Thought For The Day

Thought For The Day:

Sign on the side of the road: "On This Exact Spot on July, 24, 1876, Nothing Happened."

Retirement is great except you don't get a day off.

Telephone. An object which rings when the only person at home is taking a bath.

One man's telephone is another man's wrong number.

Telephone. A device that makes it easy to distinguish voices and hard to extinguish them.

Telephone, n, An invention of the devil which abrogates some of the advantages of making a disagreeable person keep his distance.

A telephone pole never strikes a vehicle except in self defence.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Donnybrook Telephone Exchange

Today I found out where the original Donnybrook telephone exchange.  Apparently a telephone switchboard was installed in the old Indian shop in the village of Donnybrook in the 1920's.  When the shop was to be rebuilt the Post Office took the telephone switchboard out and Mrs Mingay announced to the telephone guys that she was going to have the old switchboard.  They said no, but she continued.  So they said they needed to take the switchboard to Pietermaritzburg to remove some parts from it.  Two weeks later they delivered the switchboard to her home.  I'll arrange to see this old switchboard sometime soon and will post some pics on this site for all to see.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Wireless Telephone


Berg Telephone & Telegraph in association with Huge Telecom

  • No contract
  • No set up fee
  • No installation fee
  • Free delivery
  • R99-00 + VAT per month

Contact Rob at 074-1389315 at BT&T for the Underberg district.



  • Speed dial
  • Caller ID
  • Hands-free calling
  • Call waiting
  • Send and receive SMS
  • 200 phone-book entries
  • Clock/alarm clock
  • Ringtones
  • Clock
  • Call barring
  • Call forwarding
  • Built in FM radio
  • Battery backup
Service Features
  • Free voice-mail
  • Free itemised billing
  • No long-term contract
  • Calls to and from all networks
  • Leading tier-one wireless network infrastructure
  • Easily transfer phone between premises
  • One number for life
  • ICASA licensed equipment

Friday, July 20, 2012


I must apologise for the problem caused by the "Privacy" logo on the site.  It suddenly decided that it was the carrier of viruses.  I have removed it from this site so you should not have a "warning " when you enter the site. I do assure you that any information on this site remains here and is NEVER passed on to any third party.  I do not ask for your personal details as this site is for your entertainment and interests only.

Many thanks.  Rob Stayt


Our telephone is dead. Almost six weeks ago there was a squawking and beeping from our Telkom phone at around three o'clock in the morning. The the death rattle of our land-line. The copper miners had been at work.  Four weeks later Telkom replaced the open wires just outside the village where they had been stolen.  We had our telephone line back.  We took advantage to call friends and relatives "Quickly, before the lines get stolen again".  Two days later we had a high wind. During this wind storm we heard the telephone once again announce it's demise.  Again, no service.  That was nearly two weeks ago.

Tuesday we went to a presentation on satellite telephones.  Expensive?  Damn right it is.  Definitely not in an old pensioner's budget.  A plan?  Yes!  I spoke to a fellow who represents another company supplying GSM telephones.  I have ordered one for our home.  This system shares all cellular networks, choosing the best quality signal to connect to the called subscriber.  The phone should be here next week.  The costs?  R99-00 per month plus calls.  Calls? R1-22/minute to cell numbers and R0-44/minute to Telkom landlines.  Cheaper than Telkom rates!  So we are going to try this.  There is no fixed term contract, so if you don't like it, give them one month's notice and they'll take it away.  If you do like it, no set-up or installation fees.  Just R99-00 + vat per month and calls!  Now that to me seems a pretty good replacement for the Telkom line..  Let's see.  I'll keep you updated.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Empty Pole Syndrome

We live in exciting times in South Africa.  A copper mine has opened in the Underberg district.  Two weeks ago a few kilometres of telephone cable was stolen from the district leaving several subscribers without a telephone service.

There are some scrap dealers who will buy and sell anything to make a buck.  They are receiving stolen Telkom property without so much as a "Where did this come from?"  The perpetrators come into the district in the dead of night and cut the cables.  They use a form of cable stripper to slice the cable sheath along it's length and then pull the copper conductors out.  The conductors are then put into a fire which burns off the plastic insulation.  The burned copper is then taken to their "Honest" scrap dealer who then sells it on  for reprocessing.

Just imagine, the wiring in your car may have hung from telephone poles outside your house!

Well I have got myself set up on Skype with an account and an international telephone number.  We are all going to need some sort of backup for our comms.  I have been trying to organise a radio telephone link system  for the farmers in the district but have been informed that I would never get licensed by ICASA.  So what are Telkom going to do about this theft?  Nothing!  Subscribers are being told that their telephone service is discontinued as the wires have been stolen and they can apply for the 8TA Telkom cellular service!  What a wonderful service provider.  Of course there is a satellite telephone service but do you really want to pay R10 000-00 or so for installation and then R300-00 per month before you make calls?  Nah!  I'll go with Skype or, if I can, set up a VOIP telephone service here for the local community (I have the software already and just need ADSL, which I know I won't get on the farm.)

Viva free enterprise!  Snatch a kilo of copper today!

Saturday, February 4, 2012


I am wondering just what this "Thing" is.  Please have a look at the picture and if you know what it is, please let me know via e-mail.

If you come up with a funny, fantastic, ludicrous idea and description, let me know too.  We need a little fun on this blog.


Handset required for this old Siemens magneto phone.

One of our ladies has this poor old Siemens magneto phone and requires a handset for it.
The details under the base of the phone are:
FG.tist.188  31U3

If anyone can help please contact e-mail me.  I shall forward on any replies from all. Many thanks.

I am still looking for a user's manual for the red pay phone.  It is a CKT 676 and needs to work for a living.  So a manual on programming the unit is essential.  I have tried contacting the manufacturers but to no avail.

Let me know anyone who has on of these! Thanks.