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Engineering put to use

Posted Apr 27 2010 8:38am
So as most people know (as I seem to have told everyone) on June 2nd I officially finish my degree in Mechanical Engineering.

It has definitely not been easy, it's a challenging subject, with the most difficult aspect having been my 4th year thesis that I submitted last week. If anyone wants to read it I'll happily send you the 1MB Microsoft Word file, makes for great night time reading, possibly the driest 18,000 words ever!

Anyway before I can pick up my diploma I must complete a group project with 4 other of my classmates, presumably to prove I am not entirely inept at communication and team work! So yesterday, myself and my 4 other teammates received our design briefs to design a hand powered tricycle for disabled children. In my 4 years of engineering finally a problem that I feel socially constructive in solving.

Most of our problems consist of car doors, ergonomic desks, oil trasfer lines...etc. Not exactly the most constructive design elements, but something that could help disabled children get out and about again, exercise and play with their friends is an exciting prospect for sure.

Currently we are looking at different frames, components, seating options and wheel set ups but it looks as if the group is working well together and we'll hopefully come up with a great design at the end of it.

I keep trying to push for Zipp wheelsets and Shimano Di2 components but the "cost" is apparently too high...for carbon wheels and electronic shifting? No price is too high!

Anyway I hope it is a worthwhile project to someone and some of our research gets used somewhere down the line. Every kid deserves the freedom to get outside and explore, regardless of disability and I hope more and more can.

Mike
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