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drelectron

Need help identifying tool

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I found this post-15086-083344700 1285115772_thumb.jp in a wall of an old house that was being restored. Can someone please tell me what it is? It looks kind of like a nail set but I don't understand the hole in the end.

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I can't say for sure but it might be a "fid" for splicing cable.

Frosty the Lucky.

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Couple of questions... how old a house?

Where is the house?

Any idea what the main industry was at the time the house was built?

On the top tool does the hole go all the way to the point?

Both tools look though they have had serious hard striking usage, but have a thick coat of rust.

I am guessing and its a WAG at that, but a leather hole punch and a round nose punch for decorating

good luck finding out what they are,
Cliff

Frosty, It doesn't look like any fid I have ever seen.. looks like it has been driven too hard for that.. and the end looks closed.. which would not work for a fid... not that I am any kind of expert....

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It is hard to see this pic but I think it is a leather punch. Set it on the leather hit it with a mallet the leather slug come out thru the hole.

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Fids are wooden this could be an old marlinspike. Made of steel and used to splice wire rope.

Ted
Pit Snipe and former deck ape, USN, RET


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Couple of questions... how old a house?

Where is the house?

Any idea what the main industry was at the time the house was built?

On the top tool does the hole go all the way to the point?

Both tools look though they have had serious hard striking usage, but have a thick coat of rust.

I am guessing and its a WAG at that, but a leather hole punch and a round nose punch for decorating

good luck finding out what they are,
Cliff

Frosty, It doesn't look like any fid I have ever seen.. looks like it has been driven too hard for that.. and the end looks closed.. which would not work for a fid... not that I am any kind of expert....


The two pics are of the same tool, front and back side.
Best guess on the house was early 1900s say around 1910 and it's near Greenville SC.
The only major industry that I know of around here is, and has been, textiles.
Yes the hole goes through to the end where it's about 3/16".

I was trying to get the crosshatch design on the back of it.

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Mistreated wad punch for sure looks like its had a very hard life. (same as a hole punch for making gaskets etc.)

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Thanks for the help everyone. I never considered a leather working tool. I looked pics of wad cutters and found a modern one that looks just like it.
Now what would be the best way to clean this up without ruining the fine crosshatch pattern on the back?

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Fids are wooden this could be an old marlinspike. Made of steel and used to splice wire rope.

Ted
Pit Snipe and former deck ape, USN, RET


Fids can also be metal or even plastic. That tool certainly looks like a hole punch though.

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Fids are wooden this could be an old marlinspike. Made of steel and used to splice wire rope.

Ted
Pit Snipe and former deck ape, USN, RET



I only thought marlinspikes to be thinly tapered and make them thusly: post-7113-003735500 1285187911_thumb.jpg

Do you have any photos of some that are shaped like the one in OP's pic? I'm always happy to learn a new tool!

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I`ve seen them up to a foot long and 3/4" or better in diameter and made from old prop shafts of either bronze or Aquamet(stainless).Most of the old ones up here had a head on them like a caulking iron or a brick chisel(for inlanders)and a hole thru the shaft for a lanyard(for working aloft).
The reason they had the flared head was they were sometimes driven with a mallet into a knot that had been soaked and stretched so many times it was like a stone.

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Well thanks as always Bob, ya learn something new every day when you listen. It seems as little as one in a hundred people in Ky even know what a marlinspike is, but I make them anyway! ;)

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A marlingspike is basicaly a big awl. Some have a slightly flatened point. None have a hole or valley. Those with a valley would be a fid. The two tools are used in a similar way, driven by hand or mallet into rope or wire rope, creating a space into wich is inserted a strand of the rope being spliced. With the fid, the strand goes through the tool itself, with the spike, alongside the tool. I have made fids for rope up to 3" diameter. Never had to make a spike, always seemed to have one laying about when needed. (father was a rigger) With that said, I am sure to be making a spike soon enough.

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