20 Weird Things People Puzzled Over Before Asking The Internet For Help

A 1950s Seeburg jukebox
reddit | mrfansome

There's no shortage of weird items in the world, things whose purpose isn't immediately apparent. When faced with one of these items, we have two choices: live in ignorance, or post it on r/whatisthisthing to get a conclusive answer.

Since ignorance is boring, it should go without saying that we're going with the latter option. What are these things? The answers will soon become apparent.

"Small, cylindrical 'scroll' type thing that extends out and can be twisted to reveal a smaller hollow tube on the opposite end. Has 'Fairchild' inscribed on it. Approx 2-3” in length. Thin longitudinal slit down the center."

A Victorian pencil pendant
reddit | Two-Prong-Poo

Brand names make things way easier to identify, and this thing was ID'd pretty quickly. It's a Victorian pencil pendant — essentially an ancestor of today's mechanical pencils.

"Carved wooden container I picked up at a garage sale, has a little door on the lower side. top looks like it should open."

An incense case
reddit | OhFrackItsZach

This thing is simply an incense case. Most incense holders are more simple, but ones like this have a built-in rollcage of sorts.

"In outdated bathroom. Compartment over the sink opens to reveal … what? It’s metal, has 4 slots. House was built 1950s, not sure if this is original."

An old-fashioned toothbrush holder
reddit | ACrosegurl772

Once upon a time, toothbrush handles were flat, not curved. This is simply an old-school toothbrush holder.

"We found this metal detecting. I believe it is thin brass, about 3 to four inches long. It seems too thin to be a belt buckle. Definitely stamped."

A Union Army belt buckle
reddit | CommaGuy

Despite OP's doubts, this thing is, in fact, a belt buckle. It's either an original or a replica of the ones worn by the Union Army during the Civil War.

"Small metal object, flattened on end like it landed on concrete at high speed, found on sidewalk."

A bullet after being fired
reddit | rekniht01

I don't have any experience with identifying bullets, but this thing immediately looked like a fired bullet to me. Turns out, surprise surprise, it's a fired bullet.

"I found this odd set of disposable cutlery (?) in a new flat I just moved into."

Set of clay modeling utensils
reddit | Riverendell

This is kind of cutlery, but also kind of not. If you've ever worked with clay, you'll probably recognize these as clay modeling utensils.

"What is this decoration being worn by US President Harry Truman at the 1948 Democratic Convention?"

President Harry Truman wearing a badge at the 1948 DNC
reddit | Ganesha811

The fact that this was seen at the DNC offers a hint as to what it is. It's simply a badge that identifies the person's rank and position. In this case, his position would be "president."

"My parents found this at a yard sale among antiques for 5$. the person who sold it didn’t know what it is either and thought it was a mold of some kind. It is three pieces including the sleeve that slides up the handle to hold it together. Large sphere on top with part of it open on one half."

Bougie salad servers
reddit | mynameispeejay

This one seems incredibly complex and possibly ancient, but it turns out it's just a bougie new-school set of salad servers.

"What is this metal 'Baby' plaque? Found while thrifting. No writing on the back. The chain is attached to the plaque and hooks."

Clip to prevent baby blankets from being kicked off
reddit | uglyorganbycursive

This thing is designed to clip into a baby's stroller. It attaches to a blanket, and keeps the blanket from being kicked around. Kind of weird, and redundant, that it says 'baby.'

"Wooden box with about 10 aluminum and 10 leather unknown objects. They are very light and not sure what they are used for, also each one has a number printed on it one digit numbers."

A dog training kit
reddit | Human-Butterfly-6430

This is a kit for training dogs. The aluminum and leather objects serve as targets in dog competitions.

"A wooden doorstop-like object with a slot for a box of matches."

A wall-mounted match holder
reddit | ChildishGiant

It might look like a doorstop, but its intended place is actually on the wall, not on the floor. It's a wall-mounted match holder, dating back to the times when people needed matches to light their stoves and heaters.

"Can anyone identify this object ? It’s metallic, quite light in weight, spherical, not magnetic, size of a small grape."

A marcasite nodule
reddit | kiwispudd

I really wanted this to be a meteorite of some kind, but it's actually a marcasite nodule. What's a marcasite nodule, you might ask? It's a type of crystal structure.

"What are these 2 rods? Found in the attic left by previous tenants, around 100cm in length."

Rods used to open attic loft
reddit | LilGiantPanda

These things are designed to reach out-of-the-way latches to activate them. Sometimes they're used for windows. This one was most likely used to pull the hatch of an attic loft open.

"Large white and red beam in backyard of newly-purchased house in Texas, installed within last 3-5 years, no evidence of animals or livestock ever being on the property. Rounded beam, very solid, not sure if hollow."

A bollard in a backyard
reddit | Slow_Material4728

This is clearly part of a Tony Hawk's Pro Skater level. If you don't believe my explanation, an alternative explanation — that it's a bollard to limit car access — is equally plausible.

"What is this small knickknack we found at my girlfriend's house? Crank rotates freely."

A vintage automatic card shuffler
reddit | unicodePicasso

This is an automatic card shuffler. It isn't an automated card shuffler, since this requires a hand to crank it, but it's still more automatic than doing it the old-school way.

"Neighbor had some brush cleared in their front yard, then had this metal box put up."

A box to catch bee swarms
reddit | anchoraroundmyfeet

You know how bees swarm when they're looking for a new place to nest? The Reddit hive mind concluded that this box is for beekeepers to catch bee swarms.

"What is this big round well-type thing in the middle of the women’s restroom? It’s in an older bathroom and it doesn’t seem to have any water running to or from it…just a big cylinder with a drain in it."

A foot pedal-operated communal sink
reddit | lilithrebbecca

Depending on where you went to school, this thing may be immediately identifiable to you. It's a communal sink. Step on the bar at the bottom and water will come out.

"White/silver metal circle object, just about 4.75" in diameter, chippy thing on back, fell from sky."

Inspection hole cover from an airplane
reddit | hardyharhar

If it fell from the sky, it could only come from an airplane (or a spacecraft, I suppose). This is the inspection cover hole from an airplane. As for why it's no longer covering an inspection hole, we have no answers.

"My new neighbors just put this out on their back patio, the coaxial connect for the house is right inside the door. I am guessing this is some kind of wifi extender?"

An SDR antenna on a back patio
reddit | Wallace_of_Hawthorne

It looks like it has to do with radio signals, and it does. It appears to be an SDR antenna for picking up a wide range of radio frequencies.

"What is this 'alien-pod' looking thing?"

A 1950s Seeburg jukebox
reddit | mrfansome

Here's an example of something that most people have seen, but likely not in this form factor. The big item is a Seeburg jukebox from the 1950s, while the smaller, teardrop-shaped thing to the right is a wall-mounted speaker.