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This page lists useful textbooks for mechanical engineers, categorized by subject.

Structural Mechanics & Machine Design

Budynas-Nisbett, "Shigley's Mechanical Engineering Design," 10th Edition

This is the machine design bible, and it is found on the desk of many if not most mechanical design engineers. It covers topics on design and analysis of components such as bolted joints, power screws, gears, bearings, springs, and shafts. It also covers analysis of deflections and stresses.

Gere, James M., "Mechanics of Materials," 8th Edition

This is an excellent book on strength of materials. It covers the principles behind stress and strain analysis, as well as applications of stress analysis in beams, pressure vessels, and columns.

Dowling, Norman E., "Mechanical Behavior of Materials: Engineering Methods for Deformation, Fracture, and Fatigue," 4th Edition

This is an incredible resource for structural analysts. It focuses on stress, strain, and failure mechanisms in materials. It also gives a detailed and well-written treatment of fatigue and fracture mechanics. This book covers very complex topics and distills the information in a way that is clear and understandable.

Lindeburg, Michael R., "Mechanical Engineering Reference Manual for the PE Exam," 13th Edition

This is a handbook intended for studying for the PE exam, but it is an excellent resource in general. This book covers the entire breadth of mechanical engineering, and so it condenses each topic into very few pages. Lindeburg does a great job of extracting the core ideas from each topic and then explaining them clearly and concisely. This book is your best bet if you want to cover all of the core principles of mechanical engineering as quickly and concisely as possible.

Machinery's Handbook, 30th Edition, Industrial Press Inc.

This reference handbook is an industry standard. It covers many of the core topics related to machine design and gives many useful equations. This book also contains countless reference tables, the value of which cannot be overstated.

"Roark's Formulas for Stress and Strain," 8th Edition

This is a standard reference among stress analysts, and gives a good coverage on topics related to analysis of stress and strain in various structures. A major benefit of this book is that it covers many uncommon cases that are hard to find elsewhere.

Callister, William D., "Materials Science and Engineering: An Introduction," 9th Edition

This book covers the fundamentals of materials science in a clear manner. This is a must have for any engineer interested in mechanical properties of materials, material failure mechanisms, and material treatment processes. In addition to metals, it also contains useful information on polymers, ceramics, and composites.

Gordon, J.e., "Structures: Or Why Things Don't Fall Down," 1st Edition

This is a quick and fun read, and it does a great job covering the history of the development of the theory of elasticity and the way that it is applied in the design of structures. It is a very entertaining book, and it reads like a novel rather than a textbook.

Fluid Mechanics & Thermodynamics