Consumer 3D PrintingDesignDfAM

Designer conceives Continuous Loop Bicycle frame with 3D printing in mind

AM opens up possibilities for an entirely new "without-end" approach

The idea of DfAM (Design for Additive Manufacturing) explores how parts can be designed specifically to leverage the expanded geometric possibilities afforded by additive manufacturing technologies. Until now this approach – implemented primarily by forward-thinking engineers – has focused on lattices and trabecular structures to reduce a part’s weight. However, this may be just a scratch on the proverbial surface as many other possibilities exist to exploit mold-less production. For example, the creation of “without-end” designs to replace complex multi-part assemblies. This is exactly what designer Steve Jenkins did in the Continuous Loop Bicycle project recently published on the Yanko Design network.

Continuous Loop Bicycle

The never-ending loop that makes up the bicycle frame is about as lateral thinking as it gets as it breaks from traditional style and manufacturing. It is conceived to utilize 3D printing technology to be manufactured in a single piece, resulting in an unusual shape that is somewhat remindful of a tied up balloon animal figure.

Entirely new design approaches are sometimes strange to see and this is no different. Unlike engineers, designers can explore these without focusing solely on functionality. However the idea of producing complex parts as single objects is a key element in advancing additive manufacturing. If that is the case, the Continuous Loop Bicycle may go a long way.

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Davide Sher

Since 2002, Davide has built up extensive experience as both a technology journalist and communications consultant. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he received his undergraduate degree. Specializing in covering the AM industry, he founded London-based 3D Printing Business Media Ltd. (now 3dpbm) which operates in marketing, editorial and market analysys&consultancy services for the additive manufacturing industry. 3dpbm publishes 3D Printing Business Directory, the largest global directory of companies related to 3DP, as well as several editorial websites, including 3D Printing Media Network and Replicatore. Since 2016 he is also a Senior Analyst for leading US-based firm SmarTech Analysis focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets.

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