Picture of the day!-215

Remembrance Sunday

The 9th November was the day of the smart car rally as well as the Remembrance Sunday. The latter is held anually on the second Sunday in November “to commemorate the contribution of British and Commonwealth military and civilian servicemen and women in the two World Wars and later conflicts” [1] because the 11th November 1918 was the end of the hostilities in the First World War. The day is marked by ceremonies in most cities, towns and villages. At 11 am a two minutes silence is held and church bells are rung.

Picture of the day!-215Moment of silence at the smart car rally.


[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Remembrance_Sunday, visited 11.11.14

Picture of the day!-214

On the way to the Smart car rally, we drove through the New Forest. The sun was shining and created a mist due to the frozen ground. We were on time regarding the schedule but decided to stop and enjoy this beautiful moment.

Our iglidur®-car enjoys the beautiful New Forest.

So. Don’t rush through life. Stop and enjoy the moment!


The practical test: A trip around the world.

I have introduced the “iglidur® on tour” crew and schedule. Now it is time to tell why igus® sends its iglidur®-car around the world.

Der Praxistest Eine Reise um die Welt
The “iglidur® on tour” logo. The world inside a plain bearing with an arrow indicating “around the world”.


igus® offers the world’s broadest range of friction-optimized polymer bearings and has established itself as a reliable supplier of the automotive industry. Every second igus®-bearing is used in cars! Based on the 30th anniversary of iglidur® and igus® its 50th, igus® started this trip around the world to demonstrate the high performance. As I wrote before, our small car has been equipped with 56 iglidur®-bearings at various applications. Furthermore, igus® wants to unite its members by having all external offices involved in the tour. Therefore, it is a global project of the whole igus®-family. Last but not least, igus® donates one Euro per driven kilometer to organisations in the particular country.

Check the odometer on the website of the blog! The car has traveled quite a bit, hasn’t it?!


Let’s continue the tour. We are on the road!


The iglidur®-car

Some of you asked me questions about our small orange friend. Of course, it’s a member of our team and need to be introduced as well.Das iglidur®-Auto
This is our iglidur®-car in front of the Ars Electronica Center – Linz. 

Our iglidur®-car is a normal compact vehicle but we modified it. First of all, we painted it in orange and gave it the official igus® style. With the outside ready to shine, we focused onto the inner aspects. The Univerity of Applied Science of Cologne in cooperation with igus® employees and the German Technical Inspection Association (TÜV) had a closer look and dismantled the iglidur®-car. Based on the generel question “How can they be replaced best?”, a total of 56 igus® bearings were exchanged in the following areas:

  • Seat adjustment
  • Brake pedal
  • Gearshift
  • Hand brake
  • Window lifter
  • Convertible roof pivot points
  • Windscreen wiper mechanics
  • Throttle valves
  • Alternator

Das iglidur®-Auto.2
Transformation of the iglidur®-car (Arrow indicates bearing): Top left – Window lifter, Top right – Alternator, Bottom left – Hand brake, Bottom right – Gearshift

All in all, it travelled more than 50.000 km from Cologne around the world: India, China, South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, Brazil, Alaska and USA.

The iglidur®-car has seen quite a bit. 

Now it’s time to conquer Europe and the tour starts in Austria!

Let’s see what happens,



We already made in total more than 10.000km on conventional but also dirt roads, passing the Indian desert, seashores and stunning mountains. Of course, our bearings are still in a perfect shape. They are used to run much longer.
Now we have started in Korea where we are targeting at least 2000km more.


Although it is still cold, spring is coming. Everywhere on the way you can see this nice blooming trees.


We left from our branch in Incheon directly the day after I had arrived and headed towards Asan. As I am used to Chinese dimensions, I would say that Asan with its 290000 citizens is a nice and small village.


We have customers everywhere in the world. Thus, also in the small town of Asan. There we visited the company Leepack Co., Ltd. Leepack is the leading Korean company for intermittent rotary packaging systems. Their product portfolio ranges from filling units and vacuum packer to rotary fill and seal machines.
As their machines are dealing with groceries they need products that are in particular corrosion free. Igus® products are not only offering this but moreover have other advantages. Figure out what Mr. Lee Sangkun, vice president of Leepack, likes in particular…


…and also for how incredibly long they have been relying on igus®:


In Asan we also had dinner and I had the chance to enjoy real Korean barbecue. I love it. Basically it is a table full of meat, vegetables and fish with a grill in the center.


One of my new favourite dishes is kimchi. Kimchi is a traditional Korean side dish that is basically cabbage which is soaked in a salty brine. You can eat it with everything. I personally loved to put grilled meat on it.

It is a new experience for me that iglidur® is ready for driving when I arrive. This time everything went really without any problems. No sitting for two days in the customs office and no struggle to get a driving permission.

I expect everything to continue as smooth as it has begun. Igus® korea set up a shaman ceremony for the car. Thus, we are protected against any kind of bad luck.

To protect iglidur® on tour we prayed to several gods in both heaven and earth. Actually, to all gods that are controlling life on earth. To gain divine support we had to held a ceremony that is called “Gosa”. A typical “Gosa” ceremony consists of a memorial address by the ceremonial master, in form of country manager Ernie Kim, and a special table.


The table is laid out with various foods, such as fruits, dried fish, rice, and most important, a pig’s head. The pig head represents money and fertility. This idea originates from that pigs can breed up to 15 at a time and a Korean word that comes originally from China. The word “Don” means in Korean both pig and money.


To gain support of the gods, it is tradition to stick money in the ears and the mouth of the pig head.


Then you kneel down and bow to the table.


When the ritual is over, everyone eats and drinks together (also the pig head is part of the meal). In our case we even invited the neighborhood for joining us at the table.
After the ceremony a traditional band topped off the program.


With good protection we are now starting in the weekend. We will visit some nice places and sights.

I keep you guys up to date and will tell you more in the next blog post,

yours Sascha

Igus India says goodbye!

It is unbelievable how fast the time went by. The India tour is already over. It feels weird, after more than five weeks, to hear no one using the horn on streets. Guess one thing that will always be related to India for me 🙂

Of course, igus India organized a proper goodbye for iglidur®. One day before we handed over the car to customs we did a small closing event. Following you find some impressions we would like to share with you:

At the beginning, a traditional south Indian band welcomed iglidur® when the star of the evening went to its place in front of the igus team, guests and journalists.

Igus India says goodbye!

After a proper opening with a traditional dance show…

Igus India says goodbye!.2

…we began our program. First point, the manus winner. As it seems appropriate, we combined the closing of the tour with the manus awards.

Gold and one hundred thousand Rupees to late Mr. Harshwardhan Gupta. Tragically, Mr. Gupta died in the night before we announced the winner. Instead, his daughter came to take the price (right). Mr. Gupta perfected a file cutting machine by using Drylin®, but also many other parts (Neubauplan Automation).

Silver and seventy five thousand Rupees to Mr. Munir Pansare who works for Tata Motors and had been rewarded for applying iglidur® JVSM for noise reduction in steering column (center).

Last but not least, Ms. Manhari Govankop of Mahindra & Mahindra who got bronze and fifty thousand Rupees for a tractor application by making use of igubal® WGRM.

Igus India says goodbye!.3

After this make a difference, the voluntary network which supports children living in street shelters and orphanages, received from igus Germany 4600€ euros/rupees. Beforehand, we calculated with about 4200km but in the end accomplished more than 4600km! Additionally, igus India spent 100 rupees for each driven kilometer! In total we handed over about 10.000€. This is money that will ensure the school education of dozens of children.

Igus India says goodbye!.4

We had a very successful start of our tour. This was only possible due to the extraordinary organization and work of the igus India team.

Igus India says goodbye!.5

Thanks also again for the great hospitality and your support. I felt welcomed from the very first moment and will surely come back for visits.

Igus India says goodbye!.6 Igus India says goodbye!.7

Next stop is Shanghai. I see you guys there in a few days.

Igus India says goodbye!.8

Yours Sascha

From the beginning to the end…

What a final of our Indian tour. Our car visited his family members.

From the beginning to the end..

About one hundred people were welcoming us when iglidur® arrived at the Indian headquarter of Mercedes (R&D department).

From the beginning to the end....2

Most employees were astonished when they got to know that their more or less “own” car, improved with igus® bearings, is going to drive around the world.
The managing director itself, Mr. Koellermeyer, took this occasion to say some words about our project:

From the beginning to the end....3

Furthermore, the leading engineer, who has already been using our products for the last two years, shared his thoughts with us:

We visited Mercedes on our way back from Chennai. Chennai is an automobile hub at the east coast. It was the last stop on our tour. Imagine yourself sitting in a sauna where a few million people are working and you a have the entire year 100% humidity. This is more or less the climate of Chennai.
We took off from Bangalore at five in the morning to be able to drive about five hours, to visit some customers and to find some nice places for pictures. This time I spare the drive and the customers and come directly to the nice places if you don´t mind.

From the beginning to the end....4

Up on a hill, overlooking the entire city is a cathedral. About one to two hundred meters below the square from where you have a stunning view on the city and the nearby airport is the parking place, the highest point you can reach by car. If you want to get further you need a special permission.
We went to the church a few kilometers south where we were looking for a talk with the Reverent Father in charge.
Reverent Father Aeja is working closely with make a difference, the voluntary network which will receive hundred Rs per kilometer we have driven. Not interested in our bearings but fond of that we connect our trip with helping children, he gave us not only a special permission to drive up to the cathedral but even accompanied us.

From the beginning to the end....5

From the beginning to the end....6 From the beginning to the end....7

The next day we woke up at five again. As we were at the east coast we wanted to take the occasion to have a sunrise picture with iglidur®.

From the beginning to the end....8

Unfortunately, we couldn´t take the car as close as we wanted to the water so that we continued searching for a better spot. A few kilometers west of Chennai is a small fisher village which at this time, was already full of life.

From the beginning to the end....9

Nevertheless, we took the chance to demonstrate that our bearings can endure not only unbearable heat and humidity…

…but also sand and sea water.

From the beginning to the end...10

It was still very early when we left for our second trip the day. We tried to find more tropical areas. A colleague has told about a hill with stunning views. Initially, we thought about going there shortly and then to continue to Bangalore but due to traffic we got delayed. Thus, we decided to stay over night. The hotel wasn´t the best but the view the next morning was worth it.

From the beginning to the end....11

I can barely believe that our India trip is at its end. The last five weeks went by incredible fast. The time has to come to say goodbye for me. I want to use this occasion to say thank you to all my Indian colleagues and friends. With your great hospitality and your support you made my stay here to an experience I will never forget.
In the plane on the way to Germany I was sitting next to a guy who had been traveling to India already four times. When I asked him about India he just said one sentence: Once you come to India, you always come back!
I agree on this. For sure, I will come back to see you guys again and to explore more of this country, of incredible India!

The next time when I will write you guys I´m in China. I take a few days off from the blog-writing business. See you guys in Shanghai!

yours Sascha