Hello from Alabama - can I get your opinions?

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by izpirkt, Jan 29, 2011.

  1. izpirkt

    izpirkt New Member

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    Hello everyone,

    Though I am newly registered on this forum, I have been looking around at the wealth of information here for quite some time. In fact, there is such a wealth of data in communities like these, that I am doing my masters thesis to get the word out about DIY forums.

    I am a graduate student at Auburn University in Industrial design, having stepped out of the 9-5 work force after 7 years as an mechanical engineer. I have been a DIY enthusiast for years, and have frequently received design help from members in forums like this. Your enthusiasm and dedication to share information and help each other is amazing, and I want to get more people involved. Having other designers "catch the bug" and get building themselves is what I am going to be spending the next couple of semesters on.

    Along with writing a thesis about online communities like this one, I am going to be completing a project on an electric pusher trailer design. I believe that the huge amount of experience, experimentation, and practical knowledge on this forum will be a great benefit to the design of that project. (and I know that most of you are ICE users, but that is another discussion)

    So, I have two questions for you: What do you believe is the best way for me to post about this project, gain interest from members and produce a better design than I could hack together on my own.

    The other question is the flip side. What do you believe a professional designer could bring to contribute to a DIY forum like this?

    Thanks guys, I am looking forward to the adventure
     
  2. GearNut

    GearNut Active Member

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    I say post your project in the Electric Bicycle section.
    (I know.....blatantly obvious.... :oops: )

    As for producing a better design, look over the designs that others have made as well as the commercially available products, bicycles in particular, and see what works now. Read the customer reviews, if available, and you will have knowledge of what needs to be re-designed.
    Do what you have been taught to do and re-design your own using the best available products while weeding out the known faults.

    What could a professional designer contribute to this forum? Hmmmmm......
    Well there are alot of folks that have issues with the various power platforms and there are always threads on improvements that typically end up half baked as there done by shade tree tinkerers without degrees in design and engineering. Read up on the old threads and you will see a pattern evolve. You might see something that catches your imagination and just run with it.

    Norman has even put out an open invitation to anyone whom comes up with a good idea for an improvement and if he agrees with the proposed idea as being worthy, offers his casting and machining skills to produce the improvement on a limited production basis.
     
  3. msrfan

    msrfan Active Member

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    There's a lot of ingenious machanisms in industry. If you follow our builds and know a better way to get from here to there, maybe some of your mechanical engineering experience could save us some grief from time to time. Feel free to chime in with ideas. Thanks.
     

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