Instructions without words

@JudyEv (129864)
Bunbury, Australia
April 16, 2018 2:30am CST
The photo shows one page of the instructions for assembling our mirrored Ikea doors. We’ve just purchased and assembled a lovely wardrobe in our bedroom. We have been very impressed with the workmanship of the components and although we had a few moments of puzzling over the instructions, in general we felt they were quite good. As you can see, there are no words, just diagrams. Some of the elements are blown up to show how a particular piece fits into the jigsaw. The doors consist of four pieces of mirrored glass which have to be assembled into a framework. Unfortunately we broke three sections of mirror – each time as we were starting a new door. So we can’t finish the last door till we get more glass. After the third breakage we made up the door without the glass and were able to see where we were going wrong. So while it’s a shame it’s not the end of the world. So I’m wondering how often you come across instructions without words. In some ways it was better than trying to decipher instructions which are written in really bad English.
33 people like this
34 responses
@bagarad (12618)
• Paso Robles, California
16 Apr
I can't understand any instructions that don't have words, unless it's a video demonstration. I had to go to YouTube tonight to review how to unjam my printer when I was ready to print my tax form.
5 people like this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
YouTube has some marvellous videos on how to do almost anything. I am always being astounded by what is on YouTube.
1 person likes this
@bagarad (12618)
• Paso Robles, California
16 Apr
@JudyEv I'm thankful for those how-to videos, because often there are words to go along with the visual demonstration and you can pause or go back to see again anything you didn't get quickly.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
@bagarad We hadn't realised how much help was available there but we use it all the time now.
1 person likes this
@MALUSE (42532)
• Germany
16 Apr
From the net: The IKEA Group owns 276 stores in 25 countries. There is a grand total of 313 IKEA stores in 38 countries/territories. The other 37 stores are owned and run by franchisees outside the IKEA Group in 17 countries/territories. Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Czech republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United kingdom and USA. The other 34 stores are owned and run by franchisees outside the IKEA Group in 16 countries/ territories. These are Australia (2), the United Arab Emirates (2), Cyprus (1), Dominican Republic (1), Greece (4), Hong Kong (3), Iceland (1), Israel (2), Kuwait (1), Malaysia (1), the Netherlands (1), Romania (1), Saudi Arabia (3), Singapore (2), Spain (4), Taiwan (4), and Turkey (4). The IKEA Group owns 276 stores in 25 countries. There is a grand total of 313 IKEA stores in 38 countries/territories. The other 37 stores are owned and run by franchisees outside the IKEA Group in 17 countries/territories. Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom and USA. The other 34 stores are owned and run by franchisees outside the IKEA Group in 16 countries/ territories. These are Australia (2), the United Arab Emirates (2), Cyprus (1), Dominican Republic (1), Greece (4), Hong Kong (3), Iceland (1), Israel (2), Kuwait (1), Malaysia (1), the Netherlands (1), Romania (1), Saudi Arabia (3), Singapore (2), Spain (4), Taiwan (4), and Turkey (4). ------------------------------- These 'wordless' instructions have certainly helped the IKEA peepz to conquer the world. I've always found them logical and helpful. Yet, the happiness of friendships and marriages has been endangered by not understanding them. :-)
5 people like this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
We were happy with them although a couple of the diagrams had us puzzled. Once we'd worked out what was wanted the drawings then made more sense. And thanks for all the background information. I think it's a great store.
@WriterAI (5234)
• Bulgaria
16 Apr
There is IKEA in Bulgaria too.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
@WriterAI It seems they really are world wide.
@caopaopao (12367)
• China
16 Apr
It's really hard work. I'm bad at this kind of work. So if I were you I will find someone to do it.
3 people like this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
It wasn't too hard and we enjoy assembling things ourselves. We're very happy with the result.
2 people like this
@caopaopao (12367)
• China
16 Apr
1 person likes this
@epiffanie (10408)
• Australia
16 Apr
It's the equivalent of sign language isn't it? ..
3 people like this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
Pretty much. The men in the drawings have very sad faces when they're showing you what NOT to do!
2 people like this
@xFiacre (4739)
• Ireland
16 Apr
@judyev Someone in our house issues instructions without words frequently. She just looks in a certain way and I know what I’ve done wrong and fix it! (Your photo doesn’t appear to have worked - hasn’t appeared at all in fact).
3 people like this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
If you know what you did wrong without the need for words, why did you do it wrong in the first place? I have little sympathy for you!
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (170177)
• Switzerland
16 Apr
It's an easy way not to have to pay translators. I prefer this kind of instruction to those translated in China into 20 different languages and none of the 20 translations makes sense.
2 people like this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
I prefer the pictures too. I don't know who some of these companies get to do their translations but some are terrible.
2 people like this
@WriterAI (5234)
• Bulgaria
16 Apr
@LadyDuck I am sure they use it.
2 people like this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
@LadyDuck Like @WriterAI I think they must do.
1 person likes this
@mlgen1037 (29645)
• Manila, Philippines
16 Apr
I experienced it once when we were putting the parts of a clothes rack. We looked at the instructions and it was in written in Chinese (which is I think equivalent to no written instructions at all). So we guessed how we will do it, until my husband found a way.
2 people like this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
Sometimes the instructions are in English but might as well be in Chinese as the translation is very bad.
2 people like this
@mlgen1037 (29645)
• Manila, Philippines
16 Apr
@JudyEv Exactly, Judy. We had to really trust our instincts if there are no words or it is in Chinese.
1 person likes this
@Morleyhunt (20261)
• Canada
16 Apr
Picture instructions are coming more common. This saves them needed to have the instructions translated and printed in multiple languages. Most of the time the picture are more than adequate.
2 people like this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
If the pictures are done well they are adequate and less ambiguous sometimes than bad translations.
1 person likes this
@TRBRocks420 (81009)
• Banks, Oregon
16 Apr
Better luck next time, those sure arn't very good directions.
2 people like this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
We got there in the end so that is the main thing.
1 person likes this
@xFiacre (4739)
• Ireland
16 Apr
@judyev Ah, there it is now.
2 people like this
@allknowing (68527)
• India
17 Apr
Congrats. You finally did it. I am not good at DIYeven with all the instructions be they diagrams or words (lol)
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
Part of it is what you're used to I guess and if you've had a bit of experience in the field.
1 person likes this
@allknowing (68527)
• India
17 Apr
@JudyEv Youtube even has instructions on how to unbox a box (lol)
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
@allknowing Really? Someone must have really wanted to create an instructional YouTube video.
1 person likes this
@sprite1950 (14498)
• Corsham, England
17 Apr
I like words and pictures as I get very impatient with flat pack instructions which only contain pictures. I assume it's because the product is shipped out to various countries and they can't be bothered with the different languages. However I'm not very practical and my partner manages fine with just pictures
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
As you say I guess no words means they don't have to worry about translations. These pictures were very clear. There were diagrams of all the different components at the beginning and how many of each part you needed. Then the diagrams themselves showed one small step at a time.
1 person likes this
@sprite1950 (14498)
• Corsham, England
17 Apr
@JudyEv Yes I need to count to 10 and concentrate on the pictures. I usually end up getting in a temper and calling my partner to come and help me. He is a bit slow but he always gets there in the end.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
@sprite1950 I think it is courting disaster to start thinking 'I know how this goes' and merrily carry on. I'm not saying you do this. We made the first basic wardrobe no worries and but then sailed along with the second and suddenly discovered we had the backing sheet with the nice white surface facing the wall. So we had to take it off and turn it over. It's easy to get over-confident.
1 person likes this
@yugocean (8762)
• India
16 Apr
This is really sometyhing not worth, as this way we may not understand what it actually means. I have different story, I broke a machine (that was repaired due to guarantee) it was due to instruction were written is unreadable smaller characters.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
If instructions have been translated badly it can be very difficult to follow them.
2 people like this
@yugocean (8762)
• India
16 Apr
@JudyEv instruction were so small that I don't know if they were written in understandable language or not, in fact they were small then smaller ants.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
@yugocean I can understand this. The writing can be very tiny indeed.
1 person likes this
@AKRao24 (20622)
• India
16 Apr
I am feeling sorry for your bad experience with that piece of wardrobe! I too got some furniture sets, Fancy Ceiling fans and Chandeliers where we get diagrammatic instructions along with badly written instructions which are hard to understand! Anyway...better luck next time! have a great time @JudyEv!
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
It's all done now and looking good. We just have to wait till some new mirrors arrive then we'll be able to finish off the last door.
1 person likes this
@AKRao24 (20622)
• India
16 Apr
@JudyEv , Wow that is nice to know...do you get spare mirrors for this Kit? Thanks!
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
@AKRao24 No unfortunately, no spare mirrors! We ordered another pack of four last night. Luckily they are not nearly as expensive as we expected them to be.
1 person likes this
@youless (93016)
• Guangzhou, China
17 Apr
I haven't bought Ikea furniture which needs to assemble by ourselves. As I am afraid we don't know how to do it and perhaps the instructions are not so helpful. Is it easy for you to assemble it if you follow the instructions?
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
We found it quite easy to do. If you go slowly and carefully and do as the instructions show you, it all works out beautifully.
1 person likes this
@youless (93016)
• Guangzhou, China
17 Apr
@JudyEv You are very talented
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
@youless Maybe I'm just good at following instructions!
1 person likes this
@drannhh (15240)
• United States
16 Apr
Hi, Judy. That very thing happened to me just last night when I tried to make a practice run putting a beach shelter together before packing it for a trip. There were four kinds of parts included, labeled A B, C and D, but the D Part was not shown in the drawing.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
That would have made it difficult. Did you get it up in the finish?
1 person likes this
@drannhh (15240)
• United States
17 Apr
@JudyEv Not yet. Probbably will wait until summer and stand next to it looking helpless on the beach. That usually works.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
@drannhh Haha! You've obviously done that before haven't you? And you just said so too of course.
1 person likes this
@WorDazza (10100)
• Manchester, England
16 Apr
Blimey!! You're impressed with the workmanship and quality?? Ikea must be selling different stuff in Australia. Mrs. WorDazza and I tend to visit Ikea about once every 5 years just to check things haven't changed. And guess what? They're still selling the same over-priced rubbish. Maybe the whole Scandinavian design thing just isn't my cup of tea!!!
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
16 Apr
Maybe it is different stuff. All the holes you need to match up with screws or whatever fit perfectly and snugly; there are the right number of screws for all the different parts; it's all packaged beautifully - we're been very happy.
1 person likes this
@WorDazza (10100)
• Manchester, England
16 Apr
@JudyEv As a woman of taste (after all you married Vince!) I will take your word for it
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
@WorDazza Wow, I don't get that happening too often, certainly not from Vince. He never takes my word for anything but has to check it out thoroughly himself.
1 person likes this
@Hannihar (39939)
17 Apr
@JudyEv I think there were times I did not get any instructions whatsoever. It is very frustrating.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
17 Apr
Oh dear. No instructions at all would be awful.
1 person likes this
@Hannihar (39939)
17 Apr
@JudyEv Judy, it certainly is.
1 person likes this
@Tampa_girl7 (25845)
• United States
18 Apr
I don't think I've seen wordless instructions before
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
18 Apr
It actually worked a lot better than I thought it would. The diagrams were very clear with only one piece of information on each so it was pretty hard to get lost, although we nearly managed it once or twice.
@JESSY3236 (7038)
• United States
17 Apr
when i got my new keyboard, it had instructions without any words. I couldn't really figure what they meant.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (129864)
• Bunbury, Australia
18 Apr
It can be difficult if there are no words.
1 person likes this