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Addressing Safety Issues Ahead of Eco-marathon

We are now officially into the single digits of days until the Shell Eco-marathon Americas competition in Houston, Texas! For the past three days we have continued to work very hard on our vehicles and are seeing some great changes as a result.

A lot of body work has been done on HotRod over the last few days. It seems as if when we think that we have filled in all of the small holes, we find a few more that need to be filled. We continue to prepare the vehicle for paint, which will be happening this weekend. As for the paint job, our team has decided on a paint scheme that is inspired by classic Hot Rod vehicles from the 1940’s and 1950’s. We have also cut out the window and the headlight lenses for HotRod. We will be applying both to their respectable positions in the next few days. Lastly, our team has also been addressing some safety issues for this vehicle. In particular, we have placed castle nuts with cotter pins on the spindles so that the wheels do not come loose off the spindle. We want to make sure that all of our vehicles are as safe as possible.

As for ThunderDawg, our team has been very productive for the past few days. We were previously having issues with our output shaft because we could not thread the bolt hole symmetric to the tapered shaft. But our team found a solution to this problem and fixed the engine’s output shaft. We have also installed magnets into the door as a method of closure instead of the usual hinge. The team has also installed the horn and a new CVP (Continuously Variable Planetry) transmission. Lastly, we have designed, modeled, and printed out our own mirror holders using our rapid prototyping machine.

Our team has also been finishing up preparing Roadster for the competition. Since the 2011 Shell Eco-marathon Competition, one of our headlight and mirror combinations had been broken, so our team made sure to repair that. You cannot even tell it had ever been messed up! Lastly, we have installed the windshield wiper on Roadster due to a new rule set in place by Shell that each Urban Concept vehicle must have a working windshield wiper. Roadster has been reassembled, cleaned up, and shined to a sparkling finish. With all of these aspects complete, Roadster is ready for its trip to Houston!

On Tuesday, March 20th, we had a team meeting where all of our members met to discuss the upcoming Shell Eco-marathon Competition and all of the logistics that come with it. For past members, we all realize that once we have this meeting, the competition is right around the corner and quickly approaching! With a week until competition, our team will be kicking it into high gear and completing these cars before we leave for Houston.