Local Motors Takes First Test Drive of Their 3D Printed Car

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There are so many amazing projects going on in the 3D printing space, that it’s so easy to lose track. One project, which has me local1extremely excited, is one being worked on by a company called Local Motors. The company, based out of Phoenix, AZ plans to 3D print a car, live at the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) in Chicago, on September 8-13th. Certainly this won’t be an easy task, as one little problem could turn out to be a catastrophe while trying to get the entire car printed within the six day window of the show.

This is why the company has been working diligently to make sure they are ready for the big day, which is less than three months away. To prepare themselves for the IMTS, they decided to 3D print a test mule of the production version of the car which will be printed in September.

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If I had slightly questioned the seven-year-old company’s ability to meet the stringent six day timeline before, after seeing their work in the last week, I have little doubt that with the talent they have, they will be able to achieve their vision. Just two days ago the main 3D printed frame of the test vehicle was completed, and yesterday Local Motors was able to take the vehicle for its first spin. James Earle, a member of the Local Motors staff, since December of last year, was the lucky one to get to take the 3D printed vehicle for its first official drive. Earle explained that they wanted to print out a test mule, in order to make sure the drive train functioned properly, and all the connections were correct, prior to getting to the IMTS in September. Check out the video below to see how the first ride went:

It will certainly be interesting to follow this company, not only over the next three months leading up to the big live 3D printing event, but also after that event to see how they continue to incorporate 3D printing into their production methods. It’s quite easy to follow their progress, as they provide frequent update via their blog. Let us know what you think about this company’s quest to 3D print a car within a six day timeframe in the Local motors forum thread at 3DPB.com.

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