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Bicycle Seat Design

The Problem

When it comes to high-performance sports equipment, comfort and fit are almost as important as safety. Cyclists who compete at the highest levels need to be confident that their gear will perform safely under all conditions, even when they’re pushing themselves to the limit.

Our client wanted to create a comfortable, aerodynamic and robust bicycle seat designed especially for women – one that would that would help boost competition performance while also meeting all current industry safety standards.

Plaster Prototype

 

The Solution

To tackle this project, our engineers first worked with a clay model of the seat provided by our client. Most bike seats are designed for the male anatomy, but this prototype was instead shaped to fit the female form. For complex freeform structures like this, clay modelling offers the freedom and flexibility to adjust and reshape the prototype by hand until the ideal design is achieved.

3D scanning is the fastest and most efficient way to create bespoke ergonomic sports gear, so we used our cutting-edge Creaform GoScan 3D scanners to capture a precise high-resolution image of the prototype. 3D scanning allows us to digitize elaborate shapes for accurate and rapid conversion into CAD models. Then we reverse engineered the raw scan data, remodelling it into a smooth and symmetrical form as shown below.And finally we 3D printed the reverse-engineered model so that our client could arrange for the seat to be tested for comfort and performance by a panel of female cyclists.

 

Raw Scan Data

New Model based on scan data

The Result

Using our advanced scanning equipment, Absolute 3D created a safe, high-performance bicycle seat.

After testing, if the seat proves comfortable and effective then our client can prepare for mass production. Alternatively, he may require alterations to further tailor the seat to better suit the average female athlete’s comfort and fit requirements. Often it takes several iterations to reach the perfect design.

Compared to traditional methods, our approach is significantly more efficient, while substantially reducing the product design lifecycle and costs. So far, our client has been thrilled with the results.

3D Printed prototype