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and very rarely ever needs repairs, once you fix them." - Dan/Panther

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New from N. Central Florida

Started by Alexander, December 14, 2014, 12:19:36 PM

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I blame being here on a payphone.  ;)

I bought a Western Electric single slot payphone a few years ago, and always planned to fix it up...but things kept getting in the way. I had it in various places around the house, sitting on tables and never mounted anywhere because it wasn't quite right yet.

A friend was over and saw it a few weeks ago and gave me a good idea for how to display it, and that re-lit the fire.

When I originally bought the phone, the faceplate and coin box cover had been painted this horrible shade of blue. It was grimy both inside and out. It had already been modified for use on a standard phone I wiped it down and hooked it up and that was pretty much the extent of it for a couple years.

In the last month I've stripped the coinbox cover only to discover that it was likely painted because it's covered in fine abrasions and not very nice looking at all. I skipped cleaning the faceplate and just bought a new one, along with a BellSouth coinbox cover ('96 Olympics). Those two improvements alone made a world of difference! I just attached a Bellsouth logo to the upper left corner and am waiting for some original Bellsouth information/instruction cards to arrive to finish up the cosmetics. I have some temporary printed ones in there for now.

I grew up in the south, and Bellsouth payphones were everywhere, so it brings back some good memories for me to have one.

I'm still working on getting it to actually be able to place calls though (see the Western Electric thread). Since I'm not an electrician, it could take awhile to figure out...but it's worth it!

Other than the payphone, I dont have any other real telephones....something I plan to fix.

My wishlist includes an Automatic Electric 50, a Western Electric Space Saver, and a Stromberg-Carlson 1243...if only I had the money!!

I'm partial to the wall mount phones. I have a lot of fond memories of sitting in the kitchen eating cookies or having lunch while my mom or grandmother talked on the kitchen phone to their friends. I have every intention of having one in my kitchen as well, even if it's seldom used!




Welcome to the forum.  Before long, you will likely find yourself with more phones than you know where to put.  The phones on your wish list are not all that difficult to find for reasonable prices with a bit of patience.  SC 1243s in particular, tend to sell for cheap.  A nice one can often be found for around $20.  Keep looking and enjoy!



Thanks for the welcome :) Been keeping my eye out for a short while with no luck on a steal yet (everything I like goes for $50+)....I'll give it a few more months, and then up my limits a bit from 'steal'. to 'good deal'and see what happens.



Welcome to the Forum!

Wall phones are not always given their due, so I'm glad to see someone else who likes them. They aren't the easiest things to display, but they are plenty easy to use.

I also grew up in the South and remember Southern Bell fondly. My uncle Don worked there for 30 years. Both my grandmothers had wall phones--one a black 554 and one a black AE50--and both rang loud enough to hear outside. In the South, as you may remember, we spent lots of time outside in the summer, so that was important. In those days before cordless phones and central air, you'd go running into the house to answer the phone when you heard it ring.


Wall phones are definitely my favorite! I'd put them on just about every wall in the house if I could  ;)

My Mom had a black rotary in the kitchen for awhile, then upgraded to the newer touchtone version in that bright yellow (goldenrod?) was loud-ish as I remember.

My Mom's parents had one of those side-hanging rotary phones (Model 90 I think) in the kitchen. They owned a small mobile home park from the late 70's until the early 90's, and Grandpa had the exact same phone in his shop/garage with an extremely loud external ringer setup on the outside wall. You could hear that thing ringing just about across the entire park!

I remember when they bought a new mobile home for themselves and set it up in a slightly different spot Grandma had to make him move the external ringer because it ended up right outside the kitchen window (like 20 feet). It'd scare her so bad when it'd ring she'd end up dropping whatever she was carrying. She answered the phone sounding angry for at least a month until he moved it though ;D

They also had a payphone booth for residents that us kids weren't allowed to fool around of course we did. That's where I fell in love with the things....wanted one of my own ever since I was a little kid. Wish I remembered what model it was.  :-\


Greg G.

Quote from: Alexander on December 14, 2014, 12:19:36 PM
I blame being here on a payphone.  ;)

I bought a Western Electric single slot payphone a few years ago, and always planned to fix it up...but things kept getting in the way.

Welcome!  With me, it's always another phone that gets in the way!  Here's how it works:  You get a phone, start tinkering with it, then in the middle of the project, you happen to find another phone, and you start tinkering with that one and push the other one aside, then find yet another phone and repeat the process, over and over.  At least that's how it works for me.

Keep looking for the bargains and outright steals, that's how I found many of mine, although there are a few that I payed going price, and one or two that I paid too much for (we all do it).  Even if I had lots of funds to pay going prices on phones, it's just not much fun, I like the thrill of the hunt.  My sources are Craigslist, yard sales, thrift stores. 
The idea that a four-year degree is the only path to worthwhile knowledge is insane.
- Mike Row


 Welcome to the asylum. You have found the best bunch of lunatics......err.....I meant "collectors" on the web! You have already been warned about the phones multiplying, it is known as Phoneitis. It is a progressive, incurable condition. You will be getting lots more phones. There is a phone show nearby coming up soon. In Mainland Florida, outside Orlando on January 17th. Good opportunity to pick up some phones and meet others with the same affliction. I will be there! Bright & early. Or at least early, I have a 3 hour drive! I will be getting up at 3AM!
Harry Smith
ATCA 4434

"There is no try,
there is only
do or do not"


LOL...thats about how long it'd be for me to drive down. Unfortunately I have to work that whole weekend...12hr shifts :(

I need (yes, need) at least 6 phones still....probably more. Thats the joy of old school phones; you need at least one for every room, sometimes two...or three!

You're not an addict if you don't go to the meetings!