Author Topic: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80  (Read 638 times)

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« on: December 22, 2017, 04:48:54 PM »
I found this one on eBay, and got it as a pity purchase more or less. I believe it's been listed and re-listed several times since Spring or early Summer, going down from nearly $60 to just $35. I knew about the chrome retainer ring before, but noticed the lack of center holes in the handset caps. The other major plus was the much earlier painted black rubber handset cord. I think people were running for the hills when they saw the ugly dial sticker. I offered $25, and the seller accepted.

www.ebay.com/itm/122821853493

I was surprised that, despite being two days before Christmas Eve, the phone arrived a day earlier than expected. I'd expect USPS to be completely clogged with Christmas packages right about now.

While it's far beyond being usable or displayable, the cord still shows that the phone is from 1957-58, which I believe is the earliest variation of colored AE80s. Garnet Red doesn't seem to be seen very often among early 80s, so $25 was a great deal to me!
Christian Petterson

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Offline dlvh

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2017, 05:04:17 PM »
Please show us what it looks like when you are done cleaning it all up, Christian. I'm sure she'll turn out beautiful!

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2017, 05:19:43 PM »
Lots of good stuff there. I saw it languishing on eBay as well.

Those rubber cords and dry rot go together unfortunately. I have a Jade Green and a colonial blue with the painted black rubber cords and both are in big time trouble. I wonder if there is anything (armorall?) that can be put on the cords to keep Parts that are still intact from further deteriorating.

This one looks pretty much untouched except for the swap to a modular cord. Chrome plunger buttons, manual compensator, early (brass wheel rather than white plastic) adjustable ringer so that ensures that it is a SL ringer. Wasn’t shipped with a ringer but fortunately it received an early SL ringer right away.

Also note the dating of the base with BP7, a holdover from pre 80/90 era AE phones that very quickly changed to the more common 10-61-7 type date codes.

See if you can find more “two letter” date codes elsewhere when you go over it. Capacitors, handset capsules, possibly on the dial etc. You likely will have (sort of or used to be) clear plastic dust covers on hook switch contacts and the back of the dial as well.

A nice old AE 80 for sure!

Terry

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2017, 09:14:15 PM »
Thanks guys! I'm already working on it! ;D

I also noticed the brass ringer adjustment wheel when I was taking the "before" shots. It's definitely the first one I've seen! The only marking on the base that I was previously familiar with is "NXX", which I know means the phone was shipped without a ringer. I would normally remove the ringer to bring it to factory spec, but this is the closest it'll ever come to having a factory ringer.

So, BP7 would mean 1957? AE didn't really get the idea of a standardized marking system, did they? They had, what, 10 different variations of base date markings over the course of the 80's lifetime? ::)

This is also my first AE with the painted handset cord. My others have the later neoprene cords, which were still prone to splitting and stiffening!
I have several cords from some ITT radio control units that are similar size and stiffness to what AE seemed to use. I used the odd handset boots from them already, so some quick adjustments to strain relief/conductor lengths will be enough to make one a nice replacement for my 80's cord.
Christian Petterson

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Offline TelePlay

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2017, 10:06:18 PM »
Those rubber cords and dry rot go together unfortunately. I have a Jade Green and a colonial blue with the painted black rubber cords and both are in big time trouble. I wonder if there is anything (armorall?) that can be put on the cords to keep Parts that are still intact from further deteriorating.

At least two things going on with aging cords.

The first is the plastisizer degrading or evaporating from the cord. That new car smell is/are the plastisizers and if you can smell them, they are leaving the material in which they were mixed to keep it flexible. When the plastisizer is reduced, the cord gets stiff. The solution is getting a plastisizer back into the cord. This has been discussed on the forum in the past.

The second is chemical breakdown of the cord material, rot. This is due to age and whomever compounding the cord material not checking it for survival exceeding a couple of decades, if even one. No way to stop the rot. It fits all by itself and the movement or flexing the cord results in it cracking and falling apart.

Old tube radios with the then newer rubber coated wires (used to first reiplace cloth wires) are usually extremely brittle with chunks falling off with the slightest movement - can be stabilized with liquid tape but it's not a pretty fix, replacement is best but time consuming).

Phone cords with rot can not be fixed short of cutting off a rotted end and nothing can be used to slow down, retard, stop or reverse the rot.

            John . . .

              

Offline rdelius

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2017, 11:58:36 PM »
I am in Durham NC former GTE territory and Red type 80 sets were difficult to find.Not offered in later years here.Good luck on cords. Might be easier to find in Canada where red sets are more common on Ebay.That ringer adjustment wheel was an option and could be added or removed on SL ringers.Older were metal,newer plastic

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #6 on: December 23, 2017, 01:20:59 PM »
So, BP7 would mean 1957? AE didn't really get the idea of a standardized marking system, did they? They had, what, 10 different variations of base date markings over the course of the 80's lifetime? ::)

BP7: No...not even close. BP has been determined to be a date code but the actual date it represents still eludes me. I think I have enough info to actually figure it out, I just need to get back at that project again and get all my notes together. The 7 is pretty much determined to be an assembly line indication. Some plant locations had multiple assembly lines.

Date Formats used just on AE80’s: Initially I laughed thinking “nowhere near ten just on 80’s”. I thought Only Two...oh wait, no there were three....then if you include 80E’s as well as 80’s, there were Four! So..Yes, they had a hard time picking and sticking to a standard!

Of course the exact same can be said of AE’s model number choices for phones. A fresh start in 1925 or do with model #1. Before long they figured the year of design at the beginning with a sequential number afterwards was the way to go such as 34A3 and 35A5. As they got to model 40 (in 1939 ish) they must have decided that “40” sounded better than “39” so...well, close enough I guess but in the next year or so the new wall version seemed better if it was an incremebtnof 10 to “50”. This stuck going forward to model 80 & 90 now totally leaving the year of design in the dust. Models such as the 43 space saver incremented to 83 with the newer style handsets. Then a complete redesign and what to number it...183 sounds good but let’s confuse things and call it an 830 on the back plate. This worked well so time to redesign the 88 speakerphone. 188? Nope...don’t like the sound of that...880! 86 and 87 Key sets redesign? 186 and 187 sounds acceptable for them.

Anyway...you get the idea...

Terry

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #7 on: December 23, 2017, 03:51:17 PM »
Well, if you count the various places AE decided to put date stamps on the base, and the inconsistent lack of base dates at times, as well as strange assembly line indication markings (which I thought were base dates), there were well over ten! But, those are just ink marking layout variations. Still, far less consistent than WE...  ;D

The back of the dial plate has "903-F", and the dial mount has "F4", although I doubt either one is related to dates at all. Those are the only ink markings I could find inside.
Christian Petterson

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Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #8 on: December 23, 2017, 06:24:06 PM »
I got everything except for the cord(s) finished. The plastics are polished and waxed, and I was able to remove the dried glue on the dial bezel, and the scotch tape residue on the side of the housing. The glue was like Polane: Impossible to remove without damaging the plastic underneath. I wanted to preserve the matte finish, but it was impossible with every method I tried. I wound up sanding the glue off, and lightly polished the bezel after sanding with 800 grit, just to eliminate the "freshly sanded" look. ;D I think it looks pretty close to the original finish.

The dye I'm using isn't soaking into the cord. It's an old mixture of RIT dye and
Lacquer Thinner (I believe). It's about 4 years old now, so it may have gone bad.
Christian Petterson

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Offline RotarDad

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #9 on: December 23, 2017, 06:44:21 PM »
Wow, Christian, That is stunning!  Great job.  I like the matte bezel.  Is that shell/handset finish done using your denatured alcohol approach?  I bought a can recently, but haven't tried it yet.
« Last Edit: December 23, 2017, 06:47:46 PM by RotarDad »
Paul

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #10 on: December 23, 2017, 08:54:22 PM »
I second that Paul....superb!
Kidphone

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2017, 09:58:27 PM »
Yes very nice! How many can I send you to spiff up for me over the holidays?

Terry

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2017, 11:20:08 PM »
Thanks!

I actually didn't use Denatured Alcohol on this at all. I tried it on one side, but it didn't get me the results I wanted. I just wetsanded/polished the glue residue and polished everything else.

From what I've found, DA gets very different results on different colors of Tenite, and especially on Tenite from different manufacturers. For example; the DA process works fantastic on Western Electric Black and Mahogany Brown (taking off the oxidized layer and leaving a smooth finish without swirls behind), while I find lighter colors get rid of the oxidation, but leave some swirls behind, which can be polished out. Either way, you get results that are more reflective than just polishing the oxidized layer.

For Automatic Electric, it seems like the variations in plastic between colors is far different than Western Electric. When I polished my '59 Ivory 80, the DA process left a few swirls behind, but after liquid polish, it looked great. I tried using the same method on my Garnet Red, but it made the surface unevenly porous, which was impossible to polish out. I ended up using 2000 grit followed by polish on the area I DA'ed.

In short, the process is fairly consistent for WE Tenite, but not for AE. It works best on dark WE colors, pretty well on lighter WE, and pretty inconsistently on AE.

As you can see in the 'before' shots, the plastics didn't have the same surface oxidation that WE Tenite usually has, so Denatured Alcohol wasn't really necessary.

How many can I send you to spiff up for me over the holidays?

Terry

As many as you're willing to give me! ;) ;D
« Last Edit: December 23, 2017, 11:23:10 PM by WEBellSystemChristian »
Christian Petterson

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2017, 11:29:56 PM »
I knew the "finished" pics would look fantastic...& you didn't let me down!

Interesting about the DA process on different makes and colors...

Benny
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Offline Haf

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Re: Tenite Garnet Red Type 80
« Reply #14 on: December 24, 2017, 07:32:33 AM »
Christian,

yeah, I'm always impressed by the results your're doing too. Just WOW! Btw, did you ever try using 00 or 000 steel wool for the dial bezel to get a dull finish without a "sanded" look? That's what I would try but never tried so far.

Merry Christmas!

Haf
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