Rubbing the surface of an aluminum plate with a steel brush will produce a satin finish.
The claw of a hammer can be used for removing the insulation on copper wire, if not more than 1 in. is taken off at a time.
Automobile headlights should be set to throw the light straight ahead, not pointed down at the road at an angle.
Never allow lard oil to harden on a lathe.
A good way to remove grease or oil from machinery before painting is to brush slaked lime and water over the surface, leaving the solution on over night. After washing, the iron is dried and the paint will stick to it readily.
In removing grease from wood, common whitewash may be left on for a few hours and then washed off with warm water, after which the paint will adhere permanently.
When the blade of a favorite pocket knife, after constant use, becomes like A, Fig. 1, it is more dangerous than useful. To cut down the already worn blade would leave only a stump, but if the blade is fastened in a vise and the point B filed off until it is like C, Fig. 2, the projecting point A, Fig. 1, will sink into the handle as shown at D, Fig. 3, and the knife will be given a new lease of usefulness. ---Contributed by James M. Kane, Doylestown, Pa.
Fig. 3 The Blade Is Cut Down
The work of finishing a number of brass castings with flat sides was accomplished on an ordinary polishing wheel, from which the first few layers of cloth were removed and replaced with emery cloth. The emery surface of the cloth was placed outward and trimmed to the same diameter as the wheel. This made a sanding and polishing wheel in one. --Contributed by Chester L. Cobb, Portland, Maine.
An inexpensive method of preventing a chair from scratching the floor is to bore a hole of the proper size in the bottom end of each chair leg and then procure four rubber stoppers of uniform size and press into place.
This cushion of rubber eliminates vibrations, and they will not slip nor mar the finest surface upon which they rest. --Contributed by W. A. Jaquythe, Richmond, Cal.
When plumbing a piece of work, if there is no help at hand to hold the overhead line, it is common practice to fasten the plumb line to a nail or other suitable projection. On coming down to the lower floor it is often found that the bob has been secured either too high or too low. When fastening the line give it plenty of slack and when the lower floor is reached make a double loop in the line, as shown in the sketch. Tightening up on the parts AA will bind the loop bight B, and an adjustable friction-held loop, C, will be had for adjusting the bob accurately either up or down. --Contributed by Chas. Herrman, New York City.
A drier for footwear can be readily made by a tinner, or anyone that can shape tin and solder. The drier consists of a pipe of sufficient length to enter the longest boot leg. Its top is bent at right angles and the other end is riveted to a base, an inverted stewpan, for instance, in whose bottom a few perforations have been made to let air in. The boot or stocking to be dried is placed over the pipe and the whole set on a heated surface. The heat will cause a rapid circulation of air which will dry the article quickly. --Contributed by Wm. Roberts, Cambridge, Mass.
Split cane, used as part of furniture, such as chair seats, often becomes loose and the threads of cane pull out. This can be prevented by sponging with hot water, or by applying steaming cloths to the cane. This process also tightens the shreds of cane and does not injure ordinary furniture. If the article is highly polished, care should be taken to prevent the hot water from coming in contact with anything but the cane.
A very satisfactory repair can be made by using a good photographic paste to fasten a torn window to its roller.
The best way to make a tinted wall waterproof is to first use a material composed of cement properly tinted and with no glue in it--one that will not require a glue size on the wall. After this coating of cement is applied directly to the plaster, cover it completely with water enamel and, when dry, give the surface a thorough coating of varnish. This will make a perfectly impervious covering, which steam, water or heat will not affect. --Contributed by Julia A. White, New York City.