The old phone system used two distinct ringing FREQUENCIES, 40 Hz and
80 Hz, if I remember correctly, so they could put 8 people on a line
and the phone would only ring half as often. The bells had a tuning
capacitor which blocked the DC you're talking on while tuning the bell
coils to the appropriate frequency so you'd get your ring (and the
rings of the other 3 people on the line with your frequency). If the
phone was "tuned" to 40 Hz, it wouldn't ring on 80 Hz because the
series tuned circuit didn't produce enough current to ring the bells.
My grandmother's phone line was 473J3. 473 was the circuit number. J
was the frequency of the ringer (there were J and M freqs for some
strange reason) And, the 3 was the number of rings....3 short rings.
Some systems had short and long rings for more than 8 people on one
phoneline. In the little community where she lived, there were only 2
phone lines. Any time it rang, of course, they all picked up to see
what the call was about...(c; If you weren't home, no problemo! One
of the other neighbors on your ringer freq would always answer the
call to tell the caller you had gone to town shopping or were out in
your boat tearing up the lake trout and would be home about 4:30 to
clean and cook them....yum yum!!
God I wish I was back there and didn't know about all this new
crap.....The ringer was a big, ugly black box under the electric meter
and fuses in her living room behind the open door to the kitchen...(c;
Scotty! Calibrate the Transporter!
Then, BEAM DOWN MY FEET!!
This assumes that they are not frequency selective party line ringers as
someone else suggested.
Many of the older phones used a 3 wire line cord. Red, green & yellow.
The talk pair is red/green. One side of the bell is connected to either
the red or the green (I forget which) and the yellow is the other side
of the bell circut. While the line is ringing, try connecting the
yellow to either the red or green and see if that rings it.
If this fails or you don't have the 3 wire cord, you will have to open
the phones and locate the ringer wires.
A 500 series phone will have 4 wires coming off the ringer. 2 go to
the network block (K & K1 if I remember correctly) which is a capacitor
in the block. The other two should go to the L1 & L2 terminals which is
also where the red/green line cord connects. One or both is probably
A 300 or 200 series phone has a different network, and the ringer may
have 2 or 4 wires. Again, you want the ringer and a capacitor to be in
series and that combination to be across the talk pair which is usually
marked L1 & L2 on the network.
Rich Greenberg Work: Rich.Greenberg atsign worldspan.com +1 770-563-6656
N6LRT Marietta, GA, USA Play: richgr atsign panix.com +1 770-321-6507
Eastern time zone. I speak for myself & my dogs only. VM'er since CP-67
Canines:Val(Chinook,CGC,TT), Red & Shasta(Husky,(RIP)) Owner:Chinook-L
Atlanta Siberian Husky Rescue. www.panix.com/~richgr/ Asst Owner:Sibernet-L
>This assumes that they are not frequency selective party line ringers as
>someone else suggested.
Nod, only non-Bell used same.
>Many of the older phones used a 3 wire line cord. Red, green & yellow.
>The talk pair is red/green. One side of the bell is connected to either
>the red or the green (I forget which) and the yellow is the other side
>of the bell circut. While the line is ringing, try connecting the
>yellow to either the red or green and see if that rings it.
The ringer typically was ring to ground, i.e. red to yellow.
>A 500 series phone will have 4 wires coming off the ringer. 2 go to
>the network block (K & K1 if I remember correctly) which is a capacitor
>in the block. The other two should go to the L1 & L2 terminals which is
>also where the red/green line cord connects. One or both is probably
A & K are the ringer cap. Don't count on L1 & L2; trace the incoming
tip & ring.
\ ringer coil
--- ringer cap
/ ringer coil
What make (ie Western Electric, Automatic Electric, SC, ITT, etc)?
What model (ie 500, 302, 80, etc.)?
Someone mentioned frequency differences. Actually this is unlikely
because party lines have been gone for a long time in many places,
and quite rare in others.
It's possible that the ringers are broken, or not wired correctly.
Someone else pointed out thigns to check.
>It's possible that the ringers are broken, or not wired correctly.
>Someone else pointed out thigns to check.
Keep in mind, of course, that many, many, people disconnected the ringers
on "extra" phones they had acquired one way or another, so as to prevent
the central office tests from picking them up.
Back in The Good Old Days, all phones were rented from the local telco,
and you had to pay an extra (dollar or whatever)/month for each extra
phone. Yes, children, that's the way it was in the ancient times.
So... if you somehow came into possession of some additional phones and
wanted to hook them up, there was concern that the technicians at the
cnetral office would detect it. Hence many folk disconnected the bells to
make this harder.
danny "read it somewhere or another" burstein
Knowledge may be power, but communications is the key
[to foil spammers, my address has been double rot-13 encoded]
It's probably because the capacitor across the ringer has long since
dried out. I believe it's a 47mf cap but it's printed right on the cap.
<snip my own post>
Thanks everyone for the suggestions. I'm off to look.
> What make (ie Western Electric, Automatic Electric, SC, ITT, etc)?
> What model (ie 500, 302, 80, etc.)?
500. One manufactured in 1970, the other in 196x (somone painted the last
> It's possible that the ringers are broken, or not wired correctly.
> Someone else pointed out thigns to check.
I will be looking at these other things.
I didn't think that those caps could dry out because they're paper or
plastic, not electrolytic. They have to be non-polarized so they're
usually not electrolytic.
----------------(from OED Mini-Dictionary)-----------------
PUNCTUATION - Apostrophe
Incorrect uses: (i) the apostrophe must not be used with a plural
where there is no possessive sense, as in ~tea's are served here~;
(ii) there is no such word as ~her's, our's, their's, your's~.
Confusions: it's = it is or it has (not 'belonging to it'); correct
uses are ~it's here~ (= it is here); ~it's gone~ (= it has gone);
but ~the dog wagged its tail~ (no apostrophe).
----------------(For the Apostrophe challenged)----------------
From a fully deputized officer of the Apostrophe Police!
Woops... I goofed. You're right but over time ever the paper caps
disintegrate. More than likely that's what happened.
Now in the old days, the didn't use paper - the cap on my 302 appears to
george <n...@nn.nn> wrote:
: I have two old rotary phones that I purchased because I wanted that nice