Author Topic: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?  (Read 972 times)

Offline Doug Rose

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I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« on: August 01, 2017, 02:57:48 PM »
I was at a Flea Market in 1979 and found a Manual WE 302 in nice shape. After a few times trying I got the phone to work. I was thrilled. At the time I lived in an apartment. My girlfriend held the wires, middle of summer, hot and sweaty. I went to my neighbors apartment and called.


I can still remember the scream of 90 volts to sweaty hands. I wonder why that relationship didn't work out??

What was you first collectable phone?.....Doug

Kidphone

Offline Owain

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #1 on: August 01, 2017, 04:10:50 PM »
I got given one as a teenager but, as I didn't have any technical knowledge to make it work at the time, used the PCB for (de)soldering practice. However I kept it and the case has now gone on to make another phone.

Paid £60 in a junk shop for a Tele 332.
http://www.britishtelephones.com/t332.htm

That was in the 'before Ebay' days.

Offline twocvbloke

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #2 on: August 01, 2017, 04:38:02 PM »
First one I bought, a red BT Viscount, first one I had though, a two-tone grey 746 that I'm not entirely sure where it came from, or where it went, shame really, it was a good phone, just needed the gongs adjusting and at the time I didn't know how to take it apart... :-\

Still have the Viscount though, it's a nostalgic phone for me as it's what I remember growing up with and we had it for many years before it too disappeared, so I had to get my own... :)

Offline HarrySmith

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #3 on: August 01, 2017, 05:06:07 PM »
I thought I already posted to this topic but I don't see it. Apologies if it comes through twice.

The first phone I picked up was a European phone from the 1930's. I think it was Danish. My wife & I attended a local auction very 2 weeks. We bought all kinds of stuff and sold on eBay. This neat looking phone came up and I bid on it. Won it for the opening bid, $5.00. I started to clean it up and decided to see if I could get it working. I joined ATCA & TCI looking for information on it. I did identify it and got some useful info to list it but I could not get it to function. It cleaned up nice and I sold it for around $90.00. I picked up a half dozen 500's from a club member after that and it was off to the races!
Harry Smith
ATCA 4434
TCI

"There is no try,
there is only
do or do not"

Offline mentalstampede

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #4 on: August 01, 2017, 05:56:28 PM »
My first "collectible" is a Western Electric 302 I picked up on ebay about ten years ago.  I did my homework beforehand and knew what I wanted, although I wasn't planning on ever having a collection. I knew enough to know I wanted one with a metal body, and I ended up with one from late 1939. The cords were garbage, but aside from the #4 dial all of the components have 1939 dates. Of course, one thing led to another and I now have a house full of old telephones.
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

Online Jim Stettler

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #5 on: August 01, 2017, 08:22:29 PM »
My first phone related item was a mountain states safety cone I found it in the summer of "69 when I was eight. I still have it

Around age 12 I got my first phone was a 302 bought from the goodwill garage sale for $2.00 the housing was cracked and one of the transmitter contacts was broken.
I took a brass tab and made a new contact. i don't know if I still have it.

Around age 13-14 I got my second phone. I still have it. A green WE 500. It has an extra set of contacts so I packed it with a green repertory  dialer.


Jim S.
You live, You learn,
You die, you forget it all.

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2017, 09:09:37 PM »
The first collectible phone I bought was a dates-matching 1954 500 from an antique store. I forgot how it happened, but the handset cord boot was damaged (probably my fault) or missing (I don't know how, but I bet it was still my fault...), so I had to use one from a junk ITT radio controller my Dad found.
Christian Petterson

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

Offline AL_as_needed

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2017, 10:10:22 PM »
My first phone was the 7-63 matching (mostly) black WE 500 L/M, as pictured on my profile pic. It is also one of the only phones I really know the full history on too, which makes it that much more special. I rotate through the ever growing collection to put different phones into service to give them some line time, but my L/M is almost always on duty.
TWinbrook7

Offline jsowers

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2017, 11:18:56 PM »
I have been nuts about telephones since childhood, when all my other relatives on my mom's side had Bell System phones and we didn't. The first phones I ever had were some 202-like Select-O-Phone intercom phones my uncle connected together with some wire to a Burgess dry cell and made it so it could transmit and receive. It was very low volume and never interested me much. Like an idiot, I cut through the cloth mounting cords to free the subsets so I didn't have to drag them around with the phones. That's the last time I ever did that. I think those phones were $5 for both, back in 1972 or so.

My first decent phones in my collection as an adult were two Tenite WE phones I found in the same Goodwill on different weekends in 1999. One was ivory and one green with gray cords. The green one still had the PArk 4 number card turned around in it. The ivory one had a rotten coil cord that smelled and I replaced it with a white one that had faded to ivory and looked OK. I put them in my office phone collection until I was told to take them all down by my boss and the HR director, so I took them all home and now they sit in boxes in the garage. I have been gladly retired for almost four glorious years.

Below is a cropped picture of the two phones side by side. They have cracks in the back, but they're the first ones. I think they were $3 each.
Jonathan

Offline compubit

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #9 on: August 02, 2017, 12:11:44 AM »
I have 2:

The first phone I received: a Stromberg Carlson 1543 from my grandparents when I was in high school. I took that thing apart many times, but somehow along the way lost my connections, so had to figure out what connected to which terminal. I liked that all of the parts (hookswitch, bell, network, dial, etc.) were removable, and I could "build" different designs.  One time I even rebuilt it
To look like an 851 out of peg-board, dowels, and other pieces of scrap wood: I mounted the dial in the front piece of pegboard and. Ousted the hookswitch on the bottom, so the handset hung up like an 851. We were in GTE territory at the time, and recall the design from TV.

The first phone I purchased for collection reasons: (not counting the Stromberg 1654 for my first apartment in college from Radio Shack) Western Electric Red Touch Tone Princess (with translucent keypad and light). I actually leased it for 2 months so that I could purchase it, after seeing the "new and improved" CS princess models at stores - with the white opaque buttons that didn't depress and didn't light up.  Little did I know that down the road there'd be this thing called the internet, and then eBay...

Along the way, I've had too many phones come and go (including 2 boxes of phones that did not make it from Texas to Virginia 6 years ago...): Comkey 416 secondary phone, several of the later design-line phones from the mid to late 80s, Touch-a-Matic 32, grey Western Electric 510 (?) with the "secure" number card. Way too many to remember!
A phone phanatic since I was less than 2 (thanks to Fisher Price); collector since a teenager; now able to afford to play!
Favorite Phone: Western Electric Trimline - it just feels right holding it up to my face!

Offline 19and41

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #10 on: August 31, 2017, 08:08:27 PM »
My first was a German WWII field phone.  I bought it at a flea market in Frankfurt in 1976.  I also found a BC-611 walkie-talkie that day.  Had a heck of a time bringing those back home.
"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."
— Arthur C. Clarke

Offline dsk

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #11 on: September 01, 2017, 01:19:10 AM »
Yes I remember:
As a boy I got 2 magneto phones (not old) and some wire from my fathers "fishing mate" (Is that correct English for some you use to go fishing with?)
After some years I bought a wall, magneto phone from 1905, the first i bought! I used pretty much of my savings to that instead of for new bike witch would cost about the same)


dsk

Offline Phonesrfun

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #12 on: September 01, 2017, 02:52:23 AM »
Ok, here's my story and I ain't changing it.  Probably about 1963 I was about 12 years old and my friend and I were going through the trash at school on the last day of the school year and found that a teacher had thrown out someone's science fair project that got left behind.  It was a home-made telegraph.  We scavenged it from the trash and took it home and thought we would connect the pair of telegraph keys and sounders between our houses.  We were next-door neighbors.  We did.  We scrounged many feet of extension cord wire and any kind of wire we could get our hands on and spliced the whole thing together to run between the houses, got a battery and we made it work.


One thing led to another and we wanted to talk to each other rather than try to learm Morse code.  (Eventually I did learn the code later when I got my ham ticket).  Any way, we were able to scrounge some old phones and connected those to our very bad wire that really had a lot of crackling when ever it rained.  Many times we were out in the back yard along the fence in the middle of the night in the middle of a rain storm or snow storm trying to find that bad splice.  Eventually we were able to scrounge from phone company installers enough wire to have mostly a single run between the houses and we learned some techniques for good splicing and taping.


Our system still had a major drawback.  We could not ring each other.  We had to call each other on our parent's phone and tell the other to meet on our phone and later we devised a way to make a doorbell ring over the same wire, but we wanted to have the actual phones ring instead of a doorbell.


A phone guy told us about magnetos and wood wall phones.  I convinced my mom to take me to an antuique store and buy any old wood wall phone as long as it had a magneto in it.  She did, but made me pay for it.  I remember it was $40 back in 1963. It is a 1928 Leich wood wall set.


I hooked it up to our line and presto, it worked!  My friend and I called around and found a magneto ringer box at an independent phone company that had been up in the attic of a back storage building. They gave it to him and now we both had a way to ring each other.


We had that phone line between houses for several years, right through high school.


I still have that Leich wood wall phone today.  It is mounted on the wall in my downstairs den, and yes, it still functions, and I have used it with my WE 317 many times to demonstrate local battery phones.


True story.  1963 to 2017 is 54 years.  Yikes!
-Bill G

Offline skyrider

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Re: I Remember the First Collectable Phone I Bought..... Do You?
« Reply #13 on: September 01, 2017, 12:46:06 PM »
Too long ago and too many phones ago.


Bill