I’ve got 2 broken touch lamps at home (you know, the ones that start off and go on in three stages just by touching them and then go off again) and I thought I’d do a bit of web surfing to see if I could find out how to fix them.
I found this page: www.repairfaq.org/REPAIR/F_appfaq6.html#APPFAQ_001 which was very helpful, but I also found this which was very funny:
“I’ve tracked down touch lamps over a block away. Found two in a house across the street from the house behind me. Found another in a house on the block corner opposite my location.
When they are close enough to you like next door, you can control them with your radio transmissions. Years ago, a new neighbor moved in directly in back of my house. I was sitting in front of the HF rig listening when they plugged in their touch lamp. 10-20db over S9 of noise pulse every 72 Khz across the band popped up immediately. I QSYed to CW and tuned to the bottom of a pulse. When I keyed the rig, the pulse shifted upward a few KC. Retuned to the bottom & keyed and it shifted it again. Same thing the third time. On the fourth key up, it shifted back down to about the original starting freq. I had total control on the 3-way lamp!
So I went about having some fun with it. I sent messages encoded by the number of shifts. Not sure if they ever copied the messages, but they sure unplugged the lamp every time I played with it very long. They either thought it was broken or that their new house was haunted!
Latter that summer I saw they had a garage sale. Stopped in and found they had a touch lamp for sale. I probably should’ve bought it to ensure no one nearby did, but apparently no one did since it hasn’t shown up on the bands for years now.””
I don’t understand all the technical bits, but I certainly found it funny!!