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Vre*s Dictionary of Arts, Manufactures, an-l Mint's. New Edition.' Edited by 1{. IlrsT, F.R.S., &c. Part II., December, 1859. London: Longman and Co. We observe now what we did not notice when the first part of the work was recently before us, viz., that this new editionis to be published in monthly parts. In a twelvemonth's time, therefore, the re-issue will bo completed. This is a most satisfactory arrangement.

This part shows that the great improvements noticed in the first were not put forward as mere beguUenjcnts to purchasers. The labour and expense bestowed npon the new edition are as manifest here as they were in it, the SS-lth page of the present part carrying us only to the article' Borax, which appeared on the 23 tth page of the edition of'53. We have new articles on Artillery (91 pases), the Atomic Theory (3 p.), Borwood <1 p.), Hells (1 p.), Benzole (l.J p.), Boghead coal (2 p.), the commencement of an elaborate one on Boring, and some scores of shorter ones. At the game time many of the old articles are extended—• that on Barley from 10 lines to 11 pages,on Bismuth from 2 to 81 pages, on Bleaching from 171 to 331 pages, on the lilowpipe from 0 lines to 3 pages, on Boracic Acid from 1 to 2 pages, on Borax from 2 to 3, and so forth. The article on Bleaching deserves particular notice, as it contains n large mass of new and valuable matter, and is illustrated by a truly beautiful display of engravings on wood. We recommend readers—atl who can afford five shillings a month for the purpose —to put themselves in possession of the parts of thhi edition of Dr. lire's unexampled work without tlelay.

Stories of Inventors an-l Discoverers in Science ami the Useful Arts. A book for Old and Younj. By Jon* Turns, F.S.A., Author of "Cariosities of London,'* "Things not Generally Known," Ac. With Illustrations. London: Kent and Co. (late Bwgue), Fleet-street. 1859. Mk. Turns has here contrived to pnt forward 350 pages on inventors and discoverers without once acknowledging (so far as we can observe) that he is at all indebted to the Mechanics' Maoazixe for any of his facts or statements. This will seem a curious circumstance to those who know how prominent a place this Magazine has held for thirty sir years past in connection with inventions and discoveries in " science and the u-eful arts;" and we may, without vanity, say that he might have avoided sonio errors had he given greater heed to what has been published here. But having intimated this we hasten to express our sense of the great value of the volume before lis. It is, indeed, "a book for old and young," and such a hook as no other compiler known to us could be expected to proiluce. Mr. Tinilis docs not bestow his labour grudgingly upon those volumes of his which are appearing every few months. They are well thought over, and worked at energetically. This volume is one which no man in England, be he ever so cultivated, ne^l be ashamed to peruse, or could peruse without deriving much instruction from it.

The Gardeners' Year Book, Almanack, and Directory, 1860. By Robert Hoc;o. London: Cottage Gardener Office, 182 Fleet-street, E.C. Mb. Hogg—who is a Vice-President of the British Pomological Society, author of "British Pomology," "The Vegetable Kingdom and its Products," and co-editor of the Cottage Gardener— lias here started an exceedingly useful and cheap annual. The number for 18(50 contains 150 pages of well-selected matter, and is so admirably edited that the success of the author's undertaking will he assured by it.

CcisselVs Illustrated Almanack for-\RG0. London: Cassell, Petter, and Galpin, La Belle Sauvage Yard.

This almanack abounds in exceedingly well

eelected matter, is lavishly illustrated, and is

unexampled for cheapness.

On the Comparative value of Certain 9 tits for rendering Fabrics Non-injlatnmable. By Fukd. Velissus, F.C.S., and Alpiioss Oppexueis*, Ph. !)., A.C.S. London: Trabner and Co., GU Paternosterrow. 1859. Trns pamphlet forms the substance of a paper read before the British Association at the Aberdeen meeting in September last.- An article, which, we recently* published on uninflammable fabrics (which was copied into most English newspapers, and translated, into several foreign journals), and a letter from the authors which appeared in our "Weekly Gossip" a week or two since, render further description of the pamphlet unnecessary.

Our Military Engineer*; being an Inotiiry into the Present State of Kjjirirucg of the Corps of Royal Engineers. London: Judd and Glass, Ssa Now Bridge-street,- ami Gray's-Inn-road. TrtE conclusion at which the author of this anonymous pamphlet arrives, after giving the matter the fullest attention, is that the separation of the Civil and Military duties of the officers of the corps of Royal Engineers is unavoidable, if we wish to preserve the corps. They canr.ot exist as they are at present. "They may contrive to bungle over their civil duties with ths assistance of the civilians attached to the department, but having no one to perform the military duty for them, their utter worthlessness as a professional corps will be fully exposed. How they contrived to hush up their deficiencies in the Crimea cannot be imagined, unless it is attributed to the unity which prevails among thorn; for there is no body of men who adhere so well to each other in concealing their deficiencies from the authorities and the public as the officers of the corps of Royal Engineers."

Having in view the difficulty which might be supposed to arise in the separation of the civil and military duties of the corps of Royal Engineers, the author believes that all difficulties'may be got over by conlining the corps to the practice of military duties—which would include tho construction of works of fortification, the practice of military bridges, .pontooning, siege operations, light infantry manoeuvres, &c. being under the control of the Commander-in-Chief. The exclusively civil duties which they are now supposed to perforin, and consisting of the designing, executing, and repairing barrack buildings, storehouses, the management of War Office lands, i&c., should be handed over to a civil corps analogous to the Military Store Department, and subject to the Sccretary-at-War. This corps would be available in time of war as a substitute for the late Army Works Corps, and could be made to perforin the professional duties required in connection with Quarter Master- General's Department, thereby permitting the employment of tho corps of Royal Engineers solely in tho military operations of a siege. Tho Civil Corps is to be composed of men who, previous to their appointment, luivo received a practical training in architecture, civil engineering, building, &c.

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HANCnESTEK"LITERABY AJTD PHlIOSOTniCAX

SOCIETY. Ordinary Meeting, Nov. 15th, 1859. Mr. J. C. Dyer, Vice-President, in the Chair. Mr. John Atkinson made a communication respecting a curiously-shaped fossil, found about a month ago in the Upper New Red Sandstone in a quarry near Runcorn. This fossil had been described m tho Athenaum of the 2Mb of October last by Mr. Henry Wilson, Surgeon, Runcorn, who pointed out its striking resemblance to the mullion and tracery of part of au ancient gothic window, not merely in size and general outline, but in tho moulding upon it, as if of tooling by the hand of some primitive mason. On the 5th instant the Athenaum contained two letters on the same subject. Neither of the writers had seen the fossil. Opinions being divided, Mr. Atkinson visited the Runcorn Hill Quarry, oxamined the fossil itself, and found it to be a mass of fine-grained sandstone veins. These had been deposited in thin horizontal lainiutc and moulded in a system of cracks formed by flesiccation and subsequent modification— probably by the action of water—in the bed of marl (here eight inches thick) so celebrated as being that on which the last of the Labyrinthodon order of animals have left their footprints in snch vast abundance at Stonrton, Runcorn, Lymm, and various other localities. Professor Roscoe communicated a paper by W. S. Jovons, Esq., late Assayer in the Sydney Branch of the Royal Mint, entitled, "Observations on the Gold Districts of Australia." At the close of the paper the author considers the important question of the probable future yield of gold to be expected from Australia. He bolieves that no more very largo or rich fields of alluvial gold will be discovered in Victoria, but that the present "gold-drift" has by no means been worked out; s > that when capital and moro complete mechanical appliances arc brought tu> bear npon the ground which the first gold-digger has relinquished as worthless, a constant mid remunerative supply of gold can bo relied on. It ii otherwise, the author bolieves, with the true gold mines, those in which the auriferous quartz reef is worked. Here tho supply is, as for as we know, unlimited—the assertion that quartz reefs became poorer in gold as t'ney decend being as yet quite unproved, so that when the duo combination of science and capital has been brought to bear upon the subject, there seems to be no reason why tho auriferous quartz reef should not be followed as far as any other metal-bearing vein, as in the Cornish tin mines or in the silver mines of Mexico and Peru. Hence the author concludes that the supply of gold from Australia will probably continue to be large and regular.

Mathematical and Physical Section, Nov. 10th, 1859. Mr. T. Heelis read n paper •' On Storms, with some attempt to ascertain their tracks in the neighbourhood of the British Islands, and their analogy to other Cosmieal Phenomena."

MEETINGS FOItTilE ENSUING WEEK.

Mo.N.—Zomf-jrt Inst., "On the radiation and absorption of heat," by Professor J. Tyndall, l-'.R.S., at 7 p.m.

Tubs.Nat. Civil Engineers, Continued discussion on Mr. Grantham's paper "On Arterial Drainage and Outfalls." At half-past nine the visitors will adjourn to the library, when candidates wilt bo balloted for.

Wed.Itoyal hut., "On the Physical Historv, Structure, and Materials of the Earth," by E.'W. bruylcy, Esq., K.R.S., at 7 p.m. Society of Arts, "On the forces used in Ajrricnlture," bv Mr. J. C. Morton, at H p.m.

Tnx\—Rot/al Society, I. •' On the Analytical Theory of the Attraction of Solids bounded by the surfaces of a class including the Ellipsoid," by Prof. Doukiu; II. Supplement to u paper on the Thermodynamic Theory or Steam Knirines with dry saturated steam, and its application to practise," hy Prof, ltankitu-; III., " On the effects produced in Human Blood bv Sherry Wine," by l>r. Addison; IV.'" Supplement to a paper on tho influence of White Litfht of the different col-uired rays, and of darkness on the development, growth, and nutrition of animals," bv Mr. II. Dnbell, at K. 30 p.m.

FulD.—London Intt., "On certain principles of vegetable and animal chemistry," by i\ A, Molonc, Esq., F.C.S., at 7 p.m.

EXPERIMENTS ON THE STRENGTH OF

CAST IRON GIRDERS. By J. O. Lykdit M.I.C.E.? F.O.8. The following paper was read at the Manchester Literary and Philosophical Society, Nov. 1, 1859. The beams experimented on were eighty-nine in number, and were cast by Mr. Mabon, at the Ardwick Iron Works, Manchester, from iron of the following descriptions:—

One charge of the cupola consisted of

12 cwt. Goldendale, Staffordshire.

12 " Lane End.

12 " Ormesby, Yorkshire.

12 " Blair, Scotch.

12 " Calder, „

All No. 3 hot blast iron. 12 " scrap.

The beams were cast on their sides, and were a very good sample of workmanship.

The section of each beam was of the form recommended by Professor Hodgkinson, and npon which his formula; were based ; the total depth of the beam in the centre was 24} inches, and at the ends 20 inches; the bottom flange was 15 inches wide, and 2J inches thick; the vertical part of the beam was 14 inch thick; and the top flange was 4} inches wide, and 1^ inch thick; the total length of the beam was 34 feet 6 inches, and the distance between the supports was 30 feet 9 inches; the weight of the beam was 3 tons 8 cwt. 1 qr.

One of the beams was tested np to the breaking weight with the following results :— With a load in the centre of—

Tons. Girt. Inch.

31 8 the deflection was -87.
42 16 „ 2 00.

46 12 „ 2-25.

60 8 „ 2-56.

54 4 „ 2-70.

58 0 the beam broke,

the ends springing back from each other 2 feet 3 inches, the fracture indicating a good sound casting.

There was no permanent set observable in any of the experiments, until the breaking weight was applied, the beam being allowed to recover itself on the removal of the load in each case.

Each of the remaining beams was tested with a load of 20 tons in the centre, the deflection varying from fths to Jtlis of an inch.

The calculations for the strength were based on the following formula;, given by Professor Hodgkinson in his " Experimental Researches on the Strength and Properties of Cast Iron:"— First formula, art. 146: Let W=the breaking weight in tons placed on

the centre of the beam, o = the area of the bottom flange in inches, d=the total depth of the beam in inches, / .= tlu- length between the supports in feet, 2166 a d

then l!' In this case

I

k

o=36, d=24-25, . 1=30-75,

which gives 60'09 tons as the breaking weight of the beam.

The second formula, art. 147, takes into account the thickness of the vertical part of the beam, and is as follows:—

Let II' the breaking weight in tons placed on

the centre of the beam, / = the length between the supports in feet, /•ill. breadth of the bottom flange in inches, ''-" (!]•• thickness of the vertical part in inches, • •"tlu- whole depth in inches, .•/'the depth from the top of the beam to the upper side of the bottom flange in inches,

then JT= ^ (bffi-p

In this case 7=3075,

4=15,

4' = 1-6,

d = 24-25,

d' = 22-03.

which' gives 62-19 tons as the breaking weight of the beam.

The actual breaking weight being 58 tons, it would appear that the constant co-efficient assumed is in each instance too high for the quality of iron of which these beams were cast. This result appears to have been anticipated by Professor Hodgkinson in the case of large beams; and in ene of his experiments, art. 147, on a beam cast for Messrs. Marshall and Co., of Leeds, he gives •625 as the co-efficient, which agrees with the result of this experiment.

Applying this co-efficient to'Professor Hodgkinson's formula), they will be as follows:—

First formula, TT=2'05'"i Second formula, W='— /ids—(4—4')d'3\

The first of these would give 58-2 tons, and the second 58 31 tons, as the breaking weight; either of which calculations would be sufficiently correct for any practical purpose.

ON

THE ANGLE OP DOCK GATES AND THB ROOF OF THE BEE'S CELL. By Chahlu M. Whj.ich, Actuary University Life Assurance Society.*

The proper angle at which dock gates should be placed, so that the timber employed should yield the most favourable result, has often been discussed by mathematicians, and determined as a problem of maxima and minima. The angle has been found to be 109° 28' 16"

A patient investigation of the properties of the cube has enabled me to succeed in dividing it into several geometrical solids, with which many definite and regular geometrical bodies may be constructed. The dodecahedron with 12 rhomboidal faces is composed of 2 cubes, 6 octohedrons, or 4 oblique rhomboidal cubes. The obtuse angle on its face measures 109° 28' 16", being the same as that adopted by mathematicians for the angle of dock gates; and by Maclanren in the beginning of the last century as the best for the angle of the roof of the bee's cell It will be readily seen by the models submitted with this paper, that by elongating the dodecahedron, it becomes the precise form of the bee's eel], with angles measuring 109° 28' 16".

I have succeeded in dividing or parting the cube in two different ways. 1st. By lines from the centre to the 8 solid angles of the cube, which will give 6 four-sided pyramids. 2nd. By lines from one of the upper angles of the cube, drawn diagonally to the 3 opposite angles, dividing the cube into 3 equal and uniform solids. Each of these solids being halved forms a left and a righthanded solid. These 6 solids, though equal in solidity, differ so far in shape, as 3 are left-handed and 3 right-handed, in the same way as the hands of the human body.

Each of the six bodies obtained by the second mode of partition may be divided into two of equal solidity and of similar shape. Two of these bodies, each being one-twelfth of the cube, may be so united as to produce the pyramid obtained by the first mode of partition. Six of these bodies, each being one-twelfth part of a cube, may be so arranged as to form the oblique rhomboidal cube.

It may also be observed that the pyramid, or one-sixth of the cube obtained by the first mode of partition, may be divided into four bodies, each of which is one-third of a cube containing oneeighth of the mass of the cube from which it was derived. So that, in fact, we may go on dividing and reproducing bodies of a similar shape, and still retaining the diagonal lines of the cube. How far this subdivision may be carried in nature, or how much farther than our powers of vision go, I v. i 11 not at present venture an opinion. We can imagine the commencing atoms may be infinitely small, when we remember the wonders revealed by the microscope.

Litt of Models accompanying 3lr. Willich'i paper.

No. 1. Modelof bee'seell, composed of sovenrhom

boidal cubes. By taking away 3 of these cubes,

• Read before the British Association >t Aberdeen, September 20, 180'J.

the dodecahedron with rhomboidal faces is left, u composed with 4 rhomboidal cubes. The wild content of the dodecahedron is equal to two Cuba, whose side is equal to the shortest of the diagonal lines of the rhomboidal face.

No. 2. The rhomboidal dodecahedron u composed with six octohedrons. N.B. The cubic octohedron with which the dodecahedron is composed, is not the regular platonic body with eight faces, which arc equilateral triangles, and which may be obtained by a partition of the tetrahedron; but this cubic octohedron has each face with two angles of 54° 44' 08", and one of 70' 31' «", being, in fact, one-half the rhombus *>n the face of the dodecahedron. This octohedron it composed of two of the six pyramid! into • which a cube may be divided, as seen by the

model.

No. 3. Cube marked with lines to show its partition into six bodies.

No. 4. Cube built up with the six bodies. No. 5. Two of No. 4. united to form one-thin! of a cube.

No. 6. One of these bodies of which No. 4 cube is composed, being one-sixth of a cube divided into two, A and B, each being one-half a pyrtmid or one-twelfth of a cube.

No. 7. A rhomboidal cube, composed of lix halfpyramids. Seven of these rhomboidal cubes form the bee's cell (see No. 1), and four form the dodecahedron.

No. 8. Pyramid, being one-sixth of a cube or one-half of the cubic octohedron. No. 9. Pyramid, divided into fonr bodies. N.B. No. 8 and 9 together form the cubic

octohedron.

No. 10. One-quarter of a pyramid divided and re-united so as to form one-third of a cube, which is one-eighth of the solidity of the cube from which the pyramid was derived.

N.B. This body is of the same form as No. 5; but only one-eighth of the solidity. No. 10 may also be produced at once by dividing the pyramid into four of these bodies, by quartering across instead of diagonally; w that the one-eighth part of the pyramid unites either way to form the quarter of the pyramid, cut diagonally or across. No. II. To show that by the union of the halfpyramids a prism may be formed.

THE INVENTION OF THE HOT-BLAST USED IN IRON-MAKING.* •

The following history of the invention of the hot-blast used in iron-making was recently presented to the Institution of Mechanical Engineers in a speech by Mr. Neilson, the inventor ol the hot-blast system:—

Six or seven years before he brought out the plan, he had read a paper before the Glasgow Philosophical Society on the best mode of taking out the moisture from the atmospheric air in summer time, previous to its entrance into the furnace through the tuyeres; for it was found that the make of iron was much impaired in summer weather both in quality and quantity, and ha had become satisfied that the cause lay in the greater proportion of moisture contained in the air at that season. His first idea was to ps» the air through two long tunnels containing olcined lime, so as to dry it thoroughly on its way to the blast cylinder of the blowing engine; bat this plan was not put to trial. About that tinw his advice was asked by a friend, Mr. Janiei Ewing, of the Muirkirk Iron Works, in regard to a blast furnace situated at a distance of hatf-ainile from the blowing engine, which did not obtain a sufficient supply of blast at that distance, and consequently did not make Bo much iron ai two similar furnaces situated close by the same engine; and it then occurred to him that line* air increases in volume according to its tempere

* The publication of this article Uas been unavoidib!.' delayed for several weeks.

tnre, if it were passed through a red-hot vessel before entering tlie distant furnace, its volume woulil be increased, and it might be enabled to do more duty in the distant furnace. "Being at that time engaged in the (ilasgow pas works he miuli? an experiment at once on the cfl'ect produced upon the illuminating power of gas l>y a supply of heated air brought up by a tube close to the gas burner; and found that by this means the combustion of the pas was rendered more perfect and intense, so that the illuminating power of the particles of carbon in the gas was greatly ausmcnted. He then tried a similar experiment with a common smith's fire, by blowing the fire with heated nir; the effect was that the fire was rendered most brilliant, with an intense decree of heat, while another fire blown with cold air showed only the brightness ordinarily seen with a high heat. Having obtained such marked results in tlicso small experiments it then occurred to him that a similar increase in intensity of combustion and temperature produced would attend the application of the same plan on a large scale to the blast furnace; but his great difficulty in further developing the idea was that be was only a gas maker, and could not persuade ironmasters to allow him to make the necessary experiments with blast furnaces at work. At that time there was groat need of improvement in the working of blast furnaces, for many furnaces were at a stand for want of bla-st, beingunablctomaiiitair.theneccssary heat for smelting the iron; and unless as much as 60 per ton could be obtained for th» iron noprofit was realised, on account of the heavy expenses attending the furnaces. A strong prejudice was foil against any meddling with the furnace, and a kind of superstitious dread of any change prorailed, from the great ignorance of furnace managers with respect to the real action going on iu the furnace, and the causes of the fluctuations that occurred; when a furnace was making No. 1 iron no one would be allowed to touch it, for fear that if any change took place it might be many weeks before the furnace got round again from white iron. He at length succeeded, however, in inducing Mr. Charles Macintosh of Glasgow and Mr. Coliu Dnnlop of the Clyde Iron Works to allow him an opportunity of trying the application of heated air for blowing a furnace; and though the temperature of the air was raised but little, not more than about 50° Fahrenheit, he was glad to l>e allowed to make a trial even with so small an amount of heat. This first imperfect trial of hot blast, however, with arise of temperature of only 00°, showed a marked difference in the scoria from the furnace, causing it to be less Mack, or containing less iron; and he was therefore anxious to try the plan on a more extensive scale, in order to satisfy himself a.s to the change in the make of iron, and to establish the correctness of the principle. He was still retarded by tlie strong objections of ironmasters to any alterations in connexion with the furnaces, which prevented him from making the necessary experiments for ascertaining tlie best way of carrying out the plan: in one instance where he had so far succeeded as to be allowed to heat the blast main, he a"ke<l permission to introduce deflecting plates in the main, or to put a bend in the pipe, so as to bring the blast more closely against the heated •ides of the pipe, and also increase the area of heating surface, in order to raise the temperature to a higher point; but this waj refused, and it Was said that if even a bend were put in the pipe the furnace would stop working. These prejudices proved a serious difficulty, and it was two or three yean before he was allowed to put a bend in the blast main ; but after many years of perseverance at the subject he was at length enabled to work out the plan into a definite shape at the Clyde Irr>n Works, as had been so completely and correctly describe4 in the paper that had been read. The invention of the hot blast consisted solely in tlie principle of heating the blast between the eiisr'me and the furnace, and was not associated w-ith any particular construction of the intermediate heating apparatus; this was the cause of the success that bad attended the invention, aiid

in this respect the case had much similarity to that of his countryman James Watt, who, in connection with the steam engine, invented the plan of condensing tlie steam in a separate vessel, and was successful in maintaining his invention by »;>t limiting it to any particular construction of con-, denser. He was glad of this opportunity of acknowledging how firmly tlie English ironmasters stood by him in the attempts made in the early time of the use of hot blast to deprive him of the benefits of his invention; and to them he was indebted for the successful issue of fchc severe contest he had then to go through.

HELP FOI! SEAMEN.

It being pretty generally known that we include very many naval gentlemen and persons more or less connected with the navy among our readers,' we are not unfrequently brought in contact with naiitical affairs. Among other objects of interest the sailors' home and refuge for shipwrecked mariners, at (ireat Yarmouth, has lately come under our notice, and we think it not altogether beyond our duty to say o word in its favour.

In no part of the world are there so many shipwrecks as on the east coast of England. During the year there were no fewer than 000 casualties between Dungeness and the Pentland Firth ; being more than 5(1 per cent, upon the whole number on the entire coast of the United Kingdom. This very large proportion is attributable to the vast number of ships passing and repassing along these shores. It is calculated that not less than 40.000 sail, exclusive of vessels engaged in our fisheries, annually pass and repass through Yarmouth Roads; most of fhem being engaged in carrying the produce of our collieries to London and other markets. This Roadstead is the only natural harbour of refuge on the eastern coast, and it :s not uncommon to see many hundreds of vessels there at the same time; whilst on some occasions a long continuance of adverse winds, either way, will cause a much larger number to remain at anchor.

But Yarmouth Roads are surrounded by a a natural breakwater of very dangerous sands, which in foggy weather, or when heavy gales sweep the coast, occasion many fearful shipwrecks. During the last three years more than 500 vessels were stranded, wrecked, or lost oft' this coast, or compelled to put into Y'armouth harbour with damage. As a necessary consequence the loss of life is also great; and the number of shipwrecked mariners who are landed at Yarmouth, year after year, is very considerable. Tlie benefits which "The Shipwrecked Fishermen and Mariners' Benevolent Society" has rendered at Yarmouth have long been gratefully acknowledged, but it has also been felt that something more w;is required. The survivors of a wreck or the crew of a foundered vessel, are brought on shore always wet and weary, frequently exhausted by cold and hunger—often more dead than alive. There was no place to which they could be carried but the public-house, where it was impossible to obtain, on the instant, those appliances which were so necessary to restore suspended animation, and such other remedies as circumstances require;!. To obviate this evil an Institution was founded at Yarmouth about twelve months since having for its object the social and moral improvement cf the fishermen, beachmen, and seafaring population of the town; and combining the advantages of a sailors' home (so far as they are required here) and especially providing a place of refuge for the shipwrecked and destitute mariners of all nations. 288 shipwrecked and distressed mariners have already been received and relieved. Of this number 20-1 were British seamen and 84 foreigners of all nations.

The inadequacy of the present establishment has, however, been made most painfully apparent during the recent gales which have desolated our coast. In twelve days only, 109 shipwrecked mariners were brought to the Home, and -relieved so far as the present limited resources would permit. In order, therefore, to meet the very urgent demands now niScle upon the committee it has been proposed to erect upon a most cligiCle site,

fronting the sea, lately granted by the Town Council for the purpose, a building fitted with baths and all other necessary appliances, to which shipwrecked mariners cajj be brought at any hour of the day or night, and at which there will be the certainty otflmling all things necessary to restore them to health and strength; and it is firmly believed that by such means many a valuable life (as has already been the case in three instances) may be saved. At a public meeting lately held in the town hall, it was determined to appeal to the humanity and generosity of the public generally to assist the Inhabitants of (Ireat Yarmouth in establishing an institution which may be considered as partaking of a national character. The Mayor of Yarmouth, who has brought this subject to our notice, has generously offered to receive donations; and we doubt not many readers of ours will gladly aid a cause which, at the present time especially, deserves the good wishes of our countrymen. We hope we need not apologise for devoting a few lines to such an object.

IMPROVEMENT IX THE VOLTAIC

PILE.

It is well known that Bunsen's pile, which is but a modification of Grove's, consists of a glazed vessel, containing a cylindrical element of zinc, which surrounds a por»us vessel filled with strong nitric acid, into which a charcoal cylinder has been introduced, the liquid iu the outermost vessel consisting of water acidulated with about 10 parts of sulphuric acid. Now, although this is a ranst powerful combination, and in general use, it has two great inconveniences: first, the quantity of nitrous vapour it evolves is highly unpleasant, and may become dangerous; and, secondly, the current produced is not of constant intensity. M. Thomas has just communicated to the Academy of Sciences a modification which he has effected in this kind of pile, and which would seem to be quite free from the inconvenience alluded to. M. Thomas, in fact, shows that the development of nitrous vapour is one of the chief causes which interfere with the constancy of the current, inasmuch as they attack the copper ribands forming the electrodes, and effect certain chemical combinations, which give rise to counter-currents, and thus impair the principal one. He therefore causes these gases, as they are evolved, to pass into a porous vessel, where they are decomposed. In this process a secondary current is produced which, by the peculiar construction of the apparatus, is turned to account, and tends to correct the inequalities of the principal current. This arrangement also prevents the pile from be coming dirty, as is the case with Hunseii's pile.

Compositions Fob Coatijtg Inox Ship's Bottoms.—The following paragraph has been communicated to the morning papers : — "A number of gentlemen interested iu shipbuilding assembled recently in the Southampton Docks, to Witness the result of an experiment which had excited some interest uum;i r persons of that class. In the early part ui' last May the Royal Mail Company's steamship Atrato was coated on the starboard side with M'lnnes's green copper soap, and on the port side with Peacock and Buchsn's pink composition, for the purpose of practically testing the relative merits of the two articles in keeping the bitton of the ship clean. On docking the Atruto for examination it was found that the rtarboard side was covered with coral pipe, shell-, and barnacles, with a good deal of corrosion; while the port side was perfectly free from coraline incrustation or barnacles, having merely a thin slimy unctuous coating upon it. Tho re-ik is considered as having incontestably proved that preparations of copper are of little value in preventing incrustation or fouling on the bottoms of iron ships, while their galvanic action must, sooner or later, prove injurious to the rivets and plates. The green composition is novr being ecraped off the Atrato."

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Tne above is a sketch of Captain Norton's gossamer cartridge, with spherical hall attached, intended to be used with smooth-bore shot guns, doable or single, fitted with ordinary patent breeches, and so utilise arms of that description in case of emergency. The tapering form of the cartridge allows it to enter freely into the chamber so as to bring the small end as closely as possible to the communication from the nipple. Both the bullet and powder cartridge are covered with cotton net, and the stiffness necessary to preserve the general form of the completed cartridge is gained by pasting a strip of thin paper around it in such a manner as to leave each end exposed. Curtis and Harvey's improved " Large grain powder" has been found to be best suited lo these cartridges. The net surrounding the bullet will retain any lubricating»!natter which may be preferred, and so facilitate loading and prevent leading of the barrel.

POUPARD'S IMPROVED WHEEL-SKID.

Mb. William Poupabd, Engineer, of the Blackfriars-road, Southwark, ha? lately introduced an improved wheel-skid or shoe, which many persons think highly of. He forms his skid with a tail piece extending backward from the wheel-chamber Bo as to form an inclined guide or path for the wheel to follow on entering the skid. This tail piece may be carried entirely through to the front of the shoe, and he prefers to form it of wrought-iron or steel, while the body of the shoe may be made of cast or wrought-iron. He finds the'best results to be obtained when the projecting tail piece is curved upwards, but he does not limit himself to so shaping it. Fig. 1 of the

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accompanying engravings is a side elevation of a wheel-skid or shoe, constructed according to his invention, and Fig. 2 is a section through the line a b of the same. A is the body of the skid or shoe, which is attached in the ordinary manner to a chain /•'.- /;' //' are sides or side pieces forming a chamber for the wheel; C is thy tail piece, made by preference of steel or wrought-iron, and riveted or bolted to the body A, as shown by the dotted lines in Fig. 2. He prefers to form the tail piece of a curve to correspond with the contour of a wheel, but this shape can be varied without departing from the essential features of the invention. Fig. 3 shows a wheel just entering the skid; to provide for this raise the chain /•'. •which brings the tail flush or nearly so with the ground, and allows the wheel to run in; let go the chain, and the wheel comes to rest in the skid. The improved skid it now being made in large quantities.

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which are respectively an elevation and the plan of the stern of a boat fitted with the plates. There are two steering plates, A, one on each side of the vessel; and they work in vertical casings, the positions of which are indicated by dotted lines at B in the plan, Fig. 2. Each plate, A, turns on a joint at its front end, and when not required to turn the vessel to the side it is on, is drawn up within its casing. Independently of their peculiar suitableness for flat-bottomed boats, these plates have a greater control and act more quickly than the ordinary rudder, fiom their being placed on each side of the centre line of the vessel. A pair of the plates at one end is sufficient for ordinary requirements, whilst for intricate navigation a pair at each end may be used, to be actuated either simultaneously or separately.

Mr. Downie asked, at what angle the steering plates were set, and whether they had ever been practically tried; and, if so, with what result? Mr. Chaplin said that whilst various angles might be adopted, he preferred that of 37° from the line of the keel. The plates had been successfully tried. He understood that seventeen boats were being or about to be built in England with steering plates on. the same plan as that described, being chiefly for the Government. On trying the steering plates in a small boat, it was found that when plates were acting on the same side at both ends, the boat turned round on a radius equal to its length. Another modification had been applied to a vessel built by his firm, and sent to Java, consisting of a simple conical shell oscillating on an axis, a piece being cut out of the cone, and one side or other being made to project as required; but this was only suitable for small vessels, where the apparatus was not to project through the deck. The vessels which he mentioned as in course of building were to draw 2 feet water, to carry 1,000 men, and coals for a voyage of 50 miles. They were 220 to 240 feet long, and 35 to 40 feet beam, and almost perfectly flat. They were, he understood, intended for the navigation of the Ganges, and other rivers of india. The steering apparatus was adapted as well for deep sea vessels as for those of shallow draught; and for screw

vessels it was peculiarly fitted, for the screw could be fitted between the plates. In the event of any injury being sustained by one of tho plates, it could be hoisted on deck without trouble and repaired. If the steering plates were projected, one at each end of the vessel on opposite sides, ind so as to be parallel to each other, tho vesselwonld move in a lateral direction, and would be easily brought alongside of a pier.

AULD'S APPARATUS FOR SUPPLYIX8 STEAM BOILERS WITH WATER.

Mb. David Auld, of Glasgow, Engineer, Ins jnst patented the " automatic mechanical arrangement for the efficient supplying of steam boilers with water, so as to ensure both a plentiful supply anil certainty of action," which is represented in the annexed engravings. Fig. 1 is a partially sectional elevation of one modification of the apparatus. Fig. 2 is a partially sectional elevation of another modification of the apparatus, in which the several parts are arranged in a somewhat different manner. In the first arrangement, Fig. 1, the water for the supply of the boiler flows into the apparatus • from an elevated tank or re*ervoir through the feed-pipe which opens into the valve chamber A, the efflux of the water being prevented by the clack-valve B, which closes the entrance to tho valve chamber upon the occurrence of buck pressure on the water. From the valve-box the water flows into the chamber C, and thence upwards into the cup-effiiped chamber D above; the chamber Chas two flanged tubular openings in the lower part, which serve to connect the apparatus to the steain-pipe E aud the pipe F, through which the water flows into the boiler G. The steam-pipe E is carried downwards into tbe boiler to the proper water level, and the wutcrpipe nearly to the bottom. The flow of steam through tho pipe J? is controlled by the valve // which is pressed up against its seiting by the pressure of the steam within the boiler, and is prevented from falling away too far therefrom hy the small bridge-piece /, which extends across tho steam-pipe. The inlet to the pipe F is in lite manner controlled by the valve J, which rests upon the bridge-piece A', during tho time that Hi water is flowing into the boiler. The tabular seating of the valve // is made conical at the upper part to receive the lower extremity of the tube //, which passes up through the chiiraber C and D, and enters the copper globe M, terminating near its upper part. The tube L is filed in position by the angular stays N, the lower bent extremities of which are bolted to the globe it, the bolts sen-ing also to connect the globe to the short flanged pipe O, which slides loosely in the opening of the cap P of the chamber D. Thu cap is bolted to the flange of the chamber D, * diaphragm of india-rubber or other suitable flexible material being interposed between tl* faces of the flanges; the inner part of thii diaphragm is held between the flanges of the pipe O. With this arrangement the water cannot escape, at the same time the pipe O, carrying tho globe M, is free to slide up and down in the opening in the cap P. The globe 31 is formed in two parts which are bolted together, and at the upper part there is an eye by means of which it is attached to the chain Q, which is secured by » nut to the upper extremity of the segmental part of the balanced lever S. The scgmentnl part oi this lever is hollowed out like a grooved pullfv, and at the central part of the lever there are laterally projecting knife edges similar to titase of a scale beam. These knife edges rest upon a lardened steel plate, which is supported in «loti made in the forked extremity of the pill»r S; this pillar is carried upon an overhanging brwOrfi cast on the side of the chamber C. To the outer part of the rocking lever B is fitted an adjustable counterweight T, which is fixed at tbe proper distance from the centre by the set screw llArching over the centre of the lover K and its supporting pillar is a bridge-piece /'. which a bolted to the lever R; this bridge-piece h«s a segmental slot made in it, in which nrc fitted two adjustable sliding stops W. These stops servo to check the lateral motion of the vertical swinging rod A', the lower end of which is carried on a stud fiied in .one of the upwardly projecting ends of the pillar S; at the upper part of the rod is fixed the weight I', which is fastened thereto by a set screw. The weight T is fixed at such part of the lever R, so that it' counterbalances the weight of the globe Af and its appurtenances, together with » certain quantity of water in the globe, the upholding action being assisted by the overhanging weight Y on the rod X. As the water flows in from the supply-pipe and-up into the globe M, when it reaches a predetermined height therein, the' accumulated weight overcomes the gravity of the weight T, so that the lever R turns upon its centre, and the weight Y is thrown forward against the right-hand stop W\ this action facilitates descent of the globe M, the short pipe O descending into the cup-shaped chamber i>, at the same time the transverse pin at the lower part of the tube L comes in contact with the upper end of the spindle of the valve H, and the end of tlie tube enters the conical part of the tubular valve seating. The depression of the valve allows the steam to pass up the tube /. into the globe M. its pressure causing the air valve Z, which is otherwise kept open for the egress of the air as the water flows up in the globe, to shut. The pressure of the steam on the surface of the water in the globe causes the valve J to open, and the water Hows down the pipe F into the boiler, the rt«am pressure serving also to close the valve B, which prevents the water being forced back through the feed-pipe. The inflowing of the water into the boiler continues until the globe M is so far reduced in weight that the counterpoise (sufficient to overcome its gravity and that of the veight 1'in its overhanging position to the right of the centre of the lever It. When this takes place the globe M a raised by the motion of the lever JfZ; the valves // and K are closed by the pressure ol iteun in. the (boiler, and the apparatus is again restored to its normal position. In this manner the due and effective feeding of the boiler is kept

AULD'S APPARATUS FOR SUPPLYING STEAM BOILERS WITH WATER.

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FID, I.

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up with unerring certainty, the filling or partial illing of the globe, and the discharge of its con,ents into the boiler being regulated according to the evaporative power of the boiler.

In the modification shown in Fig. 2 the water rom the overhead tank or reservoir flows ;hrough the vertical feed-pipe a, the lower part of which is closed by the valve />, which opens .nto the cast-iron water-chamber c; this chamber ms fitted in the upper part a cock d, for the discharge of air from the chamber as the water flows nto it from the feed-pipe a. The lower part of ;he chamber c is cast with twf flanged tubular openings, by which the apparatus is attached to the steam-pipe e and feed-pipe f, which project out above the boiler g. The steam and feed-pipes are fitted with valves h and j, which when open rest on the bridge-pieces i and k in manner similar to the arrangement of the corresponding parts in Fig. 1. The spindle of the valve 4 is prolonged upwards so as to enter the lower extremity of the tube /, which is fitted in the centre of the cylindrical vessel m, the upper part of the tube being held in position by the transverse stays n. The vessel m is by preference made of copper, and it has at the lower part a valve o, by means of which the contents escape into the chamber c when the valve spindle comes in contact with the bottom of the chamber. The vessel m is connected by means of the bridge-piece and rod p to the chain g, which is attached to the segmental extremity of the rocking lever r. The arrangement of this lever and the parts connected therewith are in all respects similar to the corresponding parts delineated in Fig. 1, and do not therefore require further description. The water from the tank or reservoir Hows through the pipe a, and falls into the vessel m, which when nearly filled descends to the position shown in Fig. 2, the de scent causing the valves h and o to open. The steam having now free ingress to the chamber e through the tube /, its pressure closes the valve 6, and acting upon the surface of the water, the valve.; is opened, and the water tlows into the boiler <j through the pipe/. The flow of water continues

until the weight of the vessel m is sufficiently reduced to admit of its being raised by the counterweight I, and thus restored to its normal position. The upward motion of the vessel m is followed by the opening of the valve b, and the closing of the valves A and j, and the self-acting operation of refilling the vessel m again goes on.

"By means of either of these modifications ot my improved automatic feed apparatus," says Mr. Auld, "the due supply of water to boilers is most efficiently provided for, at the same time the simple arrangement of the several parts almost precludes the possibility of derangement."

CLAYTON'S PATENT BRICK AND TILE MACHINERY.

Wk have been invited, prior to the opening of the Smithfield Club Show, to inspect the working of some brick and tile machinery just completed by Messrs. H. Clayton and Co., in accordance with their several patents, and which machinery will be exhibited in motion during the continuance of the show, partly in Baker-street, and partly at Messrs. Clayton's Atlas Works, Upper 1'ark Place (within a few minutes' walk of Baker-street), where alone the larger machines can be shown; the space procurable in the Baker-street building being too limited to admit of the exhibition of any of the machines, excepting one worked by hand power, but which is yet capable of turning out several hundred bricks an hour, whether solid or perforated, or a proportionate quantity of tiles, drain pipes, or similar articles. Before describing in detail the late improvements made in Messrs. H. Clayton and Co's machines, we think it well to observe that much credit is due to these gentlemen for their untiring per?everance in introducing modifications in the details of their machines, which extended practice has from time to time suggested, and is ever certain to suggest when there is any disposition to profit by experience. The principle of "leaving well enough alone" is doubtless, as regards many things, a very safe one, especially when, changes are made, a» it were,

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