These books have been discontinued. The set of 4 is on sale to clear existing stock. Regular price was $75.
This series of books entranced both adults and children from the time the first one was published by Popular Mechanics Co. in 1913 until the television age. They were handed down from generation to generation, appreciating in value as the years went by. A reasonable copy of one of the original volumes can sell for several hundred dollars today, but it is hard to find them in good condition because they were much thumbed over the years.
Published in that wonderful era of our history when people were much more independent and tended to make things rather than buy them, the four books have 3849 articles and 3917 illustrations for thousands of projects using new or recycled materials.
Because we expect these books to get the same sort of use as the originals, we make them from acid-free paper with a sewn binding in a sturdy linen hard cover; a book that will lie open at a chosen page, ideal for a project book.
When these books were published (from 1913 to 1925), a major part of the population was agricultural and another major part was industrial, since the service sector had not yet become as significant as it is today.
Both groups were familiar with tools and there was an assumed practical knowledge level that does not exist today. Similarly, the effects of toxic materials such as lead were not yet fully understood. As a result, some of the projects include procedures and materials that would certainly raise eyebrows today. However, the vast majority involved straightforward woodworking and basic metalworking skills, both subjects that were regularly taught in schools of the day.
One of the great merits of the series is that it provides a wide range of creative material for anyone wanting children to master these basic skills in an interesting and constructive way. But these are not just children's books; their projects range from a simple knitting spool (made from shingle nails and a discarded thread spool) to ice boats and snow machines.
They are of interest to all ages.
Each book is hardcover, 6" x 9-3/4", 460 pages.
Some products are no longer available.