« EelmineJätka »
is that it has produced eight volumes, com- sufficiently paid to enable him to devote his posed of papers by various shipbuilders, en- undivided time to the interests of the Instigineers, naval officers, and others. A value tution.
attaches to some of these papers for the prac Then the offices of the Institution are MECHANICS MAGAZINE. tical information they contain ; others treat inadequate. They were originally taken, we
of theory in its highest phases, and, if we thought, until the executive had time and
fail to see that they are likely to be of the opportunity to select a place conveniently LONDON: FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 11, 1868. slightest practical benefit in our generation, situated, and in all other respects suited to,
we do not fail to recognize in them evidences and worthy of, a society having an excellent
of deep and well-cultured minds, and we wish beginning, under most exalted patronage. THE INSTITUTION OF NAVAL them all-speed in the development of princi- Instead of the present deserted-looking apart
ples which shall sweep away some of the ment, the wretched exterior only being ARCHITECTS.
numerous obstacles that stand in the way of eclipsed by the scant and forlorn aspect CORE than eight years have now passed real progress. Others of the papers, again, within, the offices should be altogether of a Institution. We remember the lively satis- putting before us the pet crotchets of their to be easy of access; the secretary should be faction we experienced, in common, we authors; but not a little of this was, perhaps, at his post, and the offices, supplied with the believe, with every one present, when we saw to have been expected. Well, then, in so far current scientific literature, should be always for the first time assembled in the hall of the as we know, we have already summarized the accessible for members and associates, many Society of Arts, the large number of gentle work done by the Institution in eight years. of whom would doubtless be daily in the men of high status and undoubted abilities, If there be any other lasting benefit accom- neighbourhood, and glad to avail themselves and noted the hearty, not to say enthusiastic, plished of which we are at present ignorant, of a known common place of meeting to dismanner in which questions of the highest im- our knowledge of it shall ensure its record in cuss and ventilate the various interesting portance were taken up and discussed. That our pages.
scientific problems constantly recurring. meeting was indeed a gratifying one, for it Now, it appears to us, keeping in mind the Steps should also be taken towards establish. was an augury that, in the future, the great objects of the Institution, that but little has ing a library worthy of the noble professions and complex art of naval architecture would been done by it. Had such an institution which it is the object of the Institution to be steadily advanced, and that England's been fully successful, its voice should now be foster and develope, and of the country to ships of war beyond all doubt, be the heard, and be held to be authoritative upon which we belong. very best that science and art could produce. questions respecting our ironclads, questions One great danger in public societies is the No institution could have had a broader or a which are bandied about by persons of no liability which exists for their being made nobler field for its labours : its advancement known standing or merit, and whose greatest the vehicle for giving publicity to pet theories was the nation's good England's supremacy anxiety, could their minds be probed, would or rival inventions, and in the case of such an on the ocean. What greater work than this? be found to be their own advancement The institution as the one of which we are now Nor was it without that element of success Institution of Naval Architects should tear writing, this danger exists to a greater extent which results, or is supposed to result, from the shreds of rivalry from the broadside and than in other public bodies. To get an the patronage of the great and influential of turret systems, assign to each their sphere of invention adopted by the Government is in the land, for its patrons were of the most service, or black list the more faulty system. some cases equivalent to the sudden realizaillustrious. It may not be amiss to recal the There is a movement now on the tapis for an tion of a fortune, and although this is not by avowed objects of the Institution. Here they international system of tonnage measurement any means a common occurrence, still there are : First, the bringing together of the which offers scope for the action of the is a large class of inventors and patentees results of the experience which many ship-Institution. Then there is the large number who believe that they, and they alone, possess builders, marine engineers, naval officers, of overloaded vessels which continue to go either the best anchor, the best rudder, the yachtsmen, and others, were acquiring, quite out, and go down. There is room for bene- best anti-fouling composition for ships' independently of each other, in various parts ficent action here. Steel and iron ship con- bottoms, &c., the best method of reefing and of the country. Secondly, the carrying out struction is susceptible of improvement, and furling sails, or the best of the thousand and by the collective agency of the Institution of offers a wide field for observation and one things which fall within the scope of such experimental and other inquiries as advancement. Then, granting that we are this Institution, and it therefore becomes an might be deemed essential to the promotion not out in our estimate of the Society's object of importance to exclude as far as of the science and art of shipbuilding, but labours and success, the question follows possible from the meetings of the Institution which were of too great magnitude for private What are the causes of failure ? These, the mere puffing of inventions. persons to undertake individually. Thirdly, unfortunately, are many; fortunately, they From the report of the council of the the examination of new inventions, and the are remediable. Let us outsiders venture to Institution, read by the hon. secretary, at investigation of those professional questions point out a few particulars which, in our the last meeting, we regret to learn that the which often arose and were left undecided judgment, are indispensable for its success. finances are not in a flourishing condition, because no public body to which professional In the first place, unlike most other scien- and that the Government had been applied to reference could be made existed. The means tific and mechanical bodies, we only hear of for an annual grant. In these days of disenby which it was proposed to accomplish the it once in a year. This is a defect, we think, dowment, this does not promise well for the first of these objects consisted in the reading and an undoubted source of weakness. We future of the Institution. Surely, this state of and discussion of papers at periodical meet- are of opinion that at a time like the present, things should not be - that here, in maritime ings of the Institution, the exhibition of when the art of war involves the expenditure England, an institution should be started drawings and models, the publication of of so many millions of money, when the under all the most favourable conditions that reports of the proceedings of the Institution, claimants for novel modes of construction could well be expected, should receive the and the establishment of a professional library are numberless, aud when papers and maga- patronage of some of the highest in the State, and museum. The means by which the second zines canvass the merits and demerits of iron should have for its objects the fostering of a object was to be effected would, it was said, clad ships and guns in a manner calculated science perhaps dearer and of more import to of necessity vary with the nature of the en- to bewilder the public mind, the Institution most Englishmen than any that we could quiries to be instituted. The objects embraced of Naval Architects should speak out fre- name, should be in existence eight years, and under the third head were to be carried out quently and distinctly upon these great then dwindle away for want of funds, and be by the council of the Institution, or by special questions, with all the authority attaching to obliged to appeal to the Government for aid. committees appointed by it.
the collective mechanical genius of the No; we believe there is ample sympathy in These being the avowed objects of the country.
the breasts of the members of the profession Institution, the question naturally arises The next element of failure consists, we which it represents to keep such an instituHow far have these objects been attained ? believe, in the want of a cultivated naval tion far above financial depression. But the We fear that little, if any, progress has been architect as secretary. We know the diffi- Institution must arouse from its torpor, and made in some of these directions. We are culty in obtaining a gentleman combining put forth its strength, must let its vitality be unwilling to underrate any benefits that may professional knowledge with high theoretical seen, and heard, and felt to be a power work, have accrued from the Institution, and there- training and literary aptitude, but we believe ing for a public good, and in an open and fore, at once, frankly acknowledge that, in such an acquisition is not an impossibility, unmistakable public way. giving birth to a school of naval architecture, and, that obtained, he must watch and work it conferred on the profession an undoubted constantly and energetically. The gentleman benefit. The want of a school of naval who at present holds the post of secretary is THE ANGLO-MEDITERRANEAN architecture had been long felt; indeed, the also principal of the School of Naval Archiabsence of such a school, in a country like tecture at South Kensington, and possesses
TELEGRAPH CABLE. this, was, to our mind, simply a disgrace. It considerable attainments, being eminent as a that the pleasure, therefore, we here affirm mathematician, and is no doubé competent to At the endngfosfaldlist the prospectus of that the Institution has accomplished in this grapple with some of the abstruse questions Company made its appearance, the company matter a work worthy of its name, while it is which have to be dealt with in the study of being formed for the purpose of providing a a work for which it should receive the coun- naval architecture. But, as before stated, direct and thoroughly efficient line of teletry's gratitude. If we ask what further prac- we think the secretary of this Institution graph to Egypt. To accomplish this object tical benefit has emanated from it, the reply should be a naval architect, and should be arrangements and provisional contracts were
of 350lb., the Atlantic being 100lb. By work-Association to Norwich, we had the in one row, the transverge sections in a row
entered into with the Telegraph Construction in. The direct distance from Malta to Alex- remains are found in the lowest parts of the and Maintenance Company: first, for the andria is 816 miles, and it is on that direct Scottish coal field. They are found imbedded purchase of their overland line, in perfect line that the principal soundings have been either in shale or limestone, and on the sea. working order, from Susa on the French- taken. The line shows a series of undulations. coast, near Dunbar, they are very plentiful Italian frontier to Modica in Sicily; second, Commencing at Malta, the water gradually at a level below high-water mark. In many " for the making, laying, and delivering to deepens to fifty fathoms, to which depth the instances, however, they are so much crushed the company, in perfect working order, shore end will extend, from there it deepens that it is difficult to ascertain the specific within four months, of a deep sea telegraph to 270 fathoms at a distance of about ninety character of their internal structure. cable, having an external covering suited to miles, the end of the Malta bank, wher erather The first part of the process, after finding the known requirements of the Mediterranean a sudden fall takes place, and then it deepens a coral, is to have it cut transversely by a bed, from Malta to Alexandria.” The same to 1,500 fathoms ; at 150 miles the depth is lapidary, and as they are excessively hard, in contract enters into other arrangements for 1,000 fathoms, gradually deepening to 1,600, consequence of the great quantity of silica working, &c., which it is needless to mention which is maintained for some distance, as they contain, the workman is obliged to use here, the only other special point being that far as 300 miles ; from there it shallows to 890 diamond-dust in the operation. Next, they are the contractors are obliged to maintain the fathoms at 440 miles, which is about the cut longitudinally. These two operations must cable in an efficient state for twelve months. nearest point to the African shore, the cable be superintended by the geologist, other
The first ship, with a portion of the cable passing within a distance of about thirty miles wise the important portions of the structure on board, left during the course of last week, from Marsa Sousa, a point not very far remote of the animal will be missed, as the slightest and as we are anxious to place before our from the ancient Cyrene. From this point touch will take away the interesting parts. readers details of all the important telegraphic the soundings gradually increase to 1,200 The pieces are next fixed to a piece of thick works carried out, we are now enabled to fathoms at 600 miles, and to 1,500 at 700 plate glass, by means of a mixture of beessupply them with such information as could miles, lessening again to 1,000 fathoms at 760, wax and resin in equal proportiou s by weight, be obtained.
and then shallowing to 500 fathoms at thirty- which mixture is warmed over a spirit lamp In June last a short cable was laid across five miles from Alexandria, and then rapidly when required for use. After the piece of the Straits of Messina, completing the com- shallowing to the harbour. From these coral is attached to the glass, it is ground munication between Susa and Modica, thus figures it will be seen that the greatest part of down to the required thickness with a mixture performing that portion of the contract; that the cable will have to be laid in deep water, of fine emery-dust and putty powder, upon the remainder of the contract will also be but considering its strength from the use of the leaden plate of the lapidary. completed in time, there is but little question. homogeneous iron, and its small specific
The finishing polishing operations are perThe contract for the cable was to provide gravity from the external coating of hemp, we formed by the geologist himself, who rubs one " capable of transmitting messages at a cannot see any great difficulty in the paying out them down upon a hone, kept wet by means speed equal to the existing Atlantic cable,” operations ; we therefore hope shortly to be of water. The manipulations in this part of and as the distance of the present cable will able to announce to our readers the success the process must be very delicate, and Mr. be about one half that of the Atlantic, an ful completion of this line, thereby duplicating Thomson has, in difficult cases, been someinsulated conductor has been provided of our telegraphic communication with Egypt, times occupied for ten hours in finishing a half the weight. The conductor throughout and strengthening the links of our chain with single specimen. Sometimes also, after the length consists of a strand of seven copper our possessions in India.
working many hours, a few touches too wires weighing 150lb. per nautical mile; this
much will destroy much of the value of the is covered with alternate coatings of Chatter
specimen. After they are finished, they are ton's compound and gutta-percha to the GEOLOGICAL APPLICATIONS OF
detached from the thick piece of glass by the weight of 200lb. per nautical mile, making
aid of gentle heat, and a number of them are the insulated conductor of the gross weight
fixed in rows upon a sheet of patent plate
URING the recent visit of the British glass, the longitudinal sections being placed ing this cable with the improved method, by means of reflecting galvanometers, unques- pleasure of examining some very beautiful beneath, and so on alternately. Nothing tionably a good speed will be obtained, and unique photographic negatives. Each has been found to answer better to cement different indeed to the employment of the negative was of solid translucent stone, of the them to the glass than common gum arabic. former printing instruments. The conductor very hardest character, and its details were Any semi-transparent substances known to thus insulated was served in the usual manner not produced by man, for they consisted of the geologist may be treated in the same way, with hemp, and received an external sheath- sections of the organs of extinct animals such, for instance, as thin sections of teeth, ing of fifteen small galvanized homogeneous which once lived and breathed, but whose bones, and agates. iron wires, further protected by a coating of internal structure has been marvellously pre As regards corals, Mr. Thomson has made bituminous compound over a serving of jute. served in the fossil state, during the lapse of upwards of two thousand sections, and has
The shore end of twenty miles differs only untold ages. Mr. James Thomson, of Glas- undertaken to prepare a duplicate set for the in its size and sheathing, which consisted of gow, is the geologist who first carried out the British Museum. * He has been working at No. 1 galvanized iron wires; the total length excellent idea of sawing thin plates out of the subject for seven years, and wishes that of manufactured cable being 950 miles, the those few fossils which are translucent, then others would in the same manner make secwhole of which, with the exception of the of polishing the plates, and printing from tions of the extinct corals of England, Wales, shore end, being manufactured at the con- them by photography, thus gaining the and Ireland. One of the corals thus sectioned, tractors' works at Greenwich. The conductor power of indefinitely and truthfully multiply. the c. Fungitis of Ure, was first figured was insulated at their gutta-percha works in ing pictures showing the internal structure of by the Rev. David Ure in his history of the Wharf-road. The shore end was sheathed extinct animals.
Rutherglen and Eastkilbride, in 1793, and by Mr. W. T. Henley, at his works at North Mr. Thomson has confined his own work there has been a great deal of controversy Woolwich, where also all the iron wire re- to animals of the Pollop or coral variety. about it ever since 1845, naturalists not being quired for this cable was drawn and gal-Corals belong to the same family as the agreed to what genus it ought to be assigned. vanized.
anemone, and differ only from the anemone This fossil is the property of the Royal The contractors' steamship " Chiltern" in the fact that they secrete solid matter. Society. of Edinburgh, who sent it to Mr. sailed from the Thames last week for Malta ; This solid matter is secreted at the base of Thomson to be sectioned. At the British she has taken out with her the shore end and the Pollop, and the animals themselves vary Association at Norwich, a small grant of £25 a portion of the main cable; the remainder of much in size, from the little “coral insect was made to Mr. Thomson, to aid him in the main cable will follow in a few days in making the beautiful branch-like bunches of carrying on his work with the Scottish corals. the “ Scanderia."
coral so well known, to individuals as big as Photographic prints from these hard stone The straight course from Malta to Alex- the common anemone, who each form only negatives have been taken by Mr. Robinson, andria never having been surveyed- a refer- their own single large secretion, and do not of Glasgow, upon albumenized paper, in the ence to the chart will at once show the by union build up large tree-like structures. ordinary manner. We have pointed out to absence of soundings-H.M.S." Newport" These large fossil corals, as found singly by Mr. Thomson the perishable character of the was dispatched from Malta in the beginning the geologist, are about the length of a com- pictures thus taken from his valuable little of July to survey and find a good route for mon hen's egg, but not so broad; they are originals, and he contemplates getting other the cable, although from the wording of the thicker at one end than the other, and some- copies printed in carbon. The most beautiprospectus that the cable was to have “ an what resemble a curved pear in shape. When ful prints he can obtain from them will be of external covering suited to the known require- found, they are often imbedded in a thick course photographic transparencies upon ments of the Mediterranean bed," it might superficial crust, so that none but a good glass. In these pictures, to secure permahave been imagined that the survey had zoophyte geologist would be likely to know nency, it is desirable not to use bichloride already been made. The 6 Newport re- the real contents of the stony mass.
(f mercury in toning, to well wash the prints turned at the end of July, having sounded a These larger fossil corals are those which after fixing, and to cement with hardened line right across, showing that the nature of have been photographically printed, and not Canada balsam a second sheet of glass orer the depth admitted of the submergence of a the smaller ones, which require the aid of a the negative, so as completely to protect the suitable cable, although the depth in places microscope to be examined. Many Pollops film from the action of the atmosphere. Mr. was rather great.
now existing find their fossilized representa- Thomson has already had transparencies and The following figures will give about the tives in geological strata, but those collected micro-photographs taken in the copying depth of water the cable will have to be laid by Mr. Thomson are extinct species, whose camera from his stone negatives,
ING THE PURITY OF TINSAFETY EXPLOSIVES.
the inmates and their luggage are cleared if possible, the cable might be removed and laid
out, the platform is completely deserted, and in a safer course. A LTHOUGH companies still continue to the empty carriages are either backed out or
The French Atlantic Company have apparently run goods trains over the same metals are ready for a fresh influx of occupants. obtained their money, for we understand that the that convey the " express " and the “ limited Provided the goods traffic of a line is made order for the cable, together with the first paymail," yet they have long ago recognized the subservient to that of the opposite descrip- tion and Maintenance Company. The “Great necessity for providing separate accommoda- tion, it forms quite as important an item in Eastern ” will be again employed, and she may tion at termini and important intermediate the company's arrangements; but in order to be shortly expected in the Thames for the necesstations for the two descriptions of traffic. prevent the accumulation of articles, and the sary fittings and work required. Our leading railways are existing examples consequent overcrowding of space, frequently of the truth of this statement. The South- very limited, there should be sufficient Eastern, the London, Chatham, and Dover, mechanical power at hand to unload and NOTES ON RECENT SCIENTIFIC DISthe London and North-Western, and the dispose of all traffic once in twenty-four COVERIES AND THEIR PRACTICAL APSouth-Western, have their goods termini at hours.
PLICATIONS. Bricklayer's Arms, Blackfriars, Camden
CRYSTALLIZED TIN FOIL AND MODE OF ASCERTAINTown, and Nine Elms, respectively. It is ELECTRICITY AND TELEGRAPHY. true, that a certain amount of goods traffic is allowed to be run in to the other termini, but W!
E learn by a telegram from Copenhagen that APER covered with tin foil, having a crystal
PAPER it must be brought by passenger trains, and
they have received intelligence from the lized surface, and coated with transparent varis of a very light description. Milk cans, Jutland coast of the successful submergence from nishes or gelatine of various colours, has been in which on some lines bestow upon the trains there of the first section, 200 miles, of the Anglo- great demand in Paris and Germany for ornamentthat convey them to the metropolis the title Danish submarine cable. This is a cable of about ing fancy goods of various descriptions. It is an of “milk trains," are a specimen of what may 300 miles in length to connect the north of Eng- old idea newly revived, but it has been very probe termed “ light goods traffic.” Similar to land with Denmark. The conductor is insulated fitable to the manufacturers of late. Puscher, of the improvements that have taken place in the construction of stations devoted to the with Hooper's material, and was sheathed at the Nurnberg, publishes the process adopted for getting reception of passenger trains, a correspond- works of Messrs. R. S. Nowall and Co., at Gateshead. the crystallized surface on the tin, which is as ing progress has been made in many A meeting of the shareholders of Reuter's Tele- follows:--A solution is made by dissolving two instances in those appropriated to the load gram Company was held on the 7th inst., when the parts of chloride of tin in four parts of hot water, ing, and unloading of goods. The huge agreement with the Postmaster-General, for the and to this is added one part of nitric acid and timber truss, with its massive tiebeams, has purchase of their property, was brought before two parts of hydrochloric acid. The foil, he says, .
is to be dipped into this mixture and left until the iron braced principal, but its ultimate disuse and International Telegraph Company was held on not yet altogether given place to the light them and agreed to without opposition.
A meeting of the shareholders of the Electric crystals appear; but it answers very well, we find,
to brush the foil over with the liquid. In either is merely a question of time. The necessity Tuesday last. The provisional agreement entered case, as soon as the crystals appear, the foil must of a larger span will surpass its capabilities, into between the directors and the Postmaster- he rinsed with cold water.
It will do to sponge and it will, like hundreds of other wooden General for the purchase of all the Company's the surface well with a soft sponge and plenty of constructions, be compelled to yield to its property was brought by the chairman before the water.
When the solution is applied to cold foil invincible rival.
meeting, and after some little discussion was un- the crystals are small, but very brilliant. Large Independently of the mere increase of animously agreed to.
crystals can be procured by heating the tin foil space allotted to goods traffic, great strides The completion of the work required for chang- before the solution is applied. This can be done have been made in the mechanical appliances ing the shore ond of the Zandvoort cable from by placing the foil on a hot plate, and brushing and facilities for manipulating the heavier Dunwich to Lowestoft, alluded to in our last week's on the solution when the melting point of the tin descriptions of merchandize. As a proof of impression, took place on Friday last, when the is nearly reached. After the rinsing the foil is what can be done in lifting and shifting cation between London and Amsterdam re-esta-nish or gelatine is applied. We have seen some heavy weights, the arrangements at the late blished after only a few hours’ delay. The dolay rory beautiful specimens of this manufacture coated Exposition were amply demonstrative. One was very trifling, owing to the manner in which with varnishes coloured with the aniline dyes. of the problems, which until lately presented the work was carried out. The new cable being Puscher mentions that the solution named above a good deal of difficulty respecting its satis- laid to the selected spot, it was only necessary to may be used as a test for the purity of tin, inasfactory solution, was the transhipment of lift the old cable, cut it, and splice on to the new. much as tin containing only as little as one per goods, especially when there was a great to the end of the new cable at Lowestoft four cent. of lead or copper will not give a crystallized difference of level to be overcome between additional wires had been erected from the Dars- surface; and he recommends that the test be apthe water and the land. The best plan to ham Station of the Great Eastern line, whore the plied to tinned iron cooking utensils, in which the
presence of load would be highly objectionable. overcome these obstacles is to lay out the old wires branched off to Dunwich.
The Telegraph Construction and Maintenance
The recent explosion at Pemberton, near Wigan, sidings, and wharves, so that a long narrow Company's steamship * Chiltern" left last wook which seems to show that dynamite is not so safe quay should be placed between two parallel for Malta with the shore end and portion of the an explosive as has been supposed, will once more lines of road. A couple of cranes fixed main cable for the new direct route from Malta to call attention to the so-called “safety” powders, opposite one another at equal distances, will Alexandria.
and as the most recent invention in this direction thus command the waterway, and their On Tuesday last, the “Hawk” steamer, with we may notice that of Dr. Nisser. The inventor united sweep will embrace anything within ongineering staff on board, left the Thames to makes two compositions, non-explosivo while apart, the radii of their separate arms. The com- ropair the recent break in the 1866 Atlantic and sifts them together when required for use. monest means of transhipping goods among
cablo. When the break first occurred it was The powders, therefore, can be stored and transus is by a hand or steam crane, which understood that the Anglo-American Telegraph ported with perfect safety. The ingredients of one revolves upon a pivot, and, after hoisting its Company would send out immediately to have it composition, we believe, are mainly chlorate of burden, turns round bodily and deposits it in repaired, but now, just one month after the mishap, potash and nitre ; the other is composed of sulphur, the adjoining waggon. Our readers are no
we find a vessel has departed. The Anglo-Ameri- woody fibre, and some cheap carbonaceous materials. doubt acquainted with Sir William Arm-struction Company's steamer " Hawk" (which had a powder results which, from experiments made in
can Company have chartered the Telegraph Con- When these two compositions are sifted together strong's hydraulic crane, in which the pres- to be recalled from Malta) and an officient staff Cornwall on some of the hardost granitos, soems sure of water, acting upon the pistons, raises from the same company to execute the necessary to possess about four times the strongth of ordinary the load. This mechanical agent is in daily repairs, under the superintendence of Mr. J. d. blasting powder, and which, we are told, costs rather use with “ La Companie de Lyon,” which Laws, who is well known as one of our leading loss than the blasting powder. The mixed comalso employs the hydraulic lift, consisting of electricians, whose services the Anglo-American position we have seen did not explode either on a platform, supported upon the end of the Telegraph Company have spocially engaged.
friction or percussion. A great prejudice oxists rod of an hydraulic press, which imparts It will be nearly two months bofore the repairs against the employment of chlorate of potash in the ascending and descending movements. are completed—dating from the breakdown-a explosives, on the supposition that the manufacture Besides these, there are cranes with endless truly great delay, and suicidal if there had been must be dangerous. Employed in this way, howchains; others specially constructed for the only one cable. We have alluded to the necessity ever, there is really no risk in the manufacture unloading of coal and massive blocks of policy that has in so many places been found of mention, are not novelties. Similar compositions
of keeping a repairing ship at Newfoundland or mixing. Safety powders of this kind, we should stone, and others, again, of a portable cha- great advantago—and we are glad to see that in were patented by Ehrhardt, somo years since, on racter, which can be transported on a truck presiding over a meeting of the Anglo-American which these profess to be an improvement. to a small station not possessing a sufficient Company, their chairman, Sir R. A. Glass, is re- Ehrhardt made use of expensive materials, and amount of traffic to warrant the expense of ported to have stated, "It was the intention of thus an invention otherwise valuable has not come erecting a permanent one. In one point of the directors to keep a ship, with proper hands on
much into use. Miners and quarrymen are too view, a much larger amount of space is board, at St. John's or Heart's Content, so that apt to consider cheapness before everything else. required for a gcods than a passenger station. In the event of an accident it might be repaired Firstly, the unloading of a goods train occu- in two or three days. Although this would entail
IMPORTANT some expense, it would be in the shape of insurance, STEAM MACHINERY. -Every Boiler should have a
USERS pies a considerable time, and a large quantity and the outlay would not fall entirely upon the Feed Pump independent of the Steam Engine; This of the contents frequently remains knocking about for some days upon the platform before join them in it." The fault happens to bo about who are now using exclusively the Donkey Pumps it is finally removed. Contrast this with the the same spot as the break of last year, and we manufactured by Ålex. Wilson and Co., Engineers, rapid manner in which a passenger train is understand that instructions have been given Vauxhall Iron Works, Nine Elms, London, S.W.emptied. In about ten minutes the whole of for taking soundings in the neighbourhood, so that, [Advt.]
series of the sovereign (gold coins), showing their tending to make the office available for scientific REPORT OF THE STANDARDS
full legal weight; together with single standards, researches. It has appeared to them desirable for COMMISSION.
showing the smallest weight sanctioned in legal carrying out this intention that the office should
tolerance. THE Royal Commission appointed to inquire
be made a place of deposit of all standards of antiTHE into the condition of our standard measures of twenty-two yards divided into links; the rate character which have been made available for
In measures of length :-Standards of the chain quarian or historical interest, of standards of accuof length and weight have issued the following measure of 100ft. divided into feet ; the measure the formation of the Imperial Standards, and of as their first report upon the subject:1. The Commission appointed by your Majesty the measures of one yard, of two feet, and of one most important geodetic measures pendulum mea
of 10ft. with decimal and duodenary subdivisions ; standards which have been used as bases of the under date of the 9th day of May, 1867, for in- foot, with binary and other subdivisions. quiry into the condition of the Excbequer
sures, and other scientific measures. With this Standards, and for other purposes, included six
In measures of capacity :-Standards of 1-6th view, and on the application of the Astronomer members of the present Commission, cited by gallon and 1-12th gallon, as measures of the wine- Royal, chairman of the Commission; the Lords name in the body of the warrant of the 4th day bottle and half wine-bottle ; and standards of 4, Commissioners of your Majesty's Treasury have of May, 1868, together with William Earl of Rosse 2, and 1 fluid avoirdupois ounces (of distilled given their assent to the deposit in the Standardsand John Baron Wrottesley. Upon the decease of water).
office of various valuable standards and apparatus these noblemen your Majesty was pleased to A measure (with proper comparing apparatus) which had been collected at the Royal Observatory ; rovoke the warrant of the 9th day of May, 1867, /of one yard, bearing various subdivisions, has the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, in like and by warrant of the 4th day of May, 1868, to beon provided ; wbich, when verified as to its manner, have sanctioned the transfer of the Cape re-appoint the six surviving members nominated whole length and its divisions by the Warden of of Good Hope geodetic standard ; and the Secretary in the former warrant, with the addition of the Standards, might with propriety be used as an of State for India in Council has also sanctioned Reginald Charles Edward Baron Colchester and official standard, for accurate comparisons of sub- the transfer of the Indian standard. These standthe Right Hon. Stephen Cave; the duties of divided measures.
ards and apparatus accordingly have been lodged the Commission being defined in the same terms 7. The Commission, ohserving the extraordinary in the Standards-office. The Commission trust as in the former warrant. We have, therefore, attention now given to the metric system of weights that sanction will also bo given for the transfer considered that the new Commission is deemed to and measures, and remarking that an Act was from the Royal Mint of a large collection of be in reality a continuation of the former Com- passed in 1864 to render permissive the use of the foreign standard weights collected about fifty years mission ; and the details of the report now to be metric system, consider it highly desirable that past, and possessing a valuable though antiquarian submitted apply to the proceedings of both Com- complete representatives of that system should be character. missions.
lodged in the Standards-office. By the courtesy 13. It will be remarked that the Standards De2. We have held six meetings, and we have been of the President and Council of the Royal Society, partment has long been in possession of many in constant communication with the Warden of the Commission have been enabled to use the best antiquarian standards, and of standards of accurate the Standards, from whom we have received copies of the French standard metre existing in construction which have borne historically an several elaborate and important statements, which this country for laying down the exact measure of important part in the formation of the modern when more complete, we propose to submit to your the metro. The Standards-office possesses a most exact standards. The Commission regret to stato Majesty. The materials of the following sections accurate copy of the kilogrammo, verified by that two weights of the latter class, which had of this report are derived in great measure from Professor Miller, and transferred, with the sanction been transmitted under propor sanction for exhithose statements.
of the Lords Commissioners of your Majesty's bition at Paris, have in some unexplained way re3. On the condition of the official standards we Treasury, from the Royal Observatory of Green-ceived serious injury. The Commission are, howhave to report—first, that the Warden of the wich to the Standards Department. And the
ever, satisfied that there remains abundant direct Standards has, by use of the most accurato
Commission have taken steps for procuring com- evidence for the constructive history of the modern balances, and with the best modern appliances ploto series of the weights and capacity-measures standards, although they cannot but feel the imand methods, compared the official standards of of the metrical system.
portance of carefully preserving every representaavoirdupois weight with the gilt bronze standards,
8. The comparing apparatus of evory kind for tive (whether original or derived) of the national whose authenticity is derived from the Imperial making the off.cial and other standards available woights and measures constructed at the time of standards by comparisons made by Professor in the most accurate way for public purposes, and a great reform in our system of standarde, which Miller at the time of construction of the Im- the mode of impressing the official certificate, are
can serve to give collateral evidence. perial standard, And the result is that the under revision. Lists of the balances and other official standards of avoirdupois weight have comparing apparatus will be given hereafter in an above cited, the Commission desire to point out been found to be considerably in error, the appendix. deficiency of weight in the official standard of 9. The Commission are of opinion that stand- that a great stop would be madei n the promotion 561b. being nearly 12 grains. In view of the ards of every weight and measure represented by of general scientific accuracy by giving to men of magnitude of this error, and of the consequent the matorial standards now in tho Standard-office science, artists employed in the manufacture of error in tho practice of the Standards Depart- ought still to be maintained in the office. The scientific instruments, and others (on payment of a ment of the Eschequer for many years,
Commission have already indicated that the exist- proper fee), the results of comparison of their own regards the verification of local standards, it being series of official standards of avoirdupois weight character in the Standards-office. As standards of
standards with the standards of most accurate came necessary for the Commission to decide on ought to cease to be secondary legal standards as the course to be adopted in future. The Commis- soon as others shall be substituted for them. So this class would not be available for the official sion unanimously affirmed the following prin- far as the examination by the Warden of the purposes of inspectors of standards, and as there is ciple :
Standards has yet advanced, no other of the consequently no necessity for limiting the class of That it is the business of a Standards Depart-existing official standards ought necessarily to be standards so compared to the recognized scale of ment to compare local
British standards, the Commission express their standards with the
discarded. Imperial standards; the official standards being 10. The Warden of the Standards is engaged in hope that the sanction for which they ask may be considered only as intermediaries, bronght into collecting evidence, both from his own examina- extended to include every kind of standard in the use for the safety of the Imperial standards and tion of official and local standards, and from the Standards-office, and especially standards on the for general convenience.
representations of local inspectors and others, as metric system, the want of which is already exAs a temporary arrangement, small supple-to the amounts of error which ought to be tolerated perienced by manufacturers of standards, men of mental weights have been prepared under the in comparisons of different classes. A scale has science, and mechanical engineers. immediate superintendence of the Warden of the been formed for provisional use in the department, 15. As an important matter for maintaining the Standards, by use of which, in conjunction with with the sanction of the Commission, but it is con- high character of the Standards-office, the Comtho defective official standards, the just weights sidered by them as open to further correction. mission have remarked with pleasure the efforts are represented. But the Commission pro
11. The great and important duty of considering made by the Warden of the Standards for the pose without delay to prepare new avoirdupois how the Standards Department may be made most
formation of a Standards library. Many papers ments as to metal and as to form suggested by the Commissioners. As regards the principal object Society; others by the Superintendents of the standards, correct in weight, and with improve- officient has engaged the earnest attention of the have been presented by the Presidents and Councils
of the Royal Society and the Royal Astronomical latest experience.
of the Department-namely, the ensuring that no Standards Departments of France, Prussia, and the 4. Secondly, the Warden of the Standards has weights and measures, except th so possessing United States of North America. The translations compared tho official standards of troy weight reasonable and uniform accuracy, shall be in use and of bullion weight with the primary platinum for public sales throughout the kingdom — the of these, and compilations from them, made by the troy pound from which, in fact, the Imperial Commission considered it as the first necessary step Warden of Standards, to be annexed as appendix to standard of the avoirdupois pound was derived to demand information of various kinds from the a subsequent report, will probably be found to The differences discovered are so small as to re- local inspectors ; and a series of inquiries, approved convey the most valuable information which this quire no mechanical correction, and the state of by the Commission, was issued by the Warden of country yet possesses on the standard systems of these official standards may be considered generally the Standards to all the authorized local inspectors. those countries generally, and particularly on the satisfactory.
The returns to these inquiries have been received, regulations and working of the metric system. 5. Thirdly, arrangements are in progress for and, by a process of great labour, conducted under Other official and historical documents have been comparisons with their proper bases of the official the immediate superintendence of the Warden of dorived from other sources. standards of length, of capacity (for which the the Standards; abstracts of a large portion of the 16. It will be evident from the premises that balance-beam originally constructed by Captain returns have been preparod, and the work is still the internal business of the Standards-office has Kater for the same purpose will be used), and of advancing. Until this operation has been com- greatly increased. In addition to the large gas measure.
pleted the Commission are scarcely in a state to demands for the services of clerks in the formaOf all the existing official standarde a list lay before your Majesty any recommendations up- tion of the laborious abstracts to which we have will be given in an appendix to be hereafter pre- on the important points which will probably be alluded, and in the extension of correspondenco, pared. brought to notice.
domestic and foreign, a great amount of labour, 6. In regard to additions that may be required 12. The Commission have rocognized with great both meclinical and clerical, has been thrown to the existing official standards, wo submit that satisfaction the offect of the enactment in the Act upon the offico by the requirement of the rethe following are desirable :
29th and 30th of Victoria, cap. 82, sec. 11, romor ication of th ocal and official standards at In weights of the smaller class :-Standards of ing the limitations by which the utility of the stated intervals. Applications for increased perdecimal series of grain weights; and standards of Standards-office was formerly confined to means of sonal assistance in the office, made by the Warden the weights of the half-sovereign, and of decimal insuring ordinary accuracy in public sales ; and / of Standards, and supported by the recommonda
tion of the Commission, have been favourably beth was strikingly absurd and obnoxious, operat- they roso from 60 to above 100; and at the end of received by the Board of Trade.
ing to encourage perverted and fraudulent in the last year, under the old patent law, presented 17. In a late discussion in the House of Com- genuity, and it was only on the accession of James I. a total of 580; against all of which we find the mons on the question of introducing into this to the throne that patent monopoly was limited operation of the patent law of October, 1852, giving country the metric system, the Vice-President of to the "sole working or making of any matter of for three months a total of 1,211; next year, 3,045; the Board of Trade, speaking for your Majesty's new manufactures." Unfortunately, it was not at the year following, 2,764; and, in 1855, a total of Government, stated, as a reason for tak no im- the same timo required from the inventor to state 2,958 patents. mediate step, that the Government desired to wait more than the title of his invention, to which he The conclusions we draw from these facts are, until they should have received the opinion of this generally added an inflated statement of its wonder- that excessive patent fees are a serious tax on the Commission on the working of the metric system, ful properties. This lax mode of obtaining patents inventive ingenuity of the country; that it is quesand on the probable effect of attempting to intro- for inventions, which might be real or purely tionable whether any distinction should be made duce it in this country. The members of the Com- visionary, continued for nearly three centuries, and between large and small inventions so long as they mission have not yet had time sufficiently to ex- it was only late in the eighteenth century that are original and useful ; and, lastly, that patent amine the papers bearing on this subject, and the specifications formed necessary adjuncts to the laws require and are capable of being amended. Commission are, therefore, unable at present to ex- titles of patents.
It is very certain that patent monopoly has largely press an opinion. The Commission, however, are In considering the subject of patent monopoly, assisted in encouraging the development of an aware of the great importance of the question, we must nover lose sight of these progressive amazing amount of ingenuity in producing entirely and will not fail to give to it their early and care- stages, otherwise we shall continually fall into the new sources of industry, and in extending and ful attention.
orror of raising objections to patent monopoly on improving many old manufacturos. All of which we humbly submit to your Majesty. obsolete and admitted defective patent laws. From
Among industrial arts, husbandry is much inG. B. AIRY, Chairman.
October, 1852, the mode of obtaining patents has debted for machines which a quarter of a century COLCHESTER.
been simplified, and great facilities afforded to in- back it would have been thought impossible over STEPHEN CAVE.
ventors; the patent fees have been considerably to realize. And among manufactures, how many JOHN GEORGE SHAW LEFEVRE. reduced and made payable at three stages of the entirely new ones have arisen which we may redEDWARD SABINE.
term of fourteen years, amounting to a saving to sonably trace to the direct operation of patent THOMAS GRAHAM.
the inventor of 50 per cent. on the foos for the monopoly in the security it affords the capitalist W. H. MILLER.
United Kingdom, as compared with former practice. for the safe outlay of his money on what otherwise H. W. CHISHOLM.
It is now sought to introduce many excellent re-would never excite his attention, and most likely 7, Old Palace-yard, July 24.
forms to admit acknowledged facilities, and to only be treated as a wild, hopeless speculation. ronder patents less liable than they are at present Among these patented inventions we trace the to clash with private interests in similar property, large manufactures of Macintosh cloth, vulcanized
to be effected through the medium of specifica-india-rubber, gutta-percha, new dyes, felted carON PATENT MONOPOLY AS AFFECT-tions undergoing a thorough examination by an pets, gas, electric telegraphs, electro-plating, stereoING THE ENCOURAGEMENT, IMPROVE- authorized legal and scientific body of examiners.
type printing, iron shipbuilding, wire rope, railMENT, AND PROGRESS OF SCIENCE,
The sketch, although nocessarily brief, brings way bars and locomotives, alpaca manufacture, ARTS, AND MANUFACTURES.*
under observation-Ist, Secrecy in invention as one photography, paraffin oil, with many more, all
mode of securing to an inventor tho monopoly he springing out of the security given for the investBY MR. HENRY DIRCKS, C.E., F.R.S.E. desires to possess in the products of his own in- ment of capital in the working of patent property. VERY ERY early records exist among our State papers genuity; 2nd, The adoption of patent monopoly The vast increase of improvements in husbandry,
and scióntific literature, affording abundant under the existing law; and 3rd, The progressive brewing, dyeing, printing, electro-plating, metaland satisfactory evidence that men of genius and improvements in patent laws from the reign of lurgy, and other extensive operations, has called enterprise, engaged in industrial arts and manu- | Elizabeth to 1852.
into exercise such a demand for scientific and factures, havo for centuries obtained protection for Letters patent simply afford a monopoly in pro- skilled labour, that laboratorios form an essential their individual inventions or improvements of a ducts which are novel, useful, and economical, the feature of many large establishments to test acmechanical or other naturo, through the medium result of individual investigation, ingenuity, and curacy of production, exactness in important deof secrecy in their operations, or through the enterprise ; and of which the public, that is, the tails, to seize any accidental suggestions that may medium of patent monopoly.
We have thus the community at large, would otherwise have been de-offer, and to further scientific applications derived secret process of manufacture, which may confine prived. Patont foos are the smallest part of the from independent sources. The entire circle of the use of an important invention or improvement charges incurred by inventors ; hundreds, and arts and manufactures are thus being constantly to the sole use of an individual, and which may be oftener thousands, of pounds are totally sunk in improved, and scientific research materially upheld for ever lost to society on his decease, as indeed has mere experiments, and often when a valuable pa- and encouraged. happened. And we have, on the other hand, the tent is obtained its possessor may have to spend Still, there may exist individuals who seriously published process and public use, which an inventor years and a fortune in bringing the manufacture to believe, and that without the slightest bias from confidently leaves to posterity in consideration of perfection. Metallurgy abounds with examples of self-interest or disappointed hopes, or any flush of limited patent protection.
this kind, as does also chemistry, weaving, dyeing, success that renders thom independent of adNow, what we have spocially to bear in mind in shipbuilding and propelling, railways and locomo- verse opinions to the means that achieved their reference to these differently situated classes of in- tives, and, in short, almost every department of own rising in fortune, that all the encouragement, ventors is the fact that the secret invention is as industry. Who among these arduous workers improvement, and progress we have pointed out much or more of a monopoly than any patented would have darol thus to devote their time, would have gone on all the same had patent laws invention, with this single difference, that the one onergies, and capital to reap the cold and doubtful nerer existed ; and, in short, that all our distinmust inevitably revert to the public, while the acknowledgments in a pecuniary form from any guished patentees, from Watt in 1769-1785 to the other, whatever may be its value, is in a position body of manufacturers, however numerous and present times, would have laboured, and produced, to dio with the inventor. And indeed there can be wealthy? It is not in human nature to dovote and laid out capital experimentally and practically, no doubt that the advancement of many branches capital and ingonuity to tho perfecting of mechani-just the same had these patent laws boon abolished; of manufactures has been materially retarded by cal or other operations in arts and manufactures indeed, that Mr. Boulton would have been as socuro the discouragement generally given to secret in- without reaping a substantial benefit, arising from and as successful without as he was with patent ventions.
per centage of profit on the advantages gained by monopoly. Such reasonors always assume that Although, therefore, a patent is absolutely a à now or an old manufacturing procecs.
inventors invent from the pure unalloyed pleasure monopoly, it is ono differing in no important re Much has been said against patent monopoly on they take in reforming all existing systems of spect from an individual's right to the full, free, the ground of a larger number of patents being manufacture. Poets and prose writers may invent and unmolested possession of his monoy or mer- obtained for subjects which are pronounced to be with a view to fame and fortune, but mechanical chandise. He who can make two blades of grass frivolous, and of course worthless. Now, a stoel inventors, we are to believe, are men far above the grow where only one grew before has an inalien- pen would possibly come under this category, temptation of lucre. ablo right to produce double crops on his land and perhaps also a button, hook-and-oye, pins, In conclusion, and in contrast to any such idle without communicating his intelligence to any needlus, tapo, ribbons, glores, shoes, hats, nails, dreams, we have the facts before us that all the second person, s hereby to enable others not only screws, with others of a similar class. But most patents preceding the eighteenth century were to compete with himself, but thoroby also enlist the of these, like the sewing machines, require ingeni- secret inventions, although an inventor had it in co-operation of the entire farming interest in adopt-ous mechanism for their production, and being his power safely to communicate as much as ho ing his discovery. Such an one may, therefore, be articles of large consumption, not only is an ex- pleased to a manufacturer ; but the consequence takon as representing those inventors who work in tensive manufactory erected-one for pens, another bas been that few of those early inventions have secret and reap tho fullest possible benefit that for nails, a third for screws, and so on; but the come down to the knowledge of the present concan arise from their ingenuity and industry, al-working of the newly-patented article may involve tury; consequently, manufactures progressed slowly. though exercised on limited operations at a large an outlay of capital which surely deserves as much When, later in the eighteenth century, patents came profit.
protection as capital employed on patented engines, to bo fully described, enterprise and competition Now, patent law is based on the principle of con- steam bammers, and other large mechanical appli- gradually sprang up, until, at the present period sidering it to be of public advantage to protect the To some minds all is meretricious wbich the number of patents annually obtained has risen secret invention, whatever it may be, by securing they cannot immediately understand ; and if a nearly thirty por cent. on the amount of those to the inventor the sole use of his invention for dozen instances out of 3,000 patents granted in one during the reign of George III. Therefore, patents fourteen years, under letters patent granted by the year can be shown to be absolutely worthless, the aro decidedly an evidence of commercial, and Crown.
It is thus that patents aro now, as of old, whole fabric of patent law is decried on no better manufacturing and scientific growth and prospority. obtained on the payment of certain fees, and the grounds than the production of a fow exceptional A patent is the inventor's sheet anchor—it is his lodging of a complete specification (together with cases, than which nothing can be more illogical and mainstay, which the more we improve and drawings, if needful), exactly doscribing the nature, unjust.
strengthen, the more shall we advance the prosperity object, and mode of working the allegod invention The most cursory view of the progress of patent of Great Britain and Ireland. A patented invention or improvemənt. But the patent laws have, during monopoly shows how gradually it incrensed. Thus is for a cheaper article, or cheaper process, or an different reigns, undergone great modifications. in the time of James I. seldom more than from ontirely new and untried branch of industry. No The system that obtained during the reign of Eliza- 1 to 6 patents were obtained per annum; Charles I., patented invention makes any article of manu
1 to 15; Charles II., 1 to 6; Anne, 1 to 10; | facture dearer than it is at present, for it would not * Read before the British Association.
George I., 1 to 20; untis, in the reign of George III., I receive encouragement if it could be shown to bo