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Western Electric Handset Mounting Types

Desk Set Identification Aid


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A-type mounting   B-type mounting   C-type mounting   D-type mounting

E-type mounting   G-type mounting   WE H-mounting   WE L-mounting   WE M-mounting

 
This page provides general identification information on the major Western Electric handset mounting types, focusing on types A thru G.

Handset mountings were introduced in the mid-1920s.  Their purpose was to provide the mechanical structure to hold a handset, line switch, optional dial and provide cord terminations.

The handset mounting with switchhook, handset, cords, plus a dial or appartus blank was termed a "hand telephone set."

To make a complete telephone, the hand telephone set was wired to a "subscriber set" (subset), which included a coil, capacitor and ringer.  The subset was in a box that could be conveniently mounted near the hand telephone set on the wall or side of a desk.

Handset mountings coded A thru G were used in hand telephone sets with model numbers in the 100- and 200-series.  Later handset mountings were used in so-called "combined sets," where all the components, including the subset, were integrated into one package. 

Most early telephones in the 300- and 400-series had mounting codes, while some of the later models did not.

Telephone sets beginning with the 500-series did not use handset mounting codes.



Handset mountings have several variations with suffix numbers and letters to denote
different terminal, switch and wiring arrangements.  See the catalogs or BSPs for details.
There are undoubtedly more BSP references to be found.

The table below shows photos for each handset mounting in a complete telephone, along with a brief description, list of representative telephone sets that use the mounting and some BSP references, to help with your research.

Note that the model numbers in the 100 and 200 series telephones include
the wiring characteristics and all components of the phone including the subset and cords.  Models such as the 102, 103, 104 and 202 can be be wired with appropriate A, B or D mountings .  Therefore the model number can not be readily identified without a close inspection of the subset type and wiring.

For example, a 102 does not always include a B1 mounting.  It can use an A1 or D1 mounting instead.  Similarly, a 202 can be wired using an A, B or D mounting.

Therefore, it is generally preferable to use the mounting code letter when identifying a phone, unless you are certain of the subset type and how the phone is wired.
(e.g. use A1, B1 or D1 -- not 102 or 202)


Color information is on the page "Phones in Color!"
Handset types are on the page "Western Electric Handset Styles"

Follow links where available to detail pages highlighting the major variations.

This is a work in progress.  Please send comments, additions and corrections.



Photo
Description & Marking
Common
Uses
BSP/
Catalog
A-type with A handset
A-type with A handset


A-type with E handset
A-type with E handset
WE A Handset Mounting

Manual set uses 50D apparatus blank.

Marked A3 and overstrike A1
Marked A3 on back  - and -  converted from A3 to A1

A-type stem markings
Many are marked D76869 on back

Some early E1 handsets on A mountings may be marked D-80370.

NOTE:  The common variation is the A1.  For some reason, it is often referred to as an AA1 - an error that has been propagated in a popular collector reference book.  Western Electric references we have seen call it an A1, or possibly an A1A. 

There is a set with a mounting code of AA1, but it's in the 300-series. Check it out here:
    http://www.paul-f.com/we300typ.htm#AA1
Hand
Telephone
Sets

102
103
104

202
ATT Spec
4801
(Dec '27)

C32.301
C32.375
C32.060

C32.160
C32.161

B-type with E handset
B-type with E handset

B-type, manual
B-type, manual
WE B Handset Mounting

Replaced the A-type mountings.

Manual set uses 50H apparatus blank.

Marked "B" and a number on the back just below the cradle.
102
103
104


202
203

ATT Spec
4801
(Dec '27)

C32.101

C32.301
C32.375
C32.060

C38.403 to
C38.431

-sidetone-
C32.160
C44.101

-antisidetone-
C32.161
C44.102
C-type  C-type, side view
C-type with 39A dial mounting and dial
WE C Handset Mounting

Rectangular cross section.

Manual set uses a card holder in place of the dial mounting.

Mounts on wall or side of desk or counter, suing a simple L-shaped bracket..

Marked "C" and a number on the main housing.
101
201
ATT Spec
4801
(Dec '27)

C32.301
C32.375
C32.060

-sidetone-
C32.102
C32.160
C44.101

-antisidetone-
C32.103
C32.161
C44.102

501-160-100
D-type with E handset
WE D Handset Mounting

Replaced the B-type mountings.

Manual set uses a 50J apparatus blank.

Elliptical base for better stability when dialing and aesthetics.

Recessed dial requires a #4 or later dial.

Marked "D" and a number on the back just below the cradle.

See more photos below.
102
103
104

202
203
206
207
215
C32.301
C32.375
C32.060

C38.403 to
C38.431

-sidetone-
C32.102
C32.160
C44.101

-antisidetone-
C32.103
C32.161
C44.102
E-type with E handset
E-type with E handset

E4 and E7 keys
E4 keys marked 1 2 3 H L
E7 keys marked H 1 2 3 L

E5 Keys
E5 keys marked 1 2  H L B

H for hold
L for local intercom line
B for code ringing (buzzer)
WE E Handset Mounting

Multi-line keyset with controls for hold and local intercom.

Functions are supplied by an external equipment cabinet.

See internal details below.

Marked "E" and a number on the back below the cradle.

(The neck shape is different than the A, B or D mountings.)

E4 back with marking   E7 back with marking
E4 replaced by E7 for businesses.

E5 back with marking
E5 for residences.
105

205
208
C32.301
C32.375
C32.060

-sidetone-
C32.102
C32.160
C44.101

-antisidetone-
C32.103
C32.161
C44.102
G Handset Mounting, F Handset, Subset
G-type with subset and F handset

WE G Handset Mounting, G Handset, Subset
G-type with subset and G handset
WE G Handset Mounting

Square cross section.

Manual version has a card holder in place of the dial mounting.

Early 41A dial mounting was replaced by the 43A adjustable dial mounting.

Marked "G" and a number, usually below the cradle.

See more photos below.
211
212
213
214
C38.323 to
C38.473

501-160-100
For more info on variations of the sets below, see the WE 300-series page or follow links to specific models.
WE 300-series desk set
WE H, S, AA and AB Handset Mountings

Used on 300-series desk telephones.

Usually marked with mounting code letters and a number on the inside of the housing near the rear cord hole.

Some metal housings marked outside the rear cord hole.
300-series
C38.545 to
C38.579
WE J-type with F handset
WE J Handset Mountings

Used on 400-series keysets with twist keys.

Usually marked "J" and a number on the inside of the housing near the rear cord hole.
410
411
C38.591 to
C38.594
WE L-type with F handset
WE L Handset Mountings

Used on 400-series 4- and 6-button keysets.

Usually marked "L" and a number on the inside of the housing near the rear cord hole.
44x
46x
C38.591 to
C38.594
WE M-type with F handset
WE M Handset Mountings

Used on 300-series wall telephones.

Usually marked "M" and a number on the inside of the back plate.
35x
C38.575
C38.577
Telephones after the 300/400-series do not use mounting codes.



Other D-type mounting uses
D1E1 in Bronze
D-type in Bronze Paint

A list of other colors is found here:
"Phones in Color"

D1F1 Imperial
D1 Imperial
Refurb model released in mid-1950s.

One of several attempts to increase
the lifespan of the D-type by creating
an "upscale" nostalgic re-release.

Shown sitting on subset, which was mounted on the wall or desk side.  Compare with the GN4676.

Similar Continental models were made with bases painted in standard colors. and matching handsets.
For colors:
"Phones in Color"
GN4676, using D1 mounting and F handset
D1 as part of the GN4676
Refurb model released in mid-1950s

Most found sets are dated in mid-1955.
F4 handset.

Uses a new cover on a 684A subset
with a recess to hold the D1 firmly attached to the subset.
Metal and plastic covers have been found.



E5 mounting internal parts
E5 internal parts


Other G-type mounting uses
G-type with intercom buttons
G-type used as an intercom station

Pushbuttons used to signal other stations
G-type on scissors mount
G-type on a scissors mount





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©2011-15 paulf.  All rights reserved.