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Motorsport Fabrication Fundamentals: Templates

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00:00 - Motorsport fabrication can be a very time consuming process and for this reason we need to work a little smarter and employ some extra preparation techniques to assist us with a clean and professional fit and finish.
00:12 A good example of this is creating and using templates prior to producing a component.
00:17 Put simply, a template is a pattern that's used as a guide to make something.
00:21 Building a template out of inexpensive and easily obtainable products, means that you can proof and perfect the part before making it out of metal.
00:30 There are a number of materials we can use for templates and we'll start with the most common and accessible, a plain sheet of white A4 paper.
00:38 Using paper for templates is a great way to work out intricate designs of tabs and brackets and having a sharp set of scissors on hand, a pencil, a ruler and a compass will make this process a lot easier and neater.
00:51 The downside of paper is that it lacks any real rigidity and once the templates start getting bigger, cardboard becomes a good choice.
00:59 Cardboard is still very easy to work with and again having that sharp pair of scissors, a pencil, ruler and a compass, will make your life a lot easier here.
01:07 If you want to step things up a bit from there though, the ultimate templating material is polycarbonate sheeting.
01:14 This is a great material for perfecting our part before transferring it onto metal.
01:17 1 mm thick sheets are perfect because they offer a level of rigidity similar to that of 1 mm steel.
01:25 The benefits of the sheet being clear are fairly obvious too.
01:28 Don't underestimate just how helpful it is to be able to press the sheet up against the space you need to template and map out the outer dimensions, hole positions and fold lines accurately.
01:39 By using a sharp pair of industrial scissors, we can cut the polycarbonate to our dimensions, drill out our hole positions, bend our fold lines and perfect the part on the vehicle.
01:50 This allows us to visualise the finished part and even add additional strength into it by attaching polycarbonate gussets.
01:56 Once this is perfect and we're happy with our part, we can then flatten out the polycarbonate and begin the process of transferring it onto our steel.
02:04 The best thing about these polycarbonate templates is that they last forever, which means you can file them away for the next time you should ever want to reproduce the specific part.
02:14 A polycarbonate template can also be dropped off at your local laser cutting shop where they can easily scan it and laser cut the final part out of steel or aluminium.
02:23 Templating allows us to flex some creativity in the fabrication process and as motorsport fabricators we need to be consistently thinking about how we can make things stronger, better looking and easier to work on and templating is the perfect way to do this.

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