June 14, 2012

Construction of CR08 ahead of FSUK 2012 at Silverstone in mid July. Here is a mock up of the completed steering wheel of which I posted some renders of previously.

This 15mm thick 7075-T6 plate holds the entire rear suspension and engine in place, and the entire assembly can be removed with just 8 bolts.


CR08 Steering Wheel

March 15, 2012

For the past few months University work has pretty much taken up most of my life. I’ve been pretty busy designing some of Cardiff’s new Formula Student car and this steering wheel is one of the new parts. The previous wheel was a simple formula-type wheel, but with the need to house a new dashboard and electronic shifter buttons, I decided to design my own wheel to package all the parts.

The steering wheel will be manufactured using Selective Laser Sintering (rapid-prototyping) in DuraForm Polyamide. Pretty much any shape can be printed in 3D and the material is surprisingly rigid and strong. The final plastic body will weigh roughly 400g.
Here are some renders:

This is the Race-Technology DASH2 that had to be incorporated into the steering wheel.

Due to the very limited space, the buttons had to be mounted quite high up to clear the dash at the front. Paddles were added to press the buttons at a lower position; the carbon panel just tidies up the wiring.

FS UK 2011 Silverstone

July 23, 2011

Last weekend was the UK Formula Student event held at Silverstone. Like last year we were blessed with the most temperamental weather England had to offer, it ranged from chucking-it-down to sunny summer at least 3 times a day. A staggering 92 entries competed in the event from over 30 different countries. The quality and technology in some of the single seater racers blows me away every year.
Not having completed the Endurance stage last year, for 4 years infact, our main goal was to finish it and obviously do the same in every over event. On the soaking Saturday morning we completed the Acceleration and Skid-pan events with times in the top half of the ranking. In the afternoon the weather began clearing up and I would be driving the Sprint event on the course setup along the old main straight of Silverstone. Usual racing drama ensued with teams watching the skies very closely to ensure they would complete a run in the dry, we got out early and after a few delays I set a 10th place time.

On my first runs I encountered a yellow flag as one of the preceding cars had a problem. To keep things fair you’re granted a re-run. The first lap of the video was my quickest, luckily no cones were hit as they would incur a 2 second penalty. On the last run the nightmare happened, I broke a second wheel center after braking in the hairpin complex. We broke our first wheel center the day before during the brake test for scrutineering, all the spokes snapped in one big swoop.
At this point we weren’t quite sure what was happening, these wheels had endured a few years of use with no hint of trouble and then we broke two in a weekend. 7075 Ali is aircraft grade so technically shouldn’t be subject to much degradation, but all the fractures were brittle.
With the main goal being finishing the Endurance race, driving at a competitive pace would have likely caused another center to give way, so we decided to nurse the car home finishing 19th. The one benefit was low fuel consumption giving an 8th place finish in fuel economy.

July 13, 2011

Endurance Testing at Llandow Kart track.

July 12, 2011

We were given the amazing opportunity to test our car in the Millenium Stadium, Cardiff. Standing in the middle of the normally grassed field with the sound of the Aprilia 550 bouncing off the stands is nothing short of awesome.

June 15, 2011

#6 Further improvement: Vinyl wrap.

New front suspension setup this year. Lighter rockers and lighter mountain bike derived coilovers.

June 10, 2011

#5 Looking like a car.