking version w/the FRS on back. I don't think I will be that elaborate on the load though; maybe just some arty rounds and powders on it.



Ohhhh... My wallet is going into heart-failure ag...ain... (gurgle)