Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 91.djvu/446

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430 Popular Science Monthly

A Tin-Pan Orchestra to Scare the Birds Away from the Garden

A SCARECROW is often nothing more than a place where the birds may rest after enjoying a feast of delectable sprouts.

Therefore, the farmers of Imperial Valley, California, have discarded it as a means of keeping pests out of sprouting vege- table gardens. They have found an ef- fective substi- tute which keeps not only birds, but dogs and cats away. The substitu- tion is an im- provised or- chestra com- posed of tin pans strung on

wires, shown in the accompanying photo- graph. When the wind blows, the pans clatter together and the music set up causes the birds to move on to more har- monious quarters. Threads are attached from the wires to the branches of nearby trees, so that when there is no wind, the pans are rattled if the birds alight on the limbs. Dr. J. B. Keller, of Banning, California, is the originator of the garden orchestra.

���Tin pans strung on wires make a clatter in the wind and scare the birds away from the garden or orchard

��Thrusting Spears for Cavalry — Which Can- not Thrust

INSPIRED, per- haps, by the gallant use of spears by the knights of the Middle Ages, an in- ventor in Rock Island, Illinois, has taken out - patents on cavalry spears which are to be thrust into an enemy me- chanically. His weapon consists of a short, sharp- pointed spear carried on an extension tong on either side of a horse. Each tong hinges on a saddle arm so that by moving a lever,

��the spears can be swung in any direction. A troop of horses dashing onward with the spears facing front would have a telling effect on the enemy — in theory.

For, you see, to thrust these spears for- ward in the faces of the enemy would take the strength of a giant. By pulling down on the extension levers, the motion imparted to the operating racks are supposed to ro- tate the pin- ioned arms, and thus open the tongs. But unfortunately, the pinioned arm construc- tion has been made just the inverse of the lever! This, together with the enormous friction which would develop by the mem- bers guiding the arms connected with the pinioned ones, would make it necessary for a half ton pull to thrust out the spears! Even if it were possible to thrust them, this weapon affords no protection from the opponents' cold steel! The device could hardly be ex- pected to get further than the patent spec- ification drawings. However, it is a patriotic effort on the part of the inventor and as such is deserving of consideration. The flights of imagination of the inventive genius of the day may result in many impractical devices, but ideas are being constantly advanced which only need rounding off and developing to make them useful.

��Swinging lever' Extension lever

���By operating the levers, this device is supposed to thrust its spears in any direction upon the enemy

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