I was talking to someone today and she’d mentioned that someone at her work had persuaded some of the people she had to deal with to support her. And I got to thinking about the tool I’d known, back in my Navy days, as The Persuader.
The Persuader was a bit of a mystery.
In the Navy, we were trained, specifically to avoid using a crescent wrench for any purpose. Most DIYers will have had the experience of trying to deal with a nut that had been stripped or deformed by someone using a crescent wrench or a locking grip set of pliers. Which is bad enough, but often such things could affect how well the nut would hold on the fastener, too - by deforming it.
While it’s possible to strip a nut with a box wrench, it’s much harder to do. And so we were trained, as I said, to avoid using crescent wrenches whenever possible. And to aid in that, there was only one crescent wrench in the whole of the engineroom.
It was a four foot long, six to eight inch wide (at it’s maximum aperture) crescent wrench. It had no grooving on it, like a monkey wrench might. It was simply a huge crescent wrench looking just like this image, except for being about 10 times larger.
So, during slack times during watches we’d get it out, again, to marvel at The Persuader. Not only was it a tool that specifically we weren’t supposed to be using on any of the engineroom equipment, but it was a tool that no one knew where we’d find a crew-serviceable nuts to use it ON. Most of the nuts that we knew of that were of a size to make The Persuader a reasonable tool were, according to the maintenance specifications we had, torqued down to several thousand ft-lbs torque. Specifically because the components weren’t meant to be serviced in the normal course of affairs.
So, the conclusion we invariably came to, no matter how we argued it out was that The Persuader was not meant to be used on any of the equipment in the plant.
Which meant it was obviously meant to be used to help the LPO of M-Div keep his grease apes in line.
Many an argument ended when I heard the LPO, or the senior watchstander on duty, ask an obnoxious sailor, “Do I need to get out The Persuader?”
Have other Dopers had the experience of working with, or around, a tool that served no rational purpose, and if so, did that tool have an odd name?