Thanks for the article on the CB-77 [“Hot Little Honda,” Oct.]. Here in Japan, motorcycles outnumber cars because of their comparative cheapness and the country’s small roads. Honda puts out a variety of motorcycles ranging from 50cc. to 305cc. in displacement and from around 40,000 yen (just over $110) to 190,000 yen (about $525) in price.
The worst nightmare of the space program is the obvious one: Suppose a manned capsule conks out after it is in orbit? The astronaut would be stuck—forever. The vision of a brave man slowly freezing or starving to death while the whole world listens gives even tough-minded planners the willies.
A monthly column to help you prepare yourself for a better job
Dr. Lewis R. Fibel
There are 236 schools in the country where you can. Many have extensive research facilities and offer fellowships. For information check your public library or write: Oak Ridge Institute of Nuclear Studies Oak Ridge, Tenn. Ask for the second edition of its directory, Educational Programs and Facilities in Nuclear Science and Engineering.
1873 “The steam engine has been traced to Hero of Alexandria. The Romans used movable type. A magnifying lens has been found at Ninevah. The Thames Tunnel was anticipated by one the Babylonians built under the Euphrates. And the ancient Egyptians had a Suez Canal.
Notice the lack of emphasis on “permanent-permanent” antifreeze this winter? There’s a reason. For two years a battle on antifreezes has been waged among three giants of the chemical industry. Union Carbide stiffened its neck a couple of years ago when Dow Chemical introduced an extended-life antifreeze good for a couple of winters.
Leave a capsule in space? Here are answers by Dr. von Braun
For outside inspection: an air lock
For high velocity: hydrogen
More answers by Dr. von Braun: Dead moon? Erupting sun?
BEFORE this decade is out, the President of the United States has promised, we shall have placed an American on the moon. The man in charge of the big rockets for this job is Wernher von Braun. The announcement that Dr. von Braun will become a regular contributor to POPULAR SCIENCE is the proudest statement this magazine has made in the 91 years it has been reporting the progress of science.
IF MY daily mail is a suitable yardstick, space science is a popular science indeed. I would not be able to get any other work done were I to try to answer systematically all those questions that find their way to my desk. POPULAR SCIENCE’S invitation to write a monthly column on my favorite subject was thus received as both challenge and relief.
Four people and a pooch discover some weird things about living in a house on wheels
These were the things we liked most about the house car
These were the things that could stand some improvement
MIND you, I am not one to start arguments before breakfast, but on this particular morning I figured I had to lower the boom on my wife. “Why,” I asked her, trying to sound civil, “are you putting a mop in the car?” “For the floor,” she answered, looking innocently wideeyed as usual.
FOR three years now the battle has raged—in Detroit, in auto-agency service garages throughout the land, and in oil-company circles—about extended lubrication. The issue: Is that stretched, 30,000-mile lubrication period and its companion, the 4,000-to-6,000-mile oil change, a service to the motorist —or a danger?
The news for '63: more and better machines, easy-start engines
Gas engines and electric motors ease the labor of removing snow
THIS winter of ’63 may go down as the one in which snow throwers came to stay. Not so long ago, the owner of a motorized snow remover was a rare sight—and not always the envy of his neighbors. For many of the early machines were hastily cobbled-up contraptions that whirred and clattered but often didn’t really move much snow.
Here’s country-club styling, automatic shift, and a four-wheel drive
FACTS ON THE JEEP WAGONEER
WHEN you see the new Jeep Wagoneer for the first time, you're in for a batch of surprises. The first is that it's stylish enough to impress the Joneses. Doors open unusually wide—nearly 90 degrees. The bench seats are comfortable. Instruments are well placed.
IT LOOKS like any of several foreign subcompacts—crisp, straight lines, kiddy-wagon wheelbase. Outwardly it’s just a Triumph 1200 (Herald) with slightly different trim. True, a 97.39inch six (a Vanguard with smaller bore) lurks under the bonnet.
Rocket-engine casings for some of our big solidpropellent missiles are now being made of fiberglass instead of steel. They are stronger and lighter than steel, and require no insulation liner since fiber-glass itself is a heat insulator.
Typical of current disk design is this brake, used on Studebaker front wheels this year. Brake disk is attached to wheel and is gripped, as in a vise, by a caliper anchored to knuckle of frontwheel spindle. Friction pads contact only a small fraction of total periphery of disk.
It’s a tough problem—and it arises when you least expect it. To take you off the spot, here are common-sense pointers gathered from the police
Every driver now and then gets sore when another driver cut him off. But should you run to the cops?
The center-line crosser
When you see an accident happen
The driver who wouldn’t be a witness
Should You Tell on the Other Driver?
E. D. Fales Jr.
ON A cross-country trip the other day two tourists in a green Ford saw a car weaving wildly. The passenger in the Ford said: "We're coming to a tollgate. You'd better report him.” The driver said: “No. I’m no busybody.” “He may kill somebody.” “Well, that’s for the police to worry about.”
If the wearer of this helmet looks at you disapprovingly, you’re dead. The headpiece enables a helicopter pilot to aim his guns and missiles simply by staring at the target. Pressing a firing button on his control stick then makes the kill.
With 16 fat pneumatic tires free-wheeling on each of its two tracks, this 9½-ton military vehicle pulls itself with ease through deep Mississippi muck or heavy Colorado snow. The Borg-Warner wheel-and-track Airoll was tested with equal success on fine-grain beach sand.
Giant spacecraft on the way, outgrowing today's launching system, will use this radical new one
Alden P. Armagnac
UP-ENDED on a crawler bigger than a baseball diamond, our 350-foot moon rocket will march dramatically two miles along the skyline from assembly building to launch pad. Powered by diesel generators and electric motors, the enormous carrier vehicle will move on eight tanklike treads.
Popular Science finds this new breed of fast, deep-keeled boat as adept at family cruising as it is at racing
Moppie’s 560 horses put long stretches of the Atlantic behind us fast. This is where Bertrams first proved their rough-water ability
WE’VE just tied up in this deepsea fishing capital after a highspeed, never-slow-down run across 50-plus miles of open Atlantic. We left Port Everglades, Fla., just two hours and 18 minutes ago, in Dick Bertram’s personal Moppie—a 31-foot fiberglass hull of new design.
The Bertram handles as well as it looks. This 25-foot model showed us many neat tricks that demonstrate stability of the hull design
WE CAME back from Bimini in even better time than on the outbound trip. Waves were down to a couple of feet in height, so we set the throttles at 3,100 r.p.m. I had the wheel, and again we didn't alter the throttle setting for the whole 50 miles from Bimini to the harbor approaches of Port Everglades.
Here's how a Bertram is built. Reinforced fiber-glass in multiple layers gives a tough hull that resists shock, is immune to rot
MOST boatmen love to peek under floorboards. They like to know how their boat is put together—to help judge what kind of punishment it will take to pull her apart. A fiber-glass boat is a triumph not only of marine architecture but also of chemistry.
ALONG-TIME dream of aviation designers is now very close: an airplane with wings that can open or shut in flight like the blade of a knife —allowing a pilot to “shift gears” in the sky. They call it TFX—Tactical Fighter, Experimental—and every big aviation company in the U.S. and Europe has been hoping to pluck this biggest, juiciest plum left on the tree:
Baltimore says “Yes”—and some 40 other police departments go along. House pets by day, law enforcers by night, these trained, fearless dogs save lives, protect property, catch criminals —and prevent crime
THE police dog came closer. The still Maryland air carried cleanly the sounds of his panting and sniffing as I crouched, hidden behind a thicket. Suddenly, he saw me. I started to run, then turned just as the dog pounced. His angry teeth clamped onto my right arm, and 120 pounds of snarling German shepherd threw me to the ground.
The following patents have been issued on these inventions: Antenna—No. 3,045,952 to L. E. Underwood, Hayward, Calif.; Mirror—No. 3,048,084 to H. J. Iannuzzi, 53 Frederick Ave., Medford, Mass.; Pulley—No. 3,048,048 to L. P. Weston, Gibbon, Neb.; Presser— No. 3,048,310 to M. R. Dosal, P.O. Box 53-62, Miami Shores, Fla.;
Yes, say the experts. Some day you may be able to breathe a vaccine against sniffles—and prevent cancer, too
First, what is a virus?
How scientists think one type of “cold” virus infects a cell
Are viruses themselves alive?
Are they really so tough?
What about vaccines? Don’t they prevent infection?
How does the body fight a virus infection?
But can’t you put a lot of different types of virus in one vaccine?
Just how many kinds of colds are there?
Are any of these mild groups related?
Then a common cold vaccine might have to contain 150 kinds of virus?
Is there any hope for a vaccine?
You mean I won’t have to have a shot in the arm?
How does making cold vaccines painless and more efficient solve the multiple-ingredient problem?
Will vaccines eventually solve all the virus problems—from colds to flu epidemics?
What about “real” epidemics, like flu? Will we continue to have them?
You mean a pig can catch flu?
But the virus doesn’t always get weaker?
You mean a virus—a “cold” virus— may cause cancer?
EVERY time you catch a cold, you catch a different disease. Or at least a disease you haven’t had for a while. The same goes for flu. If you come down with it twice this winter, the chances are it will be Asian flu the first time (it’s at the peak of its two-year cycle).
Snow grippers attached to the drive wheels can be folded back against the hub when the road is clear, and repositioned without fuss when needed again. Hinged arms, held flat against a circular plate in the off position, are released by pulling a pin in each.
A strange breed of tiny souped-up .22s is sparking a wild and wacky sport for gun buffs
“Hot” guns are as weird and wonderful as the ammo they shoot
Why the hot .22s are so deadly
BELIEVE it or not, both of the cartridges you see below are the same caliber. Both are .22s. The one on the right is the familiar little .22 Short, a favorite of back-yard plinkers for years. The huge shell on the left has a bullet of exactly the same diameter
Work-anywhere tape recorders have started a new hobby
With a little ingenuity you'll find new uses for a carry-along recorder every day
John L. Parker
RECENTLY two imaginative Arizona hunters borrowed an old hen turkey and recorded her querulous gobbling on a portable tape recorder. Later, by playing the tape out on the desert one weekend, they lured ten coyotes and two bobcats into shooting range.
How good are they? Some experts predict all amateur cameras will eventually be fully automatic
How a typical exposure-control mechanism adjusts the lens opening
Spring drive advances the film 10 frames without rewinding
How Fujica’s exposure-shutter programing works
What You Get for Your Money
TO a degree considered impossible a decade ago, today’s automatic cameras literally “think” for themselves. All you do is aim the camera and shoot. Cost? For less than $20 you can own an automatic that even the youngsters can use, or you can flirt with a $300 gem, or settle for something comfortably in between.
It isn’t as hard or as costly as you may think to get in on this exciting tool-of-many-uses
You can both join and cut metal with a dual torch like this
How a two-way cutting-welding torch does both jobs
Tank caddy like this is a fine exercise in welding know-how
AS YOU adjust the needle valves to feed a one-to-one mixture of oxygen and acetylene through a gas welding torch, the softly purring tongue of bluish flame from the tip reaches a phenomenal temperature—nearly 6,300 degrees. This is hot enough to fuse steel (melting point 2,500 degrees) as a match flame melts candle wax.
DRAWING an ellipse with a thread and pins is far from ideal in a machine shop. The most accurate mechanical method is with an ellipse trammel and track. You can make your own. The principle is easily understood once you see the sliding bars move along the major and minor axes and the ellipse begins to take shape.
Often you can use a tool you already have when you want to surface rough wood or reduce its thickness
Two more smoothing jobs you can do on a table saw
Even a drum sander becomes a thickness planer with this jig
R. J. De Cristoforo
THE thickness planer is a beauty of a tool, but cost keeps it out of most small woodworking shops. Usually you can get along without one since surfaced lumber is as available as your nearest lumber yard. What do you do, however, when you do want to accomplish thicknessplaner operations?
SPIN a small handwheel at the top of this drill press and the heavy table glides effortlessly up or down to the exact height you want. The elevator is simply a pair of bicvcle-like sprockets with roller chain running between them to hoist the table.
ORBITAL is the word for this unusual steam engine. The cylinders orbit around a central shaft, and it looks like something from outer space. As a conversation piece, it has these points to talk about: It’s self-starting from any position, with no dead center.
This ingenious portable cement mixer was designed and built by J. V. Rupert, an Ohio fruitgrower. Basically, it’s a 55-gallon oil drum mounted on a farm tractor and rotated by the power take-off. The tractor hydraulic mechanism also is put to use to raise the bottom end of the drum when cement has been mixed and is ready to be poured out. Two idler wheels mounted under the open end let the drum rotate easily when power is applied by means of a belt.—John Krill, North Lima, Ohio.
Sprocket gears aren’t always easy to find in the size that you need and can be fairly expensive. I make my own, tailored to ladder chain. I even form my own T strip: I scratch a line down the center of a flat metal strip, fold it lengthwise, bend back a flange on each side, and run solder into the slit.
Want to improve your glass-cutting skill? Learn to recognize these common defects and know what causes each of them
How to cut a perfect, circle
Leo. H. Kenney
A PERFECT cut in glass leaves edges that are square to the surface and free from flakes, flares, chips, and shark’s teeth. These terms may be unfamiliar to you, but if you’ve ever tried to cut glass, you have seen them. You’ll recognize them in the photos.
You can make a handy pump for filling model-plane tanks. Remove the ball from a ball-point cartridge by touching it lightly to a grindstone. Twist the tip from the tube and cement it to a hand-lotion dispenser.—Robert Micals, Freehold, N. J.
Each time I parked my car outside last winter I stretched a plastic floor protector across the windshield, anchoring the corners with magnets. When ready to drive, I pulled the cover off and stored it in the hrunk. Not once did I have to scrape off ice or wipe away condensation.
A man’s dresser is rarely graced with a mirror. To avoid trips to the bathroom to knot your tie, make this old-style mirror stand. It has two drawers to keep cufflinks and other small items from straying. Before you start construction, buy a mirror in an unfinished frame—or make your own with mitered molding.
Bet you can’t guess how the pieces at left were machined. Actually, they weren’t machined at all. They were shaped with grinding wheels in a process recently pioneered by Norton Co., well-known maker of abrasives. Unlike surface grinders, the wheels are used to remove large amounts of metal, forming actual shapes.
A rotary cutter spinning at 14,500 r.p.m. does the hard work for you in this low-cost electric hand plane. A removable guide allows the tool to edge-plane (left) or surface-plane (right). The front shoe is adjustable like a jointer table to vary depth of cut and to keep the tool riding level. A ½-hp. motor permits cuts up to 1/16" deep in a single pass. $44.95. Wen Products, 5810 Northwest Highway, Chicago.
A metal nibbler
This new metal-cutting power nibbler slices through sheet steel at the rate of 40" a minute. The tool, designed to cost less than conventional nibblers, is aimed at home-shop craftsmen as well as professionals. It has a three-amp motor, a replaceable carbide punch, and will handle all metals up to 18-gauge steel. $64.95. Skil Corp., 5033 Elston Ave., Chicago.
Flip a switch and you can select either orbital or straight-line action on this dual sander. Set on orbital, the tool gives you 4,900 oscillations a minute for fast stock removal. For fine smoothing, you get 5,000 straight strokes a minute. The tool has a shockproof handle and a front knob for two-hand control. $39.95. Disston Div., H. K. Porter Co., Porter Bldg., Pittsburgh.
Transistorizing your car’s ignition is easy with this new kit. A meter and adjustable ballast resistor allow adjustment of current draw to the optimum setting for any car. Complete kit sells by mail order for $34.95. Heath Co., Benton Harbor, Mich.
Designed for the novice builder, this new line of hi-fi kits is packaged to make construction easy even if you have to work on the kitchen table. Parts are safely stored simply by closing the wings any time work must be interrupted. The kit manual gives theory along with the step-by-step instructions. A continuity probe in every kit permits checking each stage as you finish it. Harmon-Kardon, Westbury, New York.
A battery-powered receiver lets language students hear taped programs or the teacher’s voice without plugging in cords. Students may also record their own speech and compare pronunciation with that on tape. Electronic Futures, New Haven, Conn.
Claimed to be the world’s smallest seven-transistor, superhet radio, this tiny unit is said to perform as well as the larger pocketsize radios. It is powered by two small mercury cells. Imported from Japan, the Micronic Ruby sells here for about $22.
RTV silicone rubber
RTV (room temperature vulcanizing) liquid silicone rubber, one of the popular new miracle materials, is now sold in a mixing-dispensing package. The liquid silicone cures to a resilient rubber after addition of a catalyst. The curing agent is squeezed from an attached tube into a plastic envelope containing the rubber. The two are mixed by kneading, then dispensed through a plastic spout.
PRACTICAL portable TV has finally arrived. With this tiny set you can watch TV just about anywhere within range of a TV station—on a park bench, in a canoe, or riding a horse. It also can be plugged into a wall outlet in the living room. I carried one around with me for several weeks, trying it under a wide variety of conditions.
Wired into a circuit, the Transistor Protector guards against costly damage resulting from misapplied voltage or current surges. Littelfuse, Inc., Des Plaines, I11.
THE kit version of the Thomas two-manual transistor organ is said to give you the same music as the factory-assembled instrument. Heath engineers have adapted the design to make home construction as easy as that expected of ordinary hi-fi kits.
A new material for ceilings—plastic foam —is molded into textured 24"-square tiles with shiplap edges. You can snap them into a T-bar grid system for a dropped ceiling (as shown above) or fasten them directly to an existing ceiling with nails or adhesive. The normal 1" thickness has good insulating qualities, but you can order tiles up to 8" thick for special requirements. Called NuWay ceiling tile, the material is made from Dylite foam by the United Progress Co., Albany, N.Y.
This portable light plant weighs only 14 pounds but is capable of sustained production of 250 to 300 watts at 110 volts AC. It contains a brushless alternator-type generator turned by a ¾-hp., two-cycle Ohlsson & Rice engine at 6,300 r.p.m. You start it on a built-in battery, then switch to magneto once it’s running. It will light several lamps or power an appliance within the rated capacity. Dyno-Mite is made by Nichols Industries, Jacksonville, Tex., and will sell for less than $100.
Veneer-faced paneling V-grooved in random-board widths is now made 7/16" thick. Unlike ordinary ¼" plywood, it can be nailed or cemented directly to studs with no solid backing or back-up furring strips. Grooves are arranged so that one is always over a stud to conceal nails.
This galley fits handily in a 17' 5" boat. The unit includes a two-burner alcohol stove, stainless-steel sink, three-gallon water tank. There’s a storage cabinet below to hold kitchen items. Mounted in the cockpit, the galley gives a medium-size boat big-boat convenience. For Glasspar boats. Glasspar Co., Santa Ana, Calif.
New automatic-adjusting rollers
New automatic-adjusting rollers (left) conform to lapstrake hulls, give firm support. Concentric grooves permit roller surface to bend, change shape to give support along entire 9" length. Featured on Dana Hull-Gard trailers. Parish Pressed Steel Div., Dana Corp., Reading, Pa.
The Seastaple is an explosive imbedment anchor. Just lower it over the side. When it hits bottom a cartridge fires, driving the anchor into the sea floor. When load is applied to the cable, the anchor assumes a horizontal position. Depending on anchor size, it will bury itself from 6 to 34 feet. Price varies according to size. Pneumodynamics Corp., Cleveland.
Here’s the first sailboat ever made by the world’s largest motorboat builder. The sloop is 35 feet long, has accommodations for six in two cabins, a 60-hp. auxiliary engine. Chris-Craft, Pompano Beach, Fla.
Boat from three auto tubes
Three regular auto inner tubes form the hull of this Converta-Boat. They're attached by steel tubing to a marine-plywood deck. A backrest on the seat supplies comfort. A mount takes up to a two-hp. motor. Easily transported on top of a car, the entire craft weighs 26 pounds, draws four inches of water. $49.95. Kon-Ko, Inc., Haleyville, Ala.
Hail-O-Matic portable electronic megaphone can be heard for over two miles. It listens, too—will pick up and amplify voices, foghorns, bell buoys. Unit is completely transistorized, operates on batteries or boat’s 12-volt system. Can also be permanently mounted. $149. Instr-O-Matics, 3181 N. Elston Ave., Chicago.
Twin fire extinguisher
New fire extinguisher is designed to be carried from boat to car to home. Bracket also holds spare charge of dry chemical. Port-A-Pac: in cylinder or spherical models, $20.95. Ansul Chemical Co., Marinette, Wis.
Nav-I-Log not only indicates speed, but keeps track of how far you have traveled. An underwater unit mounts through the hull, with a recording head in the cockpit. It comes in three speed ranges, up to 45 knots. In operation, the underwater rotor sends electical impulses to the recording head. $177.50. Hurricane Marine Products, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
How to change a faucet washer when there isn’t one
Those modem faucets may seem confusing, but they're really easy to maintain
How the familiar old faucets and the newer types compare
Wheel step makes engine work easier
Installing gutters is a one-man job
SLICKING up the old water faucet to meet the demands of modern design, manufacturers have camouflaged many parts so you can hardly find them. Understandably, this discourages many householders from attempting what used to be a routine chore.
A recent addition to the Argus line is this 35mm singlelens reflex with a fast 58mm f/1.7 Sekor lens. It has a pentaprism reflex finder with a Fresnel-type focusing screen and center. Other features include a rapid return mirror, a depth-of-field preview button, and provision for an accessory exposure meter that fits the top of the camera and couples to the shutter speed dial. It retails for $179.95. Argus, Inc., 5950 Touhy Ave., Chicago 48.
Small electronic flash with cadmium battery
These compact, one-piece electronic-flash units operate from rechargeable nickelcadmium batteries or AC. Mecablitz 109 is $59.95. Model 110 is $74.95, packs twice the power. Burleigh Brooks, Englewood, N.J.
Flick a switch, and this single sealed-beam lamp throws either flood or concentrated spot beam. The Mobilite Twin Beam sells for $17.95. Flex Electric Products, Inc., Long Island City 1, N.Y.
This easy-loading 8mm film editor uses a 6-volt light source behind a 50-by-70mm screen. Single-wind crank turns film forwards or backwards. It accepts 400-foot reels. Price: about $35. Bell & Howell, Chicago 45.
ICE slicks on the road, and snow that thickened on laboring wipers, made Gus Wilson slow prudently for the turn off the dead end of Route 80. It was cruelly cold, and even the full blast of the heater made the car only bearable. With relief he swung onto a county road that led to town and the Model Garage.
This truck is chiefly frame and hydraulic jack. It can back up around a cargo container, pick it up, and raise or lower it for loading or unloading at any height from ground level to a dock 60 inches high. It’s made by Techno Products, Inc., of Cleveland, which provides interchangeable bodies 6 feet wide and 4 to 16 feet long.