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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 90.djvu/99

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Popular Science Monthly


��A New Railway-Handcar Mowing-Machine

THE railway-handcar has been converted into a rail- way mowing-machine. The three men required to operate it are able to do the work of thirty men with scythes, and when the car is mowing at its maximum speed it can cut down from two to four miles of weeds and brush an hour. When the mowing blades are not in operation the car can travel from eighteen to twenty miles an hour. The motive power is a six -horsepower gasoline engine.

Thomas McGee, of Madi- son, South Dakota, is the in- ventor of the machine. He has made the mowing blades vertically adjustable, so that they may be moved into different positions and to different inclinations for mowing upon level or inclined surfaces. Furthermore, the mow^- ing mechanism at each side of the car is controlled independently, so that one mower may be thrown out of operation while the other continues to cut.

The accompanying illustration shows the mowing-machine car with cutting blades raised to pass through center-guards. When the blades are operated they cut a >wath five feet wide on each side of the car. After the weeds and brush have been removed another machine — the railway disking machine — is brought into operation in its wake. This machine has a series of disks which smooth down the gravel just bevond the ends of the ties.

����The mac' runs at from two to four miles an hour, cutting a five-foot swath on each side of the track with the blades

��A supply pipe connected the boiler of the engine with the pipes of the heating plant and made a whole theater comfortable

A Steam Tractor Makes a Theater Audience Comfortable

WHAT is the cheapest and most satisfactory method of heating an opera house u-hen a new heating plant is being installed? This was the question put to the manager of the city opera house in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. A number of performances were scheduled, the weather was stormy and cold, and the theater interior had to be made comfortable for the audiences.

The manager looked about him for a means to heat his theater. Several methods were suggested, among them the utilization of a big steam tractor. This last appealed to him and he had the tractor run up an alley to the stage entrance. A supply pipe connected the boiler of the engine with the pipes of the heating plant of the theater, the pipe being run through a window in the rear of the stage, as shown in the accom- panying illustration.

This arrangement proved satisfactory', causing the mana- ger a minimum of expense and inconvenience.

It kept the heating plant working at its greatest ca- pacity and no one except those who were acquainted with the facts realized that the steam tractor sheltered against the side of the building had any part to play in making the audience comfortable and the show successful.

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