AMERICAN WATER WORKS ASSOCIATION
Continuation of the Report of the Louisville Convention Reports of Committees—Papers Read and Discussions Thereon—Important Questions Considered—List of Exhibitors
The address of President Milne was, on motion of Mr. John Caulfield, ordered printed in the proceedings The reading of the report of the executive committee followed.
Tuesday Evening Session
Upon assembling at 8 p. m., Second Vice-President Robert J. Thomas, superintendent Waterworks, Lowell, Mass., occupied the chair Mr. Edward Wegrnan, consulting engineer of the Aqueduct Commission, New York City, delivered an interesting paper on “Ancient and Modern Waterworks,” illustrated by lantern slides. This was followed by a paper by Mr. William W. Brush, on “Floor Area Unit as a Basis for Estimating Consumption,” which was also illustrated by lantern slides and presented a method that was entirely new to most of the members. It was discussed by Messrs, Phillips, Potter and Cole, but for the lateness of the hour would probably have elicited remarks from other members.
Wednesday Morning Session
The meeting was opened with Acting President Dow R. Gwinn in the chair. Secretary Given read the report of the adjourned session of the executive committee, held at 8.30 a. m., on this date, which on motion was received and filed. Additional applications for membership were favorably reported by the executive committee, and on motion elected to membership. The following report was read by the secretary submitted by the chairman of the committee on uniform annual reports and accounts.
REPORT OF COMMITTEE ON UNIFORM ACCOUNTS AND ANNUAL REPORTS.
Baltimore, June 8, 1912.
Mr. John M. Given, secretary American Water works Association, Louisville, Ky.
Gear Sir:—On behalf of the committee on uniform accounts and annual reports, attention may be directed to the report made at the last meeting of the association, upon which no action was taken. The scheme of accounts as then presented has since been adopted by the public service commissions of Maryland and Washington, and the United States Department of Insular Affairs is now considering its adoption in connection with accounting the affairs of waterworks in the insular possessions. If the association will at the 1912 meeting of the association adopt the scheme as presented, the committee will endeavor to report at the next meeting of the association not only a form of annual report, but also a more complete and comprehensive set of instructions, for which latter there has been some demand already from those who are using the scheme upon the recommendation of the Bureau of the Census. For the information of the members of the association there is handed you herewith a copy of the monthly operating and financial report form in use by the Baltimore County Water & Electric Company, which for the past year has had the scheme of accounts in us.
Yours very truly,
ALBERT H. WEHR,
Chairman Committee on Uniform Accounts.
On motion the report was received and adopted, Secretary Given stating that when uniform account keeping systems are once fully established all plants will be put on a thoroughly comparable basis, whereas under the widely different systems now in vogue intelligent comparisons arc impossible.
NATIONAL BUREAU OR DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH.
Mr. Theodore A. Leisen, chairman of special committee on national bureau or department of health, submitted a verbal report recommending that the bill now before Congress receive the support of the membership of the association in the hope that when such bill becomes a law it will provide a competent authority, to which an appeal can be made by the waterworks interests tn prevent the pollution of streams (Referring to Senate Bill No. 1, Sixty-second Congress, second session, Report No. 619, Calendar No. 561, introduced by Mr. Owen to the committee on Public Health and National Quarantine.) Mr. M. M. Baker, of the committee, stated that the bill in its present form contains a more definite provision than when first presented for a devision of sanitary engineering which he pronounced a great step in advance, because in the earlier stages of the agitation the engineers seemed to be left out of it as an essential to the work. He thought it desirable that every member of the association should bring home to his representative in Congress the lawful demand for the bill from engineers and sanitarians. If members of Congress could be made to feel that the general public are behind the bill they would no doubt put it through promptly. He thought that it would be proper for the association to pass a resolution endorsing the bill or the movement for the creation of a bureau or department of health, as such department is needed and can do a large amount oi work along the line that Mr. Leisen suggested. It did not necessarily follow that all the work of such a bureau would have to he done by doctors, but it some of it was done by engineers there would be a better prospect of matters affecting waterworks interests being done in a more efficient manner. Mr. Wilcox stated that it is estimated that on the basis of parts per million that as much as 63 tons of sulphuric acid passes the city of McKeesport in the Youghiogheny river in one day, and urged that the American Waterworks Association should co-operate with all possible other agencies looking toward the prevention of such wholesale stream pollution. On motion the report presented by Mr. Leisen was received and the recommendations adopted. Mr. Leisen read a communication from the United Cast Iron Pipe and Foundry Company through its resident manager, Mr. Dennis H. Long, extending an invitation to all delegates, their ladies and guests to participate in an excursion trip to Mammoth Cave on the Saturday following the convention. Without objection the invitation was received with thanks.
The report of the special committee on permanent headquarters was read as follows:
REPORT OF SPECIAL COMMITTEE ON HEADQUARTERS. To the officers and members of the American Waterworks Association.
Gentlemen:—Pursuant to our appointment under the resolution passed at the Rochester convention, providing for a commitee to consider the question of permanent headquarters for the association, and to devise ways and means whereby such permanent headquarters may be secured, we bog to report that a conference was held in New York City, at which it was agreed that the object was a desirable one. and that permanent headquarters could best be obtained in the United Engineering Building on 29th street. New York City In the same building there are facilities for storage and also meeting rooms of various sizes suitable for any meetings that it might be desirable to hold in New York City. Two rooms were available at the time of our inquiry, the rental for one being $1,909 and for the other $1,-150 per annum. There would be additional charge for storage, and for meeting rooms. These rooms are large for the rental in New York City, and one of them would suffice for a beginning. More space would, no doubt, he secured at some subsequent date if it should prove desirable, and the finances of the association warranted it. In connection with such headquarters it was voted that it would be desirable to hold at least one meeting each year in New York City, at some time during the winter. To carry out this scheme would involve, in addition to the rent, the increased salary for a permanent resident secretary, giving his whole time to the work, and for a stenographer and other office expenses, so that an additional expense of several thousand dollars a year would be involved. It is obvious that the finances of the association on the present basis will not permit such an increase of expenditure. Several plans for raising additional funds were discussed.
First, to secure subscriptions from outside parties.
Second, to secure subscriptions, annual or otherwise, from manufacturers and associate members.
Third, that the active members of the association raise the necessary money by subscription or by increasing the dues, and especially by increasing the number of members. After discussion of the three propositions it was decided by the committee that it would be best not to solicit subscriptions from outsiders or manufacturers, but that the third method of raising funds from active members of the association should be adopted, and that this should be carried out as far as possible, by increasing the membership suppplemented by contributions and if necessary, by increasing the annual dues. This, we believe, complies with our instructions, and the report is respectfully submitted. Geo, H. Felix, Allen Hazen, W. P. Mason.
In connection with the foregoing, Secretary Given stated that a small booklet was in course of preparation by the committee, which it was intended to send to all waterworks not represented in the association membership at present, accompanied by a suitable letter soliciting new members and through the additional dues thereby received from increased membership to accumulate a sufficient surplus in the treasury to enable the plans for permanent headquarters to lie eventually carried into effect. This would do away with any necessity for either increasing the present amount of the yearly dues or asking for subscriptions. On motion of Mr. Wiles the report was received and ordered spread upon the minutes. Mr. John W. Alvord, chairman of the committee on incorporation, presented the following :
COMMITTEE ON INCORPORATION OF ASSOCIATION.
To the American Waterworks Association, Louisville, Ky.
Gentlemen:—Your committee appointed to investigate the subject of incorporating the American Waterworks Association for profit corporation: and to determine in which state it is preferable to incorporate, would respectfully report: We find that the laws of the various states are favorable to the incorporation of charitable and scientific associations, and that no burdensome restrictions are placed upon them. The state of Illinois is particularly favorable to such corporations, and the requirements are only those that can easily be met by this association. It is required that three citizens of the United States make application to the Secretary of State setting forth: 1. The name of the proposed corpora-
tion. 2. Its object. 3. A statement setting forth in whom the management of the corporation shall he vested, i. e., officers, and trustees or directors, and how long their term of office shall last. 4. The names of the officers and trustees. 5. The location of its principal business office in this state. This statement is filed with the Secretary of State with his fee of $10. He returns to the three applicants a certified copy of this statement, which certified copy is filed with the Recorder of Deeds in the county in which its principal business office is located, and thereupon the corporation is completely organized and can proceed to do business. A corporation of this nature does not have to pay any further fees at any time, and does not have to make reports such as business corporations are required to make.
Respectfully submitted. John W. Alvord, H. E. Keeler, J. M. Diven.
Chairman Alvord stated that the committee were not aware that they had been given power to act in the premises, and it they had so understood they would have come to the convention with incorporation papers already executed. On motion of Mr. Rosamond the report was received and the committee continued, with full power to act and with instructions to complete the actual incorporation of the association upon the lines indicated in their present report.
The question was then taken up and discussed This was followed by the reading of the
REPORT OF COMMITTEE ON ELECTROLYSIS.
To the American Waterworks Association:— Your committee on electrolysis will respectfully report that on May 13, 1912. Judge A. L. Sanborn of the United States Court handed down a decree in the Peoria electrolysis suit. A copy of this decree is attached hereto as part of the report of your committee. Your committee can find nothing which it desires to change in its original recommendations which were presented to this association twelve years ago, and which it has since, from time to time, repeated. Dabney H. Maury, William E. Foss, J. Waldo Smith, committee on electrolysis.
DECREE IN PEORIA ELECTROLYSIS CASE.
PEORIA WATERWORKS COMPANY VS. PEORIA RAILWAY COMPANY, sue LESSOR TO CENTRAL RAILWAY COMPANY.
No. 24,193. Equitv for Injunction and Relief.
This cause having heretofore come on to be heard upon the pleadings, the evidence taken herein, the report of the special master of his findings of fact and conclusions of law filed April 13, 1901, and the exceptions of the defendant to said report, and also upon the report of said master under the reference for further testimony, which report was filed June 22, 1909, and upon the exceptions of the defendant thereto; and having been argued by counsel; and the court having found and decided that complainant’s waterworks system has been and is being damaged by electrolysis caused by electricity generated by defendant, and that complainant cannot prevent such injury; that defendant shall take such measure, within a reasonable time, as to practically and substantially prevent further injury from electrolysis, and that complainant co-operate with defendant to prevent or lessen the escape of electricity from the rails and from the water pipes in such manner as to cause injury thereto.
1. It is thereupon adjudged and decreed as follows: The defendant, Peoria Railway Company, and its officers, agents and servants, after one year from and after date of this decree, are enjoined and restrained from injuring the w’ater pipes, service pipes, hydrants and all other structures and property of complainant, Peoria Waterworks Company, through or by tile escape of electric current from the rails, or structures or property of the defendant.
2. It is further adjudged and decreed that complainant, Peoria Waterworks Company, its officers, agents and servants, shall permit defendant, its officers, servants and agents, at their own expense at all reasonable times hereafter upon written request therefor, and within a reasonable time after such rquest, to inspect its watermains, service pipes, and hydrants, in order to determine whether injury from electrolysis is being continued, the extent of the same, the flow of the electric current upon the piping system, and the extent thereof, and such other matters as may be necessary in order to determine whether defendant is complying with the terms of this decree.
3. It is further adjudged and decreed that the findings of the special master, as far as inconsistent with this decree, are overruled, and in all other respects sustained and confirmed.
4. It is further adjudged and decreed that the court retains jurisdiction of this cause for the purpose of enforcing by appropriate orders herein, as occasion may arise or in such manner as it may determine, the terms of this decree, and either party may at any time apply to the court for such further orders or directions in harmony with this decree as it may be advised is material. 5. Within six months after the expiration of one year after the date of this decree defendant may in its discretion apply to the court, on notice of complainant, for a hearing on the question whether an order should be made for directing complainant to permit defendant to make experimental use of the “drainage system,” so called, by connecting with copper wire the rails of defendant, or some designated portion of its rail system, with complainant’s piping system, or a limited use thereof, can practically be applied to said rail and piping systems.
6. It is further ordered, adjudged and decreed that neither party have costs as against the other in this cause, and that each party shall pay onehalf of the clerk’s, marshal’s and master’s fees, and that the fees and expenses of witnesses, experts and engineers, and for examinations and tests, shall be borne by the party calling the witness or requesting the service.
(Signed.) A. L., SANBORN, Judge.
Dated May 13, 1912.
The discussion of the Question Box was temporarily suspended in order to take up the special order for the morning, election of officers, the result of which was printed in the last issue of this journal.
Wednesday Afternoon Session
President Dow R. Gwinn in the chair. The discussion of the question was resumed : On motion of Mr. Leisen it was voted that the secretary send out by mail immediately after the close of his convention Questions Nos. 3 to 28, inclusive, to the entire membership, and solicit written replies or discussions, the same to be returned to the secretary within sixty days, and replies received to be included in the regular printed proceedings of the association. Mr. F. N. Griswold then presented his paper on “Progress ol the Adoption of the National Standard Hose Coupling and Hydrant Outlet.”
Progress in the Adoption of the National Standard Hose Coupling and Hydrant Fittings for Public Fire Service
It is remarkable that in this age of advancement, when every faculty of the practical man engaged in the mechanic arts is centered upon securing uniformity in practice as to the design and proportions of the various devices and appliances in general use in the field of his endeavor, that so important and universally necessary a public utility as is that of fire hose couplings should have been permitted for so many years to escape the influence of this spirit of progress, and remain even to this day a matter subject to the caprice or ignorance of those to whom comes the responsibility of specification for and installation of such important adjuncts in public fire protection, the variety and design of which compare closely with the mental vagaries of those who are supposed to serve the public welfare, and who apparently give no thought to the necessity for securing a standard which will prove of practical use to their constituents in case of a disaster which will compel calling for aid from their neighbors. Hence, in presenting for your consideration the following remarks in relation to the National Standard hose couplings, it appeals to me that in so good a cause iteration and re-iteration is not unwarranted, and I therefore crave your indulgence in offering to you a brief outline of past endeavors to secure the standardization of this very important public utility.
During the winter of 1910-11 the city of Spring field, Mass., discarded the “Universal clutch” coupling and substituted for it the National Standard, changing over 1,350 hydrants, some of which had four outlets, at the rate of from 50 to 100 outlet replacements per day, at an average net cost of one dollar per outlet, giving credit for the old metal, sold at 9 1/2 cents per pound, and excluding cost of labor performed by the regular force of waterworks employes. Couplings on 22,000 feet of hose were changed by department employes at a like net cost of one dollar each. It is interesting to note that this work at Springfield was carried out in the winter season, and that it was accomplished without accident by the use of surprisingly simple and expeditious methods, in that where hydrant nipples were leaded-in, the use of a six-pound sledge proved an efficient means for their removal, while in the case of screwed-in nipples, an expanding wrench, entered from the outboard end of the nipples engaged the operating lugs and permitted the easy removal of the device, while the 4 1/2-inch leaded-in suction nipples were melted out by the use of a plumber s gasoline blow-torch, at the rate of five minutes per operation. This practical and unique demonstration of “how to do it” is commended to your serious consideration. Following this action at Springfield, the contiguous cities of Chicopee, Holyoke and West Springfield, each brought their equipment into conformity with the Standard, at an expense probably no greater than was that of the change in Springfield. Shreveport, La., replaced the oldtime “Feyh” coupling by installing the Standard, but we have no data as to method of procedure, nor as to the cost of the operation. In the cases of the 66 towns and cities which are known to have adopted non-standard couplings to interchange with the Standard, the work has been accomplished entirely by the regular force of public employes, and outside of the time used, the expense has been nominal, at most involving the cost of an adjustable tap and die. conforming to the pitch of the non-standard thread, by the use of which these couplings were so modified as to become readily interchangeable with the Standard. It will perhaps prove of interest to you to have cited some of the prominent cities and towns which have thus brought their equipment into harmony with the Xational Standard. Atlanta. Ga., used both 7 and 7 1/2 thread couplings for years without serious trouble from these differences, but now uses the Standard only. Watertown, N. Y., in making the change to Standard discovered that they had three different kinds of hydrant outlets, varying both in number of threads and in their outside dimensions, all of which have been made to conform to the Standard without other cost “than the castings of a die, as stated by the chief of the fire department. The number could be materially enlarged by naming some thirty other towns of less prominence which are known to have brought their equipment into conformity with the Standard, while from information not yet verified, it is believed that a number of other localities have taken like action. In addition to the above-noted instances of adaptation, the record shows the installation of the Standard in 122 localities not so listed at the date of the last issue of the Record in 1911, and as in evidence of the widespread interest aroused in this important matter of standardization, it may be stated that one prominent concern, manufacturing fire hydrants, reports having filled orders for hydrants under “National Standard” specifications for some 40 separate towns and cities, included in which number may be named Montreal, Port Hope, St. Anne and St. Joseph in the Dominion of Canada, and the town of Abonito, in Porto Rico. It is highly gratifying to be able to present to you this “report of progress,” showing so much of accomplishment in a cause of such great public importance, and thus to place on record an accounting of our stewardship of the trust assigned to our care. The advance indicated has not been attained without the expenditure of serious and persistent effort, exerted practically without support through concerted co-operation by most of the important organizations, which, having endorsed and adopted this standard as essential to widest benefit of the public welfare and safety, are at least impliedly obligated to forward iis acceptance and installation within the municipalities under their jurisdiction, and it therefore appeals to me that the opportunity is present and the time is now ripe for the promotion of a closer spirit of co-operation by these influential bodies in forwarding to speedy accomplishment the general acceptance of this highly important standardization of public fire-lighting facilities, and to this end let me hope that your association will take the lead in an effort to insure such co-operation, as to your honor, you have taken the lead in approval of the National Standard Hose Couplings as a means whereby the present condition of chaos and in harmony may forever be eliminated in the matter of public fire extinguishing apparatus. Now. gentlemen, having shown you at what little expense these needed changes may be secured, as evidenced by the practical experience indicated, let me again demonstrate to you the practicability of so modifying both a 7 or 8 thread coupling as to produce a perfectly reliable connection when a 7½ thread female swivel is used as an intermediary or accommodator to complete the joint. The technical explanation of this seeming mechanical anomaly, where both a 7 or 8 thread male screw may be made to serviceably fit a female swivel of 7½-thread pitch, will be readily appreciated when we recall (be fart that threads having a V-shaped section possess a peculiar and valuable property of adjustment in relation to the accommodation ot other threads of like shape, out which do not exactly contorm in pitch, and which can yet be made to ht Closely cnough for all practical purposes. The property in question being mat winch relates to the clearance between the threads, which quality is strikingly illustrated in making ordinary nuts, bolts and screw joints, where it is required and utilized to secure a practical ht in the joint without dependence upon absolute accuracy in workmanship. Keeping in mind this peculiar and valuable property of the V-shaped thread in making a comparison of the differences of clearance uetweu and 7 1/2 and 8-thread pitch, it becomes evident that with a thread of 7 turns to the inch, the space or distance between the crests of the threads will be about .1,428 of an inch, while in the case of the thread having 7 1/2 turns to the inch its crests will be .1,333 of an inch apart, and that with 8 turns to the inch the crests will be .1,250 ot an inch apart; hence, in selecting this Standard of 3-1-16mch outside diameter, with 7 1/2 threads to the inch, it will be found that by reducing the diameter of the male end or increasing me diameter of the iemaie ring or swivel by a fraction of an inch, the first crest of the modified male thread will fit into the valley ot the 7 1/2 thread female ring, and that while in the progression of the spiral the following crests will not be exactly coincident with the corresponding valleys, the normal differences of clearance will be only .0,083 of an inch for the 8-thread and .0,095 of an inch tor the 7-thread, or in other words less than one thousandth ot an inch in either instance, while the reduction in diameter will be sufficient to prevent clashing of the inclined surfaces, and thus permit a lit with practically as good contact throughout the joint as if these modified threads were of the same pitch as that of the female ring into which they are entered, as has been shown to be the case through the demonstration just presented. With these facts before you, showing how cheaply and easily complete standardization may he secured, the proposition seems to have been robbed of its mystery and doubt, both as to cost and method of procedure, through the very simplicity of its means and accomplishment. No competent mechanic can offer a valid objection to the Standard as specified, and it is not presented to your attention as a new or novel revelation in mechanic art; it is not patented, nor is it patentable; it is but a simple adoption of common present means toward the elimination of present indefensible conditions, which continually cry aloud for the abolition of the incompetence, ignorance and carelessnesswhich now control the selection and installation of these vital public utilities, the standardization of which is of transcendent importance in the conservation of our created resources, and in the preservation of human life in jeopardy from fire. Manufacturers of hydrant and other fire department apparatus, will hail with gladness the day when any order for such adjuncts could be safely executed by compliance with specifications demanding conformity to the “National Standard.” Therefore, gentlemen, I appeal to you to abandon this comedy of chanee, and enter into the realm of reason, to the end that by unity of action and persistent endeavor to firmly establish the introduction of this much-needed reform in municipal practice in relation to necessary public fire lighting facilities Let us prepare no more graves on the headstones fd which can only be repeated the inscription: Here Lies Inconclusion.”
Capt. H. G. H. Tarr read his paper entitled: “More Than Fifty Years’ Reminiscences of Waterworks Experiences,” explaining before reading the same that he had not himself selected the subject and would have hesitated to refer to his own personal experiences of fifty years except by special request of a great many of his friends in the association.
The paper will be printed in a later edition of FIRE AND WATER ENGINEERING The paper by Mr. I. M. de Yarona entitled. “Organization of the Bureau of Water Supply of the City of New York,” was also read.
Philosophy of Purchasing Supplies
Elihu Cunyngham Church. C.E., read a paper on the above subject, as follows: Your secretary has asked me to speak concerning the purchasing of supplies. Of course much that I have to sav only applies mainly to large cities. About ten months ago I was directed to reorganize the bureau of supplies for the water department of New York City, and in carrying out the work I have attempted to formulate the principles governing the problem. Briefly stated, they are: Get the right materials in correct quantities at the lowest price. This involves much more than the mere filling of such requisitions as are sent in; the lowest price being assumed to have been secured because the bidding was competitive. Such procedure is merely doing a commission house business. When a requisition is filled according to its terms there is no assurance that the goods called for are those best suited for the purpose for which they are to be used, that the quantities called for are reasonable or. finally, that the articles ordered are so specified that standard prices can be obtained. Taking up these matters in detail it is found that many requisitions fail to describe properly the quality of the material needed. There is a tendency to order the highest grade obtainable when the goods are not to be paid for by the man doing the ordering; this is especially trite as men seem to feel that it relieves them irom responsibility for any subsequent failure of the articles when in service. It is an expensive habit, and except in rare cases requisitions should be tilled with articles of the standard commercial grades. Requisitions as received must also be carefully considered to ascertain if the quantities called for are proper; for unless there is an inventory of material on hand one may easily purchase supplies, of which there are plenty in stock.
I have found that new orders are often based on the orders of previous years irrespective of whether materials so ordered were used and without considering that conditions and requirements have changed in the meanwhile. To this end an inventory of the property of the department is being taken and wherever oossible requisitions are filled from stock on hand. The storage and use of all goods should also receive the careful scrutiny of the bureau of supplies, for it is inconsistent to keep accounts of money with great accuracy—and then when the money is invested in stores pay no attention to whether they are used or wasted. Improper storage often results in excessive depreciation. Supplies should be issued in rotation, for when stores are issued in the order in which they are received no old material is left on the back of the shelf to deteriorate and subsequently be thrown out. To carry these ideas into effect storehouses are being fitted up at central points, and a number of specially trained men have been installed as storekeepers. I have also divided all supplies into two classes, consumable and non-consumable. Fuel, oil, waste, and lumber are examples of the first class, whereas tools, implements, rubber hoots, etc., belong in the second group. As soon as possible it will be arranged that none of the non-consumable supplies will be issued till those they are to replace have been turned in. Thus a man cannot procure a new tool till he has returned the old one and shown it was worn out. It is expected that this will safeguard much departmental property and prevent its being used for personal purposes, sold for profit, or so carelessly looked out for that it is either lost or stolen. The problem of obtaining the “right material” brings the question of specifications to the front. Multiplicity of styles and types is a disadvantage, and simplification is greatly to be desired and sought after. To this end investigations and tests are now being made to determine and establish the standards of quality to he met by the various materials purchased.
I have had a list prepared containing the items in current demand and they are being considered, one by one, with regard to their nature, composition, wearing power, keeping qualities, cost and the conditions under which they are to be used in the department. The result desired is to get goods which will give satisfaction when used. One way of purchasing goods would be to take articles, put them in use and try them out. If they gave satisfaction pay for them. If they did not, then reject them and return them to their maker. Even in this case it would be necessary to state what performance would be regarded as meeting requirements. This is not practical. Men want their money upon the delivery of their wares. The purpose of a specification is therefore not alone to set up a standard regarding the kind, size, and excellence of the product desired, but it is to enable the department to say in advance with a fair degree of certainty whether goods will probably render satisfactory service. Nothing should he left to the imagination in the writing of specifications. If a man knows what he wants let him describe it in clear-cut unmistakable language. This takes time but it prevents subsequent misunderstanding accompanied by probable bard feeling and possible litigation. Adjectives and adverbs have no place in a specification. To say that work must be done “properly” or “suitably’” or in a “workmanlike” manner does not really mean anything, because what one man will consider “proper” or “suitable” another holds to be quite the contrary. The phrase that goods must be delivered or work done “to the satisfaction of the engineer or inspector” has caused many a contractor to bid high in self-defense. It contains possibility of unfairness and graft and should not be allowed. It is a noticeable fact that where specifications are indefinite the difference between the lowest and the highest bids is very great, but where the requirements to be met are clear and precise all the prices bid are about the same. Another common fault is to describe in detail the particular methods to be followed in doing a piece of work and then require a warranty as to the result. One should state in detail the way the work is to be done and then abide by the result, or specify what is wanted and then let the contractor use his own judgment and ingenuity concerning the best way to bring it about. In order to obtain low prices a number of things are necessary. First, it is essential to have as much competition as possible. To bring this about lists have been prepared giving the names of the firms making the various classes of goods, and then we notify them when we are in the market. Supply contracts are now so drawn that goods in different groups or divisions, as determined by manufacturing specialization or trade usage, may be bid on separately; for if orders are drawn to contain goods of different classifications the bidders will be “middle men” and “commission merchants,” not the makers of the wares nor the regular dealers in the various subdivisions in which supplies are customarily bought and sold. These “middle men,” besides addding their profits to the manufacturer’s price, thus increasing the cost of the article, are as a rule irresponsible parties with whom it is often unsatisfactory to do business. In order to interest the manufacturers and get them to bid it is necessary to purchase fairly large quantities at a time. To do this the department now buys its supplies every three months and these new quarterly contracts contain sufficient goods to enable the makers to quote wholesale prices. The principal exception is in the purchase of emergency supplies, and these are obtained when needed. The value of placing small orders for hardware and similar supplies as needed from time to time is recognized. This obviates the necessity of keeping large sums of money invested in seldom used materials in order to have a complete stock in the storerooms. Unnecessary or excessive local reserves of stock will be prevented in future by careful records now being taken to show the regular demands for materials at the various storerooms. Another advantage of this is that where goods are bought in quantities all to be delivered to some central storehouse, the proportion of the cost chargeable to delivery becomes very small. As pointed out, an effort has been made to attract manufacturers by writing specifications that can be filled by standard goods, and by making the requirements so clear and definite that there is little or no chance for misunderstanding. Every effort is made to reduce the time which it takes to canvass bids, notify the low bidders and award the contracts; for delay in this respect might cause loss and inconvenience due to possible changes in prices and market conditions. The new methods have so simplified matters that on the average the time required after the delivery of supplies to inspect them, audit the bills and forward the bills to the comptroller for payment has been reduced from many weeks to less than eight days. In fact, it is fully realized that in order to get low prices there must be fair competition between responsible manufacturers who find it to their interest to do business with the department; all of which means that the bureau of supplies must be handled as a clean-cut business proposition. In the bureau of supplies itself conditions and operations are being standardized so that nothing will be done in a hap-hazard manner or left to chance. The work o-f the present aims to secure the economy of the future by so systematizing and simplifying the work that it can be done by the fewest possible number of employers at the least cost.
Following is a discussion on question No. 4. by E. H. Foster, M.E.:
The practice of utilizing the heat produced by the incineration of the city refuse is one which is bound to become more and more nrominent before waterworks engineers of, this country. The general refuse from a city, such as is collected by scavengers, may be divided into three general classes: Garbage, which is the output front kitchens and hotels, consisting chiefly of animal and vegetable matter discarded in the preparation of food. Rubbish, consisting of various discarded articles from the house, such as old turnuure, old carpets, old clothes, newspapers wrappings, bottles, tins, etc. Ashes from fires used in cooking or house heating. Of these three very ditterent classes the garbage contains the most moisture, even as high as 80 per cent, by weight. Rubbish is quite inflammable and high in heat units, and usually with very little moisture content. Ashes, on the other hand, are generally dry and contain from 20 per cent, to 25 per cent, of unutilized carbon. Either of these classes alone is difficult to collect and dispose of, but mixed together they are very easily handled, both as to collection and to disposal by incineration. Within recent years a form of lurnace, known as a destructor, has been developed, chiefly in England and only lately introduced into this country. Good examples have been installed and put in operation in American cities during the past five or six years at New York City, Buffalo, Milwaukee, Montgomery, Ala., Seattle and San Francisco, and in Canada at Westmount, Vancouver, Ottawa, Moose Jaw and Calgary. It has been found that the easiest and most expeditious way of handling the waste from the city is to permit the householders to mix it, as they naturally would if one receptacle be used, and arrange for the collectors to deliver it to a centrally located incinerating plant. When the burning is carried on at a high temperature, never allowing the gases leaving the furnace to fall below a temperature of 1,250 degrees Fahrenheit, the plants are operated entirely free from odors or nuisance of any sort, and experience has proven that no additional fuel other than that found in the material iself is required. When combustion has been completed the waste gases contain an abundance of heat units which may be utilized by installing steam boilers to absorb this heat. An evaporation of from one to two tons of water into steam at a boiler pressure of 150 pounds or more, as desired, may be obtained per ton of mixed retuse consumed. When it is considered that the average city will be able to deliver approximately one ton of mixed refuse per day per thousand population, it is readily seen that a very conconsiderable by-product in the nature of steam to operate a pumping plant is available where the modern system of disposal of refuse by incineration is installed. It is only by utilizing this steam in some such manner that an incinerating plant can be operated up to its full economical basis. Usually there will be just about enough power in a refuse incinerator to operate the waterworks pumping plant, but it will probably always be necessary to provide an auxiliary boiler to be sure of furnishing sufficient steam at times when the refuse collection may be deficient or may be interrupted altogether by holidays or for other causes. This practice, though new in this country, has been in vogue for many years in England, where several very successful installations may be seen. The steam produced by such an incinerating plant might be utilized for driving steam electro generators, and the current utilized for lighting or for power, but the quantity is not usually sufficient to justify a wiring system, unless it be for the special purpose of conducting the power to a more convenient point for its utilization ; for instance, to an outlying pumping station where the pumps may be driven by electric motors. Not only is it entirely practicable to use incinerating plants to drive steam power puming stations, but the economy to a city of thus utilizing its own power is so evident that the practice is bound to gain a very strong foothold in this country, and the officials would do well to give this subject their very careful and interested attention.
Mr. Harrington Emerson then presented his paper on “Efficient Management,” which will be printed in a later edition of this journal.
Further discussion of the Question Box, particularly with reference to matters of fire protection service was now resumed and occupied the remainder of the afternoon, and brought out some very strong expressions on the subject from various members. Strong ground was taken that more adequate returns should be received by waterworks, both municipally and privately owned, for this character of service and that all offenders found guilty of surreptitious use of water from fire protection lines should be summarily dealt with, and the underwriters treated fairly, but with insistence that the rights of the water companies to a fair remuneration must be recognized and maintained.
Thursday Morning Session
President Gwinn in the chair. Mr. Alexander Potter, C.E., read his paper entitled “The Value of a continuing Settling Basm and a Discussion of Economic Pinciples of the Design of such Reinforced Concrete structure,” which was illustrated Dy lantern slides, discussed by Messrs. Wegman, W_____cox Salmon, McKay, Snaw and Owinn. Mr. W. O. Byer, Pittsburgh, Pa., read his paper on “Steam Turbines ana Centrifugal Pumps, which was discussed by Messrs. Chester, Stroniman, Cole, Lyon, Dunham, Fulton, Davis, tsaimon, berry ana Wilcox. Mr. M. E. Morrell, oi Rome, Oa., presented a paper entitled: Mow We Crossea Two Streams with Ward Pipe at Rome, Georgia,” which was discussed by Mr. Kienle. Mr. Cole’s paper, which was presented at a later session, was discussed in part at this time by Messrs. Chester, Potter, and Reimer.
Thursday Evening Session
Prof. Albert F. Ganz presented his paper on “Electrolysis trom Stray Railway Currents,” illustrated by lantern shoes, and which proved to be a comprehensive and able treatment ot the matter, and was much enjoyed by all present. Discussed by Messrs. Wegman, Breidenbach, Reimer, Wilcox and others. Owing to the lateness of the hour further discussion was deterred. Mr. E. H. Breidenbach, of Owensboro, Ry., gave his paper on “Water Softening at OwensDoro, Kentucky,” also illustrated by lantern slides, and of an interesting character. The late hour prevented its discussion.
Friday Morning Session
Mr. Daniel D. Jackson, Department Water Supply, New York city, gave his paper on “Results of Chlorination at Cleveland, Ohio,” which was followed by a paper on “Hypochlorite Sterilization at Kansas City, Missouri,” by Mr. S. Y. High, M.E., of Kansas City. These two papers were discussed by tne following : Messrs, butler, Kennedy, Dr. Leal, Folwell, Leopold, Stover, Bartow, Wilcox, Kienle, Baker, DeBerard and Davis. As an outgrowth of the discussion Mr. Baker proposed the following resolution, which was unanimously adopted, viz.:
Resolved, That the American Waterworks Association urges upon boards of health the importance ot ascertaining and recording the distribution of typhoid fever by causes or modes of infection, to the end that a division of responsibility may be made between water supply, contact cases, general unsanitary conditions, milk and other food supplies liable to contamination, and typhoid carriers; and be it further
Resolved, That boards of health be urged to do their full duty in the elimination of all causes of the spread of typhoid fever, including the use of polluted private wells, or other polluted water, when a pure public water supply is available.
Mr. Edward S. Cole, hydraulic engineer, New York City, presented a paper with accompanying tables on “The Cost of Water, Or Is It Worth While to Stop Waste?” Discussed by Messrs. Shaw, Luscoinbe, Phillips, Reimer and Leopold. On motion of Mr. Reimer a standing committee was established for the purpose ol compiling statistics of comparative consumption of water and to classify the same into various heads, to be termed the committee on water consumption. On motion of Mr. Folwell a standing committee was established to tabulate information concerning water rates and allied subjects, such information to be available to the members of the American Waterworks Association. Mr. F. H. Shaw, civil, hydraulic and sanitary engineer, Lancaster, Pa., read a paper on “Method of Cost of Locating, Measuring and Repairing Leaks in Distribution System at Lancaster, Pennsylvania.” Discussed by Messrs. Cole, Luscombe, Thomas, Phillips, Kienle, Kennedy and Reimer.
Prof. Albert F. Ganz, M.E., professor of electrical engineering, Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, N. J., in discussing the report said: If I may be permitted to say a few words,
I would like to endorse the report of yottr committee on electrolysis, which was presented originally twelve years ago. I also want to emphasize the fact that there was nothing in my paper given last night which is in any way at variance with that report. This association must and should stand strongly for compelling the railway companies to take care of their return current, so as to protect your property front damage, just as you are compelled to protect the public against damage from water leakage.
There is no good reason why railway companies should not install negative as well as positive copper conductors for their current exactly as electric light and power companies do as a matter ot course the world over.
When partial remedies only can be secured let these at least have for their object the minimizing of stray currents on underground structures by minimizing the leakage of currents from the rails, as this leads as a finality to the complete insulation of the railway return current as recommended by your committee on electrolysis.
Mr Dabney H. Maury, C. E., Peoria, Ill., chairman of the committee on revision of constitution. presented the report of that committee as follows:
REPORT OF THE COMMITEE ON REVISION OF CONSTITUTION.
To the members of the American Waterworks Association:—Your committee on revision of constitution would respectfully report progress as follows: Handicapped by the very short time between the receipt of notice of its appointment and the date of this convention, and by the fact that its members reside so far from each other that a committee meeting could not be arranged prior to the convention, your committee feels that it is not yet ready to submit for the approval of the association, through the executive committee, a final draft of the revised constitution which it would recommend. It has, however, prepared a rough draft of a complete revision of the constitution which it hopes to present to the executive committee at an early date, with the idea that after his draft shall have been fully discussed by both committees, and amended as may be deemed advisable, copies of the final draft may be issued to the members for their careful study in advance of the next convention. Your committee would therefore ask that this report be accepted as a progress report only, and that the committee be continued, in order that it may complete its work as herein outlined.
Respectfully submitted, Dabney H. Maury, Theodore A. I.eisen.
On motion of Mr. Bartow the report was adopted and the committee continued, with the understanding that it would consider the recommendations of the committee on revision of constitution as quickly as possible and communicate the same to the membership as far in advance of the next convention as possible. Additional applications for membership were reported by the secretary as recommended by the executive committee, and said applicants were duly elected to membership.
Friday Afternoon Session
Mr. Chester G. Wigley, C.E., Washington, N. J.. read his paper entitled: “To What Degree Must Sewage Be Purified?” The paper was discussed by Messrs. Gwinn, Leopold and Baker. Mr. A. Maclean, superintendent waterworks, Edmonton. Alberta, Canada, presented a paper on the subject of “The Phenomenal Growth of the Edmonton Waterworks,” which was discussed by Messrs, Reimer, Diven. Thompson, Connor, Clenient, Wilcox, Fowles, Breidenbach. Monfort and Davis In the absence of the authors the following paperwere read by title: “Ice Troubles at Buffalo, N. Y.,” by Mr. Henry L., Lyon, deputy water commissioners of Buffalo, N. Y. ; “A Method of Increasing Depth of Large Wooden Settling Tank,” by Mr. A. H. Meyers, superintendent, Columbia, Pa.; “A Reliable Quantitative Test for B. Coli,” by Shepperd T. Powell, resident chemist, Baltimore County Water & Electric Co., Baltimore, Md.; “Wood Stave Water Conduit at At lantic City, New Jersey,” by Mr, L. Van Gilder, engineering superintendent, Atlantic City, N. J. On motion the same were ordered printed in the proceedings. Discussion of the Question Box was now resumed, participated in by Messrs. Young, Maclean, Breidenbach, I Diven, Luscombe, Connor, Phillips, Wilcox, Gwinn, Bartow, Leisen, Reimer, Shaw, Davis, Worrell, Clement, Bowen, Caulfield and Abbott. It was suggested that a special resolution of thanks be adopted to retiring President Milne, but Mr. Henderson stated that the executive committee had already taken such action. On motion the convention now adjourned.
The matter of the advisability of taking steps to bring about an affiliation of the various local waterworks associations throughout the country with the American Waterworks Association under some mutually satisfactory arrangement that would tend to the greater usefulness of all of the bodies concerned was quite fully discussed by Messrs. Reimer, Bartow, Leopold, Diven, Gwinn, Wilcox, Baker, Leiseu and others, Mr. Leisen as the only represenative of the committee on revision of constitution expressed the willingness of that committee to co-operate in the movement, and Mr. Bartow presented a resolution to the effect that negotiations be opened by the executive committee with the various local associations, which however was withdrawn and a substitute motion proposed by Mr. Baker was adopted, recommending that local sections of the American Waterworks Association be formed, and that the executive committee and the committee on revision of constitution be requested to do everything in their power to facilitate such result. The following involution of thanks was proposed by Messrs. Maury, Henderson and Reimer, and adopted hy a rising vote, viz.:
Whereas, During the past week this association has been the recipient of delightful entertainment, charming hospitality and unvarying courtesy from the Louisville Water Company, the ladies’ reception committee the local committee and the local press, now therefore
Be it resolved, That this association on behalf of its members and guests, desires to express its grateful appreciation for all of the foregoing, and record upon its minutes as the sentiment of its members the fact that, thanks to the kindly efforts of the bodies mentioned, the convention in Louisville, will always be remembered as one of the most enjoyable and delightful in the history of the association.
Mr. William R. Young, registrar waterworks, Minneapolis, Minn., asked for light on the question of distribution and sizes of fire hydrants to produce best practical results in city fire protection, which subject was discussed hy Messrs. Diven, Reimer, Shaw, Clement, and the general conclusion reached that it was better to have a larger number of hydrants placed nearer together and on both sides of the street of the average size in use rather than unusually large sizes placed at greater distances apart. Mr. Bartow broached the matter of the advisability of establishing national special sections and moved that the same be referred jointly to the executive committee and the committee on revision of the constitution. The motion was seconded hy Mr. Baker and carried. Mr. Bartow suggested that authors presenting program papers hereafter be requested to confine the same within limits of not exceeding fifteen minutes in delivery, except when an extension of time is allowed by the publication committee, and the time allowed indicated on the program; also that those participating in discussions be entitled to five minutes, which may be extended three minutes additional by unanimous consent, and moved that this matter be referred to the executive committee with power to act.