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and very rarely ever needs repairs, once you fix them." - Dan/Panther

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Reviving My Dormant Hobby

Started by Kellogg Kitt, September 19, 2022, 11:13:36 AM

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Kellogg Kitt

Hello all,

My name is Wade, and I am new to this forum, but not new to this hobby.  I started collecting telephones when I was a teenager in the 1980s.  I accumulated about 60 as a kid and then packed them away when I left home to go to college, and they remained packed away for many years.  I continued buying occasionally over the years, one at a time, but also packed those away.

Then in 2001, I discovered eBay.  My dormant interest was rekindled, as I had right at my fingertips so many phones that I thought I would never be able to find.  I went on a wild buying spree that lasted about 2 years and brought me about 300 telephones.  They were coming in so quickly that I did not have time to decide what to do with them.  I spread them out over the floor of two rooms, eventually completely covering the floor, except a small aisle I had reserved for walking.

By the time both rooms were full, it was not fun anymore.  I felt overwhelmed.  I stopped buying and packed those phones away.  Over the years, they remained in the back of my mind as a "problem" that I would eventually have to deal with – either sell them or clean them up and display them.

Fast forward about twenty years, and I have finally started!  In 2021, I unpacked them and decided which of the 380 phones to keep and which ones to let go.  I have started cleaning and polishing them and putting them on display in my "telephone room".  It has been a long process, but I am enjoying the hobby again, and I love my phones.  It is nice to have them clean and shiny and out where I can see them.

When this project is finished, I will have about 180 on display.  Some of my favorites are my Kellogg and Kellogg-ITT 500s, Stromberg-Carlson 2500s and 1543s, and my Western Electric 1500s.  Maybe I am unusual here, but I lean toward Kellogg, ITT, and Stromberg-Carlson, but not so much Western Electric.  Maybe this is because I grew up in a non-Bell area, so the ITTs and Strombergs are what I remember from my childhood, and I have always been partial to Kellogg and Kellogg-ITT, because I remember those from my grandmother's house.

I understand that you all like pictures, so I will be posting some soon, including my new red mushroom 500 that I got last week.


Welcome to CRPF. Great bunch of knowledgeable guys here.

That all sounds very interesting - looking forward to seeing your collection.

What display have you purchased/made? Is the new telephone room dedicated to phones or will it have a dual purpose? I finished mine not too long ago and made it a dual purpose 'phone den' ( so when I get bored staring at the telly I can stare at phones instead  ;D  )
A collector of  'Monochrome Phones with Sepia Tones'   ...and a Duck!
Vintage Phones - 10% man made, 90% Tribble

Doug Rose

Welcome to the Forum. I can't wait to see the pictures of your phone room....Doug


Quote from: w2538 on September 19, 2022, 11:13:36 AM... I grew up in a non-Bell area, so the ITTs and Strombergs are what I remember from my childhood, and I have always been partial to Kellogg and Kellogg-ITT, because I remember those from my grandmother's house.

I also grew up in non-Bell territory and started collecting mainly Stromberg and Automatic Electric sets. When I got serious about collecting, the bakelite Kellogg sets were quickly added to the wish list.

Over the years, many phones have come and gone and the collection has changed complexion several times. That's one of the things that keeps me interested -- there are so many choices to collect that there's always something new to look for and research.
Visit:         WE  500  Design_Line


Kellogg Kitt

@FABphones - The room is supposed to be the living room, at least that is what whoever built the house thought, lol.  But yes, it is a dual purpose room for me.  I have sofa, love seat, chair, and coffee table, so it is a nice room to sit and visit with people (or better yet, just sit and look at the phones!).

I am using Billy bookcases from Ikea.  I have 6 of them, each with 8 shelves.  Each shelf holds 3 normal sized phones, with a few inches between them.  I have wall phones mounted on the sides, 3 or 4 on each side.  I think I am going to add one more bookcase to relocate about 28 phones from small built-in bookcases in another room.  It would be nice to have them all together in one room.

@paul-f - I have visited your website many times.  Thanks for maintaining that gold mine of information.


Welcome wow cant wait to see picts. Any plans to connect some of the phones up to a PBX or ?

Kellogg Kitt

Quote from: 5415551212 on September 19, 2022, 11:16:05 PMAny plans to connect some of the phones up to a PBX or ?

No. Long ago, I had visions of maybe doing such a thing, but for now I am happy just to get them clean and looking good.



Welcome to the site!  Looking forward to seeing your phones.
"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."
— Arthur C. Clarke

Kellogg Kitt

Thanks for the warm welcomes, everyone.  I have spent quite a bit of time browsing through the old messages, and I see this is a very friendly community.  I am glad I found you!

Greg G.

Oh dear, you mean it only goes dormant?  I thought I was cured! I still have a few favorites I kept, plus miscellaneous parts.
The idea that a four-year degree is the only path to worthwhile knowledge is insane.
- Mike Row


Wade, I know my  natural sensation when I pull out a phone for clean up / check up / repair is to connect it and test it as well. The greatest thing I have ever done for myself and my hobby is to have a dedicated rotary compatible VoIP line  . Now when I pull one out of a becket (yes I store them in buckets) , it goes at one of two test places A for desk phones and B for wall phones.

And by the way this addiction to phones I and some others call it "Phone porn". Not as bad as a booze or drug addiction I suppose, but welcome to the phone porn support group anyway
Phat Phantom's phreaking phone phettish