Fast Drive – F1 Car Made From 250 Hard Drives

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When you have a passion for building and creating, you will see something amazing in almost everything.  When you have a passion for race cars, you will try to assemble anything and everything to look like one.  We are talking about the most famous race car, the Formula One.

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Rob Ryan, the technologist, Advanced Concept Team came up with the WD F1 car, which he made using 250 Western Digital hard disk drives that he had access to.  It is hard to believe when you look at this masterpiece that it is a carefully crafted model car which is a result of parts taken from hundreds of HDD.

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The front wheel hubs are from 10,000 RPM drive motors and the rear hubs are from 7200 RPM 4D motors.  The hubs were CNC milled down in order for them to work.  The wheels and tires were made from a High-Performance Acetal Resin by Dupont called Delrin.  The WD F1 car looks like a real RC car and is compromised of 5 spindle motors and two Voice Coil Motors (VCM) from WD hard drives that are all still functional.

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The swooping body sides are the anti-disks from WD Red hard drives.  The race car drivers  head is a four disk motor populated with disk spacers.  The V-12 engine hood scoops above the drivers head.  Rob Ryan used 12 matching WD Scorpio notebook drive actuators to make the motor.  The brass tube that holds the motor together with torx screws was cut, tapped and flattened for it to work.

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The F1 car’s suspension is made from WD black 4 Disk actuators.  Special standoff were handmade to hold the magnet plates firmly.  The rear wing is made from WD Velociraptor actuators and held up with Scorpio actuators.  The rear diffuser is a stack of VCM magnets and steel from Velociraptor drives.  Rear suspension is held down with Scorpio disk clamps and supported by machined aluminum bosses screwed to the base plate.

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The LED lights and driver’s head motor are controlled by a Pololu Baby Orangutan robot controller.  Rob Ryan wasn’t done there, he wrote custom code in C to bring the creation to life, so there are different lighting modes and the drivers head can spin at different speeds and reverse direction.  Get inspired and put your spare time to good use.