This week’s selection is “Machinery’s Handbook, Pocket Companion” by Richard Pohanish and Christopher McCauley.
If this book sounds familiar, it should. It — or a version of it — was selected as our book of the week back in 2018. But that book was the full edition; this is the pocket edition, and there’s good reasons to make use of it.
But first, what is the Machinery’s Handbook?
It’s a very old book, first written in 1914, over one hundred years ago! Since then it’s undergone a number of revised editions, and the current edition is numbered 31. The original author, Erik Oberg, passed away in 1951, giving you an idea of how old this tome really is.
The book contains a wide variety of topics on mechanics, and is the ideal companion for anyone designing a mechanical device. Some of the topics covered include:
- Mathematics Mechanics and Strength of Materials
- Properties, Treatment, and Testing of Materials
- Dimensioning, Gauging, and Measuring
- Tooling and Toolmaking
- Machining Operations
- Manufacturing Processes
- Threads and Threading
- Gears, Splines and Cams
- Machine Elements
- Measuring Units
To give you an idea of this book’s notoriety, it actually has its own Wikipedia page.
Even though the original edition is old and has been updated, the fact is that the physics of mechanics does not change over time — fortunately for us all. Thus bolts work the same way they did one hundred years ago, and design advices still holds true.
The original work contained near 3,000 pages, and that’s quite a lot of information, particularly if you are in a workshop needing some design specifications.
That’s why this week we’re recommending the pocket edition of the Machinery’s Handbook, which is smaller and easier to tote around. Perhaps an even more ideal approach would be to purchase the Kindle edition, where it can be easily displayed and searched electronically from a lightweight ebook reader or smartphone.
It’s also the 31st edition, containing the latest updates.
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