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Why ITT and WE parts are incompatable.

Started by Babybearjs, March 04, 2020, 09:53:06 PM

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well.... I went ahead and invested in some key phone sets, spent a good $150.00 for the lot... a 501A KTS and 7 telephones, 6 of which are 2564 sets. upon cleaning the sets, the faceplates shattered and I quickly discovered how cheap the brand was.... I got some used plates from another collector thing they would work, and they do, barely..... ITT used inferior platics, causing faceplates to break and shatter.... WE made their plates thicker making them pretty much only compatable with their own sets. yes, they do fit on the ITT chassis, but barely... having to adjust the retaining clip to keep them in place. its no wonder why ATT changed the faceplate design on the last run of sets in the late 80's and 90's. eliminating the spring clip all together and making the flaceplates pretty much non-removable. My green 2564 is a good example of that... Enclosed are some pictures of what I'm talking about. remanufactured and salvaged sets are so hard to get parts for now.... I wrote Cortelco to see if they still made parts, they didn't. so.... we are left to putting parts back together as best we can.... now I see why so many of us have parts we can't get rid of and wind up throwing phones away. incompatable parts or no parts available are a big problem.    the tan faceplate has a broken clip retianer area, a common issue and the blue face plates are from WE sets on ITT frames... now I see why this whole series was discontinued.... bad designing!


All good things must come to an end, The same with the wild wood weed...
So many things have gone far longer than originally planned for.
And so for us collectors, we scrape, and scavenge what we can,
till it becomes more hassle than it is worth to continue. :-\
It is a plastic world we live in, and it is rotting quickly.
Makes me wonder, what sorts of hobbies will be left for our Grand babies???


John, in response to your post, I've never had most ITT parts ever shatter, or break easy. in my many years of collecting, I have figured out that those face plates do fit with either set Western or ITT with no fitment issues.
Also anything that sits in sunlight the UV light breaks down plastics and they do become brittle.
So I'm thinking even though your face plates may not look faded they very well could have been in sunlight, or higher heat environments than most do.

And RB is also correct, these telephones have been around much longer than really planned. So everything with age deteriorates.
But on that same note, I found that the 830 and 2830 series desk and wall sets from ITT the face plates were easily broken if mis handled or handled roughly.
I purchased a truck load of these sets, new and used over the years, and those were the only ones I have found to be easily broken.



yup! I agree with you both... the entire system dates back to the 1980's.... the phones, well used and in an industrial setting.... warehouse, office space, etc. flourescent lighting and natural sun... but what I can't figure out is why JUST the Brown Faceplates shattered.... I have other ITT sets and its just been the brown that has failed... all the other colored faceplates are holding up well.... so it must be the plastic itself... oh well, time to move on..... working on re-adding my 208KTU array... having to make adjustments to my system.... Uhg!


Well I worked on brown housings once to notch for modular handset jacks, a lot of those housings cracked or broke.
So it may have just been the plastic that had the brown pigment in them. Because in the same batch, we're beige, I had no problem with the beige. I just remembered that when you said just the brown.. So it must have been to do with the brown plastic.

Hill Haven Telephone Company

If you guys can scan me in the faceplates that are prone to breaking,  I can recreate them as a 3d printable object.