Jugaad is a colloquial Hindi-Urdu word that can mean an innovative fix or a simple workaround, used for solutions that bend rules, or a resource that can be used as such. Jugaad can also denote a person who can solve a complicated issue.
Here is a video of Jugaad technology put to use mainly in India and in a few other countries. I am proud to say that the majority of Indians can boast of such innovations.
An antidote for anyone who despairs at the loss of innocence. How sweet it is to think that there’s a shed in the Malvern hills in which a dedicated bunch of artisans is hard at work hand-building sports cars with wooden chassis. What’s more, with the Aero 8 and forthcoming hybrid LifeCar, it looks like they’re here to stay.
This aroused my curiosity about wooden cars.
The Morgan Motor Company, is a family owned British motor car manufacturing firm founded in 1909 by Henry Frederick Stanley Morgan that specializes in hand-assembled cars. The company, based in the Malvern hills, an area of Malvern, Worcestershire, England to the north and east of Great Malvern employs around 163 people. In 2007, Morgan produced 640 hand-assembled cars.
In their FAQs page to the question “Is it still made with a Wooden chassis?” they answer:
“The Morgan car has always been built around an ash-frame , and a steel chassis. The new Aero 8 also has an ash frame. This gives unique strength, flexibility and surprisingly, research showed that the frame made the car safer on impact tests.”
A year ago, in May 2013, I came across a news item in the media about Istvan Puskas, a 51-year-old Hungarian farmer. He lives in Tiszaörs, a village in Jász-Nagykun-Szolnok county, in the Northern Great Plain region of central Hungary.
Farmer Istvan Puskas, is also skilled in woodcraft. He loves to create unique articles with wood that would interest people.
A year earlier, in 2012, he created a unique motorcycle entirely of wood. a one-of-a-kind chopper made almost exclusively out of wood.
In 2013, Puskas created a unique wooden vehicle powered by a Polish-made Fiat 126 engine. The vehicle resembles a tractor.
Though a steering wheel salvaged from an old Mercedes-Benz came in handy, he made the frame, wheels, axles, suspension and gearbox out of wood. He used an old beer barrel for the fuel tank. His object was to use as much wood as possible.
It took him four months to finish building his vehicle.
Even though the current Hungarian laws make it impossible for Istvan Puskas to officially register and drive his unique wooden vehicle on the road, the local policemen impressed with his efforts allow him to drive it on the local lanes in his village. So far, touch wood, he has not run into any accidents.
Since Istvan had no garage to park his wooden vehicle, he had plans to put his creation on the market, as a collector’s item, or as a vehicle for someone who prefers to drive slow. He said that he intends to use the proceeds to fund his next project – a three-wheeled vehicle.
Recently, I came across the following video on YouTube of an amazing, beautiful custom-built 2009 wooden car Uploaded on October 13, 2010 by mrantisocialguy.
This custom hand-built wooden car mounted on a 1986 Toyota truck frame is powered by a Chrysler 318 engine. Driven by an automatic transmission it had 1,800 miles registered on its speedometer at the time of shooting this video.
The following video titled “wooden car Amazing Invention – HD” uploaded by Mohammed Rashed Ul Haq on Jan 13, 2011 is a four-minute long documentary on the manufacture of a wooden car.
Today, I read an article in the Deccan Chronicle, Chennai edition, titled “Wooden car awaits licence“.
Appar Lakshmanan, a hereditary master wood craftsman belonging to the Viswakarma community, has built a wooden car, which is probably the first eco-friendly vehicle made in the state of Tamilnadu, India.
Like Istvan Puskas in Hungary, Appar Lakshmanan too finds it difficult to meet the high criteria set by the Regional Transport Officer (RTO), Chennai.
The writer of the article J.V. Siva Prasanna Kumar quotes Appar Lakshmanan as saying:
“If its strength of materials and ability to withstand combustion in the event of an accident or collision, then test my car and see the results… The officials seem to raise several questions, including how the wooden frames were fixed together. My father used bamboo pegs as rivets and they stood the test of time. Would anyone believe that?”
Appar Lakshmanan says the wood he used to make the car was not inflammable. Nevertheless, his efforts to convince the RTO authorities and obtain a licence did not yield the desired results. The one among his woes is that he could not get an engine or chassis number for his wooden car. A real paradox indeed!
“Alfredo Moser has changed the lives of a tremendous number of people, I think forever. Whether or not he gets the Nobel Prize, we want him to know that there are a great number of people who admire what he is doing.” – Illac Angelo Diaz, MyShelter Foundation, Philippines.
The creative mind of Alfredo Moser, a Brazilian mechanic, came up with a cheap way to illuminate his house during the day without using electricity. His “Lamp Moser” is just a plastic bottle filled with water and a little amount of bleach, added to prevent the growth of algae.
Alfredo Moser lives in Uberaba, a city in the west of the state of Minas Gerais in Brazil. In 2002, there were frequent power outages in his home city. While talking to the media Moser said: “The only places that had energy were the factories, not people’s houses.”
During the power outages, Moser and his friends were discussing a hypothetical situation of a small plane coming down and the survivors had no matches to light a fire to signal the rescuers. Moser’s boss suggested filling a discarded plastic bottle with water and using it as a lens to focus the sun’s rays on dry grass to start a fire.
This simple idea germinated in Moser’s mind and motivated him to develop the “Lamp Moser” – a cheap source of indoor lighting during the day. The lamp has an intensity around 60 watts.
Moser installed the bottle lamps in his house and in the houses of his neighbours and also in the local supermarket.
Though he does earn a few dollars installing his creation, it has not made him wealthy, but has given him a great sense of pride. He still lives in his simple house and drives his old 1974 car.
In the Philippines, where electricity is relatively expensive, a quarter of the population lives below the poverty line. Alfred Moser’s idea of the refracted-light bottle lamps have been installed in more than 200,000 homes and benefitted more than a million people.
Illac Angelo Diaz is the executive director of the MyShelter Foundation in the Philippines that specializes in the use of sustainable or recycled materials such as bamboo, tyre, paper, and discarded plastic bottles as alternative construction materials. They built walls with plastic bottles filled with mud and windows with bottles filled with water.
Diaz came to know about Alfredo Moser and admired the simple principle embodied in the refracted light lamps that provide indoor lighting during the daytime.
In June 2011, MyShelter started making the refracted-light bottle lamps, following the Moser method. Diaz says that one can find Moser lamps, even on remote island communities in the Philippines. He adds that the light provided by the refracted-light bottle lamps help people in poor areas to grow food on small hydroponic farms.
The Foundation now trains people to fabricate and install the refracted-light bottle lamps to earn a small income.
The idea has also caught on in about 15 other countries, from India and Bangladesh, to Tanzania, Argentina and Fiji.
Indian inventions and discoveries have been instrumental in shaping the face of the current modern world. We picked up 20 such interesting findings out of a whole bunch that will make you go, “I didn’t know that”.
An Indian-American Teenage Girl’s Invention Could Charge Cell-phones in 20 Seconds
Thanks to an 18-year-old high-school student, Eesha Khare of Saratoga, California, USA, our wait for hours for a cellphone to charge may become a thing of the past. This Indian-American girl, specialising in nanochemistry, has invented a super-capacitor device that can potentially charge a cellphone in less than 20 seconds.
The Intel Foundation presented Esha Khare the Intel Foundation Young Scientist Award and $50,000 during the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair held in Phoenix, Arizona this week for inventing the tiny super-capacitor device that can pack lot more energy into a smaller space than traditional phone batteries. The gizmo fits inside mobile phone batteries, and can hold the charge for a longer period.
Eesha says that her invention could be employed not only to charge cellphone batteries, but also to power anything that uses rechargeable batteries. Right now, the “super-capacitor” charges a light-emitting diode (LED). However, she is now being besieged by offers from the electronic industry. Reports say that Google is now having preliminary exploratory talks with Eesha Khare.
Let us wish this teenager all success with her invention.