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Home✈️Aircraft🚁HelicopterHelicopter Main Discussion › Manufacturers read this! I'm sick of not getting manuals.
05-24-2007 01:14 AM  13 years ago
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Eury

rrProfessor

Dover NH USA

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Manufacturers read this! I'm sick of not getting manuals.
I have a message for anyone who puts out a heli kit. I paid hundreds of dollars for your product. Provide me with a printed manual. If I get your stuff for free, feel free to refer me to a website, or have me look on a CD, but if I am paying for it, I deserve a printed manual, I should not have to waste my time, money, paper, and toner correcting your cheap mistake.

Yes I have a computer. A couple of them, in fact. I even have a notebook that is in my workshop. However, I do not want it on my bench while I am building. It's worth a hell of a lot more than your kit is, and I don't want it getting damaged or knocked around. Also, do you expect me to carry that computer with me to the field? It's handy to have a manual tucked in my radio box so I can verify settings and assemblies. Can't do that with a PDF.

Don't try to spin it off as an advantage. I've heard it all, you can update it regularly, you can put nicer pictures in, even videos. All of that is worthless. TT and Hirobo manuals are perfect, and they don't have any multimedia content, and I can fit them in my radio box. If someone wants an electronic manual (which I do like to have as well), they can download it for free, however, it doesn't let you off the hook for producing an incomplete product!

What brings this rant on? I'm building a new T-Rex 600n, and right now my laser printer is churning away behind me. Now I realize that this is an early kit, and future ones will have a manual, so Align is off the hook on this one, but this is a disturbing trend. My last kit didn't have one either. I had a Quick a few years back that didn't have one either. That is BS. I will not buy your product if you can't see your way clear to put a manual in the box. It is that simple. I've had manufacturers try to spin it as a positive, it's not. It's you being lazy, and not staying on top of your business and ripping your customers off. I'm having to assemble a bunch of tiny pieces, I deserve a piece of paper to look at.
Nick Crego

Citizen #0168
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05-24-2007 01:26 AM  13 years ago
Portblock

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Van Nuys, CA

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This is very intersting, I have been put in charge of putting a manual together for a project, and a few people said, hey just stick in on a CD, and they can print it. I must admit, I was onboard for it. However, after reading your email, it has me looking at it in another way. I will still make the manual for the CD, but now I am going to look at some printing solutions as well.

I must say, I agree, and thanks.
The voices in my head can beat up the voices in your head.
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05-24-2007 01:32 AM  13 years ago
GREYEAGLE

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Flat Land's

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WELL ! PUT !
Well put indeed Nick ! It's being done to reduce manufacturing cost's and I think it's a bunch of Hooey ! I suspect their is a lauguage barrier.

Nothing better than to recieve a detailed manual, along with isometric prints showing details, specific sizes in reference too part number's and sub- assemblies.

In many cases with drawings you find error's and poor detail, errors between the manual and drawing, and are left to quess or try to pick it off a lousey grainey - grey tone - photograph.

Seem's to be the most common weakest link amoung them. Must be a real shortage of technical writers that can accuratley decribe the assemblie scope.

What really drives me nut's is when I must go to a private - web developed by others, to obtain the info - which should of been ammended by the Mfg.

When I can't discover the info I need I just dial up my RR' buddies or punt with what makes sense.

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05-24-2007 01:34 AM  13 years ago
z11355

rrMaster

New England

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it depends on the project.

in the *real* world where people build helicopters, I would not
want have to have a computer on the bench, etc etc.
The *task* doesn't require a computer so putting the manual only
on CD forces the issue.

And really, just eat or pass on the cost of printing a manual but
*listen to what the customer wants*.
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05-24-2007 01:51 AM  13 years ago
mcfast

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Quebec Quebec Canada

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A printed manual is the only way to go for me to!
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05-24-2007 02:01 AM  13 years ago
greg

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Yorkville, IL

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GREYEAGLE,
Great idea building on top of eggcrate material.....bolts, nuts, screws, all stay put and protects the mechanics as well. Best idea I have seen in quite some time.
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05-24-2007 02:18 AM  13 years ago
GREYEAGLE

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Flat Land's

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Thanx Greg!
It's most excellent - Especially when laying out small subassemblies or when that 2mm C- clip squirts away, they fall dead on the foam, then I just pick it up with my magnetic scribe and go again.

Hard to believe but never lost a part !

The Jazzpurr cat does have a affinity for plastic bags though !

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05-24-2007 02:20 AM  13 years ago
classic

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All over the place!

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Remember, ALL cost associated with the kits ARE passed down to the consumer One way or another. Yes, I prefer a paper manual also, but it won't keep me from ordering a heli if its one I really want.

However, if I am on the fence between two differant helis equally, the choice is between two differant brands, cost on both is the same, and the only differance is one has a paper manual and one does not, then guess which I am going to go with!
Which is worse, ignorance or apathy? I don't know and I don't care!
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05-24-2007 02:21 AM  13 years ago
lperagallo

rrApprentice

Westfield, Indiana, USA

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Just remember, It's easier and quicker to update an electronic manual then a printed one. I work for a major publisher and fixing an error is much quicker in the electronic world then printed material. If I print 5,000 copies of a manual and a user finds an error, I don't throw away the copies with a mistake, I add an erata page and wait until the next printing to fix teh printing. Most people ignore the erata and complian about the error. In the electronic version, I make a quick fix and all new sales are up to date. No complaints, no mistakes.

Everybody wants to complain about the high price of kits. It is cheaper to provide maunals via CD or PDF. It's even cheaper to make you go to the web. What do you want? You want a less expensive kit AND a manual that's correct. Putting a manual on CD or PDF allows a user to magnify an image, getting an up close view of what they are looking at. You can't do that if you are looking at a printed copy.

I for one vote for a web based manual I can store on my PC or get continuous updates on when erata is generated.

My 2 cents worth.
Twin Bergen 44Magnums FBL Wren NW44s - Kero start
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05-24-2007 02:25 AM  13 years ago
RappyTappy

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Encinitas, CA

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Save Trees - Burn CD's! Still buyin' and flyin' then crashing and cryin'
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05-24-2007 02:27 AM  13 years ago
philthewrench

rrApprentice

Greenwood Lake NY

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Love printed manuals but for a reason that may or may not be unique to just me.....

My free time almost non-existent, so if I get a new piece of equipment I can open the box, look it over and grab the manual. Over the next few days I can leave it in the bathroom and get some reading done when i gotta be there anyway. I can usually read a good sized manual once or twice before I even start to assemble/install.

So yes, I know, I have problems. But I can't be totally alone. So please put a printed manual in the box!!!!

Phil
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05-24-2007 02:29 AM  13 years ago
Furious Predator

rrProfessor

Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

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printed manuals for me too. i like to correct mistakes and make notes, and also not have to carry my laptop around.Shawn
Team Leisure-Tech
Team HelixRC
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05-24-2007 02:53 AM  13 years ago
fritzthecat

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Virginia Beach, VA

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Hmmm, in real life aviation, the trend is away from paper manuals. The Navy Aviation Enterprise is currently converting all manuals to pdf files. On aircraft maintenance is by Panasonic Toughbook laptops with IETMs (Integrated Electronic Technical Manual).
It takes an average of over a year to update paper books with non-dangerous errors. Life threatening stuff gets updated in a few weeks usually. Also add up the cost of updating manuals. You need to contract out the printing, mail the pages to everybody that has a copy and then provide accounting to make sure the updates are installed. We are talking several U$10,000 to update one manual. Multiply by 1000's of books and update several times a year. Gets expensive.

However, I too prefer a hardcopy with my heli kits. Best would be to provide a basic manual on paper and animated/video instructions on DVD.

Fritz

'Send Money, Women and Guns!'
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05-24-2007 03:00 AM  13 years ago
rroback

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Irvine (UCI), Ca

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Don't need no stinkin paper manuals, I have my laptop right beside me while building.Rhett..... I can't fly, but the Profi sure can.
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05-24-2007 03:00 AM  13 years ago
Portblock

rrVeteran

Van Nuys, CA

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Ok, I have a potentialy dumb idea, I know it might be dumb, so no flames, just opinions.

What about selling the printed manual? Heli comes with CD manual, and $20 more for printed, bound one? or have it available for purchase online? IE: go to manufactures site, pay for a printed one to be shipped?
The voices in my head can beat up the voices in your head.
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05-24-2007 03:06 AM  13 years ago
A. Bundy

rrElite Veteran

Aurora,IL. 30W/SW of Chicago

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+1 for manual in hand.CDs blow.
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05-24-2007 03:19 AM  13 years ago
Cornster

rrApprentice

Medford, MA USA

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Portblock

Interesting idea, but it has one major flaw. The consumer still paid hundreds of dollars for a kit and now has to pay additional money for the manual.

One option would be to make the printed manual available free, just pay shipping. It would still benifit the manufacturer, as not ALL folks are going to request a manual. But it still appeals to the folks who want the paper manual.

Although, I am still a strong supporter of including the paper manual in the box.....nothing worse than having to wait to build something that you already waited to recieve. Well....I take that back, the only thing worse is recieving said item and not having a paper manual to build it. BUT, and it is a BIG but, getting paper manual that is worthless is pretty much self-descriptive (yes TT, update your manuals PLEASE).

What happens to those folks, and there are many, who don't have a computer or even the sense to use one?
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05-24-2007 03:44 AM  13 years ago
CWALDO123

rrApprentice

Germantown , Tn - Shelby

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You Go Eury..Im with you on the manual thing. I can understand maybe a update but the whole friggen manual. Thats CrapHirobo Evo 50 ,Jr9303 ((( Are Those Things Hard To Fly ?? Nah !! Snicker )))
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05-24-2007 03:58 AM  13 years ago
Portblock

rrVeteran

Van Nuys, CA

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Cornster, I was thinking the same thing, there is a guy at our field who does not own a computer, much less use one, and he is a damn good builder, and pilot.

I was thinking from the perspective of the manufacture, $10 manual, across 10,000 kits adds up to $100,000. not to mention the man power (employee salary)

I do agree, dont get me wrong, I like my manuals, I take them to the field, in the car, etc... and I am an avid computer guy with several laptops, but sometimes, plain old paper manual wins out.

Perhaps if they wanted to maintain budget, and costs, they could stop making the fancy box graphics, and spend the money on the manual?
The voices in my head can beat up the voices in your head.
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05-24-2007 04:36 AM  13 years ago
BLUETHUNDER

rrVeteran

Glass City

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No Printed Manual Is A Ripoff!!!
When I bought my first RealFlight 2 Sim from GreatPlanes
it did not come with a manual? I was not going to waste
my paper and a $30.00 black ink cartridge to print what
should have came with my $235.00 FlightSim in the first
place. I called GP about this and they provided a copy
free of charge! Companys save $ money by not
having to print paper manuals, with a CD they only have
to burn it once and copy it or make it available online.
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Home✈️Aircraft🚁HelicopterHelicopter Main Discussion › Manufacturers read this! I'm sick of not getting manuals.
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