Guinness World Records: 3D printing is part of the recipe of the world’s lightest e-bike

Image: TU Dort­mund

Dennis Freiburg, a mechanical engineer based in Germany, now has his name in the Guinness Book of World Records for achieving the world’s lightest electric bicycle prototype.

Named Freicycle, the bicycle weighs 6.872 kg (15 lb 2.40 oz) and its construction was part of the mechanical engineer’s doctoral project at TU Dortmund.

What’s in the recipe for the Freicycle?

Freiburg said “there were no serious incidents while constructing the bike, but there were a lot of broken 3D printed pedals to get them as light and stable as possible. We can imagine, as this is no easy task!”

However, the main challenging phase of the project remains the testing stage of electrical components such as the battery and motor. Tests methods for validation are not available to all. Only a few companies and institutes can provide such a test. In addition to that, the expensive cost of the project (roughly 10,000 Euro (that’s around 9,035 GBP and 11,137 USD)), was quite a lot to bear for a PhD student.

Luckily, he was backed by the TU Dortmund University, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Velotech and Merida Bikes (that provided the main base of the bike).

According to the innovator, “mostly the people cannot believe that it is an e-bike. They keep lifting it up and saying crazy how light it is“.

But, in the 3D printing industry, it’s very much possible to believe that. As a matter of fact, we recently witnessed the power of generative engineering in the fabrication of a very light 3D printed bike. Produced with aluminium, the bike would be 60% lighter than classically developed bike designs. Today, the use of 3D printing in the production of lightweight parts for bikes has led a few companies to make it their core business.

As for Dennis, this Guinness World Records title meant a lot to him as it is the perfect reward for his hard work over the last years.

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