STEP 3: RESEARCH & INVESTIGATE
1. The F1 Model Block - What is it?
All F1 in Schools cars will have the car bodies CNC machined by Yas in Schools with the body made from the official F1 Model block. All of the car body and the rear wings must be made from the Model Block material, and therefore designed to fit within the physical dimensions of the model block. You can easily check if your design fits within the block using Fusion 360. The Model Block is made from a polyurethane material that is very light and easy to machine with a good surface finishing.
The above illustration shows the F1 Model Block. The left side image is with the bottom surface facing up. The pre-drilled CO2 Canister Chamber hole can also be seen. The right side image shows the F1 Model Block right way up and again the CO2 Canister Chamber hole on the rear / back end of the block. The specific dimensions of the F1 Model block are shown on the illustration below:
Looking at the above model block sizes it can be seen that no car body can be wider than 65mm or taller than 50mm. Whilst the model block is 223mm long, the maximum length of an F1 in Schools car is actually limited to 210mm.
3. Car Design Rules
The F1 in Schools Al Dhafra Challenge uses the same car design rules as the F1 in Schools Test Driver Challenge. Following is a BASIC SUMMARY of the design rules for the Test Driver / Al Dhafra Challenge cars. The detailed design rules are explained in the Test Driver Challenge Technical and Competition Regulations document. Be sure to read and follow those as you are designing your car.
Download the full Car Design rules document here > F1iS-UAE-AL DHAFRA_Regs-2022 (1).pdf
Test Driver Design Rules Summary
- Car Body - The body of the car must consist only of the model block material and be designed around the Car Body Core included with the Test Driver Car Template. No material can be removed from the template car body core.
- Rear Wing - Cars must include a rear wing that is completely visible from the top view. The rear wing must be manufactured from the F1 model block material. The rear wing must be designed to comply with the various minimum dimensions mentioned in the Technical and Competition Regulations.
- CNC Machining Restrictions - The car body & rear wing will only be manufactured using CNC machining of both the left and right side of the car. This means that all surfaces of the car body and rear wing must be visible in the left and right side views.
- Front Wing - The front wing should be manufactured as a separate 3D printed part. The front wing must be designed to comply with the various minimum dimensions mentioned in the Technical and Competition Regulations.
- Wheels - Cars must use the standard F1 in Schools wheels. The vertical and horizontal position of the wheel center lines must remain unchanged from their position set in the Test Driver Car Template. The wheel 'track' can optionally be made narrower. For example: the Test Driver Car Template includes the axles at their maximum length. Designers may choose to shorten the axle length so that the wheels sit closer to the car body they designed.
- Car Weight - Cars when fully assembled and submitted for racing, must weigh a minimum of 55 grams. You can learn how to analyse the weight of your design in Tutorial 3 - Design Your Own Car
- Surface Finishing - Cars will not be painted.
2. The Test Driver Car Design Template
All Al Dhafra Challenge and Test Driver Challenge cars MUST be designed around the official Test Driver Car Template. The template is provided by Yas in Schools and can be downloaded to add into Fusion 360 as your starting point. The template download link can be found at STEP 4 - Design Your Own Car. The template assembly also includes the whole F1 Model block as a separate component so that you can check your design fits within the block dimensions.
The diagram below explains all features of the Test Driver Car Template assembly.
- Car Body Core - Shown in green above. When designing your own car, you can only add material to this body core shape. NO MATERIAL CAN BE REMOVED FROM THE TEMPLATE BODY CORE SHAPE. Typically designers would add material to the sides and top surface to form a more aerodynamic car body design. Note that the bottom surface of this Car body core is aligned to the bottom surface of the F1 Model block, so therefore, you can not add material to the bottom surface. The Car Body core includes the pre-machined and drilled tether line slot and CO2 Canister chamber hole.
- Wheels - The official F1 in Schools wheels are supplied by Yas in Schools are included as 3D models in the template assembly. All cars MUST USE these official wheels, you are not allowed to design and manufacture your own wheels. The position of the wheel center lines can not be changed and must remain located as provided in the template.
- Axles - The standard axles are provided along with the wheels and axle guide parts. The axles in the Test Driver Car Template are modeled at the maximum full standard length. You ARE ALLOWED to change the length of the axles ie. make them shorter so your wheel track becomes narrower if required.
- Axle Guides - These parts insert into the car body to provide a very efficient and low friction support for the axles. The hole which these axle guides insert into is drilled during the CNC machining process. Designers are allowed to make the body wider where the axle guides insert, but you are NOT ALLOWED to change their position by moving forward, rearward or in the vertical direction
- Tether Guides - The Test Driver Car Template assembly model includes two standard tether line guides. F1 in Schools cars are held to the race track via a thin nylon line that runs the length of each track lane. The tether line is passed through the tether guides to attach the car.
4. Example Test Driver Challenge Car Design
In the above example of a typical car you can see that and front wing has been designed for separate 3D printing and material has been added to the car body core in the following areas:
- Rear Wing - added to each side of the Co2 canister chamber hole area
- Sides - material added as side pod features to improve aerodynamics between front and rear wheels
- Top - material added forward of the Co2 canister chamber hole to improve aerodynamics
- Front Wing joint - a lip and step feature that mates with the front wing has been created to improve the joint strength when the wing is glued to the car body
- Front wing - designed as a separate part that will be 3D printed
5. Learn more about the CNC Manufacturing Process
All F1 in Schools Car Bodies are machined by Yas in Schools from the F1 Model Block. This is done using a 3 axis CNC Router. To get a better understanding of how 3 axis CNC machining works, visit the page linked below: