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4.6 out of 5 stars20
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 2 November 2013
I ordered my copy in the belief that it was written for the layperson, so that we could try and comprehend what made man's most powerful lunar rocket, tick.

Unfortunately this is an exact reprint copy of the original NASA document and therefore full of rather technical phrases and diagrams, it was never intended as a laypersons guide to the Saturn V.

Chapter by chapter it discusses in emense detail how each stage of the rocket was constructed,and how everything actually worked, right down to the electronics that made the whole thing tick.

Nowhere in the entire text has it been simplified for us mere mortals, this is exactly as the crew of Apollo 8 would have read it, with their background in physics and aeronautics.

There will be no other reference material as concise or complete as this one, if you are able or willing to knuckle down and learn the intricacies of Von Brauns masterpiece, then it will be a great read, but if your concentration levels are limited, you will fail to get to the end of chapter one.

Without doubt the most complete document on the construction and operation of the Apollo Moon Rocket, but do not expect it to be an easy read. ITS NOT.
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on 28 November 2013
I bought this as I wanted a greater insight into the way in which the 'hardware' was used on the Apollo missions.
I wasn't dissapointed, unfortunately I had to end up being selective in the parts which i read as a lot of it didn't make much sense. Luckily I spent 27 yrs at sea so had a good grounding in navigation, gyros etc which was analogous to a lot of the information contained in this manual.
Overall I would say that I gleaned a lot of useful information and it has most certainly assisted me in gaining the deeper understanding that I wanted.
Hopefully someone will have looked at my wish list for Christmas and I will find the one for the Lunar Module and Command Module under the tree.
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on 1 February 2014
Amazing detail and information that makes you realise what a superhuman effort went into putting man on the moon, I also have the spacecraft series of dvds on the subject which are recommended for 50 plus year olds whose youth was at this time in the sixties. Very nostagic.
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on 19 July 2013
A sheer masterpiece of technical information from the golden space age era. There was nothing like the launch of a Saturn V rocket and this manual gives a real insight into the extreme complex workings of the rocket. Yes it may not be to every ones taste, but if you really enjoyed the Saturn V they you may like this. I don't regret this purchase.
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on 27 February 2014
This is a straight print-out of the NASA manual supplied to the astronauts so they knew what made their rocket tick.

There are various versions and revisions available for free on the internet - so what one pays for here is the printing and the glossy cover.

So it was pretty annoying to find four of the seven index pages absent - such a highly technical book suffers a lot if it loses its index.

I note (now) that others have had the same problem - so I'll just print the missing four pages and add them, rather than going through all the hassle of returning the book and, presumably, getting another with the same fault.

To repeat - a wonderful document messed up by third parties - three stars because it's incomplete - should have six for content!
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on 28 November 2014
This is an on demand reprint of the NASA manual for their iconic rocket that took men to the Moon. When you look at the complexity of the machine it is amazing that this almost all worked without the electronics that we are so familiar with today. I would have given this five stars but the print lacks a little crispness due to less than perfect original and the index stops in the early "L" section. Nevertheless it gives a fascinating insight into an amazing engineering achievement. worth every penny!
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on 25 March 2013
This isn't one of those faux-Haynes Manuals which have appeared in recent years covering everything from the Titanic to the USS Enterprise. This is a reproduction of the actual manual which was produced during the Apollo programme for the astronauts to familiarise themselves with the systems of the largest launch vehicle ever successfully flown. This one is specific to Apollo 8 and is packed with flowcharts, wiring diagrams, graphs and everything else. A random sentence from the chapter on the S-IVB (and if you don't know what that is then this book is NOT for you!): "During filling operations, the prevalves are allowed to stay in the open position to allow a deadhead type chilldown of the feed system hardware (low pressure feed duct and engine pump), allowing temperature stabilization of this hardware prior to activation of the recirculation chilldown system." Bet you never knew that...

Don't let that sentence put you off, though - one of the most fascinating parts is the nine-page chart listing what actions the crew would have to take in the event of something going wrong!

There was a peculiar error in my copy (though presumably not limited to just mine) in that only the first three pages of the index are present, covering up to the beginning of the L's (hence only a four-star rating). This isn't a critical problem though as the index is available on line if you search for it.

Highly recommended for those with an interest in manned spaceflight who want to know more than the basic details normally available in books directed at the general public.
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on 23 March 2015
Interesting read on the manual that gave those who went to the moon the training reference needed.

Don't let the 'missing pages' put you off, this manuals worth the money, and if they ever dust off a Saturn V and you happen to have the opportunity to be on the flight crew (despite tablets and PDFs there just something in a hard copy) Put this on your book shelf ready.
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on 14 March 2014
Good book but I can't help thinking to myself why an Apollo astronaut would pull this out to read. Once they're in space, most of the rocket has gone anyway. If there's an emergency, I think they'd have more things on their mind than digging out the manual. Maybe I'm missing the point...
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on 13 July 2014
Fascinating. Not an easy read because I'm not a trained astronaut who knows all the jargon, but interesting none the less. Have a look at 'How Apollo flew to the moon' for an easier read and a broader subject matter ie. The Saturn 5 and everything else.
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