WATER WORKS PRACTICE
Street and Water Commissioner S. D. Keller, of Bristol, Va., has provided new self-closing spigots to consumers to save the water supply of the city. The new spigots are arranged so that the water flow is closed the minute they are released by the hand. They are simple in construction and are operated automatically by a spring.
The Ambridge Water Commission, of Beaver, Pa., at the spring quarterly water meter reading, takes the annual town census. The census is taken for two reasons: One is merely for the knowledge of the population and growth of the town. The other is to reduce the business of furnishing water to a. more exact science and to better plan for future development of the town. For example the commission wants to know the amount of water required for each 1,000 population, whether or not this varies from year to year and if so why and how much.
The Water Department at Fitchburg, Mass., provides iced water for the public fountains in that city during the hot summer months. The water is iced by means of a large concrete ice box below the fountain, with coils of pipe of several sizes in it, so as to give storage for considerable water. The fountains cost about $175 each, and have been very satisfactory. At first only two were installed. Later the city council ordered the installation of seven more. With nine fountains to ice, the department concluded to cut the ice and store it themselves, instead of purchasing it, and they put up a house for the purpose. The ice was cut on one of the reservoirs, and the fountains were filled during the hot weather by the department team without interfering with the usual work of the department.
To the Editor: In your issue of January 31, under caption of “Water Works Practice,” you mention that a water works plant has been successful in using a jack to force service pipes under car tracks, pavements, etc. Can you publish a detailed description of this jack? I think such an appliance could frequently be used to good advantage by water works superintendents. Respectfully yours, F. F. M.
The device described was a home-made affair and complete details are not at hand. A similar jack is, however, shown below. It, too, is intended to lessen the amount of ditch digging necessary to lay water pipes. It consists of a set of clamps and levers mounted on a metal framework which can be staked securely to the ground. The pipe is inserted between the clamps and, by operating a handle back and forth, it is forced into the ground a few inches at each stroke. It is claimed that a pipe can be driven 50 or 100 feet in this way. Thus it can be pushed through the earth from a cellar to a main in a street, or beneath car tracks, pavement, etc. The machine can be employed also to draw out old or damaged pipe. This device, too, is a home-built affair.