Yes. I’m a nerd who reads the manual.
I read the manual about three times in the course of owning a product. First, I sit down and read it when I first get the thing, to see if there’s anything I don’t already know about whatever it is. In the case of a digital camera, there invariably is some little widget or button that does something really sweet. In the case of, say, a toaster, not so much. I will often refer to the manual to troubleshoot something I can’t figure out. Almost never does the Owners Manual help me out in that case, other than to find out the name that the manufacturer calls the thing that ain’t working, so I can Google it. The third instance that I look at the manual is to figure out how to get service- both standard, and warranty.
There are some very interesting things about the manuals for various products- it’s a funny feeling of, oh, say, using the Staff bathroom in a restaurant (a favorite trick of food critics to see how clean the place really is), and well, kind of the morning after… you’ve already made the purchase, the manufacturer is assuming, and we get to see how they’re going to treat us now that there’s no turning back. From a Marketing standpoint, it used to be where they put the least of their resources- bad translations, no help, details clearly put in place by the Legal Department rather than anyone who really cares about the user.
The other interesting thing is that you get a peek at just how complicated, sophisticated, or just plain interesting a product is. This is where all the stuff that doesn’t fit into the slick brochure has to go… for instance- the starting procedure on the Enertia is quite interesting, and clearly designed from a safety standpoint. You’re going to see some copy about “Sophisticated Electronics and Rider Safety” in the brochure, here’s exactly what that means.
So pour a beer and sit in the hammock… and take a look through some of the interesting highlights of what you get after the sale is made. I’ve broken this up into a section for each bike to keep it from turning into a huge post and let me put up some readable screenshots. Here are the links: Part 3- Documentation (Brammo) – Part 3- Documentation (Zero)