The Virtual Apple Parer Museum.  Dedicated to the exhibition and educational study of antique apple parers which have both historic and artistic value.














Primitive Apple Parer

Straddle Board with Gearbox

This straddle board apple parer was found at a farm built in the early 1800's near Thetford, Vermont. The owner of the estate, now in his 90's, was born in the old family farmhouse. Mike Pheffer found the handcrafted apple parer on a shelf in a barn attached to the house. He said, "It was sitting on that shelf like it had been placed there in the last century and just left. Nearby were some nice early baskets, which could have been used for gathering apples."

Primitive Straddle Board Apple Parer

Metal spur gears are revealed when one opens the lid of the gearbox. The gear in the picture below is connected to the crank. It drives a set of two gears on a common axle that in turn rotate a gear connected to the fork. With each turn of the handle the apple rotates 4 times.


The wooden handle rotates a gear with 24 teeth that is connected to a smaller gear below with 12 teeth. So, with every turn of the handle the smaller gear rotates two times. The 12-tooth gear is on the same axle as a larger gear with 24 teeth. Thus, the gear with 24 teeth rotates at the same rate as the 12- tooth gear (two times for every turn of the handle). This 24-tooth gear sits underneath a smaller 12-tooth gear that rotates the fork. With every crank of the wood handle the 24-tooth gear rotates the 12-tooth and 24-tooth gear 2 times, which in turn rotate the 12-tooth fork gear 2 times rotating the apple 4 times. A hand-guided paring knife would be used to take the peel off the apple. In the picture below one can see the 24-tooth gear (top) that is rotated by the handle. The 12-tooth gear (bottom of picture) is connected to the fork. These two gears are on seperate axles.

Wooden Gears
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