Author Topic: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone  (Read 2883 times)

Offline poplar1

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Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« on: November 17, 2012, 05:26:41 PM »
Here's one I didn't see on Paul F.'s site: It's a 1962 prototype that sold on Ebay on Nov. 11  (item #   321017972621    ).

"C'est pas une restauration, c'est une rénovation."--François Martin.

Offline Jester

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2012, 06:04:04 PM »
I bet we see it on Paul's site now.  I see this one was the prize of one of ebay's "big guns".  I missed it completely.  Thank you, David, for mentioning this one.
Stephen

Offline Dave F

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #2 on: November 17, 2012, 11:34:36 PM »
I was the lucky bidder who won it.  This phone is a truly rare gem: I believe it is the final pre-production prototype design for what ultimately became the 1500 set just about one year later.  I just received it (thankfully, undamaged) yesterday, packed well as I begged the seller.  If you look carefully at the auction photos, you can see that the one-of-a-kind faceplate is installed inside-out, with the ribbed bottom facing outward.  Even though it does not fit correctly in that orientation, it fortunately is not damaged and can easily be repositioned without a problem.  I need some time to examine the phone and clean it up.  Eventually, I'll post some pictures of the unique features.

DF

Offline RotarDad

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2012, 12:50:34 AM »
Very cool phone!   I see it has black plungers - it the case Tenite?  I was wondering about that "6" by itself above the date on the bottom.  Could it be that WE was considering using a 6XX model number for that version before deciding on 1500?
Paul

Offline paul-f

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2012, 12:55:14 PM »
I was wondering about that "6" by itself above the date on the bottom.  Could it be that WE was considering using a 6XX model number for that version before deciding on 1500?

Not likely.  They were already well into the 600s for the rotary Call Directors.

http://www.paul-f.com/we500typ.htm#CallDirectors
Visit: paul-f.com         WE 500  Design_Line

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Offline Jester

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2012, 01:39:44 PM »
I was wondering about that "6" by itself above the date on the bottom.


Maybe it's a tracking number for the set's location, time in service, reliabilty record, etc.  Great find, Dave F-- Congratulations!
« Last Edit: November 18, 2012, 09:51:51 PM by Jester »
Stephen

Offline Dave F

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2012, 02:09:08 PM »
<snip> Great find, Dave F-- Congratulations!
Thank you!

Actually, I'm not quite the "big gun" you imagine, although I do often get outbid by people who really are.  In fact, this phone took a substantial bite out of my budget.  I don't have a huge phone collection -- certainly far smaller than many others on this forum.  However, I try to concentrate my modest resources on a few "great" items, rather than on a higher volume of lesser ones.

DF
« Last Edit: November 19, 2012, 12:26:20 PM by Dave F »

Offline Jester

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2012, 10:02:16 PM »
Forgive my cheeky comment.  I recognized the ebay member code as one I routinely see on the top of--some--high end auctions.  I realize the items you look for are a little more special than what I can move on, so I appreciate your willingness to share those things I wouldn't normally see with all of us.
Stephen

Offline HowardPgh

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2012, 11:11:59 AM »
What would be the earliest commonly available 1500?
I have two beige ones, one with a beige face and one with a black face that you have to remove to put in the number card from behind.
We used to have WATS phone service in the 60s and these were the phones that were used on those lines.-Howard
Howard

Offline Dave F

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #9 on: November 19, 2012, 12:10:51 PM »
What would be the earliest commonly available 1500?
I have two beige ones, one with a beige face and one with a black face that you have to remove to put in the number card from behind.
We used to have WATS phone service in the 60s and these were the phones that were used on those lines.-Howard
1500 sets began showing up in limited numbers in 1963, and today those are somewhat uncommon.  Usually, 1964 is the earliest we see.  Touchtone service was initially available only in sporadic locations, and it took several years before the whole country had it.  Here in Los Angeles, we did not get Touchtone until 1966 and, even then, it was only available in Beverly Hills (of course!) for at least another year.  I had a couple of 1500 sets to play with, but no phone line that could use them (except on my key system with its TT dial intercom)!

The early 1500s all had charcoal-colored faceplates (regardless of the phone's color) that used a metal clip on the backside to hold the designation card.  Not too long after that faceplates were made available in coordinated colors, but still (for a short time) used the clip retainers.  By about 1966, the newer-style faceplates, with the removable clear plastic window over the designation card, were the standard.  Obviously, a small molded piece of plastic costs far less to manufacture than a complex bent metal clip and, in addition, it was no longer necessary to remove the faceplate in order to change the designation strip.

One of the things that makes the F-54665 so interesting is that it was made a very short time before the design of the 1500 was settled.  This indicates that they had already decided on the shape of the housing, but had not yet finalized the design of the TT dial and its associated faceplate.

DF
« Last Edit: November 22, 2012, 03:46:46 PM by Dave F »

Offline Dave F

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2012, 12:16:47 PM »
I was wondering about that "6" by itself above the date on the bottom.  Could it be that WE was considering using a 6XX model number for that version before deciding on 1500?

Not likely.  They were already well into the 600s for the rotary Call Directors.

http://www.paul-f.com/we500typ.htm#CallDirectors
And, of course, Card Dialers!

Offline McHeath

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Re: Western Electric F-54665 10 Button Touch Tone Telephone
« Reply #11 on: November 20, 2012, 12:55:22 AM »
Very sweet phone, I love the early 10 buttons and this is beyond early.  Glad it went to a good home.  Looking forward to seeing the inners.