Chapter 8 – NATURAL RUBBER
「I guess a refrigerator is impossible after all…」
Jin gave up on it. To preserve the food he wanted to make a variety of refrigerators, but there was not enough materials by far. It would be nice if there was at least a water type 《Magic Stone》.
「I was able to find a fire type 《Magic Stone》 probably because there’s a volcano. Which means conversely, a water type 《Magic Stone》 is impossible」
To begin with, it’s seems that natural water type 《Magic Stone》 are few in number.
「I might be able to make it if I go to the capital…」
Thus, for now he gave up on making a refrigerator and worked on something else related to 『Transportation』.
Jin decided that he would sell the manufacturing method for the stove to Roland. By doing that, the fire type 《Magic Stones》 you can gather at Erume River would be this village’s speciality, and it would give the village a source of income was what he thought.
Then the problem of transportation would be given to Roland to bear with his wagon. If it turns out costly, then he would have to have the fire type 《Magic Stone》 be purchased. In conclusion, improvement with something related to transport is essential.
（The capital and this place have a difference in elevation）
Based of the stories he’s heard, he guessed that the elevation of Kaina Village is approximately 1000 metres. Because of that, the village in the south is able to have a calm summer.
（Returning is simple but going out would be difficult）
The cargo would pile up on the way back down, so the journey would be difficult and because of that, they only visit once every two months.
「Ahhh… I want to develop a motor or engine…」
It would be possible at the laboratory, but it would be impossible here. And because of that,
「I’ll probably need to improve the wagon, huh?」
Having reached that conclusion, Jin began investigating for improvements.
「To make it comfortable for the horse to pull, bearing equipment will be essential.」
Was the extent of what he could think of right now.
「I’ll want rubber for the tyre. For that I’ll need to find a tree that I can harvest natural rubber from.」
When he took a part-time job at a camera shop, he heard a story about resin. A famous German cameraman showed him his camera, that he couldn’t collect rubber from the rubber tree, and instead he got some resin from the tree instead.
The bark of the tree in China could turn into healthy tea.
「This village drinks tea… that tree had white sap coming out of it.」
So he decided to examine it. For that, Hanna would know the details.
「Hanna, let’s go pick some tea leaves」
Jin called out to her,
and an answer was immediately returned.
So they went to the forest with a small basket.
「There it is, it’s this tree~」
The villager called this tree, 『Tea Tree』.
「Alright, let’s select and pick the fresh leaves」
There were a lot of trees growing in a part of the forest. When he picked a leaf, a thread of something sticky was left behind. This raw material would turn into rubber.
Jin tried to remember the features of the tree, so that after taking tea leaves and going back, he could return to the forest again by himself.
「I don’t want to take too much」
So as to avoid environmental destruction, he made a cut around the tree, tying a bowl to it and piercing it so the sap would leak.
「Alright, if I wait until tomorrow a good amount should gather up.」
He tried to imitate the collection of sap from rubber trees he saw on the TV.
While the sap is gathering up, he would go back to developing the bearings.
「Onii-chan, what are you going to do this time?」
Recently Hannah has been enjoying herself by watching Jin make various things with magic.
「Well look at this… 《Forming》!」
「Wow! It looks interesting!」
The lump of iron quickly transformed into a ball. There were 10 of them the size of a micron. Only the 《Magi Craft Meister》 could do it so precisely.
Magic to carbonise iron, it was Jin’s original. As a result, the regular iron transformed into tough steel.
Similarly he made an outer ring, an inner ring, a ball cage, and assembling it together with the ball bearings would complete it. By using 《Hardening》, the durability was guaranteed.
「What… is that?」
Having finished, Hanna didn’t know what it was, so with a bored face, she left to help with the preparations for dinner.
Jin wryly smiled and readied an axle of suitable thickness for the bearings to prepare a wheel. After that, he finished the day by remodelling Hanna’s bicycle trailer she used to transport water, using the bearings.
The next morning, Hanna came back from drawing the water,
「Onii-chan, did you do something to my bicycle trailer?」
「It was the thing I made yesterday. I attached that to it.」
was what Jin said,
「It became so easy to move I thought could I have gotten stronger? Then I thought of Onii-chan」
was said, with a disappointed but happy face directed at Jin.
「Well then, the natural rubber…」
After breakfast, Jin went to the forest to see the amount of sap gathered up.
「Oh, a lot sure has gathered up!」
The bowl Jin had tied was nearly full, so he moved it into the bucket he prepared, and the sap continued to gather up again.
「Now then, next is vulcanising, huh?」
Natural rubber is soft, so he heated it and melted it, then mixed some percentage of sulphur to make it hard. Although he called it vulcanising,
「I’ve only heard of it but I’ve never done it before」
He used the sulphur he had mined in his spare time from the 『Mountain of Death』 which had a plentiful amount.
「Guess I’ll have to go with trial and error」
So first he tried 5% of sulphur. The result? Too soft. Next he tried 10%. Still soft. 15%. It has a good feel. 20%. Hard. 30%. It’s no longer rubber. This was something called Ebonite, Jin assessed.
「Now then, what should I do with this prototype rubber?」
Usually, vulcanised rubber that is melted and made into a mould can no longer be processed. To shape it before vulcanisation is the theory, but this did not apply to Jin.
He made the prototype rubber into a ball. Of course it’s hollow. One big enough for dodge ball, one reasonable enough for hand ball, and one small enough for baseball. At the same time, he made several swim rings.
「The children would be delighted if I give it to them」
So he went in search of Hanna. Recently her shyness was completely gone and she played with the other children of the village. Jin went to the plaza, but saw no one there as it was hot.
「As I thought, it’s the river」
When he went to the Erume River, there were children swimming in the river as expected. Hanna was there too. That Hanna with a sharp sight found Jin, getting out of the river and approached him,
「Onii-chan, what are those?」
was asked when she saw the swim rings and ball.
「This is a ball. This one is a swim ring.」
「What did he make?」
「What is… this?」
「Jin-nii, did you make something again?」
「Jin-san, what is it, that thing?」
Not only the children, but also Barbara who was collecting fire type 《Magic Stone》 came over.
「For this ball, you throw it like this and catch it to play with it.」
First he threw the dodge ball at Kurt. The mischievous Kurt panicked but splendidly received it.
「Nicely done. Try throwing it someone else now」
「Alright, Mario, can you catch this?」
「Eh? Wait a minute… what is this? It’s really light.」
It was lighter than it looked because it was hollow. The boys immediately began tossing and playing with the ball. He then passed the handball to the remaining girls.
「This is a handball. You throw it, but do it like this with a thrust and play with it」
Finding a flat surface, Jin showed them how to play handball.
「Ah! Let me play! Let me play!」
The tomboy Jessie immediately jumped in, and although there were a few mistakes with the power for it to be sent flying, improvement was made quickly
Last is baseball… which wasn’t popular and was left alone. It was time for the turn of the swim rings he carried on both arms.
「This is called a swim ring, You enter through the centre and hold it with your arms. Then you can try entering the water.」
The children who played in the shallow area and couldn’t swim yet, Jim and Patty were given it, and when they tried entering the water,
「Wow~! I’m floating!」
they were very excited.
Seeing that, Barbara had an envious look. Which he then recalled to mind that last time as well, she was only in the shallow areas.
「Barbara-san… could it be that you can’t swim?」
Hearing that she became bright red, so Jin thought he’d make another one afterwards.