About the project

The F1 in Schools competition is an international programme designed to get students involved in the STEM subjects.

Students are given a strict set of requirements, and have to work as a team to design, brand, build and race a car powered by a CO2 gas canister.

With the introduction of a new class of competition, a new range of example vehicles was needed.

You can find more about the F1 in Schools programme here.

The challenge

The primary aim of the vehicles was to inspire. They needed to show that even with a tight brief, there were many options for shape, size and speed. The vehicles needed to spark the imagination of students, giving them something to beat and a challenge they could excel at.

Wide ranging

The designs for the vehicles needed to be wide ranging and varied, to show that anything is possible with the constraints they were given.

Manufacturing constraints

The competition has a strict set of guidelines for the vehicles, including rules on wheelbase lengths, positioning of cartridges etc. The vehicles also needed to be able to be cnc machined from a single pre cut piece of balsa wood.

The process

A template was drawn for up that took into account the different constraints of the competition, then each vehicl was sketched to fit this template. These were then CAD modelled, before being machined and painted.

The solution

In order to best inspire students, the range of cars that were developed were not designed to be the fastest, but more to resemble famous cars that they may recognise or come across during research. These included famous land speed record cars and even a car from ‘wacky races’.

The finished vehicles were constructed and went on tour with the track to promote the competition to school children.