As a silver-level sponsor of Illini Motorsports, Mahr Federal will donate digital gages, micrometers, calipers, and a Digimar 814 SR height measuring and scribing instrument to the University of Illinois (U of I) student organization.

Each year, Illini Motorsports and other Formula SAE teams are challenged by a fictional manufacturing company to design and develop a small formula-style racing car targeted at the nonprofessional weekend autocross enthusiast. Based on a predetermined set of templates and rules, they must design the fastest, most effective racing machine while minimizing costs, maximizing reliability, and using the latest racing technologies. Competitions are held globally each year.

The Illini Motorsports team has had many top-10 finishes and in their most recent season the group’s car finished 3rd out of 80 teams at Formula SAE Lincoln.

“Our team manufactures many tight-tolerance parts in house to support our racecar,” says Shreyas Sudhakar, a student at the U of I and the Engine Team leader. “Anywhere from cutting simple parts on the band saw, to CNC milling suspension components, to rapid prototyping custom intake geometries, it is critical that our parts are dimensionally accurate to ensure proper fit, performance, and safety of our drivers.”

Mahr Federal President Tony Picone says the company supports the team in part to better train engineers. He adds, “Illini Motorsports doesn’t just turn out high-performance cars, they turn out well-trained engineers. We are very pleased to help support their efforts and look forward to some of these engineers perhaps joining our ranks in the not too distant future.” http://motorsports.illinois.edu, www.mahr.com

Rasoma gear making machining centers available through GMTA

Rasoma machine tools, used primarily for gearmaking, are available to the German Machine Tools of America’s (GMTA) automotive powertrain, and off-highway customers. Rasoma produces vertical turning centers, 4-axis shaft turning centers, end machining, double spindle, and special purpose machining centers.

Founded in 1919 and based in Döbeln, Germany, Rasoma provides gear machines for milling, hobbing, and shaping. The machining centers’ separate X- and Z-axis slides offer high rigidity. Thermal stability is enhanced by cooled motor spindles, and the rapid traverse on these centers ranges up to 60m/min at high acceleration, with feed and removal speeds to 120m/min, less than 6 seconds from part to part, and turret indexing typically under 1 second.

GMTA President Walter Friedrich says, “This alignment dovetails perfectly with our other lines of gearmaking, laser and finishing machines, and systems.” www.gmtamerica.com

Postal Service narrows field for next-gen vehicles

The United States Postal Service (USPS) awarded contracts to six prime suppliers to build 50 prototype vehicles to replace the aging postal delivery vehicle. The next phase of the Next Generation Delivery Vehicles (NGDV) acquisition process narrows the field to six from 15 companies that submitted proposals in 2015.

The selected suppliers for the $34 million prototype contract are:

  • Military vehicle producer AM General
  • Turkish automaker Karsan
  • Indian tractor and car maker Mahindra
  • Military and firetruck company Oshkosh
  • Commercial truck producers Utilimaster, a subsidiary of Spartan
  • Commercial truck maker VT Hackney

Suppliers have the discretion to team or subcontract with additional suppliers, and it is anticipated some will do so to develop the finished prototypes. Half of the prototypes will feature hybrid and new technologies, including alternative fuel capabilities.

The suppliers will have approximately one year from contract award to develop and produce their prototypes. The Postal Service then plans to test the vehicles during a six-month period in a range of different climates, topography, population centers, and delivery environments. www.usps.gov

Allied Machine and Engineering buys Wohlhaupter

Ohio-based holemaking and finishing tools provider Allied Machine and Engineering Corp. has purchased a majority of the shares of Wohlhaupter GmbH Frickenhausen, Germany; Wohlhaupter USA; and Wohlhaupter India.

Wohlhaupter produces modular facing and boring heads, grooving heads, clamping tools, and customized solutions for boring operations. Through the purchase, Allied adds Wohlhaupter’s larger diameter boring tools and digital boring tools.

“Allied Machine is a perfect fit with Wohlhaupter,” says Allied Machine and Engineering President and CEO Bill Stokey. “Both are family-owned companies whose foundations are built upon excellent quality, flexibility, and ability to customize products and services, as well as a preference for building strong partnerships with our customers. These commonalities will produce a seamless integration of our philosophies and services.”

Customer sales and support will continue to be provided by both Allied and Wohlhaupter.

Eric Tope, vice president of marketing and sales at Allied, adds that the purchase gives the company a manufacturing presence in Europe and an additional 30 field sales engineers throughout the US, Germany, and India. www.alliedmachine.com