ERIE, PA., WATER WORKS
IN connection with the laying of the intake a brief description of the manner of joining the pipes and placing them in position will not be uninteresting. Close to the water’s edge were placed several timbers, a number of them lying level on the ground, so placed that they would give a uniform support to the six joints of pipe that were to be united into one section; the other timbers being so inclined as to form a way for the launching of the section. On the inner portion of the plankless platform was stretched a wire cable, for the purpose of carrying the molten lead which was used in uniting the pipes. After six pieces of pipe hud been rolled on to this platform the spigot-ends were inserted into the bell-ends of their opposites, when the ordinary lead joint was made, and, after having been thoroughly caulked, these six pieces formed a section that was as rigid as though it were a single casting. The sections averaged 72 1012 feet in length and averaged in weight 31 1-2 tons. The spigot-ends of each section having been slightly tapered in a lathe at the foundry where they were cast, were inserted into the bell-end of the preceding section and a lead joint made, after which the spigot-end was withdrawn, leaving the lead gasket or packing in the bell. After both ends of the section had been dosed, it was launched, buoyed by casks and floated to a position directly above its intended bed under the water of the bay; then by removing the cap from the spigot-end enough of the casks were detached to permit the section to sink sic wly. The spigot-end of one section was then drawn into the bell end of the preceding section by threaded rods or drawbolts with sufficient force to compress the lead gasket. The final formation of the joint was jierformed by a diver under water, Frequent tests of the intake were made to know whether or not the joints were tight. This was done by lowering the water in the intake at the manhole, which is situated near the 60-inch valve.
If the water rore. a leak was indicated, while the time required for it to return to its normal elevation showed whether the leak were large or small. This section of Intake No. 2 makes the longest line of submerged 60-inch cast iron pipe in the world, which, with a standpipe whose elevation of 259 65 feet above the zero level of the bay is the highest any where, causes the Erie water works to have some things of which no other water works can boast. The standpipe connected with these water works was built in 1868; the metal part was constructed and put in place by the Erie City Iron Works of that city. Its dimensions are 5 feet interior diameter, and between it and the inside of the brick work is a space of 2 feet 3 inches, in which is a spiral staircase, from bottom to top of the masonry work. The masonry at base is five feet 3 inches thick; it is of stone, a regular octagon in shape and is 20 feet high. The next fifty feet is of brick, also octagon shape, and then comes a belt of stone from which upwards the brick work is circular—all the brick work has been plastered and this jiainted. The brick work on the top of the belt of stone is 36 inches thick, gradually tapering towards the top. The metal at the base is 7-16 inch thick.
The property administered by the water commissioners is in first-class condition. liesides that, at the close of business on December 31, 1895, they did not owe a dollar and had in addition a balance in the hands of the treasurer of $18,887. Their receipts for 1895 were as follows: Assessed, $91,937.83; meter, $23,749.47; special, $257.31; building, $983.02; from plumbing, $1,878.12, making total cash for the year, $137,692.75, and showing an increase of $5,105.69 as follows: Assessed, $4,491.15; meter, $409.78; special, $24.76; building, $180. The assessed accounts are based on the stores, offices, shops, dwellings, fixtures, etc., on property where water is introduced, which are determined annually by a thorough in. spection of the same. A system which has worked satisfactorily, has been inaugurated in Erie, of furnishing all propertyowners using city water with a tabulated statement of the amount each piece of property was assessed for. Meter accounts are based on the quarterly consumption of water by meter measurement, at the uniform rate of six cents per 1,000 gallons, provided that the consumption does not fall below the minimum charge for the size of meter used—each meter being read every thirty days. Up to December 31, 1895, the consumption of water by meter for the last quarter of the year was greater than ever before in the histoty of the water works. And here it may be noticed that, according to a table drawn up by Secretary William Ilimrod, of the water department of Erie, that city boasts 142 meters belonging to the corporation in use by its citizens—Erie standing thirty-second in water works rank. The meter rates are as follows: six cents for each 1,000 gallons by meter measurement, provided the minimum receipts per quarter shall be for a 3-4-inch or less, $3.75; 1inch $4.50; 1 1-2-inch $6.25; 2-inch $10; 3-inch $18.75; 4inch, $38.75. The source of the supply is Take Erie; the system, pumping to the reservoir. The capacity of the reservoir is 35,000,000, the daily cafiacity of the pumping engines up to that date being 21,000,000 gallons. Of hydrants, there were set in 1895, 20 Matthews, 1 Pittsburgh, 1 Bay State, 1 (1 1-2-inch) Jarecki, making the total number in use on December 1895, 491. In 1895 there were set 46 stop-valves as follows: I 2-inch, 14 4-inch, 31 6-inch, 2 4 inch being removed, and one private valve placed—all Eddy. There was laid of main pipe 7 1-inch, 307.6 feet; 1 1-2-inch, 11.6 feet; 2inch, 529.8 feet; 4 3.358, 11 feet; 6 14.469 feet—a total of 18,677 feet, or 3 miles, 2,164 feet, making with some private piping, amounting to 424 feet, and 89 miles, 199 feet already laid,a grand total of 92 miles, 2.787 feet. Of connections there are in ail 36 miles, 5,051 3-12 feet. Large connections to manufacturing plants have been given for fire protection and every facility in this line extended to the industries of the city.
The cuts this week show pipe in the yard at harbor; the io-inch cast iron pipe (lying in dock ready for use); pipes joined, ready for launching, method of drawing together and securing the slip-joint, a profile, illustrating the line of the intake pipe, and a portrait of Mr. William Himrod, secretarytreasurer of the board of commissioners.