From the Erector Square factory in Connecticut, the A.C. Gilbert Company first created the Type I Erector set in 1913. Since then countless sets, designs and inventions have been built using Meccano Erector. The instructions included in Erector sets, especially the older sets, are notoriously brief and often don't match exactly with the pieces included. This is because the information provided with Meccano erector sets is not designed as detailed, systematic instructions but as general guidelines. These instructions or guidelines open up a whole world of models ranging from planes, trucks, dragsters, towers and robots you can build and design yourself.
Spread out all the pieces from the Meccano Erector set on the floor. Analyse and identify each part by comparing it with the list of parts included with the set. Typical parts in a Meccano Erector set are, metal strips, wheels, axles, angle girders, pulleys, gears and other mechanical parts. Each part has a code to cross-reference with the parts list.
Look carefully at the model drawings supplied with the set. The drawings describe how the parts connect. Each part is labelled with its code to identify it easily. If more than one piece is required, the label will have the number of parts you need within brackets. For instance the label or call-out "38-(2)" means you need two of the parts coded 38 in your set, which in some sets is a 17-hole girder.
Connect the parts with the screws, washers and nuts included in your set. Match the holes of the two pieces you wish to connect. Place a washer on the outer side of each hole. Introduce the screw through the washers and the hole and screw on the nut until tight. If you want the pieces to be able to swivel, turn the nut counter-clockwise.
Download a wide selection of new and old Erector models at Meccano's official website and other websites run by Erector enthusiasts (see Resources).