While 2D renderings can help to communicate a product concept well enough, there is something to be said about seeing a concept as a physical, three-dimensional object. This marketing reality has not been lost on manufacturers and designers, who are increasingly turning to additive manufacturing to tactilely visualize design and product concepts.
Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus, a boutique manufacturer of high-performance racing and road cars, recently partnered with Aerosport Modeling & Design to 3D print a small-scale model of its 2019 SCG 004S supercar—a planned luxury vehicle that has not yet gone into production. The 3D printed model of the car was presented in the manufacturer’s showroom to promote the new line of vehicles.
“When we got the call on this project, I thought about how cool it would be to produce the entire model with only our in-house 3D printing capabilities,” commented Geoff Combs, the owner of Aerosport Modeling & Design, a company specializing in the production of high quality prototypes and show models.
Indeed, the company utilized a range of 3D printing technologies to bring the one-fifth scale car model to life, including its RSPro 600 from UnionTech and HP’s Multi Jet Fusion technology.
“We knew it was very possible for us to do now because of our recent investments new 3D printing technology,” Combs elaborated. “In 2017, we had purchased new stereolithography 3D printer from UnionTech, the RSPro 600, with a large build platform of 600 mm x 600 mm x 500 mm (23.6” x 23.6” x 19.6”). Around the same time, we also added HP’s Multi Jet Fusion technology to support other customers’ 3D print production needs.”
The vehicle’s body panels, chassis and tires were all 3D printed out of PA12 using HP’s technology. Notably, all these parts were strategically split into various smaller components so that the printer’s build space was maximized. For instance, the hood design was split into two, while the chassis was separated into four pieces and the rest of the parts were printed in 12 pieces.
The vehicle’s window sections, wheels and brake rotors were printed on the UnionTech 3D printer using Somos EvoLVe 128, a highly durable photopolymer suitable for printing fine details. All these parts were finished and painted. Other high feature finish pieces, including mirror headlight housings, exhaust tips and headlight taillight lenses were printed using an unspecified SLA machine and various Somos materials.
By using its in-house 3D printing technology, Aerosport Modeling & Design says it was able to print the vehicle model within just five weeks. The whole project, from first concept conversation to the final model’s delivery to Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus, reportedly took three months.
Measuring 36 inches in length and 15 inches in width, the 3D printed supercar model is a sight to behold. Understandably, the presentation of the 3D printed vehicle by Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus at its showroom had just the effect the company hoped for as it garnered excitement and interest from prospective buyers.
Presently, Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus is preparing to begin the production of full-scale prototypes for the SCG 004S supercar in 2019. By 2020, the company plans to be producing about 250 cars per year. This production could take place at a production facility in Connecticut that the company has hinted at buying. At this stage, the car manufacturer says it is already accepting deposits for the new vehicle model.