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Arrangement of Equipment Fig. 12 shows a rather complete and compact file in which the Tengwall binder has been used. The wall cabinets are made in units five shelves high, each unit accommodating fifty-five of the three-inch binders.
The table is waist high and is arranged with shelves which will accommodate two tiers of binders on both sides, one hundred in all. The table top makes it possible for the clerk to consult his volume right there, to develop the rate, and to replace the volume without loss of time.
As it stands, this file accommodates between twelve and fifteen thousand publications, and occupies a space nine by fifteen feet. It permits free access to the binders for a half dozen or more employees.
There is one objection common to all systems of tariff filing—the difficulty of assigning the right number of binders-or drawers or other units—to accommodate the tariffs of a given road or association.
Perhaps ten binders would be assigned to one of the larger associations or roads, but ultimately thirteen or fourteen might be required for reissues or additional schedules. In such a case, it would then be necessary to break the continuity of the numerical arrangement assigned to a given road, unless additional empty binders had been inserted at frequent intervals. To illustrate this point: The Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway Company tariffs would originally be assigned to binders 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8. Binder 9 would hold the issues of another road. Later, it might be found that the number of binders assigned
were not sufficient to accommodate the Santa Fe publications and their reissues. The overflow would have to be taken care of at the end of the series, in binders 301, 302, and 303. An employee in search of Santa Fe tariffs must then look in two places instead of one.
This difficulty may be avoided by employing letter suffixes, 10-A, 10-B, 10-C, etc., to accommodate the overflow of certain road issues.
Unless a generous allotment of empty binders is distributed thruout the file, periodical realignments will be necessary about once a year, until the file attains some degree of stability.
Advantages of Loose-Leaf Binder The advantages of this system are that it keeps the tariffs free from dust and in perfect condition, prevents the loss of issues, and enables the tariff clerks to handle supplements and new publications with a minimum amount of effort.
These binders are put up in various styles of bindings, and vary in price from sixty cents each to a dollar and up. They are quite durable and are designed to withstand the rough usage to which they are subjected.
SHALLOW DRAWER PLAN
In the shallow drawer plan, drawers are substituted for binders, and the punching is rendered unnecessary.
The drawers are numbered numerically, and the drawer number is used as the key of the index instead of the binder number as in the case of the Tengwall system.
One of the most efficacious devices of this type is illustrated in Fig. 13. The front of these cabinets is composed of sliding shutters of wood which are warp proof, and which are constructed to slide in vertical grooves. Each shutter is furnished on its face with a combination list and label holder that permits the change of labels at any time.
When access to any particular compartment is desired, it is only necessary to raise its shutter as high as it will go, whereupon it automatically latches and remains in that position, leaving the compartment open. A touch on the latch, or the raising of another shutter, will cause the shutter to slide down over the proper compartment. These compartments are practically dust-proof.
Disadvantages There are several objections to the drawer system. As the tariffs are removed from the drawer one by one, the numerical arrangement may be destroyed. There is also the possibility of returning them to the wrong drawer, altho this can be minimized by indicating on the title-page of the tariff the number of the drawer to which that particular issue has been assigned. These numbers should be large, and can be made by rubber impression stamp, or colored crayons.
Another objection is the risk of mutilation from the constant handling of the tariffs. Essential information may be torn out or obliterated.
The installation of this device, however, adds much to the attractiveness of an office, as may be seen from the illustration appearing in Fig. 14.
VERTICAL FILING SYSTEM
This mode of filing involves the use of vertical correspondence files. Heavy cardboard divisions separate