What to Pack when Going on Engineer’s Hike

Engineers 2014 hike

Engineers 2014 hike

Packing for the annual engineer’s  hike is generally weather dependent, but here are some basics. But first, you’ll need one good backpack. Choose one from Rangermade’s best day backpack for hiking page. Then you’ll need these:

  •     Hiking Boots – nothing fancy, but something with some ankle support and treated for water repellency.
  •     Rain Gear – Think you don’t need it? Remember, this is New England.
  •     Fleece/Wool Sweater.
  •     Wool/Capilene/Coolmax Socks – no cotton.
  •     Nylon Pants/Shorts.
  •     Coolmax/Capilene/Polypro Shirt/Underwear.
  •     Hat, Gloves – for cold weather.
  •     Sunglasses.
  •     Hat for sun protection.
  •     Sunscreeen.
  •     Bug Spray.
  •     Lunch – nothing perishable, and no glass bottles.
  •     Snacks – granola bars, chocolate, oranges/apples, etc.
  •     Small Flashlight.
  •     Small First Aide Kit.
  •     WATER – at least 2 quarts, probably more depending on the hike.

Cotton Clothing? Why not?

Here’s the deal on cotton clothing.  While it does breathe very well, once it gets wet, it stays wet.  This isn’t really a big deal when you are hiking on a hot day.  But if the weather gets chilly (like when you hike to the top of a mountain) and you are wet, you will get cold very fast – much faster than if you were wearing clothing that pulls moisture away from your body. When you are wearing cotton, and get wet, due to sweat or precipitation, the wet cotton sucks heat from your body. When this happens, your body works overtime to keep warm.  When this happens, there is less energy available for basic functions such as walking.  When this happens, you run a vastly increased risk of getting injured.  That’s a bad time.  So, do everyone a favor – try to avoid cotton clothing on even mildly cool days.


Engineering a boot sole for a specific purpose

1. Here’s the problem: how do you engineer a boot sole that does the following:

allows for short or long hikes, hiking, 3 seasons

outdoor sports
sustain moderate backpack weights
2. techniques for building performance:

Nubuck leather

-the outside of the boot, which makes direct contact with outer surfaces and varying air pressure is nubuck, a quality leather treated to repel corrosive agents, for lightness and wear resistance in time

-the nubuck is added a ballistic nylon layer, which is a kind of material used in the manufacture of bulletproof jackets

Gore-Tex Membrane

- the membrane that waterproofs the boot’s leather

-This membrane also has the aim of making the boots breathable, so the skin will retain sweat, because the Gore-Tex membrane evaporates water


Vibram boot sole layers-outsole that makes contact with the ground is exactly what we said earlier, “the insurance policy” on slippery, dangerous  ground.

Compare this to the Vibram variants used in these military winter boots, perhaps the best snow boots available http://www.rangermade.us/best-military-winter-boots/

Orthotic Pro

-cushions for the heel that support the weight of the skeleton and absorb the shock of the movement

-the terrains you walk on can vary, and so do the shocks that the foot bones need to absorb: rock, grass, dirt, these pillows uniform the shock exerted on you by nature

Toron ® Resource

-the weight of the rucksack puts additional pressure on the leg, that’s why this technology has been added to provide extra-toes comfort through soft pillows

-the heel is a key point of pressure, and it has this kind of pillows

Cradle technology

-Revolutionary technology that envelops the ankle to protect it from pressure, bruises and sprains


-insole made from 80% recycled material, most environmentalists among us definitely appreciate this

-It’s a very soft sole, very flexible, for a comfortable walk that does not tire the foot


-manufacturing techniques designed to make the finished product a natural extension of the leg

-for the success of this technology, over 900 men and women participated in a survey where they were measured:
  • the weight pressing on the foot during walking
  • the height of the foot
  • width of the foot



Mechatronic products. Where do we find them?

Black and Yellow Robotic ArmMechatronic systems

Among the mechatronic products we commonly use are printers, new generation copiers, sewing and knitting machines with numerical control, the electrically controlled internal combustion engine, anti-theft systems, anti-skid systems (ABS), air cushions in the auto technology, robots and handlers, medical equipment, including high-tech prostheses.

Also mechatronic products are the miniature video cameras, compact photo cameras (read some good compact camera reviews at http://maxcnash.com, to get an idea of how complex these little devices have gotten nowadays), CD players and other micro machines, but also the large agricultural and street cleaning machines, large gauge systems and automated production lines.

Car makers create increasingly complex mechatronic vehicles equipped with complicated execution systems, programmed and controlled by computer.

Currently, the most advanced mechatronic system in the world is the system that ensures the closing and opening of the access channel to the port of Rotterdam, its elements having a length of over 300 m.

Mechatronic equipments are assemblies that integrate simple or complex components which fulfil different functions, acting based on fixed rules. Their main task is mechanical operation, in other words the production of useful work, and their essence is to be able to react intelligently, through a system of sensors, to external stimuli that act upon the system, taking the proper decisions in every situation.

The characteristic features of Mechatronic equipments are the following:

  • Multifunctioning, meaning the ability to achieve different technological processes, for example by changing the program;
  • Intelligence, representing the machine’s ability to communicate with the environment and make decisions;
  • Flexibility, meaning the machine’s structure can change without major difficuly in the different stages of design, production or operation, for instance by using modular construction;
  • Can be conducted from a distance, which in turn requires the knowledge and use of complex communication interfaces;
  • Permanent evolution, due to the dynamics of market requirements and technological possibilities of execution.

An important aspect of mechatronics is that mechatronic machinery are example of mimesis of nature.

The main characteristic of Mechatronic machinery is the ability to constantly adapt to external conditions and to give information (in the form of mechanical, electrical, optical, pneumatic, etc.) through a high level of automation.

Mechatronic systems are equipped with sensors and transducers which receive signals from the environment, with programmed processing and interpretation of these signals and communication devices, as well as with elements of execution that act according to the environment.


The Subject Matter of Mechatronics

MechatronicsThe term “Mechatronics” has been used for the first time in 1975 by the Japanese company Yaskawa Electric Corporation, being an abbreviation of the words mechanics, electronics and computer science.

At the beginning Mechatronics was seen as a complement to precision mechanics, the photo camera with Flash being a classic example of Mechatronics application.

In time, the notion of Mechatronics changed its meaning and expanded the scope of its definition: Mechatronics became the Engineering Science based on the classical disciplines of machinery construction, electrical engineering, electronics and computer science. The purpose of this study is to improve the functionality of machines and technical systems by merging component disciplines into a unified whole.

However, Mechatronics is not the same thing as automatic or automated production. These are terms that arose outside the field of MECHATRONICS, but are also included in it. Mechatronics can be defined as an innovative concept of automation techniques for the needs of engineering and education.

Mechatronics was born as technology and became a philosophy that spread around the world. In the last years, Mechatronics came to be defined simply: the science of intelligent machines.

As a conclusion, it can be said that Mechatronics is a field of interdisciplinary science and technology that deals with the general issues of mechanics, electronics and computer science. However, it includes several areas that form the basis of mecatronics, which cover many well-known disciplines, such as: electrical engineering, power engineering, encryption technique, the technique of information microprocessing and others.