I fixed the phone!

A Kellogg / IT&T branded Western Electric 500 deskset wouldn’t dial out right because the dial wouldn’t return after a high number (if you dialed 0 it would stop spinning back at about 7).

I took the top off, then removed the dial from its holding bracket. I removed the clear plastic cover, and disassembled the entire gear thing and cleaned up all of the contact places. No surprize most were dirty some how and many were very black with spent oil. Cleaned all that up, used some PTFE-based lubricant I had for something else, reassembled it, and it didn’t work.

Spent the next ~2.5 hours fixing the problem I made when I bent the contacts while cleaning them. I had a Bell System WE500 off to the side to compare mine to. Finally, it works properly. I dialed the operator, my work-issued phone, a relative of mine, and the office I work at. Everything went fine.

Aside: a friend of mine calls these “spin phones”.

A keyboard failure is Nemesis

Last night, as I got home – about exactly but a little after mid night – my key board was dead. I was too tired from a late Fri day at work to bother so I used a spare on hand to do something I wanted to but then went to sleep.

Continue reading A keyboard failure is Nemesis

Fixed an HP LaserJet from 1998

So there was a printer I said I would fix that, besides being old and sitting on a shelf for maybe 5 or 10 years, would print but jam alot. First the old toner cartridge from 10+ years ago that was left in it all this time was replaced, then the duplexer stabilized, but after some time attempted use, it ended up jamming every sheet and was so annoying.

Disassembling it showed that the inside of the fuser roller (the one that actually heats up and burns the toner onto the paper) had a mess of burned toner. Cleaned that up and reassembled the toner. Still would always fold over the top left corner of the paper and jam just as it got to the fuser. Looking along the paper path where this fold would have been made, I noticed a blunt projection – that had been manufactured there – that might be doing it.

HP does not usually misdesign their printers, so I slept on it for about 2 nights and 1 day. Deciding I couldn’t make it less useful for them, I used a makeshift file to wear it down. I cleaned the area up and reassembled it and it has not jammed once for me after printing ~80 sheets from all the different paper sources. I give it back tomorrow in what I think is fully functioning shape.

How to get Windows 10 on a Toshiba Satellite A665 that won’t even boot

I went through some irritation to get Windows 10 installed on a discarded old laptop, so am putting it here for every one else.

Continue reading How to get Windows 10 on a Toshiba Satellite A665 that won’t even boot

Microsoft’s half-and-half troubleshooters

It’s another interface proofreading failure from Windows!

Introduced in, I think, Windows Vista and retained to date, troubleshooters are standardized appearance little programs that Windows runs to solve a few common issues, like networking and sound. The current list is at Windows Settings > Update & security > Troubleshoot.

Here a screenshots of two of them, with the same irritating mistake of not making the instruction text agree with the options presented:

MoreMisagreemt
Playing Audio [Windows Troubleshooter]. Select a device to troubleshoot / […]Select one of the listed devices or […] select I’m having problems with a different device. / Options: NVIDIA High Definition Audio is disabled, I don’t see my device listed
I do not have enough interest to install Vista or 7 in a virtual machine and see when the wording changed and which is the original. I first noticed this, with the same text problem, in the Devices and Printers troubleshooter on April 13, 2019. Aside for looking stupid, this can’t make accessibility sense. Anyone that uses a screen reader, let me know.

 

Back on the Chain-Gang; or, a Second Line-in-Waiting

It has been a while since I posted. I was on vacation. Now I have a bunch of stuff to scan and many screen shots from previous time to put up and comment on.

Continue reading Back on the Chain-Gang; or, a Second Line-in-Waiting

Just try and reinstall Windows on this

I have had, for some time, an “Irulu W10” tablet. After “refreshing” Windows 10 on it, then reinstalling Firefox, then generating a new profile for Firefox, then reinstalling Firefox, I now want to do a completely fresh reinstall of Windows 10. This is more of a trip than the MSI WindPad I had been using previously.

Continue reading Just try and reinstall Windows on this

Well that only took forever

I don’t like to hate on government agencies, especially the underfed and underfunded. This, however, is annoying to me…


The United State Government Publishing1 Office lets you buy books and pamphlets the various parts of the United States (but not the States themselves) have reduced to written form. I have bought several copies of the official text of the Constitution from them for ready reference.

Some publications just go to show that there is a certain amount of stodge that always goes with government, such as the bizzare choice of smiley face on this document about bridge inspections. It make it look a little untrustworthy to me, like “It’s OK, really (wink)”.

Anyway, I wanted badly to read this entertainingly titled Ebook on investment frauds from a sometime Commissioner of the CFTC with a mullet that is supposedly available free. Well:

  1. There are two entries for this media on the GPO’s website, for some reason.
  2. The PDF link in the one is bad.
  3. I can’t find the “Add to Cart” link mentioned, even if logged in to my account.

Anyway, after fussing around (I didn’t call them up, because when I reported a spelling mistake in their ecommerce user management, it took over a month to get a reply. And it still isn’t fixed. As before, underfunded) I found a link to the PDF and EPUB files on their… FTP server.

Anyway, go here: https://permanent.access.gpo.gov/gpo68567/


  1. Ex-Government Printing Office. I understand the name change, but the older one was headed by the supremely titled “Public Printer of the United States”. The new one is run by a “Director”. Boring!!