Author Topic: I'm new, but would like to learn how to refurbish  (Read 1603 times)

Offline ntophones

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I'm new, but would like to learn how to refurbish
« on: July 26, 2009, 02:14:42 PM »
Hello,
I've been reading about how to clean, etc., but, I have a few questions.
I'll try to put some pics in to show you.
I have a WE 500? (I think).
There was something that pitted the handset. What would you use on it?
Then, there are some deeper scratches. What do you suggest?
If I can get the pics up, could you help me, and tell me, do I have a WE 500 phone?
It does work, but, the sound is not that great. I'd like to make it sound better when talking and listening.
Thanks,
new to this
--nto

Offline benhutcherson

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Re: I'm new, but would like to learn how to refurbish
« Reply #1 on: July 26, 2009, 02:34:40 PM »
Hello and welcome!

You do definitely have a Western Electric 500.

Your handset is a model G-1, which is made of Bakelite. Sometimes, Bakelite handsets are difficult to get clean and shiny again. We do have a thread going on in the "Collector Corner" forum right now though with some good information on this topic

http://www.classicrotaryphones.com/forum/index.php?topic=1259.0

Sometimes, scratches can be buffed out using an abrasive polish, like Novus or Brasso. Failing this, though, you'll need to carefully sand out the scratches. Here's another recent thread about removing a particularly deep scratch from a similar phone, complete with detailed instructions

http://www.classicrotaryphones.com/forum/index.php?topic=1154.0

500 sets usually have superb sound quality. Generally, when it's not up to par, the problem can be traced to a loose connection, a dirty contact in either the dial or the hookswitch, or a break in one of the wires in the handset cord. Bad receivers aren't unheard of either, although this is pretty unusual.

The first thing I personally would do is open up the telephone and make sure all of the connections are good and tight. Also, unscrew the receiver cap, and make sure the wires going into the receiver element are tight.

Next, remove the dial, and run a business card soaked in CRC QD electronics cleaner between each of the contacts on the back. It doesn't hurt to polish these with some fine-grit sandpaper, too.

Do the same with the hookswitch contacts.

Beyond this, clean every wire joint using a wire brush.

If all else fails, it's probably the handset cord, in which case you'll need to locate a replacement. You can check this by hooking an ohmmeter up to the cord leads and wiggling the cord to see if the resistance changes. An analog meter works best for this, as they respond more quickly than digital meters.

Failing this, the next thing to do is probably to change the receiver element. It's a type U1 receiver, available from Oldphoneworks for a couple of dollars.

Good luck! That should be a nice telephone when you're finished with it.

Offline ntophones

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Re: I'm new, but would like to learn how to refurbish
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2009, 02:46:03 PM »
Oh, thank you so much.
I have one more question. How do I get the dial off?
Thanks
--nto

Offline benhutcherson

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Re: I'm new, but would like to learn how to refurbish
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2009, 03:03:59 PM »
Once the shell is off, look at either side of the dial. You should see metal brackets, each of which has a screw at the top. You need to loosen the screws on either side-they don't need to come completely out. Then, gently pry the two brackets apart, and you should be able to lift the dial straight up.

Most dials come out this way, although the older ones had a third screw located at the front. I think this was gone by '62, but it's worth mentioning anyway. On this type of dial mounting, you need to also loosen this front screw. Then, lift up the front of the dial. Once the front is clear of the bracket, pull forward and the dial will come out.

In either case, the dial will still be tethered by four wires-two white, green, and blue. Note where these are connected, and remove them.

Offline ntophones

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Re: I'm new, but would like to learn how to refurbish
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2009, 03:35:47 PM »
Thank you so much! :)
--nto

Offline ntophones

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Re: I'm new, but would like to learn how to refurbish
« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2009, 04:07:09 PM »
If I'm wanting to clean the face of the dial and the fingerwheel, what should I do to get these apart?
Thanks,
I know I have so many questions.
--nto

Offline benhutcherson

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Re: I'm new, but would like to learn how to refurbish
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2009, 04:18:22 PM »
The first thing you need to do is remove the number card retainer in the center of the fingerwheel. Do do this, push down on the top of the retainer with a sharp screwdriver, or even a fingernail. The top of the retainer can then be pulled forward, and the whole retainer pulled up.

Once the retainer is off, you'll see a hex headed nut that holds the fingerwheel on. Just remove the nut, and the spider washer under it, and you can pull the whole fingerwheel off.

You can then, if you so desire, remove the number plate to clean it. To do this, first remove the fingerstop. It is held on by a screw located on the side of the dial-just loosen this screw(no need to remove it) and the stop should pull right out.

The number plate is held on by two or three screws in the center of it. Remove these, and the plate should lift right off.