SKOKIE 60076: JOE CUMMINGS interviews ELIZABETH CHEETHAM, Skokie Heritage Museum Supervisor, and tours the oldest house in Skokie. Across the street, interview with JOHN GROSSMAN, construction supervisor, about the newest buildings being built in Skokie. BIRL POTHOLE PATCHER: at the industrial reasearch park, BIRL, at Northwestern University, Evanston: interviews with the research team and a demonstration of the one-man pothole patching truck.
00:00Copy video clip URL Elizabeth Cheetham, Skokie Heritage Museum supervisor, introduces herself and talks about a large quilt hanging on the museum wall. She describes how it was created and says that the images on the quilt describe various Skokie history, institutions, and ethnicities found in the area.
02:30Copy video clip URL Question: Is it as big as it will get? Yes, for now. But there is talk on how it could expand as Skokie grows.
02:50Copy video clip URL Video drop outs.
02:51Copy video clip URL B-roll of the quilt.
03:09Copy video clip URL Elizabeth talks about a living historian who portrays Elisabeth Meyers, an early Skokie resident and occupant of the 1847 log cabin displayed on the museum grounds.
03:40Copy video clip URL Elizabeth mentions that the museum building was once a fire house and jail. She tours the jail.
04:40Copy video clip URL Elizabeth and Joe talk about Skokie’s first citizen, a bachelor named O’Brian. Elizabeth mentions a mock village board meeting from 1915 recently recreated at the museum at which was read the original minutes.
05:46Copy video clip URL Elizabeth takes Joe Cummings outside to see the 1847 log cabin, Skokie’s first house. They discuss future exhibits planned at the museum and Elizabeth mentions the museum is free. She shows Joe the 1847 cabin built by Nicholas Meyers and discusses how it was moved intact from its original site, disassembled and restored at the museum and reassembled. She points out the axe marks created when the house was originally built.
07:47Copy video clip URL They enter the cabin, recreated to get a mid-nineteenth century feel: rope bed, stove, herbs hanging to dry. Elizabeth mentions Nicholas Meyers made wagon wheels and sold them in Chicago. They tour the cabin: dry sink for cooking, herb grinder, cellar trap door, adjustable candle holder, spinning wheel (Elizabeth compares the raw wool with the spun wool). She mentions the candle dipping and yarn spinning programs the museum hosts. She mentions the cabin is in good condition because of its constant use over time as a home and a garage.
13:23Copy video clip URL Elizabeth talks about her professional history with the park district.
14:30Copy video clip URL Elizabeth describes how people lived in the 1840s, the materials used, the diet: pigs, deer, corn, beans, herbs.
15:48Copy video clip URL B-roll of the cabin interior.
16:08Copy video clip URL Elizabeth shows Joe the herb garden: costmary for insect repellent and medicine, oregano, mint, lemon balm, chamomile, sage, dill, chives.
18:02Copy video clip URL Elizabeth mentions that volunteers from the Skokie garden club planted and maintain the garden. Joe notes an old city limit marker.
18:47Copy video clip URL Elizabeth talks about an upcoming cemetery walk in period costume.
19:15Copy video clip URL Interview question: What’s the most surprising thing you learned about Skokie and its history? That Baby Face Nelson was found dead in a ditch, and the [large] number of greenhouses here.
20:19Copy video clip URL Joe thanks Elizabeth and signs off.
20:20Copy video clip URL B-roll, Elizabeth enters cabin.
20:30Copy video clip URL New location. B-roll, construction workers working at a construction site.
21:07Copy video clip URL B-roll of a dog in car, car pulls away, camera pans to the construction site.
21:31Copy video clip URL Various b-roll of construction site.
22:10Copy video clip URL Joe Cummings talks with John Grossman, architect supervisor from Levin Associates, about the Lincoln Terrace project and its attempt to revive the historic charm of Skokie while stimulating local commerce.
25:55Copy video clip URL John presents the printed plans showing the building’s layout. He describes the use of concrete footing to support the building, going down seven feet for solid ground.
27:03Copy video clip URL Interview question: What kind of companies are good for this building? Consultant companies, retail, bookstores, real estate offices. No restaurants. John talks about the community interest in this new project and the appreciation for revitalizing a vacant lot. Joe asks if the project received a tax break from Skokie.
28:45Copy video clip URL Interview question: Have you ever designed a log cabin? No, but I’m going to a barn raising this fall.
29:00Copy video clip URL Joe talks with John about returning to shoot once the steel and walls are set three weeks from now. Joe gets permission from John to use his likeness on camera and mistakenly refers to him as Jordan Grossman.
30:09Copy video clip URL Various b-roll of construction site without recorded sound.
30:38Copy video clip URL New location. Interior office building with workers at BIRL. At a large window overlooking Skokie, Jim points out various landmarks. He introduces Dick Johnson and various colleagues.
31:36Copy video clip URL Interview question: What do you like about your job?
31:56Copy video clip URL A BIRL executive talks about the value of the company: they don’t make bombs, they produce machines that benefit society. He talks about the history of the company and background of the employees.
32:53Copy video clip URL B-roll of Jim and videographer going into the electrician’s office and preparing to go down to the High Bay assembly area where the pothole patch equipment is being assembled. Interview question: Who came up with the pothole patcher idea? Jim says, it’s my idea. The highway research program issued a challenge for an automated way to patch potholes. We wrote a proposal and won funding.
34:40Copy video clip URL Jim describes how the idea for the pothole patcher evolved: a blend of robotics and automation. He describes the difference between hot mix and cold mix materials, the experiments and how they settled on a high speed projection process.
35:37Copy video clip URL They enter the assembly facility, the lab, and introduce the machine and its crew.
36:07Copy video clip URL Ralph, the chief designer, introduces himself.
36:48Copy video clip URL Chief engineer Herb introduces himself and talks about his role in putting the mechanics together. He offers facts about the pothole patch machine: holds a capacity of 8 yards of aggregate, 400 gallons of emulsion mixed on the fly,.
37:43Copy video clip URL Herb gives a tour of the equipment, a large truck, and discusses how the machine fills a pot hole, how it mixes rock and emulsion and projects it at 60 miles an hour in a self compacting fashion.
39:03Copy video clip URL Interview question: What problems do you have? It seems complicated. None. It’s straightforward and easy. There’s lots of computer technology which is more difficult than mechanical parts. The vehicle has a cab pushed close to the front of the CCC (Crane Carrier Company) chassis to make it easy for the driver to see directly in front of the vehicle, plus the vehicle has a short turning radius for easy maneuvering in tight spaces.
40:23Copy video clip URL Herb and the videographer walk up to the front of the vehicle where Herb shows the vertical cutter. He notes the driver can see within one foot out the windshield to observe the work done in front of the truck. Interview question: What is the miles per gallon? Six to six-and-a-half miles per gallon on diesel. It is an economical machine.
42:24Copy video clip URL Jerry, in charge of electronics, describes the control center, the system, the motors he’s installing and the software he’s writing as well as the differences and difficulties between hardware and software
43:35Copy video clip URL Interview question: In your office you didn’t have the lab coat on, but you do now. Is that a rule? No. It’s just a smock to protect your clothes.
44:00Copy video clip URL Interview question: What do you need to worry about? All the little details: how to sense the temperature of the pothole, the air around the pothole, switching between vacuum and blower, the temperature of the equipment, the levels in the emulsion tank, the temperature of the emulsion tank.
44:46Copy video clip URL What kind of car do you drive? ’84 Pontiac. Do you worry about hitting potholes? Yes, I try to avoid them constantly.
45:18Copy video clip URL Jerry says he still has more to do and shows videographer the heart of the system, the main computer that controls the machine. “You don’t get this from Compuserve.”
46:43Copy video clip URL Interview question: What other projects do you do? I work in a laser lab, laser glazing, sensory control, align lasers, and work on control systems for the Great Lakes Composite Consortium.
47:28Copy video clip URL Interview question: Are research scientists misunderstood? I don’t think they’re known enough to be understood or misunderstood. Who’s the most popular research scientist you know? Jim. He’s been in Popular Science, on TV, in the Chicago Tribune…
48:14Copy video clip URL The videogpraher mentions that the pothole patcher is a unique idea. It came from the US Government and was part of a road fix program.
49:04Copy video clip URL Jim shows the raw elements used for patching potholes: aggregate and liquid asphalt emulsion to create asphalt. He explains the cost factor and the spread and distribution of it.
50:20Copy video clip URL Jim shows a core sample of a road to show how a road looks when compacted and how the new machine makes asphalt economically.
51:00Copy video clip URL Interview question: What’s the definition of a pothole? A fatigued area in pavement caused by water and traffic. Jim describes how potholes occur, how the binder erodes, and how excessive traffic wears it down.
52:23Copy video clip URL Is there another material we can use for road construction? There’s talk of a plastic-like material to use. Today some roads mix concrete and asphalt. In the future the mix might include fibers and plastic additives.
53:30Copy video clip URL Jerry demonstrates the air powered system used for opening the bomb bay doors in the machine.
55:18Copy video clip URL The videographer comments to Jim: This must mean dreams can come true? Yes. The proposal was the effort of three people. Over one million dollars were awarded over a two year phase. We’re reviewed every six months, but we kept the funding and moved forward with a project commercial companies will be able to take to market.
56:30Copy video clip URL Interview question: Do you think there will be resistance from construction teams to this machine? Some workers will be displaced, but there’s other maintenance work needed to be done. We can now fix potholes year round, not just in summer. It will improve the lifetime of the road.
57:57Copy video clip URL Interview question: They put steel plates on Lake Shore Drive to fix it. Why? Lake Shore Drive has severe problems. I don’t think any patching technology will fix it.
58:40Copy video clip URL Jerry, the electrician, and the videographer climb into the vehicle’s cab. He gives a tour of the cab and all the equipment, monitors, interface computer, operation of the cutter, and how the ignition is started.
1:00:20Copy video clip URL Jerry exits the cab.
1:00:30Copy video clip URL END.