Frank W. Powers
Visitors to many summer resorts and pleasure grounds during the past season may have seen a new type of bowling alley which seemed to provide much entertainment for the players. In place of the cus-tomary pins, however, were to he found swinging wooden plates which, when hit by the hall swung up and were held until again dropped in place by pull-ing a cord which released a catch. This arrangement dispensed with the necessity of constantly setting up pins, and permitted the game to be played much more rapidly than formerly, and so greatly increased the interest in it.
Fig. 2. A modified form of this game is here described, which adapts it for home use and greatly reduces the noise incident to a game of this kind. The expense for materials is small, as much of the material can be taken from a small packing case made of wide boards. In addition there will be needed:
5 strips of maple or birch 15 x3 x 3/8 in.
2 pieces 3/8 in. brass curtain rod supports.
1 small brass pulley.
5 pieces spring brass 6 3/4 x 1/2 in., and screws, sheet tin, etc.
The first work will be to cut out the pieces for the sides 19 in. long, 16 in. high and 3/4 in. thick. The piece forming the right side has an opening cut in the rear, lower corner, as shown in Fig. 3 to form an exit for the balls. The back D is made from a piece 17 in. long, 16 in. high, and 3/4 in. thick.
Across the top at the back, nail a piece, D, 18 1/2 in. long, 4 1/2 in. wide and 3/4 in. thick, and across the front a similar piece E, 6 in. wide. Also cut out another piece, F. 3 in. wide, which is located about 3 1/2 in. back of the front piece but is not fastened in place until the swinging pieces are placed. To this piece are attached the spring catches, holding the swings as shown at S, Fig.3.
Having cut off the corners of the swings G, as shown in Fig. 2, draw lines across the back 3 in. from the top ends, and centering upon these lines, fasten the curtain rod supports, R, with short screws, locating them about 1/2 in. from the edges of the swings. In doing this, it is best to place them upon the rod, as they
must swing freely. Holes are then bored through the sides to hold the ends of the rod carrying the swings, the front sides of which should be even with the front edges of the sides of the box.
To space the swings on the rod, cut four pieces 1 7 16 in. long from the wooden part of a bundle carrier; the kind used by grocers and provision dealers for packages. The hole is about the size to slip tightly over the curtain rod. The ends of the pieces should be smoothed off with a file, and one piece is put between every two swings. The pieces at the ends of the rod are 3/8 in long, which will space the swings 3/8 in. apart.
The spring catches are next made. The spring brass straps should be sufficiently flexible so that when the swing Hies up the stop T will be pushed back and yet return quick enough to catch the swing and hold it. On the lower end of each spring a wedge-shaped piece of brass or hard wood is attached, brass being preferable and wearing better. The upper ends are fastened to the piece F, winch is then fastened in place, the end swings being used to locate the collect position.
The release, L. is then made. It consists of a piece of hand wood 16 15-16 In, long, having a curtain rod support at each end and swinging on a rod similar to the arrangement for the swings. In addition is the lever M, one end of which is fastened to the piece L with screws, after boring a hole to allow the curtain rod to pass through it without binding. The release is located so that the under edge of L will be } in. above T, and the tear edge just touching t he springs S.
Bore a small hole at the rear end of the piece M for the cord K, and at the proper place abo e attach the pulley P. A stout cord, long enongh to reach to the position of the players is used, a strong pull forcing back the springs 8 and allowing any of the swings held by them to drop.
At the bottom of the box is next fastened a piece of wood, W, 17 in. long, 4 1/2 in. wide and 1/2 in. thick. Two pieces of 1/2 in. wood are then cut to the shape shown at V, Fig. 3. A piece of sheet tinned ir n 17 in long about 13 in. wide is then nailed to the pieces V and W.
Two pieces of 1/2 in. wood are then cut to the shape X. as shown by the dotted line in Fig 2, and a piece of tin 19 in. long and 4 in. wide is nailed to them ; the whole then being fastened in the space hack of the piece W, with the lower edge at the opening in the right side previously mentioned.
The portion of the back just above the runway just described is uphol-tered with strong cloth and cotton wool, and another piece of tin or a piece of wood about 5 in. wide is placed at an angle, as shown in Fig. 8, forming a hood to catch the balls and direct them to the run way.
When everything is finished, as above mentioned, a coat of paint or varnish is given the whole, and the swings numbered with large numbers at the top ends. The numbering is as follows: 5 3-1-3-5, 1 hoe outer having having the highest values, owing to the possibililv of not hiting any. The halls Used' may be of wood if noise is not objectionable, but cheap base balls will serve nearly as well and make but little noise when striking the swings.