– but get this, we know of some even older, still in use).
A make of phone we’ve never seen first hand is called Du Kane.
The donated gear included a good mix of old phones.
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If you want one of the phones seen, drop us a line. All have been cleaned, but are otherwise EXACTLY as they were when pulled from service.
Expect minor wear, dings, paint splotches, kinked cords, etc. We still have more boxes to go through, so there should be more to come.
PAINTING NOTES: Many of the older telephones were made of metal and in most cases need painting.
We have our phones (when stated) professionally powder-coated in a black satin paint.
The yellow desktop seen, has a teal dial, telling us someone combined two phones to make one. Some older Northern Electric Uniphone models were found and are made of Bakelite. We also found a few Northern Telecom NE2500 push button “touch tone” phones, the successor to the NE500. These were made from the late 1960s into the 1990s.
Two tone was never factory offered, that we know of. All Northern Telecom/Electric phones, and their US made counterparts, are quite robust and very serviceable. A major competitor to Northern Electric (and Western Electric in the US) was Automatic Electric.
These were made in Austria but sold in North America for a time, it seems. A European made ATEA (Automatic Electric Belgium) was found. Most phones in Canada, were made in Canada, so ones from outside our borders are pretty odd.
Real works of art, inside and out, they’ll make someone very happy. Many of the phones still have the old number listed on the centre of the dial.
The Galt Historic Railway Park, Stirling Alberta, acquired a large consignment of vintage telcom equipment and asked for our expertise in helping set up an exhibit at the museum showcasing them. One of the first tasks was to pick out phones destined for display.
These are set aside for now and will likely be the subject of another report later on (you can see some of them in the photos). Join us as we document some of the work we did this day. Our workshop is an ancient railway passenger car located at the park. It’s a production line of sorts – phones are quickly assessed to see they’re complete, if the dial works and so on.
They’ve recently acquired some vintage railway passenger cars and are in the process of cleaning them out so they can be used to hold displays and exhibits and things like that.