Why so proprietary if it's in the Public Domain?
If the manuals are in the public domain, you may wonder why the owners are being so proprietary. That's often because they either don't know the status, or they do and they're attempting to leverage their "ownership." The Dear Rich staff ran into a similar problem a few years ago with the "owner" of some 1930s cartoons resulting in a nominal fee being paid (not the exorbitant fee being requested) in order to acquire a good digital version of the original work for reproduction. All this effort may not be necessary once the Google Settlement is finalized, since Google plans to digitize and display every word ever placed into print. (Some newer Audel manuals are already available.) Anyway, we're not sure why the companies think that publishing these manuals is cost-prohibitive. Guess they've never heard of POD.