Author Topic: W.E. Type 124 questions  (Read 825 times)

Offline wds

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W.E. Type 124 questions
« on: June 27, 2017, 07:50:29 PM »
Picked up this nice Type 124 wood phone, and it is a little different than my other one, or others that I have seen and was wondering is someone could tell me why it might be different - maybe an older or newer model.  First, the spring for the receiver arm is bolted on instead of the usual two wood screws on the inside only.  Second, the transmitter mounting bracket has a different profile.  Although everything about the bracket seems correct, even the stud on the inside for the wire to the hinge.  Last, the patent information and other stamps are not engraved like my other WE phones.  You can barely feel the engraving - it almost looks like the dates were stamped on instead of engraved. 
« Last Edit: July 01, 2017, 09:23:45 AM by wds »
Dave

Offline RB

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2017, 09:19:41 AM »
Sweet box! :)
Don't know squat about it, but very nice wood.
It would make a nice display anywhere.

Offline rdelius

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2017, 05:04:11 PM »
I think the origional switch was removed-look at the screw holes for the older bronze casting around the larger hole.Possibly the tx mount is a reproduction

Offline Sargeguy

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2017, 10:18:12 PM »
The transmitter mount also looks non-standard
Greg Sargeant
Providence, RI
TCI /ATCA #4409

Alex G. Bell

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2017, 10:48:04 PM »
The transmitter mount also looks non-standard
Yes, the transmitter mounts I've seen always had 2 flat faces on the front to limit tipping the transmitter too far up or down because it does not work well if not reasonably vertical and also possible damage to the transmitter leads.  This mount would seem to permit tipping it up or down until  the edge of the faceplate touched the front surface of the box.  I've never seen one that permitted that.

Offline wds

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2017, 07:21:42 PM »
I had checked the receiver arm mount, and the bolt holding the spring is original - there are no other holes under the spring, or anywhere around it.  It is completely original.  I have compared all the parts with my other 124 and other WE wood phones, and everything appears original.  The profile of the transmitter mount is different than you would usually see on a WE wood phone, but I don't see anything that would jump out and say it's a repro.  All holes are identical to the more common w.e. mount.  Although the transmitter mount might not be a W.E., is it possible that this mount was installed to provide greater range of movement for the transmitter?  Quite an interesting phone.
« Last Edit: June 29, 2017, 08:32:28 PM by wds »
Dave

Offline Sargeguy

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2017, 11:36:56 PM »
It has a WE type notch for the transmitter mounting bolt.
Greg Sargeant
Providence, RI
TCI /ATCA #4409

Alex G. Bell

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2017, 01:49:26 PM »
The profile of the transmitter mount is different than you would usually see on a WE wood phone, but I don't see anything that would jump out and say it's a repro.  All holes are identical to the more common w.e. mount.  Although the transmitter mount might not be a W.E., is it possible that this mount was installed to provide greater range of movement for the transmitter?  Quite an interesting phone.
I doubt that they would have wanted to provide a greater movement range after the typical ones we are familiar with was in production since transmitter performance would probably suffer at the extreme ends and they would probably recognize that as a problem. 

I'd suggest an possible explanation based on an opposite sequence of events:  perhaps it's a very early example of a WE-made mount before they recognized the need to limit the pivoting of the transmitter and produced the version we all know with two flat faces at about 120.

Perhaps someone has other early phones to inspect for this detail or catalogs showing the part to help determine whether they evolved from this round shape to the common flat-faced one.

It might be interesting to see photos of the mount with the transmitter cup in place pushed up and down to the extremes to show just what the angle of the transmitter is when this is done.

Offline wds

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2017, 08:57:35 AM »
Here you go.  The earliest catalog I have is 1908, which still shows the 293.  Maybe someone else has an older catalog.
Dave

Alex G. Bell

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2017, 09:15:37 AM »
Here you go.  The earliest catalog I have is 1908, which still shows the 293.  Maybe someone else has an older catalog.
Great photos!  Very very interesting! 

It's pretty clear that they would not have wanted the transmitter tilted so far off vertical when you look at the much narrower range it's limited to on desk stands and later wall transmitter mounts.  This is necessary because when it's tilted so far carbon granules are not distributed properly between the carbon buttons, transmitter resistance goes way up and transmission suffers.  On a CB phone it theoretically could even appear to be on hook if the resistance becomes high enough. 

An old timer who is no longer with us, who cut his teeth at Kellogg, said that in the days when solid back transmitters were the state of the art, Kellogg boasted that they had an "all position transmitter" but WE/AT&T did not.  I think they may have run ads showing desk stands being held in very off-vertical positions while the caller chatted in relaxed "casual" conversations rather than sitting stiffly at a desk or table.

I don't have an older catalog either.  Perhaps another CRPF member who focuses on these older sets does.  I have a 124 too but didn't notice this detail and it's put away at this moment.

Offline unbeldi

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #10 on: July 03, 2017, 09:43:25 AM »
Here you go.  The earliest catalog I have is 1908, which still shows the 293.  Maybe someone else has an older catalog.

You're unlikely to find an older telephony catalog from WECo, except for the supposedly first catalog of 1882 and perhaps a few other published before WECo became the exclusive manufacturer for the Bell System.  Until 1907 they were prohibited from selling telephone equipment to anyone outside the Bell System, and I think the change in 1907, which was at the doing of newly installed president Vail with his vision of universal telephone service using common standards, prompted them to start publishing catalogs for the independent market in 1907/1908. The catalogs of this time are not numbered, but several editions exist, clearly published in short succession, with only some price changes.

If you do have some catalogs not accounted for HERE, please do discuss there for updates to the table.


Offline Sargeguy

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #11 on: July 03, 2017, 09:53:06 AM »
I do agree that it does look similar to the standard version and could be an early version.  Maybe this was a field test version?
Greg Sargeant
Providence, RI
TCI /ATCA #4409

Alex G. Bell

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2017, 10:02:02 AM »
You're unlikely to find an older telephony catalog from WECo, except for the supposedly first catalog of 1882 and perhaps a few other published before WECo became the exclusive manufacturer for the Bell System.
Accordingly, it looks like attempting to date this different transmitter mount version will have to be based on the examples other CRPF members have in their collections. 

It might help if WDS inspected this one carefully for a code marking.  I think the code is normally stamped on the back surface, which would require unscrewing it from the box.  Page 111 of the 1908 catalog shows the 3-A transmitter bracket we have all seen in the past.  If for example this one was marked just "3" without the "A" that would strongly suggest it is an earlier version.

Offline wds

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #13 on: July 03, 2017, 11:23:32 AM »
When I cleaned it up I looked for a code, but couldn't find one - but I will double check to be sure.  The stud threaded in the back like the later version.
Dave

Offline Sargeguy

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Re: W.E. Type 124 questions
« Reply #14 on: July 03, 2017, 07:14:14 PM »
The patent dates indicate that something is up with this phone.  Most compact wall phones have an early date of 1890 and a late date of 1901. 
Greg Sargeant
Providence, RI
TCI /ATCA #4409