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

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New member in WI

Started by PaddyWhack, May 26, 2016, 08:02:11 PM

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So I took the plunge and joined this forum...(perhaps my interest in old phones is getting out of hand?) Anyway, I'm just a dabbler who picked up a WE 302 to restore, but things (as usual) haven't gone as planned with fixing it up. Being in my 20s, I also have no background knowledge of rotary phones, though I've learned a lot already. But I figure there's enough knowledge on this forum to figure out what's wrong with it. I look forward to diving into this.




A good place to start would be some pics of your set, so we can begin to understand the full force of your plunge...   hoping that nothing got broken.



Welcome paddyWhack, you will discover we like pictures. 1st it is very helpful in diagnosing problems. 2nd we like to look at phones:)


Welcome from one millennial Wisconsinite to another! ;)

It sounds like you have a nice start already, congrats! Don't forget that the 'phone collecting bug' will never die... :o
Christian Petterson

"Whether you think you can or think you can't, you're right" -Henry Ford


Welcome! The 3XX series of Western Electric phones is a great area to start collecting. Must models of the black 3XXs are very affordable and there are so many different models and even minor differences between the same models. Parts are usually available.
Tom Vaughn
La Porte, Indiana
ATCA Past President
ATCA #765
C*NET 1+ 821-9905


Welcome!  We will try to help you as much as we can. (End that might be pretty much :=)  )
I guess the most common problem we have, when we try to help each other is to know what level the skills of the other part has, so pleas bear over with answers on totally wrong level, and just tell if we start wit to advanced, or simple levels in our answers.

It may be of interest to know what kind of tools you have suitable for e.g. measuring. A cheap multimeter will usually be nice to have. Old analogue meters may often be easier to use, as long as the still work the are good enough.  If you do not have, a battery and a test lamp may often solve most our needs.  A PC with sound-card and freeware as visual analyzer may even do the job, and that's something everybody use to have.  (and maybe more natural to use for a young person rather than an older)

Again Welcome!



Quote from: PaddyWhack on May 26, 2016, 08:02:11 PM

...I'm just a dabbler who picked up a WE 302 to restore, but things (as usual) haven't gone as planned with fixing it up. Being in my 20s, I also have no background knowledge of rotary phones, ...

Welcome to the group.

Fortunately repairing phones isn't like rocket science or brain surgery. although many of us have rebuilt several 302s, many also only have a year or two head start on you. Coming into this with no background hasn't stopped us.

I have to ask about your choice of user name. Of course the first thing that came to mind was the children's song, but an internet search produced several other, and quite different, uses of the term. It's quite versatile. I'll be using it more often in the future!

Paddywhack (also spelt Paddywack) or Nuchal ligament (Latin: Ligamentum nuchae), is a strong elastic ligament in the midline of the neck of sheep or cattle which relieves the animal of the weight of its head. It is pale yellow in colour.

Paddywhack is dried bits of animal that is given to dogs as a treat.  It looks like this and you can get it from a good butcher.  Dogs love it.  (photo below)

paddywhack   (v.) The act of being non-fatally hit by a drunk driver on St. Patrick's Day.   Jaywalking in front of the Blarney Stone Pub, I was paddywhacked by an oncoming car.

   paddywhack     /ˈpædɪˌwæk/          noun (informal)  1.  (Brit) another word for paddy2                        2.  a spanking or smack                    Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition

...and there are several that aren't suitable for a "family forum."

Good name choice!
Visit:         WE  500  Design_Line



Hey Everyone, thanks for the welcome (and especially for the run-down on all the possible meanings of my moniker!) So here's some info on the phone and what I've done, if the computer cooperates photos may come too.

It's an antique store find. The cords for the line and handset were frayed to the point of being dangerous, and I naively thought "meh, can't be that hard to replace" and bought it. It's metal, and came with straight brown cloth cords. It's not "pretty": it's got paint spatter and places where the original paint came off. On the inside it's marked "H-1" and all the dated innards of the phone are marked "4/41." The dial is the weird part. It's not a Western (or Northern) Electric dial, I'm pretty sure it's Automatic Electric. Why that is on this phone is beyond me, maybe you folks will have ideas.

I replaced the two cords with reproductions from Old Phone Works, tried to sort out online wiring diagrams and figure out the right connections, but it doesn't work. Period. I've got a relative with a working 302 and I opened it up to reference a working was wired exactly like I had mine. So I'm stumped.

Regarding tools and such, I don't have any testers or anything. Might have people I could borrow some from though.



Since this topic started as a new member introduction but ended up with 3 of the 4 topic pages being forum members helping PaddyWhack get his first phone, a NE 302, into working order, this topic was split at this point leaving the introduction and all of the welcome posts here (above) and moving all of the troubleshooting posts into a new topic titled "Need help getting my NE 302 to work" which now resides in "Telephone Troubleshooting and Repair" at: