Barometer With Electrical Adjustment

This barometer is useful to persons whose eyesight may be defective; and is capable of being read off to greater accuracy than ordinary barometers, as will be seen by the following description:—The barometer consists of an upright tube dipping into a cistern, so contrived, that an up-and-down movement, by means of a screw, can be imparted to it. In the top of the tube a piece of platina wire is hermetically sealed. The cistern also has a metallic connection, so that by means of c

vered copper wires (in the back of the frame) a circuit is established; another connection also exists by means of a metallic point dipping into the cistern. The circuit, however, can be cut off from this by means of a switch placed about midway up the frame; on one side of the tube is placed a scale of inches; a small circular vernier, divided into 100 parts, is connected with the dipping point, and works at right angles with this scale.

To set the instrument in action for taking an observation, a small battery is connected by means of two small binding screws at the bottom of the frame. The switch is turned upwards, thereby disconnecting the dipping point; the cistern is then screwed up, so that the mercury in the tube is brought into contact with the platina wire at the top; the instant this is effected the magnetic needle seen on the barometer will be deflected. The switch is now turned down; by so doing the connection with the upper wire or platina is cut off, and established instead only between the dipping point carrying the circular vernier and the bottom of the cistern; the point is now screwed by means of the milled head until the needle is again deflected. We may now be sure that the line on the circular vernier that cuts the division on the scale is the exact height of the barometer. Although the description here given may seem somewhat lengthy, the operation itself is performed in less time than would be taken in reading off an ordinary instrument.


Fig. 7.   Fig. 8.   Fig. 9.   Fig. 10.   Fig. 11.

These Barometers, generally for household purposes, are illustrated by figs. 7 to 11. They are intended chiefly for “weather glasses,” and are manufactured to serve not only a useful, but an ornamental purpose as well. They are usually framed in wood, such as mahogany, rosewood, ebony, oak or walnut, and can be obtained either plain or handsomely and elaborately carved and embellished, in a variety of designs, so as to be suitable for private rooms, large halls, or public buildings. The scales to the barometer and its attached thermometer may be ivory, porcelain, or silvered metal. It is not desirable that the vernier should read nearer than one-hundredth of an inch. Two verniers and scales may be fitted one on either side of the mercurial column, so that one can denote the last reading, and thus show at a glance the extent of rise or fall in the interval. The scale and thermometer should be covered with plate glass. A cheap instrument has an open face and plain frame, with sliding vernier instead of rack-and-pinion motion. The barometer may or may not have a moveable bottom to the cistern, with screw for the purpose of securing the mercury for portability. The cistern should not, however, require adjustment to a zero or fiducial point. It should be large enough to contain the mercury, which falls from 31 to 27 inches, without any appreciable error on the height read off on the scale.