American Notes

Friday, November 9, 1888
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22 THE ELECTRICIAN, NOVEMBER 9, 1888 stautancously reversed in its direction of running, without the use of s\vitches or resistance coils, and the machine altogether seems to have many recommendations in the department of electric power. The pamphlet concludes with a descrip~ tion of the Westinghouse alternating central station at East Liberty, l’a., and with_some very interesting “bits ol' expe- rience." The East Liberty station has lamps running at a dis» tance of 4k miles from the dynamo, and the plant has a capacity of about 8,000 lights. It is stated that the permanent market for light \\'l\lCll is secured on the first canvass in towns of mode- rate size averages about' one lamp to each eight inhabitants, and that with the station running the demand grows steadily and even rapidly to a limit as yet undetermined. Other con- ditions being reasonably Qwourable, the incandescent light can compete with gas, and at a profit, it is stated, when the price of coal per ton is not more than double the current price of gas per thousand feet \\'hen no meter is used ; but with a meter and a motor service the electric current can be supplied at rates which, if met, must prove unprofitable to the gas companies. At the meeting' of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers at Scranton lust \veek, Prof. Elihn Thon\son’s pro- cess of electric welding was brought under consideration in a Paper by Mr. C. J. H. Woodburn, and the reception ae- eorded it was at once cordial and encouraging. Mr. Jerome Wheelock reported that he had tried the method on screws, and found that the lead of the screw was perfect without any change, while the strength of the metal at the welded point was beyond question as great as ever. Mr. Oberlin Smith had tried the process himself with excellent results, and said that there was not even as much fear of burning the metal as with the blaeksmith’s fire. It did its work more neatly aml uni- formly, under much hetter control, and with a great deal more elcanness. Mr. lt. WV. Pope spoke of thc advantages of the method i|\ setting up electrical circuits, and Mr. Woodbury mentioned a method of making electric welded chains by machi- nery, passing the rods into the machine, where they are cut, bent and joined, then welding the chain in a thorough manner, and passing it out at the other end of the device. Among other recent happenings of interest I should mention the lecture last week on “Electricity in Sea Defence,” before the Electric Club, by Lieut. Zalinski, and a meeting this week of the New York Electrical Society at Mr. Edisonls laboratory at Orange, N.J., when Mr. A. E. Kennelly delivered an interest- ing address on “ Electrical Measurements."

_20 THE E LECTRICIAN, NOVEMBER 9, 1888. Colmnencing at the bottom of the switch-board there are four rheostats, the two small ones nearest the centre being in the field circuits of the exciters. The general practice, ss is well known; is to provide. each dynamo in such a. station with anexciter of sufficient cnpacivy 'to furnish current to both dynumos. Only one exciter is therefore in service nt any one time. It follows, therefore, that tho governing of the whole station is performed by the movement of the handle ol' one only ol' the two smaller -rheostats, the other one being for the time out of service. The -two larger rheostnts are respectively in the field circuits of the two dynumos, and are used only when it is necessary to equalise their voltage for rnrying loads, which with well-designed lines is seldom required. The regulation of the station in practice is therefore reduced to a slight movement of the handle of one of the smaller rheostats five or six times in the course of a night‘s run, with one or two :idjustlnents uf the lurger rheustats to equalise pressure. V - Two small changing switches l\etween the rheostats are used for connecting either cxciter with either dynamo at will, and the single small siritcli innnedintely over them is used for coupling the Held circuits of both dynsmos together. \Vhen the switches are closed, as shown, both exciters are running connected. This urrangement of the switches, therefore, gives complete control of the supply of exciting current, and preprses for any ordinary emergency. . Over the rhooslats are shown four sets of trunk wires, each cou- sisting of two heavy parallel copper rods. Between each upper and lower set nre three changing switches. The wires leading to the middle connection of the centre switch come from the dynamo, whose current is, of course, transferred to either pair of trunk wires, according to the position of the switch lever. The two out- side switches of each triplet control the two lines respectively, and transfer their connection to either pair of trunk wires as desired. Between the horizontal sets of trunk wires there are placed-two multiple arcing switches, by which the two dynamos maybe cen- nected to run together or may be separated nt will. By this arrangement either dynamo can serve either line or combination of lines at will, and may be changed bya single movement without interrupting the continuity of the circuit. ' Directly over the trunk wires shown there is placed a row of six safety»catch holders, ench with double fuses and plug cut-outs. 'I`he object of these safety crutches is to protect the s paratus be- hind them from short circuits on the line, and the dinuble fuses provide a ready menns for displacement without interruption. _ Over the safety catches are placed four voltmetcrs each with its attendant compensator above it. Each voltmeter registers the voltage on its particular line, and the sole duty of the tender is to see that the needle on the voltmeter does not vnry beyond the length ofthe dotted scale. The compensator, which is sho\vn en- larged in Fig. 3, is in series with the voltmetcr, and adjusted nt the plug connections to the maximum number of lamps served from it und at a point-switch enclosed within its case ton. tabular number depending on the drop in the line. In this manner the indications nf the voltnietcr are maintained. correct for ‘all londs, independent of the varying drop i\\ tho line. Between such pair of voltmetcrs there is placed an nmmeter which indicates the output of the current from the dynamo to which it is connected, and below each ammcter is n short-circuiting plug, which, when plugged in, admits of the |mnneter,being removed. Over each ammeter is n lamp for the general illumination of the switch-hoard, and at the top is ai ro\r uf six small converters, through which the current is reduced for the voltmoter. Besides tho apparatus just described there are several sdjuncts to n central station, such as lightning arresters _and ground pro-' teetors, and ri standard roltmeter hy which those in daily use are maintained correct. (lur_ illustration (Fig. 3) shows the enlarged view of tho “ com» pensnt/ur” above referred to, und Fig. 4 illustrates tho standard roltmeter. As it is frequently desirable to reduce'the illuminating power of lumps on one circuit without interfering with others, such as in the sleeping apartments nt night, the liouse-regulator shown in Fig. hhas hcen designed. This is placed in circuit with each door- hranch of a house, und by setting the pointer, any desired nmount of illumimtion can bn obtuined without interfering with the rc- innining lumps in s. house. - ._ - AMERICAN NOTES. (vuuu olm own C(!Rl'lEBl‘0NI\EN'|'.) New \'o|u<,, Ortober LZTM, IRN8., The most importunt crcnt during this week wus tho holding of the Seventh Annual (fonrentiou of thc American Street. Railway Association. A your or. twmyngo-tlio meetings of. this body were devoted chiefly to thc discussion of the care of horses, fecd,- the protection of hoofn, the different kinds of horscslioce, the disposition of mnnurc, und other similar topics. llut non' tho fucc of affuirs hun entirely changed ; the \`otc\'i1mrys\|rgcon is- rapidly being repluccd hy thc mpclmnicul :ind electrical i engineer,thcfhorsc is inuking,way for thc culile und the elcetrie motor, und the connc1|ucncc is' that thc discussions no longer deul with the horse ns a noble xininnil ,useful to_ mun, lint nro largely, il' not wholly, ciurccrnod \\'it.l\ questions rclating th thc utilisation of mechanical llff\\`0\' and the care ul innclulncry '1‘hisyear thc'electrical'dolcgntion was so lnrgc`ns tn excite genc1'slconim_ent and attention. While the cubic onlne in for its share in the proceedings, it must be said that elcctricitv was

THE ELECTRICIAN, NOVEMBER 9, 1888. Q1 unquestionably the lion of the hour. Addresses were made by Mr. W. Bracken, of the Julien Company, on the subject of storage battery worlg, and by Mr. Barr, of Philadelphia, who had obtained some very satisfactory results there with 9. \Vhartou-Reckenmun car ; by Mr. Sprague and Mr. Mansfield, in regard to electrical systems _in general, and more particu- larly the overhead method; and by Mr. R. W. Blackwell on working with conduits. In each department material progress was shown. Mr. Bracken gave an interesting statement with regard tn the work done with the Julien cars on the Fourth Avenue-road, 'and convinced his hcarcrs that the demonstration there not only mcunt something for thoprcsent, but was destined to have a. great dcnl of inliucnce in the future. The greatest interest in this particular installation appears to have been taken by the street railway nicn, who recognise very for- cibly the fact that, uftcr all, the storage car presents the fewest difficulties in thc adoption of electricity for street car work in large cities. Mr. Blsckwcll's presentation on behalf of thc conduit was also listened to with ‘close attention, and from what was said by him it was evident that large advances have been made in this ticld as well as in the others. He made an nnnouncement, too, of great importance, to the effect. that the obstructions, legal and other, to work o|\ the conduit road for Fulton-street, Ne\v York, hnd all been overcome, and that work would be begun forthwith tn hiy conduit for that road, equip the plant, nnd hnvc thc whulc installation running before the new year. Mr. Sprague, ns usual, nindc n lively address, full of good points, on the subject of his rnml ut llichinond and cisc- where, and gave details as to a good deal of new work which he has in hand. Ho stated that the road which he is now build~ ing in the suburhs ef Boston for the West End Company, on tho overhead systcni, would have twenty cars und two tr|u:k»cle1\n- ing cars. The station would he equipped with 410 horse-power nf steam, und 450 horse-po\\'c\' of dynnnius. With that equip- ment sixty or seventy cars could he run, but only one engine would be started up for thc iuitinl equipment uf twenty cars. He stated that in RlClllil0l)(i tho proportion in the centrul station ufhorse-power per cur un the mud was “bout 5 or 5§ horse- power, and thut ut Harrisburg it ran up to about 6 horsefpowcr, which was u. good fact/nr for lsrgo roads, Init on smaller roads 8 to 10 horse-power per cur was safer. Mr. Spruguu exhibited nt Washington the new truck which he has adopted for his street car work. ’l`he new motor differs from the old Sprague motor employed for cars in being n single horizontal U-shaped niuchine, with the cores flattened so as to clear the ground as much as possihle, the lowest point being only 9in. below the centre of the axle. Rach car carries two ofthesc motors niountcdf an the usuid Sprugucjnethod, having two hearings on the cur uxlo, und n. tlcxihlc springcunncctinn with the cur hody. Pnwcr is trans- mitted from the nrinnture to the cur axle hy two sets of gcnring, with n tutul reductiun nf 12 to 1. No oil cups ure used nlmut thu niotor, ull the bearings being sclf~:»iling, nnml requiring uttcntiun but once u day ut lnost. 'l‘hcsc hcnrings ln\\'c ulsu n special dust-gnnrd nttuclunent to keep the hil fruni \\'nrking nut und the dust fruni working in. '|`hc whole inuchino und gearing ure enclosed in in tight l'l!U(l\l||_[l\ll\\' boxing which is uttuuhed tn the inubur, und xnuves with il. Ench motor will tukc xi stciuly loud of l2} horse-pe\\'er, und will work eusily up tn l5_ '|`hesu ne\v types nf motors und curs will he used, l unalerstund, in :dl the coming Sprugue street ruilwny work. 'l`ho 'l`honisun1 Houston Compuny had the iulvuntuge uf being uhle to exhibit. in Wnshingtnn is new electric milruad in full uperntiun. Under the supervision and direction uf (fnptnin Griffin, U.S.A., and Mr. G. \V. Mansfield, work on the road wus rushed through nt xi tremendous pace, und in spite of the hitcness of the date at which consent was obtained from Congress, which, us you pm- bably know, runs the city of Washington us n. sort nf pocket borough, the road was in rcudincss for the delegates to sue how it worked. ' One special feature about thc road is that over n long stretch at the beginning the poles are set right down _ the middle of a broad avenue, so that the hmckets canying the overhead wire stand on each side of the polo. At every third pole there are groups of inonnflencent lumps, red and white, which when lit up at night practically illuminate the nvenuc. This piece of work is reported ns qultc trim mtd luindsmne, und as being really un ornament to the thoruughfnre. Un unother portion of the road poies ure set on one slde, und the overhead wire is cunicrl on brackets; and on i\ third portion the wire is suspended down the middle of the road between two lines of poles. The rond is at present ncurly two miles in length, and is rapidly being extended. Three or four cars of the Thonison-Houston type, with twin nmtors, ure in opcruticni, and four or tive more ure to bc nddcd. As nniy he innigined, nll`this talk nnd~ cxcniplificntimi nf what could he dnnc made no snnill impression on the (?un\'enti