Motion System Design

Fun with Fundamentals: Problem 244

Problem 244: Drawing a blank

You may need a fresh perspective to solve this mystery.

Miraculous Technologies Inc., a manufacturer of components for the aerospace and cotton candy industries, was against a deadline to finish their top project, the eagerly anticipated Rotorless Helicopter.

The design was so well guarded that Miraculous had its engineering staff divide the work among small, independent groups, each unaware of what the other was doing.

On the last day of work, all but one component was finished. A small but essential component: a spacer used in the gyroscopic modulator wheel assembly. The engineering manager had assigned this task to his deft, if slightly shaky design draftsman, Dizzy Duquesne. Due to Dizzy’s unrivaled drawing skill (showcased in his previous design for cotton candy paper cones), management trusted him to work on this part of the project alone.

Dizzy was darn near done drafting the design, when he leaned back in his chair to relax and admire his handiwork. As fate would have it, the lunch bell rang. Somewhat the nervous type, Dizzy jerked as if a bomb had gone off. His teetering chair tipped over, sending his head to the floor with a solid “smack.”

After the birds finished chirping, he climbed back into the traitorous chair and focused on the incomplete drawing before him. “Where was I?” he murmured. After scanning the drawing, it dawned on Dizzy that he didn’t have a clue as to what he had been driving at. The conk on the noggin had knocked it right out of him.

With no one else to turn to and the clock ticking, panic began to rise up. But, he gritted his teeth and steeled himself for the task at hand.

“Well, the top view and the front view are drawn…how hard can the side view be?” Dizzy soliloquized. What’s more, he saw in his previous notes that there are no holes in the design, nor any hidden lines. What is the missing side view?

Solution to problem 243, Trial and error, February 2001.