Since my last blog, I have returned to college to continue my BTEC. I am studying some new subjects, which are further Maths, further Mechanical Principles, Pneumatics and Hydraulics, Engineering Materials and Project. I’m finding my subjects a lot more interesting this year as they’re more relevant to what I do at Parafix.
Engineering materials has helped me understand the processes of our suppliers where they manufacture things like jigs, stands, custom machinery and units for machines. It has also helped with picking materials for these things.
Pneumatics and hydraulics is useful because it has helped to generate ideas for my Project subject. It is based around planning and managing projects e.g. time and process flows. I’ve already had some teaching in this subject but to apply it to an engineering environment has been really useful. For this subject I’d like to produce an air driven rewind unit for the rotary machines and I’m in the process of putting together a proposal for it. The benefits of the project would be to run big jobs on smaller machines, freeing up the busy larger machines. We would be able to put the rotary units a lot closer together, which means less movement between them, resulting in tighter tolerances. It’s exciting to apply my learning and to bring something in that the company hasn’t done before.
In my R&D work I am now working on my own projects, rather than just elements of them alongside others. I have put together what I have learnt and can do it all on my own, for example, instead of being asked to make a sample, I can now suggest materials, create the drawings and produce tooling drawings and processes.
I still have my colleagues on hand if I need anything, but it’s nice to now be able to answer questions for others and resolve their problems too.
In my new STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) Ambassador role, I am now working with Hove Park School. They are building a go kart to race against other schools as part of a Green Power Trust event. I’m involved to help them along, show enthusiasm and to provide support. This includes technical support where I can, for example, where designing the body, I have helped to suggest materials. I’m really enjoying it, the kids are lovely.