Author Topic: how to refurbish/clean the faded color on western electric phones? Please help  (Read 6778 times)

Offline Bamagirl88

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Good Morning to all,
Is anyone on this Friday Morning?  Just wondering if anyone saw my picture of my phone I posted & wanted to see what ya'll thought was the best method to use?
Just call me Sherry from Alabama Roll Tide Roll!

Online HarrySmith

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Hi Sherry,
That is not a WE (Western Electric) phone, that is an AE (Automatic Electric). It looks like a good candidate for Peroxide or Retobrite. Some info here:
Do you have the ability to disassemble the phone?
Harry Smith
ATCA 4434

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

Offline AE_Collector

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I think that the bottom line is there is no quick and easy way to remove discoloration from plastic phones. I always love the ebay listings showing a faded discolored phone and the description states that it "just needs a good cleaning" as if to imply that it will look like new if you invest 10 or minutes to scrub it down.

The only way used to be sanding and it still is likely the only way in a lot of cases. Sanding probably is a 20 hour or more investment in the phone so you aren't going to do that to try to sell if for $50 on ebaY.

The only phones that are worth this sort of investment of time are rare colors and otherwise very collectible phones, not the run of the mill colored phones.

There have been some successes with retrobright and other bleaching processes but they work best with the lighter colors and you still invest quite a few hours in disassembly, bleaching and reassembly.

There is enough info on the forum on these subjects to keep you reading for hours but I don't think anyone can give you a guaranteed best method to try and unlike some of the ebaY listings suggest, it won't be ready to go in 15 minutes.

Just my opinion on the topic.

« Last Edit: February 10, 2012, 09:34:04 PM by AE_collector »

Offline Dennis Markham

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I think that the bottom line is there is no quick and easy way to remove discoloration from plastic phones.........

Well said, Terry.


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A good outline of the alternatives and considerations in restoring colored plastic phones.