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188 World-Renowned Engineer 2 – PART 1

 The plant manager came to Gun-Ho's office to give a report.

"DongHwa Electricity has reduced the product order dramatically. I think we'd better stop making those products for them."

"We are still selling the products to DongHwa Electricity, right? And that generates income even though it is not much."

"That's right; however, I think we need to reserve the extruding machine that has been used to manufacture those products to use exclusively for somewhere else."

"Is that because of the Japanese engineer-Mr. Sakata Ikuzo?"

"Yes. Mr. Sakata Ikuzo has been doing his work with an extruding machine at night because all of our extruding machines are fully occupied during the day. The workers who have assisted Mr. Sakata Ikuzo at night became very exhausted as well."

"Manager Jong-Suk Park has been assisting Mr. Sakata Ikuzo, right?"

"Yes, and there are two other workers who have been assisting him too."

"So, three workers have been assisting Mr. Sakata Ikuzo."

"They are not working with Mr. Sakata Ikuzo all day long though. They usually perform their job duties, and they only assist Mr. Sakata Ikuzo when he needs them."

"I see."

"Mr. Sakata Ikuzo likes to work with Manager Jong-Suk Park. I think that's because Manager Jong-Suk Park is agile, and he is extremely good at the maintenance and repair work."

"I know he is good at the maintenance and repair work, but how is he doing in the production field? Isn't he inept at production?"

"Haha. No, not at all. Usually, skillful people quickly adjust to other areas even though that area requires different skills. He is very sociable as well. He calls anyone big brother if that person is older than him."

"Haha, really?"

"As to the extruding machine, I'm suggesting to reserve one extruding machine for Mr. Sakata Ikuzo exclusively."

"They don't have to work at night that away."

"Not exactly. Once they start developing products and getting busy, they will have to work without a break. So they will have to work at night too."

"I don't know much about how things work in the production field. I will let you decide on that matter."

"Okay, sir. Thank you."

After the plant manager left Gun-Ho's office, Gun-Ho thought about Jong-Suk Park. Jong-Suk was like his little brother; they had been together for a long time in good days and bad days in life. He was like a comrade in life to Gun-Ho.

"Jong-Suk is almost perfect. The only problem is that he didn't finish his college education."

Gun-Ho was thinking that he would send Jong-Suk to college after Mr. Sakata Ikuzo completed developing the new product. Jong-Suk could take night classes so he could still work at Gun-Ho's company during the day.

"I am not sure if Polytechnics College offers night classes."

Gun-Ho searched on the Internet to see the programs that Polytechnics College offered.

Mr. Sakata Ikuzo was staying at Onyang Hot Spring Hotel, and Jong-Suk gave him a ride for his commute to work. They went to work at a certain hour every day, but they often stayed at work till late at night. Sometimes they had to work all night. The interpreter also stayed with them according to their erratic work schedule. The interpreter was staying in a OneRoom close to the factory, but he had to use public transportation to commute.

The plant manager called for Jong-Suk.

"Manager Park, starting today, you can just focus on assisting Mr. Sakata Ikuzo. You don't have to work in the production or maintenance for now."

"But there is so much work in the production and maintenance."

"Mr. Sakata Ikuzo wants your full assistance. Just do as he wants."

"Hmm. Does he think he can boss me around?"

"We can cover production and maintenance work with other personnel; we have team leaders and managers in those departments. It's not that bad to have a world-renowned engineer as your boss."

"It's strange. I don't understand why it has to be me who should assist him."

"That's because you are very good at work."

"Even though I work till late at night, I don't get paid for overtime because I am a manager. On the other hand, I heard Mr. Sakata Ikuzo will receive an incentive if he successfully develops the new product in addition to his consultation fee."

"If he could successfully develop our new product, all those money paid to Mr. Sakata Ikuzo would be worth it. It would bring substantial benefit to the company. You should think of the company's interest more. You are close to the president, right?"

"I'm concerned about the company's interest, of course. I just don't like the way Mr. Sakata Ikuzo works with the mould."

"What's wrong with his mould work?"

"It just looks shoddy."

"His mould is being used for Boeing's products."

"That's hmmm."

Mr. Sakata Ikuzo called for Jong-Suk.

"Please do some welding work on the handle of this tool and fill the joint with rubber."

"Yes, sir."

"I will insert the mould that I just finished into the extruding machine, and you raise the temperature. Why don't you put these raw materials into the hopper? 5 grams of the black pigment, 4 grams of carbon power, and 1 gram of vulcanization accelerator,..."

"Sh*t, so many stuff go into the hopper. Hey, Mr. Interpreter, don't touch that thing. Step away from that machine!"

It seemed that the interpreter touched something out of curiosity. The machine made a loud noise before the pointer needle of the pressure gauge moved upward. The interpreter was frightened and quickly ran away from the machine.

Jong-Suk ran to the machine and pressed a few buttons to stop the machine.

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"I'm... I'm so sorry."

The interpreter's face turned blue.

"You just do your job, okay? Just do the interpretation."

"Okay."

Mr. Sakata Ikuzo called for Jong-Suk again.

"Fu*k! He is calling for me like every ten minutes. Don't interpret this to him."

The interpreter smiled.

Mr. Sakata Ikuzo handed a strange-looking piece of metal to Jong-Suk.

"I just carve this out, but the surface is too rough. Can you smooth it out with sandpaper?"

"Okay."

Jong-Suk started working on the piece of metal while murmuring. The interpreter came close to Jong-Suk to watch him work.

"Stay away from me. This work creates tiny particles in the air."

In the afternoon that day, Mr. Sakata Ikuzo wanted to make a sample product for testing. He inserted the mould he had been carving out into the machine with the mixed raw materials that Jong-Suk made according to his instruction.

"Please check the temperature, coolant, compression speed, and expansion. Do not touch the machine or the mixed raw materials except Jong-Suk."

The sample product came out. It had white and yellow color on it. The yellow part was solid.

"The sample product is coming out!"

The workers in the factory all gathered in front of the machine to see the first sample product. The plant manager and the chief officer of the research center were there too.

"The mould looked so shoddy, but the product made out of that mould looked so nice."

"Look at this. This part is hard while the other part with a wing is soft."

The workers stared at the sample product in amazement.

"Don't touch it. It hasn't hardened yet."

Products made of plastic were soft when they did not solidify yet.

When the product solidified enough to be tested, Mr. Sakata Ikuzo measured its hardness with a durometer and measured its tensile strength.

Mr. Sakata Ikuzo shouted at Jong-Suk,

"Manager Park, stop the machine!"

Mr. Sakata Ikuzo let out a deep sigh.

"There is a problem with its degree of clearness. I think the mixture of magnesium carbonate caused it."

"It looks just fine."

The workers who were watching the product testing then said simultaneously,

"Soredewa Nai (It doesn't)!"

"I will have to taste it to be sure. I can't rely solely on the measuring device."

"Taste it?"

Mr. Sakata Ikuzo cut the product with a scissor and took a piece of the product which was still a bit soft and put it in his mouth.

"Wow. He is really eating it. He can't swallow it. It's plastic. He is not supposed to eat it."

Mr. Sakata Ikuzo kept chewing the product with his eyes closed. He looked like he was enjoying a piece of sushi or something. After chewing the piece of the sample product for a while, Mr. Sakata Ikuzo spit it out and said,

"We will have to add more magnesium carbonate and less oil to the mixture. Throw out all of the sample products we just made!"

"All of them? That's such a waste."

"Throw them all out!"

Mr. Sakata Ikuzo flopped down on the floor; he looked exhausted.