Best Side Hustles For Mechanical Engineers in 2024

Mechanical engineering graduates have a wide range of job options directly related to their degree as well as in fields where their skills are useful. From aerospace engineering to automotive engineering, the opportunities are lucrative for mechanical engineers looking for side hustles in 2024. Whether you’re seeking part-time work, freelance opportunities, or side gigs, there are various avenues to explore for extra income.

In this article, I will discuss some of the best side hustles for mechanical engineers in 2024 and how you can make the most of these opportunities. Whether you want to start a side business or find part-time jobs that align with your skills, I’ve got you covered. So, let’s dive in and explore the exciting world of side hustles for mechanical engineers!

Key Takeaways:

  • There are numerous side hustles available for mechanical engineers in 2024.
  • Side gigs, freelancing, and part-time jobs offer additional income opportunities.
  • Mechanical engineers can leverage their skills in various industries and sectors.
  • Exploring freelance platforms and starting a side business are viable options.
  • Consider your skills, interests, and goals when choosing a side hustle.

Career Opportunities for Mechanical Engineers

Mechanical engineers have diverse career opportunities across various industries. With their specialized skills and knowledge, they can contribute to sectors such as aerospace, automotive, construction, energy, manufacturing, medicine, and railway engineering. The demand for mechanical engineers is on the rise due to technological advancements and the need for sustainable solutions. As a result, job options for mechanical engineers are expanding, providing them with a range of career paths to choose from.

Some of the job roles available to mechanical engineers include aerospace engineer, automotive engineer, biomedical engineer, construction engineer, manufacturing engineer, mechanical engineer, project lead, quality engineer, structural engineer, and thermal engineer. These roles offer different responsibilities and opportunities for growth, allowing mechanical engineers to specialize in their areas of interest.

Exploring Employment Opportunities

Mechanical engineers can explore employment opportunities in various sectors and industries. They can work in research and development, focusing on innovative technologies and solutions. They can also pursue careers in project management, overseeing the planning and execution of engineering projects. Additionally, mechanical engineers can consider sales roles, where they can leverage their technical expertise to promote and sell engineering products and services.

Entrepreneurship is another avenue that mechanical engineers can explore. They can start their own engineering consulting firms or product development companies, offering specialized services to clients. This allows mechanical engineers to have more control over their work and contribute directly to solving industry challenges.

Overall, the career opportunities for mechanical engineers are vast and diverse. They offer a chance for individuals to apply their engineering skills and make a significant impact in various industries. Whether it’s in traditional engineering roles or exploring entrepreneurial ventures, mechanical engineers have a wide range of employment options to pursue.

Freelance Opportunities for Mechanical Engineers

As a mechanical engineer, there are numerous freelance opportunities that can provide you with additional income and a chance to explore your skills and passions outside of traditional employment. Freelancing allows you to leverage your technical expertise and work on projects that align with your interests. Whether you are looking for side hustles or part-time work, freelance engineering jobs offer flexibility and the potential for higher hourly rates.

“Freelancing gives me the freedom to choose the projects that I am truly passionate about,” says John, a freelance mechanical engineer. “I can work on diverse assignments that challenge me and allow me to apply my skills in creative ways.”

One of the advantages of freelance work is the ability to find opportunities on various freelance platforms specifically tailored for mechanical engineers. Platforms like Upwork and Fiverr provide a space for you to showcase your skills and connect with potential clients. Additionally, you can sell your engineering files and services online through platforms like Cults3D and Sellfy, enabling you to reach a wider audience and generate additional income.

Unlocking the Potential of Freelance Engineering

Freelance work also opens up opportunities beyond traditional engineering roles. For example, you can teach online courses on platforms like Udemy or Coursera, sharing your knowledge and expertise with a global audience. Another option is to open a 3D printing farm, where you can use your mechanical engineering skills to create and sell 3D-printed products. Additionally, becoming a GLG Council Member allows you to provide expert advice and consultation to organizations in need of your specialized knowledge.

However, it’s important to note that freelance engineering comes with its own set of challenges. “As a freelancer, I have to handle the business aspects of my work, such as marketing, invoicing, and managing client relationships,” says Sarah, a freelance mechanical engineer. “There is also a lack of job security, as projects are not always guaranteed.”

Overall, freelance opportunities offer a way for mechanical engineers to diversify their income streams and explore their entrepreneurial side. By carefully considering the pros and cons, developing essential skills, and staying updated with the latest industry developments, freelance engineering can be a rewarding and fulfilling career path for mechanical engineers.

Skills and Qualifications for Freelance Mechanical Engineers

skills for freelance mechanical engineers

Freelance mechanical engineers require a unique set of skills and qualifications to succeed in their freelance careers. These skills not only encompass technical expertise but also encompass a range of essential skills that are essential for freelancers. To thrive in the competitive freelance market, mechanical engineers need to possess strong problem-solving and analytical skills, as well as demonstrate technical expertise in their specialization. Attention to detail, good judgment, and the ability to work effectively in multidisciplinary teams are also crucial for freelance mechanical engineers.

Having a mechanical engineering degree provides a solid foundation, but additional skills in areas such as computer science or business can be advantageous for freelancers. Continuous learning and staying updated with the latest developments in the field are essential to ensure that freelance mechanical engineers remain competitive and deliver high-quality work to their clients.

Key Skills for Freelance Mechanical Engineers

1. Technical Expertise: A deep understanding of mechanical engineering principles and concepts specific to their chosen specialization is essential for freelance mechanical engineers. This expertise allows them to tackle complex problems and provide innovative solutions.

2. Problem-Solving: Strong problem-solving skills enable freelance mechanical engineers to analyze and solve technical challenges efficiently. They must be able to identify issues, evaluate various solutions, and make sound decisions to deliver optimal results.

3. Communication: Effective communication is crucial for freelance mechanical engineers to interact with clients, understand project requirements, and articulate their ideas and solutions. Clear and concise communication fosters strong client relationships and ensures project success.

Pros and Cons of Freelance Engineering

Pros and Cons of Freelance Engineering

Freelance engineering offers several advantages that make it an appealing option for mechanical engineers. One of the key benefits is flexibility. As a freelancer, I have the freedom to choose the projects that interest me the most and work on my own schedule. This flexibility allows me to pursue my passions and maintain a healthy work-life balance.

Another advantage of freelance engineering is the potential for higher hourly rates. Since freelancers typically work on a project basis and negotiate their rates, they have the opportunity to earn more compared to traditional employment. This can be especially beneficial for mechanical engineers who have specialized skills and expertise.

“Freelance engineering offers flexibility and the potential for higher income, but it also comes with its own set of challenges.”

However, freelance engineering also comes with its fair share of challenges. One of the main challenges is the lack of security that comes with being self-employed. As a freelancer, I am responsible for finding clients, marketing myself, and ensuring a steady flow of work. This requires constant networking, self-promotion, and business development efforts.

Additionally, freelancers have the added responsibility of running their own businesses. This includes managing finances, handling contracts and invoices, and staying on top of administrative tasks. While these challenges can be daunting, with proper planning and organization, they can be overcome.

The benefits of freelancing for mechanical engineers:

  • Flexibility to choose projects and work on a schedule that suits personal needs
  • Potential for higher income through negotiated rates

The challenges of being a freelance engineer:

  • Lack of security and stability
  • Responsibility for finding clients and marketing oneself
  • Additional administrative and business management tasks


In conclusion, freelance opportunities provide mechanical engineers with a chance to leverage their technical skills and explore new career options. Whether it’s through freelance platforms or other entrepreneurial ventures, freelancing offers a way to earn extra income while pursuing their passions.

However, it is important for mechanical engineers to carefully consider the pros and cons of freelancing. While the flexibility and potential for higher income are appealing, freelancers also face challenges such as the need for self-marketing, managing finances and running a business. It is crucial for freelancers to plan and prepare accordingly.

Ultimately, with the right skills, mindset, and determination, freelance engineering can be a rewarding and fulfilling side hustle for mechanical engineers. By assessing their qualifications and weighing the advantages and disadvantages, engineers can make an informed decision about whether freelancing is the right path for them.

So, if you’re a mechanical engineer looking to expand your horizons and explore new opportunities, freelancing could be the perfect avenue for you. Take the time to assess your skills, research the market, and plan your freelance career so that you can make the most of this exciting and lucrative field.


What are some career options for mechanical engineers?

Mechanical engineers have a wide range of job options, including aerospace engineer, automotive engineer, CAD technician, contracting civil engineer, control and instrumentation engineer, maintenance engineer, mechanical engineer, nuclear engineer, acoustic consultant, clinical technologist, corporate investment banker, land-based engineer, mining engineer, patent attorney, production manager, technical sales engineer, and water engineer.

What sectors can mechanical engineers work in?

Mechanical engineers can find opportunities in sectors such as aerospace engineering, automotive engineering, construction, energy, manufacturing, medicine, railway engineering, and sports.

What skills do mechanical engineering graduates have?

Mechanical engineering graduates have a strong set of skills, including problem-solving, numeracy, computer literacy, planning and prioritization, teamwork, attention to detail, and communication.

What further study options are available for mechanical engineers?

Mechanical engineers can pursue further study options such as MEng programs and EngD programs, which combine research and practical skills.

What are some freelance opportunities for mechanical engineers?

Mechanical engineers can explore freelance opportunities in fields such as software development, web development, IT, CAD design, and mechanical engineering. They can also sell their files and services online, teach online courses, open a 3D printing farm, or become a GLG Council Member.

What skills do freelance mechanical engineers need?

Freelance mechanical engineers need skills such as problem-solving, analytical skills, technical expertise in their specialization, numeracy, computer literacy, planning and prioritization, attention to detail, good judgment, communication, and the ability to work in multidisciplinary teams.

What are the advantages of freelance engineering?

The advantages of freelance engineering include flexibility, the ability to work on projects of interest, and potential higher hourly rates. Freelancers have the freedom to choose their clients and projects and can work from anywhere.

What are the challenges of freelance engineering?

The challenges of freelance engineering include the lack of security, the need to find clients and market oneself, and the additional responsibilities of running a business. Freelancers need to manage their finances, handle invoicing and contracts, and ensure a steady flow of work.

What should mechanical engineers consider before freelancing?

Mechanical engineers should carefully consider the pros and cons of freelancing, assess their skills and qualifications, and plan their freelance careers accordingly.

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