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An Introduction to Mechanics

  1. Dec 11, 2012 #1
    Can anyone comment on the difficulty level of this book? The one by Daniel Kleppner and Robert J Kolenkow.
    I've been thinking of buying it and studying from it, but reading the Amazon reviews has me thinking i should stay away from it, well at least for now.
    I already know some mechanics from reading Young, Freedman, and Ford's University Physics, and my mathematics is up to differential equations and linear algebra.
    I should add that although i do know some mechanics, I wasn't very good at solving the types of problems one can expect from taking a course in the subject.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 6, 2017
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  3. Dec 11, 2012 #2
    University Physics and Serway's Physics are Introductory Physics books.the kleppnar book is great for mechanics undergraduate course. I am a self-learner so I studied (due to lack of info) Goldstein before Kleppnar, and Kleppnar seems me very easy. If you already studied Univ. Phy then try Goldstein (level higher than Kleppnar's).
  4. Dec 11, 2012 #3


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    I found the problems in Goldstein to be much easier than those in Kleppner (the latter of the two was used by my teacher for our high school AP Physics C class). I also found the problems in Kleppner to be much more interesting than the comparable ones in Goldstein not to mention Goldstein is more intended for a more thorough treatment of lagrangian and hamiltonian mechanics (and other advanced topics of course) as a stepping stone to, say, a book on classical field theory. But yeah, all in all, the problems in Kleppner are very fun to work through and teach you many important techniques of physics that will come in handy. University Physics by Young is a joke in comparison to Kleppner and is much more dry in its presentation of the material. Kleppner's chapter on rigid body rotation, for example, is just plain awesome. Anyways, sorry for coming off as a Kleppner fanboy and good luck mate!
  5. Dec 11, 2012 #4
    Kleppner/Kolenkow is the best mid level classical mechanics book you will find. You will need to know quite a bit of calculus to do the problems though. Since you have DEs and LA you should be fine though. If you plan on working on your own it's good choice even tough a challenging one.
  6. Dec 11, 2012 #5
    It's good, but I would skip the special relativity sections.
  7. Dec 11, 2012 #6
    I looked up Goldstein's book, and it seems to me that it takes the Lagrangian and Hamiltonian path to mechanics. I am actually looking for a book on Newtonian mechanics since i don't really like University Physics, plus Goldstein's book is over 100 dollars brand new and almost 100 for a used hardcover copy.
    I think ill get Kleppner's book and later on try Goldstein, or maybe even Spivak's mechanics book.

    Thanks everyone.
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