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3D printing has gone from being a crazy phenomenon to a regular part of life in many industries. Now, the McLaren-Honda F1 team has announced that it will be taking a 3D printer to all its races.
In a cool touch, the company confirmed that it will be able to print a variety of parts at trackside, courtesy of 3D printing specialists Stratasys, allowing them to quickly and easily produce spares and all-new designs.
Parts fabricated with the printer include hydraulic line brackets, radio cables, brake cooling ducts and rear wing flaps.
“We are consistently modifying and improving our Formula 1 car designs, so the ability to test new designs quickly is critical to making the car lighter and more importantly increasing the number of tangible iterations in improved car performance. If we can bring new developments to the car one race earlier — going from new idea to new part in only a few days — this will be a key factor in making the McLaren MCL32 more competitive,” said Neil Oatley, Design and Development Director of McLaren Racing Limited.
“By expanding the use of Stratasys 3D printing in our manufacturing processes, including producing final car components, composite lay-up and sacrificial tools, cutting jigs, and more, we are decreasing our lead times while increasing part complexity.”
According to Engadget, the printer will be taken to the track as of this weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix.
Now, about printing spare Honda engine parts…
Featured image: McLaren F1 website