Author Topic: New member from Manitoba, Canada  (Read 1993 times)

Offline CanadianGuy

  • ***
  • Posts: 110
New member from Manitoba, Canada
« on: January 01, 2015, 10:39:34 PM »
Hi everyone, I'm a contractor for MTS, our incumbent phone company. I've seen a fair amount of stuff in my travels at work, from vintage payphones, wooden phones, many of the colored rotary's (sorry, not familiar with their models yet), some lamp phones, and even what looked like some old mechanical selectors from a central office stuffed in a box.

I'm not too interested in collecting, but would love to eventually have maybe one of each type. I have even seen some vintage phones or equipment inside the central offices that I sometimes go into. As a contractor, it doesn't happen often. I'm amazed they even have some old cordboard test equipment on the wall in one CO. I don't know if they're ever planning to remove them, but I would LOVE to get one! I have pics of some of the stuff I've seen, and will try and post them soon.

I have a real interest in the old phone system, before it all went digital (boring!) I've read Exploding The Phone by Phil Lapsley, which is about phone phreaks. I just bought the audiobook through iTunes. It's narrated by one of the phone phreaks who used to record his experiments on the phone system. I'm sure many people would laugh at this, but I presume as telephone collectors that you understand :)

I wish I had more disposable income so that I could offer to buy some of the stuff I come across, although that might seem rude seeing as how I'm there to install or repair their phone, TV or internet. One young guy had just bought this house that had a red rotary wall phone that was IMMACULATE, but I'm sure he didn't think much about it. He didn't even have home phone service!

Anyway, I don't want to ramble on.

Thanks!

Offline rbouch

  • ***
  • Posts: 145
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2015, 10:49:35 PM »
well,
welcome,
I just joined recently too and have stores I am in charge of in Brandon and Winkler.  I used to run the iT departmentvfor my company and so dealt with MTS a few times.

I think you'll find the people on this forum really helpful.

Offline AE_Collector

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7504
  • AE 2 - AECo's 1st Self Contained Desk Phone 1925
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2015, 11:12:14 PM »
Look out CRPF, us Canadians are taking over and going to rename it the Canadian Rotary Phone Forum!

Welcome CanadianGuy and rbouch! I worked for BCTelephone and Telus for 37 1/2 years and retired last year at 56. I was interested in phones before I started working for the company a few months after graduating from High School in 1975. One of my favourite things over my 37 1/2 years was scrounging around in CO's and multi office buildings looking for whatever I could find from the past.

I would bet that if you could locate the CO supervisor for any of the CO's that seem to have abandoned equipment in them he might give you the go ahead to "save" some of the old stuff given your interest in it. That is of course assuming it isn't in use in any way or part of a collection or display in the CO which I have encountered before. I "recovered" lots of items over the years but being a Telco employee rather than a contractor I was a bit more likely to make the "executive decisions" on behalf of the company as and when required. I know that many CO's are unmanned let along having a CO sup hanging around but in BC we always have the Sup responsible for the CO listed inside the door so you could even call and have a chat.

Anyway, I think you are in trouble already given what you said here:

I'm not too interested in collecting, but would love to eventually have maybe one of each type.

Welcome to our forum!

Terry
« Last Edit: January 01, 2015, 11:14:06 PM by AE_Collector »

Offline CanadianGuy

  • ***
  • Posts: 110
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2015, 09:43:33 AM »
Thanks guys! Yeah, I've gotten to know a bunch of employees of the company over the 7 or so years of doing this. It's great seeing the rows of phones many of you have, but for me it's the back end of the old network that really turns my crank :) I would love to even try setting up a small working system. I'm sure my kids would love it! I'm a daydreamer who rarely follows through with anything, though :-\ Life's busy with work and family.

I'm going to throw it out there next time I see someone at the company. My guess is they'll probably laugh and say no way. Something like this test board would probably be worth a lot of money, either to them or a collector?

Offline AE_Collector

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7504
  • AE 2 - AECo's 1st Self Contained Desk Phone 1925
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2015, 09:56:07 AM »
By the handset it appears to be British which makes sense as many of the provincially owned Telco's used a lot of British equipment. Especially during the conversions to dial after WW2.

A lot of things such as that test board arent really worth a lit as there is such a limited number of people who are interested in things like that. And Cord Board PBX's never go for much as they areto heavy to ship and take up lots of room.

I am very interested in the old CO switching equipment and have some around here though nothing on display at this time. Chevk the switching area here on CRPF for more discussion on this.

Terry

Offline CanadianGuy

  • ***
  • Posts: 110
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2015, 10:30:19 AM »
Cool, so this board must be quite old then huh? I'm 35 so to me it looks ancient haha. My thought is that if it's still on this company's books, they'll want to maximize profits if it's sold. But I could be wrong and they might even just chuck this old stuff if and when they remove it. I saw their little mini museum in another CO that I think is run by the telephone pioneers here. I want to try and see it again, maybe take some pictures, and maybe make some new connections to collectors or historians. I bet there's not too many young people interested in this stuff.

Thanks for the input. I don't know if I'm supposed to have long chats in my introduction post :)

Offline dsk

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3546
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2015, 12:37:47 PM »
Hi, and welcome.
Nice test board. The origin of the handset may be English, but this style was the first used on "the Norwegian Model" or DBH 1001 http://tinyurl.com/oxcgqz6 designed around 1930. This was made in many counties.

dsk

Offline AE_Collector

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7504
  • AE 2 - AECo's 1st Self Contained Desk Phone 1925
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #7 on: January 02, 2015, 01:15:49 PM »

I bet there's not too many young people interested in this stuff.

I don't know if I'm supposed to have long chats in my introduction post :)

Several teenagers are regulars on here which is encouraging for the hobby!

Not many rules here about what you can and should do.
First and foremost, treat everyone with respect, no arguing, no question is a bad question etc.

Terry
« Last Edit: January 02, 2015, 11:32:00 PM by AE_Collector »

Offline CanadianGuy

  • ***
  • Posts: 110
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #8 on: January 02, 2015, 01:48:53 PM »
Sounds like my kind of place! Some other forums are very firm with their rules, like if you stray off topic a little, they'll definitely let you know  :-\

I've already left a message with the MTS Volunteers (formerly called Pioneers) and hopefully be able to check out their little setup. I'm sure my kids might find it a little interesting, but it's no Minecraft :P

Offline paul-f

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 3024
    • Old Telephones as Entertainment!
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #9 on: January 02, 2015, 06:45:33 PM »
Welcome.

It can't hurt to ask about unused equipment.  I know several Canadian collectors who got the call to clean out "junk" in the basement of a phone company building to find it contained thousands of sets that were removed from service over past decades.  We have also heard that several phone company museums were cleared out during company downsizing and the contents sent straight to the dumpster before collectors heard about the potential opportunity to save the stuff.

Good luck.
Paul
Visit: paul-f.com         WE 500  Design_Line

.

Offline CanadianGuy

  • ***
  • Posts: 110
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #10 on: January 02, 2015, 07:02:15 PM »
Well, I'll be interested to see what they say. It's been a private company since '96 or '97. Not sure if that would make it better or worse for acquiring the vintage equipment laying around. I had a picture of a raw aluminum rotary phone that must've been for outdoor use. It looked brand new sitting on the shelf in the training room! Neat little piece. I get all excited imagining them telling me to just take it all haha.

Offline Stubbypylon

  • ***
  • Posts: 171
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #11 on: January 03, 2015, 10:08:34 AM »
Welcome CanadianGuy!  We work for the same company - sort of - as I'm with Allstream in Ontario, owed by MTS.
Craig Stanowski

Offline CanadianGuy

  • ***
  • Posts: 110
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #12 on: January 03, 2015, 10:49:43 AM »
Cool! :) I'm not employed by them, though. They sure keep us busy, though. What do you do at Allstream? I bet things were buzzing around there when the sale was looming.

Offline Stubbypylon

  • ***
  • Posts: 171
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #13 on: January 03, 2015, 11:44:58 AM »
My background was PBX install & repair but now I'm project managing national data and voice circuit installs for enterprise customers like the banks.
Craig Stanowski

Offline AE_Collector

  • Global Moderator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 7504
  • AE 2 - AECo's 1st Self Contained Desk Phone 1925
Re: New member from Manitoba, Canada
« Reply #14 on: January 03, 2015, 12:04:33 PM »
Hi Craig:

Glad you are managing to make a career if it with ownership changes and threats of sales etc. I had enough and when given the opportunity retired from BCTel->Telus last year, travelling the world now it seems!

Terry