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Thread: Help us to help you! When posting technical problems...

  1. #1
    I'm part of the furniture Club Member Ian C's Avatar
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    Help us to help you! When posting technical problems...

    If you've got a problem with your car, you probably already know these things:

    • What the symptoms are
    • Under what conditions they occur
    • When it happens
    • When it started to misbehave
    • What you've tried to do to fix it
    • What effect those fixing attempts had


    But we don't know these things already. So posting up a one-liner like this:
    http://www.mkivsupra.net/vbb/showthr...=1#post3455048
    Makes remotely helping with a diagnosis almost impossible.

    (Sorry Jellybean, nothing personal just yours was the most recent example and therefore very convenient )

    Here is an example of an issue I posted.
    http://www.mkivsupra.net/vbb/showthr...8-Top-end-tick

    See how much easier it was for people to help me because of all the information I supplied

    If you present people with the same problem you are encountering, they will get stuck in. If you present people with a game of twenty questions, where they have to put in a lot of effort just to be able to start helping you, many will not bother.

    Also, y'know, good pictures that are actually in focus please

    -Ian

    Additional, suggested by Nic - Posting up any relevant specs and modifications to your car is also a good idea. Got starting problems? Probably worth mentioning the HKS DLi and the replacement injectors/pump/FPR etc.. Probably not worth mentioning the suspension you have (unless you got this problem straight after fitting it!). Got gear selection problems? Let us know if it's a manual or auto right from the start
    Last edited by Ian C; 26-07-12 at 11:31.
    I love my job. It pays for my Supra.

  2. #2
    is now a Supraless Club Member AndrewOW's Avatar
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  3. #3
    ImportPimp Club Member Nic's Avatar
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    The poster should also say what Supra model it is ie. NA, TT, manual, auto, VVTi, UK, J-spec, etc. Would be good if you had to chose from a menu what car model it is before posting a new thread and that info is shown as part of the thread title (like the Classifieds section).
    Nic

  4. #4
    I'm part of the furniture Club Member Ian C's Avatar
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    The menu thing would just get in the way, but you prompted me to add a bit about what relevant modifications/specs you have
    I love my job. It pays for my Supra.

  5. #5
    Money Laundering Club Member johnny g's Avatar
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    Model: (i.e. N/A, JSpec TT, UK TT, VVTi TT, etc)
    Transmission: 5/6speed, auto
    Modifications relevant to issue: (Even just paste in your garage info?)
    ECU: Stock or Aftermarket
    What the symptoms are:
    Under what conditions they occur:
    When it happens
    When it started to misbehave
    What you've tried to do to fix it
    What effect those fixing attempts had

    How about that as a starter? Possibly agree on something like this, prune the thread and sticky?
    Johnny - Twitter - Blog - Web Design
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  6. #6
    I'm part of the furniture Club Member Ian C's Avatar
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    Well I don't want it to turn into a bureaucratic nightmare of form filling, where anyone asking "why does my tyre deflate over the course of a week" gets yelled at for not filling this out in triplicate. This is really as the title says, "help us to help you". Answer the bullet pointed stuff and you won't go far wrong.

    And I REALLY don't want to see a four-page garage info pasted into the opening post, it'll mostly be irrelevant to the problem in hand so you'll have just as much of a problem sorting the wheat from the chaff as you would if no mods were listed.

    The main point of this thread is so I can go "See here -> linky" in a one-liner question thread rather than retype it all out each time
    I love my job. It pays for my Supra.

  7. #7
    Meliora cogito Club Member caseys's Avatar
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    Can you pre-populate new threads with any of the above as a template possibly?

    People can just delete it, or alternatively get laughed at if they completely ignore it and post below it all leaving it empty..
    Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away - Antoine de Saint-Exupery
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  8. #8
    Sunday driving Club Member stevie_b's Avatar
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    Another suggestion: if you manage to fix the issue and the solution isn't obvious in the discussion, then please take the time to post up what you did to successfully fix it. How many of you have read a thread that describes the exact problem they're having, only to find the thread goes dead before a solution is reported? OK, in some of those cases maybe a solution is never found, but I bet there's a fair few where the OP loses interest in the thread when they've fixed the problem either by themselves or via advice that's been offered.

    The above doesn't happen as much on here as on other quieter forums, but it's still good practice and polite. After all, by submitting tech help threads we're accessing a free source of knowledge, and sometimes it's time to feed knowledge back into the system.

  9. #9
    Me? Post? Never! Club Member ashbuster's Avatar
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    i have a feeling if the posts are too long because of this most people wont read it or help,
    no ones going to want to read a long post just to find out it could be something stupid like battery is dead
    wouldnt it be good to have the problem at the top of the post with whats wrong ect.. then at the bottom of the post the specs

    edit
    never seen ian's 2nd post lol
    Last edited by ashbuster; 26-07-12 at 13:10.

  10. #10
    I'm part of the furniture Club Member Ian C's Avatar
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    Stevie_b - Yes, it's good practice to write up the solution, sadly yes, some people abandon thread the moment it's fixed and don't ever provide the result. Very frustrating when you search and find the exact same issue with no solution, or worse, some div posting up "don't worry, fixed now"!

    Ashbuster - it is indeed a careful balance between tl;dr and useless one-liners

    As I've said, I don't want it to end up a form filling nightmare, I just want to be able to point someone at this thread to say "help us to help you". You rarely need all the info for most of the tech discussions on here, but when you've got a wierd intermittent problem or odd sound or whatever, it becomes relevant. I basically find myself, shoulders slumped, going "can I be arsed to type in the six basic problem solving points and ask all the questions the OP should have answered in their first post, or shall I just look at another thread?". Not ideal. Now I can just go "Answer these and we'll help! -> linky"
    I love my job. It pays for my Supra.

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