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WE 1C Payphone Conversion for Home Use: Success!

Started by Ed Morris, April 21, 2020, 11:23:29 PM

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Ed Morris

Quote from: rcourtney on April 22, 2020, 09:55:54 PM
Lets do a quick test. In the upper housing, disconnect the green wire from the dial on terminal 10.  You should not get dialtone.  If you still get dial tone check all wires using my second post wiring diagram.  If no dialtone then the dial might be bad.

Thank you.  I am grateful to you for getting me this far along.  So I will try this test tomorrow morning.  I don't understand last sentence, though.  If I disconnect green wire from #10, I should get no dial tone, which is the desired result, correct?

If I still get s dialtone with green wire disconnected from terminal 10, then there is an issue, if I understand your instructions, and should check all wiring.  So then you say "If no dial tone, then dial might be bad."  That has me confused as it seems contradictory to what should happen when terminal 10 wire is disconnected.  What am I misunderstanding?


Sorry was getting tired.  This test tries to locate where the dial contacts are getting shorted.  If you disconnect one of the dial contact wires (either the green or the blue) and you still get dialtone, there is a wiring fault. 
Otherwise the dial is simply bad. The two common dial issues are:  dirt is preventing a contact separator from moving or contacts that need adjustment.

Ed Morris

I did a simple test this morning by trying to call a three digit DTF services number.  I tried 411, 511, and 611.  I know 511 works in our area for traffic information from VDOT.

In all cases, dial tone continues while dialing and nothing happens, so it does seem that the issue may be with the dial.  I will pull the front off and follow up with the test described in rcourtney's post.

Edit:  I removed green lead from #10 and still got a dial tone.  Same with blue disconnected.  So I'm going through the wiring diagram now looking for a wiring issue.

Ed Morris

Verizon replaced our copper line a couple years ago with a fiber optic landline.  It does support pulse dialing.  We do not have VOIP.

I just completed the check of the wiring from the switch hook to TB2 to the pins on P1 using the diagram you provided (thanks!).  I used a continuity tester to make sure all wiring was intact.

Three findings:
1.  There is no #14 on my TB2.  Wires are connected at the switch hook.

2.  #12 is not used on my phone.  Mine has the early wiring variant shown in Note 1, with the violet lead from pin 7 of P1 going straight to the switch hook.  Yellow from ON2 on the dial goes to #9 instead of #12, and pin 8 of P1 goes directly to the switch hook.

3.  Both yellow wires from ON2 were connected to #9.  According to the diagram, one should connect to #9 (instead of #12 per Note 1) and the other yellow lead to #13.

The only connection to #13 was the green lead from pin 5 of P1.  I removed one yellow lead from #9 and connected it to #13.  Still could not dial out to 511.  I switched the yellow leads between #9 and #13, and that made no difference.   Disappointing as I thought I had found the problem, but apparently not.

So, I am no further along at this point.  Incoming calls ring and I can answer the calls.

I did spray some contact cleaner into the dial mechanism, with no apparent effect if hardened lubricants is the problem.  I may need to remove the dial and do a more thorough cleaning.

Since the phone won't make three digit calls where a coin isn't needed, that seems to eliminate the totalizer as an issue.

Below is the diagram details with checks.  Click to enlarge.



Please take another pic of TB3.  Below the sockets. Your original pic the phone was wired for CF.

Ed Morris

Photo of TB3 below.  Should I leave the yellow from ON2 connected to #13 on TB2?



Confirmed your totalizer is wired on TB3 for coin first.  The wiring needs to be changed to match DTF.  My first post Table Q Coin Chassis section is easier to follow.

Leave your upper housing dial as shown in your first set of pics.  It matches mine.


It's NOT a good idea spraying contact cleaner into a dial. That stuff is very nasty and can actually damage more than help. It's always best to remove the dial assembly and then the dial. To clean the contacts with a business card drawn between the contacts. This will clean them sufficiently.

Ed Morris

Anyone need a traffic report for Virginia?  I just dialed 511 and it works!

rcourtney--thank you so much!  Your instructions, diagram, and chart were superb.

I rewired TB2 using your Table Q chart, and that did the trick.  The phone is working great now.

After I got it put back together, I was able to get a dial tone, drop in a quarter, and call my wife's cell phone, and have a conversation.  Audio is good, and dial works fine.

They just don't make stuff like this anymore.


Congratulations. It is always good to see one more old phone back in service. Also reinforces how great this forum is, knowledgeable people willing to help and keep at it until it is fixed! Thanks to all who made this possible.
Harry Smith
ATCA 4434

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


Glad you found the wiring  changes and got it working.

Ed Morris

Right, Harry!

I could not have done it without the members of ClassicRotaryPhonesForum.  Googling just didn't come up with usable information.  This was the first pay phone for me, and it was way more complicated the the typical desk set.

Thanks, Ken


I have to admit that finding payphone schematics are very hard to locate on the internet. I used to be able to find a site years ago that had all sorts of information, but that's gone now.
But payphones are fun to mess around with. I've had many in my day. And everytime it's fun to tear them down and give them a good cleaning, and then put them together again. Don't stop now, keep going..

Ed Morris

All back together: