Copyright WWW.DBBP.COM | updated 18-September-2023

What is Reverse Engineering? Well this recent project is a nice example. A customer wanted to put a bigger engine in his modern Triumph, which meant also a bigger throttle body. The existing aircleaner was plastic and served as a mounting point for various parts and also as the battery box. The challenge was to increase the size of the intake which meant I would have to copy the front half of the existing aircleaner, get it in CAD, modify it to fit the larger intake and then print it. To make it extra interesting the customer and his bike were in Spain and I am located in the Netherlands....

He sent me the existing aircleaner plus one that fit the new big engine but not his frame. He suggested I use the bigger intake rubber and make it fit in the existing aircleaner. I removed everything that could be removed and made laserscans of all the parts:

The next step involved turning the scan of the front half into a "clean" CAD model, a scan file consists of millions of small triangles, and I needed to turn those into solid CAD geometry. This postprocessing is usually the most time consuming part. Then I removed the existing small intake rubber and superimposed the bigger intake rubber in the correct position.

I modified the front half to fit the bigger intake rubber and showed this to my custiomer in Spain,. who took some measurements and concluded the increased width might interfere with the wiring harness. We decided to not use the big intake rubber he had sent me but to use some silicone rubber hose with the same inside diameter. I updated the CAD model agin and this version was approved, so I had it printed (by Shapeways) and reassembled the whole thing.


All has been sent back to Spain and the customer can now complete his engine swap.
Quite a tricky part that would have been very difficult to make without laserscanning and 3d printing.