A NEW system of wiring up radio sets has been devised by a London engineer who conceived the idea of using perforated metal strips instead of wire. The strips can be bent and joined together at will, eliminating the need for soldering the joints. The photograph shows the strips being used in wiring up a home-made set.

COO-COO Contest Number 4 (Feb, 1929)

COO-COO Contest Number 4

Names of the Winners of Coo-Coo Contraptions Contest No. 1 and Details of Contest No. 4 are Printed Below.

LISTEN in now, all you folks who sent in entries in Coo-Coo Contraptions Contest No. 1! The winners have been picked and we’re all set to announce the names of the seven lucky contestants. Before doing so, however, the harassed judges wish to thank all the entrants in the contest for the ingenious contrivances which they submitted. It was a Herculean task to select the seven winners from the avalanche of submissions which descended on the editorial office.

First prize of $25 went to H. Palmer, 11548 95th Street, Edmonton, Alberta, one of our Canadian readers, for his ingenious cider press shown on the opposite page. We think you will agree with us that the press classifies as a Coo-Coo Contraption of the first water. Second prize of SIO was awarded Alexander M. Adams, 313 Reed St., Clearfield, Pa., for his nutcracker shown on this page. Mr. Adams’ contraption winds up to a snappy finish, the idea being, as shown, that the goldfish sneeze and awaken the squirrel in his cage. The nut to be cracked sees the squirrel and in a frenzy of fear at the proximity of its deadly enemy the hapless nut dashes out its brains on the floor—thereby accomplishing the purpose of the contraption.

The five third prizes of $3 each were awarded as follows: Donald C. G. Mac-Kay, Queens University, Kingston, Ont; R. A. Reedy, U. S. S. Concord, Charleston, S. C; Clarence E. Hill, Groton, Conn.; Paul Ranck, 1125 E. 16th St., Santa Monica, Cal., and 0. B. LaFlair, Box 3287, Honolulu, T. H.

Now that Contest No. 1 has been disposed of, try your luck in the current contest, No. 4, announced herewith. Prizes will total $50 and will be divided as follows: First prize, $25; second prize, $10; five third prizes, each $3. Contest No. 4 will close March 1, 1929. Manuscripts received after this date will be entered in Contest No. 5. The Coo-Coo Contraptions Contests will run every month until further notice.

Manuscripts will not be returned. In case of a tie, duplicate prizes will be awarded the tying contestants. Address all manuscripts to Coo-Coo Contraptions Editor, Modern Mechanics Magazine, Contest No. 4, Robbinsdale, Minn. Decision of the judges must in all cases be accepted as final. There is still time to enter your Contraption in Contest No. 3 if you wish; this contest closes February 1. Prize winners will be announced as soon as possible after the closing date of the contest.

It is not necessary to make a finished sketch of your contraption, although it will be helpful to our artists if you wish to submit one. Study the prize winner on the opposite page and design some device just as coo-coo and just as funny. Remember that the prize winners will be judged on a basis of humor and originality. Anybody except employees of the magazine can compete in the contest; it is not necessary to be a subscriber to Modern Mechanics.

“Wind Wagon” Made From Ford (Feb, 1932)

That used to be my nick name in high-school. I was a lonely child.

“Wind Wagon” Made From Ford
JOE BAIRD of Arcadia, Neb., got tired of driving an ordinary Model T Ford, so he got busy and converted it into the “wind wagon” shown above. The motor is raised above the chassis, the radiator turned sideways, and a four-blade propeller attached to drive the vehicle.



BEEN awarded a Golden Hammer Tie Bar you’d like to convert to a brooch for your best gal? It’s easy: (1) peel off the tie clip with needle-nose pliers; (2) mold aluminum foil around the hammer to dissipate heat rapidly when soldering and so protect the finish; (3) solder a two-piece pin back in place and (4) you have it. You can get pin backs at your local hobby shop or from Immerman’s, 1020 Euclid Ave., Cleveland 15, Ohio.

Automatic Cigar Lighter in Ornamental Elephant (Jan, 1932)

Automatic Cigar Lighter in Ornamental Elephant

Smokers will find this little elephant both an attractive and useful ornament for their dens. Pick him up and an ingenious switch inside him automatically turns on an electric cigarette lighter in his neck. Put him down and the lighter goes out. Only a few inexpensive parts are needed.

A Simple 2-Cylinder Electric Engine (Jan, 1932)

A Simple 2-Cylinder Electric Engine

by Sewell V. Lehman

The Amateur Electrician Department offers this month plans for building an electric motor of extremely unique design. Powered by two solenoid magnets, it will easily operate small mechanical toys.

FROM a few odds and ends and a quantity of magnet wire you can construct an interesting little two-cylinder electric engine that resembles a steam engine in its actions. Electrical energy is transformed into mechanical motion by two solenoid magnets acting on iron pistons connected to a suitable crank shaft.

Entire Family Builds Model Boats (Oct, 1936)

Entire Family Builds Model Boats

BUILDING scale replicas of famous sailing vessels is the hobby and vocation of Eugene Leclerc, a former sailor, who lives at St. Jean Port Joli, Quebec. He was forced to turn his hobby into a vocation when his foot became badly mangled in an accident that prevented his return to work.

The market for Leclerc’s authentic models has expanded so that he has had to secure the aid of his family. Now, all the older members of the family specialize in constructing parts.



By Robert Q. Riley and Dave L. Carey

WITH almost a decade of safety-and energy-conscious cars under our belts, we Americans have learned to accept the econobox theory of automotive engineering. What used to be one of our greatest pleasures—the car—has become a mundane, utilitarian device for economically carrying people and things from place to place.

New Uses for Old Fords Contest! (Jan, 1929) (Jan, 1929)

New Uses for Old Fords Contest!

MODERN MECHANICS will pay $10 for acceptable photos of every odd use to which old model T Fords have been put. The queer machines shown below are made from old “Tin Lizzies.”

UP IN Minnesota where the water is sky blue many sportsmen sojourn during the summer. These same sportsmen use motorboats and demand clear, weedless lakes from their hotel and resort keepers.

The Amateur in the Making (Sep, 1914)

The Amateur in the Making

By Walter Burnett

Illustrations by Kneeland L. Green.

WHEN Marconi completed experiments a number of years ago, which made wireless telegraphy practicable, an unbelieving world sat up and gasped.

The wonder of his achievement lingered in the minds of many for a few days and then died. In certain young men, however, it created the spark of ambition, which flared up into an irresistible desire to enter into this new and practically unknown field. As a result nearly every city in the country boasts (or tolerates) its wireless amateurs.