Author Topic: Help on a 50AL  (Read 1674 times)

Offline benhutcherson

  • **
  • Posts: 706
Help on a 50AL
« on: October 19, 2008, 04:47:49 PM »
Hello Folks,
I was at a local antique mall today, and ran across a 50AL candlestick for sale for a decent price. I didn't get it, primarily because I didn't feel like I could afford it, but also because it had some glaring issues that made me doubt its authenticity.

Here's what I noticed

1. The dial was a fairly late Western Electric model, I believe a #5 with a plastic cam(I could faintly hear it clicking when I wound it). I didn't think that 50ALs ever came with a #5.

2. The set had a Bulldog transmitter. There was nothing stamped on the back of the transmitter cup.

3. The only marking was 50AL on the perch.

4. The base was covered in leather, not in felt.

5. The receiver looked and felt like it was made of hard rubber. It was also completely hollow. There was a modern receiver loosely flopping around inside of it. There were no markings on the transmitter shell.


I'd appreciate any thoughts as to whether or not it's original. If it is, it definitely seems worth the price they were asking($60), and I'll grab it if it's still available in the next week or two.

Thanks,
Ben
« Last Edit: October 19, 2008, 04:52:17 PM by benhutcherson »

Offline bingster

  • Contest Director
  • **
  • Posts: 2945
    • OTRplus Classic Radio
Re: Help on a 50AL
« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2008, 05:20:08 PM »
The 50AL is from the 1920s, so it was produced way before the #5 dial was introduced.  It would originally have had a #2 dial.  Likewise, the bulldog transmitter is a much later piece of equipment.  But the appearance of those items doesn't necessarily mean the phone is unoriginal.  Both these things may very well have been added later by repairmen, or as part of the refurbishment process by Western Electric.

I don't know much about the other items.  I know 202s are found with either a leather or a felted wool base cover, but I don't know what was done on the deskstands.  My 50AL has a felt covered base, for what it's worth. And the receiver sounds odd.  It could be a repro to replace a missing one, and WE receivers are usually marked, as far as I know. 

Still, if I were you, I'd definitely grab it at that price.


= DARRIN =



Offline Dan/Panther

  • Global Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 5566
  • Kaw-Liga, I will NEVER forget you. 8/4/98--9/20/10
Re: Help on a 50AL
« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2008, 06:02:19 PM »
If you like the phone, and it's complete, the price is fair. Grab it until a better one comes along.
D/P

The More People I meet, The More I Love, and MISS My Dog.  Dan Robinson

Offline benhutcherson

  • **
  • Posts: 706
Re: Help on a 50AL
« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2008, 06:04:12 PM »
Bingster,
Thanks for the response. I'm definitely leaning toward getting it.

Although the receiver shell wasn't marked, it definitely had the same "feel" as the originals I've handled.

It also was a completely hollow shell, so that it could easily take a proper receiver element and diaphragm-the cap even had the single big hole in the middle that you would expect from this type of receiver.

One of the other red flags for me was that it just didn't feel right. It wasn't nearly as heavy as my 151AL. Of course, though, the lack of a proper receiver would throw of the weight a fair amount, so perhaps that's what I was noticing.

Anyway, thanks again. The more I think about it, the more I think that it was probably a bargain, even for a reproduction, at that price.

Offline BDM

  • 313-TUxedo 6-4281
  • **
  • Posts: 1316
Re: Help on a 50AL
« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2008, 06:19:49 PM »
If you're unfamiliar with candlesticks, then you should review this page before any purchase. As as ask questions, no matter how silly they may sound. Better than getting burnt.
http://www.oldphoneman.com/Fakes.htm

--Brian--

St Clair Shores, MI

Offline Dennis Markham

  • VintageRotaryPhones.com
  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 5621
    • VintageRotaryPhones.com
Re: Help on a 50AL
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2008, 09:16:56 PM »
I have no knowledge on the desk stand phones.  Someone did give me a model 317 wooden wall phone.  The transmitter cup has a star in the center of the cup.  I was told this is an indication that it is original Western Electric.  Is that true and would that apply to transmitter cups on the desk stands too?

Offline BDM

  • 313-TUxedo 6-4281
  • **
  • Posts: 1316
Re: Help on a 50AL
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2008, 10:04:30 PM »
I have no knowledge on the desk stand phones.  Someone did give me a model 317 wooden wall phone.  The transmitter cup has a star in the center of the cup.  I was told this is an indication that it is original Western Electric.  Is that true and would that apply to transmitter cups on the desk stands too?

In answer to your question, yes. But, some very impressive "fakes" have shown up and sold as originals. You can usually tell by the feel.

--Brian--

St Clair Shores, MI