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Weird find in old tool box, what is it?

Wisconsinite

Red Skull Member
Joined
May 19, 2020
Member Number
132
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Loc
Milwaukee, WI
I bought a tool box and found this tool in it. I have no idea what it is, appears to be made of brass. Any ideas?



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No idea. My phone does a thing where if you hold the camera to something it'll pull up similar images and it came up blank. Looks like something that if you twist it the wrong way, Pinhead will show up and teach you about suffering. Be careful with that.
 
Internals for an old cash register?

Google search for antique register parts comes up with nothing like that. Great guess though. The dollar and percent symbols surely lead to that or a typewriter? [/hearty shrug]
 
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​ The box has an assortment of tools and misc. odds and ends. There is everything from thread files to knock out punches, pyrometers, rev indicators, jewelry and fine engraving tools, bar clamps, and leather working tools. The numbers and symbols on the block have me very intrigued.
 
Turns out it is a part for old type setting machines. Was pulled from a newpaper printer way back when , according to the daughter of the PO.
 
Prototype Enigma machine. Some sort of typesetting device
 
They are called 'mats', used in a Linotype machine. Old school, the way we used to set type ('hot type') using these brass mats, we would cast molten lead ('lino metal') to create lines of type for letterpress printing.
 
The print shop I now own (went to work here in High School, 1971) bought two brand new Linotype (aka Mergenthaler) machines in 1946 I believe. I can't find the original invoice but I think they paid $14,000 apiece! Think about that in 1946 dollars! I GAVE the last one to another printer for free, but sold him the mats. These mats were crazy expensive in their day. He was a huge fan of old school printing, and helped a local college make a movie 'Linotype'. I've never watched it, I saw enough 'hands-on' to get enough!
 
They are called 'mats', used in a Linotype machine. Old school, the way we used to set type ('hot type') using these brass mats, we would cast molten lead ('lino metal') to create lines of type for letterpress printing.

I was thinking something from the textile industry... But part of a fucking Linotype machine is the win! Print-shop in high school had one; crusty old teacher showed us snot heads how it worked.
About 5 minutes into the video it looks like the part from the OP picture. Enjoy:smokin:

 
Turns out it is a part for old type setting machines. Was pulled from a newpaper printer way back when , according to the daughter of the PO.

I was going to say this. Linotype matrix.

Source: Not a printer (though I was once in a printing union), just watched all 3 Industrial Revelations series on youtube. I strongly recommend the entire series.

15:55



But also though to be fair to me, I know what a linotype matrix is because it's one of the major civilizational advancements of the Industrial Age. The Germans came up with the printing press (a literal hand operated press), the power press (automated, invented by Kerning, which is now the term for the space between characters), and Linotyping, but the British came up with the modern fonts (Baskerville). When it came to font, the Germans went way, way, way down the rabbit hole of ornate Tuetonic script. British made font easy to read (I still use Baskerville on documents).

Mind your p's and q's comes from printing, but that's a pretty well known trivia. From hand type-setting.
 
No idea. My phone does a thing where if you hold the camera to something it'll pull up similar images and it came up blank. Looks like something that if you twist it the wrong way, Pinhead will show up and teach you about suffering. Be careful with that.

chuckle
 
I was going to say this. Linotype matrix.

Source: Not a printer (though I was once in a printing union), just watched all 3 Industrial Revelations series on youtube. I strongly recommend the entire series.

15:55



But also though to be fair to me, I know what a linotype matrix is because it's one of the major civilizational advancements of the Industrial Age. The Germans came up with the printing press (a literal hand operated press), the power press (automated, invented by Kerning, which is now the term for the space between characters), and Linotyping, but the British came up with the modern fonts (Baskerville). When it came to font, the Germans went way, way, way down the rabbit hole of ornate Tuetonic script. British made font easy to read (I still use Baskerville on documents).

Mind your p's and q's comes from printing, but that's a pretty well known trivia. From hand type-setting.


Shut up. All you do is google and watch youtube from your mommy's basement. That doesnt make you an expert on anything.
 
Shut up. All you do is google and watch youtube from your mommy's basement. That doesnt make you an expert on anything.

It's a job that doesn't exist anymore, how else are you supposed to learn about it?

You people can't even fucking troll right :shaking:
 
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