Author Topic: Dialing Star and Pound  (Read 1815 times)

Offline rlmeals

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Dialing Star and Pound
« on: May 11, 2012, 11:24:17 PM »
So I just bought a 554 wall phone.  (This is my first one, by the way; I just got a new cord wired in and got it working tonight!)  I thought I'd need to purchase a Rotatone for it, but I also wanted to make sure that pulse would be compatible with Verizon's network.  A little googling revealed a PDF of a user manual that showed all the short cuts for the calling features, like *69, etc.  It said that if you have a rotary phone, dial 1-1 for * and for pound you wait 4 seconds.  Therefore, *69 on a rotary would be 1-1-6-9.  So I called Verizon's customer service to verify this and to ask if it would also work for my voice mail feature.  He said that this is standard in the industry for rotary phones because companies know people still use them.  He said when I'm supposed to enter in my four digit pin for voice mail, just dial it and wait four seconds (to activate #) and it'll work. 

Well......I tried that today and it didn't work.  I can get to my VM two ways.  The first is that I can dial my own home phone number from my home phone line (or anywhere else), and when my outgoing message comes on I can dial *, then it will ask me to to enter my PIN followed by #.  I tried this using 1-1 for * and the outgoing message kept going as if the system wasn't recognizing the *.  So the second way is that there is a different phone number to access the VM system (it must be the same for the area because my MIL has the same number).  When you call from your own phone line, it asks you for your PIN followed by #.  When I called it and it asked for my PIN, I started dialing the PIN and then after the second or third number the VM system prompted me again to enter my PIN, as if the numbers I was dialing weren't registering in the system.

So I guess my question is this: has anyone else heard what the Verizon rep told me about?  Can y'all dial * and # without a converter?  Obviously, it's in their manual, and the representative answered my question quickly as if he was knowledgeable about it, so it seems like it should be so.  Here is the manual, maybe y'all can tell me what the deal is:  http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CHwQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww22.verizon.com%2FNROneRetail%2FNR%2Frdonlyres%2FDC265FC0-035B-4296-8DB3-4E75778FAC6E%2F0%2FUserGuide_CallingFeatureEast3.pdf&ei=-datT_2IGoqU2QXd_qzpCA&usg=AFQjCNGRULVV24RD9zHRgD_Io3DDQA5Lrw 

This should link to the page where you can open or save the PDF, and the pertinent info is at the top of page 2 under the section entitled "Before You Begin." If the link doesn't work, I found this on google by searching for "verizon user guide calling features" and it was the first result.

Thanks,
Rebecca

Offline twocvbloke

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2012, 11:55:45 AM »
I think that what's in the bottom left corner may explain the lack of rotary compatibility:

Quote
Note: Some calling services described in this guide may not be
available in your area and the availability of current services and
features is subject to change. To determine if a particular calling
service is available, please call your local Verizon Business Office
or visit www.verizon.com.

Which is understandable as some areas will have upgraded to more modern DTMF-only services, and other areas have Pulse-dial services still... :-\

The other issues could be the dial itself, if it's not running at a nominal 10 pulses per second (PPS), the hardware at the other end may not be fully recognising what your phone is dialling, there is a way to test it, but it's a bit fiddly if you're not used to the guts of a phone... :)

Though there is the option of sending the dial off to be refurbished and calibrated, courtesy of Steve Hilsz who is highly recommended here on the forum... :)

More info here:
http://www.navysalvage.com/

Offline rlmeals

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2012, 12:08:59 PM »
Code: [Select]
Note: Some calling services described in this guide may not be
available in your area and the availability of current services and
features is subject to change. To determine if a particular calling
service is available, please call your local Verizon Business Office
or visit www.verizon.com.

Yes, but I DID call Verizon, and they said it would work on my VM and the other call features.  So I just assumed they knew what they were talking about!!!

As far as the other stuff, that's something I will consider.  You said it was fiddly, but I'm pretty confident I can handle it.  Do you have a link with instructions I can see?  I'm usually pretty good at this kind of stuff.  Let me just put it this way...I've never been the kind of lady who can't set her VCR, ha ha!!!  I've always had a knack for this stuff...I used to take things apart as a child and put them back together just to see how they worked  ;)

Anyway, I'd like to give that a try.  Thanks so much for the reply!

Offline twocvbloke

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2012, 12:15:05 PM »
You sound a bit like me, taking things apart and reassembling them as a kid, I used to do that (well, occasionally reassembling them!!)... :D

Anyway, I came up with a way to test the dial speed a little while back:

http://www.classicrotaryphones.com/forum/index.php?topic=6216.msg76263#msg76263

All you need is an audio wire from say a broken set of headphones and just wire it to the phone's L1 and L2 connections, and then connect the other end to your computer's microphone port and then record the dialling in Audacity, as pictured in that post of mine... :)

Offline twocvbloke

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2012, 12:26:47 PM »
I just had a thought about Verizon saying that it should work, now, Verizon are part-owned by Vodafone, and over here in the UK, Vodafone are notorious for their "less than truthful" answers to questions, so, I think that the person you spoke to didn't actually know what he or she was talking about, or have knowledge of the telephone exchange hardware your line is connected to, so, it could just be a case of supplier error (as opposed to User error)...  ???

Online Brinybay

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2012, 03:29:47 PM »
So I just bought a 554 wall phone.  (This is my first one, by the way; I just got a new cord wired in and got it working tonight!)  ... So I called Verizon's customer service to verify this and to ask if it would also work for my voice mail feature.  He said that this is standard in the industry for rotary phones because companies know people still use them.  He said when I'm supposed to enter in my four digit pin for voice mail, just dial it and wait four seconds (to activate #) and it'll work.  ...

Well......I tried that today and it didn't work.  ...

Thanks,
Rebecca

I never trust what the person at customer service tell you.  They're just call center workers, not technicians, and only go by what their Lead told them, another call center worker with a title.  (I should know, I used to work in call centers).

Instead of trying to hassle with manipulating the dial to get # or *, consider another setup that you know will work.  A Rotatone is one, or consider getting a PBX that converts the pulse to tone.  (The PBX will come in handy as your collection grows, and it WILL GROW!)  I use one of my rotary phones in conjunction with a PBX and TT phone. 

Only problem with using a PBX is it still won't give you a # or * option, but I've found that the vast majority of the time, phone menus are rotary-friendly and only ask for numeric responses, in which case I can just dial it, or it gives another option, such as a voice response ("If you want [blank] say [blank], or stay on the line").  The only time I use the TT is when I want to access some of the features of my account, such as call blocking which I know is going to want # or *.

Another option if you have a cell phone is using an Xlink.  It acts like a Bluetooth for your cell phone, but has a modular port to plug in your rotary phone and you can dial out with your rotary on you cell account.  The cell phone acted like a Rotatone.  If I reached a phone menu that insisted on a # or *, I used the virtual keypad on the cell phone.
"If you get to thinkin' you're a person of some influence, try orderin' somebody else's dog around." - Old Farmer's Advice

Online poplar1

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2012, 03:50:26 PM »
There may be an option on Voice Mail that you can set up where you don't have to enter a password if you are calling from your own number. You would dial the "message desk" number rather than dialing your own number.
"Inside Heavy Parts Can Be Removed At No Extra Charge."....Turtle Lake Telephone Co. Catalog

Offline K1WI

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2012, 04:29:31 PM »
   Think I can answer this , most Verizon land line COs (but not all!) use 11 for * and 12 for # from rotary dial phones to activate features.  As to trying to retrieve voice messages , you would dial 12 then your pin then 12 with about 2 second pauses   ( # pin #  from touchtone line).
    Tried this from my home phone in RI  ( a 5E remote central office) and can use all features that are available   like *82  *96 etc .
   I believe , but could be wrong ,  that Western Electric 5E and Nortel DMS100/200 offices this works but those COs with DMS 10s won't allow this feature.

   Andy F   K1WI
Andy F    K1WI

Offline twocvbloke

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2012, 04:37:49 PM »
Somewhere in all these boxes of mine, I have one of these devices, meant to be a remote control for old answering machines, all it does is generate DTMF tones, and that's it, you hold it to the telephone's transmitter and dial away... :)

Dunno if you can get them easily these days, I can't even remember where I got mine (either a car boot sale or from ebay).... ???

Offline Owain

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2012, 05:13:39 PM »
Somewhere in all these boxes of mine, I have one of these devices, meant to be a remote control for old answering machines, all it does is generate DTMF tones, and that's it, you hold it to the telephone's transmitter and dial away... :)

Dunno if you can get them easily these days, I can't even remember where I got mine (either a car boot sale or from ebay).... ???

I remember trying to use one of those in anger on a 706 but the carbon mic was too much for it to work.

They pop up on ebay occasionally and seem to go from anything from unsold at 99p to 20.

Offline twocvbloke

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2012, 05:21:05 PM »
I think I tried mine on my black WE500 and it worked great (despite old batteries in the device), I have heard though that the GPO carbon mics are not really very good for transmitting such tones, so, could just be an excuse to upgrade to a 21A mic insert...  :D

Offline old_stuff_hound

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #11 on: May 14, 2012, 09:04:06 PM »
Somewhere in all these boxes of mine, I have one of these devices, meant to be a remote control for old answering machines, all it does is generate DTMF tones, and that's it, you hold it to the telephone's transmitter and dial away... :)

Dunno if you can get them easily these days, I can't even remember where I got mine (either a car boot sale or from ebay).... ???

There's an app for that! (Several, actually.) I've got a couple on my iPod touch. Haven't had much success, though -- volume too low or something....

Offline rtp129495

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #12 on: May 15, 2012, 10:41:41 AM »
I have an iphone app that does this quite well. its called pinger or text free depending where you look. it has real DTMF tones output on the speaker when dialing before you push "send" and it work if you hold it at the right angle to the reciever. i've been able to use it for my banking 1-800 number as well as voicemail!

Offline twocvbloke

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #13 on: May 15, 2012, 10:49:49 AM »
I've got a load of old Motorola mobile phones (GSM-types only) that emit DTMF tones when the keys are pressed, no need for any smartphone apps... :D

Offline old_stuff_hound

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Re: Dialing Star and Pound
« Reply #14 on: May 15, 2012, 01:28:46 PM »
I have an iphone app that does this quite well. its called pinger or text free depending where you look. it has real DTMF tones output on the speaker when dialing before you push "send" and it work if you hold it at the right angle to the reciever. i've been able to use it for my banking 1-800 number as well as voicemail!

The two I've got are "DialPad" and "DTMF Pad" -- both are iPhone/iPod Touch apps. As I said, I've not had much success with either. Perhaps the volume on the iPod's built-in speaker just isn't enough....