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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 90.djvu/954

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938

��Popular Science Monthly

��A Belt Joint for Use in a Damp Place

��THERE seemed to be no end to the trouble caused by a belt which had to be run in a wet place, for the reason that the joint could not be kept glued, and a laced end jarred the oil out of the bearings.

���A V-shaped splice with the laces in a straight line with the grain of the belt

The method illustrated was adopted and was found to give good service in many other places of belt trouble. It involves a pointed joint. The exact center of the belt should be found for the pointed end; then it is cut and laid over the other end and marked for the V-notch. This will make a perfect joint. The holes for the belt-lace are marked with a square to make them so that the lace will run in a straight line with the belt. This will make a smooth repair for places where the belt must be taut and run at a high speed.

��A Dust Mulch Cultivator to Keep Moisture in Soil

THE farmer's supply of moisture for maturing a crop of corn often depends upon his skill in preserving the Spring

���This device is dragged over a crusted surface to make a dust blanket above the damp soil

season's rainfall. This may be done by keeping a dust mulch or "dust-blanket"

��over his cultivated field. With this aim in view, some farmers drag a mower wheel between the corn-rows. While this is suc- cessful in a large degree, it has been found that the wheel often injures the brace roots of the corn.

The implement that will make the best mulch with the least injury to the corn is the one described. Procure two boards 5 ft. long, 10 in. wide, and 2 in. thick for the frame. Beneath this frame run cross sec- tions of 2 by 4-in. material about I2 in. apart diagonally with frame of drag. Let the back ones be longer than the front ones and extend toward the inside of the frame. The frame is fastened together at the front end with an eye-bolt bent in a U-form so it can be fastened through the frame. This allows the drag to take an A-form if the chain hitch is fastened on the outside corners. Across the rear end is an adjust- able chain for regulating the width of the spread. This is used to allow the drag to spread and close, so as to accommodate itself to the width of the corn rows. It works all the ground between them, and does not injure the brace roots. The instrument is especially needed after the corn has become too large to cultivate with a cultivator. — Ralph A. Page,

��Collecting Gas from Mud in a Stream of Water

WITH such simple apparatus as a bottle, a funnel and a stick, one can obtain gas from the mud at the bottom of a pond or stream. If wading, select a place where the water is waist deep or slightly deeper; if in a boat find shallower water. Punching the mud with the stick causes bubbles of gas to rise. Insert the neck of the funnel into the neck of the bottle, submerge both, and after the bottle has filled with water, hold the mouth of the funnel over the rising bubbles, making them enter the bottle and displace the water. When a sufficient quantity of gas has accumulated, remove the funnel, keep- ing the bottle inverted and its mouth under water until it has been corked.

The gas so collected can be made to burn with a faint blue flame by using a burner composed of a cork with a quill or a small glass tube thrust through it. Care must be exercised in changing from the solid cork to the burner, or vice versa, to prevent the gas from escaping. Use a quill which can be closed with a stopper. — Paul R. Rider, Ph.D.

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