Here we have a "What is it" for you to ponder.
A friend brought it to the Guild of Metalsmiths annual conference. He got it at a garage sale. So far no one we know has any direct knowledge of its intended purpose.
Please contact me if you have any knowledge of this device.
If it were standing on end, one might think it's a post drill, except for the anvil component.
I have added a few callouts to the first of the three pictures to describe what we observed when we looked at it:
(1): This handwheel turns a shaft that goes through the "headstock" to item (4), which is a square socket of sorts.
This handweel appears to have been added at a later date, and we doubt that the vee pulley on it was ever used to drive the shaft.
(2):This wheel appears to have maybe operated a clutching mechanism that would have connected the gear train to the
(3) wheel at the other end of the machine. When we looked up into the bottom of the machine, all we could see were the
ends of the shafts. Rotating the (3) wheel opens and closes the "vise".
(5)This is a thumbscrew. There is a matching thumbscrew (broken off) on the opposite side. We guess their function was to lock the movable "jaw" , but we think they are pretty wimpy for that purposes.
Just to make things a little more confusing, notice the pipe jaws on the movable part only.