"The phone is a remarkably complex, simple device,
and very rarely ever needs repairs, once you fix them." - Dan/Panther

Main Menu

Beautiful AE34 - smashed in Shipping :(

Started by Dave F, October 22, 2010, 11:05:25 PM

Previous topic - Next topic


Some instructions on how to take the handset apart in the first few pictures of this album:


Dave F

Quote from: phone-sweep on October 24, 2010, 07:09:07 PM
Hello, all - my first post here.

Very interesting phone you have here - it is tragic how some ebayers "pack".  Can't tell you how many times this has happened to me (or the other dealie where imperfections - cracks, chips, etc. - are not shown or conveniently left out of the listing pictures).

Would love to see a pic or two of the grab area in back.....

Something different about your ringer..  I believe the bells should be upside down, not "cup up".  The ringer in 34's was unusual in that it was kind of at a 45ยบ.  Like this:

Like Terry suggested, use a strap wrench on the handset caps - preferrably rubber.  "Grab" the bands.... these are the parts that unscrew.  In the past, on tough ones,  I've had to put the handle in a vise (with blocks of wood in the jaws) so I could get a good grip.  If it still didn't want to budge, I've used a bit of penetrating oil in the crack between handle and band.  Let it soak in for a bit and try again.   Unfortunately, sometimes the spitcup is "welded" to the band and you end up breaking a small centering tab on the spitcup.  Not a major deal as the tab is internal and not visible and the spitcup can always be manually centered before tightening the next time.

I have some ideas for restoring your bakelite if you're interested but I'm a bit pressed for time at the moment.  Do you have all the little vent slots bars?   
I'll have to dig it out again and take some pictures of the handle area.  Not knowing much about early AE sets, I had no idea that this variation was particularly uncommon.  It makes a restoration attempt more tempting.  I may or may not have the broken pieces of the vent slots, I just don't know.  For the moment, let's assume that those pieces are gone.  Any ideas or tips for restoring Bakelite would be welcome.  But, as I mentioned earlier, this project would have to be added to a pretty long list of other things that need to be worked on first.
Quote from: Kidphone on October 24, 2010, 01:15:36 PM is a darn shame to see a beautiful phone end up like this. I am curious, you received this, and Ivory 305 and what else? This looked like one hell of an auction. I do agree, have Ray make you a clear Cover and you will be thrilled. Just a thought....Doug

The lot consisted of the ivory 305, AE34, two AE40s, SC1243, and a red 702BM Princess phone -- all in one big claustrophobic box.  I still thank my lucky stars that the 305 was unhurt.



That can almost certainly be saved. 

Whenever you receive phones that have been shipped, open the package carefully on a table where you will be able to clearly see anything that falls out of the packing material.  Inspect the phone closely for chips and other damage.  IF you see chips, then look through the packing material: the chipped pieces of plastic should be in there. 

In the present example, the ribs between the louvers on the side of the case may have gotten broken off this way and ended up loose in the packing. 

I've had this happen to me a few times.  One was a GPO 232 of the type mounted to its ringer box as a combined set.  The other was an Australia PMG 2+10 intercom in gray bakelite, otherwise identical to a GPO 2+10.  In each case there was serious breakage.  However I salvaged the broken bits of bakelite from the packaging and was able to use them in restoring the phone. 

The GPO 232 came out looking almost perfect.  The PMG 2+10 repair is detectable in the right lighting but otherwise pretty difficult to discern. 

Bakelite can be repaired using cyanoacrylate glues ("Krazy Glue").   First you have to very carefully clean off any dirt on the surfaces around the area to be repaired (a soft toothbrush and water with a little dish soap does wonders).  Then you have to be able and ready to hold the repair together manually while the glue sets.  Broken bakelite is very interesting in that when reassembled properly, the pieces fit together perfectly and the break becomes almost invisible, like a hairline crack that hasn't separated.  Now after you've glued the broken parts back together, use additional Krazy Glue along the seams to fill in the surfaces of what look like hairline cracks at the repair locations.   This needs to be done in a series of applications of small amounts so it does not run across the surface.  And let it dry and harden completely between applications: basically leave it overnight between applications (even though these glues are supposed to be instant-setting: in this case they will not be). 

Having done so, sand it down to be flush with the surface of the good plastic, using only very fine sandpapers.  Then buff it with a coarse and fine buffing compound, while buffing the rest of the housing.  You'd be surprised at how the repair just disappears, especially on black phones. 

If you get a damaged phone and unpack it carefully, and the broken bits are not in the packaging, then chances are the damage occurred prior to shipping, in which case ask for a full refund if you don't feel like  trying to fabricate material to fit into places that were broken out. 

Dave F

Thanks for your message of encouragement.  I have all the major pieces saved, but not every small fragment.  (If this ever happens again, I'll take better care to recover every tiny remnant.)  Anyway, trying to put this one back together again will be an interesting project for some future time.  Apparently, this particular variation of AE34 is quite rare, so it would probably be worth a try.  

Thanks again, Dave F.



I knew exactly which thread you were pointing at when you referenced this discussion in Doug Rose's recent AE34 thread:

This still makes me want to cry as I would love to have a 34 with the handhold.



What a shame. Sellers need to learn to ship, and shippers need to be more careful.