LEGO Unimog with remote control – Notes

LEGO Unimog
LEGO Unimog

The LEGO Unimog is equipped with a variety of functions, but unfortunately not with a remote control. With a little skill, you can retrofit the vehicle. There are different possibilities for this.

Basic information about the LEGO Unimog

The kit originally contains a motor and pneumatics. This means that it is already equipped with a battery holder and can be driven and steered. If you want to retrofit the vehicle with remote control, you still have to install additional batteries and at least one receiver.

The valves in LEGO pneumatics cannot normally be operated via a remote control. If you also want remote control of these functions, you need solenoid valves. In theory, you can also have the switches operated by a motor.

You can also have the functions that are controlled via the pneumatics carried out via additional motors. For this reason, many inventors install several M motors in order to move the steering and the gripper. Because the Unimog is heavy, you need a different engine to drive it, the XL engine has enough power for this purpose. When you replace the engine in the vehicle, you usually also need to replace the transmission gears on the 4 wheels.

If you already have a remote control for a train or a racing car, for example, it makes sense to build the remote control on top of this.

Methods to equip the vehicle with remote control

One way to operate the LEGO Unimog with a remote control is to use a conventional remote control and associated servos. Attach the servos to operate the existing switches. In this way, you don’t need to modify the vehicle much, because the pneumatics and drive motor remain unchanged. Since the vehicle has plenty of room to house a receiver and the servos, this method is feasible and fairly easy to implement. If you already own a remote control, you should try it this way.

It is a bit more complex if you provide the pneumatics with solenoid valves instead of the existing switches and open and close them via impulses from the receiver of the remote control. This way also only makes sense if the remote control is already available.

If you decide to use the LEGO remote control, you cannot use conventional servos and receivers because LEGO technology is based on infrared. In this case, you should install M and XL motors with the associated infrared receivers.

No matter which method you choose, so that the vehicle can be steered itself, you must install a motor under the driver’s cab that can move the gears that belong to the vehicle’s original steering system. This can be a conventional servo or an M motor. Make your selection based on the type of remote control you have chosen.

Remote control does not work – what to do?

If you have the feeling that the remote control for the Lego Unimog is no longer working, then you could check whether it is actually the remote control or whether the fault lies with the Lego Unimog itself:

  1. Set up a digital camera opposite the Lego Unimog.
  2. Turn on this camera and operate a button/lever on the remote controller.
  3. If the remote control is OK, you will see the diodes light up in the digital camera.
  4. If this is not the case, then in the next step you should check whether the batteries in the remote control have been inserted correctly and whether they still have enough power.
  5. You can also test the batteries by buying new batteries and inserting them into the remote control.

If, after the statements above, you come to the conclusion that the remote control is not defective, then you could proceed as follows:

  1. Use a cleaning agent that is also capable of dissolving grease.
  2. For example, you could use dish soap or a window cleaner.
  3. Now spray the infrared spots on the Lego Unimog and on the remote control (that would be the transmitter on the remote control and the receiver on the Unimog).
  4. Clean both infrared spots with a soft, lint-free cloth.
  5. Now test again whether the remote control works.
  6. If the remote control works, you can also clean all components on the Unimog that should move and check whether they can be moved freely. Greater protection may have stepped in preventing movement.

If the remote control on the Lego Unimog still doesn’t work, then you should contact Lego directly. You can find the necessary contact details on the Lego website .

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