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Telephone Curiosities

©2002-12 paulf.  All rights reserved.
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AE Ship phone
Automatic Electric Type D - Ship Phone / Intercom -- Based on AE40 components plus an amplifier for hands-free operation.  Lines are marked for ship's departments: engine, radio, etc.  Nice anchor motif on the brass speaker covers. Typically used on large vessels, such as battleships and aircraft carriers.  Ships phone functions were handled through a Strowger step switch.  Intercom lines were directly wired point-to-point.

The labels on the knobs below the line buttons are (from left): 
 1. SH.Serv / Handset / I.C. 
 2. Press to talk (with downward arrow)Reproducer Only 
 3. On, Power,Off 
 4. Vol. Control (from 5 to low). 

(Photo courtesy of Jane Cassels)

Rauland Amplicall Base Rauland Amplicall Intercom -- OK Landlubbers, here's one for you!  The case is made of gorgeous brown swirled bakelite, and contains a tube amplifier and speaker.  The handset is a wonderful Kellogg brown model. 

Front panel controls include push-to-talk bar, on/off/volume, pilot lamp and 6 station selector swithces. 

This model was featured (usually in back view) on Perry Mason's desk in the early TV episodes.  It was hooked to the PBX so the operator would make the connections. 

 See Additional Details

NCR Stamping Phone
NCR Stamping Phone

Part of the NCR Charge Phone Credit System, Stamping Phones were used by the salesperson to contact the credit department for credit authorizations.  They were distributed throughout a retail store in various departments, and were used in the selling departments by the clerks or wrappers in getting a printed authorization on the sales-slip and a perforated authorization in the address labels.

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WE D1 with a #2 Dial ??
What's this??  A D1 mounting with a #2 dial?

If you ever see one of these, be suspicious!

Click here to learn more.
Bear Phone
Teddy Bear Speakerphone -- TeleConcepts. Buttons are on the bear's tummy. About 15" tall. 

When a signal is received, the bear's mouth and eyes move. The previous owner said her son thought the bear was Grandma, because it spoke with her voice every Sunday afternoon. 

Technology run rampant.

Pillow Talk - Leather phone
Pillow Talk -- Leather Telephone

The handset can sit across the main pillow just above the dial.  However, it's not heavy enough to operate a line switch.  There's a toggle switch above the dial to go on and off hook and a small red light to indicate when the phone is active.
AE890 Rotary/Touchtone Phone Can't decide whether to use rotary or touchtone service? Need both?

Automatic Electric 890 -- With both Rotary and Touchtone capability! 

Probably sold for only a few years when most exchanges were still rotary, but the new computer services required touchtone access. 

Click for related AE models

Soft Touch installed on WE500 Can't decide whether to use rotary or touchtone service? Need both?

Plan B:  Add a Soft Touch Tone Dialer to your rotary phone.  It replaces the transmitter and cap. 

Click for Detail

AE Western Union Voice/Data phone ad
Was this phone ever made?

Ever since I saw an AE ad with this artist's rendering of a phone that looks suspiciously like the AE 880 and 890 case (see above), I wondered if it was ever made.

It was!

Click here to see it.
Nyematic Controller
NYEMATIC Dictation system controller. 

G-type handset has buttons on front and back and a control switch on top.  Quite a feat to get all those switches and wires in a small space.

Telequest Phone
TeleQuest SofTel Plus -- as seen in the Star Trek the Next Generation TV series episode, "First Contact".   A white one was on the wall in the hospital, and a black one was on the leader's desk. 

SofTel Plus, Model 433-SF, design copyright 1986. Desk or wall mountable, tone/pulse, hold, memory, LND, flash, cushioned handgrip and receiver. 
Seen in black, white, red and blue.  Also 2-line models.

See a red one here.

(Important note:  Before copying any text from this site into your ebay auction, please check out the terms of the eBay Verified Rights Owner (VeRO) Program, and the copyright page on this site.)

Receiver with spike
Don't sit on this receiver!

Another flea market find!  This is a nice vintage Kellogg receiver that has been modified to test for vibrations.

It looks like a large spike from the hardware store was drilled and inserted so that it sticks up through the hole on the cap, to be used as a probe.  It's probably not as sensitive as an instrument that has a more direct linkage with the diaphragm, but appears to work.

It almost made it to the "Why did they do that!" page. However, it appears that the work was carefully done so that the original parts were not harmed.  The spike can be removed and the receiver used again.
WE 12E Terminal Block Western Electric 12-E Connection Block -- A wonderful example of thorough packaging.  The 6 terminal block and cover are first wrapped in brown paper, then inserted in a foil lined hermetically sealed bag, then boxed.  Keeps the spare parts as good as new for generations.  Anchor logo on the label suggests a Navy order -- your tax dollars at work.  Label on bag and box reads: 

ORDER NO.18582-PH-51-14 
CP 10/51 

AE Diaphragm Automatic Electric Receiver Diaphragm -- Here's another packaging example... a simple 2 1/8" diaphragm packed with a sack of dehydrating agent in corrugated cardboard in a foil lined hermetically sealed bag.  Packed 32 to a carton.  Wouldn't want your diaphragm stock getting bent or rusty!  Notice the similarity of labeling: 

1 ea. Diaphragm: Receiver 
Stock No. 4B721-3/5 
Part No. Auto Elec. #D-38194 
Item No. 36 
Order No. 21734-PH-45-26 
VPP 6/45 

Cord Weights
Cord Weights -- used under manual switchboards to retract cords, returning the jacks to the rest position. Cords were threaded around the pulley, which is just above the weight. Marked 119 on one side and P287992 on the other side. 4 3/8" high.

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©2002-12 paulf.  All rights reserved.