Picture of R/C replica WW1 tank
I wanted a remote control World War 1 tank.  So I made one.

This instructable is going to be more of a general process than a step by step as a step by step would be 50 pages long.  I am going to cover the process by which I tackled this project in the following categories:
-planning (super important!!!)
-building the track structure
-building the body structure
-detailing the whole thing
-putting in the servos to drive the tank
-finishing the tank

Here is what I used to make this  replica:
-MDF.  I used a number of sheets of 3mm MDF for the big flat parts of the tank
-3/16 steel rod for axles for the 56 wheels
-hundreds of small nails for rivet heads
-3 rolls of PLA plastic for the 3D printed parts
-lots of glue
-a plethora of patience

Tools used:
-drill press
-metal saw
-3D printer
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Step 1: Planning

Picture of Planning
Planning planning planning.  The first thing I did in this project is to figure out what the heck I wanted the thing to look like.  For that I gathered as many pictures of the Mark IV tank from WW1 as I could. Just finding good photo reference for a vehicle this old can be tricky.

Then I found some line drawings of orthographic views of the tank.  This was a huge help!  I printed these orthographic views up in the exact size I wanted the final tank to be.  These line drawings would pretty much dictate sizes for everything.

Sweet!! I love WWI and WWii

manueldthomas3 months ago


since I noticed the post and your excellent work!!!. I have been looking for the orthographic views and believe me ...I can not find anything decent ...... and I usually find anything :) any help?



Tormentory1 year ago
I just used filament to hold my track pads together. My goal was to print the whole track but I did end up buying 8 bolts and lock nuts. You sure spent a lot of time on yours. It looks great. I have not finished printing all my track pads yet. Last Minuit I decided to upgrade them and add paddles that retract. I will post the new ones when i get them done.
Look up RC Tracks by Tory
8bitwood (author)  Tormentory1 year ago
making the tracks is a LOT of work. I've actually made 2 additional tanks since this one. A WWII T34 and I am working now on a T80. The T80 has 830 separate pieces for the tracks and 24 feet of wire holding them together. I'll have to put up an instructable on them...
agodinhost1 year ago
fantastic job man.
Amazing work! Are you thinking of selling the stl files for 3D printers?
The Rc Replica WW1 Tank is something most people have probably never heard of, but enthusiasts of World War I history are likely to be quite familiar with this vehicle.

I have always been greatly impressed with this model, This is a fantastic little kit of a relatively obscure subject. Anyone interested in starting armor collection or interested in World War I vehicles would do well to take a serious look at this kit.
You must have really wanted one.
3D printing is amazing
wobbler1 year ago
Absolutely fantastic design and well executed construction. 3D printing is going to revolutionise model making and many other fields as well.
8bitwood (author)  wobbler1 year ago
I totally agree regarding the treads. This was my first project using 3D printing...I knew I wanted to make a tank and so I charged in on making treads that would work...I ended up pretty far along before I looked and said 'yeah they work....but they don't look right...' by then it was a bit too late. Rather than go back and redo the treads on this tank I've moved onto a new tank project....a more detailed replica of a Russian T34. Fully modeled treads! Working suspension and hatches that all work... should be ready to show soon.

thanks for the comments!
katsmeat1 year ago
PS.... how did you mount the motors in the limited space in the track assemblies? Or did you put them in the main body and have some kind of drive going out to the sprockets?

Or was there space for the servos? Presumably if the speed was kept to a realistic slow crawl, small motors, geared down to low rpm, could be torquey enough.
katsmeat1 year ago
That is darn near professional. And being such a big scale (I'm guessing it's about 50cm long, about 1/16 scale) must make it hugely impressive, especially when crawling over stuff.

As a little bit of a WW1 tank geek, the single thing that detracts from it for me is that the tracks don't look right. This picture of a surviving Mark IV in a museum, shows the real thing. But from the research you obviously did, you must know perfectly well what the original tracks looked like; I assume practical issues prevented you making the model ones a closer match.

mammasboy1 year ago
:O that is ridiculous! it looks like it was made professionally! tops to you my friend, now all you need to do is mount a couple of bb guns in place of the main guns :D
Very Nice
Where I can get those Plastic link which are
working like belts 2
8bitwood (author)  sandeep lokhande1 year ago
Do you mean the treads? I can post the STL files for the treads....if you look around thingiverse you can find some too.
Yes traders
also for servo motor
shrill onicill
cj86751 year ago
hey man awsome job if u want to mass produce them you can hit me up i have a shopbot cnc router and i think these would be a big hit in the local hobby shops. if this sounds interesting you can also text me at 2034892527
thegreat581 year ago
This is a great replica of a Mark IV tank, I play around with rc tanks and always thought the rc tank makers missed the boat by not offering WW1 tanks, Tanks like the MarkIV, the Ford, and the Renault were so cool looking. Great job, you may want to take a look at and have a look at their WW1 tank paper models for ideas.
Azzurro1 year ago
Indiana Jones! :D Coolness, great ins.
Gamer Guy1 year ago
vstarboy1 year ago
Do you have a video?
Awesome! Great job
8bitwood (author)  number8wire1 year ago
Ha! I'll have to get on that! Currently my time is taken up with building a scratch T80 RC tank.
Amazing and love it. You have so much talent it's crazy. Also would like to see the wall in the last pic it looks interesting
8bitwood (author)  redfoxtrystman1 year ago
The back wall is stained wood pixel art that I also make. I have an instruct able that shows a bunch of my artwork. Check it out!
pecker1 year ago
That is mighty impressive.
How many man-hours do you reckon it took to complete it?
8bitwood (author)  pecker1 year ago
I would say 50 hours of printing and 90 hours of assembly. I had to learn 3D modeling to make the pieces...that took some time!
tdawg19781 year ago
Almost like the tank in Indiana Jones ATLC! A little different shape and had a cannon for it's main gun.
SC_Lane1 year ago
Holy Cow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That's crazy good!!!!!!!
'plethora of patience' = pleasing payoff :)
Radical! It's the tank from Indiana Jones: and the Last Crusade.. minus the top gun turret. Fantastic design and craftsmanship.
excellent, great detail and well done on making it RC as well.
Why can everyone make such badass things?!?
Phil B1 year ago
You did a really fine job. I saw one of these in real life at Ft. Knox's outdoor tank museum in Kentucky.