Bruder 1:16 Toy Tractor RC conversion


I’d seen some interesting videos on YouTube of toy tractors which had been converted to operate on radio control.

I haven’t the time to build one myself, but I was interested in how they operated.  It seems that the model tractors are converted to RC using fairly basic motors and control equipment, and the outcomes are great fun.

One of the things I noticed however, was that few of the tractors appeared to have a functioning PTO system, one blogger commenting that there wasn’t enough space between the drive motors.  Believing that anything is possible, I thought I’d see if I could work it all out using Solidworks.


Here is my effort.

I will make drawings available here of all the parts, should you wish to build one yourself!



Email me your thoughts, or send pictures of how you’ve achieved it, I’d be very interested.

CFEX1555[1] Click the link (left) for a video of the mechanism.


UPDATE 17th December 2017

Since I originally posted this, I’ve had quite a bit on interest in the drawings, so I thought I’d best double-check to see if what I’d posted would actually work with a Bruder model.  So I’ve acquired a John Deere 7930 and have measured it to check clearances etc.

I have now modified my drawing, and included wheel hubs.  It turns out that there was nothing wrong with my original drawings, however I’ve been able to trim things down a little and reduce the volume of the unit.

The images below show this work in progress.  Importantly, the whole set-up will indeed fit into the confines of the model, and I hope the images show how compact the installation is.  My next plan is to extend the unit forward in the form of a central chassis to which can be added the front axle and steering servo.

I haven’t modelled the tyres accurately, but I may well do so later.  They are however to the dimensions of the Bruder model.

In these views I haven’t shown the PTO motor, however this will fit too, but I’ve had a much better idea for how to implement the PTO and so will add it when I’ve had the chance to develop it a little.  I hope over the coming week or so to upload component drawings for the required parts.

If and when I get the opportunity, I will try to build the assembly and incorporate it into the model.  Some of the original mouldings will need to be cut-away, but my plan is to upload printable templates which can be used to make this process quite straight forward.

Should you have any feedback, I’d be delighted to hear your thoughts.

Image result for rb-35 gearbox motor dimensions

These are the dimensions of the RB-35 motor/gearbox combination.  These are a popular unit for such conversions and the dimensions here should prove useful.





UPDATE 04.02.18 : I’ve uploaded a detailed video of these design thoughts so far to Youtube, please see:


2 thoughts on “Bruder 1:16 Toy Tractor RC conversion

  • January 8, 2018 at 6:53 pm

    Great plans, I have been thinking about building one of these tractors for my grandson, really struggling to buy parts required or where to purchase them any help would be great, best Regards

  • January 8, 2018 at 10:22 pm

    Hi Graham, I’ve been a little distracted from this project over the Christmas period. I hope to post the revised drawings and a parts list within the next few days. Presently I’m drawing up the front end and a chassis plate to take the steering servo. I hope to have the prototype parts laser-cut in a few days too. I’ll post how it all works out! Thanks for your interest, and do please come back and check-out the updates.


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