- One-of-a-kind production part designed to complement a high-performance exotic vehicle – delivering unmatched quality, durability and luxury
- 3D Systems’ application innovation group, DMP Factory 500, plays a key role in delivering a new part
ROCK HILL, SC, June 29, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) – 3D Systems (NYSE: DDD) today announced that Rodin Cars, New Zealand’s maker of the ultimate track car, has selected metallic additive manufacturing solutions from 3D Systems to produce spare parts for its soon-to-be released hypercar, the Rodin FZero. Rodin Cars designs and builds fully custom-made high-performance, single-seater and open-wheel vehicles, designed to be faster than contemporary Formula 1 cars. Among the hundreds of metal parts that Rodin Cars additively manufactures for the Rodin FZero, they produce a unique 8-speed sequential gearbox with a hydraulically operated differential. This fully customized component can only be produced using additive manufacturing and was made possible through the collaboration of Rodin Cars’ design prowess and in-depth application expertise and additive manufacturing leadership from 3D Systems.
A gearbox created using traditional manufacturing methods would be cast from magnesium or machined from billets. The resulting component would not only be slow to produce, but heavier and not withstand the rigors presented by the track. Rodin Cars wanted to turn this design into a true innovation – the ultimate component produced from 3D printed titanium that would be compact, light, strong and durable.
Rodin Cars released its first high-performance track car – the Rodin FZed – in 2019 with a gearbox designed by Ricardo, a UK-based engineering company. For the new Rodin FZero, Rodin Cars has designed a completely new gearbox with specific gear ratios and a titanium differential to reinforce the exotic reputation of this new high-performance vehicle. The 18-month design process – a collaboration between Rodin Cars for the housings and Ricardo for the internals – resulted in an unmatched gearbox with a hydraulically operated differential that can only be produced using additive manufacturing due to of its ability to directly 3D print the necessary internal galleries and load-bearing and assembly structures with thin walls. Rodin Cars engineers worked alongside members of 3D Systems’ Application Innovation Group (AIG) in Littleton, Colorado, and Leuven, Belgium to bring this unique design to life.
The application engineers who make up 3D Systems’ AIG have deep expertise not only in additive manufacturing, but also in high-value applications in a variety of industries, including motorsport. The technical know-how of the teams, combined with advanced direct-to-metal printing (DMP) technology from 3D Systems, facilitated production of the new gearbox which features 2mm thick walls and a total weight of 68 kilograms. Littleton’s application engineers optimized the design details of the gearbox printing for the large-scale additive manufacturing achievable on the DMP Factory 500 and produced the first part on its DMP Factory 500 in Leuven. This industry-leading solution – featuring a vacuum chamber to ensure the lowest O2 content – enables the production of large seamless parts as large as 500mm x 500mm x 500mm. This results in the highest surface quality for 3D printed metal parts with outstanding material properties. AIG from 3D Systems has successfully completed the technology transfer to Rodin Cars for full production. Rodin Cars recently installed a DMP Factory 500 on-site at its newly expanded factory and will produce the gearbox, along with hundreds of other bespoke parts, for the Rodin FZero.
“3D printing allows us to design and create components otherwise impossible to achieve using traditional manufacturing methods,” said David Dicker, founder of Rodin Cars. “With the Rodin FZERO gearbox, we had specific criteria to meet in terms of weight and durability. Due to the size and quality required for such a large component, it could only be printed on 3D Systems’ DMP Factory 500 machine. We couldn’t find another FA vendor capable of offering a similar solution for our needs: print quality, volume capacity, test facilities in Leuven, and ongoing technology support. “
In addition to 3D Systems’ DMP technology, Rodin Cars also uses the company’s Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) technology for part production and stereolithography (SLA) to produce tooling for carbon fiber forms.
“Additive manufacturing enables industry leaders to challenge limits and differentiate themselves,” said Kevin Baughey, transportation and powersports segment leader, 3D Systems. “As a high-tech, high-performance automobile manufacturer, Rodin Cars delivers unrivaled vehicles to its customers. This is a shining example of how additive manufacturing not only produces parts that could not be created by conventional methods, but it also provides a vehicle that is lighter, more durable and more beautiful. It’s the blend of the art of design with the science of hyper-performance cars and motorsports.
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About 3D systems
Over 30 years ago, 3D Systems brought innovation in 3D printing to the manufacturing industry. Today, as a leading additive manufacturing solutions partner, we bring innovation, performance and reliability to every interaction – enabling our customers to create products and business models never before possible. With our unique offering of hardware, software, materials and services, each application-specific solution is powered by the expertise of our application engineers who work with customers to transform the way they deliver their products. and services. 3D Systems solutions address a variety of advanced applications in healthcare and industrial markets such as medical and dental, aerospace and defense, automotive and durable goods. More information about the company is available at www.3dsystems.com.
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