Author Topic: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store  (Read 5685 times)

Offline TelePlay

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Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« on: March 24, 2015, 09:21:15 PM »
Was driving out of my normal work area today and saw this Antique Store just off the road so stopped for a quick look. Went through about 75% of the store seeing nothing of interest and then I turned a corner, and there they were.

Saw the beige 10 button and my first thought was "Wow, a ten button in real life!" As I picked it up, I noticed there on a shelf next to it was a black 10 button! And next to that was an ivory 12 button. And all of the "0" buttons had the full "operator" around them.

And then the prices! $11, $11 and $10 each. And then the discount, 20% off! So, three phones for $27.07 (including sales tax) makes it about $0.85 a button.

Yeah, they are dirty and the ivory has a crack in the shell front above the dial and the beige faceplate is busted near the number card and some of the cords are problematic and they've had field work done to them and I don't know if they work yet, but the insides are relatively clean. Interesting find, I'd say. So, here's what I got:

Black Phone

Base:  10/65 with 2 mouse holes
Handset:  G1 hardwired
Transmitter:  T1 3/60
Receiver:  U1 6/65
Shell:  65
Network:  425G 10/65
Ringer:  III 65
Dial:  10 button 1/67


Beige Phone

Base:  8/66 with 2 mouse holes
Handset:  G3 modular
Transmitter:  T1 6/71
Receiver:  U1 4/61
Shell:  66
Network:  425G 7/66
Ringer:  II 66
Dial:  10 button 6/66


Ivory Phone

Base:  8/69 modular punched
Handset:  G3 modular
Transmitter:  (stuck tight)
Receiver:  U3 12/76
Shell:  73
Network:  425K 8/69
Ringer:  III 69
Dial:  12 button 10/68

I've been looking for a Rockford phone and I think I have one here if I swap out the black 10 button dial with the '68 ivory 12 button and finding a dark grey 12 hole plate for it. Yes, it is a G1 handset with plastic caps so not quite an early 70s Rockford phone. But it would look like one.

Probably clean up and sell the Ivory and Beige, unless someone can convince me the mid-60s black 10 button is rare and should be left as it.

I'm open to comments and suggestions.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2015, 10:02:24 PM by TelePlay »

Offline paul-f

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2015, 09:41:21 PM »
Great find, John.
 
IMHO, any 1500-series set is unusual enough that it should be preserved.  It's the iconic representation of the first Bell System production Touch Tone design.  There were hundreds of millions more 2500-series sets made.
 
However, they're your phones now and you should enjoy them as you see fit.
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Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2015, 09:57:31 PM »
I agree with Paul; the black 1500 should be left alone.

Mark sold a black 1500 from his Craigslist haul from '64 recently for $200! I tried relentlessly to buy it off him for $60 before he decided to sell it in an auction. I have seen many hardwired black 2500s go for only $20 or $30, so they're at least somewhat easy to find, while black 1500s are pretty difficult!

Christian Petterson

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Offline compubit

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2015, 11:39:22 PM »
1500s are my favorite right now - people look at the and know something's "off" but usually can't figure out why until I show them the 12-button pad...

I have 5 (plus a 1500 black base on the way - have plenty of black handsets to finish off the phone).

Also, just looking at that Ivory - it appears to have a grey faceplate - and may be a yellowed white.  I have a number of them going through the chemical bleaching process as the weather permits right now.  (My white 1500 was one of those cases - appeared ivory in the pictures, but with a grey faceplate - took a chance and it was white!

Jim
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Favorite Phone: Western Electric Trimline - it just feels right holding it up to my face!

Offline Kenton K

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #4 on: March 25, 2015, 12:16:20 AM »
Nice job!

Offline Sargeguy

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #5 on: March 25, 2015, 07:30:33 PM »
I think you got hosed on the 2500!
Greg Sargeant
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Offline TelePlay

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #6 on: March 25, 2015, 11:20:40 PM »
I think you got hosed on the 2500!

Yes, I did if you look at the phone as configured. But I bought that 2500 for $8.46 including sales tax for the 12 button dial with the full word "operator" over the "0" to make a Rockford phone out of the black 1500. I've seen 12 button pads sell for more than that on eBay. I thought that was a deal, of sorts.

But, now I've changed my mind on that. I'm Going to keep the black 1500 as is. As such, I still have that 12 button to swap out an "oper" pad some day.

Here are more pictures of the black 1500 that cost me $9.30 total.

And I have one question about the phone that hopefully someone can answer. It has a G1 bakelite handset with plastic caps. Was that standard for a 1500 in the mid-60s?



« Last Edit: March 25, 2015, 11:22:56 PM by TelePlay »

Offline WEBellSystemChristian

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2015, 12:08:55 AM »
A bakelite G1 in 1965 would have been correct for that phone.

I believe it was 1966 that a full changeover took place for black phones in the name of Standardization. All 500s had handsets that were now made of ABS, and dials were #9s with clear fingerwheels. Starting in 1966, there were no physical differences between black and colored phones (other than color, of course).
Christian Petterson

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Offline jsowers

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2015, 12:36:40 AM »
John, I think you made the right decision on the black 1500. We can all keep a lookout for a real Rockford phone for you and send you a PM when we spot one. Better a Rockford than a Frankenford.  ;)  I think your black 1500 is a good candidate for Find of the Month too.
 
500 and 554 sets still came with Bakelite G1 handsets around that time, so I suppose 1500s did too, but I don't think black Princesses did. Is there a date inside the handset anywhere? That should show if it's original to 1965.
Jonathan

Offline TelePlay

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2015, 07:51:14 AM »
Is there a date inside the handset anywhere? That should show if it's original to 1965.

On the transmitter end, on the ring at about 1 or 2 o'clock (looking at the handset with the receiver end up), there is a small number 937.

Under the receiver element, in the center of the handset, is a 61 and below that near the tunnel is a 92, both large and embossed.

Did I miss any numbers?

I can take photos tonight after work.

Offline TelePlay

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2015, 10:25:02 PM »
Here are the numbers, 937 on the transmitter outer ring and 61? on the receiver inside center. Does this help?

Did I miss something? I haven't followed 1500s so this is new to me. Seems this phone was built within the first two years of producing the 1500.

Thanks for any help.

Offline poplar1

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2015, 11:21:14 PM »
I believe that 61 with  2 lines= February, 1961
"C'est pas une restauration, c'est une rénovation."--François Martin.

Offline poplar1

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2015, 11:34:47 PM »
Dial has vermilion date stamps of 12-67 and 1-68, in addition to the original 2(?)-67 manufacture date. Bill says that two dates that close together (a month apart) probably indicates that the dial  wasn't properly serviced the first time it went back to the shop. In any case, when phones were remanufactured, a mixture of dates often resulted. Another WE retiree told me they used whatever was available at the time of reassembly.
"C'est pas une restauration, c'est une rénovation."--François Martin.

Offline TelePlay

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #13 on: March 26, 2015, 11:41:54 PM »
Interesting.

Here is the dial straight on. I tried to load this with the others a few days ago but got the security issue on that one photo and didn't have time to reprocess it so didn't post it.

So, is it a '65 phone with a replacement dial?


Offline poplar1

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Re: Found Two 1500s and One 2500 WE's in an Antique Store
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2015, 12:36:22 AM »
G1 handle (2-61), receiver (3-60), and dial (2-67, R12-67, R1-68) have all been replaced at some point. And yet, there is only the one 10-65 date on the base plate.

Long mounting cord was typically installed at the customer's location. Can you check the dates on the  cord restraints? Sometimes they are a good indicator of last time phone was rebuilt.
"C'est pas une restauration, c'est une rénovation."--François Martin.