Maybe interesting toy in junk shop...

Chuck Guzis cclist at
Sat Jul 2 22:30:21 CDT 2016

On 07/02/2016 07:32 PM, Bill Sudbrink wrote:
> I was poking around a junk shop that I visit from time to time and I
> saw a toy.  It didn't really strike me as that interesting when I saw
> it but I've been wondering about it since I left the place this
> morning.  The thing was mostly red plastic with a cardboard bottom.
> It had a two-prong AC cord and a four prong "old fashioned" telephone
> jack.  It had two big buttons and a spool of paper tape mounted on
> the front.  The tape was about 1/4 inch wide.  I call it a toy
> because it had that sort of feel about it.  It was not clearly
> labeled as such.  It was also styled in a way that suggested late
> 1960s to me. The whole thing was the size of a small shoe box.  I 
> can't find anything like it in google searches.  I wonder if it might
> have some early modem like device in it.  Does this description "ring
> a bell" with anyone?

Sounds like a late-model Kilburg Dialaphone.  1960-ish.  Early models
directly operated the dial of the desk telephone--later ones just pulsed
the line appropriately--something that AT&T objected to and that Kilburg
unsuccessfully fought.  This was years before the Carterfone episode.
Memory was a paper tape with printed names on it.

That particular unit sounds like a very rare piece of kit.

Am I getting close?


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