This unusual specimen – a headlight/fairing/dash bracket from those madmen over at Bottpower – crossed my Instagram feed:
And here’s a render of it with the screen and headlights in place:
These guys are using some high-end computer-aided engineering – in this case, something called “topological optimization”, which is effectively using some heavy maths and computing power to automatically optimise the shape of a component based on certain constraints you set.
A part like this bracket really can’t be manufactured any way other than 3D printing – and Bottpower suggest they’ll print this one in titanium – so its not a technique you’ll likely use on the one-off custom bike you’re building at home.
But, it is interesting none-the-less to see what is possible. These tools will get cheaper and more user friendly over time (assuming you can drive the tools properly, because “garbage in = garbage out”).
At some point I figured I would create a basic CAD (computer aided design) course as CNC machining is much more accessible now for making your custom parts.If you want to learn more about the tech and engineering such as this, drop in a comment below to let me know – if there is interest I will write more about it.