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Contributions from Drivers and Mechanics.

2nd September 1909
Page 18
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Page 18, 2nd September 1909 — Contributions from Drivers and Mechanics.
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Which of the following most accurately describes the problem?

Keywords : Coupes

Ten Shillings Weekly for the Best Communication Received, and One Penny a Line of ten words for anything else published.

Drivers of commercial motor vehicles and tractors, and mechanics and foremen of garages or shops, are invited to send short contributions on any subject which is likely to Prove oi interest to our readers. Long and baccessful runs ; services with no "lost journeys" ; workshop tips and smart repairs : all are suitable subjects. Send a post-card, or a letter, or a sketch to us—no matter how short, or how written, or how worded. We will "knock it into shape" before publication. When writing you must mention your employer's name as a guarantee of bona fides (not for publication), and you should state whether you wish your own name, or initials only, to be published. Payment will be made immediately after publication. Address your letters to 1 he Editor," THE COMMERCIAL

Moms," 7 15, Rosebery A venue, London, E.C.

Will the writer of the letter re the performance of a " Karrier " car send his name and address in confidence? Otherwise, we cannot consider his contribution.

Drivers' and Mechanics' Insurance.

575] S. Bristowe (Chepstow), J. R. Frampton (Nottingham), P. Matthieu (Rouen), L. Pitman (Fratton), D. R. Simes (Thornton Heath) and others :—Tnn COMMERCIAL MOTOR Drivers' Insurance Policy may be taken out by mechanics and garage workmen, who are not actually engaged in driving the vehicles in connection with which they are employed, providing that a declaration be made as to the actual nature of their employment at the time the proposal form is filled in.

The C.M.U.A. Drivers' Prize.

[576] R. COSSINGE (Lewisham) and others z—In reply to your queries with regard to entry for the Drivers' Prize of the Annual Parade of the Commercial Motor Users' Association, we have to state that this matter was carefully discussed during yesterday's meeting of the Committee of the Association ; the date and other particulars will then be fixed, and full particulars will be available in our next issue. It is probable that the Parade will take place towards the end of October, and that the conditions for the entry of drivers and their vehicles will, in the main, resemble those which were found to be so satisfactory last year. The marking scale will be modified.

Not Culled from Contemporaries.

[577] R. S. SNELLING (Reading):—We are obliged to you for the copy of the book which you kindly send to us, together with your suggestion that we should extract some of the mechanics' tips contained there, for inclusion in our " D. and M." columns. It may interest you to know that all the communications published on this page weekly are original contributions from our driver and mechanic readers. Our chief object is to give publicity to the actual experiences and suggestions of our readers, and this would not be served were we content to rehash matter of a, similar kind, which has already appeared in so-called technical manuals. When our readers show any disposition to neglect the opportunity we offer them on this page, then, and then only, shall we consider the advisability of looking to other sources for our weekly supply of interesting paragraphs and sketches for our " D. and M." columns. Thanks. however, for -our suggestion, which was, no doubt, intended to benefit us.

" The Piece of Pipe" as a Jet.

The sender of the following communication has been awarded the 10s. prize this week.

[578] " J.B.W." (Cardiff) is responsible for the following contribution :—" I am sending you an account of a temporary repair which I carried out under difficulties, and which, though simple enough in itself, is, I believe, original; a description of it may prove useful to others. I was driving a four-cylinder, 16 h.p. car, fitted with a carburetter which had a single jet; this became choked, so I took it out and cleaned it, but in replacing it in the carburetter, while I was tightening it down, I had the misfortune to break it off close to the root of the thread. I felt myself completely 'in the pot.' I was by myself on a lonely country road, several miles from the nearest place where I was likely to obtain a new jet, and, upon counting up, I found that I possessed, besides a disabled car, sevenpence halfpenny in copper, a wooden tobacco pipe, half filled, and an old knife. I sat down by the hedge-side, lighted up the pipe, and tried to think out what was best to do. Suddenly I received an inspiration and, showering blessings on the memory of Sir Walter Raleigh, I jumped up and commenced operations at once.

" With the tang end of a file, I extracted the broken screwed part of the jet from the carburetter, and, placing the broken parts together, I measured off their length along the stem of the tobacco pipe, filed a notch around it and broke it off. I then filed down the stem at one end and, with my knife, I cut a rough thread on it. I inserted this in the hole which took the jet, and, by using great care and patience, I managed to fix it upright at just the right height for the petrol level.

" Upon starting up, I found the engine did not pull well--owing to the hole in the pipe stem being too large; the engine was evidently getting too rich a mixture. T was, however, able to get the car along so well that I finished the journey, about 16 miles, without further mishap.

" I enclose a rough sketch, which I hope will make my description clear." [We have had the sketch redrawn.—En.]

AD river's Complaint Against Manufacturers.

[579] A plea for considerate treatment on the part of makers is contained in the letter from " YORKSHIRE11 AN " (Halifax) which we publish below ;—" I trust you will excuse my writing to you re the unfairness with which some wagon builders treat the drivers of their models of machines. I am driving a — steam wagon—a very good make—for a furniture remover, and we travel over a radius of 100 miles from our place as a centre. A short time ago I had to ask my employer to get me a tube expander, as I had some tubes leaking. He wrote to the maker for one, and they told him that the only cause of the tubes' leaking must be running with the firebox door open. They would allow nothing for the action of the different sorts of water and of dirty water on the tubes. Any driver who works for a removal contractor knows that we have to take water from duck ponds, stagnant pools on the moors, canals and any old place, especially in a strange part of the country. The poor driver, nevertheless, gets all the blame from this particular firm.

" I, on another occasion, asked the governor to write to these people about the rims of the driving wheels which cracked. They are cast-steel rims, riveted to the spokes, and cross plates are riveted to the rims. The rims, I found, were cracking in all directions. The answer we got, however, was: 'We cannot be responsible for the reckless way in which your driver must handle the machine or for the speed at which he runs.' I may say that we do a lot of running in Yorkshire and Lancashire, and anybody, who owns or drives a motor wagon in the counties named, knows that the Police pay us far too much attention to allow us to exceed the limit of :5 m.p.h., which is what the machines are built to do. The makers told my governor, when he wrote to them, that they had

had no complaints about the wheels except from us. I personally know of, at least, eight owners who have done away with the steel wheels and who now fit Stagg and Robson's pattern, or who shortly intend to fit them.

" Only last week one of the main-frame channel irons cracked in two over a driving wheel, and, when the makers were written to, they said they could not be responsible for the way in which the driver loaded the wagon. By far the greatest portion of the platform is aft of the driving axle, and I have seen several wagons of the same make dipping down from the back axle, at the rear of the wagon, to an alarming degree.

"I do not wish to say anything disrespectful of the manufacturers, who have their business to uphold, hut I certainly think that they should allow a little consideration for weak places and for circumstances which are unavoidable from a driver's point of view.

" I understand that I am not the only driver who has had all the blame to take from this particular maker. Wagon drivers, of course, talk to each other, when they get together.

" Just one or two words, in conclusion, re spiteful drivers. I know of one wagon on which, in order to pay the maker out for blaming him wrongly, the driver, when he left the job, went to the trouble of tightening up everything possible; glands, crank keys, bracket wedges, and so on. If the next driver, who took on, had not been a really-good man, and well up to the work, there might have been an accident of a rather-alarming nature. I would like to see such men severely punished who do damage to their employers' machines. I, personally, am a trades' unionist of 16 years' standing and have never had any bother with my employers. I believe I could go back to any of them if they had a vacancy."

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