Author Topic: Princess Phone dated 7-59  (Read 2368 times)

Offline JimH

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Princess Phone dated 7-59
« on: October 10, 2009, 11:10:25 AM »
I just won this Princess phone from July, 1959.  All the parts match (capsules from June, 1959).  I think the handset, except for the caps,  is soft plastic, marked "59", which would account for the different fading.  The body is the later hard plastic.  The handset appears much lighter than the body.  I don't know if I'll be able to get rid of the fade or not.  Does anyone know what month exactly the Princess phone was first introduced?  I noticed on the bottom it doesn't even say "Princess", just the model number and date.  Interestingly, the body shell does not have a date imprinted on the inside, and the plungers have a "glued on" stopper instead of the later screwed on metal stopper.  I was thinking of maybe finding a "hard plastic" handset marked 59 if I can't get rid of the fade.  The cords are marked '59 also.  I think I got a good deal for $44.  What do you guys think?
Jim H.

Offline JorgeAmely

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Re: Princess Phone dated 7-59
« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2009, 11:51:03 AM »
Jim:

I think I have a couple of pink handsets in my garage. If interested, I can go dig them out.
Jorge

Offline JimH

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Re: Princess Phone dated 7-59
« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2009, 11:56:51 AM »
Thanks, Jorge.  I've got a pink 500 with a handset marked '60 I could use until I find one marked 1959.  Wouldn't happen to have a '59 would you? 
Jim H.

Offline bingster

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Re: Princess Phone dated 7-59
« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2009, 01:27:54 PM »
I think you got a good deal on that one, Jim.  7-59 is definitely the earliest I've seen. Before this one, the earliest I had seen was 12/59.  I'm not sure when in 1959 they were first released, but that's got to be close to the very beginning.
= DARRIN =



Offline Dan

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Re: Princess Phone dated 7-59
« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2009, 04:06:53 PM »
I know really early ones used a 495A network. Let us know what you have. You can get the cord to pink up if you copy the thread about "cord regeneration".

It is the earliest  I have seen.
"Imagine how weird telephones would look if our ears weren't so close to our mouths." - Steven Wright

Offline McHeath

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Re: Princess Phone dated 7-59
« Reply #5 on: October 10, 2009, 08:21:00 PM »
Unusual early Princess, very interesting phone.  It's lack of the Princess name is odd, does the handset have that soft plastic smell?  I'm betting the full color could be restored.

I also note that the bottom plastic base is crosshatched. 

Offline Dan/Panther

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Re: Princess Phone dated 7-59
« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2009, 03:43:13 AM »
I agree, don't be to anxious to get rid of the parts it should come back nicely.
D/P

The More People I meet, The More I Love, and MISS My Dog.  Dan Robinson

Offline JimH

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Re: Princess Phone dated 7-59
« Reply #7 on: October 11, 2009, 09:45:21 AM »
You're right.  I think I'm going to try and bring the handset back.  The network is a 495A and the handset does have that cheesy smell.  If I remember my history right, they started making the hard plastic parts in late '59 for the 500.  This could be some "left over" handsets in soft plastic when they were using up what parts they had.  The dial is marked 8A 7-59.  Also, the dial has a lot more resistance when dialing, and there is no counterweight installed....the phone spins all over the place when you try to dial.  I don't know if you all know about the weight that had to be added later, in the field,  to exsisting phones, and later ones built in the factory.  The phone was too light and required "two hands" to dial....one to dial, and the other to hold the phone still.  WECO had ignored their own tests that it was too light and went ahead with production anyway.   So a telephone man had to go around and install this weight to the left side of the phone.  In 1963 they added a ringer which gave it the weight needed so it didn't move around as much.  I think they also adjusted  the dial to make it easier to turn.
Jim H.

Offline Dan/Panther

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Re: Princess Phone dated 7-59
« Reply #8 on: October 11, 2009, 01:12:31 PM »
When the Princess dial is properly cleaned and lubricated, in the case of mine anyhow, they are the smoothest, and quietest dials I have.
D/P

The More People I meet, The More I Love, and MISS My Dog.  Dan Robinson

Offline jsowers

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Re: Princess Phone dated 7-59
« Reply #9 on: October 12, 2009, 02:37:42 PM »
Judging from the unfaded area where the handset sat, you need to get more than just the handset back to the original color before everything will match. What you have are two different kinds of plastic that faded differently. Pink soft plastic tends to get whiter and pink hard plastic gets darker.

You are correct that 7-59 was when they were using up soft plastic pieces. I usually don't see it with Princesses, though. I see it on 500s and 554s mostly. I call them "combo" phones and pink is one of the colors that really can fade. The plastics matched in 1959, and only over time did they fade differently.

I also have a 701 housing with no date stamp. It's from a 1960 Princess display model and the buttons are glued down because there's no switchhook inside. A picture is posted below. Does yours have the two incised circles on each side at the buttons? My phone also has a brown place where a light must have been placed when it was on display. It does go through a little to the outside.

I've has moderate success with bleaching with 1 part bleach to 2 parts water, for several hours in the hot sun, to remove fade from hard plastic. It doesn't always work. Don't go overboard with the bleaching and don't leave it in a long time. Good luck with your early 701 Princess. It's the earliest I've seen too. I think your idea of getting a hard plastic 59 or 60 handset may be the best option if you want it to look nice without a whole lot of effort.
Jonathan