Jan 12, 2017 | By Benedict

Polish 3D printer manufacturer Zortrax has created a 3D printed motorcycle to demonstrate the power of its warp-resistant materials. The middleweight-class 3D printed bike was printed on Zortrax M200 and M300 3D printers.

When deciding how best to demonstrate the power of Z-HIPS, Z-GLASS, and Z-ULTRAT, three warp-resistant 3D printing materials, staff at Polish 3D printing company Zortrax didn’t have to think twice. With a design team full of motorcycle enthusiasts, it was hardly a surprise that somebody suggested taking a middleweight-class motorcycle, tearing it down, and building it back up with 3D printed components. According to Piotr Czyzewski, who designed the 3D printed motorcycle, “The inspiration was simple: to pay homage to motorcycles and motorsports.”

Zortrax, in designing its 3D printed motorbike, wanted to present a real-world example of how 3D printing can be used for prototyping, even in the creation of a robust industrial machine. As such, the Polish 3D printing company wasn’t only attempting to customize a 3D printed motorcycle, but also wanted to demonstrate the scope of redesigning machinery using additive manufacturing equipment. From the look of the additive two-wheeler, we’d say they succeeded.

The 3D printed motorcycle is based on a typical middleweight-class bike, and was actually made using a real, non-printed motorcycle. The first stage of the project was to disassemble this motorcycle, after which Zortrax staff were able to 3D scan each individual component that could later be recreated on a 3D printer. All plastic parts of the bike were 3D printed, including all fairings, tank casing, seat, windshield, lights, and mirrors.

When 3D printing the plastic parts, three Zortrax filaments were used: Z-HIPS, a filament that significantly reduces warping and visibly shortens the time spent on post-processing, for the fairings and tank casing; Z-GLASS, which has the ability to make an exact replica of any item, even translucent structures, for the lights; and Z-ULTRAT a strong, stable, and time-resistant material, used for binding elements.

Once all the plastic motorcycle parts had been 3D printed, the Zortrax team then had to deal with post-processing, which involved smoothing down, undercoating, grinding, and painting each part. Overall, the scanning, printing, and post-processing took around one month. The result is a full-sized, fully functional 3D printed motorcycle that is ready to fly like a bat out of a 3D printer. While the prototype is not fit for use on the streets, the success of the project shows how 3D printing can be used as a prototyping tool in the automotive industry.

“At every stage we faced different challenges,” said Michal Mosiej, Plastic Processing Specialist at Zortrax. “The first was selecting a base model that our projected prototype would fit. Then there was the complex 3D scanning process, which required a tremendous amount of technical detail to ensure we maintained the same dimensions as our scanned model. The most exciting part was the designing process and the assembly, keeping in mind that all our parts [had to] fit perfectly.”



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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underdowny wrote at 1/12/2017 7:57:05 PM:

printed on M600... eh?

Nowheelspin wrote at 1/12/2017 7:34:43 PM:

The entire machine was 3D-printed, Or just the fairing?

Olivier Mari wrote at 1/12/2017 4:44:55 PM:

They are not the first to do this, I went to the same process last year, all fairing parts printed with a stratasys printer, here's the bike https://www.facebook.com/DesmoDesign/photos/a.920617291321912.1073741826.508217415895237/1390007037716266/?type=3&theater

Don Dangling wrote at 1/12/2017 4:21:42 PM:

Come on Guy's BOGUS TITLE This site is really going down hill faster than this bike. They only printed the fairings. Lucky the Oz police didn't arrest you for promoting a lethal weapon.

gerda wrote at 1/12/2017 2:26:07 PM:

Come on: "3D prints functional motorcycle". Even a child can see that there are a lot of non 3d printed parts on the bike.

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