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Thursday, February 24, 2011

How do I Change a Lathe Belt?

“I need to find out how to change the belt for a six-inch on a Sears Craftsman metalworking lathe.” The Newton Falls Public Library staff was unfamiliar with this type of equipment, but lack of familiarity does not deter us from finding information.

Audel Machine Shop Basics by Rex Miller and Mark Richard Miller and Machinists Library by Rex Miller were given to the patron. He really needed a manual, so more information was required.

Although a lathe is a power tool; it does not have an engine, so we were unable to use the Small Engine Repair Reference Center database to which the library subscribes. We expanded our search to the Internet and discovered that Craftsman metalworking lathes were made by Atlas, also known as the “AA” Company. This gave us the name of the manufacturing company to search along with Craftsman. The website Rexonavn.Com has a selection of manuals in pdf [Portable Document Format files which look exactly like the original document]. Our patron printed the information he needed from the manual to replace the belt.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Is There a Limit To or a Cost Per Question?

“I see that your sign says ‘Question? Ask me!’ Is there a limit? How much does it cost for each question?” To our patron’s request, the Newton Falls Public Library staff member said, “There is no limit and there is no charge. In fact, when we are closed, if you have a question and Internet service, there are librarians available to assist you 24/7.”

Visit Ohio’s online reference service, the Ohio Web Library at Click on Librarians 24/7; it will take you to KnowItNow24/7. Librarians from public libraries, colleges and universities are available around the clock to assist you using online chat.

Also at Ohio Web Library are statewide databases on the following subject areas: Genealogy, Magazines and Newspapers, Reference and Research, Students and Homework, Books, Arts and Literature, Business and Government, History and Biography, Science, and Employment Resources and Practice Exams. Newton Falls Public Library has purchased these additional databases to assist their patrons: ALLDATA automotive diagnostic and repair information, Literary Reference Center Plus, Ohio Capitol Connection, and Small Engine Repair Reference Center.

To make searching easier for Ohioans, there is a link from the Ohio Web Library to the state’s Ohio Here to Help website. From this site there are links to assist individuals in finding information about Money, Food, Housing, Healthcare, Education and Training, and More including applications for benefits and services. Ohio Here to Help has the option for users to receive notifications about job openings, news, helpful links, reminders, and follow-up materials.

The staff understands that not everyone owns or feels comfortable with computers. For those not having a computer at home, the library has them available for patrons to use. For those who prefer a little less technology, we have staff willing to assist them in finding needed information.

Friday, February 11, 2011

How can I get a copy of my birth certificate?

A frequently asked question of the Newton Falls Public Library staff is “How can I get a copy of my birth certificate.” If the question is asked by a patron born in Trumbull County, Ohio it can be answered rather simply. The Trumbull County Health Department in Warren is the agency to contact. The cost is $23 for a certified copy of a birth certificate.

We thought the question would be a bit more complicated when patrons were born out-of-state. While looking for vital record sites for each of the states requested, our staff discovered the website of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics, This has links to websites in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, New York City, American Samoa, Canal Zone, Foreign or high-seas events, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and Virgin Islands. It also includes how to locate and request copies of death, marriage, and divorce records. There is usually a fee involved in getting copies of records. We did find that the fee listed on the CDC site for a Trumbull County birth certificate was not correct, and it wasn’t until we reached the county’s site that we found that the current cost is $23. We confirmed this by phoning the Health Department. Patrons should take care to be in contact with the correct agencies when making their requests and sending money.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Is This a Rug Hooking Tool?

“I found this when we were clearing out my great-grandparents' home. It looks like it may be some sort of a rug hooking tool, but I’ve never seen one like this before.” The Newton Falls Public Library staff confessed they had never seen anything like what that patron showed us. The flat tool is made of two pieces of wood connected by a C-shaped piece of flat metal. The pieces slide forward and back, bringing a needle like implement over a guide. There is a metal eye at the top, which we thought might help to guide the fabric.

First we looked at the books The Art of Rug Hooking and Creative Rug Hooking by Anne D. Mather. Since neither had a tool similar to our patron’s, we went online to see if we could find any information.

Searching the words “antique rug tools” we found the website The Rugmaker’s Homestead []. This site had information about rugs worked from the back side which may have been made with a tool such as this. Punched or shuttle and speed hooked rugs were made with tools that “were called 'speed hooks' and 'shuttle hooks', even though the tip of the tool is a needle, not a hook.” When we searched for images of “antique wooden punch rug tools”, we found photographs of similar tools. Now that our patron knows about the tool, she will have to decide if she wishes to learn to punch a rug.