Mystery Solved: September 2014 Mystery Tool Answers

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September 2014 Mystery Tool A

A. Unidentified. A craftsman appears to have altered this hammer, adding the awl for an unknown specific purpose. Stephen Clemens, Mazeppa, Minnesota, and Stan Seevers, Argenta, Illinois, believe it to be an awl for stitching items like horse collars. Photo submitted by Mike Philipsheck, Gold Beach, Oregon.

September 2014 Mystery Tool B

B. Portable post drill and portable hand drill that could be used to drill holes at a job site. Identified by Ted Johnson, Granite Falls, Minnesota; Gailey Henderson, Williamstown, West Virginia; Maurice L. Hooks, Silverdale, Washington; Ken Smith, Marshalltown, Iowa; Stephen Clemens; Jim Bolt, Corsica, South Dakota; and Stan Seever. “This portable blacksmith’s drill press (hand drill press) uses tapered square shank metal drills,” Maurice says. “One turn-wheel at the base positions the table and the other, near the crank, preloads the drill and is turned as the drill hole deepens to keep a constant pressure on the drill bit. A handy tool in the machine shop when items are too large to put into a standard drill press.” May be related to patent 1,242,029. Photo submitted by Larry Shulda, Waco, Texas.

Catalog illustration showing combination post-drill and portable hand-drill in use. Image courtesy Jim Mau.

Patent 1,242,029: Combination post-drill and portable hand-drill. Patent granted to Osmond A. Osmondson, Salina, Kan., Oct. 2, 1917.

September 2014 Mystery Tool C

C. Hand ice shaver. Identified by Gailey Henderson; Stan Seever; Ken Smith; Leonard Keifer, Gaithersburg, Maryland; Stephen Clemens; and Donald Sarchet, Tulia, Texas. See patent no. 1,155,663. Photo submitted by Don Wood, Danville, California.

Patent 1,155,663: Ice shaver. Patent granted to Joseph F. Lamb, New Britain, Conn., assignor to Landers, Frary & Clark, New Britain, Conn., Oct. 5, 1915.

September 2014 Mystery Tool D

D. Shuttle filler. Using this device, rags could be packed tightly into metal cylinders that fit into specially designed rag shuttles of Newcomb’s fly-shuttle looms. A dozen cylinders could be filled at one time. One cylinder full of rags contained enough weft for 14 inches of carpeting. Identified by Stephen Clemens; Ray Eserhaut; and Howard Brooks, Waterloo, Iowa. “Back in 1956 or ’57, I helped my mother and aunt make woven rugs on a hand loom,” Ray says. “This was used to fill a tube that fit into the shuttle on the loom. They would sew strips of material together and feed it between the rollers. When they turned the handle, it would go into the chute and into the tube. Then they tamped it down with a long stick. When it was full, they cut the strip and put another tube under the chute and filled it, until they were all full – or you got to stop for lunch!” See patent 1,492,032 for a similar device. Photo submitted by P.T. Rathbone, Marsing, Idaho.

Catalog illustration of a shuttle filler being used to load a loom’s metal cylinders.


Patent 1,492,032: Shuttle filler. Patent granted to Theodore A. Hartung, Austin, Texas, April 29, 1924.

September 2014 Mystery Tool E

E.  Paring knife designed specifically for use in the pear packing industry. See patent 1,907,582. Photo submitted by Don Wood, Danville, California.

Patent 1,907,582: Paring knife. Patent granted to Dean G. Ray, Woodburn, Ore., assignor to Special Equipment Company, Portland, Ore., May 9, 1933.

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