A large number of replies have been received in answer to the editorial competition mentioned in the June number. Many valuable suggestions have been given, and arrangements are already being made to utilize some of them at once. Others, requiring longer preparation, will be taken up at an early date. We are grateful for the very evident interest shown by such a large number of readers, and our sincere thanks are given to those who have generously responded to our requests. The winners of the awards will be given in the August number.
One prominent feature peculiar to all the letters received in this editorial competition, is the statement that the magazine is " practically helpful " ; that the various topics presented in succeeding issues are completely and plainly treated, making the information given usable to the fullest extent. This idea is the one we have tried to continually follow in the conduct of the magazine, and this evidence that our efforts have been successful is especially gratifying.
In this issue we publish a description of a speed launch which will be of interest to all who obtain their boating recreation upon protected waters. The type of construction makes it particularly suitable for rivers and lakes, and the cost of building one is so small as to place it within the reach of anyone able to buy a light 1 1/2 or 2 h. p. engine. It can be built by anyone having ordinary skill with wood working tools, and provides an excellent substitute for a motor canoe, being a much more seaworthy craft.
For these reasons we would request our regular readers to call the attention of friends to this boat, recommending them to buy a copy of this issue of the magazine, either of a news dealer or by sending direct to this office. We anticipate that the edition will be quickly exhausted, even though we are printing an extra large edition ; so to insure getting a copy an early order will be necessary.
The constitution and by-laws of the American Society of Model Engineers is about ready for mailing to those who have made requests for the same. Some important changes from the origin-nal draft were deemed advisable, in the interests of simplified government. As during the summer, no general work would be probable, the beginning of active operations is postponed until the coming fall, when we fully expect to see formed a large and interested society membership in which will be of great practical value.
The "free" alcohol bill which goes into effect Jan. 1, 1907, will have an important influence upon the fuel market for motor cars and boats. Many important features bearing upon the manufacture and sale of alcohol have yet to be determined before it will be possible to tell how great a benefit will follow the advent of cheap alcohol. Motor manufacturers will have much experimenting to do to produce a motor capable of using both gasoline and alcohol to good advantage. Alcohol requires a much greater heat to produce a workable vapor, and motors using this fuel are run with very high compression.
From this brief statement it will be seen that denatured free alcohol does not mean an immediate relief from high cost fuel. The greatest benefit will probably come from a lessened use of gasoline in those sections the country where grain and fruit alcohol can be produced as a by-product, and consequently sold with profit at a very low price. The lessened sale for gasoline thus caused will tend to lower the price throughout the country.
One important benefit from free alcohol will be that farmers can, by distilling their own fuel, use motors for power purposes, and the farmer boy will no longer dread the wood pile and feed cutter, but become an amateurn egineer and have lots of fun running a small lighting and power plant.