Friday, March 30, 2007

César Chávez Day

It's a Holiday here in the UC system. Cesar Chavez, civil rights activist and hero for farm workers in America was born today (actually tomorrow the 31st). Being an Ag school in California, we can't help but recognize and appreciate the struggles of those who toil in the fields everyday helping make the food we eat which sustains us all. This man was truly one of the finest Americans we've ever had.

more info about Cesar Chavez and his life here:

Hug a farmer today, and remember Cesar Chavez.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

UNLV Steel Bridge

PSWRC Dark Horse of 2007?

"For 2007, the experience gained from last year has brought the same team together once again. We have one goal in mind, to win the regional competition and make it to the national competition for the first time in school history."

Beautiful website, how pretty's the Bridge? Go Runnin' Rebels!

2006 Effort: 4th Place PSWRC at UCLA. The SoCal powers that be may wanna take a look at this Team.

2007 Tex-Mex Conference Pics

The University of Houston has got some 2007 Tex-Mex Regional Photos up:

Bison Preppin' Up for the Main Event

Word from Bisonville:

Thanks to MSU - Mankato for putting on a great competition. These things take a huge amount of work to organize, and the Mavericks were up to the task. The facilities were perfect, and the conference was both interesting and informative. This year will surely serve as a model as we look forward to hosting the Mid-West regional in 2009.

The Bison bridge team went into Mankato with high hopes this year. Fabrication hours were leaps and bounds above previous years and there was no choice but to make it pay off. The nine team region improves every year, but the extra hours were well worth it.

Though they won't be "cruisin' down the 101", the NDSU Steel Bridge Team is headed to Northridge, California May 25-26 to take on the best of the best at the national steel bridge competition. For the fifth straight year the Bison have taken home top honors in the Mid-West region. It's time to take a few weeks off and then get back to the practice. A few minor changes to the construction sequence are in the mix and then to eliminate the penalties and sticky bolts. As the remainder of the 18 regional competitions take place, and more victors are granted invitation to Cali, it's shaping up to be some stiff competition yet again. Best of luck to everybody, we'll see you in Northridge.

Great job Bison!

Welding and Final Assembly

Final Assembly is going down this weekend. Phil has to finish up some EME 151 stuff so he can graduate, so whatever welding we need done we have to coordinate with Daret, Bill and/or anybody else with a steady hand. There is also some shop stuff to take care of before we can do the final build.

Construction Crew - we need to set up the official course now that we have Bainer Grounds Crew permission. That will go down this Friday, 3/30. Jessica and Matt will go down to Hibbert to see if they can't find a big piece of decent plywood to do final layout, o/w we'll use the lab floor and modify accordingly.



Merrimack Gets a Local Write-Up

New England Champs Merrimack College talk about their Regional Victory:


Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Korean National SBT 2K8?

In 2003, the Mid-Pacific regional was held at Fresno State. During that season a visiting scholar from the Tokyo Institute of Technology, transported by Professor Chai, witnessed Mid-Pac '03, and especially liked the steel bridge competition. Upon return to Japan, he started up a Japanese regional competiton involving the four major engineering universities there. Today, they host a Japanese National Student Steel Bridge Competition (JNSSBC) and the winner gets to fly across to the U.S. to compete at an American regional. The Japanese winner has typically competed in the Mid-Pacific Regional since 2004. As Mid-Pac '06 in Berkeley was held during the finals for Tokyo Institute of Technology's finals schedule (2006 Japanese Nat. Champion), they flew all the way out to New Jersey to compete in the Metropolitan last season.

Since "TIT" (yeah, it's an old joke here though) has typically won Japanese Nationals, from experience we can definitely say they are of great spirit and always produce a quality bridge.

It seems that their Korean neighbors may want to follow suit. We've been approached by yet another visiting scholar, Sok Hwan Choi, from South Korea working with Professor Bolander. He is interested in learning the basics of the SSBC and taking back the information to his homeland. Matt will fill him in and hopefully get the South Koreans in the mix before too long.

한국 강철 교량 팀 !

Tokyo Institute of Technology Design Poster at the Wolfpack Mid-Pac, Reno, NV, April 2004.

"TIT" finishes assembly run at the Big Sac Mid-Pac, April 2005.

First Word from Deep South Regional...

One Observer noted the following from Ruston last weekend:

"I was there. ASU took first, MSU second, LSU third, but ASU missed the business meeting so the word is that ASU is not going to nationals, Giving LSU a chance to redeem themselves. ASU had a pretty light bridge and a fast construction time. LSU had the most efficient design and MSU got stiffest, but their weight was up there."

Don't be missing those meetings (or completing that Mead Paper) everybody, remember that Regionals isn't just about qualifying, it's about being a part of your regional ASCE community. Participate and have fun!

Official placements can be found here:

LSU will rise above!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Minnesota State SBT featured in article

Read it here: Mavs gettin' it done.

Buckeyes are Hosting and Goin' Deep!

The Ohio Valley will be hosted by Ohio State this year. Word here is that the Buckeyes are aiming for a fast, light stiffy! Looks like a well balanced bridge, should put up good structual numbers, but how fast will they be? Youngstown has their work cut out for them again.

Upon UF Request...

UF SBT Captain Beery requested that this post be removed to respect Coach Meyer's Privacy.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Gators Gearing Up...

Now that the Florida Gators have passed again into the final four by beating the Big O Ducks, we can surely expect that the UF Bridge Crew will come fully prepared to kick arse in Knoxville. The Southeast is set to fire this weekend, March 29 - March 31 at the University of Tennessee.

No word from the Deep South. Did Louisiana State rebound after the disappointment in SLC? Did Arkansas State give them a run for their money? Did another southern juggernaut step up and grab the baton (Rouge). Who knows? Anybody go to Ruston last weekend, email

Gator Write Up Here:

Great quote by Captain Beery, “It’s difficult trying to balance school with working on a project,” said Beery, whose Facebook profile indicates that he is “in a relationship with Steel Bridge.”

Can't help but notice that the Gators may be in line for the 2007 Sausage Factory Award ;)

Sunday, March 25, 2007

New England Pics on el Zippo

UConn was kind enough to put a little zip file of all the Northeast/New England conference steel bridge pics.

Get 'em hither:

NE Steel Bridge Pics

Great job hosting Huskies!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Badgers loading up YouTube

Wisconsinites have got a bunch of new stuff from their 2002-2003 2nd Place NSSBC campaign on YouTube, some good memories there I'm sure.

Bucky Bridge Fabrication:
Part 1 - at Endres
Part 2 - at Endres some more
Part 3 - finishing up at Endres 2003

Monday, March 19, 2007

Portland State Viks ready to rock in Ska!

Them PSU Viks are getting themselves all set for the 2007 Pacific Northwest Regional Conference in Fairbanks, AK. Looks like a nice deep space truss design. Should do well. Get fast Viks! Matt would love to see his hometown University earn a trip down to Northridge.

University of Akron Fabrication

The University of Akron Zips have some of there 2006-2007 Fabrication pictures up, ohhhh, that lovely lathe, a Steel Bridgers best friend for lightness (that and ultra thin walled tubing).

Write-up about Lakehead's Mankato performance.

Thunderwolves get a little bit of press from the net news ledger.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

New England Scores are in

Hey y'all,

Word in from Storrs, looks like Merrimack, MIT (FINALLY!), and UConn get the nod for Northridge. Great job UConn for putting up the biggest NE Steel Bridge Regional yet!

Final Competition Scores:

Merrimack $3,945,833 (Northridge bound)

MIT $4,012,500 (Northridge bound)

UConn $4,047,917 (Northridge bound)

Laval $4,057,500

Vermont $6,120,000

Northeastern $6,704,167

Maine $8,633,750

Tufts $12,266,250

Wentworth $13,001,250

UMass-Amherst $45,051,667

New Hampshire $82,725,000

Saturday, March 17, 2007

The Ministers of General Bloody Mayhem

'Tis a beautiful St. Patrick's Day here in Davis: completely clear skies, and about 80 degrees. Whether it be Draught or Naught, it's all flowing like a geyser, and everybody is jiggin' to the festivities of this town caught on fire with the cheer and friendship of the day. And so, to highlight this most happiest of happy days (other than the fact that some people have finals only to be welcomed by a 4 day spring break) here in California Aggieland we take you to the humble beginnings of the completely fresh faced Chrome Crew and their assembling adventures with the 2005 Bridge.

Friday, March 16, 2007


OT Doves are done. Great job Phil! Now to the rest of the OT slips, and then to welding all the OT together. Woo Hoo! Saturday fabrication will consist of welding and some various brainstorming. Chrome Crew is encouraged to come out and stay hot this weekend. 1'-50" is calling!!!

University of Texas, Arlington

The UTA Mavericks got some pics up of their bridge from the Tex-Mex Regional in Lubbock.

Black Beer Weekend

Hey y'all,

First of all, don't forget to wear green tomorrow 'cause that's all they wear in Ireland don't you know: bright green tweed coats and derby hats.

On a more realistic note, Phil should be wrapping up most of the OT doves today, he says they're so damn good he's beside himself. Saturday we'll get some welding going on. Speaking of welding, Daret's almost done with all the side welds on the DK's, so we'll have a DK before we know it.

Good luck with finals and our awesome spring break of bridge fabrication!!!

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Get Lucky Today

May the Luck O' The Irish be with you this weekend! New England is on the slate to compete. For Boston!

Pint of the black stuff landlord!

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Thur/Fri before St. Paddy's

Philthy Phil is done. Says the final presentation went real well. He'll be working in the shop for all of Thursday and Friday. All are encouraged (provided you have no finals) to come out and assist in the shop or on the welding table. Got to get this thing done by April 1st.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Blasts From the Past

Does anybody still remember when it used to be nothing but beams?

Some rules of the day: minimum weight of bridge was set at 100 lbs., minimum deflection was set at 1.0", the first year a barge was assigned that could work in the river, people were constructing at insane speeds, beams had to have serious style to set themselves apart, and Sac State still had the hippy and the fat man running their team for the 6th straight year.

Runs from the 2003 NSSBC at San Diego State University's Cox Arena.

University of Michigan (2K3 National Champs)
Thanks to Michigan's Frank Duff for the video. Go Blue!

University of Wisconsin, Madison (2nd Place 2K3)

The Badgers had been consistently practicing under 1 minute that year, just missed the NSSBC Championship by about 3 sec. That's how close it was in 2003.

University of Florida (3rd Place 2K3)

Naaa na na na na,
Go Gators!

Mankato Free Press write up on MW Conference

FYI, the Bison confirmed the rankings, NDSU in first, Lakehead in second, and the Golden Gophers in third. Fargo Bison and the Thunder Bay Thunderwolves qualify for Northridge.

Here's a local newspaper writeup.
Great effort by Minnesota, but it's tough when you have 2 of the defending top 5 teams in the NSSBC competing in your conference. That bridge would definitely fly in a lot of other conferences.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Picnic Day

A tradition as long as anyone in Davis can remember, Picnic Day unites the entire Davis community, UC Davis students and alumni along with a good portion of the Sacramento area with a day long extravaganza of just about anything you can imagine...including, Steel Bridge pratice (and beer). Here are a few vids of the 2006 Team working hard in the early morning of Picnic Day 2006, which was April 22.


This is usually the first big performance of the Chrome Crew's competition season. At times during peak hours, we'll get 100 to 200 people packed in tight around the steps of Bainer Hall to eyeball the Ags' construction prowess. Big ovations to follow right everybody?

Got Communication Chrome O?

Part 1

Part 2

(it is noteworthy that Jen did a pretty good job filling in for Noah that day.)

UBC gettin' in the Mix.

The University of British Columbia.

If you look closely, you'll see Matt working the handycam right in front of the Thunderbirds. This was at the 2006 PNWRC in Lacey, WA hosted by St. Martin's University. UBC also has a really good ultimate frisbee team, that's big news here in Davis.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Penguins Reelin' In The Years

Youngstown State has uploaded some 2004 and 2006 film. Enjoy!



(diggin' the Lowrider soundtrack)

Now, when are the Penguins going to return the trip that the Aggies made to the Ice Castle last season?

Good luck to YSU in the Ohio Valley this season. To be hosted by The Ohio State University.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Midwest, Again, has Plenty of Quality

From our Eyes and Ears in the World of SBT, Matt reports:

Early in the Mankato chill, Midwestern SBT's gathered in the Myers Field House on the Minnesota State campus to put 7 months of design, planning, and fabrication to the test at the 2007 Midwest Regional ASCE/AISC Steel Bridge Competition. The clear favorite going in had to be the defending NSSBC champs North Dakota State. They did not disappoint, as the Bison were light, quick on their feet, and put in a good time. The bridge performed very well under load, and I believe they've again
mastered the Midwest.

1st Efficiency
NDSU Bison

1st Lightness
NDSU Bison

1st Stiffness
Iowa Hawkeyes

1st Speed
Lakehead Thunderwolves

1st Economy
Lakehead Thunderwolves

Iowa State Cyclones


1. North Dakota State University Bison

2. Lakehead University Thunderwolves
3. University of Minnesota Golden Gophers
4. Minnesota State University, Mankato Mavericks
5. Iowa State University Cyclones
6. South Dakota State University Jackrabbits
7. University of Wisconsin, Platteville Pioneers
8. University of Iowa Hawkeyes
9. University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux

*As is custom of this blog, nothing will be posted not already posted on the internet or sent directly to Specifics are for those who were there. Any inquiries about a SBT's performance should be addressed directly to the respective captains. note: try not to pretend to be somebody else, it's stupid, oh yeah, muy estupido, or as Mencia would say, "deeit de da." ;-p

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Aggie Seismic takes 3rd in Burbank

2006 Chrome Ollie members Tomonori Mori and Gerardo Rocha along with Winnie Leung and Rusian Novik help lead the 2007 UC Davis Seismic Design Competition entry. Third Place Overall! Way to go Aggie SDT!

1. Oregon State
2. San Jo ("You Know!")
3. UC Davis Aggies!

More Information on the 2007 SDC can be found here:

Steven's Tech Doc from 2005

Some of you may have already seen this, but it's worth another look. Stevens Tech of the Metropolitan conference did a nice ride along documentary of their trip to Orlando for the 2005 NSSBC.

Can't help but laugh when the fella is swiggin' the cerveza while working the drill. The drunk GT professor was also a highlight. UC Davis Steel Bridge All-Star Jen Walley gets the on camera quote. "43 members, 86 dovetails, and 26 bolts".....ahhhh, those were the days before all these rules started to shackle creativity. Ha! (It was 45 wasn't it?)

High Pressure Water Cutting Possibility

Sierra Manufacturing Inc. in Chico may hook us up with some Waterjet cutting. Style prepare to be upgraded.

Pour Day help

Hey y'all,

Canoe is looking to pour this Sunday. Having additional hands present may help the process.

From Bridgeland:

Still tiggin' the DK's, warping is becoming an issue, so we may need to modify the weld sequence for Side A. Also, Matt scarred the S#@! out of one of the straight DK doves on Side B trying to force it out (did not check for warping first), it will have to be replaced with one of the spares. Aside from that, Side B is almost completely done. OT Dove production will money cut on Friday 3/9. Jessica finished the 32 deg. CD extensions for CD 2/5. DK Slips are done.

Still have: 45 deg. pier bases (w/ holes), and OT Slips to fab.

Matt will travel to Minneapolis/Mankato this weekend, and is taking the camera with him. Debating the trip to see the SE in Knoxville at the moment. When's Picnic Day again?

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

UConn set for the New England!

The Huskies got their bridge set to roll for the New England Regional. Looks like they may be California Beamin' if they put up a time worthy of Byaaaaaah!

Monday, March 05, 2007


Matt's SONY is functional again thanks to the men and women of SONY reparir in Laredo, TX. We're back in business on film, so construction team, after this weekend get ready to watch yoself!


Sunday, March 04, 2007

Chrome Crew Attitude

We are going to yell this at least 5 times during a run. Byaaaaaaaaaaah!


Good job today y'all. The faster the beam (or half beam? eh) comes out, the faster we can finish the rest. Keep the speed intensity high, and remember that it's always worth it to take those few extra seconds than drop a nut and/or bolt. Don't rush, keep the hands steady, and move quickly but surely from staging to site.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Steel Bridge for Dummies

For any newcomers out there, here's a good rough guide on getting your steel bridge completed with some decent accuracy this season. A lot of common violations are described here in some detail. This site is a great way to check yourself so that you don't make some common mistakes. Thanks to Dr. Quimby and the gang for putting up this site.