down. This same problem exists on a flying boat, but is quite easy to control. Sir: In the August number of PS, page 175, a writer says to keep birds away from strawberry beds by putting bird cages over the plants. What a joke. I have 500 plants in my strawberry beds . . . 500 bird cages?
ARADIO set helped win the war. They called it the VT fuse, remember? Uncounted thousands of these compact and costly radios were shot off. A radio set could help win the peace. Basic receivers so cheap they could be handed around like books.
When the huge, oval-shaped section above swung gently into place, it topped off the world’s largest ocean-going smokestack. The slim, streamlined funnel is 53 feet long and 46 feet high, It is shown being installed on the Caronia, new 34,000-ton luxury liner now nearing completion at Clydebank, Scotland, for the Cunard White Star Line.
Gigantic gas turbines and secret free-piston engine challenge lOO-year rule of coal and steam locomotives.
Free-Piston Engine Kept Secret
A WHO’S WHO OF RAILROAD LOCOMOTIVES SHOWING WHERE THEY GET THEIR POWER
Jets Slightly Delayed
George H. Walts
THREE brand-new kinds of mechanical steeds are being groomed for the neverending race of the iron horses. For more than a hundred years, steam and coal ruled supreme on America’s rails. Then came the all-electric and the Dieselelectric engines.
A SHORT CUT to tailor-made suits has been invented by an Australian tailor who realized that most men are irked by the repeated fittings necessary to produce a perfect garment. Thanks to an adjustable master coat, the customers of a custom-tailor shop in a suburb of Melbourne now receive a perfectly cut suit after only one visit.
Cargo Plane Stoops to Load. No hoists or heavy ramps would be needed to load or unload this plane—it simply pulls up its wheels and squats. The landing gear can be partly retracted on the ground to lower the fuselage. Curved doors in the nose then open upward, providing direct and easy access to the cargo compartment. C. Lemonier, of East Aurora, N. Y., and S. Payne, of Kenmore, N. Y., are the inventors.
TWO weather towers, one of them bebelieved to be the tallest structure on Long Island, will enable the new uranium chain-reacting pile of the Brookhaven National Laboratory at Upton, N. Y., to operate with perfect safety to the many surrounding communities.
LATEST entry among the flyweights, the 600-lb., two-passenger auto above claims up to 60 miles to the gallon. Its engine— either a 7½-hp., one-cylinder job or a 10hp., two-cylinder one—is in the rear, with luggage space in front. An automatic clutch is standard.
DRIVERS of Ford-made automobiles can now distract their back-seat drivers with sweet music. Fords, Lincolns, and Mercurys from 1946 to 1949 can be equipped with a back-seat speaker that feeds the radio right into passengers’ ears. It also keeps high frequencies usually lost in car noise.
THESE guard rails do a double job. Besides keeping unwary tourists from plunging over the edge of Shasta and Grand Coulee Dams, they light their path by night. Fluorescent lamps 6 to 8 ft. long are being installed under the semi-circular top rail of glistening steel, and their light will blanket the entire roadway without glare.
Light, Air Bake Enamel. Both infra-red rays and hot air are used to bake the enamel finish on metal parts in General Electric’s new test oven. The combination is expected to produce better finishes, since some enamels require the quick heating of the infra-red lamps at the start, followed by the lower, even temperature that the hotair units can provide.
IT WAS only a matter of time until one of the established automobile makers put skirts on its cars’ front wheels to match those on the rear. The 1949 Nash has them. The first reactions of the car-hungry public to the new Nash models were: But how do you turn a corner?
ONE of 1,100 piefabricated bathrooms is hoisted into place to speed construction of the Laurentien Hotel in Montreal. Factoryassembled of steel and plastic, with all fixtures installed, it’s ready to be bolted down and connected to the plumbing.
HERE’S one rug no bug will be snug in. Woven from yarn made entirely of synthetic materials, it won’t make a meal for even the most ravenous of moths. It won’t bother persons who are allergic to wool, either. Called Adoran Ⓣ, the new yarn is a chemical composition produced by an electronic process.
No man from Mars, this model-plane enthusiast wears his weird helmet to tote a radio-control transmitter. Converted from a football helmet, it has an aerial on top. The radio orders are picked up by a receiver under the wing of the gas-powered model.
A MARKSMAN doesn’t have to squint to pick out a target through this new 20-power spotting ’scope. The maker, Bausch & Lomb, says its 60-mm. aperature and improved optical system bring in a brilliant image, with pin-point definition, even when your eye is held a full inch from the eyepiece.
You can take a picture of a germ as easily as snapping a pretty girl with this photographic attachment for microscopes. Called Visicam Ⓣ, it has a ground-glass viewer, 2 inches in diameter, on one end and a single-shot film holder on the other.
THIS mechanical forefinger and thumb can do all your own can do—and do it better. Called the Harper ManipulatorⓉ it makes it easy for scientists to position minute, hardto-hold objects under a microscope. Tiny specimens are grasped between two small pinchers, opened and closed by a plunger.
RESEMBLING a huge cannon, a 74-ton.rotor shaft for a new generator is shown being eased down a hill to the East Powerhouse of Grand Coulee Dam in Washington. The 32foot shaft, brought across the top of the dam aboard this multiwheeled trailer truck, will be fitted with more than 500 tons of steel and copper to form the rotating part of man’s largest hydroelectric generator.
GRAPE pickers in a 9,500-acre vineyard at Di Giorgio, Calif., now save time and steps by loading directly into these 6-ton hoppers. One problem in designing them was how to keep a train of four or more from cutting corners in turning out of tight rows.
THIS scale model of a completely automatic parking garage shuffles cars the way a juke box files and picks out phonograph records. A New York real estate man, William Zeckendorf, developed it for efficient use of high-priced city land.
THOUGH makers of photo lamps probably need not worry yet about competition from fireflies, those little lantern-carrying beetles can be used as a substitute for flashbulbs in taking photographs. This was demonstrated for the first time recently in the Mississippi State College photographic laboratory at State College, Miss.
THE De Havilland 108 jet plane shown here recently flew faster than sound. The speed was not announced, but is believed to have been around 700 m.p.h. An experimental plane, like the U. S. Air Force’s X-l, which has exceeded the speed of sound many times, the British sweptback Swallow differs in that it can take off under its own power.
To make a kill, the multiple, wing-tip machine guns of fighter planes must be harmonized so that their bullets will concentrate on the aiming point—an enemy plane or ground installation. This adjustment, called “boresighting,” can be done by using an optical device similar to a telescope, but inaccuracies result from human error due to parallax.
A modern Zeus hurls miniature lightning bolts to mark the sky road to safety for fog-hound fliers.
George H. Waltz
BRILLIANT flashes of man-made lightning, born in a back-yard garage, are now guiding planes to safe landings at America’s foggiest airport. Produced by a row of cigarette-size lamps, the boltlike streaks of light pierce the soupiest weather to lead planes to the landing strip at California’s Landing Aids Experiment Station near Areata.
You can inhale penicillin just as easily as pipe smoke with this clear-plastic Aerohalor Ⓣ. Inhaling, as diagrammed at left, forces a tiny metal ball up a curved track until it strikes a sifter container filled with the powdered drug. This jars a small amount of the powder out of the sifter, and the air stream carries it into the nose, throat and lungs.
IF YOU like your half of the bed hard while your wife likes her side soft, you can both have your way with this new Sleep Selector Ⓣ mattress. And if you like the head of the mattress firmer than the foot, or vice versa, you can arrange that, too. Each half of the mattress has two sets of cords, one near the head and the other the foot, running through the spring casing and leading out openings in the side.
To KEEP refrigerators from “sweating,” U. S. Rubber has developed a heater that keeps the outside warm enough to prevent condensation without affecting the temperature inside. Simply a strip of electrically conducting rubber (top photo), it serves as a resistance element without wires.
A SYSTEM of mirrors lets this new Bell and Howell microfilm recorder photograph both sides of a document at once, placing them side by side on 16-mm. film. An automatic feeder runs 250 documents through a minute—twice as fast as in present recorders.
ON THE tidal flatlands south of San Francisco is a laboratory equipped like a workshopper’s heaven. Here, wood and metal are worked with a precision that even a watchmaker would consider finicky. Here, the craftsman is king. The Ames Aeronautical Laboratory of the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics, at Moffett Field, Calif., has the tools to do this kind of work.
THE ancient Egyptians made the first plywood from thin, wide boards sawed laboriously by hand from the center sections of large logs. Now most plywood veneers are cut by big rotary peelers that literally unwind a log like a roll of wrapping paper.
INDUSTRY’S engineers are finally putting overalls on the atom. The first concrete examples of the ways atomic energy might find the practical uses so often predicted for it were shown in models in a recent New York exhibit. Displays covered possible applications of radioisotopes and high-voltage generators as well as nuclear power.
THE Navy’s answer to suicide divebombing is a new 3-inch antiaircraft gun that is reported to fire more than 150 high-explosive shells a minute. Designed to replace the Bofors 40-mm. gun used against close-in attacks in World War II, it has twin barrels each 150 inches long and an automatic loading mechanism.
IN STRIDE with the rising birthrate, U.S. toy makers are setting another production record this year. Sales, now booming all year round, reach their annual peak in the month from Thanksgiving to Christmas. At the present pace, they will climb to a total of $300,000,000 for the year—$50,000,000 over 1947’s mark.
THE oil-well casing shown at right, made of concrete spun around a reinforcing framework of spiraled steel rods, saves nine-tenths of the metal used in conventional castings. With the superstructure revolving at 3,000 r.p.m. as concrete is shot through, centrifugal force causes the cement to set with unusual compactness, making it nonporous.
THE crossbars and side posts that support coal-mine shafts are erected more quickly and safely with this timbering machine developed by the Baker-Raulag Co., of Cleveland. At right is shown the hydraulically operated swinging boom that holds crossbars against the mine roof while posts are cut to length by a circular saw mounted on the machine, as illustrated below.
THEY’RE teaching murder at Harvardbut the victims are dolls, and so are the killers. These 6-inch actors populate a pigmy world of violence called the Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death. Their re-enactments of crime are used by the university’s Department of Legal Medicine to teach medical students and visiting coroners and detectives how to solve strange cases of sudden death.
WHEN Alfred B. Bennett decided he would like to fly between his home and his job at an airport several miles away, instead of driving, he faced a problem. His home, near Katonah, N. Y., had a front yard about 500 feet long. In a pinch, that was enough space to take oil.
YOUR bones are twice as strong as hickory wood and 10 times as flexible as steel. So says the Navy, which has been testing human bones at the National Bureau of Standards in Washington with the apparatus pictured above. A piece of bone, machined to cylindrical shape, is being squeezed in a hydraulic press.
THERE’S little chance of an approaching driver smacking into this station wagon at night. It stands out clearly in the light from another car because of a reflective sheeting applied over the wood paneling. Previously used on traffic signs and license plates for better night visibility (PS, July ’48, p. 138), this sheeting now is available in several colors and can be printed to look like any surface.
THIS practice mask sharpens a football passer’s target eye by making him pick out a receiver at a glance. The inventor, Prof. Hoyt L. Sherman of Ohio State, here shows how a tug on a string lifts the face flap to give Quarterback Pandel Savic a fleeting glimpse of his field.
BILLED as a lazy-man’s spading fork, this new garden tool was displayed recently at an inventors’ exhibition in Paris. A springand-roller hinge holds its metal prong against the ground while the fork is pushed into the earth. The prong then serves as a fulcrum on which the fork handle operates as a lever to pry out a bite.
IF YOU’RE looking over a refrigerator in a store some day soon, and its doors fly open and its shelves slide in and out while it says, “Hiya, bud”—don’t run or even walk to the nearest exit. That’s just Junior. Junior is General Electric’s talking refrigerator, now on a tour of home appliance displays.
NOW you can type copy with an even right-hand margin—handy if you want to reproduce it by photo-offset—right on your regular typewriter. This device, attached to the carriage, varies the space between letters and words to make each line the right length.
THE workman in the picture above is climbing into a 25-ton Navy crane on a new safety ladder. One caged section is attached to the crane’s stationary base; the other, to the revolving housing. The man can mount from one to the other only when they are aligned and in sight of the crane operator.
A NEW British clothes hanger, shown below, solves the problem of how to hang your trousers on the same hanger with your vest and jacket without knocking them off. Its separate rods for both the vest and trousers simply lift up until you need them in the natural order of undressing.
THIS garden-hose attachment (below) speeds washing a car or windows by rinsing as it scrubs. The mop can be replaced with a jet spray for sluicing sidewalks or a pressure breaker for irrigating plants without stooping. The complete set, called Prac-ti-cal Water Sweeper Ⓣ, sells for $2.95.
ON APRIL 1st, 1946, 54-foot waves swept in without warning on the Hawaiian Islands. When the waters withdrew, as shown above at Kahuku airfield, they left 173 dead and $25,000,000 damage. Such huge waves are caused by earthquakes in the sea floor.
THE Navy can now take a complete lab oratory right out to the rocket test pits. Inside a specially built truck and trailer, instruments and photographic processing equipment turn out a full report on rocket motor experiments-within a few minutes after the firing is over.
Light Plane’s Wheels Fold. Retractable landing gear, unusual in a lowpriced plane, is shown in operation, at left above, as the new four-place, all-metal Atlas takes off. The plane also has a controllable-pitch propeller. Its large tail assembly increases controllability.
A RADICAL new machine in a little sixstory building at Beaver Falls, Pa., recently filled its first commercial order—45 tons of steel billets. It turns molten steel, for the first time, directly into semifinished shapes. When they leave the mill, they are ready for conversion, by light rolling, into sheets, pipes and tubes, plates, bars, or wire.
Everybody has his own pet idea of some gadget he would like to see in general use. What is YOURS? Popular Science will pay $5.00 for each one published. Use government postcards only. Contributions cannot be acknowledged or returned.
ANY man who has ever sewed on a button knows that the toughest part of the job is getting the needle threaded. That’s easy now, with one of these new devices to do it without strain on your eyes or temper. The essential parts of both threaders are a hole into which the needle is dropped with its eye down, a slot to slip the thread into, and a liny hook that reaches through the eye and then pulls the thread through as it is withdrawn.
EITHER of these two portable cribs simplifies the problem of taking Junior with you on overnight trips. Both can double as play pens as well as beds. The Sleepy-Tot Ⓣ, shown at left, is nothing more than a frame with hooks and adjustable straps to hold it to any bed.
Fossilized shells of microscopic plants that lived 50,000 centuries ago work wonders for modern industry in making products you use every day.
Andrew R. Boone
TINY water plants that lived and died five million years ago are one of the most useful materials of American industry. Their skeletons, more beautifully intricate than snowflakes yet so small that a billion of them would barely fill a pint jar, do literally thousands of diverse jobs in modern industry.
FULL-SIZE homes are being turned out of molds like toy soldiers in an experimental building project at Port Washington, Long Island. The houses are made almost completely in a single operation by pouring concrete into special forms that shape the entire unit—exterior and interior walls, rooms, hallways, doors, windows, and even moldings.
YOU’VE heard lots about how wind tunnels are used to test models of new airplanes. Now comes the water tunnel to do the same thing with underwater missiles. The 600-ton water tunnel shown in this cutaway drawing will be the biggest ever built—97 ft. 7 in. long, 31 ft. 1 in. high.
NINE chances out of ten, the runaway car, truck, or bus is the victim of overheated brakes. That’s because brakes begin to lose their grip when they get hot. Now metallurgists have found a way to keep brakes from overheating. By bonding aluminum to cast iron in a chemical process developed during the war for use in air-cooled aircraft engines, they have produced a brake that gets just so warm and no warmer.
THESE valve caps tell service-station attendants exactly what air pressure you want. Especially good for low-pressure tires, the caps retail at a dime apiece. A. Schrader’s Son, Brooklyn, N. Y., makes them with various pressure figures.
COMBINING utility with good appearance, this new style Harley-Davidson rear bumper lines up with the rear stand of the motorcycle. Thus any impact from the rear is absorbed in part by the stand. The chrome bumper is available as an accessory.
KEEPING little ones from falling out a rear door has always concerned parents. Here are two locks to prevent this. At left are two views of one made by Semco Research, Inc., Inglewood, Calif. The door-lock button now on your car is removed and the lock installed in its place.
HERE’S a new device that’s said to remove ice from windshields quickly and thoroughly. Made of plastic, it consists of a number of teeth set loosely in a base that fits the palm. Since the plastic is softer than glass, the windshield can’t be scratched.
YOU’LL probably be seeing rubber nozzles like this one at gas stations before long. Just announced by The B. F. Goodrich Company, it eliminates any chance of damage to the car finish or inlet pipe. It also safeguards against danger from static electricity.
Prevent Overinflation. The new low-pressure tires are sometimes overinflated through carelessness. As a reminder to service-station attendants, paint the correct pressure on the rim beside each valve stem with white enamel, or apply waterproof adhesive tape with the figure inked on.
ENGINE repairs are a cinch on the new extra-heavy-duty truck models just announced by Diamond T. Now you have to be just a mechanic—not an acrobat too. The engine’s still hidden deep between two high-riding fenders, as it is in many cars. But there’s a big difference.
HERE’S a way you can learn to ride a motorcycle with ease. While the student rides in front, an instructor sits behind. Manufactured in Czechoslovakia, the trainer is distributed in the United States by Industrial Operations, Inc., of New York.
IF ALL insignia were removed, you’d have trouble identifying the new lightweight Indians. The Indian Motocycle Company has never before made anything like them. Both of the new series are powered by 7-to-l overhead-valve engines. You shift by foot, operate the clutch by hand.
But it doesn't always come out four, as a new customer proves in the case of Silas Barnstable and the missing antifreeze•
LIKE most young auto mechanics who are worth what they get out of their pay envelopes, Stan Hicks loves to figure out new ways of doing things. Sometimes his ideas work out swell. Sometimes they don’t. Stan noted the time on the clock in the Model Garage and had to admit that this was one that hadn’t worked out.
Hydraulic controls and rear-mounted engine are used in this homemade, road-hugging automobile.
PUT back your pocketbook. At first glance, you may have hoped this was a car you could buy. But it’s not for sale, nor any other like it. However, if you’re a master mechanic, you might duplicate it for about $250. That’s about what Paul H. Walker, of North Oxford, Mass., spent for materials.
Two popular craftwork materials are neatly blended in this attractive candy or cigarette server.
GLISTENING copper and transparent colored plastic combine their lusters in this cleanly styled cigarette box. It will hold either regular or king-size smokes, or serve as a candy or jewelry box. The base, frame members, and floral escutcheon on top are made from 18or 20gauge soft copper.
THERE are many reasons for assembling your radio phonograph from separate units, and all of them spell value. Lowpriced tuners, record changers, amplifiers, and speakers often surpass in quality the comparable parts of upper-bracket combination consoles.
THE general store may lose some of its popularity when confirmed barrel-sitters discover they can have the same masculine furniture right in their own homes. These models, made by the Bob Company, St. Joseph, Mo., are even more comfortable, for they’ve been given backs, arm rests, and upholstery.
Plank Cut to Size Fits Floor Flush from Wall to Wall
AN EASY way to fit floor planks from wall to wall is illustrated in the three sketches at the right. The last fullsize plank (A) is put in place but not nailed. Lay another plank above it with the grooved end flush with the wall and mark off the excess width on A.
"Don’t gum up the works,” my wife warned when I set out to seal the bottom holes of some highly glazed flower pots. But that’s just what I did. After unsuccessfully trying various sealers, I found that wellchewed bubble gum stuck tightly to the smooth surface.
A SLIDING door made of 22 slats laced together by rubber-covered stranded wire encloses the front of this knife cabinet. All the work can be done with hand tools, although power tools help in sawing and drilling. Make the two roller guides and caps first, cutting them from ⅜" plywood.
FOR the small-fry age that doesn’t yet rate a scale-model train but wants “one that runs all by itself,” here’s a Casey Jones special Dad will have a lot of fun building. Its drive is unusual. An AC magnet vibrates two pawls against ratchet wheels on the shafts, giving the wheels 120 kicks a second—enough to send the train scooting around the track.
TWO real advantages are yours with this turntable for midget radios. Placed on it, the radio will swivel at the touch of a finger for tuning from either side of a table. If the set has a built-in loop antenna, another touch swings it to favor the station to which the dial is set.
Tin snips and soldering iron are your chief tools for building this model of a 19th Century power plant.
PERHAPS the rebirth of the hot-air engine (see PS, Feb. ’48, p. 145) gave you a yen to see this old-timer in action. Although the improved Philips design would require careful machining, you can easily make a model of the old two-cylinder type.
LIKE most things, air expands when heated. In the air engine, it’s alternately heated and cooled. Changing volume, it can be made to push a piston back and forth. At A, a loose-fitting displacer piston in a closed cylinder is at the cool end, forcing most of the enclosed air to go to the hot end.
CARDBOARD, artificial leather, and glue are the main materials needed for this combination ash tray, cigarette box, and match holder. Tools used are a knife and scissors. Make the box first, cutting out the pieces and gluing them together.
New Heating Accessories St retell Your Fuel Hollars
WITH fuel scarce in recent years, you’d have given a big welcome to some of the new home heaters now on the market. Not only do they get more heat from the fuel you burn, but if one fuel becomes short or too expensive, you quickly convert to another that’s in better supply or less costly.
With common power tools, accurately cut dadoes, rabbets, and grooves are only minutes in the making.
Edwin M. Love
LIKE everyone else, the woodworker has to strike a balance between what he puts into his craft and what he takes out. The price of fine work is skill, time, and effort; his judgment tells him how much of the last two to spend on any given project.
A STEEL block beveled to the proper angle will enable you to use your drill press for precision sharpening of jointer blades. The jig shown in these photos is used with 4" blades. Mill or saw the steel block to the correct angle and width. The grinder setup illustrated can be used to finish off the seating surface of a partially finished block.
In use the blade is locked in the jig and the cupped grinding wheel—run at 5,200 r.p.m.—is lowered into light contact with the edge. Set the drill-press depth gauge for a light cut. Hold the jig firmly on the drill table and feed it carefully under the grinder by hand.
Fine for refrigerator and auto plumbing, this material has dozens of shop and eraftwork uses besides.
Walter E. Burton
WANT running water in your darkroom? Or cutting oil fed to your lathe? Maybe you have a handmade tray that calls for something special in handles, or want to make a modern small photo frame. For any of these, copper tubing may be the answer. You can cut tubing with a hacksaw.
Grip Turns Taps. Your drill press will tap holes with the same precision it drills them. But lacking a special chuck, you can’t use motor power, and turning the chuck by hand isn’t easy. This gadget, made of coldrolled steel, furnishes the grip you need.
Valances faced with drapery fabrics that can be changed with your curtains will give your color scheme a lift. They are simple to make; molding is held by screws from inside. for polishing furniture, especially pieces with curves and molding.
A VEST-POCKET flashlight that operates without batteries has been put on the market by the Jeny Corporation, Merchantville, N. J. Electricity for the bulb is provided as needed by pumping the spring-returned magneto lever. The complete unit weighs about 2½ oz. and its size may be judged from the photo at the upper left.
To USE a glow-plug ignition system on a conventional model engine, I had to change the fuel tank as well as the fuel, for glow-plug fuels react with plastics. I removed the original tank and improvised a replacement from a discarded flashlight cell by sawing it in half, removing the chemical, and soldering a nut to the bottom.
THIS burglar alarm is easily installed or switched from one window or door to another, or used by campers to signal the approach of strangers. It’s made of a doorbell and a three-cell flashlight; either can be restored to its original service in a minute.
Sound Track Added to Home Movies. No processing is needed to synchronize a sound track directly onto already developed 8or 16-mm. home movie film with the Filmgraph Ⓣ. The machine uses a fine jewel to cut a sound groove .002" wide on either edge of black-and-white or color film.
Ordinary lighting on glassware means flare, reflections, and headaches. These two special techniques help get rid of the grief.
Kenneth M. Swezey
HAVE you ever tried to photograph your wife’s prized glassware or some plastic masterpiece you’ve spent hours in fashioning? Did your final prints contain a couple of glaring light reflections, with the object itself practically invisible?
The best way to learn radio building is by building radios, but these tips may smooth your first steps.
MANY craftsmen who have been bitten by the radio bug have discovered that the hardest thing about getting started in radio is—getting started. Right at the outset you have to answer a hundred practical questions that crop up even in the simplest project.
TALK into this tiny handful of radio transmitter, and your voice will come out of the nearest radio. It can be tuned to any quiet spot near the high end of the band. When held a few feet away from a receiver, this wireless microphone works without an antenna.
OLD windshield-wiper motors work fine as drivers for toys and models. They’ll run vigorously on 3 to 8 lb. from a lowpressure steam boiler, an air compressor, or even a tire pump. Since the motor must operate on pressure instead of vacuum, solder a small copper tube over the ⅛" air-exhaust hole in the side plate.
FARMERS will find this V-gate easier to construct than the conventional type. Several of them, spaced along the fence, will keep the barbed wire and the people who cross it from damaging each other. Two in-line posts are placed about 2' apart, and the wings of the V are separated by 3' to 4'.
THE familiar sounding rod, long used by mechanics as an aid in locating the source of motor trouble, is now offered in an electrified, amplified version by Como-Tex Co., Inc., Chicago. The instrument consists of an aluminum probe, microphone, transformer, and earphones.
A NEW series of door latches manufactured by Sargent and Company, New Haven, Conn., can be installed in wood or metal doors without mortising. The latch bolt is inserted in one hole, and the knob shaft in another. Locks are set into the knobs.
HIDING a spare front-door key for emergency use at our home is no longer a problem. A loose piece of tree bark, hollowed to fit the key, is held to the trunk as shown in the drawing and photos. The bark was removed by cutting around its natural contour with a sharp knife.
WHILE jigsawing a batch of sheet aluminum, the blade frequently broke. I found that the blades lasted a lot longer if I oiled them from time to time. To keep the oil where it was needed, I used a small piece of felt that pressed against the rear of the blade and overlapped the sides a little.
No TOOLS are necessary to connect this new plug made by Academy Electrical Products Corp., New York, N. Y. Metal points on the hinged prongs pierce the insulation of the wire and make contact. The inner unit then is slipped back into the cover.
Even if you think an octave is a fish with eight arms, you can repair your own piano.
THE first time I saw the inside of a piano, I took one quick peek and slammed the lid down. It looked like an abandoned wiremanufacturing plant scrambled with a few wagon loads of scrap lumber. Actually, it wasn’t that bad at all. The strings, hammers, and straps began to make sense when I took a more careful look.
Here’s a new open-end ratchet wrench designed especially for use on pipe, tubing, conduit, cable, and rod fittings in restricted areas. The ratchet heads operate in an arc of 7½ deg. or less. Heads, sockets, and accessories may be bought separately or in sets. An adapter also makes it possible to use standard sockets with the head. Sets sell for about $15. C. J. Hendry Co., San Francisco, is the maker.
C. J. Hendry Co.
A set of midget woodworking tools for the use of hobbyists is offered by Toddward Products, Buffalo, N. Y. Made of cast aluminum, the tools have steel cutting edges. The plane is 1⅛" wide, 3⅛" long, and has a ⅞" blade. The spokeshave has a 13/16" blade, as does the end shaver or scraper. The tools are sold as a kit for about $2.
C. J. Hendry Co.
Saw Has Big Table
With accessory extensions, this tilting-arbor table saw offers a 24" by 42" work area, 12" in front of the 8" blade, and 25" between the blade and fence. The motor tilts with the arbor, the table has a measuring scale, and a pinion knob provides fine fence adjustment. Westbuilt Metal Products Co., of Los Angeles, makes it for about $90, extensions extra.
C. J. Hendry Co.
A light hammer with a builtin seven-power lens is made by the L. S. Starrett Co., Athol, Mass. Intended primarily for tool and die makers, it makes possible accurate spotting and punching of centers and intersections. Weighing only 4 oz., the hammer is made with flat and ball-peen heads, which are offset to permit close work. Price $2.75.
C. J. Hendry Co.
Vertical Miller Fits on Lathe
A milling attachment that clamps on the ways of a bench lathe is offered by Palmer Industries, Inc., Chicago. To hold the work, the compound rest is replaced with a vise that’s furnished with the mill. The unit will make an 8" cut on the longitudinal feed and half that distance on the cross feed. It handles stock up to 3" dia. Price about $100.
Kitchen Lamp. Mrs. William J. Ortgier of Bell, Calif., wanted a lamp for her cooking quarters. Her husband filled the order—with a vengeance. This culinary masterpiece is made of a plant-filled dessert mold, a round snack board, a coffee maker, and a colander.
IF MR. BLANDINGS could have peeked through transparent walls into a scale model of his dream house, he might have had fewer nightmares during its building. Shannon S. Hughes, Oklahoma City electrician, constructed a transparent plastic model of his own dream home just as a hobby.
SINCE the distance from my coal bin to the furnace was too far to walk with each shovel of coal, I rigged this conveyor to move the coal from the bin to the hopper above the stoker. The trough is a length of 6" eaves gutter nailed between two pieces of two-by-four.
FEATURES of this shaper made by the Atlas Press Co., Kalamazoo, Mich., include a 15" by 21" table with 2" vertical travel, a heavy fence giving 1¼" depth-of-cut adjustment and ½" screw adjustment of one face for planing, sealed ball bearings, and a rearmounted motor support.
ANY driver who’s taken a curve fast knows that a moving body wants to keep traveling in a straight line. Only an outside force will make it do otherwise. Centrifugal force is the strenuous reaction of such a body to any force diverting it from a straight line.
You don’t need to be an engineer or a surveyor to use this new quadrant transit, according to the maker, Fenton Crafts, of Fenton, Mich. Farmers, carpenters, and others can use it to run lines for roads, foundations, building lots, fences, ditches, and other jobs.
To AVOID distributing numerous keys to a single padlock, each of several companies having access to a community area here uses its own lock—all being joined by short lengths of chain. Thus the unlocking of any lock will open the gate, and responsibility can be fixed on anyone leaving it open.
A PIECE of wood, hinged to a barn wall or door frame, makes a handy support for weighing feed or chickens. When not in use, the bracket swings out of the way. Cut or saw a notch at the end for the scale hanger.— Paul Criton, Jr., Kayville, Sask.
THIS new glue, Cascorez Ⓣ, looks like library paste and spreads as smoothly, but becomes transparent when dry. It sets in from 20 to 30 minutes on most woods, and almost instantly on balsa, cardboard, paper, and fabrics. Developed by the Chemical Division of the Borden Co., it was tested by technicians on typical home gluing jobs, including furniture construction, veneering, inlay work, and household repairs.
THE front section of an auto frame and two pieces of 1½" pipe form the base of this heavy-duty harrow built by Art Johansson, of Poulsbo, Wash. Note that the spring clevis left on each chassis piece was used to hold the spacer and steel rod. The teeth, taken from an old harrow, are set about 9½" apart with the center tooth of the rear row located on the centerline of the frame.
A COUPLE of small jars set in a block of wood can be temper savers. One jar holds glue and the other water. When you’re gluing up small parts, put the brush in the water jar instead of laying it on the edge of the workbench. Then when you finish the job, stick the brush upright in its hole to dry, and screw the caps on the two jars.
As THE chrome-plated top of this lightweight plastic case is slipped back, each cigarette pops up from its individual compartment. Rows are staggered, so one smoke is released at a time. The case, which holds a full pack, is manufactured by the Premier Plastic Corp., of Chicago, and is priced at about $2. It is available in black, emerald, or maroon.
You can soften thermoplastic in the kitchen oven, but trying to form it without the conveniences of your workbench will soon convince you that a shop oven would be a fine thing. I built an automatically controlled one for less than $7, of which $2 went for a used range-top oven and $3 for a new electric hot plate.
NEEDING a glue brush that had vanished from my cellar bench, I made a hurry-up substitute that proved so good I’m still using it. A 2" length of soft windshield wiper hose was partly slipped on an ordinary lead pencil. Then 1" of the hose was slit into strips 1/16" wide with scissors.
A FRAGMENT of an old steel rule or tape will help you set an adjustable hole cutter right the first time. Measure the shank of the pilot drill. Then grind an amount equal to half the shank diameter off the end of the rule, shortening the first inch.
NATURAL gas piped from Texas to Ohio will get a big boost from this giant, 24,000hp. gasoline engine. Largest of its kind, the Cooper-Bessemer engine drives a compressor that will help pump the gas. Its ten cylinders have an 18-inch bore and a 20-inch stroke.
AMATEUR astronomers needn’t do a lot of mathematical pencilwork with this clear, all-plastic celestial globe. A graduated base and two movable rings make it possible to determine directly the positions of the stars and the paths of the planets.
THIS new studio speedlamp, called the Kodatron Ⓣ, is twice as powerful as the Eastman model it replaces. Its 1/5,000-sec. flash, almost as brilliant as sunlight, permits use of lens apertures as small as f/11 or f/16. Adjustments include reflector wings, to control the quantity of light on the subject, and a telescopic stand that can be extended up to 10 feet.
LIKE to read in bed while listening to the radio? This combination bed lamp and radio, made to clip over the headboard, makes it easy to do both without cluttering up your bedside table. The four-tube superhet radio and tubular, nonglaring lamp operate separately or together on AC or DC. Made by Mitchell Mfg. Co., of Chicago, the unit measures only 9½ by 5½ by 7 in.
THIS new high-speed Bausch and Lomb machine can edge 300 to 400 eyeglass lenses a day. A precision chuck permits exact centering of the lenses, while spring holders prevent them from turning. A new gauge cuts cheeking time from 20 minutes to three.
WIDELY scattered logging teams in the Canadian wilds are using two-way, portable radios to warn each other of storms and forest fires, get weather forecasts, and report their progress to the mill. Made by GE, the 60-watt, FM radios consist of a transmitter and receiver shock-mounted in small wardrobe trunks.
NEITHER prowling dogs nor wintry winds can overturn a garbage can held by the elevated rack shown above. Since it rotates on the supporting post, the rack can be installed to swing over a fence for collection. Called the Garba-vator Ⓣ, it’s made by Highland Industries, Inc., of Denver.
THIS new electric bottle warmer simplifies the problem of feeding Junior on long auto trips. Plugged into the dashboard cigarette lighter and hung from any handy knob, it warms a bottle of milk or a can of baby food in about eight minutes.
Two portable laundry-tub washing machines now are available. Tub-O-Wash above, clamps on a tub. Made by Victor Electric Products, Inc., Cincinnati, Ohio, it s priced about $45. Metro Washer T, which sits in the tub, is made by Metropole Machine Corp., Long Island City, N. Y. About $60.
Metropole Machine Corp.
Motor Drives Home Sharpener
In this kitchen aid, a 115-volt AC motor spins an abrasive wheel at 3500 r.p.m. You draw knives through clips that hold them at the correct angle for sharpening. Weighing 3¾ lb., the device measures 3½" by 3½" by 8½", sells for about $12, and is made by the Cory Corp., Chicago.
Metropole Machine Corp.
Nonmarring Radio Cabinet
Cigarettes burn out on this cabinet without leaving a mark, while finish-scarring liquids such as alcohol, salt water, or citric acid do not harm it. The manufacturer adds that the cabinet will not warp, splinter, or crack. The mahogany-like synthetic is Micarta Ⓣ, a Westinghouse phenolic laminate recently applied to radios by the company’s Home Radio Division.
Metropole Machine Corp.
These playingchip racks keep the card table orderly and are complemented by matching combination coaster-ash trays that hold a drink and a cigarette. The Sutone Company, of Hollywood, Calif., makes both pieces in a brown or black plastic that is burnproof and unaffected by hot water.
Metropole Machine Corp.
Plastic Screens Baby Carriage
Designed for comfort in either hot or cold weather, this baby coach by Thayer, Inc., New York, N. Y., has plastic side screens that may be covered with snap flaps. The flexible mesh does not rust, corrode, or fade and may be cleaned with a damp cloth Price is about $45.
Metropole Machine Corp.
Bed Legs Snap On
Coil springs become a bed in a jiffy when six hardwood legs are snapped to the iron frame. Made by Colson Bros., of Los Angeles, the legs stand 7" high and are held in place by heavy wire clips. The two center legs stand on nonskid rubber feet; the others rest on metal gliders. Price: $5.95.
Metropole Machine Corp.
Tray Catches Stray Drips
Damage or discoloration of bathroom floors is avoided with the aluminum Drip Not Ⓣ tray that clamps under a toilet tank. The moisture that condenses on the cold tank surface is piped directly into the bowl through a small hose. Laufenberg, Inc., of Milwaukee, Wis., is the maker.
Metropole Machine Corp.
Made of clear plastic, this little combination juicer, strainer, and server gives you just the amount of lemon juice ,you want. As the top and bottom handles are brought together, a lemon quarter is squeezed and strained. The gadget is offered by Crystalier Co., of New York, N. Y., at $1.25.
WRITING about science looks easy when it’s done well. A lot of scientists, teachers, newspapermen, and enthusiastic amateurs try it every day. Most of them find that it is much harder work than they had thought. Very few do it well. That’s why the same person’s by-line is likely to appear not once but many times in POPULAR SCIENCE.