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You never know what you will find at the bates motel


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#1 smpl

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 10:07 PM

Recently, I stayed at the Viking Motel in Wilmington, VT. I am pretty sure the owners fundamentally reject technology, the front desk looked like it came from the 1920's, they had some ancient typewriter there, no computer, and no modern phones. I checked in (yes, they had my reservation handwritten on paper) and got in my room (#6.) The first thing to notice in the room was a model 2500 desk phone with a note below it that said:

 

"Use a phone card for long distance. Local and toll-free are free, dial 9."

 

This is where the fun began. Picked up the phone and dialled 9, got a real outside dial tone, it was quite crackled.

 

10-10-321 allowed you to dial long distance and international at Mr. and Mrs. Bates' expense!

 

Found the local ANAC in minutes too: 200-222-2222.

 

I would definitely recommend the Viking Motel to any phone phreak! Lots of fun is to be had.



#2 systems_glitch

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 09:22 AM

Good stuff! Any idea what they're running as a PBX?

 

There's a local independent telco around here who, in addition to providing phone and Internet service, rebuilds 2500s and their 1A2 cousins. Must be a fair number of them still in use.



#3 smpl

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 05:45 PM

Good stuff! Any idea what they're running as a PBX?

 

There's a local independent telco around here who, in addition to providing phone and Internet service, rebuilds 2500s and their 1A2 cousins. Must be a fair number of them still in use.

No Idea what they use for a PBX, except:

  • Internal dial tone was 440 Hz
  • You couldn't dial room to room, no was voicemail available
  • Pulses were not passed through to the outside line
  • Practically the only thing you could dial when picking up the phone was "9"
  • Waiting on the inside dial tone for approx. 20 seconds gave you a warble

I think the local telco was Fair Point.



#4 ThoughtPhreaker

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Posted 08 March 2014 - 01:59 PM

Very nice! If the warble we're talking about sounds like this - 602-271-3660, it was probably an Avaya Merlin or Definity. Both can be pretty small installations, but the Merlin maxes out at something like 100 lines. A Definity can get to be the size of a small end office if you really want it to. If they don't have any computers, I'd put my money on a Merlin; the Definity needs a computer - or at least a dumb terminal anyway, to administer it.

 

If you have the PBX actually put you on a line from the CO, the Definity will do something pretty interesting. Instead of just spilling your digits directly onto the line, it'll catch your digits, inspect them, and then forward them if it's allowed in the dialplan. You can tell because there's a pretty big delay (maybe a second or so) between when you dial something and when you hear the dialtone disappear.

 

 

There's a local independent telco around here who, in addition to providing phone and Internet service, rebuilds 2500s and their 1A2 cousins. Must be a fair number of them still in use.

 

Not like spare parts are in short supply http://photos.shaney...-2/P9280011.jpg . That's awesome people are still servicing these phones, though. The way they're built, I wouldn't be at all surprised if they're working another fifty years for now.



#5 systems_glitch

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Posted 08 March 2014 - 03:10 PM

Not like spare parts are in short supply http://photos.shaney...-2/P9280011.jpg . That's awesome people are still servicing these phones, though. The way they're built, I wouldn't be at all surprised if they're working another fifty years for now.

 

Holy crap, that's a huge pile of phones! All of our house phones are WE 2500 derivatives or Trimlines. Cheap and fun to fix.



#6 ThoughtPhreaker

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Posted 09 March 2014 - 06:57 PM

I use a 2500 as my main phone myself. For the most part, it's a fantastic phone. If you make a lot of calls though, the touchtone pad really starts to show wear; I've had to bend the contacts back into place quite a bit.

 

By the way (sorry, I know I'm really veering into off topic territory here), is there any way to increase the gain on these pads? One of the frequencies is at a borderline acceptable level (-25dB), so sometimes IVRs or whatnot don't always recognize that I'm trying to send touchtones.



#7 systems_glitch

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Posted 09 March 2014 - 09:23 PM

By the way (sorry, I know I'm really veering into off topic territory here), is there any way to increase the gain on these pads? One of the frequencies is at a borderline acceptable level (-25dB), so sometimes IVRs or whatnot don't always recognize that I'm trying to send touchtones.

 

It's just a bunch of coils and switches with a single-transistor oscillator, so if you're having gain problems it's probably due to low talk battery or aged capacitors. If you want you can replace the mechanical keypads with an electronic keypad from a Stromberg-Carlson 2500 lookalike. They're IC based so there will probably be less change in the output frequency/levels over time, too.



#8 smpl

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 10:08 PM

Back on topic, I was able to send very relaxed DTMF tones and the PBX would still accept them. Set the phone on the table and used my android phone to generate DTMF a few metres away and it picked up every single digit (even when my Nexus 5 was about 30% volume). Incredible.

 

The PBX had to have been doing some filtering on the dial tone when dialling. Oddly enough, on a room a friend of mine stayed in, pressing a "1" on the outside dial tone immediately dropped him to a warble. (yes, it did sound like 602-271-3660), however, there was no delay on digit presses.

 

The 2500s weren't WE. Front of them were labelled with "starplus"



#9 dmine45

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Posted 11 March 2014 - 06:35 PM

I go up near that way on business trips every few months. If I ever get to stay over a weekend, I see a side trip to Vermont! :)



#10 smpl

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Posted 11 March 2014 - 07:15 PM

I go up near that way on business trips every few months. If I ever get to stay over a weekend, I see a side trip to Vermont! :)

If you do, I might advise you find other methods of taking a shower...






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