RE: Technical Writing (mechanical - automotive)

Subject: RE: Technical Writing (mechanical - automotive)
From: bryan -dot- westbrook -at- amd -dot- com
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 1 Nov 2000 08:52:09 -0600

I recently left a job where I actually did write automotive manuals for the
US Army. Here are a few things that I learned. Some of this, of course,
applies to any tech writing.

Get as many sources of information as you can: specs, wiring diagrams,
assembly drawings, vendor specs for components.

Talk to the engineers as much as possible.

If you can, talk to mechanics who do the pre-shipping repair work.

Don't blindly take anyone's word for anything.

By all means, tear one down as much as you can, and get an experienced
mechanic to walk you through the rest.

Make sure that you are using a production model and not a prototype (the
voice of painful experience on this one).

A wiring schematic can be your best friend in writing troubleshooting.
Highlight the wires as you address them and make sure they are all covered.

As far as the electrical system goes, get real familiar with a multimeter.

Never short circuit a 24 volt current directly into the ground wire of a
circuit board. :-)

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Archimede Ziviello [SMTP:archimede -dot- ziviello -at- cannondale -dot- com]
> Sent: Tuesday, October 31, 2000 2:34 PM
> Subject: Technical Writing (mechanical - automotive)
> Please discuss the processes you go through as writers, managers, product
> dev specialist in preparing service manuals for automotive or motorsports
> products.

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