This is a shuttle which is used to weave cloth. Inside the wooden casing is a bobbin which holds the thread that is the weft. The shuttle is shot back and forth across the warp thread. This creates the cloth.
The shuttle is made of hard wood with metal tips at either end. Encased in the wooden shuttle is a metal bobbin which can be taken out and refilled with thread. The shuttle is quite heavy, and has to be made strong due to the high speed that it is shot across the loom repeatedly. In the very old fashion looms which had to be manned by several people, if one the workers put his/her hand in the way of the shuttle, their hand would be broken instantly. Most modern day looms are computerised and made extremely safe.
Toodle pip! Celia.