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Popular Mechanics used to release an annual book containing all their shop tips and tricks, appropriately called “Popular Mechanics Shop Notes.”  I own several original volumes from the ’30s and ’40s which make for entertaining bedtime reading.  Now the folks at Lee Valley Tools have reprinted every volume between 1905 and 1930 at a low cost — $7.50 each or $32.50 for 5-year increments.

You can find used original copies at around the same price or more, depending on condition and year. There’s even one copy fully scanned on Google Books, from 1921.  Topics vary from year to year and decade to decade, but each book contains at least a few items that’ll solve a problem or spur a solution — a highly recommended bit of reading.

Popular Mechanics Shop Notes [Lee Valley]


4 Responses to A Good Read: Popular Mechanics Shop Notes

  1. Pete says:

    Thanks for pointing this out. I’m REALLY tempted to buy the whole set. They look very appealing to a semi-luddite like me.

  2. Rob says:

    I love the old, practical knowledge and problem solving that these things contain. I might buy the whole set too.

  3. Larry says:

    Oh, Man! I just discovered this blog a few months ago and while I expected some outdated sales and dead links, I feel I really missed the boat on this one! These books are no longer available from Lee Valley. So sad! Wonder if Lindsay’s might have em?

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