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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

Living in the colonies (Canada), there are some forms of automotive sport that get very little coverage on this side of the pond.

I recently discovered Dakar style 4x4 off road support truck racing and would like to build one. I have sourced a Revell 1/35th scale model of a Mercedes Unimog 1300L and plan to convert a Ninco offroad truck into one of the toughest trucks on the planet.

I have been googling for pictures of the real trucks and have not been having able to find more than a handful online, even at the Dakar race website. I'll probably end up with a fantasy livery of my own creation but would like to see some real trucks first.

Can anyone recommend some websites that would feature various teams and their truck liveries? I would also be interested to know if there are have been any dominant teams over the years. I hope that closer proximity to the race series also means better access to information about the teams and trucks in it.

Really, any links about heavy truck off road racing would be appreciated.

I know it sound a little crazy as a slot project. A Unimog is not an esthetically pleasing or particularily fast as a classic ferrari but if you're going to race trucks; race great big ugly ones... or better yet race big ugly ones cross country through the desert.



Just to prove I am not alone in my madness here one some folks that have inspired my madness:
Desert RAID track

And for those who haven't seen a Unimog:
Unimog1
Unimog2
 

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Thanks to Difflock and Sidewinder for the excellent links, and to attic_racer for his Unimog photos.

Attic_racer, you are far from alone in your madness. I started a similar project about a year ago but got bogged down by the lack of reference material, then I got distracted by other projects. Perhaps I'll resurrect this one now. I'm also using the Revell 1:35 Unimog, but I plan to make my own drop arm chassis to fit into it (see previous topic). The advantage of using a home made chassis is it's cheap and you can make the wheel base fit the vehicle. Also the drop arm can be as long as you like - I make mine about the same length as the old SCX TT drop arms. However there's no suspension (yet) and it's only 2wd. I also have a Tamiya Mini 4wd Unimog which I intend to convert one day. I'm slowly building up a collection of off-road slots with drop arms which I run on my TT circuit. If you want more info on any of this let me know. In the meantime, good luck with your Unimog and let us know how it works out.


mdhnn
 

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Thanks mdhnn Difflock and Sidewinder for the links.

MDhnn: The bug looks great! I may look at building a scratch chassis with a drop arm but I have my heart set on some kind of supension. I'll have to see what the kit looks like when it gets here. By the way what is the wheelbase on the Revell 1300L? I can start planning a chassis while I wait for Canada Post to route my kit via Antartica.

After more googling and finding several big teams, none of which are running Unimogs, I have a theory on why there is a shortage of Dakar 'mog pictures.

Is it possible that the big name teams are all running really big expensive trucks (Travla Kamaz etc.) and the relative newcomers, privateers and amatures are competing in smaller (cheaper?) unimogs?

Less funding means less sponsorship and less coverage and bingo! lots of unimogs on the course and almost zero pictures on the web...

Anyone else want to comment on my theory or have a buddy that has pictures of their privateer rig? (If I had a buddy with the cash to run a Unimog in Dakar I probably would be building the slotcar version...)

Greg
 

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Just in case we're talking at cross purposes I'd like to point out that the Revell Unimog I have is the 'Lkw 2t tmilgl'. Is this the same as the 1300L? The wheelbase of this kit is about 83mm. I say about because it's hard to make an exact measurement when the kit is not yet assembled. This kit has 190 parts of which maybe 30 or so go to make up the cab and the body. These are all held together by the chassis which is a ladder type with about 100 small bits to fix to it (engine, suspension, steering etc). My idea was to use the cab and maybe part of the chassis and ditch the rest. This would make the wheelbase of the kit irrelevant. I'd replace the back with a construction of my own which hopefully would look something like a Dakar competitor. That's where I got stuck ...

I hope this helps.


I did find one half decent photo of what claims to be a dakar Unimog here but I suspect it may only be a support vehicle.

Regards,

mdhnn
 

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I believe they are one and the same. The 1300L would be a civilian designation that I have seen for surplus german trucks and 'Lkw 2t tmilgl' would be what the german military call it.

The beauty of Dakar is that even the support vehicles can compete. The unimog in your post has number 402 on it so I think its racing.

I'm pretty sure the custom box of Unimog2 in my original post is pretty common for a Dakar suport/race truck. Unfortunatly the website that picture came from did not have a rear shot to get the door detail. Otherwise it looks pretty simple to construct.

I also suspect that some teams get buy with a canvas top like the Unimog1 picture. This would be even easier as we might get away with using the soft top that comes with the Revell kit.

I inquire about wheelbase because I may slip a Ninco Pro Truck or Pajero chassis under the Unimog as a quick and dirty way to get a supension and running gear. I know it's not exactly scratch building but it would get me racing sooner. If that doesn't work then I will have to figure out my own way to get a working suspension...

Cheers,
Greg
 

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You could try checking the entry list on the dakar web site and then looking for a web site connected with some of the smaller teams . A priveteer biker from england had a daily blow by blow account of his attempt last year which I followed , he was taken out by a french buggy very early on . Also if you want the official Dakar logo,s there are
usually on some of the documents in the download section , they are very high quality ,
I made my own T shirt last year !

Richard
 

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A Unimog? I think there is a restored one down the street from me. It's a military vehicle that has a fabric cover over the bed, if I remember correctly. I don't go down that section of street too often. The nut, uh, guy that owns it drives it around on weekends
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
a Bill:
Yeah a Unimog has a face only an engineer could love, but they look pretty cool decked out for a Dakar race. And it takes a certain kind of cojones to fly a 5 ton truck over the dunes of the Sahel.

I'd own one if I could justify (and afford!) it. That likely puts me in the same nutty category as your guy up the road. I'd like to drive one in the Dakar too but the money thing comes up again. (Never mind the missus objecting to me making her a widow by getting killed in a race in North Africa...)

In my own defense I think that building one to race in the basement is a milder (and safer) form of madness than owning and racing the real thing.

I am now trying to track down a used Ninco Pajero to slide under the model to get 4x4 and supension. It can be very used as long as it runs since I'm going to cannibalize the running gear and maybe the drivers for Project Unimog.

Cheers,
Greg
 

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Jim Moyes
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For Unimog fans based in the UK, keep an eye out for the next incarnation of Scrapheap Challenge/Rally/whatever-they-call-it. I think filming starts in October, so probably not on TV till next year.

Mr.M (taps side of nose with finger)
 

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Out of interest, 'Welly Die Casting make a 1/32nd Unimog model.... (Not so sure about the trailers and loads though...)

Unimog Models
 
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