By: MAAP CEO, Cole Scrogham
One of the goals MAAP looks to achieve is to uncover what each student-intern’s personal interests and abilities are and then direct them to practical, real-world application. Recently, we added some opportunities to combine specialized modeling software with 3D printing to re-create NLA (No Longer Available) parts for some of our client restoration projects. Engineering students at James Madison University use a well known industry product software package known as SolidWorks to design three-dimensional images of a part, then download the resulting file into a 3D printer to create an actual plastic rendering of the design. Many students come to MAAP with some apprehension about this process, which is often referred to only in textbooks or involves creating a rather generic piece to satisfy a specific design requirement. With a little coaching, students are encouraged to give it a try with the idea they will likely be making several versions, thus eliminating the fear around perfecting something new. Once the design gets going, they can test the plastic part in a prototype assembly, then refine it until it’s ready to be fabricated for final use. One of these projects resulted in a re-creation of a motor drive for a very rare electric sunroof, designed in house right here at MAAP.
Lately, I have been encouraging students to print their favorite 3D project to take along during interviews. There is nothing better than handing someone an actual part and then telling them what it is and how you made it! That’s going the extra mile here at MAAP.
I am heading to the Porsche Development Center in Weissach, Germany soon for the final assembly and training phase of the new Porsche 963, to be campaigned by MAAP partner JDC-Miller Motorsports. The team hopes to have the car in time for one of the upcoming rounds of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. MAAP students have been able to participate alongside me in IMSA races with JDC-Miller, and our upcoming graduate Jack Gavin (’23) has been able to create a schedule in his final year at JMU that allowed him to participate with the team this season. Jack has done a great job working in data acquisition and learning about the industry, and has accepted a job offer as a designer in the off-road bike industry in North Carolina. As we prepare for new interns at MAAP, we want to take a moment to wish Jack the best!
New Historian Project
MAAP Board member Kevin Borg has been working alongside MAAP History Intern Avi Rosenblum on the continuing project between MAAP and the JMU Library to digitize our collection of periodicals. With a small change to the format of the internship this year, Dr. Borg is asking Avi to split his time between scanning and digitizing our collection to producing written content, with the idea to capture some of the history of the day alongside the automobile. We are looking forward to seeing his future content.