[D8733AAD], Letter from W B Vail to John H Vail, April 18th, 1887


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[D8733AAD], Letter from W B Vail to John H Vail, April 18th, 1887

Editor's Notes

Enclosed with D8733AAC. "Your last two letters received. The one in regard to grounds &c. The nature and cause of all our grounds is water; in all cases or dampness. ##The great trouble is that our insulating material does not quite fill the fill. ## It is all right if you keep the water away from it, or it would stand all right if you should throw water on it and then let it runn off and give it a chance to dry, but if the water is kept there by dirt or by a little hollow and does not run away, after a little whil the compound becomes rotten or porous, and the water gradually works down to the copper and forms a short circuit, when the compound takes fire and burns up, then the coppers drop together and make things warm again &c. &c. ## We had one section of a main burned up by there being a crack in the top partition of the box which was so small it had not been noticed, and although the box had been filled with compound and had been down a month or two, the water worked in and at last set her off. Since I have seen the deficiencies of the compound which from what tests we have made, I think it will work better as it can be applied in about the same way and will stand more heat without running will remain plastic in cold weather, is water-proof and if it should get hot enough to burn, which it would require a very high temperature to do, it would only take away its water-proof qualities and would not diminish either its bulk or its non-conducting qualities. ## After a while I will send you some and let you test it to suit yourself. ## After a while I will send you somea nd let you test it to suit yourself. ## This morning we received some papers from the New York office relating to the Simplex Arc Lamp and its use on Edison circuits and the whole thing quite well endorsed by Paine & Francis of Boston. ## Do you advise their use, and will you please let me know how you work them, as I see they only take 52 volts and in most cases we would not want more than one at a place or store, so could not run them in series, also would they pay at 25 [cent symbol] per night as that is about what we would have to sell them at." Marginalia by Charles Batchelor: "Is this so" and "How is this [-----]?"








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Thomas A. Edison Papers, School of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers University
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