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Creating an Engineering Model the Old Way

JAG Engineering LLC


I have often said to young engineers that the tools we have today were not even science fiction when I first graduated. Now a 3D CAD system can easily create complex shapes. Before the 3D programs there where products with complicated shapes. This video explains how cars were designed and the number of man hours that went into it. This old video was the closest I ever got to the advanced design studios. This was high security as indicated in the video. When I look at designs of many old products and realize the tools that did not exist then I realize how many skills are today lost. You may recognize the car towards the end of the video.



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Interesting video, JAG.

When I was in high school (back before the Ice Age), we had an assembly where there was a pitch for those who might be interested in doing automotive design. It was described just exactly this way, lots of styling sketches, clay mock-ups, etc. I was not big on the idea of working with modeling clay (I'm still not), so I did not apply.

In the video, they spoke of making measurements to 0.0001 inches on a clay model. I really doubt that! I think 0.01 inches would be stretching it.

Looks a lot like a T-bird, vintage about 1962.


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Ale, I am missing your point.

Dr D, I think it must have been Jr. high where GM came to the school to introduce there design contest program for young students. They were likely scouting for talent at a very early age. I kept the literature for years. It may still be among the boxes that get moved but never opened. Thanks to Google https://history.gmheritagecenter.com/wiki/index.php/The_Fisher_Body_Craftsman's_Guild_Model_Car_Competition  had not thought of that for years.



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A really interesting video JAG and one I've not seen before. The methods by which cars were designed and produced then bear little resemblance to the systems employed in present day car manufacture and unfortunately it's only too evident that many manual skills have been lost due to the advent of the computer age. In England there is a company called Morgan who refuse to upgrade their production methods, preferring instead to utilise the same means as they used in the beginning. Their cars have been 'hand made' for many years. When I visited the factory I was surprised to find that the oak former used to produce wheel arches is the same one used several decades before and the alloy body panels are rolled by skilled craftsmen. Despite this, or possibly because if it, Morgan's order books are very full for the next several years.

Is the glass-domed Futura car shown in the video the one used by Batman and Robin? I thought that was designed by George Barris!

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