As I grow more weary of 4E and more nostalgic for my days playing 2E, I'm spending more and more time reading the old rules and the retroclones. I'm having a great time.
One of the things that I liked so much in 2E (as a change from 1E) was the non-weapon proficiency system. It provided a very nice, simple system for dealing with all kinds of non-combat situations (and was useful in combat, too). Unfortunately, I've found the 2E retroclones unsatisfactory, and the 1E (or earlier) retroclones much better. That leaves me wondering how things like "lie convincingly" and "set a trap" and "repair a broken wagon" were handled. (I'm sure I had my own rules for it before 2E came out… when I was 11.)
The AD&D 1E DMG has some talk about secondary skills on page 12, but it's really just "role for your previous occupation," and says:
When secondary skills are used, it is up to the DM to create and/or adjudicate situations in which these skills are used or useful to the player character…
So, I understand that there are no hard rules, and that this is probably a good thing. I'm just wondering what real DMs did or do during real play. I can imagine backporting a simple d20 check against a DC with bonuses for your secondary skills and ability modifier. Given the percent-to-succeed used in may other places, maybe that would make sense, too.
If I'm going to run an old school game, I'm sure at some point I'll want to have consistent rulings on how these kinds of odd jobs work. How have the other DMs out there done it?