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Wrench Wench

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"I just said that you're pretty. Even when you're covered in... engine grease, you're... No, especially, especially when you're covered in engine grease."
Simon Tam to Kaylee, Firefly

Mechanical inclinations have traditionally been the forte of men. The Wrench Wench is a girl who sets out to change all that. She will always be skilled and confident about her own work, but because she's technically an enormous geek she sometimes has trouble with other things. She might also have Machine Empathy and can diagnose problems just by listening to the motor. She has been known to be Curious as a Monkey in the presence of new and interesting machines—or Constantly Curious, if inspection is impossible.

Usually too self-confident to ever need a Beautiful All Along plot, but very likely to have at least one She Cleans Up Nicely moment even though she's often an Unkempt Beauty anyway. Tick her off and a Wrench Whack may be in the offing. Can be used as a contrast to show that she's not as feminine as she first appears.


She's often a Ms Fix It and The Blacksmith. This can sometimes extend to pure electronic devices, but a Wrench Wench is more likely to be found with a blowtorch and ratchet set. When her talents go above and beyond mere fixing things to outright creating machinery and even textile works, she is a Gadgeteer Genius. If it is computers and the Internet instead of mechanics, she is a Hackette. If her skills wax more technical than mechanical, chances are she's a Hot Scientist, though overlap can exist when dealing with things like mecha and androids which encompass both elements. Contrast Science Hero's Babe Assistant, who is much less technically competent.

The Hood Ornament Hottie is a related trope, where the woman may be dressed or posed as if she was the mechanic, but actually is simply intended to be Eye-candy. A subtrope of The Engineer.



    open/close all folders 

  • Josephine the Plumber: the great spokeswoman for female wrench-wielding empowerment that Gen X kids grew up with, played by Jane Withers. Picture Progressive Insurance's Flo, minus the makeup and hairdo, plus grease-stained overalls.
  • A two-minute video ad for the mobile application "Xero Touch" stars a charming mid-thirties-looking wrench wench, who monologues to the viewer as she goes about her workday, explaining how much the app helps her keep track of what she earns and spends, as her charts materialize on-screen...while, of course, being gritty and cute.
  • An ad for Kohler plumbing products features a man spotting a rather attractive lady plumber down the street. He quickly runs into his house and starts flushing random household objects down his toilet, trying to get it to clog, before realizing he has a clog-resistant Kohler toilet. Then his wife catches him pouring dry dog food into the toilet and asks him what he's doing.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Fullmetal Alchemist:
    • Winry Rockbell (pictured above). Winry made her first automail when she was eleven years old, and her Weapon of Choice is a wrench. You never see her covered in grease though, since automail construction is very fine work and actually more a medical profession. BUT watch your mechanical possessions in her presence; she goes gaga at any opportunity to take something apart to figure out how it works.
    • Winry's grandmother, Pinako, is also one of these. Especially when she was young. Dominic LeCoulte still quakes in fear of her.
  • Ikuyo in Hanaukyō Maid Team is the hand maid of the main character's Maid Corps and invents all sorts of inventions for the main character, which unfortunately have a tendency to explode or malfunction.
  • Miyuki Kobayakawa of You're Under Arrest! practically built her mini patrol car from the ground up, and maintains Natsumi's motorcycles.
  • Leyte in Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann is the chief mechanic for team Dai-Gurren and is responsible for the majority of the upgrades to the mechs and the battleship.
  • Kana in Haibane Renmei is a tomboy who works in a clocktower and loves to work on machines.
  • Parfet Balblair from Vandread is the chief engineer of her crew of all female Space Pirates.
  • Fio from Porco Rosso - who turns out to be the heiress of four generations of female aircraft builders. (Her great-grandmother wields a mean tinsmithing hammer.) The entire workforce of Piccolo Aviation are women, since the men are all abroad looking for work.
  • Lyrical Nanoha:
    • Nanoha's Shrinking Violet friend Suzuka mentions in the very first episode of the first season that she wants to study engineering when she grows up, since her parents own companies in both construction and heavy industry.
    • Alto of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS is a mechanic in addition to a helicopter pilot. StrikerS Sound Stage X reveals that she also spends her spare time restoring vintage cars.
  • Leona Ozaki of Dominion Tank Police. Built her mini-tank, "Bonaparte" from the wreckage of the squad leader's Awesome, but Impractical super-tank.
  • Rain Mikamura from G Gundam serves as the mechanic for the main character's Humongous Mecha.
  • Rally Vincent in Gunsmith Cats is a gunsmith after all, and she's shown teaching May in the manga. She's never shown working on her own cars though, though she does wank over its capabilities at times.
  • Charlotte E. Yeager from Strike Witches. Before joining the witches she worked on motorcycles and airplanes, consequentially her striker unit is heavily modified. Even after joining the witches she spends her spare time in the machine shop and making further modifications to her striker unit.
  • Nae Aki in Medarot Spirits; she never was anything near fanservicey, but, in another hand, had Ikki slightly fawning over her. Justified by the fact that she's the granddaughter of Dr. Aki, the modern Medarot inventor. Thing is, if you considers the series' existence at all.
  • Miyuki Ayukawa from Basquash! is mechanic of the humongous mechas in the show.
  • Hilde Schbeiker from Gundam Wing, who has her own scrapyard and is quite proficient with computers.
  • Bulma from Dragon Ball is this. She's handy with gadgets, and, along with her father, is usually responsible for creating spaceships, as well as Trunks' time machine.
  • Rikako Ota from Wangan Midnight, the daughter of RGO shop owner Kazuo Ota. She could dismantle and rebuilt a whole engine by herself down to the crankshaft, and is in fact slated to inherit her father's shop..
  • Miki Jounouchi from Future GPX Cyber Formula is a tomboy and chief mechanic for her racing team. She once takes out the damaged turbine engine from Super Asurada AKF-11 while it is still hot and injures her hands for doing that.
  • Chinatsu from Jormungand is a villainous example. When she's not gunning people down as part of her hitman duties, she apparently likes to build complex mechanical torture devices... including one designed to shoot a bound captive in the knee. In the same spot. 27 times.
  • Nanvel Candlestick from Burn Up W/Excess. Quirky but genius inventor and still as busty as most of her squad.
  • Presea from Magic Knight Rayearth is a skilled Master Smith.
  • Air Gear has a whole team of wrench wenches: the Tool Toul To.
  • Hozuki from Galilei Donna actually carries wrenches around with her. And uses them to build some pretty crazy stuff, most notably an airship shaped like a goldfish.
  • The Ooarai Girls High School Automotive Club in the anime Girls und Panzer is made up of four highly skilled teen girl mechanics who not only work on cars but also maintain the school's motley collection of WWII tanks. In the later episodes they get to crew the notoriously cantankerous Porsche Tiger tank, doing as well as warriors as they did as wrench wenches. Their skills are useful even during final match when Porsche engine overheats. One of the crew fixed the problem while riding on the armor at full speed. Hell, they even overcharged the engine to keep up with the rest of the team and destroy the bridge to delay opponent's reinforcements.
  • Jane Buxton, in Secret of Cerulean Sand, attempts to follow her brother's tracks by building several flying machines and succeed in the end.
  • Shinobu Yuuki from UQ Holder! was introduced trying to fix up an old hoverbike, and dreams of building a ship to compete in the Solar Olympics.
  • Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress has Yukina who's good at working machines such as the train.
  • Mei Hatsume from My Hero Academia. A member of the Support Course at UA Academy (as opposed to the Hero Course that the main character is in) she is a Ditzy Genius who is focused on (read obsessed with) constantly engineering new support items, which she refers to as her "babies", to help heroes in their crimefighting activities. And she is a total maniac when it comes to inventing; in less than a year, she's left a corner of the Development Studio full of the prototypes and gadgets she's made.

    Asian Animation 
  • In Guardian Fairy Michel, Kim is an expert pilot and good at fixing broken machines.
  • In the Pleasant Goat and Big Big Wolf season Flying Island: The Sky Adventure, inventing is one of Hope's specialties. She's built a giant mech suit, for one, and tries to help deliver weather fruits with remote-controlled mechanical wings also of her own making. She does have a bad track record when it comes to her inventions interrupting other people, though, making the other weather factory employees afraid of what her mechanical wings might mess up until Hope increases their accuracy by having them programmed to autopilot their way to people's houses to make deliveries.

    Comic Books 
  • Rogue from X-Men is shown repairing both motorcycles and the Blackbird, and she even once worked as a mechanic.
  • Betty Cooper, from Archie Comics, is absurdly talented with auto repair and other forms of masculine expertise. This makes her either more or less attractive to the boys, depending on the story. In the reboot she is basically her boyfriend's mechanic, and Archie is clueless about that sort of stuff.
  • "Ma" Hunkel, the original Red Tornado from the Golden Age of The DCU, worked as a riveter during WWII. All that heavy labor probably helped with her right hook.
  • Maggie Chascarrillo, a.k.a. Maggie the Mechanic, from Jaime Hernandez's half of Love and Rockets.
  • Sharri Barrnett from Steelgrip Starkey and the All-Purpose Power Tool is the computer-programming version of this trope.
  • Chassis was more of driver, but she certainly knew her way around the underside of a bonnet.
  • Courtney "Cover Girl" Krieger from G.I. Joe was a former high-fashion model who enlisted and became a missile-tank driver. Who then trained to do all the upkeep and repair work on her own vehicle.
  • The ElfQuest title "Rebels" has Chandra. One example: she and Scorch take apart part of a top-secret space engine -and put it back together within twenty minutes.note 
  • "Rosie The Riveter" by underground artist Trina Robbins.
  • In Drowntown, Izzy seems to do maintenance on the water bikes used in the courier business she shares with Gina (and Gina might as well). That doesn't mean she actually likes working on machines, though — unlike Gina, she'd get out of the business if there were something with more money and glamour available.
  • Star Wars: Legacy: Delilah Blue serves as the engineer of the Mynock, keeping the ship running smoothly when she's not serving as the female lead of the series.
  • Dan In Space has Joules, who's job is to fix Dan's ship whenever it gets damaged.
  • Nautica from Transformers: More than Meets the Eye is a female Autobot quantum mechanic (though she has interest in other subjects such as history or cartography) from Caminus who is usually seen carrying her wrench around.
  • Agent Boysenberry in Disney Ducks Comic Universe (the "Tamers of Nonhuman Threats" subseries featured in various Disney titles). As a mechanic, she is often sent out as a third partner to Donald Duck and Fethry, with assignments to reprogram, recalibrate, or sabotage machinery they interact with.
  • In Ghostopolis, Claire loves fixing and building vehicles (she builds her own Plasmapod), to the point that her ghost haunts a garage.

    Fan Works 
  • Tsuumanote  is this in Tengen Toppa Gurren Solvernia, Viral's personal mechanic and personal snarker.
  • Olga Romanoff, an Air Policewoman in Ankh-Morpork, is also a largely self-taught broomstick technomancer who stands apart from other witches in that she knows what makes one go and is prepared to roll up her sleeves and really work on souping up the standard model. She and her friend and fellow flight technomancer Irena Politek operate a hangar full of customised broomsticks in City Watch service. Working with Dwarf brothers the Messers Schmidt and Zlobenian dwarf Mig Oyeff, they currently fly ME-109's and the MIG-21 broomsticks. Their prototype ME Schmidt 262 is going to be revolutionary. The girls appear in Slipping Between Worlds and other tales in the Discworld Expanded Universe.
    • In the fic Strandpiel, the youngest daughter of Ponder Stibbons and Johanna-Smith-Rhodes turns out to be skilled with her hands. A gifted artist and musician, she is prone to do things like dismantle the valves of a Quirmian Horn just to see how it works. And then reassemble it again afterwards. Given a defective crossbow to examine by her Assassin mother note . Ruth glances at it, identifies the fault in seconds, and then suggests a fix that will put it right properly. Given the idea by her older sister, she then designs the Discworld's first acoustic bass guitar, from first principles. she then takes the idea Up to Eleven by working out how to use Magitek to add amplification.
  • Sky Bolt from The Dusk Guard Saga works as an engineer for an airship company. She is a compassionate tinkerer, working on improving deep water pumping in her spare time, among dozens of other projects. Her latest design, The Alicorn, had to be reverse-engineered, because nobody understood how it worked exactly, and so she would have been the only one able to maintain it.
  • Code Geass: Paladins of Voltron: Like Grandfather, Like Granddaughter it seems - Milly's the one who takes on Hunk's role when the group meets Rolo's crew.
  • From the Triptych Continuum, we have Ratchette. She runs Ponyville's fixit shop, doing minor to moderate repairs on devices and conveniences — which is all she's generally capable of: adjustments on the physical elements can be managed, but fixing the spells themselves is impossible for a pegasus. Her mark seems to give her the (occasional) ability to diagnose problems on contact — something she can't bring herself to tell anypony about — and she does clean up rather nicely, although one angry non-customer describes her as needing five baths just to reach "dirty". Her capabilities and limitations are given some exploration in Mechanical Aptitude.
  • Sofia from The Glaceon and the Shadow carries a lot of tools with her and uses them to create all kinds of contraptions. Some of them are nearly, or completely useless, such as a hat she created to disguise herself as a duck or a contraption involving forks scratching on plates and a cone to magnify their sound at an enemy. Others, like her flying machine, work very well.
  • Both Daisy and Rosalina are presented as having mechanic skills in The 3 Little Princesses. With Rosalina it is certainly justified because she has no one else to help with the observatory. When Peach and Rosalina meet the latter isn't even wearing her typical dress, instead she's wearing a dirty mechanic uniform while fixing her observatory.
  • The first time the titular character rides in Giles's car in Faith: The Vampire Slayer, she figures out most of what's wrong with it and later replaces it's engine herself while advising him to get new shocks installed. All despite only having a freshman level education.
  • Cowlick from the Blooming Moon Chronicles is one, with her extensive labs in which she usually creates weapons for the protagonists. This also applies to her apprentice, Apple Bloom.
  • Two cases in the Kim Possible fic Vacation From The Norm;
    • Bonnie Rockwaller. After she married Senor Senor Jr. her new father-in-law Senor Senor Sr. indulged her interest in restoring cars and motorcycles, which contributed to Bonnie's Taking a Level in Kindness, as well as the Senors' Heel–Face Turn. When SSS, SSJ and Bonnie formed a new team of heroes called The Upperclassmen, Bonnie took on the codename "The Mechanic".
    • Yori is also knowledgeable about cars and has done some restoration of her own. This is one of the reasons she and a reformed Motor Ed become a couple.

    Films — Animated 
  • As bizarre as it may sound, Disney seems to be taking Tinker Bell, of all characters, in this direction with her CGI Disney Fairies movies. The reasoning is actually fairly logical—why else would she be named Tinker Bell? Plus, the novel Peter Pan is based on states that Tinker Bell is a tinker who mends the pots and pans. It's not like Disney pulled this out of nowhere.
  • Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius: Jimmy Neutron's mother is seen working under the family car at one point. She also pointed out a flaw in one of Jimmy's inventions and explains it in full Techno Babble. It turns out she was very right.
  • Audrey from Atlantis: The Lost Empire is chief mechanic of a huge submarine despite being a teenager, and loves machinery in general. Although she's never actually seen repairing anything mechanical on-screen (the most technical work she is shown doing is turning a valve and tightening a nut, tasks anyone with with a pair of functioning hands and a wrench can accomplish, and the one time her set of skills is directly needed, Milo ends up doing the job instead).

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Mikaela (Megan Fox) in the live-action Transformers is extremely good with cars but hides it from her boyfriend and friends to remain popular.
    Mikaela: Guys don't like it when you know more about cars than they do.
  • Charlie Watson (Hailee Steinfeld) from Bumblebee is hugely in car repair and used to fix cars with her father before he passed away. However, at the end of the film, she finishes the last car she and her father started working on before his death.
  • Another Robert Rodriguez example: In Sin City, Nancy tells John Hartigan "Nobody but me can keep this heap running".
  • Grind House: In Quentin Tarantino's Death Proof, Zoe and Kim are that, since they are stuntwomen.
  • Alex (Jennifer Beals), the main character from Flashdance. She works part time as a welder in a steel mill.
  • Monique in Better Off Dead, who fixed Lane's Camaro that would otherwise keep catching rust.
  • Lisa from My Cousin Vinny, whose insane (or rather "dead-on-balls accurate") knowledge of cars saves the defendants in the murder trial.
  • Kate the blacksmith from A Knight's Tale is the 14th-century version.
  • June, a car refurbisher , in Knight and Day.
  • Kay and Hazel, the female leads in Swing Shift, both become wrench wenches after joining a munitions facility during World War II.
  • Mary in The Muppets is very good at working with cars and electricity.
  • Rey in The Force Awakens is shown to be skilled with mechanics.
  • Jim Jarmusch's Night on Earth (1991) gives us L.A. cab driver/aspiring mechanic Corky, played by Winona Ryder. When she picks up movie exec (Gena Rowlands) who is impressed by Corky and wants to make her a movie star, Corky turns her down, staying true to her unassuming tomboy working-class self.
  • Another Corky, this one played by Gina Gershon in the Wachowskis' Bound (1996), is a handywoman whose romance with Violet (Jennifer Tilly) begins with wielding a wrench for her.
    Corky: You dropped that earring down the sink on purpose, didn't you?
  • Jaylah, in Star Trek Beyond, turns a 100-year-old Federation ship into her home and gets most of its systems working on her own, even though she doesn't have any formal engineering training. Kirk is so impressed with her work that he ultimately arranges for her to be admitted into Starfleet Academy.
  • A very rare example from a 1930s film, Heat Lightning: Olga is a car mechanic and a damn good one.
  • In Forty Guns, Louvenia Spangler is an expert gunsmith. This is a large part of what makes Wes (The Gunslinger) fall in love with her.
  • Mellie Logan in Logan Lucky. Not only is she the Caper Crew's Badass Driver, she knows her ways around the mechanics of vehicles as well. When Joe questions the dimensions of canopies she designed to fit under the van for their Underside Ride, her brother Clyde replies simply "Mellie knows her trucks".
    • Mellie's preteen niece Sadie also counts. She's a beauty pageant contest who helps him fix a car, knowing what wrenches to hand him.
  • Pavla in Invincible, a Russian film set in World War Two. She is an expert tank mechanic who ends up driving a tank in combat, because of events.
  • Diane from Voyage of the Rock Aliens is good with machinery and wears her tool belt everywhere. She's even kind enough to fix the psycho killer's chainsaw when it jams. Unlike most examples, she's quite feminine otherwise.

  • The main character of C. E. Murphy's Urban Shaman trilogy is one of these, being a dedicated car enthusiast who restored a 1969 Mustang all by herself, and worked as a mechanic for the Seattle Police Dept. She even continues to use the idea of fixing a car to work her healing magics (fixing a broken windshield, replacing a flat tire, using windshield wipers to clear her vision, etc.).
  • Nadia Chernyshevski of the Red Mars Trilogy was a nuclear engineer in Siberia before her job building mankind's first base on Mars. Her skills in solving technological problems earned her the nickname "Universal Solvent".
  • Mercy Thompson, a.k.a. Mercedes the Volkswagen mechanic. She got started at 16 when she was sent to do community service fixing up cars, and now she owns and runs her own garage.
  • Samella Connel from Douglas Hill's Col Sec Trilogy, although her particular talent seems to be mostly with computer hardware and programming.
  • Ellie Linton, from The Tomorrow Series, is quite competent at fixing machinery, which, considering that she's a ranch-raised country girl, is Truth in Television.
  • Tania, Nathaniel Cade's on/off vampiric girlfriend in the President's Vampire series is one of these; apparently she grew up with seven brothers, and thus never subscribed to the philosophy women are useless with anything mechanical. This proves a useful skill in the second novel when she re-configures the Black Site's fire suppression system to spray methane gas, allowing Cade to set off an explosion to destroy the site and its monstrous occupants.
  • Linda Connor, from Swedish SF author Anders Blixt's dieselpunk spy adventure Iskriget (The Ice War), is a trained mechanic with a solid professional reputation in her home town. She "saves the day" with her skills at several occasions during the story. She usually wears workmen's clothes and has a male haircut, both for purely practical reasons.
  • Although Alice has spent most of her life studying sorcery her real gift is with watches and mechanical things, including her creating The Witch Watch.
  • As both she and her father are highly ranked engineers, Laeshana from The Quest of the Unaligned has traces of this.
  • Second Lieutenant Cynthia Robbins of The Flight Engineer trilogy. In addition to being second-in-command of Invincible's fighter maintenance crew she developed an advanced prosthetic hand for her boss, Commander Peter Raeder, that led to him being able to fly again.
  • The Heroes of Olympus:
    • Leo's mom, Esperanza Valdez, was a mechanic and fell in love with the god of forges, Hephaestus. She received a college degree in mechanical engineering but never received a job in that field because because she was never taken seriously as a mechanic since she was a woman.
    • Nyssa was a daughter of Hephaestus. She was leader of the cabin of Hephaestus' children. As a child of this god, she could manipulate machines, as well as being an expert mechanic and builder. She could also sense machines, mechanic or metal and identify machinery types by a touch.
  • This is Lizzie's character in Spider Circus, technically she's called a 'wiredancer.'
  • Fae is the head mechanic in The Osmerian Conflict, and is almost always found in either the hanger or the electronics room doing some form of maintenance or mechanical checks.
  • Murielle in Our Bloody Pearl. She regularly wears tools in her hair.
  • In Outlander Leander, Tenore installs and repairs nearly everything in the Wind Queen's theater. She's even introduced at the top of a ladder, replacing a bulb and covered in dust. Though she gets caught up in her work, it's revealed later that people often gossip around her because they forget she's there, and she does listen in.
  • The aptly-named Free Wrench has Amanita Graus as the story's protagonist.
  • Maugin from books series The Edge Chronicles
  • Indira Fenstermacher, the former space station engineer in Alien in a Small Town.
  • Linh Cinder, the main character of Marissa Meyer's Cinder, is the best mechanic in New Beijing.
  • The Cinder Spires: Gwen, much to everyone's surprise, since no-one expects a five-foot, doll-faced daughter of high nobility to know her way around airship power cores. It becomes more clear when she explains that her family manufactures said power cores, and that she has spent enough time on the floor that she can recognize not only make and model but individual units at a glance.
  • Elinor M Brent-Dyer's Chalet School series has Jacynth 'Jack' Lambert, a tomboy who loves carpentry and all things mechanical, and wants to own her own garage. Bear in mind that the books where Jack appears were written during the '50s, when mechanic work was a very unusual career for a woman. This actually becomes a plot point in Jane and the Chalet School when she and Jane Carew get into a fight, because Jack is jealous that Jane gets to wash the teachers' car instead of her.
  • The Mark of the Dragonfly: Piper works as a machinist, and is one of the best in her scrap town. Jeyne is the head engineer on the 401 train.
  • Red Moon Rising: Rae is good at engineering, and builds a prosthetic arm at one point.
  • David Weber's Honor Harrington has a couple of one-step-removed examples. Haven Admiral Shannon Foraker heads the R&D group which has been so successful at making up the huge technology gap between Haven and Manticore, which was primarily because of Admiral Sonja Hemphill. Details are not available in either case as to how much they specifically got their own hands dirty, but both women are frequently stated to be the primary drivers of the weapons which put both of their nations significantly in advance of every other group in the galaxy.
    • And as of "Uncompromising Honor", they are working directly together. The Mesan Alignment better watch out, as right now the only advantage they have is in bio-chem (the genetics based programming attacks) and the streak drive, and Shannon and Sonja are fully aware of the capabilities of both of them.
  • Robert A. Heinlein story "Delilah and the Space Rigger" has the first female technician building a space station. Her boss objects to a woman in space; fretfully sending her on a shift, he tells her to pay attention to the foreman, as he's a good man and knows his stuff. She replies, "I know- I trained him".

    Live-Action TV 
  • Daphne Moon in Frasier, which extends to carpentry. She's a Lad-ette because she grew up with eight brothers, all of whom but one were rowdy Oop North types.
  • Dr. Bonnie Barstow of Knight Rider. She maintains KITT.
  • Raven Reyes of The 100. She came to Earth after the original 100, only to find her boyfriend Finn was with the show's protagonist, Clarke. Despite this, her tech expertise help Clarke establish contact with The Arc and is essential in the battle against the Grounders.
  • Kaylee of Firefly. She joined the crew because the captain walked in on her having sex with the ship's mechanic in the engine room. She diagnosed the engine's problem while in the act, and fixed it on the spot when Mal showed up. He fired his mechanic and hired her as she was getting dressed. In "Shindig," Kaylee cleans up and goes to a fancy ball, but spends the evening discussing engines with a rapt audience.
  • Farscape:
  • Maria from Sesame Street runs the local garage with her husband.
  • B'Elanna Torres from Star Trek: Voyager. Although Star Trek engine rooms tend to be cleaner than a modern-day operating theatre, she does still manage to get covered in dirt and grease on a fairly regular basis.
  • Theora Jones of Max Headroom is of the high-tech variety rather than the grease-monkey variety.
  • Heather from Jericho.
    Heather: Mind if I pitch in?
    Jake: Do you know how to strip wires?
    Heather: Ever since junior high.
    (Jake stares at her)
    Heather: Yeah, I was that popular.
  • In CSI, both Sara and Catherine have their moments doing experiments or processing a car. It actually became something of a Running Gag in Television Without Pity that Sara delighted in tearing vehicles apart.
  • Abby Sciuto on NCIS falls into this category, especially when the team is investigating a vehicle-involved crime. Off with the white lab coat, on with the bright red mechanic's coveralls.
  • Bella Banks in Young Americans. She is a high school student who works as a mechanic at her dad's auto repair shop.
  • The series has had several Hot Scientists down the years, but it wasn't until Power Rangers Operation Overdrive's Ronny that it got a Wrench Wench to balance things out. Her tendency for practically fondling new weaponry with an awed smile on her face makes one wonder how the show stayed TV-Y7. Of course, she had to be the first to test out any new gadget. And apparently, being a race car driver who can work on her own cars has left her qualified to work on giant robots. One of the aforementioned Hot Scientists was Operation Overdrive's own Pink Ranger, providing the show with a double-dose of geek girls.
  • Gemma in Power Rangers RPM combines Wrench Wench with Hackette and a fetish for explosions.
  • Ashley Hammond in the Power Rangers Turbo episode "The Turn of the Wretched Wrench". Conversely, this was the day job of her Japanese counterpart, Natsumi Shinohara from Gekisou Sentai Carranger: she's good enough to dismount a moving bike.
  • Bakuryuu Sentai Abaranger has Ranru/AbareYellow, who gave up a career as an Idol Singer to pursue her dream of becoming a mechanic.
  • In the That '70s Show episode "Career Day", Jackie, who's a rich, spoiled Valley Girl type teen shows unexpected skill in fixing cars.
  • Barbara in The Good Life who is at least as mechanically capable as her husband.
  • Juliette Burke in the 5th season of Lost (in Dharmaville) works as an auto mechanic.
  • Lacy Rand in Caprica turns out to be one of these, helping one of the other Soldiers of the One (who is apparently now her Love Interest) fix a motorcycle engine.
  • Stargate SG-1 has Samantha Carter, who's not only the show's Omnidisciplinary Scientist but also builds Naquada reactors in her office/workshop in her spare time. One scene showed her working closely with a mechanical object very intently. With her, it is likely an alien device of some kind. The camera pulls back to reveal she was tuning up her bike.
  • Sanctuary has Dr. Helen Magnus, also played by Amanda Tapping, who again falls under this trope. Very obvious in episode 21, where they get stuck in an old oil rig and need to MacGyver their way out.
  • While we didn't get to see much of it "on panel," DG from Tin Man seemed happiest either drawing or fixing stuff with her robotic foster dad.
  • In one episode of Home Improvement, car enthusiast Tim gets a new mechanic who is one of these, which leads to him becoming slightly attracted to her. Of course, the fact that she's played by Jenny McCarthy doesn't hurt, either.
  • In Degrassi Goes Hollywood fashion model Mia, who tags along on the journey to L.A., later ends up helping fix the broken down bus with her expensive leggings, saying it was an old trick her mom taught her.
  • The Audiobooks for The Sarah Jane Adventures make this into Sky's way to assist the team, in a much cuter and less fanservicey way. Her ability to sense and understand energy being part of it, but she just understands machinery.
  • When the family starts fixing up a car for Matt in season 3 of 7th Heaven, it's boy-crazy Lucy who is shown to be an idiot savant when it comes to cars.
  • The Cold Case episode "Factory Girls" featured a troop of these building planes to be used in World War 2.
  • All the girls on Mythbusters. The most famous, Kari Byron, is actually a lighter example than the other two, being an artist by training. Scottie Chapman from the earlier seasons is a much straighter example, being a welder and metal worker. Jessi Combs, who filled in for Kari when she was on maternity leave, is a metal fabricator.
  • Given her heritage, Marti in Slingers would be expected to be technically skilled, and so far she's demonstrated a definite affinity with spaceship power systems (and the disabling thereof).
  • Doctor Who:
    • Gia Kelly in "The Seeds of Death" is the electronics-expert variant; she's the world's greatest expert on the planet-wide teleportation system, and also makes field repairs to an improvised Death Ray.
    • Rachel "Ray" Defwydd in "Delta and the Bannermen" is a Biker Babe who habitually carries spanners, Allen keys and whatever else she needs to conduct running repairs.
    • The Thirteenth Doctor's first episode puts her in a Sheffield garage gleefully cobbling together a new sonic screwdriver.
  • Happy Quinn, the "mechanical prodigy" on Scorpion.
  • Tabby, from MonsterWarriors. Invents all manner of weaponry, and makes the Monster Mobile go, all with household waste.
  • Twiggy, apprentice at Welderup in Sin City Motors. Formerly a model (and sometimes still is) before joining the crew of rat rod makers.
  • The Expanse's Naomi Nagata. She gets annoyed when she's on a ship that's already in perfect shape and needs no tuning or repair.
  • Sister Steve, the streetwise nun in the Father Dowling Mysteries knows how to hotwire a car. That's because of her youth in a rough neighborhood.
  • The Last Ship has Commander Andrea Garnett, the Executive Officer of the titular ship, who was originally the Chief Engineer. Even after her promotion, she still performs engineering duties when required and her expertise is the reason she and the others kidnapped by pirates are rescued.
  • Bade Uysal of Ezel is a Wrench Wench of The Blacksmith variety. Although she dabbles in a variety of arts as a student, her passion appears to lie in welding and (especially) sculpting, which she does at the workshop.
  • In Hardball, 'Auntie' Mahaki is a mechanic who specializes in restoring and customizing hot rods. Salwa is in awe of her, and Jerry seems to be a little bit smitten.

  • In her music video to "Why don't you love me", Beyoncé is playing a woman fixing a car wearing a crop top and daisy dukes.
  • In The Protomen (a rock opera based on the Mega Man (Classic) series), Dr. Light's lover works in a factory. Keeping her safe from a dangerous job is part of his motivation for creating the robots central to the series. Of course, Dr. Wily has other plans.
  • The entire first verse from Felt's "Dirty Girl" is about this. Lines include "Standin' there holding that drippin' dipstick/With a firm grip, yet so delicate/And the way you took that orange oil rag and wiped it clean/Its guaranteed to get repeated in my dreams" and "Got so lost in your smile when you asked me what the mileage was"
  • The Beach Boys' "Car Crazy Cutie" is an ode to a woman who shares her beau's enthusiasm for automobiles:
    Well, my steady little doll is a real live beauty
    And everybody knows she's a car-crazy cutie
    She's hip to everything, man, from customs to rails
    And axle grease embedded 'neath her fingernails!
  • The music video for Girls Aloud's "Long Hot Summer" is set in a mechanic's shop with the girls sporting boiler suits and working on cars.
  • The video for the Dandy Warhols' "Bohemian Like You" features a guy ogling a girl who's wearing greasy overalls and fixing a car. While he's talking to her, he visualises her without the overalls. In the interests of fairness, later on when he's working in a bar, a girl does the exact same thing to him.
  • The video for "The Way You Move" by OutKast is set in a garage featuring ridiculously hot and scantily-clad women.


    Tabletop Games 

  • Natalie from All Shook Up is a tomboyish mechanic; she introduces herself to Chad, the town roustabout (and her new crush) by offering to fix his motorcycle.

  • The toyline GoldieBlox is aimed at young girls and features the titular character Goldie, a girl builder, engineer, mechanic and inventor, and has a construction kit.

    Video Games 
  • Lucca from Chrono Trigger, a machine enthusiast who takes after her father, is one of the earliest video game examples.
  • Almost every major female character in Cyberpunk 2077 can fix some kind of machines:
    • Judy Alvarez fixed a fire truck she found in a scrapyard when she was a teenager.
    • Panam Palmer comes from a Nomad group called Aldecaldos, who are noted to be very bonded to their vehicles. In the first scene that we meet her, she's fixing a car she borrowed.
    • Claire Russel's hobby is street racing in which she participates with her truck, Beast, that she services herself.
    • Female V, who has the Nomad lifepath choosen, will start the game fixing her truck.
  • Mega Man Legends:
    • Roll Casket is a genius mechanic who's in charge of piloting and maintaining her family's airship .
    • Also, Tron Bonne combines this with a fancy for designing robots, although generally she tends to design new electronics more often than fix old motors.
  • Final Fantasy:
    • Jessie from Final Fantasy VII, who also displays a fascination with explosives.
    • Rikku from Final Fantasy X is good with machines, and comes with an ability that lets her One-Hit KO a machine type enemy.
    • In Final Fantasy XV, we are introduced to Cidney, the series's first female incarnation of the famous mechanic, Cid, who we first meet fixing cars at a local gas station. In the playable demo, she is the one who fixes the guys' car when it breaks down in Duscae. Sadly, in the English version, she's renamed Cindy. Apparently, Cidney was too punny? Her grandfather is named Cid in both versions though.
  • Led Campbell from Septerra Core is a genius mechanic, her weapon is literally an enormous wrench, and she's so hot that total strangers will give her money or items.
  • Mass Effect:
    • Tali'Zorah, who's part of an alien race called the quarians. Quarians are the whole race of incredibly skilled engineers. And even among the quarians, she is counted one of the best engineers and geth specialists.
    • Like most character tropes involving the squad, Fem Shep can qualify for this one too - just make her an engineer.
    • They are joined by Samantha Traynor in Mass Effect 3, though she's more the communications officer and spends her time cracking code.
    • As well as Engineer Gabriella Daniels, first introduced in Mass Effect 2, who works in the Normandy's lower deck alongside her coworker, Ken Donnelly.
  • Brigitte of Overwatch, daughter of Gadgeteer Genius Torbjorn, is a textbook example. She puts this skill to use as her godfather Reinhardt’s Squire—much like the Squires of old, her biggest task is maintaining her knight’s (Power) Armor. She later develops her own Powered Armor, and serves as a Paladin-esque fighter.
  • Alyx from Half-Life 2 is this and an Action Girl combined in one. Not only is she a good mechanic, she's also a godly hacker.
  • Keira from the Jak and Daxter series. Tess is one as well, only her specialty is weaponry, not vehicles.
  • The Mechanic NPC from Terraria is this. She carries a wrench and sells them too.
  • Valkyria Chronicles has Isara Gunther. She's also the one to first appear at a gun fight with her father's customized heavy tank! Yes, a Moe tank opperator.
    • In the 4th game in the series, Riley Miller qualifies, being your squads engineer as well as having been a research scientist prior to the game, she also goes out in the field as a mortar expert.
  • Samanya in Red Faction: Guerrilla is the chief engineer of the Red faction organization and creator of all their weapons.
  • Eva Navarro of Mercenaries 2: World In Flames. She'll build any number of custom PMC vehicles for you, for a price.
  • The original Ann from Harvest Moon and Harvest Moon: Magical Melody loves to tinker with machines and invent things, though she isn't always good at it. Being an inventor apparently runs in the family, as her grandson Rick in Harvest Moon 64 is similar.
  • Penelope of the Sly Cooper games specializes in remote-controlled vehicles, so the gang try to hire her on. However, she later betrays them in the fourth game.
  • Moira Brown from Fallout 3. You, yourself, qualify as well if you're the female version of the Lone Wanderer and spend up on Repair skill points.
  • Licca Kusunoki in Gods Eater Burst fits this to a tee, in charge of maintaining the Far East Branch's God Arcs. complete with oversized gloves and a tendency to hug the protagonist when they do something stupid.
  • Wave the Swallow in Sonic Riders, who is the one responsible for building the boards for the Babylon Rogues.
  • When Starkiller first lays eyes on Juno Eclipse in Star Wars The Force Unleashed, she is working on his ship, The Rogue Shadow. The comics also show her working on other equipment.
  • Robin from Iconoclasts is a mechanic in a world where unauthorized mechanical engineering is illegal, and carries an oversized wrench that she uses to twist equally-large bolts and attack enemies.
  • Touhou Project has Rika in its second installment, who builds tanks and is rarely seen without her wrench in fanart. Also, Kawashiro Nitori from Touhou 10 Mountain of Faith, like most kappa in the series, is a Magitek engineer who dons optical camouflage, extendible robots arms, and missiles. She's really fond of human technology that falls across the Great Hakurei Border and, according to common fanart, has her own lines of electronics.
  • When Sunny Gurlukovich/nee Emmerich first appeared in Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots she was a shy computer hacking expert with a No Social Skills and a slight stutter, but by the time Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance rolls around, she's become a capable and confident engineer who helped develop the fastest suborbital thruster the world has ever seennote  and is actively working on a spacecraft able to make the journey to Jupiter within her guardian's lifetime.
  • Borderlands 2:
    • Ellie. Although she is one of the most obese characters in the game, speaking to other characters and listening to audiologs reveals that there are some people on Pandora who like it that way.
    • The first DLC has Gaige the Mecromancer, a young girl, who built herself a robotic hand after cutting off one of her own. She could have healed the cut, but she wanted to have a cool way to digistruct her home-made combat robot.
    • As we learn in the Pre-Sequel, Mad Moxxi knows her way around a hardware shop too.
  • Pascal from Tales of Graces. Despite being a Ditzy Genius who frequently reverts to Buffy Speak, she's a mechanical genius who can fix almost anything.
  • Krusche and Sasha from the EXA_PICO series. Krusche is more focused on ships and weapons, while Sasha is skilled at creating satellites, reflecting plates, and other instruments.
  • Maki Kagura from The King of Fighters loved to fix her Biker Babe sister Chizuru's motorcycle as her hobby, as stated in her profile.
  • Claret from Skyborn fixes airships and is all too ready to chew out anybody who mistreats their ship. She also built herself an R2-D2 type robot sidekick.
  • Switch from A Very Long Rope to the Top of the Sky is one; her father Gunther is An Engineer in his own right as well.
  • Ginny from RPG Shooter: Starwish, who is always seen with a wrench, papers and a pencil. After protagonist Deuce crash-lands near her home, she fixes his space fighter and then applies as engineer on the mothership he and his fellow pirates do business with. Neferiti, who built the massive ship Firebolt by herself and Mare, who constructed her own superior space fighter, are also this but decidedly less open about it.
  • Evolve:
    • Sunny is one of these, as well as an Action Girl. She built shield drones from old mining equipment, has the capability to build an FTL drive onto a ship if given the right supplies, and carries a mini-nuke grenade launcher.
    • Lennox. Besides designing the mining facilities of Shear and a mobile space station, she built her Thunderchild suit in three days.
  • In Stardew Valley, one of the potential female romance options is Maru, the local scientist's daughter. Maru bonds with you over building a robot as a pet project, and eventually accidentally electrocutes you with it. Fortunately, she doubles as a Hospital Hottie. If you marry her, she moves in and often can be found tinkering with gadgets in the bedroom.
  • In Stella Glow, Rena is a young one who's training to one day take over her father's business (essentially a combination of jeweler and blacksmith). She's forced to take over the business far earlier than anticipated and proves to be every bit as competent as her father—and produces a powerful new Orb to ease the Final Battles along.
  • In Shop Heroes, the Artificer character who you can hire fits this archetype. So does Louca, one of the heroes who visits your shop, although in her case it doesn't actually have much bearing on gameplay.
  • In Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown, Avril Mead is known to the prisoners of the 444th Squadron (a penal squadron that she is assigned to be the mechanic for) as the 'Scrap Queen', as she's an incredible mechanic who can, with enough airplane pieces from wrecked jets, assemble and improve jet fighters. With some help from her grandfather and his old war buddies, she even salvaged enough pieces from a scrap yard to assemble a working fighter jet that she took off in. (Unfortunately, she took off just as Erusea launched a drone-fighter surprise attack across Osea, one of which was being chased right by her when she was in the sky... and she had neglected to install an IFF that would identify her to the Osean pilots. She was shot down, but survived- and was thrown in jail for her trouble.)
  • Ophelia is one in Maple Story 2. If your equipment and weapons need enchantment, she's the person to consult.
    • Peachy serves the same purpose but is a downplayed example due to her less tomboyish traits.
  • Persona:
    • Persona 3: Fuuka Yamagishi likes to work on electronics.
    • Persona 4: Naoto Shirogane likes building detective and spy gadgets.
  • Ava Azniv and Adisa Mostafa from Planet Explorers, mechanical and computer engineers respectively. Ava can supply the player with robot parts while Adisa specialises in vehicles.
  • Verdant Skies: Rosie Martinez is a talented mechanical engineer, though she's new to being a space mechanical engineer.
  • Haven (2020): Yu is the engineer of the couple, working to keep their Nest functional.
  • XCOM 2: Lily Shen, like her father before her, is XCOM's chief engineer, in charge of maintaining the Avenger, building new facilities, fabricating and repairing equipment, and developing experimental technology.
  • ARMS: The fittingly-named Mechanica is this at 15 years old. Lacking the required genetic ability to participate in ARMS battles, Mechanica designed a stretchy-armed mech suit from scratch.
  • The incarnation of Princess Zelda in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild is shown to be this through the game's flashback scenes. This character trait takes center stage in the psuedo-prequel Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity, where her main weapon for most of the game is the Sheikah Slate, many of her sidequests revolve around her love of research and tinkering, and it's revealed she is the one who built the mini-Guardian Terrako.
  • In The Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky, Tita Russel is the party's authority on all things having to do with orbal technology, descending from a long line of orbal engineers. By the time of Cold Steel III, her skills have improved to the point where she could qualify as a Gadgeteer Genius like her mother and grandfather, being instrumental to the development of the latest version of the Orbal Gear project.
    • Downplayed by Alisa Reinford from The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel. As the scion of the largest orbal technology manufacturer in Erebonia, she has the technical know-how to troubleshoot malfunctioning orbments and make minor repairs, but she's not quite on the level of being an engineer. Her forte is more on the business side of the company than on the development side.
  • Yakuza: Like a Dragon: Craftable equipment is made for you by Sumire, a young woman in a pink boiler suit.


    Web Original 
  • Katherine Blanco from Survival of the Fittest version three was the best mechanic in her school until she was killed by a hornet's sting on the island.
  • Sharon from Darwin's Soldiers used to work in the magnetic materials research division at Pelvanida. After she got fired, she worked as an electrician and a mechanic in Southport.
  • Tex, actually, of Red vs. Blue. She's repaired Sheila at least twice, built a bomb out of spare parts (including some more ... personal items), and even upgraded her own armor while wearing it. Apparently, this was part of her Freelancer training. It tends to be overshadowed by her repeatedly kicking everyones' asses, though.
  • Another downplayed example from the same creators as the above is Ruby, (almost) titular character from RWBY, though normally a Badass Adorable Genki Girl, she's also a complete fangirl for all kinds of high tech weaponry, and personally built and maintains her Giant multi-functional transforming Sinister Scythe
  • There are quite a few female gadgeteers, devisers and general scientists in the Whateley Universe, but special mention goes to Loophole, whose power is 'understanding rules'. Any and all rules.
  • Gaia Online has Sam, the young lady who runs the automotive shop "Sam's Body and Parts".
  • The SCP Foundation has Cassy, the living drawing who wishes she could exist in the 3D world. Her hobby is a car she's building from drawn parts, and when photographed with the camera that shows what the subject wishes to be doing, the result - nearly everyone else's being Nightmare Fuel or Tear Jerker material, or a couple humorous exceptions - has her in the real world... doing exactly the same thing.
  • YouTuber Lost Pause (a.k.a Noble) has Lily the Fox Mechanic as his channel's mascot. Lily was created for Noble by Winged Cloud, in addition to his channel icon.

    Western Animation 
  • Gretchen Grundler and Ashley Spinelli in Recess. Spinelli was taught by her older brother how to work on cars and helped fix a broken down bus in one episode. "Regular, or ratchet?"
  • Sari from Transformers Animated, in a way. Pre-upgrade, she's the Allspark's deputized Angel of Phlebotinum, then post-upgrade she shows a real talent for Cyber-diagnostics.
  • The second season of Transformers: Prime involved finding ancient Cybertronian weapons created by Solus Prime, one of the 13 original Primes created by Primus, who was also the archetype for female Transformers to come. She preferred a big hammer over any old wrench. The 13 original Transformers are treated as semi-divine, communicating from a higher realm and being the patron saint of whatever type of 'bot they're the first of; repair bot Fixit has been known to say "Sweet Solus Prime!" when surprised. Every nigh-magical Artifact of Doom in this series (and maybe others) is her personal handiwork.
  • Molly from Ōban Star-Racers is a competent mechanic. She even figured out the problem with a pod-racer when it had previously stumped a professional.
  • Cover Girl from G.I. Joe (especially in her Devil's Due comic incarnation). After all, when your primary duty is as a missile tank driver, it pays to know how to keep your fighting vehicle in good condition.
  • Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Ahsoka has apparently taken a level of this over the course of the series' sporadic timeline; by the time of the Mortis trilogy of episodes, she's capable of fixing a badly crashed shuttle by herself and modifying it as needed.
  • In Star Wars Rebels, both of the two lead female characters fall into the category. Hera Syndulla, aside from being the Ace Pilot, maintain and repairs her own ships. Sabine Wren is also a talented vehicle mechanic, but her backstory is as a child prodigy genius in developing weapons technology.
  • Gadget Hackwrench, proving that when it comes to ingenuity and mechanical marvels, size doesn't matter. And while she may not be the Ur-Example, she might be one of the Trope Makers, at least where Western Animation is concerned, as there were very few examples in that medium before her creation.
  • Jenny 10 from Dex Hamilton: Alien Entomologist. She maintains the insect's habitats and builds the weapons used by the team to capture new bugs.
  • Scootaloo is shown doing mechanical work on a parade float in the My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic episode "One Bad Apple." Later, in "Twilight Time," she's shown developing these skills further under Twilight Sparkle learning how to disassemble and reassemble unicycles and scooters.
  • Luanne in King of the Hill was bad in beauty school and the community college, but she was good with a wrench. In early episodes, the men in the alley would move out of the way and let her fix cars.
  • Tweak in The Octonauts
  • Asami from Legend of Korra repairs a damaged airship downed in the desert with minimal equipment and then builds a sand-sailer when the airship is destroyed by a giant sandshark.
  • Pearl from Steven Universe has shown good abilities at being a mechanic. She even created a relatively working spaceship from random spare parts Greg had in storage.
  • Shy Violet from Rainbow Brite has a knack for science and mechanics.
  • Ketta from Breadwinners is the super-speedy genius mechanic of the Breadwinners, and always has some sort of new invention up her sleeve.
  • Fifi of Toucan Tecs is the one who provides transport for Zippi and Zac.
  • Charlene "Charley" Davidson in Biker Mice from Mars, the resident mechanic and owner of her own garage "Last Chance". She's also the Token Human.
  • In The Deep, Kaiko is the one who performs all of the maintenance on the Aronnax and its gear. Fonatine is shown to have inherited her mother's knack for pulling things apart and putting them back together.
  • Ready Jet Go!: In One Small Step, Sydney is shown to be an expert mechanic, fixing the super saucer with ease.
  • Perci from Sonic Boom.
  • Amy Wong from Futurama is an engineering student and intern of Farnsworth's who stands as a Subversion of the Science Hero's Babe Assistant; though she's initially implied to be a scholastic underachiever, she's seemingly a competent mechanic and the revival shows that she's no slouch in the Gadgeteer Genius department herself, eventually getting her doctorate in Applied Physics. Leela likewise takes this role in the context of the delivery crew, performing necessary repair work on the spaceship.

    Real Life 
  • Rosie the Riveter from U.S. World War II propaganda. And, obviously, all the female mechanics used in propaganda. Elizabeth Hawes' book about working in an aircraft plant during World War II is titled Why Women Cry; or Wenches With Wrenches.
  • Rosie's Canadian counterpart, Veronica Foster a.k.a Ronnie, the Bren Gun Girl. Makes you jealous of that Bren, hmmm?
  • Back in the day, Her Royal Highness Princess Elizabeth (now Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II) was one. She was trained as an army mechanic during World War II; she served as an ambulance driver, but British vehicles being what they are, she had to be trained as a mechanic too.
  • Rosie's Girls is a day camp for preteen girls that teaches, among other things, welding, carpentry, wiring, engineering, and presumably advanced badassness.
  • Photographer Dave Perry has made an entire career out of shooting models working on hot rods. He admits in the introduction that his inspiration was a young woman working in a desert junkyard.
  • Marilyn Monroe was discovered working in a factory (during World War II).
  • Hedy Lamarr co-invented US Patent 2,292,387 (referring to this), which was used in the blockade on Cuba. Her discoveries have also been used in cell phone technology. note 
  • Mike Holmes has made a point of supporting women going into construction trades on his shows Holmes on Homes and its sequels. He hired Corin "Pinky" Ames on air after she completed an internship with him, and Kate Campbell and Mike's daughter Sherry are regular members of his crew.
  • There are self-help bike repair shops in Germany (and possibly other places in Europe) where you have to repair your bike by yourself and only pay for the materials used. They are run by volunteers who help you if you're stuck, and many of these volunteers are girls who do this in their free time.
  • If Kaylee and Jayne had a daughter, it would be this girl. The best part is that she's not even trying; it's all from her eyes and smile.
  • Germany's Lina van de Mars. Come for the cars, stay for the hot mechanic.
  • Deep under the Russian city of Norilsk is a mine called Mayak. The duty of supervising the fuel, and fueling the machines, falls to Irina Martinets, the "Queen of the Filling Station". In some of the pictures, she is personally pushing some large vehicles and handling oil drums.
  • Ada Lovelace, the first computer programmer. In the first half of the 19th century (she was Lord Byron's daughter). That's right: even before the first computer - she invented algorithms for Charles Babbage's Analytical Engine, which is considered the "ancestor" of modern computers. Note that her mother directed her education towards maths (and music) since she thought the "poetic tendencies" from a typical woman's education of the day were "dangerous" (which is to say she thought poets were trouble; having married Lord Byron, she was probably right)—a course of action with which Lord Byron totally agreed, since young Ada was excellent at maths. Lovelace was nevertheless as feminine as the age required, marrying a count and giving him three children.
  • An all-female auto shop has opened in Mississauga, Ontario.
  • Bertha Benz, wife of automotive pioneer Karl Benz, had already invested a considerable amount of her personal money in Karl's business before they were married (married women weren't permitted to engage in business) and became the first person to drive an automobile a significant distance, taking one of Karl's machines and two of their sons on a sixty-six mile journey from Mannheim to Pforzheim to visit her mother, without telling Karl or the local authorities. After an all-day journey in which she had to refill the car with petroleum solvent bought from pharmacies, unblocked a fuel line with a hat pin, and used a garter to insulate a wire, she telegraphed her husband from Pforzheim. Rather than getting angry, Karl asked Bertha for her suggestions on improvements, (although this may have been a mild case of passive-aggressive "You took it out, so you explain to me what's wrong with it.) including a lower gear for climbing hills and use of treated leather brake pads to increase stopping power. Her exploit led to greatly increased sales and recognition of Benz's machines.
  • Mary Cartwright discovered many solutions to a radar problem which served as a example of the butterfly effect. She and J. L Littlewood realized that as the wavelength of high-frequency waves shortens, their performance ceases to be regular and becomes unpredictable. With their help, engineers from the Radio Detection and Ranging Project worked around the problem by keeping the equipment within predictable ranges.
  • Katherine Johnson (née Coleman), whose calculations of orbital mechanics were critical to the success of the first and subsequent U.S. crewed spaceflights. During her 35-year career at NASA, she earned a reputation for mastering complex manual calculations and helped pioneer the use of computers to perform the tasks.
    • Since these were early computers, many of the astronauts didn't fully trust them. John Glenn refused to trust the computer calculations for his first mission, and insited that Johnson personally check and sign off on them. She was the only one whose word he would take. Note this was 1961 in the American South; NASA had only been desegregated three years earlier.
    • And in another example, her (male) boss's (misogynistic) boss was pushing him to finish a report, who finally said "Katherine should finish the report, she's done most of the work anyway." It was the first report from that division signed off by a woman.
  • Grace Hopper was this for software engineers. She found the original software bug (it was literally a dead moth in the circuitry), wrote the first compiler, wrote what may have been the first case of open-source software, and was the main designer behind COBOL.note  She also served 42 years in the United States Navy, is the first women to be awarded an Admiral's star, and was the only living woman to see a US Navy warship named after her.
  • Lady Catherine Sarah Percy, eldest daughter of the 12th Duke of Northumberland, professional gunsmith and motorcycle mechanic:
    I'm dying to get a machine-gun mount so I can rest a .22 on one and shoot rabbits.


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