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TruckElectric

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Source: https://www.tesmanian.com/blogs/tesmanian-blog/cybertrucks-steel-skin-testing

Tesla putting Cybertruck's skin to the test

There is no question that Cybertruck is polarizing in many regards. Its specs no doubt shock and awe, from its tri-motor option to its possible laser windshield wipers, over its Armor Glass to its extreme, angular design.

The controversial look isn't just a matter of CEO Elon Musk’s love for the Blade Runner movie or the "Hog" vehicle in Microsoft's Halo. Its unique aesthetics are in large part due to the structural integrity needed for its exoskeleton design.

The prototype revealed last year has been discussed by Sandy Munro, from Munro & Associates, on multiple occasions in a very positive light. Mr. Munro has pointed out not only his struggle to bring similar designs to consumers but also all the advantages of it, in particular the reduced cost of manufacturing.

The Cybertruck won't have the modular vehicle platform like the standard vehicle designs you see on the street. Its body will bear the entire weight of the vehicle, eliminating the need for a chassis.

To further underline its strength, Tesla originally announced it would use a 3mm thick, proprietary type of metal--"30x, cold-rolled steel." While heavier than the aluminum, predominantly used for most of Tesla's current models, it would still offer reduced weight, according to Mr. Munro. And meanwhile, it would render the Cybertruck bulletproof. Elon him self made remarks that the Cybertruck could be shot at with a 9mm handgun, leaving a mark without structural damage, however.

However, like all companies that Elon Musk steers--which have a proclivity for vertical integration--better design or materials are constantly implemented on the fly. Cybertruck won't be an exception.

As a case in point, last month, referencing steel used on SpaceX’ Starship, Musk indicated on Twitter that tweaks are already in progress:

“We’re rapidly changing alloy constituents & forming methods, so traditional names like 304L will become more of an approximation.”

And when asked whether the alloy slated for Cybertruck would be changing, too, the Tesla CEO replied with a simple: “Yes.”

And while Tesla works on one of its concoctions, the EV maker is also testing out its samples in the wild. Just like any product that needs to take the abuse of everyday life's wear and tear, Tesla is conducting tests in the environments in which the vehicles will eventually occupy.

Based on Tesla's field technician's statement, Tesla has deployed different types of steel across its service vehicle fleet in the form of a steel plate, mounted as a front license plate (depicted below).


steel2_large.jpg

steel1_large.jpg

The ingenuity in this approach illustrates Tesla's R&D is anything but standard, reflecting cost-effectiveness and a solid variety of test areas and data aggregation while mitigating a need for additional impact on resources.

While the final design is still to come, Elon has already pointed out certain characteristics that are beyond contention, one of which is the vehicle's dimensions. Whether Cybertruck will remain bulletproof could, for example, the change should there be a shift in the material used.

The originally proposed material prompted Mr. Munro to make a small presentation during an interview. He was presenting different size ammunitions, from 9mm up to .50 caliber rifle round, making a point that all but the last round would be stopped by the vehicle's materials.

This is one of the electric truck's properties that, understandably, has appealed to law enforcement agencies across the globe, contributing to multiple vehicle orders. Should this characteristic be lost to a newly chosen metal/design, the current count of preorders for the Cybertruck could be seen taking a hit.
 
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ldjessee

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That makes so much sense, testing the steel on the front of vehicles (and kind of low)... now, hope they continue that into the winter and have some in the Michigan, Chicago, Buffalo NY, Denver, and similar climates that have salted and sanded roads during the winter to really see how bad it can get.
 

CyberMoose

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I really hope they release some testing videos. I really want to see what sort of materials will be able to scratch it, how deep the scratches will go and how easily it can be buffed out. I still wonder if there will be a protective coating on the outside of the Cybertruck, I know that some watch makers use a protective coating on stainless steel to prevent small scratches. A great scratch test would be letting some big dogs jump up on the driver door to greet the driver, i'm confident the Cybertruck can probably handle that.

It would also be good to know how much the exterior of the Cybertruck will heat up in the winter, what pressure will dent, salt water rusting. I have so many questions when it comes to just the body of the Cybertruck.
 

VI Tesla

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I really hope they release some testing videos. I really want to see what sort of materials will be able to scratch it, how deep the scratches will go and how easily it can be buffed out. I still wonder if there will be a protective coating on the outside of the Cybertruck, I know that some watch makers use a protective coating on stainless steel to prevent small scratches. A great scratch test would be letting some big dogs jump up on the driver door to greet the driver, i'm confident the Cybertruck can probably handle that.

It would also be good to know how much the exterior of the Cybertruck will heat up in the winter, what pressure will dent, salt water rusting. I have so many questions when it comes to just the body of the Cybertruck.
I've got 304 stainless steel counter tops in my house, yes they get fine scratches and it kinda sucks getting the first couple, but after a few thousand it just adds to the patina and it all looks the same. You just let it get all those fine scratches and in short order it's just the grain of the steel. Polishing them all out...I'd hate to do all that work, just for them to come back again when the door rubs against a stick or something.
Protective coating might be interesting, but I think I'll just go with the all natural patina.
 

CyberMoose

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I've got 304 stainless steel counter tops in my house, yes they get fine scratches and it kinda sucks getting the first couple, but after a few thousand it just adds to the patina and it all looks the same. You just let it get all those fine scratches and in short order it's just the grain of the steel. Polishing them all out...I'd hate to do all that work, just for them to come back again when the door rubs against a stick or something.
Protective coating might be interesting, but I think I'll just go with the all natural patina.
Personally I don't think i'll care about the Cybertruck scratching. As someone who goes offroading a lot with a Jeep, scratches are like a badge of honor. It would be nice if I can polish out the scratches once every few years or so and I suspect that will definitely be possible. I don't really want to wrap the Cybertruck, I think it looks perfect.
 

Revoltlution

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Doesn't look like the 3mm we're expecting.
 

CyberMoose

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Doesn't look like the 3mm we're expecting.
Well no, this is just a small piece that used for testing. I don't think they are going to put some test metal on a car and then shoot it or crash something into it. These pieces are probably going to be testing just normal wear that you might see on the truck. Such as how resistant they are to rust from salt in the air, salt water, regular water, road salt (winter), scratches from gravel roads.

Those are the kinds of things that someone who doesn't get in an accident or go off roading will be most likely to be worried about.

When it comes to testing the actually 3mm thick body of our Cybertrucks, i'm excited to see the actual crash tests and rollover tests of the vehicle. I'm also excited to see what sort of youtube videos people will do with their 'indestrucible truck'.
 
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TruckElectric

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I'm also excited to see what sort of youtube videos people will do with their 'indestrucible truck'.
Never thought about the YT vids that will be coming forth. Yes indeed there will be no shortage of those once enough people get their hands on one.

I want one of those "influencer" jobs making money hand over fist just talking about the Cybertruck and showing some GoPro rides, four-wheeling, at the beach, in the mountains..... yeah I could do that 😁
 

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Hey. Can we anodize that body? Think of the potential.
 

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I saw the promo trailer for the in production movie, "The Batman" I would love to see some of that styling of the batmobile built into the cyber truck.
 

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Personally I don't think i'll care about the Cybertruck scratching. As someone who goes offroading a lot with a Jeep, scratches are like a badge of honor. It would be nice if I can polish out the scratches once every few years or so and I suspect that will definitely be possible. I don't really want to wrap the Cybertruck, I think it looks perfect.
I used to go off roading when I lived in Arizona. We’d call those scratches “desert pinstripe”. 😬
 

OneLapper

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3mm stainless steel is still going to get pitted by rocks kicked up from other cars. It might not dent the nose of the CT, but it'll leave a mark in the surface.

The SS that Tesla is using doesn't appear to have any "finish" at all. It appears to be just regular 2B stainless steel. This does pose a problem when we want to clean up the pits and nicks: any way we try to clean up the surface we end up giving the surface some type of grain or polish.

In my business we have vehicles with heavy thick mirror polished SS bumpers (#8 finish). This needs to be sanded and polished annually to remove the pits from the dust and rocks kicked up from vehicles in front.

The Delorean has a brushed finished, like a B4. That has a directional grain that you can use a 3M non-metal pad to freshen up. This works well and is easy to do.

I plan to use a thick, clear sheet of paint protection film on the nose and hood of my CT. The bus industry uses this on the $1m-2m coaches. It's super thick, lasts years without discoloring.

I'd love to see a polished or brushed finished CT! Oohh but the labor to do that.......
 
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Ehninger1212

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I plan to use the "Wabi-Sabi" approach on my cybertruck. Perfectly Imperfect. I will not be taking steps to stop the stainless from weathering naturally, Also.. any factory defects that do not negatively impact the performance of the vehicle i will welcome with open arms.. i think it adds a bit of character.
 

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