Telephone Switching > Magneto & Manual (Cord Boards etc)

Northern Electric 1240

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I got a gift from my cousin yesterday. A northern Electric 1240, from what I can tell from the little info I could find. (Thanks Dave at the PEI phone museum).

I want to get this old girl working, with just a couple of magneto phones and an external line. I'm looking for any kind of manual I can find as a big part of the wiring harness is gone.

Luckily I only want a few lines to work for demonstration purposes.

It's exciting, and will make the centrepeice to my collection. I'm running an asterisk box with some FXO cards that work a variety of old 500, 2500 and an AE50 around the house as an intercom. With SIP trunking, I can direct dial out to actual numbers. but I digress.

Here is a url of pictures.

Well, I borrowed a magneto set and thanks to Dave, again, used some of the documentation I found to get a drop to fall when I crank the crank. A video of drop #1 dropping.

I keep seeing switch boards.....I saw what appeared to be a good buy on EBAY....It's making me want one!


--- Quote from: Pourme on September 05, 2016, 07:57:15 PM ---I keep seeing switch boards.....I saw what appeared to be a good buy on EBAY....It's making me want one!

--- End quote ---

Do it.

If anyone needs a copy of the NE 1240 board manual, you can download its three files from the Museum Facebook page files area:




These contain both basic technical drawings, and also operating instructions.

Join the Group at: to download these.

I have a few diagrams for the 1240 at:

You will need to provide 3-5 volts DC for both the board and each connected magneto set. I find old Motorola switching cell phone supplies work well for the purpose. Strip off the old connector, tie the white sensing lead and red line together and use that for positive, and black for negative.

While Cell chargers do create some ripple, it is above human hearing range, and not at 60 hertz like conventional chargers, where you will hear the ripple as an unpleasant buzz.

Lines from the tip and ring of each phone go to either the connection board if still left in, or directly to each drop.

Dave (VY2AC)


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