The Scientific American Boy eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 179 pages of information about The Scientific American Boy.
held by nailing the lower tie piece to the working platform.  Four stout spars were now cut, each about fifteen feet long.  Taking a pair at a time, we planted their lower ends firmly in the opposite banks and sawed off their upper ends until they could just be hammered into the notches in the king post.  This required careful fitting, but by making the spars a little too long to start with, and then shaving them down with a draw-knife, we managed to make fairly good joints.  A couple of long wire nails in each spar made the structure perfectly secure.  The king posts were now sawed off just above the temporary tie piece, and the permanent cross beam was fastened to these ends with straps of heavy wire wound tightly about them.  The working platform sagged so much that we were able to lay this cross beam above it.  From the ends of the cross beam diagonal braces extended to the king posts (Fig. 103).  Our working platform was now removed and replaced with the permanent floor beams, which were firmly nailed to the center cross beam and to the inclined spars at the shore ends.  The floor beams were quite heavy and needed no support between the king posts and shore.  A rustic floor was made of small logs sawed in two at Mr. Schreiner’s sawmill.  Light poles were nailed to the flooring along each edge, giving a finish to the bridge.  We also provided a rustic railing for the bridge of light poles nailed to the king posts and the diagonal spars.

CHAPTER X.

Canvas Canoes.

Like all inhabitants of islands, we early turned our attention to navigation.  Our scow was serviceable for transporting materials back and forth across the strips of shallow water between our quarters and the Jersey shore.  We never attempted to row across, because progress would have been entirely too slow, and we would have drifted down to the rapids long ere we could reach the opposite side.  But on Lake Placid matters were different.  Although there was no settlement near us on the Pennsylvania shore, to occasion our crossing the water for provisions and the like, yet the quiet stretch was admirably suited to boating for pleasure, and mighty little pleasure could we get out of our heavy scow.

Uncle Ed’s Departure.

Owing to a sudden business call Uncle Ed left us after he had been with us nearly three weeks.  But, before going, he explained carefully to Bill just how to construct a canvas canoe.  Jack, the cook, who was anxious to lay in a second supply of provisions, accompanied Uncle Ed as far as Millville, the next town below Lamington.  Here Uncle Ed bought five yards of canvas, 42 inches wide, several cans of paint and a quantity of brass and copper nails and tacks.  These supplies, together with the food provisions that Jack had collected, were brought to us late in the afternoon by Mr. Schreiner.  Mr. Schreiner also brought the necessary boards and strips of wood for the framework of our canoe.

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The Scientific American Boy from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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