Jonathan Brand’s 1972 Honda CB500 might not be roadworthy, but with the proliferation of home 3D printers and materials you can use with them, who’s to say how far out we are from that dream?
Brand, a New York-based artist, worked with an Ultimaker 3D printer to create his own dream motorcycle. The result is a life-size replica of the Honda CB500, printed piece by piece using PLA plastic and a home Ultimaker 3D printer. The whole thing required 18 kg of plastic to create, with individual pieces taking anywhere from a few hours to an entire day to print. There’s good reason why some of those pieces were so complex, too—while no one will be firing this CB500 up anytime soon, the motorcycle can turn and be rolled across the floor.
Want to get started on your own? If you’re handy with CAD programs, stay tuned. Brand and Ultimaker will be at the 3D Printshow in New York on April 15, where they’ll show off the motorcycle and Cura 3D, Ultimaker’s new open source 3D printing software. You can try your hand at your own ultra-light, ultra-thin transparent motorcycle while you dream of the day you can start printing a real one&mdash.
In all seriousness, it’s not a ridiculous notion. Industrial-strength 3D printers can use various kinds of metals as a printing medium. And hey, if printing software is already sophisticated enough to start printing body parts, you have to figure actual motorcycle parts aren’t that big of a deal. It’s probably already possible, or at least very nearly possible, to 3D print a roadworthy motorcycle as it is—unfortunately, with the cash it would take to get all the hardware needed, well, let’s just say you could probably afford to a few motorcycles off the lot.