LATTA’S HYDRAULIC TUNNELING APPARATUS.
G. T. Latta, superintendent of the water works of Ludlow. Ky., has invented and patented an hydraulic tunneling apparatus. by means of which service pipes may be put in without trenching, and for which no machine or tools need be bought. The apparatus affords a rapid practical method of boring through loam sand, sandy loam, yellow, or blue clay to a distance of 100 feet—the cutter boring the hole, and the water washing away the chips, for doing which all the necessary tools are shown in the accompanying fig. 1. There is an iron standpipe about eighteen inches high, which is screwed into the side opening of a tee, is capped at the upper end, and serves to oscillate the tunneling pipe and also as a shaft for the spool. The pieces of wrought iron pipe may be about three feet long. The serrated cutters are mere pipe fittings, having notches filed in the end. The rope in the block and tackle arrangements is wound up on the smaller end of the wooden spool when the resistance is great; but on the larger end, when the resistance is less. The rope and tackle may be dispensed with altogether in sand, loam, or sandy loam, where the resistance is so slight as to admit of the operator forcing the pipe into the earth without any purchase. Figure 2 shows a vertical cross section of a [stteet having a paved roadway in which a tunnel is bored for the service pipe by digging two holes only—one in the street exposing the main; the other in the sidewalk next to the curb. The main is tapped as is usual—any kind of corporation feirule being inserted, to which a valve or a compressibn hose bib is temporarily coupled. Figure 3 illustrates the Sheridan curb cock, with ground joint tail pieces ac both ends, and capable of being disconnected while the service pipe is being thrust through the tunnel, which, in that case, need be large enough only to clear the wiped joint on the tailpiece. This improved cock can be be taken out. repaired, and put back again (or a new one may be put in instead of the one taken out) without shutting off the main or the ferrule. It will be found easy to bore a hole large enough for a service in one hour and one-half, where the soil is favorable. The higher the water pressure, the more rapid will be the work. If the pressure is very low, it will be found advantageous to crowd it up by means of a small handpower force pump. It is easy to tunnel through loam and kindred soils. Blue clay needs a cutter with long, rank teeih (as shown in fig. 1.) Fine gravel can be tunneled through by using the water very freely; it is difficult to get through coarse gravel ; to work through rock is an impossibility. The nature of the soil can be determined very quickly by coupling a fifty-foot length of hose to a neighboring hydrant and boring a series of three-quarterinch holes vertically into the earth on the sidewalk to a depth greater than the cover over the main—using the apparatus in fig. 1, except the block and tackle, which are not needed. If the holes can be bored vertically, they can also be bored horizontally. The longest service that Mr. Latta has had occasion to put in is fifty-seven feet, and 114 the length of the longest tunnel—in which cise the tunneling pipe pipe was left in the tunnel as the service pipe. No expensive machine or tools are needed. The spool may be turned from a wagon hub stock; the rope and pulleys purchased at any hardware store; and all the other appliances may be found in any water works tool room.
The fifteenth anniversary of the arrival of the team of the Read Steamer Company, of Troy, N. Y., will be celebrated on August 30. With the exception of a few days last year,when one of the horses was turned out for a few days, the team has been in constant service, and has never been separated.