I passed the October 2015 Mechanical Engineering PE exam (I chose to take the Mechanical Systems and Materials in the afternoon), and I would like to share with you how I prepared for the exam. I did not enroll in a course, but I used the following four resources, all purchased on Amazon:
(1) Mechanical Engineering Reference Manual for the PE Exam, 13th Ed
(2) PE Exam Review for Mechanical Systems and Materials: PE Review Book for ME
(3) PE Mechanical Engineering: Mechanical Systems and Materials Practice Exam
(4) Six-Minute Solutions for Mechanical PE Exam Mechanical Systems and Materials Problems, 2nd Ed
The first of these four resources, of which this review concerns, is by far the most essential. I repeatedly used Lindeburg's Mechanical Engineering Reference Manual during the actual test. While the other three resources were helpful, and I recommend that you purchase and use them, the Mechanical Engineering Reference Manual was by far the most helpful. Most of the chapters contain material that is "fair game" on the exam. You can compare what the exam covers versus the chapters in this book. You will notice that some chapters contain material that is no longer covered on the exam. I skipped these chapters. For the chapters that did contain material on the exam (which was a majority of the book), I read them completely, and I worked through all examples. Most example problems have solutions in both S.I. and U.S. systems, and this is helpful because the exam can use either system. I switched back and forth: if I solved one example problem using S.I., then I would solve the next using the U.S. system. Furthermore, to get extra studying time, I studied during my lunch break at work. I ate for about 15 minutes and studied for about 45 minutes. If you do this 5 days per week, then that is an extra 3.75 hours of study per week that you did not have to do at home. Plus, when you bring a really big book to work and read it, people will look and think you look really smart.
I will also review the other three resources listed in this review. In my opinion, the afternoon exam is orders of magnitude harder than the morning exam, so prepare for the afternoon exam even more than the morning exam. Best of luck, I wish you well! (Posted on 2/26/2016)
Used this book (and ONLY this book + a unit conversion book) for the October 2014 Mechanical PE exam and passed. Logically laid out, easy to use index (can print the index separately from the author's website for free to avoid flipping back to the back constantly). Included everything I found myself looking for. (Posted on 12/11/2015)