Author Topic: WE Switchboard  (Read 463 times)

Offline Brinybay

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WE Switchboard
« on: March 04, 2017, 03:10:42 PM »
Just curious about this, I have nowhere to put it unless I could use it as a desk, but then I would have to find a way to load and transport it, and I'm assuming these are heavy and you would need at least a 2-man team just to load it.  I'm not sure my Ranger pickup would handle it if they're extremely heavy.  Anyway, seller's asking price is $350, open to offers.  What era to these hail from, general going price?

Quote
Telephone Switchboard - $350

Bell System, made by Western Electric, corded switchboard PBX. Not sure of year it was made. Seems to be fully intact, even has the headset. Measures 27-3/4" wide, 34-1/2" deep, and 51" tall.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2017, 03:37:29 PM by Brinybay »
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Offline poplar1

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Re: WE Switchboard
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2017, 03:51:21 PM »
Notice that most of the jacks do not have lamps associated with them. This is probably a #552 attendant console from the 1940s, and not a 551 P.B.X.  The 552 was used as only a small part of an electromechanical P.B.X. (PABX) such as a 740 or 701,  and did not function as a standalone unit.

On a 551 or 555, a station going off-hook would cause the lamp associated with that extension to light up.
On a 552 or 556, the station would dial 0, and the call would come in on one of the attendant trunk jacks.

With all of these, it's important to have pictures of the back with the cover off. That's because most of them have been gutted. That is, the "gate" with all the relays has been removed. On the other hand, that makes them easy to move.
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Offline Fabius

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Re: WE Switchboard
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2017, 08:02:00 PM »
The bottom front panel is wrong or has some type of covering on it?
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Offline Brinybay

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Re: WE Switchboard
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2017, 08:12:32 PM »
I mostly curious as to what a fair price for these would be.  At best, I would only be interested in it as a decor piece.  How big is that horizontal "desk" part of it?  My own desk is only 22 X 38.5, so if it's about that size, I could (in theory) use it as a desk, plus it would be cool to have the dial actually rigged to call out.  I wouldn't mind the innards being gone, but I would want all the visible parts, including the lamps.

Update:  As I was typing another post, they dropped the price significantly to $150.  Still not sure I'm interested because the only way I could justify getting this or one like it is to be able to use it as a desk.  The "desk" area on this doesn't look like it would be very practical for that.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2017, 08:41:21 PM by Brinybay »
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Offline AE_Collector

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Re: WE Switchboard
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2017, 09:21:04 PM »
The cord weights are all missing, in the picture at least. Cord boards in general usually have an asking price in the $100-$500 price range but ability to pick it up without shipping is a big consideration. If you want to actually hook phones to it to play with you need a 551 or 555 cord board which this isn't.

The change in design from older 551-552 to newer 556-556-557 type boards included moving the switches and cords to the very back of the desk so that someone could use the table surface as a desk between calls where as these older ones have little room left to use as a desk.

Terry
« Last Edit: March 04, 2017, 09:23:12 PM by AE_Collector »

Offline Brinybay

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Re: WE Switchboard
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2017, 02:30:24 PM »
At best, I would only be interested in it as a decor piece.

Update:  Anita said she doesn't like decor-only "furniture", it has to have some sort of practical function in addition to the decor aspect.  That changes the picture, but it's certainly one I could live with in regards to switchboards.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVQ-HLG0IPI#t=91.178874
The idea that a four-year degree is the only path to worthwhile knowledge is insane.
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