Mechanical Engineer Mock Interview

To help you prepare for your Mechanical Engineer interview, here are 37 interview questions and answer examples.

Mechanical Engineer was updated by on October 13th, 2020. Learn more here.

Question 1 of 37

You're asked to take the design for a load-bearing steel plate and create an aluminum design that can withstand the same load. What design considerations would you keep in mind?

"I know that aluminum has a Young's Modulus that is roughly one third that of steel, and is also roughly three times less dense. Due to the difference in strength between the two materials, the aluminum plate would need to be thicker in order to bear the same load. This may result in a more expensive part, especially to optimize thickness with higher strength alloys that are more energy-intensive to produce. I also know that aluminum is difficult to weld when compared to steel, so I would use fasteners or rivets in the design unless welding was absolutely necessary."

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37 Mechanical Engineer Interview Questions & Answers

Below is a list of our Mechanical Engineer interview questions. Click on any interview question to view our answer advice and answer examples. You may view 25 answer examples before our paywall loads. Afterwards, you'll be asked to upgrade to view the rest of our answers.

  • 1. You're asked to take the design for a load-bearing steel plate and create an aluminum design that can withstand the same load. What design considerations would you keep in mind?

  • 2. What types of standard views do you include in a drawing for manufacture?

  • 3. What is the difference between an interference fit and a clearance fit, and when might you use them?

  • 4. Why are screws generally not ideal for location in fixture design? What is a better way to do it?

  • 5. In CAD Design, what is 'surface modeling,' and what makes it different from 'solid modeling?'

  • 6. What does 'parametric' refer with regards to 3D modeling software?

  • 7. What is the difference between 'top-down' and 'bottom-up' design?

  • 8. You're inspecting the surface of a machined steel plate to make sure it is within 0.005 inches of flatness across its surface. What does flatness refer to, and how do you measure it?

  • 9. What does 'circularity' refer to?

  • 10. What is the difference between stainless steel and tool steel?

  • 11. How would you define a simple machine? What is an example?

  • 12. What is the 'Young's Modulus' of a material?

  • 13. What does 'cold working' refer to? What effect does this have on a material's properties?

  • 14. What is the difference between an end-mill and a drill-bit?

  • 15. Why are sharp corners on internal geometry very difficult to machine?

  • 16. You're designing a machined cylindrical part that is 0.525 inches in diameter with a 1/4 -20 threaded hole in its center. What shop equipment would you most likely use to manufacture this?

  • 17. How are LEGO bricks made?

  • 18. What does 'draft' refer to in Injection Molding?

  • 19. If you were looking for defects in an injection molded part, what would you look for?

  • 20. How would you calculate the number of manholes in New York City?

  • 21. Where do you see yourself going in your career, and how will this role help you get there?

  • 22. What do you know about our company?

  • 23. What interests you about working for our company?

  • 24. What is your ideal work environment?

  • 25. Can you tell me about a project you've worked on?

  • 26. What types of manufacturing technologies have you worked with?

  • 27. What is your 'shop' experience?

  • 28. How would you describe your communication style?

  • 29. Why did you become a mechanical engineer?

  • 30. What is a free-body diagram? When would you use one?

  • 31. What are the phases of the Carnot cycle?

  • 32. What is a Factor of Safety (FoS), and when would you use it?

  • 33. What is the difference between static friction and kinetic friction?

  • 34. How would you calculate the maximum deflection of a cantilevered beam?

  • 35. You have a lever that must lift 50 pounds. The lever is 1 foot long with a fulcrum point 4 inches from the right side, which must supply the lifting force. How much force needs to be applied to the left-hand side? What mechanical advantage is this?

  • 36. A gear rotates at 5 rpm and interfaces with a smaller gear in a 10:1 ratio. How fast does the second gear spin? If the first gear applies 10N*m of torque, then what does the second gear experience?

  • 37. A force of 5 N compresses two identical springs in series by 10 cm. What will be the total distance that the same springs in parallel are compressed?