#inktober #engineering Challenge 31 days of drawing

#inktober is a 31 day challenge created by cartoonist Jake Parker to encourage artists to develop both their inking skills and positive drawing habits by doing one ink drawing per day for the entire month. I’m bringing inktober to engineering to encourage development of the overlooked but powerful ability of freehand drawing for engineering.

We’ll follow the development of a hypothetical metal additive manufacturing system.

The medium of choice will be the white board. But we may also delve into the proverbial back of the envelope, engineering notebooks, and even digital media.

Day 1 : Introduction

The important role drawing can play in the success of your product, career, and business. What is precision engineering? Defining success for a precision machine. And designing from the “product” out.


Day 2 : Designing from the product out

Defining the performance of our metal additive manufacturing system in terms of what our customer’s customer is paying for. Two “fun” precision engineering challenges we’ll have to deal with: Thermal management at precision interfaces & interchangeability. And the three states of the system’s output – raw material, material being fused, and finished product – and how they and their associated processes might affect performance.


Day 3 : Product and machine footprint

We look at how the raw material, processing, and final form of the product produced by the system influence the basic layout of the system. “Round” has lots of benefits, including volumetric efficiency and rotational symmetry. But the way the material is processed suggests a different footprint for this application.

(If you’ve been following along, you’ll know this wasn’t the subject I initially planned).


Rob Campbell

I’m a consulting engineer with a love for the technical discipline of precision engineering and the interpersonal discipline of collaborative development.

Through my technical consulting, I help companies whose products depend on precision motion or optics for success, to achieve breakthrough levels of performance.

And I help engineers and designers enhance their own expertise and solve their precision engineering challenges by writing and teaching about precision machine design and opto-mechanical engineering.