In order to beef up her breakfast, Eleanor Taylor of La Crescenta has been keeping her eyes open for serrated grapefruit spoons , but so far to no avail. Can you help bring her search to fruition soon, or will Taylor be reduced to tears over a little squirt?
J. Bradford of Hollywood needs some assistance in getting a swivel steno chair repaired. Can we put an arm on you so that you will help restore Bradford to the chairmanship he so urgently strives for, or will he perhaps end up as a true "chairity" case?
Michele Mooney of Los Angeles has been tossing and turning over her inability to locate washable latex bed pillows ; she claims that the ones made of polyester become lumpy and feel flat. Can you help Mooney keep her head up, or will she have to keep losing sleep over all this pillow talk?
Don Edberg of Tujunga needs Vols. 4 and 5 of the "Report of the Presidential Commission on the Space Shuttle Challenger Accident," a report that seems to be already out of print. Can you help before Edberg has to shuttle back and forth to Washington?
Reader-to-Reader Help Line: Katheryn at (805) 942-1072 needs the record - and - playback switch for an eight-track Dumont combination tape player-cassette player-radio-record player ; the manufacturer has gone out of business. Please help bring the sound of music back into Katheryn's home. . . . Elizabeth at (714) 493-7835 would like pieces of Stangl Terra Rose pottery in the Tulip pattern ; the factory in New Jersey has not been in existence for many years. Please help so that Elizabeth won't go to pot.
Note: The Reader-to-Reader Help Line is only for one-time items and for products no longer available in stores. And you must give us written permission to publish your telephone number, so that others may contact you directly.
D. Peters of La Puente, who was looking for a candle-wax hardener, can take heart. Tim Corcoran of Lawndale and a Sunland reader both say stearic acid is the best product for stiffening candle wax; it is available in candle-making stores and hobby shops. Corcoran adds that, despite the forbidding name of the product, stearic acid is actually a white, solid substance that will not harm the skin, not even hardly. What it does is raise the melting point of the wax when it is mixed into the wax to be cast. This causes the candle to burn more slowly and alleviates the droop. (Corcoran should know. He says he used to be a candle-maker and has a Ph.D. in chemistry.)
Mrs. Gordon McFarland of Laguna Hills, who was looking for a zippered leather coin holder and for a zippered wallet with metal slots for change, should zip right down to the nearest Boy Scout sales outlet (they can be found in many good-sized department stores). Carver Jewett of San Jacinto says he has ordered the zippered leather coin case from the Boy Scout catalogue on several occasions. He is not sure whether that catalogue also lists the zippered wallet with metal coin slots, but it seems that it wouldn't hurt to scout around for a change.
More on removing rust from concrete driveways. Mrs. G. O. Erickson of Ventura says to mix four ounces of oxalic acid into a quart of hot water, brush this mixture on the stains and wait until it dries; then dust off the crystals and rinse off the driveway. Repeat if necessary. (She says the directions came from the April, 1987, issue of Yankee magazine.)
Herb Hain cannot answer mail personally but will, space permitting, respond in this column to readers who need--or have--helpful information. Write (do not telephone) to You Can Help!, You section, the Times, Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles 90053.