What is it?

I've been collecting unusual objects for quite a while, and several years ago I started posting them on this site as puzzles for visitors to figure out what they are. Most of the items are mine but a few belong to others, if you aren't interested in tools there are plenty of other type objects that have also been posted.

For first time visitors I recommend this archive for a wide variety of some of my best pieces.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

302. 7" long

303. Someone looking to ID this object sent in these photos, here is his description of it:

The outer part of the thicker cylinder is a sleeve that slides to reveal and obscure the two prisms, and there is a slot about 1cm long opposite the prisms' window, as seen in the third photo.

If you look through it from the prism window side (as in
the first image) you see, from top to bottom: whatever's to the
right; whatever is straight ahead (through the slot);
whatever's to the left.

The longer, narrower piece looks like it's designed to accept the
end of a staff.

3" tall

304. 1 3/8" long

305. 21" long

306. approx. 1" diameter

307. 4 1/2" long



  • 307 - An adjustable trammel point.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/23/2005 8:03 PM  

  • 304 - A SCOTCH fastener. Intended for wood repair.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/23/2005 8:12 PM  

  • 302 seems like an upholstery tool fabrication tool to press material into a channel.

    302 It might be a handle to lift or travel down a wire, but I don't see any wear in the channel.

    304 a staple for securing mitered frames, or wood strips.

    305 what is done in private is none of my business ¦;¬)

    306 a gold finger ring

    307 some kind of a drafting compass?

    By Blogger R.G.B., at 3/23/2005 8:53 PM  

  • 304 - Correction to my earlier post: Brand name is spelled SKOTCH

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/23/2005 11:18 PM  

  • 303 Optical Survey Target. Yeah its a SWAG but Dietzgen used to make lots of optical and engineering equipment. I suspect that this was a target for leveling work. Adjust the height of the staff until the red and blue split the level reference line in the transit / theodolite.

    307 Trammel point for making a compass out of a yard stick. Lee Valley, Wade Garret and probably the local hardware store will have these.

    By Anonymous Tony, at 3/23/2005 11:19 PM  

  • >307 - An adjustable trammel point.


    >304 - A SCOTCH fastener. Intended for wood repair.

    Yes, looks like there are different names for this one, my package said "wood joiner".

    >302 seems like an upholstery tool fabrication tool to press material into a channel.

    >302 It might be a handle to lift or travel down a wire, but I don't see any wear in the channel.

    These two aren't correct.

    >304 a staple for securing mitered frames, or wood strips.


    >306 a gold finger ring

    It is a ring, but there is something about it that makes it different and more interesting than most other rings.

    >307 some kind of a drafting compass?


    >303 Optical Survey Target.

    Yes, instructions for its use can be seen on this site:


    307 Trammel point for...


    By Blogger Rob, at 3/24/2005 6:34 PM  

  • 304 - one of my old hardware catalogs shows a cut with SKOTCH printed on the item but the catalog text spells it Scotch.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3/25/2005 8:20 PM  

  • No. 308, used in pairs clamps two "slats" of wood together at a specified length ... we call the result a "Story Stick" and use it for a variety of things. Usually the choice for comparing the lengths of diagonals to insure frame is square during glue up.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/04/2005 3:19 PM  

  • No. 310 appears to be a cone cutter for the end of dowel rods - similar to a pocket pencil sharpener but considerably larger.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/04/2005 3:21 PM  

  • N0. 311 seems to be a gromet punch for the older larger gromets that had "fingers" to fold over

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/04/2005 3:22 PM  

  • No. 313 looks like the "tool box" hacksaw needed to get in tight places

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4/04/2005 3:23 PM  

  • 304 SKOTCH Wood Joiner! My company, Superior Fastener, has manufactured these since their inception back in 1928. We still sell thousands of them. The word skotch was to denote thrifty as you could repair many things with this item. 3m wanted to call it's products skotch but that conflicted with our trademark so they had to settle for Scotch. Ever heard of Scotch Tape? Now you now the rest of the story!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6/06/2006 12:48 PM  

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