Hooniverse Asks: What type of automotive mechanics or engineering can you explain easily?

Certain things come easily to certain people. For some, understanding how things work is almost second nature. Engineers are really good at understanding how things work. They’re not always good at communicating to others how something works though, in a matter that’s easily understood. Friend of Hooniverse Jason Fenske is an example of someone who is good at understanding and communicating mechanical concepts. He does so on his great Engineering Explained YouTube channel. Another person who is pretty good at this is Hooniverse co-founder Tim Odell.

I, on the other hand, am capable of the communication part. Less so on the understanding part, which is kind of an important part of the puzzle. Still, I do look like to continually learn more about how my favorite machines do what they do. Currently, I’m looking to gain a better understanding of everything that goes into the operation of a transfer case. I was going to do research on this topic in an effort to bring back the Encyclopedia Hoonatica category. But then I remembered that was for more obscure concepts… and now I’m researching how many two-cylinder cars have been built. Stay tuned for that one.

For now, I’d like to hear about a mechanical concept that you understand well and can also communicate well to others. Let’s hear about it below.


  1. I got nuthin. I rely on people with far better visualization and organizational skills than me.

  2. The little wheel on top turns clockwise, making the big wheel underneath turn counterclockwise. This makes the car go forward. Reverse is the other way around. Simple!

    1. But if you were standing on the other side, the little wheel on top would turn counterclockwise to make the car move forward. How can it detect your position so it can decide which direction to turn?

        1. This is why I’m so happy I gave you a perfect score (and a chili pepper!) on Rate My Professor. Most of my other fake academic reviews are overly critical of my “friends” who drive boring cars.

    2. Do you have different compounds and diameters of little wheel to adjust for conditions?

  3. I can explain fasteners, suspension and basic internal combustion stuff. Automatic transmissions and ignition coils are magic.

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