Western Electric "Demitasse"

Dial-In-Handset Prototypes

©2002-3 paulf.  All rights reserved.
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F-52578 Manual Deskset       F-52578 Dial Deskset      F-52937 Manual Wall Set

These units were used in Field Trials and never made it to production.

WE F-52578 - front view

WE F-52578 - top view

WE F-52578 - bottom  
F-52578 Manual Deskset

Talk about your minimalist phone!!  Here it is!

The base footprint is a mere 3" x 3 1/4".  With handset and cord, it's about 9 1/2" wide.

The handset is a standard G1.

Based on some advertising photos, I believe the same base was also used with a prototype handset that included a dial over the transmitter (see below).
Cover removed.

The housing is made of soft plastic.  Note the gently curved sides, designed to pick up the curve of the handset.

  WE F-52578 - case open
 WE F-52578 - inside detail

WE F-52578 - hookswitch

They put the guts in with a shoe horn.

The hookswitch leaves are way down at the bottom and are linked with a flat plastic plate similar to that in a 554.

The line cord has 4 conductors.  The set works fine with red and green connected to L1 and L2.

Yellow goes to a terminal marked B, which also has the black handset lead to the transmitter element and a wire to the coil.  Black goes to a terminal marked A.

There is no ringer.

Anyone happen to have a schematic of this or a similar set?

[WE F-52578 - cradle next to 500H

WE F-52578 - cradle next to 500H, side view
For reference, here it is next to a 500H set of similar vintage.

The width is about the same, but the cradle sides and plungers are noticeably narrower.
WE F-52578 - handset with dial

Dial-in-handset dial detail
F-52578 Dial Deskset

Here's the dial version!

The base is the same, but there is a dial in the handset.  An N-1 transmitter is in the center of the dial (and rotates with it).  A 6-conductor handset cord is used with 2 conductors each for transmitter, receiver and dial pulse.

The dial is much different than other WE dials!  Everything from the center casting to the transmitter rotates with the fingerwheel.  The "top" two channels contain the mechanism for getting the stationary transmitter leads to the transmitter.  The dial has no shunt contacts so dialed pulses are heard through the receiver.  Fortunately, the receiver isn't near your ear while dialing!

Thanks to Paul Hoberg for saving this set and the wall set prototype below from the dumpster at the Indianapolis plant, and for permission to use his photos!
Prototype Wall Set

Wall Prototype Side View

Wall Prototype Back

F-52937 Manual Wall Set

Here's the wall version -- in Gray!

Also apparently available in manual or dial versions (See ad below).

Note the thin profile.  It's quite a packaging feat for the time of manufacture.

The interior photos below were provided by John La Rue and Wayne Merit.

Inside  View

Inside View Vertical
WE F-52578 in ad

Ad showing wall mount
Ads featuring Dial-In-Handset Phones

Here are details cropped and enlarged from poor copies of Bell System ads.

Please contact me if you have photos of similar sets, or good quality scans of ads with this set in either desk or wall mountings, and I'll add them to this page.  Thanks!

Please send comments or photos of your favorite phones to: 

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©2002-3 paulf.  All rights reserved.