A solid slab of granite the size of an average living room is being supplied to Formula One car builder British American Racing for its new factory at Brackley, Northamptonshire.
It is the largest supplied for the purpose and will be used as a highly stable surface, or surface plate, to assemble racing car rigs. These rigs or cradles are used during the building to ensure the car meets tight dimensional criteria.
Today’s cars are built and tuned to race on a specific race track and modified to suit each different track. The rig has a key role in that and the surface plate provides a datum for any dimensional changes.
Metrology company WBJ, of Hyde, Cheshire, made the surface plate which measures 5.2m x 3.3m and weighs 13.5 tonnes. To ensure quality, WBJ assigned a single craftsman to the job, which took about four weeks to complete.