RC Race Car

2.810: Manufacturing Processes and Systems

Sep 2019 - Dec 2019

SolidWorks, Waterjet, Milling, Injection Molding, Thermoforming

What better way to test your engineering skills than to compete in an obstacle course with a custom-built race car? Throughout the course of a semester, along with 5 teammates, I went from concept, prototyping, testing and finally to manufacturing 6 competition ready RC race car.

Given the unpredictable nature of the competition, simplicity was prioritized above anything else. I took responsibility in the design of the thermoformed shell, the chassis, and the suspension assembly. The chassis features front and rear bumpers to protect against collisions, and the suspension provides relief over the speed bumps to reduce vibrations. The motor, battery, and other subassemblies were also designed to be easily mounted with only water-jetted parts for ease of assembly.

Unfortunately, with all the foresight we had, we still missed a critical component. Come game day, we took a commanding lead, only to face a brutal collision that dislodged our steering mechanism. We dragged along the walls of the race track to the finishing line.

 

Through our bitter defeat, we learned the importance of identifying critical modes of failure and building redundancies. Having fewer components reduces complexity, but at the same time makes each component more critical.

Mechanical Engineer

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