Not so very many years ago the publication of a book such as this one would have been an impossibility, as metal workers guarded their secrets with jealous care and would, under no consideration, give out the slightest inkling as to the composition of the various lacquers, alloys, etc., used in the manufacture of various articles.
The stride taken by analytical chemistry has changed all this, and recent years have seen publicity thrown on the ingredients of many components absolutely unknown before.
In the preparation of this volume I have freely availed myself of the vast store of metal receipts and processes contained in The American Artisan during the nineteen years of its existence. These aforesaid receipts and processes are certainly of special value to sheet metal workers, as they have at one time or another been asked for by readers of that paper, and in a number of cases the information given was furnished by manufacturers using the receipt in their business or by skilled mechanics furnishing a compound whose ingredients they had themselves worked out, these valuable data being first published in The American Artisan and never having appeared in book form until now.
I must also acknowledge my indebtedness in the compilation of this volume to leading American and foreign technical journals, notably those published in Germany in behalf of the metal industry, from whose columns I have from time to time clipped receipts, the cream of which is given herewith.
I would caution those attempting a practical application of these receipts to be careful that their incredients are proportioned with exactitude, and in case of a failure on a first attempt to make a second trial, as a too large or too small proportion of some ingredient or the improper manipulation of same can generally be proven the cause of failure. Experimentation with small quantities at first is also advisable. THE COMPILER.
Chicago, January 4, 1899.