Young designer finds passion and a future, racing with Geomagic Design.
Nicolai Hansen may only be 20 years old, but he's taking his dreams to the next level by driving his own racecar and designing his way to a better future. Nic is in the middle of his university level of education in Denmark, where he is becoming a Precision Engineer. His love for design techniques and attention to detail led him to study engineering, but his real passion is Moto-sport. His interest in racing began over a decade ago when he began driving Go-Karts at the age of 9. During the next 5 years the hobby of racing these souped-up go karts turned into a lifestyle. As he advanced through the racing system and gained wisdom and experience, the driving became more serious and his knowledge and interest in optimizing his own hand-built engines grew. When he was sixteen he found Geomagic Design and began using it to create brackets, tables and other parts he needed for racing.
At the end of his secondary education it was time for Nicolai to choose his area of study for the future. He found that the search for engineering perfection coupled with handcrafting and design made Precision Engineering the perfect choice for his studies. During that time he perfected his race designs and manufactured them using Geomagic Design.
During his second semester in the fall of 2011, each student had to choose their own project and manufacture it. Nicolai chose to make a 23cc 2-stroke internal combustion racing engine. It was a huge amount of work for the teenager, while relying on his skills from the past and knowledge of 2-stroke engines he began to study and read everything he could about engine design.
He set out and began to sketch his parts from his new racer in Geomagic Design. It was right about this time when he met Bent Løkke, the a Reseller in Denmark and owner of NettoCAD. Bent took an immediate interest in the project. Design and manufacturing of the engine began with the help of Mr. Løkke who sponsored Nicolai with a license of Geomagic Design to boost his designing and manufacturing.
In the end he triumphed. Nicolai says, "It was a huge satisfaction to see such a big project become real. I think it's amazing, that you can design and build such complex things, using a program that ordinary people actually can afford."
Phase II - The Porsche
While working on the engine project, Nicolai's father (who has been his enthusiastic and faithful mechanic during all the years of racing) decided that together they would move from go-kart and into car racing for the 2012 Season. The father and son team bought and ordinary street car, a Porsche 968, that they imported from Germany and their new project was born.
During the 2011-2012 winter the team was busy, within the time frame of 6 months they stripped the car and then redesigned, refurbished and reassembled the new racecar. Nicolai welded in a roll cage and the car was power sanded down to the frame and re-painted. A new suspension was added and wheel assembly and engine mounts were redesigned. The pair used Geomagic Design to design all the parts for the Racer - this is a short list:
- Camber/castor adjustment plates
- Front and rear sway bar bushings
- Solid engine mounts
- Stiffer gearbox mounts
- Wheel spacers
- A control box for steering wheel mounting
- Various speciality tools
- Suspension mounts and brackets.
In this period the pair practically lived in the garage working hard to finish in time for Nicolai's first big race on May 5th & 6th 2012. The day before the race they added sponsor decals from NettoCAD as the final touches for the car.
During the race they did experience some fuel problems, which were finally solved before the last heat, in which he managed to advance from 17th position of 24 to 4th place, with driving times equal to the front of the pack. Even though they had problems during the weekend, everyone agreed this was a huge success for a first race. Other racers were so impressed with the custom made parts that they made, they even got their first request to create another race car...
Check out the 2012 race on YouTube.