Steel Wood Screw and Nail
The steel wood screw is designed to hold two pieces of wood together. Screws have been used for thousands of years, but it wasn’t until the 1770s that screws made of metal were first mass-produced. The design of the wood screw has not changed significantly since then. The end of a wood screw is a sharp point to help it bite into wood. The end of this screw is obscured by a small ball of weld material. This level of precision welding would have required great skill.
The nail is also steel. Originally these were made by hand from wrought iron, but the production of nails was automated in the 18th century. Most nails produced since 1900 are ‘wire nails’ made from cutting the sort of steel wire visible in other sections of the sculpture. These wire nails were also known as ‘French nails’ as it was in France that the method originated.