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Spotting an ORIGINAL Owners Manual VS a Reproduction...

A question for those in the know....if anyone knows....

My question is HOW do you spot an ORIGINAL owners manual for a 911 from that either came with a 911 or could be bought from the dealer that year FROM a REPRODUCTION

The obvious things are :

1. Says REPRINT (most dont, some do)

2. WKD before 1981??? The earliest i can find WKD on the front page is 1981, before that they have no WKD unless added during a current reprint

3. Very bad quality

4. General wear and tear and yellowing of pages

I am told that the ONLY way to spot a reprint besides the four things above above, is down to the quality of the pictures! I am told that the reprints, there is not much detail of the dashboard and footmats, but in the originals the quality is very good!

There is nothing wrong with a reproduction, in fact any manual to have for your car is better than nothing, but what I don't want to do is pay far to much for a reproduction.

I have the following manuals in the picture below, which I have collected over the years. Bought them all on the basis they are "original", but now that I look at them, im not convinced by the lack of quality of the VDO gauges!!!! we know what they look like as we look at them evey day lol

If anyone has an 100% original manual from 65 to 72 when the dials changed to black (in the manuals), PLEASE can you check the quality of the white dials....and if possible post some pictures????


To be clear in the pictures below, I am not saying if the middle 2 manuals are reproductions OR are original, so dont use the white dial flaws as your only guide for those that dont know. The picture quality of the dashboard, is very good, so based on the list above I currently believe them to be original despsite the flaws!!! Please guide me any which way

The manuals in the list are

1) 1982 911 : 99% original, it is unused, but looks to be right, i have check the whole thing. I put 99% as it is unused

2) 1969 911 : Im not sure....besides the dials, the rest looks good....!!

3) 1971 911 : Im not sure...besides the dials, the rest looks good...!!

4) 1975 911 : 100% Original, well used with stamps from being issued in 1975

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Last edited by strictly; 05-12-2019 at 01:06 AM..
Old 05-12-2019, 01:04 AM
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I believe the originals have black plastic bindings whereas the reprints are white/clear.
Old 05-12-2019, 04:21 AM
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Interesting theory, i think for the moment lets keep that idea in the background and put it to the test as other comments pop up.

Off the 4 manuals above, funny enough the one in black spiral is supposed to be an original, but for sure the bottom one which is 100% original has a white/clear spiral. Perhaps its the other way round!!

This ebay item is interesting...

https://www.ebay.ie/itm/1968-PORSCHE-911-OWNERS-MANUAL-NEVER-CIRCULATED-STORED-FOR-DECADES-NOS-ORGINAL/293071106794?hash=item443c6632ea:g:-4IAAOSwv0tVcQOV

I have noticed the white dials have a consistant VDO written on the gauges....also interesting it has a white/clear spiral....

If anyone else has a 100% original manual, ideally from 69 to 71, but anything from 65 to 72 will at least give some ideas,

Basically i will sell the manuals i have, but if they are reproduction then I will sell them as that (because im a good guy =P) but the originals ones will in all fairness be original. I reckon my 69 and 71 manuals are reproduction, but lets see what we discover!! all funds are to buy back my 911 i had to sell because i run out of cash. All true, currently just sharing a 74 with a mate who owns 90% of it!! Talk about rock bottom lol



Old 05-12-2019, 07:25 AM
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I think you have to also consider that you could buy manuals from dealers long after the car was sold.

I bought a manual for my 1979 from Stoddard's in 1993 or 1994. I have their catalogs and price lists from then, and they list manuals all the way back to 1965. That 1965 manual would have set you back $19.95. A 1967 911S manual was much more - $50.11. I paid $16.95 for my SC.

I don't see anything in my manual that suggests it's a repro. Very high quality glossy paper, photos are excellent. Has a white wire spiral binding.

Mark
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Old 05-12-2019, 09:11 AM
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Here is what I have. Top is a '71 manual, bought as NOS a number of years ago. Bottom is what came with my car when I bought it in 1977 ('72 my). Both appear to be original.





As always, Pelican reduces the size of my pictures when I upload them. If anyone can tell me how to avoid that annoyance, let me know.
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Last edited by Trackrash; 05-12-2019 at 09:14 AM..
Old 05-12-2019, 09:11 AM
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I bought one earlier this year from Stoddard for my 76 930. Quality is brilliant. Does not indicate anywhere that it is a reprint. In fact the date on the 2nd page is 11/75...which suits me just fine as this is the build date of my car. The giveaway that it is a reprint is the new condition and the clear plastic spiral binding. I would have thought that the original had metal.
Old 05-12-2019, 09:50 AM
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FWIW, the spiral binding on both of mine is plastic.
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Old 05-12-2019, 10:13 AM
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Well guys, thanks for contributing.

So it seems, that unless anyone says anything to the contrary, that the bad quality and variations in VDO script in the early manuals, was just how it was back then!! at least for 1969 and 1971 (trackrash, we match on that manual, my 71 manual, is also a 911E....wish I had the car, lol!! enjoy)

Personally, i would not care if i had an "original" manual or not, as long as I had one! With the prices were they are, then its nice to have when the cars are sold.

Funny, this all stemmed from me, not wanting to sell something someone which was not what it was. Which then after a couple of beers, snowballed into this all out research lol, but of course the beauty of a forum is it is for everyone's benefit.

Interesting comment about the spirals I had not considered, that the first editions (I will stop calling them original, lol) would off most likely had metal spirals. EDIT (After trackrashes comment above, i must of wrote at the same time). Then the metal spiral thing is a myth, or at least PRE 71

Any more comments feel free to keep them coming, if it all means we can navigate the ebay minefield then that is a good thing for all.

Last edited by strictly; 05-12-2019 at 11:00 AM..
Old 05-12-2019, 10:58 AM
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Just one bump, to see if there are any further opinions....then I am going to move on....and be happy i have so many manuals, lol!!

Old 05-14-2019, 12:34 PM
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