Author Topic: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords  (Read 28719 times)

Offline Dennis Markham

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #45 on: October 20, 2012, 05:23:48 PM »
Dennis, "thisundthat5hnq" is the ebay name for Phoneco.

I hadn't noticed the seller's name on Bill's link to the eBay listing.  I have seen before that thisundthatthing sells their products cheaper on their web site than via eBay.  Perhaps they make up the difference in shipping costs.

Offline poplar1

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #46 on: October 20, 2012, 07:05:16 PM »
I haven't checked the shipping, but Ebay takes about 12% (seller's fees + paypal fees).
« Last Edit: October 20, 2012, 07:09:19 PM by poplar1 »
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Offline RotarDad

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #47 on: November 04, 2012, 01:35:49 AM »
I was hoping to get some input on 4-prong plug history.  My goal is to put the correct era plug on my phones (mostly WE500s 50's - early 60's).  I've noted 3 main types of plugs:

1) 283B with no "ears".  I have one on a '55 500.  I think this one may be bakelite.

2) 283B with "ears".  I've seen two varieties.  The older ones have small nuts which thread on each prong to secure them to the base.  The newer ones have the prongs molded into the plastic base.

3) 505A round plug.  I've seen two varieties here also: with and without the "Bell System Property - Not for Sale" notation.  I know the "not for sale" was '68 or so, and too new for my phones.

I have two questions:

1) What are the date ranges for these plugs, including thoughts on the nuts versus molded prongs on the "ear" 283B.

2) How are they supposed to be attached?  Most 500 line cords have a strain relief with two tabs that seem to fit nicely in a 505 plug, but I have older 500s that have the 283B plug and the line cord strain relief is a loose fit at best.  Some non-500 line cords have a screw-eye strain relief that attaches to a screw in the 283B, which is much better.  What was the WE plan here?

Thank you!

Paul
Paul

Offline poplar1

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #48 on: November 04, 2012, 08:13:45 AM »
4-prong jacks and plugs were introduced around 1931 when the anti-sidetone subsets were introduced which required 4 conductors from the 202 or 151AL. The earliest plugs had metal housings painted brown or ivory.

BSP section 461-630-100 Issue 8, July 1974 (page 18-19) shows how to attach the cord to the plug on 283B and 505A plugs. This is in the TCI library.

"3.02  The 283B (MD) plug (Fig. 32, 33, 34, 35) is
          a 2-piece, 4-contact plug of molded plastic
in colors to match telephone set colors as shown
in Table C. The mounting cord is secured by either
a wing band inserted into a slot in the cover or
an S hook or flat eyelet stay band secured with a
self-tapping screw packed with the plug."

The 283B was already rated Manufacture Discontinued in 1974. In Issue 5, June 1967, the 404B jack is MD, but not the 283B plug or 549A jack.

A friend had an extension phone installed in early 1965. He called to tell me it was a black 500 with a clear finger wheel and that a round jack had been installed. So I guess that was about the time frame for the introduction of 505A plug and 549A jack as well as the 9C dial.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2012, 08:33:36 AM by poplar1 »
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Offline poplar1

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #49 on: November 04, 2012, 04:33:57 PM »
202s and 302s were provided with special cords with eyelets instead of spade lugs on the plug end. The cords were furnished with the 283B plug already installed. The D4W cord was used on a 202 (instead of a D4U) and  a D3AM?? (instead of D3AL) on a 302.
« Last Edit: November 04, 2012, 04:37:15 PM by poplar1 »
"C'est pas une restauration, c'est une rénovation."--François Martin.

Offline jsowers

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #50 on: November 04, 2012, 07:43:09 PM »
The "wing band" is their term for the strain relief at the end of the standard 500 set mounting cord. It does have "wings" on it. The 283B plug has a hole in the prong side and a hole in the cap side that correspond to the points on the wing band and that anchors the cord in the plug. It's a fairly secure fit if you get it right.

You have to bend the spades about 90 degrees to get them under the screws and to keep the restraint from shorting out the spades. Then rest the restraint in the hole on the prong side of the plug. Then place the cap on and hope you get the other end in the hole in the cap.

It may take several tries. You'll get the hang of it.

I agree with David that 1965 is a good starting point for the 505A. I don't know when the "ear" version of the 283B started, but 1955 or 56 would be a guess. I haven't paid that much attention to the molded vs. screwed prongs to know when that changed. Many times the installer used what was on his truck, so we see all kinds of combinations. I've seen earless ones on 1958 phones that I'm sure were original because the seller said it belonged to her grandmother.

The painted or colored 283B is another variation. I think they were circa 1960-65 or so. They're sometimes seen on the early 701 and 702 Princesses.

A lot of people like the 505A because the spade prongs don't have to be bent. But it looks odd on a 1950s phone. I appreciate your attention to detail and historical accuracy and trying to use the right thing. I try to do the same thing, but it's not easy sometimes.
Jonathan

Offline RotarDad

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #51 on: November 05, 2012, 01:12:54 AM »
Thanks David and Jonathan for the great info!  That helps narrow it down quite a bit.  I didn't pay any attention to the plugs initially, just tossing them aside since I needed a modular jack box at the end to conveniently use the phones.  Over time, I've started to pay more attention to making things period-correct in terms of plugs, dial cards, etc.   The WE500 didn't really change dramatically over the years - it's the details that make the difference.  I appreciate your digging up (BSP and memory) the info!
« Last Edit: November 05, 2012, 01:27:37 AM by RotarDad »
Paul

Offline Sargeguy

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #52 on: February 27, 2013, 11:45:48 PM »
This is an essential piece of equipment for any of you who like to keep your 4-prong plug phones authentic yet still plug them into the 4-prong jack you have installed on your wall.  Or maybe you have a flush-mounted jack that you want to transform into a wall-wart.  This is the convenient solution for you:  It's the revolutionary 4-prong to 4-prong adapter:

« Last Edit: February 27, 2013, 11:51:32 PM by Sargeguy »
Greg Sargeant
Providence, RI
TCI /ATCA #4409

Offline Phonesrfun

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #53 on: February 27, 2013, 11:49:52 PM »
Ha ha.

That would be cute, but notice the exit hole for a cord.  This allows you to plug a phone into the 4-prong jack, and then piggy-back another one in on top of that.  Kind of a splitter of sorts, only piggy-back style.

-Bill G

Offline Sargeguy

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #54 on: February 27, 2013, 11:52:50 PM »
It took me a couple minutes to figure it out!
« Last Edit: February 27, 2013, 11:56:30 PM by Sargeguy »
Greg Sargeant
Providence, RI
TCI /ATCA #4409

Offline Phonesrfun

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #55 on: February 27, 2013, 11:55:15 PM »
I had to stare at it too.  It didn't just reach out and grab me.
-Bill G

Offline Sargeguy

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #56 on: February 27, 2013, 11:56:57 PM »
Probably for a fax machine!   ::)
Greg Sargeant
Providence, RI
TCI /ATCA #4409

Offline poplar1

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #57 on: September 21, 2013, 10:31:35 PM »
I found a source for 4-prong jacks - http://www.allentelproducts.com/catalog/dept_id_381/model_AT404B.htm - but does anyone know where I can get 4-prong plugs?  Not the modular-to-4-prong adapters, but the actual plugs themselves; either old or new.  I've had no luck.

Thanks!


Instead of $7.97, the same AT404B jack is $1.55 here:

http://www.allentel.com/store/en/allentelsc/Telephone-Jack-Assembly

However, even though the description says it is used with the AT283B plug, that  plug is apparently discontinued. And Suttle Equipment used to make both the 283B and the "newer" 505A style, but they no longer offer them.

In any case, the plugs are much easier to find than the jacks. The plugs are often found on phones but the jacks got left behind (on the wall).

The 283B was introduced around 1931 when 4-conductor cords were used for 202s. The 505A was introduced around 1965.
"C'est pas une restauration, c'est une rénovation."--François Martin.

Offline poplar1

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #58 on: September 22, 2013, 04:06:40 AM »
Pictures of 4-prong jacks and plugs:
"C'est pas une restauration, c'est une rénovation."--François Martin.

Offline Spanish_phones

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #59 on: December 02, 2013, 04:02:38 PM »
Here in Spain is really difficult to find the 4 prong plugs, and AL my WE phones were with wires but without the plug, so I converted them with wall phone connectors or little connection boxes

If anyone has extra 4plugs (male and female), I'm interested for my black 1960 500, my red ITT 1973 500, and a red Ericofon. ;) I have 4 AE starlites, but I don't know if they used to mount 4 prong plugs :)
« Last Edit: December 02, 2013, 05:38:49 PM by Spanish_phones »