gaminwench wrote:Hmmmm...Well, I have to say DAB's suggestion that it's a Civil War "land torpedo" is quite compelling, but I really don't see how the mechanics would actually work in the space allowed; there's no room for the ball to sink down onto the pin--in fact, the ball rests gently upon that pin and free-pivots slightly on it; and there's really not much room at all between the walls of the cups and ball to insert gunpowder or explosives; the hole in the ball is fairly roomy by comparison, but I can;t imagine it holding more than a thimble's full of primer or powder or whatever. All that said, it DOES have the look and feel of being some sort of armament or weapon; certainly if one could actually get the ball and cups to explode, they'd cause considerable damage! And if this is designed to be thrown, then the pattern of indentation-marks around the outsides of the cups would certainly help a man grip the thing firmly as he lobs it at the enemy (tho how far he could actually throw a 6 lbs. iron ball is open to speculation).
Dang, I'd still really love to know what this infernal device is! Thanks for your ideas everyone! Keep 'em coming!
From what I can see in the last picture compared to the middle picture(right half where it shows the lid up side down), is the hole on the inside of the lid smaller than the flanges out on the out side of the lid?
Also, about how big is the whole on the ball part of it? Big enough to stick your finger in?