Author Topic: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s  (Read 410 times)

Offline markosjal

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Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« on: February 13, 2018, 01:04:36 PM »
I was curious if anyone had any info on this.

I worked at a cable TV company in the 1980s and we had a tie line over the 2 way cable between offices.Portland office had an Expanded local calling area (Pacific Northwest Bell), but Gresham Office was rural and had a very limited local calling area (These were GTE Lines). WHen I wanted to call certain locations from Gresham office it was in many cases Long distance so by dialing "5" I got a dial tone from the Portland office and could call Beaverton as a local call by way of the pacific Nortghwest Bell lines in Portland.

I was always however quite curious of the technology behind this. I remember the systems was at times problematic and there seemed to be nobody with any knowledge of how it really worked other than 2 black boxes doing the work.

I also remember it was controversial when installed because it was a way of "cheating" the phone company.

It most probably was only modulated over the cable TV line. Any info on what this might have been called?

Mark
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Offline AE_Collector

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2018, 03:53:22 PM »
So you were at one of your offices that had some sort of a PBX where dialing 5 was a trunk to the other telephone exchange or possibly access to a line at one of your offices at that location. We (Telco) did that for customers, a FX (Foreign Exchange) Line. I even recall a FX line at a customer in Burnaby BC (Vancouver suburb) that was Dial Tone out of Bellingham Washington. The PBX used this line as the first attempt for LD calls to the USA as it was back in the 80’s when daytime LD was about $1 a minute.

The actual technology used if your cable company was creating the trunk over its facilities probably wasn’t complicated to do. But I have no idea. Ultimately the dial tone at the far end was likely from one of your PBX’s there or a CO line there at your office.

Terry

Offline markosjal

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2018, 05:11:27 PM »
Yes it was the PBX at the other end . You could dial any extension as well. This was something Rogers was tinkering with back then

5 , 9 number
or
5, 9 extension

worked both ways the same way

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Offline AE_Collector

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2018, 05:58:51 PM »
Are you sure it wasn't just 5 and the extension OR 5 and 9 for outside line plus the number?

Terry

Offline markosjal

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2018, 10:25:35 AM »
AE Collector , yes you are correct. I posted it incorrectly
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Offline Dave203

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2018, 03:41:39 PM »

I really enjoyed this story  :)


Offline kb3pxr

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2018, 08:54:29 PM »
You had a private carrier network (think of how Sprint and MCI evolved) on the CATV infrastructure. Yes, it was (and technically still is where I live) a violation of telephone company tariffs, most of the rules aren't heavily policed. For example, when was the last time someone's service was disconnected for profane language?

Offline markosjal

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2018, 11:48:12 PM »
I really enjoyed this story  :)

I want to go to the Dial Tone Lounge!
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Offline markosjal

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #8 on: March 07, 2018, 11:49:30 PM »
You had a private carrier network (think of how Sprint and MCI evolved) on the CATV infrastructure. Yes, it was (and technically still is where I live) a violation of telephone company tariffs, most of the rules aren't heavily policed. For example, when was the last time someone's service was disconnected for profane language?

It was NOT a private carrier , it was the company's own deal. It was Rogers Cable TV when they operated in Portland
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Offline AE_Collector

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #9 on: March 08, 2018, 12:04:47 AM »
Is the name Rogers just coincidence that one of Canada’s major telecom / cable TV providers is Rogers?


Offline markosjal

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #10 on: March 08, 2018, 02:01:58 AM »
Same one! I worked for them in the 80s when they were in the USA . In the late 80s , or early 90s they sold out all USA interests to invest in cellular in Canada. Uncle Ted found a way to screw most of us out of retirement on his way out! Nice guy
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Offline CanadianGuy

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2018, 04:38:30 PM »
My first cell phone was with Cantel AT&T, which became Rogers here in the late 90s I think.

Offline AE_Collector

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Re: Phone over 2 way cable 1980s
« Reply #12 on: March 15, 2018, 11:25:52 AM »
When cell service first started in Canada....1987 (ish), Cantel was the competitor allowed in to compete with the Incumbents. I worked for a wholly owned subsidiary of BC Tel (from 1975-1990) called Canadian Telephones & Supplies Ltd. CT&S for short or often referred to as .... CanTel. Nothing to do with the cell phone Cantel. Cantel Cell Company got set up and quickly slammed into the inability to register the name in BC as CT&S had several names registered including that one. I knew the comptroller of CT&S who would only say that the “got a handsome price” for releasing the registration on that name!

Terry
« Last Edit: March 15, 2018, 11:36:17 AM by AE_Collector »