The principal part of the trap is now made, but what remains to be done is of great importance. The “spindle” is a necessary feature in nearly all traps, and the box-trap is useless without it. In this case it should consist merely of a round stick of about the thickness of a lead pencil, and we will say, 7 or 8 in. in length. One end should be pointed and the other should have a small notch cut in it, as seen in the separate drawing of the stick. The spindle being ready, we must have some place to put it. Another hole should be bored through the middle of the high end piece, and about 4 in. from the bottom. This hole should be large enough to allow the spindle to pass easily through it. If our directions have been carefully followed, the result will now show a complete, closefitting trap.
In setting the trap there are two methods commonly employed, as shown at a and b. The string, in either case, must be fastened to the end of the lid.
In the first instance (a) the lid is raised and made fast by the brace, holding itself beneath the tip of the projecting spindle, and a nail or plug driven into the wood by the side of the hole. [Page 105] Of course, when the spindle is drawn or moved from the inside the brace will be let loose and the lid will drop.
In the other method (b) the spindle is longer, and projects several inches on the outside of the hole. The brace is also longer, and catches itself in the notch on the end of the spindle, and another slight notch in the board, a few inches above the hole.
When the bait is touched from the inside, the brace easily flies out and the lid falls, securing its victim. Either way is sure to succeed, but if there is any preference it is for the former (a). It is a wise plan to have a few holes through the trap in different places, to allow for ventilation, and it may be found necessary to line the cracks with tin, as sometimes the enclosed creature might otherwise gnaw through and make its escape. If there is danger of the lid not closing tightly when sprung, a stone may be fastened upon it to insure that result.
This trap is usually set for rabbits, and these dimensions are especially calculated with that idea. Rabbits abound in all our woods and thickets, and may be attracted by various baits. An apple is most generally used. The box-trap may be made of smaller dimensions, and set in trees for squirrels with very good success.
There is still another well known form of this trap represented in the tail piece at the end of this section. The box is first constructed of the shape already given, only having the lid piece [Page 106] nailed firmly in the top of the box. The tall end piece is also done away with. The whole thing thus representing a simple oblong box with one end open. Two slender cleats should be nailed on each side of this opening, on the interior of the box, to form a