Problem solving is an important job skill to have in the workplace. Students in the Engineering Technology program were honing their problem solving skills through a practical and fun learning experience of designing and racing slot cars.
Each student had to design a car of predetermined size. The design had to include a means to hold the motors, guides to keep it on the track, and a way to add weight to the front and back axles to achieve maximum traction and speed on the track. The cars had to be strong enough to last through several races and had to be fast.
Students designed and printed the rims to accept the rubber treads for their car's wheels as well as the car bodies using a 3-D printer. Engineering Tech instructor, Jon Clouse, set a limit on the amount of plastic that could be used and the time it took to print the design. Students were required to complete a set of prints for their cars that included methods of construction and dimensions.
Students then raced their cars against each other and by a process of elimination heats, the winner was Nick Heckman (pictured) from Marion Local with Alex Hartings, of St. Henry, coming in a very close second.
The next problem solving project for these students: Designing holders for markers that FANUC robots can grab and write on a white board.