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Dial Maintenance and Repair. Beginners?

Started by FABphones, December 04, 2022, 07:31:27 PM

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FABphones

To anyone contemplating their first dial repair, the teleplay guides (there are several, link below or use the 'search' facility at top of page), are a great introduction. As nice as it is to be able to send a dial away for repair, some of us don't have that luxury, or prefer to learn to do it ourselves.

For us, the detailed info guides by teleplay are great tutorials for many reasons. Those of us who want to learn how to correctly clean, adjust, dismantle, rebuild or perform any other form of dial maintenance or testing, can do so with confidence knowing that every step of the process has been documented and photographed by teleplay meticulously. And not just one dial, many types of dial.

With regard to workspace, whether working on dials (or a complete telephone), a vast area isn't required. Just a clear area set aside, tools as per the guides - and for dials an ice tray - a great teleplay tip for keeping everything in order when removing components.

One thing I learnt early on (and not just when working on dials) is keep the item being worked on over the work surface. That way should any part fall it hasn't got far to go and can more easily be found. With this in mind I also have several coverings for the worksurface. Towelling is good as it offers protection, 'grip', and helps prevent small parts rolling away. I also have a thicker padded cushion which is about 30"x30" and 1" deep. This is great for arm comfort too.

Magnifying glasses I have several of - wouldn't be without them - I have even been known to place one above another; especially useful when taking close up photographs. Some also have LED lighting.

It's a great feeling when that first dial is cautiously taken apart and successfully put back together again. Study the guides, study the dial. You can do it! :)

Find your dial here:
http://www.classicrotaryphones.com/forum/index.php?board=25.0

A collector of  'Monochrome Phones with Sepia Tones'   ...and a Duck!
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Vintage Phones - 10% man made, 90% Tribble
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Contempra

For me, the most complicated dials to repair and adjust are the Automatic Electric dials. (AE).
Denis

TelePlay

Quote from: Contempra on December 04, 2022, 10:22:15 PMFor me, the most complicated dials to repair and adjust are the Automatic Electric dials. (AE).

Interesting.

Once I realized taking the contact leaves pile up off an AE dial was the first thing to do, the rest of the dial was much easier to take apart, clean and reassemble. The main spring is right there in the open, the governor parts fully removable and carefully watching how the dialing ratchet parts under the finger wheel interact makes putting the mainspring back in quite simple.

I can do an AE dial in half the time it takes to clean and lube a WE dial, probably due to how WE hides their mainspring in a tunnel held together with a nut on the mainspring gear which requires extra attention when interfacing it with the gear train, and setting the proper gear mesh distances.

As for adjusting dial speed, WE dials are easier.

Contempra

TelePlay , maybe it's also the fact that I've only done two in several years.. I don't really like them, I don't really like the feeling of spinning the wheel with its weird noise :) I have some three ' Dials ' on two different models; My Starlight model and my two other identical models, but one is cream-colored and the other more common, is black.

But regardless, I always enjoy cleaning, lubricating and adjusting. However , I much prefer a WE .. These ones I always take pleasure in completely dismantling them and redoing them except of course to change the ' network ' . On the other hand, I never knew how many turns the central spring should be. but I'm still successful and I've never had any problems making and receiving calls to date. On the other hand, I have never disassembled a 'touch-tone dial', I never dared to do so.

Thank you for your answer ;) I like this forum and it's always a pleasure to come and read what is said there :) I was almost two years without coming there and it took more than a week to read the many unread pages: )
Denis

TelePlay

Quote from: Contempra on December 05, 2022, 08:47:31 AM. . . I never knew how many turns the central spring should be. but I'm still successful and I've never had any problems making and receiving calls to date.

Of all the dials I've done, regardless of manufacturer, the main spring has always been pre-set at 1.25 to 1.5 turns.

Determined that by counting the number of turns the spring had after removing the dial stop (and holding onto the spring when releasing the stop to allow the main spring to release all of its energy, unwind, while counting the turns and partial turns).

When dialing "0," that would put about 2 to 2.3 turns into the main spring, plenty of energy to allow the governor to spin fast enough to properly control the dial's pulsing speed when the finger wheel is released.

Contempra

Quote from: TelePlay on December 05, 2022, 02:07:04 PMOf all the dials I've done, regardless of manufacturer, the main spring has always been pre-set at 1.25 to 1.5 turns. Determined that by counting the number of turns the spring had after removing the dial stop (and holding onto the spring when releasing the stop to allow the main spring to release all of its energy, unwind, while counting the turns and partial turns).


Hoo boy! thanks. the last one that I completely reassembled the 'dial' I made 3 complete turns :) Thank you for the advice because it will be useful to me in the future. But I can say that the one I did 3 times on it, it works wonderfully and I have no problems with it, no wrong number except for the time I had placed the "CAM" wrong Oh my! I'm not telling you! :D
Denis

TelePlay

Quote from: Contempra on December 05, 2022, 07:45:16 PM. . . the last one that I completely reassembled the 'dial' I made 3 complete turns . . .

That would make the governor brake pads work much harder with all that extra energy in the spring. I'm surprised you got 3 turns into the spring, the 3 turns didn't bend or straighten out the spring anchor and your governor didn't start smoking (kidding on the last point).

The dial will work fine until the governor brake pads wear down and stop working.

Do you have the ability to accurately test you dial speed to see if it is increasing over  use/time?

Contempra

#7
QuoteI'm surprised you got 3 turns into the spring, the 3 turns didn't bend or straighten out the spring anchor and your governor didn't start smoking (kidding on the last point).

Laughing Out Loud !


QuoteThe dial will work fine until the governor brake pads wear down and stop working.

Oups...

QuoteDo you have the ability to accurately test you dial speed to see if it is increasing over  use/time?

Absolutely not :(




Denis

poplar1

http://www.classicrotaryphones.com/forum/index.php?topic=21463.msg244793#msg244793

One can use an analog clock with a second hand to quickly check a dial. Simply dial 0 and wait for the second had to move. As soon as it does, release the finger wheel and watch to see if the dial returns to zero before (fast dial) or after (slow dial) the next second ticks off. Wait a few seconds before releasing the dial to the "test" second tick can be anticipated and the dial released right on the tick. With a little practice, it is easy to do as a fast and dirty assessment of a dial.  (teleplay)
"C'est pas une restauration, c'est une rénovation."--François Martin.

TelePlay

Quote from: poplar1 on December 08, 2022, 11:20:02 AMOne can use an analog clock with a second hand to quickly check a dial . . .  (teleplay)

. . . and that would be one of those $5 at Walmart one AA battery operated 9" diameter clocks. They have a long second had which makes seeing it begin to move and stop much easier (than a wrist watch) while listening to the spinning dial come to a normal stop.