Physicist Sterling Backus wanted to work on a car with his kid, but this project is a little more unique than that Celica in the garage.
For the past 18 months, Backus and his 11-year-old son have been building a 3D-printed, full-scale Lamborghini Aventador SVJ. According to Backus, he just wanted to show kids that science, technology and engineering are cool.
The project has been a financial commitment. The pair has racked up about $20,000 in expenses, but that is still much cheaper than the $639,670 price tag of the official counterpart.
The frame, suspension and drivetrain are steel (the father wants it to be safe), but other than that, the body panels, tail lights and other components have all been 3D printed in plastic and some encapsulated in carbon fiber.
According to a recent interview, the father found a 1/10th scale model online and blew it up to full size using the wheel width as a reference point. The team used Solidworks to make the 3D models printable, and while the team does have some mistakes on the scrap heap, the project is coming along well.
According to designboom, Sterling believes that they have made enough alterations to the design to stay clear of any legal troubles. For example, they made it 4” wider to make it more of a wide-body version. Sterling also uploaded the files to GrabCAD.com so anyone could piece together their own Lamborghini.
The car isn’t running yet, but the plan is to have it on the road by October and making the rounds to local schools by next spring.
This wasn’t the pair’s first rodeo, they previously worked together on a ‘69 Mustang. The father was skeptical at first, but he figured he’d give it a shot. After all, he says, “that’s how science works, we just try really crazy stuff, and sometimes it works.”