Have you ever used a Rotary Dial Telephone?

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default Have you ever used a Rotary Dial Telephone?

Post by citrine on Wed Jun 18, 2008 5:47 pm

My uncle and aunt live in an old house that has a black rotary dial telephone. Their kids grew up with it and think nothing about it, but when they bring their friends over, they all want to see it. It really works, mostly.

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Post by melodiccolor on Wed Jun 18, 2008 5:53 pm

Oh how quickly technology has changed! They were the state of the art when I was a child. I remember when push button phones first came out and how much more convenient and quicker they were.

Since then of course there were those clunky car phones of the 80's, the first usable pc's, those old heavy cell phones of just 10 years ago; the changes go on and accelerate, until someone asks just what you did! lol!

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Post by Reamsie on Wed Jun 18, 2008 7:01 pm

[color=darkblue][b]Yes, we had one when I was very young (early 70's). It was a huge deal when we got the push botton in the late 70's. Laughing

Oh, and don't forget Mel, eight track tapes! My parents also had one of those.
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Post by SimplyNan on Wed Jun 18, 2008 7:10 pm

Yep, we had one of those when I was a kid, too. And, at that time, people like shared lines, too. Actually those rotary phones are much sturdier than anything made nowadays. Ah, planned obsolesence.
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Post by Nucky on Wed Jun 18, 2008 7:19 pm

Yeah, there was a conventional rotary phone in my house as late as the early 80s. Now there's a working antique pay rotary phone from the early 60s in my basement.

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Post by melodiccolor on Wed Jun 18, 2008 7:36 pm

Blue, do you really want to start on old technology of other kinds? Laughing There were so many; reel to reel audio tape and film; analog video discs and beta video tapes; records; cassett tapes--soon to be forgotten!--TI 99A; kodak instamatic cameras; the list goes on. And the funny thing is I remember when all of this stuff was the hot new must have tech. that everyone ooohed and awed over. whee!

Nan, a lot of people will agree with you on the sturdiness and longevity of old equipment when compared with today's increasingly rapid planned obsolesence.

Nucky, I know of others who collect old phones; you are in good company on that one.

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Post by Nucky on Wed Jun 18, 2008 8:29 pm

I heard that 8-tracks actually have better sound quality than cassettes, is that true? I find that strange because 8-tracks became obsolete much faster.

Also, for the first couple plays and with a really good turntable and stereo system, vinyl records can bring much better sound quality than CDs.

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Post by TheStargazer on Wed Jun 18, 2008 10:54 pm

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Post by Justin Passing on Thu Jun 19, 2008 4:27 am

Geez - now I really feel like a fossil. I have quite a few working rotary phones, as well as reel-to-reel players, cassette decks, turntables, an 8mm film projector, TI-99 computers, an Amiga 500, a Commodore 64 with cassette load, one or two dot matrix printers, an IBM selectric typewriter, antique radio microphones, mixing boards, tube amplifiers, and all sorts of assorted crap.

And FYI Nucky, anyone who says that the fidelity of 8-tracks was better than cassette is nuts. It was lousy, although it could have been similar to cassette I suppose. The problem was moving the tape head from track to track was a terrible idea, and alignment problems prevented them from taking full advantage of the space on the magnetic tape. It couldn't be better than cassette - they had the same space available on the tape but couldn't utilize it as effectively.

As for the longevity of old stuff, old phones were amazing. Truly amazing. I once found an old pay phone sitting in the pool at the bottom of a waterfall. Despite hitting the rocks from at least 40 feet up and sitting in the water for who knows how long, the thing still worked once you hooked it up, and the cash box was just as impregnable as ever. Now that's tough.
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Post by Little Sister on Thu Jun 19, 2008 9:08 am

Yes! And I miss my rotary phone so much. It was better than any other phone I've had.

I do have an unusual story about my phone though. If you've read it before, please bear with...

I slept with my phone by my bed on the floor, because often I'd be talking to friends before I'd drift off to sleep. One night as I was starting to nod off, a brilliant bom idea struck me, as they sometimes do, and I couldn't wait to write it down so I wouldn't forget. So I got out of bed to find glasses, pen, and notebook, and as I did so, I hopped right on top of the phone. Somehow the metal dialer stop on the phone hooked into the bottom of my foot and I couldn't get the thing off; the phone was stuck. All I could think of was the T.V. show Get Smart, and I thought I'd done them one better. Instead I had my own foot-phone rather than a shoe-phone. Eventually I was able to pry the thing off, but not without thinking I'd better "Get Smart" and not leave my phone on the floor.
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Post by reb on Thu Jun 19, 2008 3:42 pm

rotary? you mean the ones where you cranked 'em to get the operator? i'm not saying 'when i was real young', but we had one of those crank the side handle ones; if you picked up, most of the time, two old women would be yakking....wait a half hour, pick it up again, and the same old biddies would be yakking about their doilies or some such yaya....ever time the thing would ring, mother's half wit dog would run yipping around the house...when we left him in one time, he trashed the house, cause the phone rang....chewed the cord in two, also...lol! i had a relative with the old phones like you see in the movies, with the 'funnel mouthpiece' and big wooden box, all mounted on the wall....

i had a dial phone (which most of you seem to think is ancient) until about 1990...it worked, and never quit...i cannot think fo rthe life of me why i got rid of it....Sad
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Post by waterdragon7 on Thu Jun 19, 2008 10:50 pm

Yes I remember the rotary-dial phone my parents had as a child. And a big, heavy black-and-white, vacuum-tube television set. Also remember watching 'Car 54, Where Are You?' with my parents as a child on that old set.
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Post by Little Sister on Fri Jun 20, 2008 2:56 pm

Do you remember party-lines?
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Post by melodiccolor on Fri Jun 20, 2008 3:05 pm

I sure do.

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Post by adain on Sat Jul 05, 2008 5:25 am

Still have them in certain parts of Australia and NZ
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Post by melodiccolor on Sat Jul 05, 2008 4:31 pm

I believe they still have them in a few of the most rural parts of the United States too.

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