Friday, September 28, 2007

What Is This?

It measures 20.5 inches tall by 25 inches wide when set up like this.

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My neighbor bought it at an antique store several years ago. It was labeled "yarn winder". Her intention was to use it to display towels on, but it ended up forgotten in her garage. She came across it the other day and gave it to me because she knows I like to knit.

At first glance it does appear that it could be a yarn winder, but the design is wrong. Even if it was mounted on a base, there is no way to slip the yarn off after it is wound.

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There are some empty holes in a few of the "spokes" and by the looks of it, something used to be attached there.

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The way the pieces are joined makes the thing somewhat collapsible. You can tell it has been stored in a different position than it is now.

I have no idea what the true purpose of this object is, but I'm hoping someone can help me figure it out or guide me to a source that will know.

The only thing I feel certain about is that it once belonged to R. Hartman.

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And now it belongs to me.

17 comments:

  1. Wow...I am curious. I can't wait to see if anyone can identify it. My first thought was a yarn winder too.

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  2. Yep, that is a thing to wind hanks of yarn on, but I don't know its special use or its name. How about emailing a photo to Spin-Off? They'll know.

    How wonderful that it has a name on it!

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  3. It looks like a yarn winder but it could have another use...very intriguing!

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  4. Very intriguing, indeed! I'm anxious to know what you find out about it.

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  5. How neat! My first thought was it would wind yarn hanks, like Suzann said.
    Can't wait to find out more about your mystery tool.

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  6. It looks neat, whatever it is! It does look like it could be used to wind yarn, except how to get it off?

    ps. thanks for mentioning my goof on the bluebird/purple martin house on my blog! ha! The purple martin house doesn't look anything like that. ( brain burp )

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  7. I've seen those before on ebay, also labled as yarn winders.

    Either way, the old wood is just scrumptious and the signature makes it even more special!

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  8. Very neat! It will be interesting to see what you find out about it.

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  9. Anonymous9:53 PM

    Could this be a version of a swift? If so, the question isn't how to get the yarn hank off but how to get it on. Does one of the pieces easily slip off the pegs so you could wiggle the yarn through the opening to get it on (or off)?

    Charlotte

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  10. Charlotte,

    No the "spokes" are firmly attached. So far I have not been able to find anything like this "yarn winder" on the Internet. I'll have to do some more research to solve this mystery.

    Tracy

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  11. This is a yarn winder and I have seen one like it before. It is missing it's base though. It would look something like a ferris wheel when sitting on the base. I don't know how it functions though.

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  12. It's a nice piece, whatever the use. Perhaps you will find the long lost art of wool winding with it.

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  13. My hubby thinks the yarn might be lifted off after you collapse it? Very pretty piece of wood!

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  14. How neat! Whatver it is. I thought it looked like a yarn winder too. Very intriguing that it has a name on it too, maybe the craftsperson who made it was so proud that he/she put the name there.

    I wonder if they would know anything about it over at Knitting History.

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  15. Are you sure it is not a fish smoker? I think we need more research......

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  16. That's a cool treasure. I love the signature.

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  17. Ohhhh I'm with Lana's husband! Easily a yarn/skein winder and if it collapses then it gives plenty of slack to remove the skein.

    Gorgeous pictures Tracy, as always. Love all the beach time and scripture quotes too. :)

    XOXOXOOXX

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Thank you for commenting!
~Tracy