I have somewhere between 6 and 10 phones plugged in at any given time.
Only 2 ring, a legacy of the old "illegal phone" days when Ma Bell
would look for ringers. Everyone knew you disconnected the bell on
your "illegal phones".
I only have one phone that is not W/E.
Well, they probably COULD have, if they wanted to have a guy measure the
draw on the local loop when it rang, but it is highly unlikely they
would ever bother, unless the Phone Police thought you were a scammer
for other reasons.
And don't forget- pre '73, it was hard to even BUY a non Ma Bell phone,
for most people. It was simply a non-issue. When Ma abandoned all the
old rental phones in place a few years ago, I was hoping more would show
up at garage sales, but they are few and far between, the last few
years. Most of my WE collection is starting to be early 70s or older on
the internals, so they are starting to go flakey on me. (What modern
phone will go 40 years?)
When they would check it is if you had a trouble call on the line.
They knew what is was supposed to be and they would test to see if
that was right. It gives you a real good idea if the wire is laying in
a puddle or something.
On Sun, 19 Oct 2008 13:04:50 -0500, "Steve Barker DLT"
They could tell how many ringers you had connected. We just
disconnected the bell on our stolen phones, they were all Bell System
property in those days. You could buy Stromberg Carlson phones in the
secondary market and there were some euro phones out there that would
work but all W/E phones were lost or stolen. A lot simply got "lost"
(not recovered on a disconnect order). That was when it was good to
know a phone guy. I knew several.
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