What is this tool and what does it do?

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Forum topic by Lee Barker posted 03-21-2014 12:54 AM 2773 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Lee Barker

2172 posts in 3910 days

03-21-2014 12:54 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question

The metal rule is 6” long. The handle is finished, either lacquer or varnish. There is a price sticker on the handle, barely legible as a True Value price sticker, the square reddish-orange kind.

The shaft turns freely in the handle. There is a bushing in there so the contact is metal to metal. The handle end of the shank is swaged over a washer.

I am looking forward to solving this conundrum!



-- " his brain, which is as dry as the remainder biscuit after a voyage, he hath strange places cramm'd with observation, the which he vents in mangled forms." --Shakespeare, "As You Like It"

14 replies so far

View JustplaneJeff's profile


277 posts in 2963 days

#1 posted 03-21-2014 01:04 AM

Its a hook for rebar wire stays. Little pieces for wire with a loop in each end,, you loop the wire around the pieces of rebar to be joined , run your hook thru the two loops and twist. Hope this helps.

-- JustplaneJeff

View BurlyBob's profile (online now)


8747 posts in 3325 days

#2 posted 03-21-2014 01:05 AM

I bought one of those. I used it for twising wire ties around the rebar for my drive way. You can get those wire ties in bulk. They have a loop around either end, wrap it around the rebar where they cross, hook the tie loops with the tool and wind them tight by spinning the handle in a tight circle. Makes quick work of securing the rebar. Mine cost $2.50. Told the guy at the supply house he ought to throw it in for free seeing as I’d spent several hundred there already. That didn’t fly very well. Haven’t been back since.

View changeoffocus's profile


467 posts in 2677 days

#3 posted 03-21-2014 01:06 AM

It looks very much like the tool iron workers use to hook into the eyelets on the wire ties that are used to hold rebar in place.
Do I get a tee shirt or a hat if I’m correct.

View greg48's profile


632 posts in 3817 days

#4 posted 03-21-2014 01:14 AM

Lee, if it’s for working rebar I highly recommend that you throw it away before
it can infect your woodworking tools

-- Greg, No. Cal. - "Gaudete in Domino Semper"

View bandit571's profile


28323 posts in 3743 days

#5 posted 03-21-2014 01:23 AM

Used to have a index finger worked over by that hooky thingy, six years of rebar work. Used to be called “Rod Buster”, and even ran “steel” crews. Mine had a little bit more of a hook to it, helps with the speed. Them straight ones, the loops would sometimes just slide back off. Used to be, I could out tie a guy who used the pliers& and wire reel. Kind of ticked him off, too.

The ties are known as “Bag Ties”. And that is known as a spinner. You’d be surprised at how many I’d wear out in a year….

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


17297 posts in 3678 days

#6 posted 03-21-2014 01:39 AM

I used one of those in my younger days to twist the wire ties burly bob described, except the ones I used were made of copper and were applied to 50lb bags of crushed ice to hold them closed.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. - OldTools Archive -

View Kryptic's profile


294 posts in 2720 days

#7 posted 03-21-2014 01:41 AM

they make rugs with them ?

or tie down radiant heat tubing to metal grid locked in oncoming cement pour

we need to find the use in tools that surround us, to the job that confronts us, even if its tying the cat gut to a racquet

View mikeevens45's profile


68 posts in 2636 days

#8 posted 03-21-2014 01:42 AM

true use was for tying potato sacks with wire ties

-- as technology progresses, wood workers seem to regress...all my power tools and my favorite is a chisel and a hand plane

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


17297 posts in 3678 days

#9 posted 03-21-2014 01:48 AM

True use? The others were false? It can’t be multi-purpose? My days in the icehouse were a total fraud, amazing. I never knew.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. - OldTools Archive -

View Kryptic's profile


294 posts in 2720 days

#10 posted 03-21-2014 03:03 AM

for all the useless tools ever invented

this one seems to encompass many trains of useful thought

View Steve Kreins's profile

Steve Kreins

358 posts in 2690 days

#11 posted 03-21-2014 12:15 PM

This is a surgical instrument from the 18th century used to clear clogged sinuses.

-- I thank God for everything, especially all of you!

View fuigb's profile


593 posts in 4017 days

#12 posted 03-21-2014 12:18 PM

A well-used ice pick? :)

-- - Crud. Go tell your mother that I need a Band-aid.

View BinghamtonEd's profile


2298 posts in 3429 days

#13 posted 03-21-2014 01:45 PM

Doesn’t matter what it was, it’s a mortise-cleaner-outer now.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View Grandpa's profile


3264 posts in 3735 days

#14 posted 03-21-2014 03:38 PM

It has a trade name that has escaped me. Pig tail or something like this. It is used to tie the wires that hold rebar. If you have ever tied rebar you will not want to do without one of these. They are a fine tool but beyond that they are like most other tools….not so good. by that I mean it would be like using a wood chisel for a screw driver but when you get the rebar ties it is a fine tool. This was no doubt designed by a person working in the trenches that had never heard of a patent so he died tying rebar with a smile on his face instead of sitting in a recliner in front of the fire place.

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