Old House Question

Old House Question

PostBy: brckwlt On: Sat Dec 05, 2009 4:15 pm

I have one of these on the front door and one at the top of the steps on the second floor. I think it might of been used to communicate from outside to inside, before doorbells?

Anyone know what it was used for?

The bottom part on the front door looks like it had a button you could push, but it appears to be broken.
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these two are from the top of the stairs on the second floor. there is a little flapper on it
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brckwlt
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Axeman-Anderson
Stove/Furnace Model: Rebuilt 1953 AA-130

Re: Old House Question

PostBy: WNY On: Sat Dec 05, 2009 4:32 pm

Probably a communication tube, (Like on a old ship) you talk into a long tube. Probably like an intercom.
maybe for the milk man to Ring in or whistle thru?
WNY
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Keystoker 90K, Leisure Line Hyfire I
Coal Size/Type: Rice
Stove/Furnace Make: Keystoker, LL & CoalTrol
Stove/Furnace Model: 90K, Hyfire I, VF3000 Soon

Re: Old House Question

PostBy: brckwlt On: Sat Dec 05, 2009 4:41 pm

WNY wrote:Probably a communication tube, (Like on a old ship) you talk into a long tube. Probably like an intercom.
maybe for the milk man to Ring in or whistle thru?



we tried that before and couldnt hear anything on the other end. maybe its broken or clogged?
brckwlt
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Axeman-Anderson
Stove/Furnace Model: Rebuilt 1953 AA-130


Re: Old House Question

PostBy: VigIIPeaBurner On: Sat Dec 05, 2009 4:48 pm

That's a nifty set up if it is truly an air tube communication system. Why don't you post a question on Kovel's antique site. You might get some insight on it's use there.
VigIIPeaBurner
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: Keystoker Koker
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Vermont Casting Vigilant II 2310
Other Heating: #2 Oil Furnace

Re: Old House Question

PostBy: brckwlt On: Sat Dec 05, 2009 4:52 pm

VigIIPeaBurner wrote:That's a nifty set up if it is truly an air tube communication system. Why don't you post a question on Kovel's antique site. You might get some insight on it's use there.



ill try that out late tonight or tomorrow. thanks for the tip
brckwlt
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Axeman-Anderson
Stove/Furnace Model: Rebuilt 1953 AA-130

Re: Old House Question

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Sat Dec 05, 2009 7:39 pm

Any ghosts at your place brck? I figure with all that history there is one or two in the woodwork.
coaledsweat
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Axeman Anderson 260M
Coal Size/Type: Pea

Re: Old House Question

PostBy: WNY On: Sat Dec 05, 2009 7:44 pm

can you try some compressed air thru it to see if anything comes out. Do it front the inside out, in case something does come out, won't blow it all over the room. Probably blocked with bugs, or something.

YEs, Speaking tubes or voice pipes with annunciator for Mail or Milk Delivers or visitors.


http://www.dself.dsl.pipex.com/MUSEUM/COMMS/voicepipe/voicepipe.htm
This link is broken, either the page no longer exists or there is some other issue like a typo.



http://www.myknobs.com/bb1218pb.html
This link is broken, either the page no longer exists or there is some other issue like a typo.
WNY
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: Keystoker 90K, Leisure Line Hyfire I
Coal Size/Type: Rice
Stove/Furnace Make: Keystoker, LL & CoalTrol
Stove/Furnace Model: 90K, Hyfire I, VF3000 Soon

Re: Old House Question

PostBy: wsherrick On: Sat Dec 05, 2009 8:05 pm

That is a speaking tube. Most old buildings in large cities had them. When I lived in Chicago(hated it) some places still had the speaking tubes still in service. There should have been a mouthpiece where the flapper is. You open the little flapper when you wish to speak or listen. The doorbell button is a standard electric door bell. Like most ideas from the 19th century. They work very well, you must speak into the mouthpiece much like a telephone and speak clearly. The person on the other end will hear you easily.
wsherrick
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: None
Hand Fed Coal Boiler: None
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: None
Hot Air Coal Stoker Stove: None
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Glenwood Base Heater, Crawford Base Heater
Hand Fed Coal Furnace: None
Baseburners & Antiques: Crawford Base Heater, Glenwood, Stanley Argand
Coal Size/Type: Chestnut, Stove Size

Re: Old House Question

PostBy: brckwlt On: Sun Dec 06, 2009 12:45 am

coaledsweat wrote:Any ghosts at your place brck? I figure with all that history there is one or two in the woodwork.



No ghost that i am aware of. the wife and i just watched a haunting in conneticut tonight. she was scared out of her mind. those were the only ghost ive seen so far ..
brckwlt
 
Stove/Furnace Make: Axeman-Anderson
Stove/Furnace Model: Rebuilt 1953 AA-130

Re: Old House Question

PostBy: Wood'nCoal On: Sun Dec 06, 2009 9:13 am

coaledsweat wrote:Any ghosts at your place brck? I figure with all that history there is one or two in the woodwork.


They're here.
Wood'nCoal
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: 1959 EFM 350
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Harman Magnafire Mark I
Coal Size/Type: Rice and Chestnut
Other Heating: Fisher Fireplace Insert

Re: Old House Question

PostBy: samhill On: Fri Jan 29, 2010 9:12 am

I`ll take a burger, fries & a coke please.
samhill
 
Hot Air Coal Stoker Furnace: keystoker 160
Hand Fed Coal Stove: hitzer 75 in garage
Stove/Furnace Make: keystoker/hitzer
Stove/Furnace Model: koker 160/ hitzer 75

Re: Old House Question

PostBy: sah On: Mon Sep 10, 2012 1:56 pm

brckwit, your picture shows exactly what I have in my 1930 house--down to what you call the little flapper. The kitchen end is intact, but the area on the wall upstairs where it should connect has been covered over. (This was not done well, so I can tell exactly where it should be.) My questions: Did you find a way to repair yours? Did you find a source that sells parts? I would love to find one of the outer parts to make my speaking tube intercom whole again.
And.....the way we used it when I was young: first you blew into the little hole without opening the flapper (This made a high pitched whistle in order to get the attention of the person on the second floor.) and then you opened the tube using the flapper and delivered your message. (Our messages were mostly things like, "Hurry up. You're going to miss the bus!"
I realize this is a reply to an old post, but I'm hoping to hear from someone......
sah