While many people get used to drive automatics they forget how to drive with a manual transmssion. However Ford engineer wants to make a manual transmission a bit easier to adjust to, with a new 3D printed shift knob that tells you when to shift based on haptic feedback.
Ford Engineer Zachary Nelson uses a haptic vibration motor from a Microsoft Xbox 360 game controller to create an OpenXC shift knob that vibrates when a driver shifts gears in a Ford Mustang. The motor is then stuffed into a custom shift knob he printed on a MakerBot Thing-O-Matic so whenever the driver should shift the shift knob will vibrate.
He also installed an Arduino controller and connected an Android tablet with a mini-USB port and a Bluetooth receiver. When fully assembled, the 3D-printed shift knob uses Ford's OpenXC research platform to link devices to the car via Bluetooth, and shares vehicle data from the on-board diagnostics port. Zach tests his prototype in a Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 that vibrates at the optimal time to change gears. According to Wired, he can also program the knob to vibrate as the engine approaches redline or its most efficient shift point (to save the most fuel).
While this idea might not be useful for a lot of us, with 3D printing it is possible for people to try to make more custom parts for their cars. As car makers release some of designs of products and allow the community to further develop them, we also expect a booming business in custom car parts designs.
Watch the video below:
Posted in 3D Printing Applications
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yy wrote at 7/27/2013 9:28:31 PM: