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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Posts
    475


    Are there any mechanical engineers that visit this site? I just started my third year/junior year at a university and was thinking about changing my major to mechanical engineering. I haven't done much research on the field yet, so I was hoping some of you could give me some insight on the field.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    566
    Nah, any that were here weren't for long, they were run off like it was the 'Ponderosa'(they usually had a bad attitude)
    LMTD gave one a lashing a while back that was quite entertaining...kind of felt bad for him though

    [Edited by hi-tork on 10-22-2004 at 09:58 PM]
    Hey mosquito, quit biting (slap!!) me... ©
    Anyone like Josey Wales?
    C'mon, you know I'm right!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Huntsville,AL
    Posts
    4,125
    which univ?
    what are your tough courses this yr?

    what is your interest after the mech degree?
    truthly, you will probably make more as a tradesman unless you get lucky.

    However, design engr not too hazardous, unless you fall out of the chair or get killed driving to | from work. & benefits may be better--

    good in math? can you take apart an engine & put it back together?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    East Stroudsburg, PA
    Posts
    13,215
    Originally posted by hi-tork
    Nah, any that were here weren't for long, they were run off like it was the 'Ponderosa'(they usually had a bad attitude)
    LMTD gave one a lashing a while back that was quite entertaining...kind of felt bad for him though

    [Edited by hi-tork on 10-22-2004 at 09:58 PM]
    Really?

    Bamacracker has about 6000 posts here. A mechanical engineer.

    Carnak has over 1200. Another mechanical engineer.

    Try posting this in General Discussion, as it will get more exposure. BC hasn't been around much, but Carnak is on this site daily...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    566
    Originally posted by condenseddave
    Really?

    Bamacracker has about 6000 posts here. A mechanical engineer.

    Carnak has over 1200. Another mechanical engineer.

    Try posting this in General Discussion, as it will get more exposure. BC hasn't been around much, but Carnak is on this site daily... [/B]
    Sorry, no offense Bama & Carnak, I was thinking more along the lines of this though...
    http://hvac-talk.com/vbb/showthread.php?threadid=52049
    guys who swooped in real quick and often swooped right back out...a lot of it is attitude, see, I didn't know about Bama and Carnak, they have good attitudes
    Hey mosquito, quit biting (slap!!) me... ©
    Anyone like Josey Wales?
    C'mon, you know I'm right!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    East Stroudsburg, PA
    Posts
    13,215
    Both good men. Bama is a busy dude, and doesn't get around here much anymore.

    The one in the link you listed, well, there's one or two of them a year, and they're mainly here for our personal entertainment,

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    108
    Take something apart, then put it back together. If you look at it and say "I got it together exactly right", then you're cut out to be a technician. If you look at it and say "I could have designed it better", then think engineer.

    If you have never taken something apart and put it together, you are probably not cut out to be a technician. You should also rethink going into engineering.

    Get a summer job working with your hands. If the thought of going back to classrooms in the fall makes you kind of sick, then keep the job. It should not be a money decision.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    184
    I am a Chemical Engineer and if this field is your interest I found my education to be an excellent starting point for developing an understanding of super heat/subcooling fluid mechanics of air and refrigerants and then applying them in a trouble shooting and design manner. Without a doubt I have been humbled (and grown) when applying theory to actual problems.

    Money is going to be better for an experienced tech being paid by the hour vs. a salaried engineer working 70 hours/week. You will be far better off adding your education to your experience.

    I don't know what Mechanical engineering will teach you past strength of material/statics and dynamics.

    Chem E you will get:
    Heat Transfer (convection, conduction, radiation)
    Fluid Mechanics (duct calculations, friction losses)
    Electrical Network theory (that is how three phase works)
    Circuits (that solenoid is open)amps, watts, volts
    Process Control, (tstats, thermocouples, PID loops)
    Unit operations (chillers, cooling towers, filtration, humidification, purification...)

    In short, working in this field you are already a huge leg up on your classmates as you have seen all this in application.

    Good Luck

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Posts
    475
    Originally posted by engineerguy
    Take something apart, then put it back together. If you look at it and say "I got it together exactly right", then you're cut out to be a technician. If you look at it and say "I could have designed it better", then think engineer.

    If you have never taken something apart and put it together, you are probably not cut out to be a technician. You should also rethink going into engineering.

    Get a summer job working with your hands. If the thought of going back to classrooms in the fall makes you kind of sick, then keep the job. It should not be a money decision.

    I have been an HVAC technician for about 5 years now, so I'm not a conventional student. I do get ideas about how it could have been done better or how something could have been designed better to make my life easier. I have wrote down some of these ideas some of which include safety devices and alternative designs for HVAC equipment. I'm chose finance as my major mostly because I was still undecided at the time.

    [Edited by dave r on 10-23-2004 at 06:39 PM]

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    11,808
    A guy with hands on and the degree would have no problem getting work.

    The hands on sure helped me, I worked for an OEM right out of school. The Cracker was worked for a couple OEMs.

    Too bad you are not a tin basher.
    The way we build has a greater impact on our comfort, energy consumption and IAQ than any HVAC system we install.

    http://www.ductstrap.com/

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Posts
    41
    Hey

    I just graduated with an ME degree. Its a great degree to have because all engineers "spouted" from here. Its hard to do but I love it. I was on a team with a guy that was 48 years old and he is doing it to get his degree this january and he was at the top of the class. I would get the ME degree again in an instant. My favorites classes were thermodynamics, (I took three of those and got A's in all) and then heat transfer. But if you want a ME degree get ahold of me, just reply to this message. I would gladly speak to you about it.

    Jon

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    4H: Hot, Humid Houston H.O.
    Posts
    3,304

    Building Science

    I think a degree in ME might enable you to make a good career in the field of "Building Science". I believe there are a lot of problems needing to be solved, that are ill-served by traditional trades in that the problem has aspects of two or more trades. A degree in ME plus some experience would allow you to become a serious Mr. Wizard who can pull together a big picture of building needs, including all of HVAC.

    Do some Google searching and reading on "Lstiburek" and I think you will find out what I mean. You will find lots of things to study.

    Being able to tell people where their energy bill goes, could be worth a lot of money in consulting fees to you. Already there are companies growing profits in the "Energy Services" field, frequently they promise a certain amount of energy savings and claim a proportion of that as their payment. With an ME degree you can be their local expert.
    With energy prices seemingly destined to be higher this will be more important, and probably a good concept to base a career on. Oil prices will continue to go up and down, but in my opinion all energy prices will average higher for the next several generations.

    Hope this helps -- P. Student

    [Edited by perpetual_student on 10-24-2004 at 11:44 AM]

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    North of Boston, MA
    Posts
    270

    Mechanical Engineer

    I am a former cubicle-dwelling engineer who got frustrated because I prefer hands-on field work. The current facts are that there is a GREATER need for talented technicians than there are for engineers. Don't believe your college counselors and their statistics. Engineers are considererd "Overhead" (like a tool) by accountants and there is alot of incentive to outsource these jobs (India, Asia, others). A technician who can troubleshoot is more valuable (and has better job security) than ANY engineer.
    My experience allows me to offer this advice: If you've completed some college classes, go to a tech school (you can get the basics in HVAC in a 6 month program; no need to go more than that), and become a tech. Continue your education by signing up for one-two day seminars.
    "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take"--Wayne Gretzky

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