Willys Hotchkiss Jeeps
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Diary
 

Bovington Panhard laid bare! (happy christmas!!)
25/12/2010
 

Due to the temperature out in the barn and the depth of snow - the Panhard resto has had to take a back seat.

We had a major issue with the wiring before the wiinter set in....I know I said I hated brakes - well that has now been surpassed by my passionate dislike of wiring..

Anyone have a wiring diagram???... thought not... so now I'm dealing with re wiring an armoured car where every wire is white... and I don't have a diagram..its like exploring  Outer Mongolia without an OS map..

To try and help out I contacted Bovington Tank Museum as they have a Panhard AML 60 in a complete condition - excellent, loads of pictures and we can fatham out the wiring..... maybe...

Due to a rejig of the collection they were very busy but were extremely accommodating and helpful when I turned up on thier doorstep un announced and armed with only a weak blag....- thanks Bovington..

I was given complete access to the Bovington AML.  I haven't seen any pictures of a complete AML internally (a few exist of the AML 90's..) so it was a chance of a lifetime to get a 'warts and all' photographic record of this iconic vehicle.

I was pretty excited as it has the only still fitted 60mm low pressure mortar I know of still in the turret.  The AA52s had long gone - but I'm trying to reconstruct a 60mm mortar for my turret so to get to see a real one in situ was worth its weight in gold.

First thing that struck me entering the tank was how small it was with all the kit fitted.  The turret was minute and with three grown men in the hull it was snug to say the least.  I also noticed if the turret was rotated it obstructed the driver and he couldn't leave the vehicle! He would have to remove the steering wheel (interestingly a revised quick release system in the centre of the wheel in the Bovington tank that is a little less complicated than the original version I am used to)  he would have to remove the wheel, stand up and try to exit the vehicle through the hatch above the driving position.  I simply would not be able to do this - you either have to be thin as a racing snake or about 12... I would not want to be caught in the vehicle if the turret was facing to the rear and there was a fire - toasted french recruit - yummm.  Mental note to myself ' fit a fire extinguisher system'...if you ever want to rotate the turret whilst moving...

Interestingly the brake resevoirs in the Bovington tank were broken off and sat at the front of the hull in a shattered state.  Upon speaking to the Bovington representative this tank hadn't ever driven it was always towed/ pushed into position. Looking at the broken braking system this wasn't a surprise.

The interior was very dusty and interestingly the french or UK authorities had stuck radiation signs on any object that glowed - very tight Health and Safety - but not much help as you couldn't read the dials!!

Many pictures later (some to the right) the wiring system was mapped and the turret cage fully recorded.

So heres some pictures for you.  I guess these are the only pictures of the interior available - and the only fully equipped AML60 interior on the net!  Enjoy modellers and any rivet counters who may be interested!!

Pictures speak for themselves.. apart from last picture that is the floor of tank under the turret basket.. you can see the vehicle wiring for the turret (in the box in the middle of the picture)..

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