On Top of the World (Wednesday, May 10)

Now for our second company visit, we took a small bus trip (nap trip) to Denklingen, which is south of Augsburg, to visit Hirschvogel. Hirschvogel does forging, both hot, warm, and cold, of parts for the automotive industry. The plant we visited was very vast and included a large variety of forging technologies. We started by seeing a very automated forging line that included KUKA robots and little to no human interaction. But then in contrast, we saw the stereotypical forging line where there were men putting metal into a press and then pressing a foot pedal to activate the press and repeating. The production lines ranged from those with high automation to no automation and everything in between. This is all dependent on the part being produced and the quantity needed. Although I don’t see myself doing this, I think it would be interesting to design the automated process of which a particular part is produced so it can be produced most efficiently.

After the factory tour, we got back on the bus and went even more south to Oberammergau, which is a small town in the Bavarian Alps. We had some free time to explore and do some souvenir shopping. During this time, I finally got my longed-for gelato, which was delicious and cheap, or deliciously cheap as one would say, only one euro for a scoop of deliciousness. This was a pretty picturesque town and something that you imagine to be in southern Germany. Anywhere you look, you would find some of the beautiful Alps. We took a short bus ride to the base of a mountain where took a cable car to the top. This might have been one of the most beautiful views I have ever seen. 360 degrees of Bavarian and Austrian Alps and it was perfect. There was even a café at the summit and a viewing deck.

Leaving Oberammergau for Augsburg consisted of a long bus ride that was full of napping people. Dinner was by ourselves and we chose to go back to Zeughausstuben again to try our own choices from the menu. I went with the beef rolls and a pretzel of course. The rolls were very filling, but also quite tasty and the pretzel was delicious of course. I have been enjoying the local cuisine for the most part and all of the traditional restaurants. This was also where I learned that for most restaurants, the bathroom is downstairs. So, if I ever had to go, I just had to look for stairs.


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