Mechanical Engineer Interview Questions

37 Questions and Answers by

Jason is a freelance mechanical engineer specializing in 3D Printing and CNC Machining.

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

Question 1 of 37

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

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List of 37 Mechanical Engineer Interview Questions & Answers

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  1. 1.

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

  2. 2.

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

  3. 3.

    What interests you about working for our company?

  4. 4.

    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?

  5. 5.

    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?

  6. 6.

    What types of manufacturing technologies have you worked with?

  7. 7.

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

  8. 8.

    What is the difference between stainless steel and tool steel?

  9. 9.

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

  10. 10.

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

  11. 11.

    What is your 'shop' experience?

  12. 12.

    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?

  13. 13.

    How are LEGO bricks made?

  14. 14.

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

  15. 15.

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

  16. 16.

    What is the difference between static friction and kinetic friction?

  17. 17.

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

  18. 18.

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

  19. 19.

    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?

  20. 20.

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

  21. 21.

    Why did you become a mechanical engineer?

  22. 22.

    How would you describe your communication style?

  23. 23.

    What are the phases of the Carnot cycle?

  24. 24.

    What do you know about our company?

  25. 25.

    What is your ideal work environment?

  26. 26.

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

  27. 27.

    What does 'circularity' refer to?

  28. 28.

    What is the 'Young's Modulus' of a material?

  29. 29.

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

  30. 30.

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

  31. 31.

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

  32. 32.

    What does 'draft' refer to in Injection Molding?

  33. 33.

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

  34. 34.

    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?

  35. 35.

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

  36. 36.

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

  37. 37.

    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?