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Discussion Starter #1
It is obviously something very old and has to do with telephone, but what the.... It is in my basement attached to the subfloor between floor joists.
 

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Looks like a 100 year old lightning arrester that should have been gone long ago.
 

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JOATMON
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Early version of a flux capacitor.

Actually....the black thing in the old porclean lamp base looks like a sound module....those things feeding the whole mess look like fuses....but I'm not real sure what they are.

Can you unscrew the black object?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I can try to unscrew it later when I get home. I tore down the ceiling in the basement (half of it was falling down) and uncovered this. I think I may just leave it, so 100 years from now someone can find it when the ceiling I install starts to fall down.
 

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A "Handy Husband"
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An old telephone protector. Could still be in service if you have a land line. The 2 red things are fuses to protect against high current. They were modified in later years with the copper straps to elimenate that function. Under the black cap are porcelins and carbons that have an air gap that protects against high voltage.

The old time version of a "Network Interface".
 
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