Rob, I'm tellin' you, it's a "topsy turvey". I've owned 'em. They have
various wooden bodies and good ones always had metal spindles. Usually,
they were pressed in rather than poured, but who knows what evil lurks in
the hearts of real "metal men"?
"Lloyd E. Sponenburgh" <lloydspinsidemindspring.com> wrote in message
It could be a top, that was one of my guesses when I first saw it, but then
I showed it to some top collectors and none of them thought it was one. I
just sent an email to the owner asking him to spin it upside down and see if
it works like you suggest.
The modern version is called a "tippe top", and it's one piece of molded
plastic. Google that and you'll find some videos of them in operation
(including one in very slow motion) and plans for making a wooden one.
Just heard back from the owner concerning the possibility of number 2093
being a top or plumb bob:
It will not spin at all, it is too top heavy no matter if you start it with
bronze tip down or up. It has no evidence of being attached to a string or
chain. There is a small indention on the top but it is not centered which
would be required for a plumb bob. It looks more like a small fragment that
has chipped out. The casting is somewhat crude and would not provide precise
balancing for a top. This area had a French settlement in 1750, Henry
Guyan, a trader used the river for fur trading.
The owner said that the metal is bronze but I don't know if he tested it
with a magnet to make sure.
No answer yet for this one but answers for the rest of the set have been
pivot. If it were steel, it could pick up magnetism when kept in a
pouch with the pointer. That would be bad.
Bronze would be immune to magnetism and I suppose corrosion. If the
point got dull, I guess a woodsman could hone it sharp for minimum friction.
I see what you mean now, apparently I didn't read your post closely enough
the first time. I'll pass this idea on to the owner, your compass theory is
reasonable but will probably be difficult to prove one way or the other,
which is also the case for most of the other guesses it. I don't think
we'll get an answer for this one but I hope someone proves me wrong.
Maybe I could make a prototype to try. A nonmagnetic pivot should be
easy. The pointer would be steel hard enough to magnetize. I'd make a
dimple in the middle with a drill or a punch and bend the ends down
enough so the center of gravity would be lower than the dimple.
The compass idea reminds me of the prisoner-of-war compasses that I posted a
while ago, one was made to look like a pen clip and I think the other was
just a small bent piece of metal like you describe. I'm sure the item in
question would function as a pivot but I wouldn't bet any money on that
Here is a home made version of a hole finder. There are commercial
devices similar to the one here. They come in standard sizes to
transfer hole position to overlapping sheet metal. I have a full set
for standard rivet sizes up to 1/4 inch holes.
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