Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Crowbar Popularity

A crowbar, pry bar, or prybar, more informally a jimmy, jimmy bar[citation needed], jemmy (British Isles)[citation needed] or gooseneck is a tool consisting of a metal bar with a single curved end and flattened points, often with a small fissure on one or both ends for removing nails. In the British Isles, "crowbar" may be used loosely for this tool, but is more commonly used to mean a larger straight tool (see spud bar). The term "jemmy" or "jimmy" most often refers to the tool when used for burglary.

It is used as a lever to either force apart two objects or to remove nails. Crowbars are commonly used to open nailed wooden boxes. Another common use for larger crowbars is general demolition: for removing nails, prying apart boards, and generally smashing things.

Crowbars can be used as any of the three lever classes but the curved end is usually used as a first-class lever, and the flat end as a 2nd class lever.

Normally made of medium carbon steel, they can be made from titanium also, which has the advantage of being lighter, nonmagnetic, and spark-resistant.

The least expensive, most common crowbars are forged from hexagonal or sometimes cylindrical stock. More advanced, expensive designs often are forged with an I shaped cross sectional shaft similar to an I-beam.

The term crowbar is named after its resemblance to the feet or beak of a crow, with a history that traces to at least 1400. They were first called crow bars and later the two joined into one word.They also were called crows; William Shakespeare used the term crow in many places, including his play Romeo and Juliet, Act 5, scene ii:

Get me an iron crow and bring it straight.

Unto my cell. ...

There also exists a theory that the term crowbar derives from Jim Crow and that they were used by blacks to perform menial tasks, giving it racist origins. Jim Crow was alive at least 400 years after the origin of the crowbar, so it is highly unlikely that he had anything to do with its name.

The crowbar has become something of symbol in video game culture thanks to the success of the Half-Life series developed by Valve Corporation. The crowbar has come to symbolize the series protagonist, Gordon Freeman, as the first weapon he picks up is a crowbar; he is nearly always pictured with a crowbar in hand. A single image of a crowbar was used as a magazine advertisement when the release of Half-Life 2 was impending in 2004.The crowbar has so far been featured in every game in the Half-Life series except Half-Life: Opposing Force, where Corporal Adrian Shephard uses a wrench. A crowbar is also used as a weapon in the Deus Ex series.

That's all I know...........

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