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Collaboration creates innovative design and production process

Composites manufacturer, Cobra International has collaborated with Schmitt Marine, provider of performance steering wheel systems for the marine industry.

The partnership, which also involves engineering firm Talon Technology, has created the new Primus CF wheel.

Looking to offer carbon fibre as a top of the range option for premium vessel owners, Schmitt Marine aimed to combine the style of its classic steel wheel designs with a new, strong and lightweight carbon composite construction.

Working together with engineer Geoff Germon, CEO of Talon Technology Pty. Ltd and adjunct professor of design at the University of Canberra, Cobra concentrated on creating a production methodology for the Primus CF that could seamlessly transfer parts from tool to PU clear coating with a minimum of process steps and materials.

As a result, seamless carbon prepreg skins featuring UV resistant black Santoprene rubber grip patcheswere combined with a toughened epoxy glass fibre core to create a carbon fibre steering wheel that has been optimised to meet all National Marine Manufacturers Association and CE testing regulations for US and European end markets.

“Talon and Cobra have shown how easy it is to switch to composites,” said Jed Schober, product development specialist, Schmitt Marine. “They have created an innovative design and production process that improves performance at a smart price point.”

The new wheel will be on display at METSTRADE.

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