A Machynlleth-based bike manufacturer is set to begin using 3D-printed parts for its championship winning bikes.

Atherton Bikes has collaborated with the global engineering technologies company Renishaw to help create its own in-house additive manufacturing process – more commonly known as 3D printing.

It will allow the company to develop more unique and durable components for its bikes.

Atherton Bikes is World Championship-winning manufacturer whose mountain bikes are used in international tournaments, with three World Championships won by Atherton.

Dan Brown, co-founder of Atherton Bikes, said: “With this machine we are able to keep up with the bespoke and high demand manufacturing requirements, especially during the busy race season.

“We are able to easily modify the lug design using computer aided design, allowing us to quickly produce bespoke lugs and reproduce them if necessary.

“Renishaw has supported us throughout the process, from manufacturing parts before we invested in a machine to installation and training our staff.

“Some of our colleagues were personally trained by the Renishaw engineer at New Mills who personally manufactured our parts.

“His specific knowledge about our production process allowed our staff to quickly adapt to in-house manufacturing after the training session.”

The National Wales: Parts supplied by RenishawParts supplied by Renishaw

Atherton is located in Machynlleth, which the company says gives its customers the ability to test their news bikes on the nearby mountains, a short drive from its offices.

The 3D printing process is designed to reduce manufacturing time when it comes to new and complex parts.

This includes using additively manufacturing lightweight lugs to reinforce joints between tubes, distributing the stresses put on bikes over hard terrain.

MORE NEWS:

 

Bryan Austin, director of sales at Renishaw, said: “By investing in additive manufacturing processes, Atherton has the design freedom to develop the best parts for its bikes, something that was difficult to achieve using traditional casting methods.

“Casting using moulds does not lend itself to producing the bespoke components that are required for Atherton’s customer.

“Casting also produces heavier parts because it cannot produce the internal honeycomb structure that allows 3D printed parts to be lighter.”

If you value The National's journalism, help grow our team of reporters by becoming a subscriber.