We took the first steps in reassembling the Renault FT. This started with the floor. All bolts had either been blasted and cleaned from original or newly made examples. Our referencing to which bolts go where had been established in our research of the many Renault FTs that we have visited and recorded in the past. CAD drawings of the interior final drive housings are forging ahead and will be completed next week in order to allow for the machining of these large aluminium castings.
Counter sunk bolts required are being manufactured here as we require them which causes a slight pause in the assembly process. The “specials” bolts have been retained from the original strip down process and those missing will have to be made. These are fortunately very few.
Our new TSF turret arrived this week. This will not only allow us to complete the existing turret, given that the crucial part missing, now delivered, is the small area just below the cupola. Many really interesting features exist in this turret unlike others that we examined previously. This will provide vital clues to aid us with the completion of the interior.