Tuesday, 15 May 2012

The Haynes Manual

Back in my youth when I was doing up cars the Haynes manual was both a bible and life safer allowing me to do all manner of jobs that I would have had to pay a fortune to have done by a mechanic.

On my 1972 Mini Clubman Estate for example I changed the petrol tank, fitted new valves, tuned the carb, replaced the rear sub-frame, put in new suspension - to name but a few things - and during all these jobs my trusty Haynes manual would always be within grabbing distance to see me through.  I spent so much time with that Mini manual that I decided I couldn't part with it and it's now sat boxed up in the loft, coming out to remind me of times gone by each time we try to clear out old stuff, but each time going back in!

So, with all my history of worshipping Haynes, you could say I was more than a little bit excited waiting for my VW Camper Haynes manual to arrive after winning one on eBay.

The day came, the manual came through the door, and I think over the coming days I spent hours reading about and looking at pictures of how to do all the jobs I had coming up - I was in heaven!

But my excitement over the manual very quickly wore off once I got started on the jobs.  It turns out the world has moved on since I was 20 and last did lots of mechanical work on a vehicle. Although the Haynes manual is still a great reference guide it's nowhere near as good as something very simple that most people now have available in their home - GOOGLE!

Everything you could ever want to know about doing any job on a VW campervan has been documented in great detail on the internet, with colour photos and discussions about how to do things better/quicker/cheaper. And for most jobs you can even find videos showing you step by step how to do it. It's wonderful and all this detail is far more useful than a couple of paragraphs description and the odd black and white photo.  Very quickly I found my Haynes manual deep in a pile of papers to sort, while my Android tablet was coming outside to the van with me, assisting me in ways that Haynes never could.

The Haynes manual is still useful to have and flick though, but it's not much use any more in reality - RIP my Haynes VW Camper manual...

1 comment:

  1. VERY excited to find you! I love campers and GG's Pea Soup is a beauty. We have a 1980 Toyota Hiace called Betty. I would love a VW (feel disloyal writing that..) but they're pricey unless like you, you get one that needs work and do it up yourself. Sadly I don't have any of the necessary skills! Look forward to seeing how it goes. Best of luck.
    Also rather envious of your lego camper. I am very tempted to get one...