Sunday, December 26, 2010

Mystery Tool - Additional Photos and Thoughts


A few additional pictures of the mystery tool along with some new thoughts and observations. You can click on any picture for a larger view.

Full tool, with quarter for scale and a new angle on the "loop" to show thickness:


A close-up of the business end - note wear pattern inside opposite corners of the slot (which I think indicates it was used as some kind of wrench):


A close-up of the end of the threaded cap - showing what I previously took to be the initials "B.H." - although now I am not so sure:


My brother Josh thinks that this might have been some kind of sewing machine wrench for changing needles, which were stored in the compartment in the handle. I like that guess, but so far I have not found any supporting information.

What do you think?


7 comments:

  1. I think that some kind of a wrench, maybe an ancient tools for turning something.


    John
    Aoudad Sheep Hunting

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  2. It's way too big for a sewing machine needle. But the wear definitely looks like the tool was used as a wrench of some sort.

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  3. Looks like a bleeder wrench for an old radiator. Old cast iron water radiators get air in them, which prevents the circulation of hot water, so there's a valve at the top which you open up to let the air out. Steam radiators I'm not as familiar with, but it'd be nice to have a wooden handle to bleed water out of them if need be.

    --Anonymous Comment-Leaving Person

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  4. A picture of the inside of the compartment and cap, could show wear patterns due to its content. Needles for example should have left specific marks.

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  5. Dan,
    It seems to be a wrench -or it was at least used as one. The distinct wear pattern in two diagonally opposed inside corners seems to suggest that.
    I wonder if it is a wrench for an awl. Some older leather working awls have a split chuck with a tightening screw that probably fits the opening in your tool. Another thing I noticed is that the bulbous handle is similar to the type of awl that has that type of a split chuck.
    Take a look at some in the top row of this picture:
    http://www.worthpoint.com/pmimages/images1/1/0307/06/1_a4394b6d90b9eee18a45edf7a6f6f6a8.jpg

    But I could be completely wrong.

    Alfred

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  6. Looks to be about the right size for a zither pin wrench. There was a wide variety of stringed instruments around the turn of the century that used zither pins as tuners. A tuning wrench is needed to turn the pins to tune. Not sure why it would have a hollow handle. The shape of the wrench opening would work perfect for the rectangular or square head of a zither pin.

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  7. Great ideas everyone! Alfred, you got it! Thanks!

    See the next post for the wrap-up.

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