It's been discussed at length on one of the engineering forums. The general
consensus is that it it was for recording sound waves. The burner being to
smoke cover a cylinder, and there is a large aperture where a horn
previously was. Thought to be converted from a wax cylinder phonograph.
How about "wiping" previously recorded wax cylinders? Or making new
ones? Lamp softens the wax and a roller makes it smooth.
I can't see a roller but it could be missing or one of the bits we can
see but not recognise.
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