Author Topic: Soft Plastic White/Ivory WE 593?  (Read 2425 times)

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Soft Plastic White/Ivory WE 593?
« on: August 17, 2015, 01:18:03 AM »
I found this WE593 on ebay, and while it doesn't seem completely obvious, I think it may be soft plastic. The fat hook is the first clue, and while the date on the housing (or any date on the phone as a matter of fact) isn't visible, the thickness of the housing seems about right to be an early one. I compared with with two of my 554s; one from '58, the other from '62. There were some slight differences in the outline of the housing from the back that were closer to the '58. But at the same time, the handset cord looks like a later one, probably a replacement.

Maybe I'm looking too deep into useless clues, but I hope I scored a nice early colored non-Bell 554! Worst case, I end up with a nice open-center fingerwheel to catch up on some of my project phones! :)

I paid $22.99 plus shipping for it.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/191664736589
« Last Edit: August 17, 2015, 09:54:07 PM by WEBellSystemChristian »
Christian Petterson

"Whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right" -Henry Ford

Offline jsowers

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Re: Soft Plastic White WE 593?
« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2015, 11:47:53 AM »
Christian, it looks like soft plastic to me, but I think it's ivory instead of white. It may pre-date white. We don't see too many 593s, which were made for independent telcos and had no "Bell System" on the front. This could also have a frequency ringer in it since it looks like it could have been a party line phone with the "1" on the number card.
 
You certainly got a great deal on the phone. Find of the month candidate for sure. Congratulations! Let us know what it turns out to be.
Jonathan

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: Soft Plastic White WE 593?
« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2015, 01:28:17 PM »
Christian, it looks like soft plastic to me, but I think it's ivory instead of white. It may pre-date white. We don't see too many 593s, which were made for independent telcos and had no "Bell System" on the front. This could also have a frequency ringer in it since it looks like it could have been a party line phone with the "1" on the number card.
 
You certainly got a great deal on the phone. Find of the month candidate for sure. Congratulations! Let us know what it turns out to be.
Thanks!

I'm just worried that since the handset cord looks like a replacement, that the handset could turn out to be as well. Then again, this phone was designed for an independent, so a small company probably didn't have the resouces to replace the handset with a newer one; a smaller refurbisher may have been a bit pickier than Bell System would have been about keeping factory components unless anything absolutely needed replacement.

I actually hope it turns out to be Ivory; it would be a color that I don't have in SP yet for 554 types. I hope it arrives safely and mostly original!
Christian Petterson

"Whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right" -Henry Ford

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: Soft Plastic White/Ivory WE 593?
« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2015, 06:31:03 PM »
The phone arrived today, and as it turns out, it's Light Beige!

When I took it out of the box, I could have sworn it was Ivory. The dial was coded -60, and then I realized the inside of the housing was light beige; the outside surface had actually bleached itself Ivory! About an hour's worth of wetsanding brought the color back, but the area around the dymo labels was really whitened, and still is. I actually tried going down to 800 grit on that, but it didn't work very well. I just polished what was there and left it. The plastics still look Ivory in the pictures, but believe me, they look much better in person! All plastics are from late 1958 (except for the handle; 8-57 re-stamped 1-59) and all original internals from 1-59.

The dial card is original, it was under the stick-on card that was stuck to the card window. Looks great with Beige!

The original handset elements, handset cord, and ringer I believe are ITT parts from the '70s. I replaced the transmitter and receiver elements with genuine WE parts, but should I remove the ringer? It's definitely straight-line, but not WE. I'm considering removing it, as it would have been out of the factory.

Anybody have a Light Beige handset cord dated '59 they would be willing to part with? I'd even settle for an early '60s cord!
« Last Edit: August 19, 2015, 06:56:45 PM by WEBellSystemChristian »
Christian Petterson

"Whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right" -Henry Ford

Offline jsowers

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Re: Soft Plastic White/Ivory WE 593?
« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2015, 09:35:32 PM »
Gee, we both got the color wrong from the pictures! Sometimes it's hard to tell from the pictures on a faded phone. As you've shown us in the pictures, Tenite sometimes faded lighter instead of darker like ABS did. Especially the light colors like pink and light beige. The cords faded light even worse than the plastics.
 
I'm glad to know what it turned out to be. Your pictures are very good too. You have it nice and shiny and looking much better. I hope you find a cord for it. The original number card was a big plus. Funny how it's partly hand-written.
 
Originally the 593 and its counterpart the desk model 591 came with no ringer at all. So anything could be in there since it was supplied by the telco. You have a nice shot of the logo, which differs from the usual logo because no "Bell System" is present. What about the handset logo? I don't recall seeing one with third party handset parts, so they must've been replaced sometime.
 
With eBay there's no telling, but I bet it's a while before you see another 593.
Jonathan

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: Soft Plastic White/Ivory WE 593?
« Reply #5 on: August 19, 2015, 10:46:13 PM »
Gee, we both got the color wrong from the pictures! Sometimes it's hard to tell from the pictures on a faded phone. As you've shown us in the pictures, Tenite sometimes faded lighter instead of darker like ABS did. Especially the light colors like pink and light beige. The cords faded light even worse than the plastics.
 
I'm glad to know what it turned out to be. Your pictures are very good too. You have it nice and shiny and looking much better. I hope you find a cord for it. The original number card was a big plus. Funny how it's partly hand-written.
 
Originally the 593 and its counterpart the desk model 591 came with no ringer at all. So anything could be in there since it was supplied by the telco. You have a nice shot of the logo, which differs from the usual logo because no "Bell System" is present. What about the handset logo? I don't recall seeing one with third party handset parts, so they must've been replaced sometime.
 
With eBay there's no telling, but I bet it's a while before you see another 593.

Thanks! :)

I think the number card is really cool hand-written! It adds a bit of personality to the phone, not that I wouldn't prefer the typed-out counterpart... ::)

The handset logo format is exactly the same as any other G3; that would have been a pain for WE if both the handset and housing were Bell-marked for Bell telephones!

I think it's cool that you say the 593 is a difficult-to-find model, and then I find one in Tenite in Light Beige! I'm proud to own this one!

P.S, do you know if there was a certain way WE shipped these models? Without the ringer, the adjustment lever is loose enough to clank around when the phone is moved at all. I wonder if WE gave instructions on how to install a ringer properly; whoever installed this one didn't align the lever tab in the hole, so the lever jammed itself under a tab in the plastic housing when I tried reinstalling the housing at first. I'm surprised nothing broke!
« Last Edit: August 20, 2015, 10:13:09 PM by WEBellSystemChristian »
Christian Petterson

"Whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right" -Henry Ford

Offline AE40FAN

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Re: Soft Plastic White/Ivory WE 593?
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2015, 10:22:42 AM »
Soft Light Beige is surprisingly a really hard color to find.  Nice find!  I have a 1958 500 and the cords are faded.  Still on the hunt for replacement cords as well....

Offline jsowers

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Re: Soft Plastic White/Ivory WE 593?
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2015, 05:54:13 PM »
Well, if there's anything rarer than a 593, it would have to be a 593 NOS in the box. I have never seen one NOS, so I can't speak to how they were packed initially. I do remember seeing something about they had to start making all their ringers with the hole in the thumbwheel for the 554. The early ringers don't have that hole. I've seen ringers installed in 554s wrong too, with the adjustment bent and not in its hole.
 
I'm glad you preserved it the way it was, original card and fading and all. That's part of its personality. If I ever run across a light beige cord, I'll let you know.
Jonathan