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Other Vintage Household Electrical or Electromechanical Items For discussions about other vintage (over 25 years old) electrical and electromechanical household items. See the sticky thread for details.

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Old 14th Mar 2020, 7:04 pm   #21
merlinmaxwell
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

I remember when I was just a kid the doctors lamps, there where three about 1 1/4 inch diameter made of glass, lit by a proper bulb and with a chrome ring holding each of them. Just one of those things that stick in your mind, I (still do) regarded them as beautiful. Modern plastic and LEDs just doesn't cut it, it's like the difference twixt a plastic and glass beer vessel.
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Old 15th Mar 2020, 12:39 am   #22
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

As I child I can remember seeing lamp units in large department stores, comprising a row of about six different coloured bulbs. If a particular shop assistant were needed, their specific pattern of lights could be lit, for example, "red-and-blue" could mean "Mr Jones", or "yellow,white and green" "Miss Smith". Six bulbs in any combination in groups of one to six could provide quite a large number of permutations,
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Old 15th Mar 2020, 2:43 am   #23
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

I have seen lights above supermarket check-outs that are red or green for open and closed with blue manager required.
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Old 15th Mar 2020, 10:24 am   #24
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

Quote:
Originally Posted by merlinmaxwell View Post
I remember when I was just a kid the doctors lamps, there where three about 1 1/4 inch diameter made of glass, lit by a proper bulb and with a chrome ring holding each of them.
We had those at school outside the Headmaster's office, although I never remember them being used. They fascinated me, nonetheless! Three vertically-mounted indicator discs with lamps behind in a rectangular surface-mounted box.


Quote:
Originally Posted by merlinmaxwell View Post
Just one of those things that stick in your mind, I (still do) regarded them as beautiful. Modern plastic and LEDs just doesn't cut it, it's like the difference twixt a plastic and glass beer vessel.
When I was a kid the doc had an annunciator panel in the waiting room with wagging flags and bell, which 'sowed the seeds' as it were... I couldn't wait to have to go to the doctor so I could gaze at it!
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Old 15th Mar 2020, 10:58 am   #25
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

At the 1960s-built Birmingham Dental School when I was there in the 1990s, each treatment cubicle had three coloured indicators mounted on the top of the partition. Standard Bakelite and translucent plastic affairs with MES lamps. I can't remember the colours or precise details, but essentially, one lamp lit when your patient had arrived, another when nobody was waiting, and the third when there was more than one patient to be seen.
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Old 15th Mar 2020, 11:12 am   #26
Dave Moll
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

Quote:
Originally Posted by russell_w_b View Post
When I was a kid the doc had an annunciator panel in the waiting room with wagging flags and bell, which 'sowed the seeds' as it were... I couldn't wait to have to go to the doctor so I could gaze at it!
I had the same experience as a child, though the attraction of the annunciator didn't quite make up for the experience of visiting the doctor.

Nowadays, in these days of advanced technology, these systems have been replaced by the doctor (or more likely a nurse or "nurse practitioner") coming out and calling the name of their next patient.
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Old 15th Mar 2020, 11:24 am   #27
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

[QUOTE=Dave Moll;1225670]
Quote:
Originally Posted by russell_w_b View Post

....

Nowadays, in these days of advanced technology, these systems have been replaced by the doctor (or more likely a nurse or "nurse practitioner") coming out and calling the name of their next patient.
A zero maintenance system!

(Less impersonal, too.)
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Old 15th Mar 2020, 11:49 am   #28
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

They were fitted in the 2004-built school I worked in, though never used.

Presumably on the grounds of economy, a brief sounding of the ear-splitting fire alarm klaxons initially indicated lesson, break, lunch and registration times. Traditional bells were retrofitted during the first half-term holiday.

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Old 15th Mar 2020, 11:56 am   #29
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

[QUOTE=Herald1360;1225672]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Moll View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by russell_w_b View Post

....

Nowadays, in these days of advanced technology, these systems have been replaced by the doctor (or more likely a nurse or "nurse practitioner") coming out and calling the name of their next patient.
A zero maintenance system!

(Less impersonal, too.)
At my surgery, doctors call their patients in via a tannoy system but lesser health professionals come out and shout.
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Old 15th Mar 2020, 3:30 pm   #30
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

My GP has a long red LED scrolling display that shows the names of the next patient and the doctor they are to see. It buzzes when a new name appears. However, because the waiting room seats are in four parallel rows and the display is on the wall at right angles to them, you need to turn your head almost 90 to read it.

At my college (Cardiff) the engineering block had a sort of paging system built into the electric clocks that every room had. The clocks had transparent red plastic numbers that could be individually illuminated by bulbs behind them. Occasionally different combinations of three numbers were illuminated in approx 1 second flashes with no accompanying sound. We students were not told the significance of the codes. Presumably each member of staff had their own number. I don't know if this was a commercial product or something designed by the engineering department. The building was then new, AFAIK opened circa1964.
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Old 15th Mar 2020, 11:50 pm   #31
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

My some of the offices at my secondary school had indicators like this, though some were simply bulbs with the captions in Dymo tape.

I don't remember them actually being used.

The BHS in Stockport used have some indicator lights mounted on walls.

These had semi cylindrical transparent coloured filters in red, amber & green.

Occasionally I would see one of the segments lit up, which I assume was to indicate something for the staff.
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Old 16th Mar 2020, 1:39 pm   #32
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

Quote:
Originally Posted by donutty View Post
I took a photo of these in a Sheffield antiques shop in June 2019. I am going into town tomorrow. If they are still there (!) do you want them?
Slightly late to the party as I'm not on here daily these days, but if that's about and it's not a huge hassle I'd love to get hold of that. Given the turnover of stock in places like that though I doubt it would still be there.

Been quite a while since I found anything interesting like that in one of those shops, though we don't have many around here I'm aware of.
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Old 16th Mar 2020, 2:52 pm   #33
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

Regrettably we drove straight past it on Saturday because nobody wanted me to see if they were still there. If they are if I am passing maybe in a couple of weeks time, would you still be interested?

There were at: https://goo.gl/maps/8xi115tzvmTUvGSVA
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Old 17th Mar 2020, 12:45 am   #34
Zelandeth
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

Aye I'd definitely still be interested. Drop me a PM on here if I'm slow to respond as that will throw an email to remind me to check.

No rush, just I love that sort of industrial design, and I love vintage lighting...so this ticks a lot of boxes for me.

I've just been advised to quarantine myself for the next 12 weeks so I suspect a significant number of random projects are about to get dusted off if I've any hope of retaining my sanity.
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Old 17th Mar 2020, 10:05 am   #35
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

My brother many years ago worked at a place that had these, the boss’ son had one outside his office, they nicknamed him Robin traffic light.
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Old 27th Mar 2020, 5:44 am   #36
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

Hi!

My secondary school, Heysham High, had these outside the Headmaster's Office as well!

The Wall Box had three standard red, amber and green m.e.s. lamp units labelled "BUSY", "WAIT" & "COME IN" with a press–button below for a call buzzer, this system was connected to a solenoid–operated lock on the door itself – if the Head was busy, nothing happened except the red "BUSY" light illuminated, if the Head wanted you to wait a short while (the delay was variable) the amber "WAIT" lit with a very short buzz, then when the preset delay timed out there was a long buzz and the green "COME IN" light came on with a click as the door lock released.

The Headmaster's Console had four piano keys, one coloured red, one coloured yellow and two plain grey ones (I never found out what the grey ones were for) and a long thin green button in the form of a horizontal line underneath the piano keys to operate the "COME IN" light and release the lock.

There was also a small grey rotary pot. control below the green "come in" bar to set the "Wait" delay to however long was desired.

The Wall Box was lettered in black engraved "BS 3693" lettering, (a sample of which is now available in my post "Vintage Lettering now Available" et. al.) – I've a feeling this system was manufactured by Gent, but if anyone recognises it and has a picture, please do post one!

And yes I did have to use it once, after a school sponsored 20 mile walk for charity – I was called to the Head's office a couple of days later, pressed the buzzer, got a short buzz and "Wait" followed by "Come In" after what seemed like forever!

Fortunately the Head didn't want me for punishment, it was to say "well done" at my attempt at the walk – I had done 12 of the 20 miles – and to present me with an old transistor radio to tinker with!

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Old 1st Apr 2020, 8:57 pm   #37
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

Saved this from the skip last year. It had been fitted on a Headmasters office but out of service for a long time. Removed during renovations.

It's made in Finland by a company called ESMI.

There's a buzzer on both ends operated by the green button (one to call, one to signal that the person may enter).

Wait & Engaged lights operated by rocker switches on the Headmasters panel (right hand side). The rocker switches themselves light up when engaged as well as the correpsonding light on the call panel (left hand side). Note the 'Engaged' rocker bulb is blown - th eonly one that didn't work!

The call panel also has a permenantly illuminated blank slot at the top - I assume for putting a name on.

Interesting is the plug & socket arrangement. I've wired it up in the same manner it came out. Not sure what benefit it gives other than as a junction box. The socket mounts in a similar way to European Schuko sockets but has 6 thin bladed pins within.

All lamps are 24v MBC. The 24v wiring was originally clipped to a skirting board and power supplied through thin flex from a poorly wired 'Volex Temco' plug with it's 13a fuse. I have visions of the Headmaster or Caretaker smoking his pipe and installing it proudly - I assume sometime in the 70's!
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Old 1st Apr 2020, 10:45 pm   #38
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

I remember those ESMI systems; I think I had their catalogue at one point. As well as doors they had a range of manager/secretary call buzzers.

The door panel would have been hard wired and the plug/socket used for the manager's desk control unit.

About 20 years ago I think I noticed that style of call panel on the bench in the local court - presumably the judge could silently signal for the attendance of an usher or police officer.
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Old 2nd Apr 2020, 11:32 pm   #39
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

Quote:
saved this from the skip last year
Those were like the aforementioned ones we had at college, I was in Science and Maths (the so-called S&M department) and the department head could buzz us into the office with a door release.
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Old 3rd Apr 2020, 12:25 pm   #40
Malcolm G6ANZ
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Default Re: Busy, wait, enter lamps for the outside of a manager's office or headmaster's stu

Something a bit different on the wall outside my under-stairs toilet/shower room.
I rescued the sign from work when a machine was scrapped and the room refurbished.
I comes on when the light is switched on warning other household members that it's in use. There is also a lock on the door !
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