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Heng Long ZTZ-99

Old 05-15-2020, 04:53 PM
  #1  
tankme
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Default Heng Long ZTZ-99

This is the Heng Long ZTZ-99 (non-A) model. It is a closeout I got on Matomart: http://www.matomart.com/prodview.php?p=1136

Ended up being right at $185 USD shipped to my door from Canada and it got here in 7 days. It does have the zinc gearboxes, but I already have a set of steel gearboxes to put in it that I removed from my HL Abrams. Came with the metal tracks/sprockets/idlers, spare metal track links, the plastic tracks/sprockets/idlers, and spare plastic track. Road wheels are plastic. Metal tracks are single pin. I want to just weather this one up and make it battle capable so I don't care that it came with the old crystal based TX/RX system. It is amazing just how huge modern tanks are compared to WW2 vehicles. I have only one regret, I should've added the ZTZ-99 mesh engine deck grills to my order. You can see the size difference as compared to my SU-152 which of course is based on a not so small KV-1 tank. The running gear is very similar to the T90/72 so I found this information on Wikipedia very interesting:

The development of China's domestic third generation MBT was started in 1989, under China's eighth five-year plan. In the early 1990s China produced one of its second generation prototypes, the Type 90-II series. The Type 90-II was designed by studying the T-72 tank.[6] The chassis was to be based on the T-72's hull but with Chinese subsystems.[7] The Type 90-II had a 125mm smoothbore cannon with an autoloader, modular composite armor and a centered driver position.[6][8] While the Type 90-II series ultimately did not enter PLA service, it saw success as an export tank and was built under license in Pakistan as the Al-Khalid.[6][9][10]

The Type 98 or WZ-123 was China's domestic Type 90-II derivative.[6] It was first seen in rehearsals for the 1999 National Day parade and was officially revealed on 1 October 1999.[11][12][13][14]

An improved version was shortly produced and was named the Type 98G or Type 99.[7]

An updated Type 99 model was officially introduced at the 2015 Victory Day Parade as the Type 99A.[15][16] This variant had previously been used by PLA troops during the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) military exercises in 2014.[17]



Old 05-16-2020, 11:45 AM
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Pcomm1.v2
 
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Default The over looked HL ZTZ 99.

The ZTZ 99 is a fine candidate for a good running, competitive RC IR tank. Agree, it is a fine looking model; a larger modern RC tank and I had fun with mine. Converted the base example to a Tamiya JS2 electronics package, as I like the solid, reliable, plug and play nature of their controllers. Though, I do not like metal tracks for out door running; as they generally over stress the running gear and prematurely wear out any plastic RC tank. Plastic tracks are cheap to replace and not difficult to repair. Upgraded the motors to 400, but kept the plastic gearboxes, as they run quiet and are cheap and easy to replace when they do break. All in all the HL ZTZ 99 project can be converted into a relatively inexpensive, good looking and running RC IR tank.

John



Later, repainted the model as a practice example for my Tamiya Type 10 RC IR tank build. Looked way better than the People’s Army Tank Camouflage, LOL, but that is just my opinion.







Last edited by Pcomm1.v2; 05-16-2020 at 12:39 PM.
Old 05-17-2020, 03:51 PM
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been wanting to get one of these i painted this one for Matomart a long time ago
Old 11-22-2020, 03:44 PM
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tankme
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Did my first mod to my ZTZ-99. This model is technically a Type 98, but that's neither here nor there. I modified an RC Tank Legion adjustable idler tensioner and brace kit from the T-72/T-90 they sell. It looked like it would work out of the bag, but I had to do some tweaking to get it to fit. Overall it was a good mod and really helps stiffen up the front of the tank for use with the metal tracks.


This is the before shot. It takes a phillips head screwdriver inserted into the small center hole in the idler to remove the screw holding the idler on.


Once the idler is removed there is a small barrel like piece glued in the circle that must be removed. I just pried it off with a flathead screwdriver.


The old flimsy hub needs to be removed and some material from the fake dozer blade to make room for the brace mounts.


The area in the triangle was flattened and two 2mm holes were drilled using the brace as a guide to drill.


The brace itself needed to be shortened to 47mm to fit inside the ZTZ hull.


Shown installed. The lower hex head didn't come with any nuts to hold them in so I supplied my own M3 nuts which went on the inside.


Bottom shot of the brace/idler assembly.


Due to how far the brace sticks out I had to remove part of the sprocket hub. I removed the brass bushing from the plastic sprocket and bored the idler to 8mm on my lathe to accept the brass bushing. I may fit bearings later, but the bushing is fine for now.


Bushing installed in the metal idler. Bushing needed to be bored to 7mm to accept the new idler shaft.


Track alignment is great after modding the sprocket.


Metal tracks installed that came with the tank.





Old 11-22-2020, 10:20 PM
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tankme
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Still waiting on the SU-152 paint so the ZTZ is going to some more love. I found some 5/8" wooden dowel walking through the craft section at Walmart. According to sources I read the "unditching log" is roughly 30-35cm in diameter so the 5/8" dowel works. The log should be 25-30cm for smaller, lighter vehicles like the BMP and T-55A. I had to use a small drum sander to make the mounts fit the log better, but then soldered up some straps out of leftover PE frames and brass rod. I am going to order some fuel drums to mount on the back also. The newer version of these tanks don't come with them.



Shot from below.

Old 11-24-2020, 09:15 AM
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I had the 99A and it didn't come with fuel tanks, either. So, I made my own. Of course, I foolishly made the first set out of nylon only to discover that no paint known to man will stick to nylon. The second set worked out pretty good and they went with the tank when I sold it. That's the tank I used to try out the 360 water pump motors and with 3:1 gearboxes I was able to get a scale 45 miles per hour. There are videos of all that up at my YouTube channel.
Old 11-24-2020, 09:48 AM
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tankme
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I picked up the fuel tanks on AliExpress for like $2/piece. They also had the holders meant for the tanks for like $1.99/pair. Saves me work fabricating stuff. I picked up the tank on a whim, but the tank is growing on me. I have the rear PE grills on the way also to cover those huge vent openings. I have a PLA paint set arriving from Mig that just arrived this morning to hopefully match the paint on it or repaint it. I did a test run with the new tracks and those crap pot metal gearboxes have got to go. I'm seriously considering the T-72 all metal HL hull. If I do put it on my T-72 the metal wheels, suspension arms, and gearboxes from T-72 will be transplanted onto the ZTZ as the metal chassis comes with all of that stuff that I have already. Two tanks upgraded with one purchase. The Abrams gearboxes I have won't fit as they are the High/Low versions and this tank needs the Mid/Low gearboxes. I can offset some of the purchase of the metal hull by selling the metal tracks that come with it and the plastic set from the ZTZ.
Old 12-08-2020, 08:19 AM
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tankme
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Further progress on the tank - magnets installed. At this point the 10mm N52 rated magnets are so strong that you can pick up the tank from the upper hull and it won't come apart.


You can also see that I switched the connector over to an XT-60 and will be running the tank off a 7AH 18650 Li-Ion battery pack. Also installed a large metal turret ring I had here that will be mated to a metal (fast) rotation unit. Magnets are the countersunk variety so you need to order both north and south versions.

I think I may switch my T34s over to Clark boards so that I can install my Open Panzer TCB in this tank. There is tons of room for the ESCs and the TCB board.
Old 12-09-2020, 04:59 AM
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I really like this model. Good thread!
Old 12-19-2020, 01:27 PM
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tankme
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Some further work on the redheaded step child...



Got magnets installed in the turret for easy maintenance.



Also got a Clark TBU base installed. The wires are hot glued to ensure they don't fall out.



Had to remove a little material on the inside of the area to fit the apple in it. Got the idea to mount it in this spot from another ZTZ build here at RCU. Idea works great.



Apple installed.



And for those times when the apple is not being used I can install the cover and no one is the wiser.
Old 12-20-2020, 04:55 PM
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tankme
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So continuing on the budget build of the Type 98 I did install and test my Open Panzer TCB in it today. I had a close call though as I moved the electronics from my T34/76 build over to this one. I found that the HL switches wouldn't take the current of the ESCs and the TCB through the switch so I removed the inline switch and just connect the battery via the XT60 when I want it powered up. I never had a chance to test everything after installing it into the T34 and fabbing the Y cable to the ESCs/TCB. I normally look every connection over the first time I put power to something, but not this time. I stupidly just connected everything. Next thing I heard was a little sizzle and then another. I was like "OH, CRAP". I grabbed the XT60 and yanked it apart watching the insulation start to melt off the wire going to the Y cable. I had soldered the XT60 main power connector backwards. The Li-Ion battery was almost to hot to hold onto and every power wire was hot to the touch. I thought the project was about to take an abrupt break. I cut out the bad wires, resoldered the XT60, grabbed a different battery, and retested everything one piece at a time. First ESC...works...then the second....works...then the TCB...works. I was so happy nothing fried. After the battery cooled off I tested it also and it seems to work just fine. I was grateful it was Li-Ion as it probably would've caught fire if it had been a Li-Po.

Electronics are roughed in. It uses the Open Panzer TCB, a Taigen Leopard 2A6 sound card, dual HobbyKing X-Car 45A Brushed Car ESCs, Taigen 390 motors, steel gearboxes out of my T-72, and a tiny FrSky XM+ Sbus receiver. The T-72 is getting a metal hull that comes with new gearboxes so it will run on the old zinc ones out of the ZTZ for now. The ZTZ is supposed to use a German 12 cylinder motor which is why the chassis is long even though it is based on the T-72. Therefore I used the Leo 2A6 sound card because the engine sound. Will also be using the metal wheels and suspension arms from the T-72 metal chassis as my T-72 already has time and they are the same as the ZTZ wheels.



​​​​​​​Next....upper hull wiring and mechanicals.
Old 12-23-2020, 02:35 AM
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That was a close call with the electrics. If i use a hard case battery in a tank with no working hatch have a switch and fuse bonded onto case. Its also good for testing the wiring on builds.

Hard case battery mod.
Old 01-04-2021, 01:22 PM
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tankme
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Got some more work done on this tank.



Engine grills and spare fuel barrels installed. Had to attach the grills with a flexible adhesive as the upper hull flexed too much and would break the super glue loose taking the top off.



had to remove the LED lights in the rear as I mistakenly blew them out. I failed to see the note about the Open Panzer TCB that says it puts full power to the LED ports on the board and that I would need resistors. I have replacement LEDs coming in the mail today - WITH resistors.



I was going to mount the IR emitter in the barrel with the flash, but it was pretty cramped so I mounted it in the mantlet. I will be using a Taigen Xenon flash unit in the barrel that I salvaged from another tank.
Old 01-04-2021, 02:23 PM
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I used one of the two TCB's I got in a upgraded M41 Walker Bull Dog no lights on it used a Benedini TBS Mini in it did not get a lot of sound on it he has a newer one out now with a bigger on board amp but am thinking of trying a Taigen sound card in it see how it works .
Thanks
Jimmy
Old 01-04-2021, 03:35 PM
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tankme
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I'm using the Taigen sound card in mine. Volume is pretty loud although the Benedini probably has better sound. What about adding an amp to the Benedini instead?
Old 01-04-2021, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by tankme View Post
I'm using the Taigen sound card in mine. Volume is pretty loud although the Benedini probably has better sound. What about adding an amp to the Benedini instead?
I contacted Thomas about and amp he has one but was not sending anything over to the states at that time due to Covid restrictions on packages last spring have not tried again may have to check with him see if he's sending now but with the new lock downs with the new covid strain coming out of the UK they mite be restricted again on the flight over here again .
Thanks
Jimmy
Old 02-06-2021, 02:09 AM
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tankme
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After what seemed like endless soldering I got all the blown LEDs replaced and added a few more. The tail lights actually act as three independent light circuits now instead of just one. The lighting arrangement might not be accurate, but it is more interesting than the way they worked before. Everything except the smoker is wired up and functional now. The track alignment issues are gone with the help of the 8mm shaft collars on the drive shafts. The internal bracing and resin filled lower hull has fixed the flexing issue. I did order the metal wheels and suspension arms, but they have not arrived yet. That will be the last mod before painting. There is a YouTube video at the end showing how everything works.


3mm and 5mm factory flat top LEDs.


All new LEDs installed.


The flat top LEDs just look more like lenses than the original round top ones.


Rear flat top LEDs.


The mess of wiring for all the LEDs. I should've gone out and gotten smaller wire in hindsight.


Shot of the resin filled lower and the bracing. I actually added a cross brace just in front of the gearboxes that is shown in the previous pic.


Better shot of the resin pour.


New barrel recoil/elevation unit.


Taigen xenon flash unit installed.




Last edited by tankme; 02-06-2021 at 02:14 AM.
Old 03-07-2021, 11:20 PM
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Got the camo repainted in some more accurate colors. Next up weathering.





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