building instructions

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A building instruction is a chronological collection of instructions or information that is used to make or manufacture a specific item or object.


Basically, one speaks of building instructions in two different areas. A distinction must be the technical construction manual, the content corresponding to the original meaning, so a manual is to something build , and the instructions in science of genetic engineering .

Technical building instructions

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The instructions of a technical building instruction usually consist of textual individual instructions, which are often supplemented by photos or drawings, and describe individual work steps of a sensibly structured procedure. In principle, building instructions can also consist exclusively of texts or drawings, often these are sectional drawings.

A construction manual typically consists of these structured instructions , a list of all materials required for construction , as well as an overview of the tools , machines and devices that are required to implement the construction instructions and to manufacture the item.

Instructions for completing a product, such as assembling a piece of furniture, are not assembly instructions in the original sense, but pure assembly instructions, instructions for use , or operating instructions. Even exploded drawings , as they are often included with technical devices, are not assembly instructions, but merely one Schematic representation of the product, which is used, for example, to identify spare parts.

Building instructions enable the user to build the desired item or the object described, using only the instructions, the required (building) material and the necessary aids, without having to use any prefabricated parts or assemblies.

The transition between handicraft instructions and building instructions is fluid. In model making in particular, instructions that are as detailed and exact as possible are required. Instructions that describe the construction of simpler objects and are easy to understand are often referred to as handicraft instructions. In contrast, extensive and more complex instructions with dimensionally accurate construction plans are already construction instructions.

For almost every technical area there are ready-made building instructions that can be used by every more or less experienced user. From instructions that describe the manufacture of technical devices or electronic components, to construction instructions for the manufacture of everyday objects, to assembly instructions for single-family houses , almost everything is available thanks to the Internet as a source of information . Many of these instructions are even offered free of charge.


In late antiquity and in the Middle Ages , building instructions represented a master's wealth of knowledge . The instructions for building certain elements on a building or workpiece were only passed on verbally from the builder to the journeymen . These had to be learned literally by heart . In many guilds , only those who could freely recite a certain number of complicated building instructions could pass the master's examination . This procedure served to preserve skills and artistry and was at the same time an early form of safety regulations, because only those who worked very precisely and based on the experience of previous masters could ensure the required statics and stability.

This information related to the concept of the construction manual in the original sense of the word, which was about instructing someone to build something. And built almost exclusively been in pre-industrial buildings and fortifications . In the other trades and in connection with the manufacture of technical devices, one did not originally speak of building , but of making . A finger ring, a hat, a belt, a pair of shoes, but also a basket, a chest, a cart, a bench or a cupboard were made. The professions were named accordingly .

Genetic building instructions

DNA helix

In biology and medicine, the assembly instructions of an organism are understood as the sum of the genetic information stored in its genetic material , the genome . The genes of every living being, as part of the genetic material DNA , contain instructions for the production of certain proteins, the proteins . These instructions are also referred to as building instructions or a recipe.


  • Rudi Palla : A thesaurus of the lost professions. Eichborn, Frankfurt a. M. 1995, ISBN 3-8218-4443-4
  • Eike Pies: Traditional and other old professions. Verlag E. & U. Brockhaus, Solingen 1999, ISBN 3-930132-07-9
  • Chris R. Calladine et al. a .: DNA - the molecule and how it works. Spektrum Akademischer Verlag, Heidelberg 2005, ISBN 3-8274-1605-1
  • James D. Watson: In the beginning there was the double helix. Ullstein, Berlin 2003, ISBN 3-550-07566-9

See also

Web links

Wiktionary: Building instructions  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations