- Tim Garrett told me about a T16 Stuart track remanufacturing program he is
involved with. It is carried out by the US Machine Corporation in
Louisville, Kentucky, USA. They remove the existing rubber from track sets
and recondition the metal components. The new rubber is mil-spec and is
molded onto the existing track link. The new rubber is the same compound as
the original with slightly different percentages of content to increase
durability. Durometer testing and abrasion testing indicates this stuff will
probably never wear out from collector usage. The original rubber is damaged
by exposure to the elements (sun, heat, rain and the like). Most collector
vehicles don't sit outside so this further increases the life of the track.
The only catch in all this glory is that the track they re-rubber has to be
in useable condition. If the track wedges are crushed or damaged they are
enormously difficult to acquire. They are currently re-threading wedges but
that adds to the cost of the rebuild. It also became necessary to construct
a hydraulic assembly to remove end connectors that were frozen on the links
from time and rust. This tool allows them to remove the links without
damaging them, even with 50 years of corrosion on the assemblies.
They are currently taking orders for T-16 track pads. These fit Stuarts, M-8
GMC's, M-5 high speed tractors and some other odd and end stuff. See
http://www.x-mascity.com/track_project/tank.html for some pictures and prices.
Now, why all this rambling about Stuart track on a Sherman mailing list?
Well, after they get caught up with the Stuart track, US Machine Corp will
start refurbishing Sherman track!
On behalf of Tim, I am posting this message to gauge interest in
remanufactured Sherman track among Sherman tank collectors. If you are
serious about having your track remanufactured, contact Tim via e-mail at
<103404.1553@...>. Please mention you read it here so Tim knows
where you got your information.
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