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No printed instructions for a kit Answered

Would not having printed instructions put you off buying a kit ? I put together a coke can Stirling engine kit, but I don't know whether to print instructuctions or have them on the website. Printing them myself would probably increase the cost by a fair bit as my cheap inkjet printer really eats expensive ink (must by new printer - but they are evil).  The assembly isn't really complicated.

Your opinions please!


If I felt there was "any" form of complexity to the kit (something new to me, that is), yes, it would definitely make me hesitate. How hard (or expensive) is it to print of an instruction sheet and / or copy it ? Suggestion: fool about with the coloring scheme of the instructions (or make it gray scale if you can) until it doesn't have much color in it).

It would put me off for buying a kit, and i think online instructions are simpler to use and such. So yea....

Thanks everyone for sharing your opinions, I think I'll stick with the online instructions for now.

Just make it clear for the buyer beforehand, so that he can be absolutely aware that the instructions are online-only. Or, if you can, give an option, by charging some extra, if they still need a printed one.

Guys who buy coke can Stirling engines will likely have no problem with that at all.

Some sites (Solarbotics springs to mind) post freely-downloadable instructions alongside the catalogue listings. It doesn't seem to harm their business.

For your business, though, I'd imagine that a free set of instructions without a purchase could harm sales of the kits. I don't see a problem with PDFs being emailed to customers after the sale.

> Would not having printed instructions put you off buying a kit ?
.  In general, yes, but if the kit is simple enough and cheap enough, it wouldn't be a big problem. Having the instructions available on the 'Net is pretty much a given nowadays.
> my cheap inkjet printer really eats expensive ink
.  I've had real good luck buying used laser printers at local business supply/stationery/printing stores. B&W-only, that should be all you need. I trade-in the old one with $100-200 dollars every 3-4 years.Most times, the toner cart that comes with the used machine will last me through a few hundred pages, but I did get one that only lasted about 20.
.  A large toner cartridge can be expensive (a cartridge for a small, personal laser can be cheaper than a 4-color ink cart), but they last a very long time and won't dry up if you don't use it for a few months.