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February 5, 2023

3D–printed billy cart to enter Bangalow derby

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Steve with his 3D printed entry for the 2016 Bangalow Billy Cart Derby. Photo contributed
Steve with his 3D printed entry for the 2016 Bangalow Billy Cart Derby. Photo contributed

We’re used to seeing all shapes, sizes and constructions of billy cart rolling down the Byron Street hill in Bangalow’s annual Billy Cart Derby. But here’s one entry that’s likely to win a prize before the starter’s gun sounds.

Pocket resident Steve Rosewell has come up with the ingenious idea of 3D printing his competition entry.

Steve’s used to a challenge: his Studio Kite produces all kids of fascinating stuff, including movie sets, sculptures, medical models and now a range of 3D printed objects.

Steve says he sees a huge future in 3D printing, not least because of the minimal waste involved.

His slick, atomic-age billy cart has been printed by his robot using recycled ABS non-toxic plastic waste

ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene) is derived from items such as car dashboards and doors, lego blocks, whitegoods parts and electrical appliance casings… an abundant resource.

‘As a prop maker my dumpster was always overflowing with polystyrenes, resins and other horrid rubbish.

3D printing is an additive manufacturing process; you only add what you need, so there is no waste.

And any mistakes can be chipped and used again.

After planning, trialling and finishing, his cart took a comparatively short print time.

What the cart will look like when complete.
What the cart will look like when complete.

Printed in several parts and then assembled, it is reminiscent of 60s cartoon characters’ amazing vehicles like the Batmobile or George Jetson’s little runabout.

Steve calls it a Bukitty, ‘like Bugatti with a kite in it!’

He says he is entering the car in the derby as a way of proving his robot’s capabilities, and promoting 3D printing, but also for the fun of being involved in a local community event.

He also loves the idea that kids may be inspired and that people can learn how waste materials can be transformed.

‘At the moment most of the usable (chipped) recycled ABS material comes from overseas, there are not as many local suppliers,’ Steve says.

Unlike metals, plastics are quite labour intensive to recycle and Steve says he would love to see more usable plastics recycled by councils.

The Bangalow Billy Cart Derby is on Sunday May 15.

More details and entry forms at the Billy Cart Derby website.

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