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Model car race marks finish line for 3D printing project

Dozens of pupils from eight Carmarthenshire schools will soon be taking part in a 3D printed model car race.

Participating pupils have 3D printed, assembled and painted their school cars ahead of the race as part of a Swansea University College of Engineering project, which was initiated at Ysgol Gynradd Nantgaredig.

Each model car is based on a design first developed by Daniel Norée, an award-winning Swedish 3D designer.

Swansea University has loaned 3D printers to each school taking part, with a number of local car dealerships on board as race event sponsors.

Team Mazda will be represented by Ysgol Gynradd Nantgaredig, Team Kia by Ysgol y Dderwen, Team Ford by Ysgol Teilo Sant, Team MG by Ysgol Llanybydder, Team Citroen by Ysgol Llanllwni, Team Volvo by Ysgol Carreg Hirfaen, Team Hyundai by Ysgol y Bedol, and Team Subaru by Ysgol Peniel.

Dr Dimitris Pletsas, of Swansea University’s College of Engineering, said:

“Technologies like 3D printing are becoming more and more commonplace throughout the world nowadays, with 3D printers having been used to make trainers, musical instruments and even houses.

“This kind of innovation represents the future of manufacturing, so it’s important for our children to learn about these technologies from a young age.

“But as part of the Formula 3D project, children haven’t just learned about 3D printing in an engaging and fun way. They’ve also learned other important skills, including teamworking, marketing and negotiation.

“These are among the skills that will be stand our children in good stead to access jobs being created in future, including those to be generated by the £1.3 billion Swansea Bay City Deal.

“I’d encourage people to come along to Carmarthen Park on June 22 to support the children taking part, who have shown so much dedication and enthusiasm during this project.”

In recent years, the cost of the machines have fallen considerably, making them much more affordable for people to be able to buy a cheap 3D printer in the UK.

Carmarthen Town Council has been confirmed as an event sponsor, with local businesses due to provide snacks and refreshments on the day. Banners are being produced for each school taking part, along with event programmes.

Sponsoring car dealerships include HG Bryer of Dryslwyn, Gravells of Kidwelly, J & J Motors of Cross Hands, OC Davies of Carmarthen, Bassetts of Carmarthen, Lloyd Motors of Aberaeron, John F Hutchings Ltd, and Howards of Carmarthen.