Mystery Item -or- I don't know what this is!

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by MadModeler, Nov 4, 2006.

  1. MadModeler

    MadModeler Member

    Hi there folks! I have this item I bought at a flea market last year and haven't the slightest clue what it is or what it was used for. An elderly gentleman suggested this may have been used on the railroad but was equally confused.
    The only theory I have is that this may have been used in coupling/uncoupling train cars. Otherwise, I'm completely confused. :confused: Here's some pictures of this. Anyone knows what it is?

    View attachment 31644
    Closeup of the handle
    View attachment 31645
    Closeup of the head
    View attachment 31646
    The whole item.

    Sorry for the picture quality. This is my first attempt at using a digital camera. We finally got the darn thing to download to the computer without shutting down the computer!:rolleyes: sign1
    PS. The background clutter is due to a fall cleaning project in progress.:D

    Attached Files:

  2. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I think you are right. It looks like the handle part of the cut lever assembly used to release coupler knuckles from the side, so that the trainman doesn't have to go between the cars to uncouple.
  3. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

    Why sure. Everbody knows what they are. It's one of "THOSE" things. If you're lucky enough to get another, you'll have 2.:D :D :D :D

  4. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I just took another look at the pic, and on second thought I don't think it is a cut lever. The business end looks like some sort of pry bar. I would guess it may have been used on ice reefers at an icing dock, but I don't know for sure.
  5. KCS

    KCS Member

    I agree with Russ. After remembering watching some video's of trollies and such up north some of them use a bar simular to that one to switch the points on a turnout. The head would be somewhat fairly thin to push inbetween the point and stock rail then levered like a crow bar sideways throwing the point. Each point had to be done by hand because there were no switch machines.
  6. Gil Finn

    Gil Finn Active Member

    Good post=======================================
  7. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    That's why I don't recognise it, we don't have ice problems here in Los Angeles. Yeah right, like I would know what I'm talking about on something like that thing! It does look like a pry bar of some sort, though.
  8. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    We still use switch irons in Toronto, but they are straight -- that bend at the bottom would make it awkward to put between the points and the rail.
    Could it have been use to pry up rails for levelling?
  9. cidchase

    cidchase Active Member

    Paul Bunyan hockey stick
  10. KCS

    KCS Member

    lmao Cid! Na 60103 I don't think it would have been used for that. I have a couple railroad track bar's that was used for moving track by hand and buddy are they heavy! That thing there is to small and short for lifting such weight. I could be wrong but that's just my $.02.
  11. MadModeler

    MadModeler Member

    Thanks for the replies folks!:D
    Forgot to add, the overall length is 31inches and the head is 4 1/2 inches long.:oops:

    And yes yellowlynn, if I'm lucky, I'll get another one and have 2 of those things! sign1
  12. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

    Now my beloved is the best wife and a patient soul concerning the dispensation of my hobby dollar but, I expect that patience would be stressed a touch should I ever part with hard earned coin for something I had no clue of. I even figure her to find a new creative use for it once I brought said item I might not find favorable to my cranium or my hinder parts.:thumb: :D
  13. MadModeler

    MadModeler Member

    Well, my wife was with me at the time and she figured $6 wouldn't break the bank. Also, we were originally planning to use it for the fire pit (thought at first it was a hand made poker) and when I was told it may have been used on the railway, I changed my mind about that. At least my wife's patience was not too severely tested!:D Figured I would wait until I found out what this is. It will look great in the bar I'm planning to build.
  14. MCL_RDG

    MCL_RDG Member

    Looks like a...

    ...boot jack to me.

    My $0.02

  15. Relic

    Relic Member

    I'm thinking it used in loading/unloading {in the white zone}of pulpwood. There were acouple of them laying arround when I was a lad
  16. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Just a guess, but it looks kinda like the tool that they use to lift manhole covers.:)

  17. KCS

    KCS Member

    I think we have a winner. Doctorwayne just made me realize that. It does look very much like the same thing they use to lift those heavy circles of steel off the street.
  18. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    I always used a pick to open manhole covers. We never had a "dedicated" device like that...

  19. jflessne

    jflessne Member

  20. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Andrew, I agree with you about using a pick: that's what most of the town maintenance crews use around here. However, just before posting my initial reply, I had watched a British mystery on the telly (damn contagious, isn't it?:rolleyes: ). The movie was 10 Rillington Place, and in one scene, the Bobbies were looking for bodies in a "drain". The tool that they used to lift the manhole cover looked remarkably similar to the object shown.


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