nuts and bolts

noun
the essential or basic aspects: to learn the nuts and bolts of a new job.

Origin:
1955–60

nuts-and-bolts, adjective
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
nuts and bolts
 
pl n
informal the essential or practical details

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Example sentences
Algebra is the basic nuts and bolts of math, but calculus is the beauty of it.
Nuts and bolts, steel cylinders and canisters, valves carefully pried from a
  wrecked automobile.
Professors often lack the administrative know-how to manage the nuts and bolts
  of such trips.
The problem has long been that no one, not even the participants, really care
  about the nuts and bolts of state government.
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