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Industrial Machinery Mechanics


Before 1750 and the beginning of the Industrial Revolution in Europe, almost all work was done by hand. Families grew their own food, wove their own cloth, and bought or traded very little. Gradually the economic landscape changed. Factories mass-produced products that had once been created by hand. The spinning jenny, a multiple-spindle machine for spinning wool or cotton, was one of the first machines of the Industrial Revolution. After it came a long procession of inventions and developments, including the steam engine, power loom, cotton gin, steamboat, locomotive, telegraph, and Bessemer converter. With these machines came the need for people who could maintain and repair them.

Mechanics learned that all machines are based on six configurations: the lever, the wheel and axle, the pulley, the inclined plane, the wedge, and the screw. By combining these elements in more complex ways, the machines could do more work in less time than people or animals could do. Thus, the role of machinery mechanics became vital in keeping production lines running and businesses profitable.

The Industrial Revolution continues even today, although now it is known as the age of automation. As machines become more numerous and more complex, the work of the industrial machinery mechanic becomes even more necessary.

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