2257. Around 5-1/2" long, take a look at Neatorama for more guesses on this one and a chance to win a T-shirt:
2258. 3" long, sent in by a visitor who is looking to identify this item:
2259. Around 12" tall:
2260. Another unidentified item that was sent in by a visitor, it's heavy and made of porcelain:
2261. 3/4" diameter:
2262. These tools are all related:
2257. These are sharpshooter's glasses from the Civil War, the frosted glass eliminated distractions to help them concentrate and the amber color heightened contrast for better vision. They were worn by the most accurate shooters who were used as snipers and were assigned positions surrounding the battlefields.
2258. The most popular suggestion for this is that it's some type of mold, other guesses include: a connector for two rods or pipes, a cad welding fixture, and a bearing or watch press.
2259. This is the floating hourglass science puzzle, when it's inverted, one of the hourglasses rises and the other sinks but neither moves at all for at least 12 to 15 seconds, the puzzle is to figure out why there is a delay in movement. There is a good video of it at the link. Answer below
There is a delay because of friction against the side of the tube, the hourglasses are top heavy and tilt slightly until some of the sand falls to the bottom.
2260. This is a baren used for block printing. When you have inked the printing block and put the paper over it, the baren is used to apply pressure to make the ink evenly transfer to the paper.
2261. A Victorian picture nail cover:
2262. Some of these devices were used to service the Hubble Telescope on mission STS-125:
At far right is the pistol grip tool. It can install and remove instruments, drive latches and open doors. A self-contained, high-torque drive, the tool features an on-board computer that permits users to tailor its performance to the mission demands. In the foreground are the card extraction and insertion tools to enable removal of electronic cards. At top center is the plastic version of the pistol grip tool used by astronauts during practice in the water tank at NASA's Johnson Space Center. At center left is the bit caddy.
There are lots of great photos of this mission at the link.
I own a lot of different tool books but the one that I use first as a reference is the Dictionary of American Hand Tools: A Pictorial Synopsis (Schiffer Book for Collectors) It has over 4,500 images and is a great book for learning about about a wide variety of tools. This book gets my highest recommendation.
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Last week's set is seen below, click here to view the entire post.
More discussion and comments on these photos can be found at the newsgroup rec.puzzles.