A Trip Down Memory Lane

Mitchell 1 Old Repair ManualI wanted to do a little something different with this blog. Instead of a product tip or a how-to, I would rather take a trip down memory lane to a place where you or others of my generation might fondly remember. Believe it or not, there was once a time when there were no computers, tablets or cell phones. Everything had to be looked up in these things called “books,” and you could only hope to find something similar enough to what you needed to use as a reference point.

It was quite amazing on those rare occasions when the “actual” information you needed could be found. In many shops, you would be lucky to find a few heavily oil stained books, the pages worn thin from use. It seemed like there was always someone going around looking for “the book”.

Still, in my case, and I am sure the same is true for others, it proved to be great fun to simply take the book and look through the various procedures and pictures just to see how engines and other parts were put together and worked. I still have service manuals from the 1930’s and 1940s, which is even well before my time. I spent hours looking through these manuals as I was coming up in the service and repair industry.

All of this got me to wondering what technicians today like to look. Do you still have an interest to go thumb through old print manuals? I know the web has so much more to offer and most of that can be accessed through a cell phone. Yet, perhaps there is a certain nostalgic experience in looking at the old print manuals. For me, it is still interesting to look through the old 2-cycle Detroit Diesel engines or an old Hall Scott gas engine that was in a 1950 Peterbilt fire truck I used to work on.

But how about you? Do you enjoy browsing through service information new or old? If so, what are you looking at to feed your interest and curiosity in this ever-evolving industry?

Please share your experiences with us in the comments section below!

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About the Author

Jake Schell

Jake Schell is an editorial consultant with Mitchell 1. Previously, he served as Product Manager for the Commercial Vehicle Group from 2002 to 2023. Prior to joining Mitchell 1, Jake spent 20 years as a technician. He holds a Chevrolet Master certification in the transmission category as well as ASE certifications in both cars and trucks.

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