Now, What Do We Have Here?

2-3′ yellow waxy lump with holes in it

A: Probably paraffin, washes up sometimes from cargo ships dumping their holds apparently.

Some sort of magnifying glass my dad found at a boot sale for 50p

A: This is from a very large photographic enlarger. This one was used in an enlarger that was mounted sideways on a cart that was on tracks and projected onto a wall. When I worked on one of these, the biggest photo I printed was 6′ x 24′. I even kept an old lens that was used. These would be swapped out for different sizes to project 8″x10″ or 4″x5″ negatives or slides.

Found in a field near Didcot (UK) amongst large amounts of potential Victorian and Medieval pottery.

A: Its part of a cribbage scoring board. Just adding a tad – Crib is C 1650 onwards in the UK, so that’s not medieval – its probably early victorian, possibly a bit earlier still. Nice find!

What is this? I found it in a vintage shop in the kitchen area. Somebody told me it’s for cheese.

A: Feuerzange which holds the sugar cone used in making Feuerzangenbowle, German fire punch.

Iron, both found in the East Midlands UK

A: For the Midlands, Iron Age cloak pins may be more zebra than horse. Parts of the East Mids were known for domestic nail-making.

What is this? Found on a beach.

A: If there is air inside, it could be a swim bladder that somehow made it intact out of a carcass.

We found this large lid-like item north of Ponderosa, NM, in the national forest. Person in there for scale. The two openings showed us that it was sitting over a shallow pit, and not affixed. Looks to be made of fiberglass. We call it the “UFO”, but we are still wondering…

A: Looks like the storage and drinking portion of a guzzler system for wildlife.

Can you make out what this lapel pin is? A boat? An engine? A city? No one here can agree!

A: It is a Pratt and whitney PT6T Twin pac

What are these fiberous tabs in a sealed package?

A: They kind of look like anti-fog inserts for Go Pro waterproof housing.

Blue metal posts, about 2 feet tall, with locks placed all around this open park near the waterfront in Toronto, ON, Canada.

A: They are water test bores. When the padlock is removed the top tilts back to open. Inside is a 50mm / 2″ pipe down into the water table. They are used to test the height of the water table and can be used to withdraw water samples for testing. Multiple test bores are often placed in locations where there has been a pollution leak that needs to be tracked long term. Leaks can be from something like an underground fuel tank or a chemical factory or similar.

Wall Dongus in our new apartment. It is loose and pulling it out of the wall shows that it’s attached to a cable. The little rondell on the front is a button

A: An emergency alert button for an in-building nurse. The apartment building may have once been an assisted living facility.

Found in an old leather (possibly medical) suitcase. 12cm long, pincers open when red top is pushed down. ‘02406CHR’ printed on back of old card container.

A: It’s a vintage olive/pickle grabber

Very old wood knot sculpture, with Hebrew inscription.

A: Israeli here, grew up in Jerusalem. This is probably a (kind of old) souvenir from old Jerusalem. The writing on the back says “Jerusalem”, but in a kind of biblical way (pronounced Yerushalem and not Yerushalayim, as commonly pronounced in Israel today).

Found on the beach in Ventura County, CA

A: It’s a piece of a sea urchin test.

Found among my dad’s things. Interesting velvet box with black object inside

A: It’s a pocket handwarmer…an old one too. I used to have a few for camping and fishing. Haven’t seen this style for a while. You light the rod in the middle. it is a coal, you close it up and pop it in your pocket. Blow in it to stoke it up.

This absolutely massive triangle cut into the landscape, seen somewhere on a flight from Houston to LA.

A: This is an auxiliary airfield originally built during WWII for military training. 

Small little sacs forming on the first floor ceiling below my guest bathroom.

A: The colour, shape and size would lead me to believe that these could actually be root nodules. If you’re on the first floor and these are root nodules, then there’s only one crazy invasive plant that I know is capable of this. Japanese knotweed. If this is indeed Japanese knotweed, it’s already too late

I’ve seen you guys do it before – a bicycle was hit & run in my hometown today. The police have narrowed it down to a 2014-18 GM large SUV or truck. Can anyone narrow it down more off of this piece?

A: Looks more like a ‘14-‘18 Yukon or Tahoe; I’m leaning toward a black Yukon. The top part of the mirror on Yukons matches the paint. The top part of the mirror on a Tahoe is typically chrome or matte black. The bottom part of the mirror on an Escalade is typically chrome. The top part of the mirror on a Silvervado is either chrome or matte black.

Made of wood. Found in a thrift store. Has multiple spindle things. No moving parts. What is it???

A: It’s “perpetual motion” magnetic toy. You are missing an integral part. The donut should have a magnet in it. There is a rod that should go in the center of that donut that is also magnetized. It connects with a string to the little metal hook on the other side. Because of electromagnetic induction, once you put batteries in the bottom of the unit and spin the rod, it won’t stop spinning until the batteries run out of juice.

My dad collect old stuff, but even he doesnt know what this is, it looks like its put together so i cant open it. We are Serbian if that helps.

A: Looks like an old wooden plumb bob.

What is this thing? I found it in a frozen meal. It’s sharp and hard, spiky, and brown-ish coloured.

A: It’s a seed pod

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