For DRIVERS, MECHANICS & FOREMEN.
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A PRIZE OF TEN SHILLINGS is awarded each week to the sender of the best letter which we publish on this page ; all others are paid for at the rate of a penny a 446, with an altowance for photographs. All notes are edited before being published. Mention your employer's name, in confidence, as evidence of good faith. Address, D., M. and P, "The Commercial Motor," 745, Rosebery Avenue, London, E.C. 1.
On Saturday, 5th October, light your lamps at 5.59 in London, 7.9 in Edinburgh, 6.3 in Newcastle, 6.9 in Liverpool, 6.5 in Birmingham, 6.9 in Bristol, and 7.24 in Dublin.
A Steam Wagon Economy Device.
The sender of the following communication has been awarded the 10s, prize this week.
 " (Batley).—" I have been a driver of steam wagons for a number of years ; in fact I was among the first drivers in this district. I have been a regular reader of Tux COMMERCIAL Moron, and the D.M. and F.' page always interests me. I have never been a contributor, but this idea which I have tried might interest some of the readers of that page in particular.
"On nearly all over-type wagons there is a saddle tray to catch the oil from the link motion and piston slides. There are various methods of dealing with this oil. Some wagons have a tube to carry the oil down on to the road, whilst inother cases the oil lays waste in the bottom of the tray, and is then used to light the fire. Some drivers, I believe, save it, and have it cleaned and purified, but others simply let it overflow and run down the boiler sides, where it gets crusted, and is very unsightly. My idea was to put this oil to use as well as to carry it clear of the boiler. I had two small pipes fitted to either side of this tray, one at each end. I fitted these with a locknut top and bottom, as will be seen from the draw ing which I enclose [We have had this redrawn.—
En.), so in ease of a stoppage I could easily remove them. On the near side of the wagon, which had a lefthand steerage, I fitted one tube to carry the oil on to the worm bracket and worm, and the other to the steering roller bearing. On the offside of the two similar tubes I carried one to the front axle pivot and the other to the opposite end of the steering roller. The oil kept these parts always well lubricated, whereas they were only oiled previously at intervals. Of course, there was a certain amount of. moisture which came from the glands, but having the lock-nuts standing prominent in the bottom of the tray the oil was always on the top, and any foreign matter and water lay at the bottom and was easily wiped out."
A Simple Aid to Wheel Aligning.
L1903j " H.S.H." (Wood Green) writes :—" An important duty of the driver, mechanic or foreman is that of checking the alignment of the wheels of the vehicles in his charge. 'Without some such periodic attention wastage of tyres will be inevitable. The job is a simple one, but, like most, it can be even further
simplified by the use of simple aids. Moreover, the existence of suitable tools always acts in some degree as an incentive towards their use.
"Fairly inexpensive equipment is now supplied by most of the tyre companies, and should form part of the outfit of every garage where several cars are maintamed. In cases where there is only one vehicle employed, however, the driver will find it to be more economical to make his own tools. The accompanying sketch—[which we have had redrawn.—En.]---illustrates a set of simple clips for carrying the cord usually employed when testing for alignment of the wheels. Four of the brackets are needed, two of each hand, and they are made from 2 in. bar iron, each bracket requiring a length of about 8 ft. "They are used by being sprung into posaion on the wheels, -the large loop going over the hub and the small one on a horizontal spoke. The arm (A) will then, in each case, be on the same level as the centre of the wheel. The cord should be attached to these projecting arms, and adjusted until it is parallel with the chassis. The wheels mar then be tested for parallelism by measuring to the rim of each from the stretched cord." •
How to Refit Bearings.
 " P.V." (Lincoln) writes :—" When overhauling a petrol engine, and it is found necessary to lap in the crankshaft and connecting rod bearings. I find a powder which will leave a dead smooth surface is-a fine gradei.carborundum, which should be thoroughlymixed with thin oil. If a lapping tool be net aVailible, a satisfactory4substitute is F.F. grade emery cloth— also well oiled during use. The method to he adopted is to tear off the cloth in strips of about 11 in. in width ; a piece should be once wrapped round the journal and each end given a steady, alternate pull, working the strip from end to end of the bearing. When refitting the brasses, care should be taken to ensure the .correct amount of clearance, otherwise the bearings, will seize for want of lubricant. A good test for judging when the oonnecting rod big-ends are pro, perly fitted is to give the rod a short, sharp push with the hand, when itiehould revolve round its bearing for about l times."