Hazard A Guess: Week of April 18, 2002

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Hello from Hazard!

If only farmers today had as much help making hay as Hazard received in identifying Item No. 645, the single harpoon hay fork used for unloading loose hay from wagons and loading haymows.

The early guessers were acknowledged in last week’s issue, but many more readers responded between the time our early section went to press Monday morning and when the paper arrived at homes later last week.

Our thanks to: William Ingram, Sistersville, W.Va.; Henry Wellhausen, New Castle, Pa.; David DeCampli, Ellwood City, Pa.; Bill Ault, Chandlersville, Ohio; Andrew D. Miller, Fresno, Ohio; Herb Witzgall, Moundsville, W.Va.; Norma Geiwitz, West Middlesex, Pa.; Art Rudebock, Lisbon, Ohio; Robert Sprowls, Honey Grove, Pa.; and John Borkowski, Kirtland, Ohio.

Like many readers who responded, Mr. Borkowski remembers using one. “One bad feature of the single model,” he adds, “was that if the boards on the wagon were spaced a couple inches apart and you were getting down to the bottom of the load, the kid on the wagon could push the fork through the hay and through the crack between the boards, then when the tractor driver pulled it up, the whole wagon started to go up. That’s when the man on the tractor screamed at the kid on the wagon about how stupid he was.” Hmmm.

Of course, some things never change. Mr. Borkowski observed that the kid in the mow had the worst job, because it was very dusty and hot. “He usually didn’t have a shirt on, so the chaff and dirt stuck to the sweat. That’s why I learned to swim so well. We would go swimming after a day working with hay.”

Reaching a little further back, to Item No. 644, the fire bucket, we must recognize a final respondent, Barbra Ann Deaton, who writes all the way from Vidor, Texas, who calls herself “one of your most distant, but very loyal readers.” Our thanks.

Item No. 646 grabbed some early responses that were also right on the money. The tool, shared last week by Russell May of Lowell, Ohio, was a “vulcanizer,” or a small, portable tool that could repair holes in early automobile tire tubes.

The tube and patch were placed between the two castings and the wing nuts tightened, fastening the vulcanizer to the damaged spot in an upright position with chains. An ignitable liquid goes in the open cup, and is then lit. The heat vulcanizes the patch onto the tube.

Quick to identify the tool were: Wally Krauss, Madison, Ohio; David Schafer, Lakewood, Ohio; James Conrad, Marshallville, Ohio; Stanley Carpenter, Lewisville, Ohio; G.A. Henderson, Williamstown, W.Va.; James R. Miller; and perhaps the king of vulcanizers, George Rockenberger of East Palestine.

Mr. Rockenberger has a particularly interest in vulcanizers, and has eight Adamson Vulcanizers of various sizes and shapes, as well as some of the gum rubber used for repairing the tire tubes. His vulcanizers were made by the Adamson Manufacturing Company of East Palestine, Ohio.

He says our Item No. 646 is like the Adamson Model U, which you once could buy for $3.

Mr. Rockenberger sent a small, 12-page booklet, Repair & Care of Tires, published by Adamson Manufacturing. He is kindly offering interested readers a copy of the repair guide. Readers can write him at 49602 McClure Road, East Palestine, OH 44413, or by e-mail at rockenge@sky-access.com.

Now, on to Item No. 647, shared by Jerry D. Miller of Middlefield. The item is about 7 inches long and has a patent date of Dec. 10, 1867.

If you think you know what it was used for, sent your responses to: Hazard A Guess, P.O. Box 38, Salem, OH 44460; or via e-mail: editorial@farmanddairy.com.

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