Author Topic: Am I missing something on these auctions?  (Read 1554 times)

Offline benhutcherson

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Am I missing something on these auctions?
« on: February 08, 2009, 10:36:13 PM »
I was cleaning out my watched folder earlier, which I often use to earmark telephones that could be interesting.

Anyway, I noticed this 500 set which seems to me to be nothing spectacular

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&item=160311420308

It's a '56 base date, with a collection of other dated parts, including a 7-hole cap. Again, a decent phone for a collection, but nothing earth-shattering, and not something for which I would ever pay over $15 or $20 shipped. Thus, I was quite shocked to see that it had brought $27. This is without the additional $11+ in shipping one would have to be.

Is there something special about this one that I'm missing?

Also, this similar(but newer) '62 phone from the same seller brought $15-again, much more than I would pay(probably $10-15, shipping included, max).

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&item=390025914143

Offline Dennis Markham

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Re: Am I missing something on these auctions?
« Reply #1 on: February 08, 2009, 10:50:32 PM »
I don't see anything unusual about it, just another black 500 (the first one).  At least this one had leather feet.  It was just in the right place at the right time I guess.

Offline Perry

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Re: Am I missing something on these auctions?
« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2009, 10:58:16 PM »
How about this one, which looks to me like a standard 102 (or B mount), crudely painted green?
http://tinyurl.com/green-102
Am I missing something?

It reminds me of Sargeguy's 202:
http://www.classicrotaryphones.com/forum/index.php?topic=597.0


HobieSport

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Re: Am I missing something on these auctions?
« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2009, 11:03:09 PM »
I don't know, Perry; that army green painted 102 may clean up nice and be worth quite a bit once resurrected...

Offline Perry

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Re: Am I missing something on these auctions?
« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2009, 11:08:55 PM »
I guess I was thinking that nice clean 102s seem to sell for $300-$350 on eBay, and this one will need a lot of work, although it does have the seamless handset and bullet transmitter (but no subset). The higher bids seem to indicate that this is something rare, but the army phones I have seen were standard black. Why paint them olive drab when they are not for field use, anyway?

Offline Dennis Markham

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Re: Am I missing something on these auctions?
« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2009, 11:17:20 PM »
That looks like an old dial too...a #2HB.  The dial plate looks like it is a celluloid.  I don't know if about the Army green paint job...it appears to be factory.  And is getting the bids indicating collectors want it.  I'll check with a buddy of mine that collects the colored B1's and see what he reports about this phone.

Offline benhutcherson

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Re: Am I missing something on these auctions?
« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2009, 11:28:43 PM »
Whoever painted that B1(whether the factory or someone else) did a really thorough job. Notice that even the "bullet" of the transmitter is painted, as is the fingerstop.

If it had been a factory job, I would expect that either the bullet would be left unpainted, or if painted, the whole thing would be. This one appears to only have the part which can be reached through the spit cup painted. I would also think that the back of the hook switch would be painted, and that the fingerstop wouldn't be.

Granted, though, I know very little about telephones this old, but the paint job looks too halfway done to me for it to have been a factory paint job.


Offline Perry

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Re: Am I missing something on these auctions?
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2009, 11:31:20 PM »
Not that I have any particular expertise in 102s (or Army phones), but I was thinking if it was a factory paint job, they would have painted it before assembly, and only on the "black" (normally) parts. Note the paint on the finger stop, and even some overspray on the dial plate (next to the ABC). Also, the back of the fingerwheel looks black to me. Wouldn't the Army have stamped the phone if they owned it, too? I was just curious whether it was valuable despite the paint, or because of the paint. I guess a nice celluloid dial plate is a rarity, though?

Offline bingster

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Re: Am I missing something on these auctions?
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2009, 11:41:42 PM »
The color looks like the correct gray-green/moss green to me, and it's clearly got a lot of age on it, but I'd be really concerned about the fingerstop being painted.  I've seen original painted B and D mounts, but I've never seen one with a "matching" fingerstop.  The fact that it was painted in one piece is also very suspicious.

The "army" story doesn't hold water.  Lots of sellers assume that about green phones just because of the color.  We've all seen military phones on ebay, and they're just not painted in colors to coordinate with the branch of service. 
= DARRIN =



Offline Dennis Markham

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Re: Am I missing something on these auctions?
« Reply #9 on: February 09, 2009, 01:11:00 PM »
I spoke with my friend and long time collector about this green phone.  He concurs with Bingster that it is a back yard paint job, pointing out in addition to other things, the painted finger stop.  He said that W.E. did use a factory green but the finger wheel would have been stainless steel and the finger stop would not have been painted.  Further, the handset that received the paint job would have had seamless caps and would be brown Bakelite, not black.  He did say there was an exception of made after 1940 (brown-vs-black).  So he believes the bidders (zero feedback) are over paying for this phone.

With regard to Army green, he also believes W.E. did not specifically paint phones green for the Army.  They would run some red phones for critical offices that demanded a "hot line".  There were also some painted candle stick phones for places like hospitals, but as a general rule phones used by the military were not necessarily painted green.  Often they do have a number designation on the bottom that begins with GA.