Internet, Please Explain What This Is (25 pics)

Posted in INTERESTING       23 Jan 2020       9025       3

Antique shop in PA, USA picked this up, said maybe 4ft tall. Googled the writing which leads to PDFs about Penn Railroads but not a lot of workable info. Ideas? I follow these guys on insta – not available in person to get my own visual.

1 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: That is a foundry mold pattern. This is the pattern that is used to make the mold. The patterns are designed and shaped in wood. The pattern is then used to make a compressed sand mold for casting iron


Plastic and paper straw-like objects. Sticker in container says Made in Austria. The paper is all hand-painted, and the tip is made of some kind of plastic. At first I thought they were drinking straws, but they splay a bit at the end. Ideas?

2 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: They’re fancy pre-rolled comes for “tobacco”


This thing appeared in my bathroom ceiling corner. its half the size of a pinkie. Does anyone know what is it?

3 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: Mud dauber wasp nest. Grabs spiders, paralyzes them then puts an egg on them and locks the spider away until the young eat said spider and break out.


These are all over one of the walls at my local train station in London. Anybody know what they could be?

4 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: I believe those are made by coins. If you put a coin on brick, and twist it, it will eventually make perfect circles like that. Depending on where this is in London, they may have been spending a LOT of time there. The London Underground was used as bomb shelters during WWII, so a lot of people spent a lot of time in those train stations.


Found in a washroom in London – what is this thing in the middle? (Doesn’t have anything in it currently)

5 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: Soap dispenser. It’s weighted at the bottom so in theory it should tip back up after you’ve got soap on your hands. Of course that depends on not having much friction on the axel…


Izismile Video Collection

What is this glass set used for?

6 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: Culver martini set


Someone dropped this in the back of my work truck. Possibly related to electrical overhead lines as I was working with a crew of linemen that day.

7 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: Hydrant wrench.


I found this in the woods with my friends. We all got really freaked out upon seeing it. I’m very curious on what the heck this thing is.

8 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: It could just be a colony of fungus and bacteria, like the SCOBY thing they use to make kombucha.


Some sort of coin box. It “eats” the coins and won’t let them back out. Looked up the patent number with no luck.

9 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: Looks like they were given out by banks, probably to kids to start a savings acct. Fill it up and then bring it to the bank to deposit. Many have the bank advertisement on them.


It sits in the top right corner of my heater. I have absolutely no clue what of does.

10 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: Steam vent for the radiator



What are these rectangular metal bars on crossing buttons? On nearly every button in Wellington

11 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: There are people who delight in thumping the traffic light button with a kick and so the black metal bars protect the mechanism from damage.


“Unknown cool old brass item” found at a thrift shop in Wilmington, NC. Any ideas?

12 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: It’s an antique kerosene lodge stove.


Found on the grounds of a 19th-20th century residential property in Manitoba.

13 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: That is an old fashioned appliance plug. It joined the electrical cord to countertop appliances like waffle irons and popcorn poppers.

I found this tool with some measuring devices. The octagon rotates and the other side is completely brass.

14 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: We use these on the railroad. We have big electro magnets we use on knuckles (part of the coupler) to test for cracks with a magnetic die. And we use this pie gauge to make sure our big magnet is working and the magnet isn’t malfunctioning


What are these barcodes stuck the pillars holding up a bridge for an elevated train used for and how are they used? This is the DLR in London.

15 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: It’s a level you target with a fancy theodolight, what each bar does is that it represents numbers which the theodolight scans accurately and then works out the meters above sea level height. I’m guessing your near Crossrail so it’s probably there to monitor if the pile drops in height as they dig under it.



This thing is parking on my university campus… what is it?

16 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: It is a type of velomobile


Bought in a secondhand store, thought it was for sugar..

17 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: A butter bell. Fill the top with softened butter then insert into the lower part that is partially filled with water. Keeps air from getting to the butter and making it go rancid.


What is this? Found under my grandparents washer and dryer.

18 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: Probably designed to print a Cameo Trade Card , circa 1860’s. One of the coolest antique things I have seen listed in this sub in a long time.


Why is there a cable coming from the rain gutter? Oslo, Norway

19 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: This heater prevents the gutter and down pipe from filling with ice and causing an ice dam that could get under the roof.


What is this ceramic ornament? It’s built like a bell of some sort, but only makes a tiny ‘clunk’ sound.

20 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: Chinese good fortune wishing pot/dream jar.



Weird loop thing on my Ted Baker bag

21 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: To lock the bag with the zipper pull


I traded a pin for this back when I was a kid, I’m 99.99% sure it’s not a medal of honor or anything like that but it would be interesting to know what it actually is as I cant read it.

22 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: It’s Chinese. Jiangxi Province First Model/Hero Conference/Assembly

Commemorative Medal. Google indicates it’s from 1955.


Found in my moms flat tire.

23 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: It’s a road marker a snowplow can go over without damaging, but only in one direction


My car broke down, and this was under it. Car will start, but won’t drive or reverse, only makes loud cracking noise.

24 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: The good news is that this is not a piece of the transmission. The bad news is that this is a piece out of one of the CV joints. The ring in the middle.

This means that the axle is broken, and the car won’t drive because the differential is sending all the power to that axle, which is what they do. The crackling is whatever is broken spinning around and hitting things. The good news is that if nothing else is broken, it just means replacing the axle and CV joints, which isn’t nearly as bad as a new transmission.


My daughter found this plastic little boy figure half buried outside in some gravel. What’s it for/from?

25 Internet, Please Explain What This Is

A: A frozen Charlotte doll



Visit 1 year ago
The last one is also used in mexican king's cake, The bakers put some of them, when you cut your Alice (it's The tradition) and if You find it, represents The born of Jesus, so You have to invite everybody to eat tamales on February 2nd "Day of la Candelaria".
Circus 1 year ago
#18 is also upside down. Poor guy
Amazing 1 year ago
#10 is a vent to release air trapped in radiator



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