Author Topic: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords  (Read 36951 times)

Offline AE_Collector

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #60 on: December 12, 2013, 04:22:57 PM »
Hi Spanish_phones.

Where are you in Spain? I was just in Cartagena and was very impressed with the city.

For the most part, 4 prong plugs and jacks weren't used on phones in North America. They were just used for "portable phones" that could be moved from room to room (for an additional monthly rental fee).  Most phones were hard wired to connecting blocks.

AE phones were sometimes wired to 4 Prong Plugs and Jacks as well.

Terry
« Last Edit: December 13, 2013, 01:04:58 PM by AE_Collector »

Offline Spanish_phones

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #61 on: December 12, 2013, 07:37:47 PM »
AE_Collector, I live in Madrid, the capital of Spain. I'm glad you've visited Spain! Cartagena is a nice city, but has nothing to do with big cities! jijji

I see your point. Here in Spain was really similar: the old ones were hard wired to the wall trough connecting blocks. Since the 60's, until RJ-11 was implanted, you could have both jacks or connecting blocks, just as you said: for changing the telephones from one room to another.

Offline twocvbloke

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #62 on: December 13, 2013, 04:40:14 AM »
Here in the UK before we got the Plug 431 (standard BT plug) when British Telecom came to be, phones were also hardwired in place for most people, but you could also get phones wired with a Plug 420 which you could connect to Jack No. 95a, for one phone, they only needed to wire up a standard phone with an appropriate line cable & plug, and fit a permanently wired bellset (this acted like the master socket we have today) with the ringers in phone and bellset wired in series so the line didn't appear "disconnected" (as in removed, not on-hook) to the exchange or to a GPO guy up a nearby telegraph pole when you were moving the phone from one room to another... :)

Though adding a 2nd phone to the mix just complicates matters with additional switches and wiring... :D

Offline m1898

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #63 on: December 16, 2013, 07:27:26 PM »
Poplar1, the fourth plug in post #58 looks exactly like the one I just got off ebay, complete with wires hooked to it.  Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm             Jim
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Offline jeremylivin

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #64 on: January 13, 2014, 07:34:55 PM »
Probably a silly question, but my 302 has a 4 prong plug, and I bought the 4 prong to RJ-11 adapter but I'm not sure how to plug it in.

There are 4 possible ways... Any help?
Jeremy Livingston

Offline AE_Collector

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #65 on: January 13, 2014, 08:52:44 PM »
The prongs have slightly different spacing so that there is only one way to plug it into a jack. Some have a moulded in "line" to indicate how to line the plug up with the jack.

Terry

Offline JimH

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #66 on: January 13, 2014, 11:44:08 PM »
With all this talk about Jacks, it got me thinking back to when we had the "hardwired" 500 in our kitchen.  I remember asking the telephone man why it didn't have a plug on it, when the 500 in my parent's bedroom did.  It was wired right in and you couldn't unplug it.   He told me the phone company liked to have at least one phone hardwired, but the others could have plugs.  I guess this was so you couldn't have all of your phones unplugged, thereby missing calls.  Obviously they abandoned this thinking when everything went modular.  I also remember being in PhoneCenter stores, they had modular adapters where the wires had color-coded connectors that snapped over the screws on the 42A connecting block, and the customers were told to cut the wires of an existing telephone and bring it in.  This was to eliminate an installer visit when establishing new service.
Jim H.

Offline Brinybay

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #67 on: January 14, 2014, 03:14:59 AM »
With all this talk about Jacks, it got me thinking back to when we had the "hardwired" 500 in our kitchen.  I remember asking the telephone man why it didn't have a plug on it, when the 500 in my parent's bedroom did.  It was wired right in and you couldn't unplug it.   He told me the phone company liked to have at least one phone hardwired, but the others could have plugs.  I guess this was so you couldn't have all of your phones unplugged, thereby missing calls.  ...

This sounded familiar, I remember reading a story about the requirement for one hardwired phone in the book The Rape of Ma Bell (Chapter 14, page 163 of the hard copy, pages 100-101 of the PDF version):

Quote
  True Story Number Two.
A member of Fred's family had to reach him, urgently. The person tried calling. No answer. No answer for hours. The caller was sure Fred was home and became concerned - concerned enough to get into his car and drive an hour and a half to Fred's house. There he found an unhurt, healthy Fred. What had happened? Hadn't he heard the phone ringing?

No, Fred hadn't because both of his phones had been unplugged.

It was all kind of silly, in a way. Fred had a large house with modular phone jacks in every room, but only two phone instruments. Fred and his wife would move the phones from room to room, depending on where they wanted to make a call. On this particular day, each had started to move a phone, were distracted, and didn't plug either back in, leaving them completely cut off from the telephone network and from the rest of their family.

Silly in a way, but serious as well. Fred's relative had to get in touch with him. It wasn't frivolous. It was important. Back in the old days, when Ma Bell owned all terminal equipment, this situation could not have happened. Then Ma Bell required the customer to have at least one telephone or ringer permanently wired. He could have as many jacks or portable phones as desired, but somewhere a ring had to be heard.

Back then Fred's service was protected and the entire network was better for Fred being a permanent part of it. That was back then. Here and now, Fred has the luxury of designing his own system - and forgetting to plug in his phones.
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e

Offline twocvbloke

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #68 on: January 14, 2014, 02:51:52 PM »
I can understand the reasoning behind hardwiring at least one phone, I prefer to have at least one wired phone always plugged in, even if I ignore it cos it's never for me... :)

As far as I'm aware, the reasoning behind hardwiring is that from a linesmans' point of view (or these days, an automated test facility, such as BT's), they can measure the resistance leading to a customer's home before sending out an engineer, if there's infinite resistance, then they assume the line is broken somewhere, these days they tend to put a 0.5REN equivalent resistor in wherever the line terminates (be it a NID or Demarc over there, or a Master socket over here), so there's always a load on the line to say "this line is connected" when the line is tested remotely, whether or not there's a phone connected to the line in the customers' premises... :)

Of course, there are some people who just wish to be left alone for the day (so they can get on with household stuff, or work on papers, or build sculptures and whatnot), so they unplug their phone(s), leaving them without any ringing to disturb them... :)

Offline WesternElectricBen

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #69 on: January 18, 2014, 11:41:02 AM »
With all this talk about Jacks, it got me thinking back to when we had the "hardwired" 500 in our kitchen.  I remember asking the telephone man why it didn't have a plug on it, when the 500 in my parent's bedroom did.  It was wired right in and you couldn't unplug it.   He told me the phone company liked to have at least one phone hardwired, but the others could have plugs.  I guess this was so you couldn't have all of your phones unplugged, thereby missing calls.  Obviously they abandoned this thinking when everything went modular.  I also remember being in PhoneCenter stores, they had modular adapters where the wires had color-coded connectors that snapped over the screws on the 42A connecting block, and the customers were told to cut the wires of an existing telephone and bring it in.  This was to eliminate an installer visit when establishing new service.

What you are talking about (phone center jacks) reminds me of this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IphPS58ZUc8

Ben

Offline JimH

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #70 on: January 18, 2014, 11:57:33 AM »
With all this talk about Jacks, it got me thinking back to when we had the "hardwired" 500 in our kitchen.  I remember asking the telephone man why it didn't have a plug on it, when the 500 in my parent's bedroom did.  It was wired right in and you couldn't unplug it.   He told me the phone company liked to have at least one phone hardwired, but the others could have plugs.  I guess this was so you couldn't have all of your phones unplugged, thereby missing calls.  Obviously they abandoned this thinking when everything went modular.  I also remember being in PhoneCenter stores, they had modular adapters where the wires had color-coded connectors that snapped over the screws on the 42A connecting block, and the customers were told to cut the wires of an existing telephone and bring it in.  This was to eliminate an installer visit when establishing new service.

What you are talking about (phone center jacks) reminds me of this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IphPS58ZUc8

Ben
That's exactly it!  Those snap on connectors remind me of little 505A four-prong plugs!
« Last Edit: January 18, 2014, 11:30:06 PM by JimH »
Jim H.

Offline twocvbloke

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #71 on: January 18, 2014, 08:21:52 PM »
What you are talking about (phone center jacks) reminds me of this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IphPS58ZUc8

Ben

Makes me wonder how many DIYers snipped all the wires and found they had no service when they snapped on those clips... ;D

Offline Scotophor

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #72 on: April 02, 2014, 04:26:46 AM »
The prongs have slightly different spacing so that there is only one way to plug it into a jack. Some have a moulded in "line" to indicate how to line the plug up with the jack.

Terry
Be careful though, sometimes the "key" line is moulded in the wrong place! It should be on the opposite side away from the pair of prongs with the narrowest spacing. However, I have a "4-prong to 4-prong adapter" (piggyback plug) similar to the one Sargeguy showed above, made in Japan, with the key line in the wrong position.
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Offline poplar1

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #73 on: May 21, 2014, 08:36:42 AM »
No doubt the 404A jack and 283A plug appeared c. 1931 along with 684As and 202s.

From TCI library:

1934 article in the Bell Labs Record about 4-prong plugs and jacks:

http://www.telephonecollectors.info/index.php/document-repository/doc_details/11289-34jul-blr-p343-jacks-and-plugs-for-portable-telephones

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BSP C36.201 Issue 1 Feb.1932==Jacks and Plugs for Inside Locations:

http://www.telephonecollectors.info/index.php/document-repository/doc_details/4597-c36-201-i1-feb32-jacks-plugs-inside-loc

Includes 403A flush mounted and 404A surface mounted jacks

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Jacks and Plugs--Installation

http://www.telephonecollectors.info/index.php/document-repository/doc_view/4636-c36-245-i1-feb32-jacksandplugstypesforinsidelocations-installation
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unbeldi

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Re: Modular Adapters and 4 Prong Plugs/Jacks for Spade Cords
« Reply #74 on: May 21, 2014, 12:14:37 PM »
Here is a time line I have been maintaining for the type 283 four-prong plugs.


==Time line of the 283-type plug==

*1931: 283A plug introduced for 202 AST telephones with 684A subsets. It was a four contact plug that had indentations which served as a grip when pulling the plug from a jack. To facilitate the connection of cord conductors, color designations are stamped adjacent to the terminals of these new types of plugs.

*1932 February: BSP C36.201 formally describes plugs and jacks for portable telephones. Available colors of 283A: black (-3) and old brass (-6).

*1934: A BLR article discusses the development of connectors for portable telephones (BLR 12(7), July 1934, p.343).

*1935: Catalog No. 9: 283A plugs were furnished with 202 desk sets upon order with a D4T type cord of corresponding color. Standard issue color was D4T-9 and 283A-3 plug.

*1935-1939: transition from 283A to 283B plug. The 283B plug has an external rim, mid-surface, around the plug, rather then indentations, to provide friction for pulling it from a socket.

*1939: Catalog No. 10 shows 283B plugs in colors ivory (-4), old brass (-6), and brown (-9).

*1950: Catalog No.11: ivory (-4), old-brass (-6), and brown (-9) colors available. Used with cords D2E, D3AM, D3AP, D4W, D4AJ.

*1950s: 283B plug is modified to have the pins molded into the plastic, rather than secured with a nut.

*1957: The Graybar catalog 12-T shows 283B plugs in ivory (-4) and brown (-9) only. Still has old-style grip lines (no 'ears').

*late 50s: The mid-surface rim is changed to 'ears' on two sides to provide grips, and the cord exit is open (U-shaped) to avoid having to thread the cord through the exit hole, thus the cover simply slides onto the base plate.

*1962: A 1966 New York Telephone supply catalog lists 283B-42 (beige), -50 (ivory), and -54 (brown) colors, as of 5/62 (page date). colors -50 and -54 supersede -4 and -9, respectively.

*1967: Available colors: black (-3), Green (-51), Yellow (-56), White (-58), Pink (-59), Lt. Beige (-60), Lt. Gray (-61), Aqua Blue (-62), and Turquoise (-64). Usage is documented with D3BP, D4BK, D3BU, D4BP cords. (BSP 461-630-105 Issue 1, February 1967).   The 505A type plug is described and available for the same function. It has better features, including screw-less connection of spade terminals, and a cord fastener. The 505A may have appeared in 1965, acc. to collector reports.

*1969: The 283B plug is listed MD (BSP 461-630-105 Issue 2, February 1969).

*Later BSPs still mention the 283B (MD), if only in a list without discussion.

*1983 (but probably even earlier): The 505A plug is listed MD (BSP 461-630-100 Issue 12).

[other collectors helped in providing some details and references.]
« Last Edit: March 15, 2015, 03:26:29 PM by unbeldi »