Author Topic: GTE 120B: Here I go again  (Read 895 times)

Offline mentalstampede

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GTE 120B: Here I go again
« on: April 25, 2017, 03:21:52 PM »
I took a chance on an advertised Automatic Electric 120 type phone. Seller advertised that is had two keys with it, but they didn't seem to open anything. I ended up buying it based on exterior photos alone, and ended up with this.

Exterior wise, it's a very good condition 120B. Much to my surprise, the two keys included were both to the vault lock, and no key to the upper housing was present. Fortunately, or unfortunately depending on perspective, looking through the holes on the back of the housing showed that the interior of the phone was completely gutted. No chassis, no coin mech, no escrow assembly. This allowed me to insert a long screwdriver through the wiring hole and bend the locking lever out of the way. So I've got an open phone that should display nicely, an extra key for the vault, and I didn't have to drill a single thing.

On the other hand, I now need to source pretty much all of the internal components.
My name is Kenn, and I like telephones.

“Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.” --Robert Heinlein

Offline mentalstampede

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2017, 03:59:55 PM »
Does anyone know if Quadrum parts also fit in a 120B?
My name is Kenn, and I like telephones.

“Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.” --Robert Heinlein

Offline RotarDad

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2017, 12:10:09 AM »
I have also been spanked by the "external only" photos on the first  3-slot I bought.  Like you, I knew better but couldn't pass up the great condition and good price.  I got it put back together, which was very satisfying, and I learned a lot. Yours does look very nice also.  Keep us informed on your progress!
Paul

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2017, 08:28:40 PM »
This may be a little bit of a long shot, but could it be a display model? Does it look like it was ever used as a payphone, or is there any evidence of anything actually being installed inside?
Christian

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

Offline mentalstampede

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2017, 11:22:58 PM »
If it was ever installed, it was very gently used. It's hard to tell if there's ever been anything mounted internally. At any rate, I've ordered a hopper, coin mech, and relay since those look like quadrum parts will fit and work. Finding a good "dumb" chassis is the difficult part right now.

This may be a little bit of a long shot, but could it be a display model? Does it look like it was ever used as a payphone, or is there any evidence of anything actually being installed inside?
« Last Edit: May 01, 2017, 12:40:30 AM by mentalstampede »
My name is Kenn, and I like telephones.

“Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.” --Robert Heinlein

Offline mentalstampede

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2017, 05:13:37 PM »
I'm getting the cart before the horse a little bit, but this is going to be a nice looking phone anyway. I'm super pleased with how well these homebrew instruction cards came out looking.
My name is Kenn, and I like telephones.

“Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.” --Robert Heinlein

Offline mentalstampede

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #6 on: May 08, 2017, 10:10:31 PM »
Progress. Still trying to get my hands on a dumb chassis, but everything else is in place and ready to go!
My name is Kenn, and I like telephones.

“Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.” --Robert Heinlein

Offline DoubleTone

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2017, 04:15:02 AM »
I have one of these 120B GTEs.  It also had those nice, distinctive half-height keys.  But have you noticed the keypad connector?  Seventeen pin, isn't it?  You won't find a replacement board with a 17-pin connector socket.  (Does anything require a 17-pin connector socket?)  I installed a Protel 7000 and had to replace the keypad , plus the upper housing faceplate to accommodate the new keypad's square keys.  My phone was all-original and complete when I got it, but that included the original GTE board, which of course did have a 17-pin keypad socket but which couldn't be programmed without the GTE software.  I even have the complete GTE manual, but programming the original board through the keypad required a "programming pod" (no doubt an LCD screen) or a credit card display screen to see what you're doing and read the phone's feedback.  I couldn't find either device despite several years of hoping and searching.

I very much wish I could have found a way to reuse the original keypad.  But without documentation about the keypad wiring, refitting the keypad with a 25-pin D-Sub plug that the Protel expected wasn't an adventure I wanted to take on. 

I'm a little reluctant to say any of this because I don't want to spoil your own adventure with this phone, but if you do find a way to reuse the original keypad, I'll be eager to know the details.

Offline mentalstampede

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #8 on: May 09, 2017, 08:34:06 AM »
That's the thing. I'm not interested in a smart board of any type. The original GTE board for 120B phones was a "dumb" board for use with traditional coin lines. That's the chassis I'm trying to find.
My name is Kenn, and I like telephones.

“Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.” --Robert Heinlein

Offline DoubleTone

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #9 on: May 09, 2017, 01:24:39 PM »
Quote
The original GTE board for 120B phones was a "dumb" board for use with traditional coin lines.

As I said, I have the original GTE board, and it's not a dumb board.

Offline mentalstampede

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #10 on: May 09, 2017, 03:05:04 PM »
I suppose GTE probably produced smart boards as well, but the 120 type phones date back to the early 1970s. That was way before "smart" payphones were a really a thing. Surely there exists a plain old "dumb​" chassis for these phones. I have seen reference to a 120C chassis, maybe that's the original smart board you have for yours?
My name is Kenn, and I like telephones.

“Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.” --Robert Heinlein

Offline DoubleTone

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #11 on: May 09, 2017, 03:39:19 PM »
What I have started life as a 120B. Good luck with your project.

Offline xhausted110

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #12 on: May 09, 2017, 06:23:27 PM »
I suppose GTE probably produced smart boards as well, but the 120 type phones date back to the early 1970s. That was way before "smart" payphones were a really a thing. Surely there exists a plain old "dumb​" chassis for these phones. I have seen reference to a 120C chassis, maybe that's the original smart board you have for yours?

Dumb chassis definately do exist, and they're quite common I believe.
- Evan

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Offline mentalstampede

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #13 on: May 09, 2017, 06:40:27 PM »
Dumb chassis definately do exist, and they're quite common I believe.

That said, the one in the picture DoubleTone posted sure looks like a smart board to me, especially since it's also equipped with a low-voltage relay. You learn something new everyday. If I find a good source for a dumb chassis I'll be sure to let you guys know where.
My name is Kenn, and I like telephones.

“Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something.” --Robert Heinlein

Offline DoubleTone

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Re: GTE 120B: Here I go again
« Reply #14 on: May 09, 2017, 09:13:12 PM »
It looks like a smart board because it is, as I said at the start.