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The challenge

A new cycle in bike manufacturing

Perth-based bicycle company, Flying Machine, create bespoke bikes that are enjoyable to ride and and visually stunning.

A man examines a bike that contains parts printed on CSIRO's 3D Titanium printer

The company had been importing certain parts for their bikes for some time. This was proving to be not only expensive but it also meant that their product was not entirely Australian made.

They had been interested in 3D printing technology to improve the manufacturing of their bike parts and make them more customised for some time. Until they discovered our Melbourne printing facility, they were unsure of just who to turn to in order to make it happen.

Our response

Teaming with experts to create the next generation bike

We partnered with the company to help them prototype and print new and completely customised parts out of titanium at our Melbourne additive manufacturing facility Lab 22. The parts included the bike's lugs, which are the small metallic components that join the tubular frame of the bike.

After receiving the files for print, it took under 10 days to produce and ship, compared to 10 weeks for more conventional parts.

The bike's 3D printed parts make for 'infinite flexibility' and generally give riders a better cycling experience.

Delivery day: 3D printed bike

[Music plays and text appears: Delivery day: 3D printed bike]

[Image changes to show Sam Froud, Designer wheeling a bike to front of his studio doors]

Sam Froud: Hi, my name’s Sam Froud. This is my studio here in North Melbourne, and this is the bike that I designed for Flying Machine. It’s a 3D printed titanium frame with a carbon belt drive.

[Image changes to show inside the studio and the camera pans the length of a wall where lots of bikes are hanging]

I’ve been eagerly awaiting the delivery man to come and deliver my bike finally. I’ve been working on this thing for over a year, and I haven’t yet seen a part, so to get it, and finally touch it, and hold you know the fruits of my creation, is just amazing.

[Image changes to show Sam closely inspecting his bike]

From completely designing it on the computer, to having something that you can pick up and ride is just incredible. Like, you can’t... you can’t even talk about it (chuckles).

[Image changes to show Sam test riding his bike]

This is the first day that I’ve had the bike, so I’ve just been so stoked to be able to get on it finally and go for a ride. I actually went to ride around the block, and then ended up riding right down into the city and back. It’s like the titanium’s just completely blown my mind about how it was going to be.

[Image changes to show a CSIRO Australia sign]

Well CSIRO are the only titanium printer in the southern hemisphere, so for us it not only was cheaper getting it here in Australia than from overseas, but it was also quicker in its turnaround time.

[Image change to show the process of making a prototype]

So CSIRO offered us a prototype production cost which enabled us to test and trial the pieces before we were really committed into making it into a production piece, which was very fundamental in terms of doing something like this, because it’s never been done before.

[Music plays, CSIRO logo appears with text: Big ideas start here ]

Today we joined designer Sam Froud at his studio to chat about the highly anticipated delivery of his new bike. But it's not just any bike that has had Sam eagerly waiting the postman; it's one of the first ever 3D printed bikes -- with parts manufactured by our 3D printing experts.

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The results

The finished product

This project means that anyone can own their own 3D printed bicycle, made to fit their exact measurements and riding style. The new bike provides a far better bike riding experience for customers.

What's also really exciting is that the lugs are produced in Melbourne and the frame building is done in the team's Perth studio, making these Flying Machines truly Australian made.

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