Here are two aspects of machine design from the industrial engineers I learn a lot of Spanish vocabulary from.

One thing that is unique about Taller Leñateros is that, although it is an artisan papermaking and bookbinding guild… when you need to make thousands of the same design by hand, it helps to insure dimensional quality by the use of machinery and tools.

In the first photo is Petra, Arely and Pepe at CECATI, using AutoCAD to design a compressor mold out of stainless steel and cast iron. Part of the difficulty lies in the fact that San Cristobal is not a particularly industrial center, so materials may have to arrive from Tuxtla, or even the capital.

In the second photo is a project undertaken by Paulina, Javier and Diego. It is a pedal-powered mill, designed to mash banana cortex, coconut palm, and other rougher fibers that normally require one day of pre-soaking before maceration. Since we are going ecological and trying to eliminate plastic bags and as much electric power as possible, this is one innovation that won’t consume electric power.  Still. Even with all the gears, it is not easy to operate and takes quite a bit of muscle.

Spanish Words of the Day, everyday things: “cinta canela” packing tape | “cinta masking” masking tape | “jurex” scotch tape | “pegamento, corla” glue | “cuter” box cutter | “boli, lapicera, pluma, portamina” pen | “cerradura de sobreponer” superimposed padlock | “auxiliares” aids, assistants