Site icon Things I find in the garbage

Bits and reels


I found these tins on Canada day along with the silver plate candelabra and antique hanging lamp. I brought them home without looking beyond a cursory glance at what was inside.

These Granger pipe tobacco tin was full of these brass (?) things. Some of the circular pieces have two little wheels and some don’t. There’s also some wire pieces that may be for hanging the circular parts. Any ideas as to what these were for?

FYI, I found a great tool for identifying mysterious items. It’s a Reddit messageboard called “What is this thing?”. I’d recommend it if you want to know what something (including plants you may see, animals, etc) is.

The bigger tin, marked as being made by the MacDonald Mfg Co. out of Toronto, contained a more diverse portfolio of bits and pieces. The tin is pretty old, I would guess it’s from the 1920s.

This piece stuck out from the rest. It’s a Shakespeare “Kazoo” fishing reel and it’s definitely an antique, though I’m not sure exactly how old it might be. It seems to work fine. These generally sell for between 10-15 dollars on Ebay, though I’ll probably just put it in a future yard sale. Selling things for that little online is generally more stress than it’s worth.

I found this patch along with some other not particularly noteworthy things in some trash bags near my place a few days ago. I decided to Google it last night and found out that it’s a WWII-era patch for a wireless air gunner (WAG). I can’t imagine what that job would have been like! It seems to be worth around 10-15$ on Ebay, again falling into that “is it worth bothering” range. Regardless, it’s always interesting finding military stuff.

I went to the bike co-op early this afternoon. I trued my wheel and did a few other minor repairs. It runs nicer now but the bump on each revolution of the back wheel remains. My theory now is that the bump is a result of a sizeable dent on my wheel, which may protrude upwards misshaping the wheel. I might be able to hammer that out but I may also have to buy a new wheel.

My Sony DVCAM player finally sold for 135$. Previously I had sold it to someone in Italy but the shipping was astronomical and the deal fell through, which was sort of lucky because I managed to get a better price the second time around. One thing I think I’ve learned about Ebay is that fixed price listings are often the best choice. It may take a little longer but I find that you can make more money that way. Auctions are good when you have something and you’re not exactly sure what you can get for it, but overall the fixed price listing forces the extra motivated buyer to pay a little more to get what they want.

I also had to cancel a sale (of a textbook I found in November, the last of 6) because the person was in Australia and the shipping was too high. They wanted me to ship the cheapest way (22$ via surface) but that’s notoriously unreliable and leaves me very vulnerable to fraud. I cancelled the transaction and it sold again, but this time the buyer claimed that they thought the shipping would be free, so that’s likely to fall through as well. It’s important to note that this last textbook is only still around because someone bought it near the beginning of the winter semester, but then never paid for it and disappeared for a couple of weeks. I cancelled the transaction and didn’t lose any money, but by then the semester had started and the demand for the book had plummeted. The guy emailed me far too late telling me he had bought one somewhere else, to which I had to resist telling him I didn’t give a damn. These are some of the reasons I find selling online more trouble than it’s worth sometimes. I think going forward I will limit most of my items to the US and Canada, which are generally my biggest customers regardless.

Anyways, I’m going to go out and enjoy this sunny day, and perhaps later enjoy some music at Jazz Fest.

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