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FabCafe Mini 4WD Cup: Team Honda took the 3D Printed trophy

Debamoy Ghosh

The Japanese engineering spirit is great. Around 60 mini 4WD fans including children and professional car designers assembled Kashiwanoha KOIL to race their miniature cars customized by 3D printers and laser cutters. Three tournaments have been organized and then trophies were distributed.

Mini 4WD to Drive

Japanese Maker Community Mini 4WD (4-wheel-drive) or Mini Yonku has been a well-liked hobby, especially among Japanese children, since the 1980s. These battery-powered plastic tiny race cars are a lot like slot cars, But they run on the track without a remote control. Mini 4WD racers typically customize their cars by adjusting the motors, bumpers, tires and wheels to make them run more rapidly.

Mini 4WD for every person

Partakers in the mini 4WD race were sorted out into three classes depending on the level of customization. While starters joined a practicum to customize their car bodies before the race, but some others with more design experience had already 3D Printed their cars using 3D Printers and laser cutters. There were also some modern professional designers. Here are two pieces created by professional industrial designers Mitsuki Nishikawa and Jungsam Park. Mitsuki’s KIRIE depicts the beauty of Japanese paper art (kirie literally means paper cut-out in Japanese).

FabCafe Mini 4WD Cup: Team Honda took the 3D Printed trophy

Ovation for Japanese Engineers

The participants have to get it in their mind that if the car goes extremely fast, off the track and fail to negotiate the ongoing movements than it could be disqualified. These 3D Printed bumpers placed in the middle of the route made the race spectacular by kicking the fastest cars out of the track. It had a built-in meter to calculate the number of motor revolving and limit the car’s speed when turning a curve.

The Honda team won the 3D printed trophy. The tournament ended in evening. The audience reacted with a loud cheer when one of the Honda Team’s laser-cut mini 4WDs crossed the finish line to be the final champion.

The next round of the FabCafe Mini 4WD Cup has been scheduled to be held in March 2015. If you are a mini 4WD lover in Japan, you can test-run your vehicle at FabCafe Shibuya, utilize their 3D Printers or even ask them to check your 3D models. We are looking forward to seeing even more unique 4WD cars next time.

FabCafe Mini 4WD Cup: Team Honda took the 3D Printed trophy
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