Ford releases open-source CAD recordsdata for 3D printing truck equipment


Automobile producer Ford has formally launched a set of CAD recordsdata enabling prospects to 3D print their very own equipment for his or her Maverick pickup truck. 

The recordsdata are for the pickup’s Ford Built-in Tether System (FITS) which is a collection of slots on the rear of the middle console and the under-seat storage bins that may be custom-made with all kinds of equipment, akin to cup holders and cellphone mounts. 

Ford had introduced its intention to launch the recordsdata since earlier than the Maverick entered manufacturing, and now that the truck has began hitting driveways the automotive producer has made good on its promise.

The Ford Maverick Pickup. Photo via Ford.
The Ford Maverick Pickup. Photograph by way of Ford.

Customizing your pickup

Whereas ford presents a variety of its personal FITS-compatible equipment to Maverick prospects, the corporate is encouraging homeowners to 3D print their very own custom-made additions to suit their way of life. The agency has made out there CAD recordsdata for the system’s heart console and under-seat cupboard space that prospects can use as a foundation to design and print their very own equipment, or leverage a 3D printing service supplier to print their equipment for them.

Within the few months because the Maverick’s launch and the CAD recordsdata turning into out there, the open-source 3D printing group has wasted no time in designing its personal FITS-compatible equipment by means of different means. 

Digital 3D mannequin repository Thingiverse has seen quite a few accent designs uploaded that prospects can obtain and print for themselves, together with cup holders, purchasing bag hooks, cellphone holders, and extra. Creators have additionally designed FITS slots for different areas of the Maverick, akin to throughout the pickup’s dashboard cubby, alongside an inverted FITS tether which may flip any car right into a FITS-compatible one, even when it’s not a Ford.

With the discharge of the official CAD recordsdata, prospects can be extra simply capable of design and print their very own equipment for his or her vans, with Ford encouraging individuals to “put their creativeness to work.” Maverick prospects can obtain the CAD recordsdata from Ford’s web site right here.

Ford is encouraging customers to 3D print their own FITS-compatible accessories. Image via Ford.
Ford is encouraging prospects to 3D print their very own FITS-compatible equipment. Picture by way of Ford.

Ford and 3D printing

Along with selling 3D printing as a method for purchasers to customise their autos, Ford can also be leveraging the know-how in different areas, too. The producer’s personal Superior Manufacturing Middle options plenty of 3D printer OEM HP’s Multi Jet Fusion (MJF) 3D printers which have been used to manufacture elements for a few of Ford’s automotive fashions, such because the Ford Shelby Mustang GT500.

In reality, the corporate regards itself as one of many earliest adopters of additive manufacturing, having bought the “third stereolithography machine ever made” again in 1988, and producing lots of of 1000’s of 3D printed elements yearly. The corporate has additionally partnered with the likes of 3D printer producers Carbon and Stratasys.

Most just lately, Ford teamed up with HP to recycle 3D printing waste into end-use automotive elements in what’s believed to be an business first. By the partnership, recycled 3D printing materials can be transformed into injection-molded fuel-line clips to be used on Ford’s Tremendous Responsibility F-250 vans so as to enhance the sustainability credentials of the agency’s manufacturing operations. 

An open-source 3D printed FITS-compatible phone holder designed by thepete2112. Photo via Thingiverse.
An open-source 3D printed FITS-compatible cellphone holder designed by thepete2112. Photograph by way of Thingiverse.

Open-source equipment

Through the years, the open-source 3D printing group has made out there numerous designs and recordsdata for 3D printable equipment, attachments, and adaptors for the merchandise of well-known manufacturers and producers.

Latest examples of such designs embody YouTuber Akaki Kuumeri’s 3D printed adapter for the Sony PS5 DualSense controller which permits customers to play video games one-handed, and hobbyist toymaker Riskable’s modern levitating key swap mechanism for PC keyboards which supplies a extra tactile response for customers. One other notable instance is YouTuber Lucas VRTech’s open-source 3D printable digital actuality (VR) gloves which will be printed for simply $22.

Main companies are beginning to acknowledge the worth of open-source 3D printing too, with World Japanese electronics agency Panasonic just lately making greater than 75,000 CAD recordsdata for its digital elements freely out there to prospects. 

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Featured picture reveals the Ford Maverick Pickup. Photograph by way of Ford.


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