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510 telephone
#630236 06/03/19 08:32 PM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 451
OP Offline
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 451
Hi Again,

I have a "stock" of old telephones that need to be cleaned, polished and put into the phone room. I selected a nice black telephone dated 10 / 60 to clean up next.

First the phone is labeled as a 510 rather than a 500. It has a key (turn knob) on the front of the phone, I assume that this is a line selector. The wall cord is a thin four wire cord. Again, I am assuming that this is a two line capable phone.

The second thing is that the shell of this phone seems different. Unlike all of my other phones, the shells have a nice plasticy sound when I tap on them. This one has a much duller "thud" when I tap on it. It also seems to be softer. I do know that it takes a beautiful shine when buffed with turtle wax polish compound on a slow wheel.

Any information or thoughts on this would be most appreciated.



Real comms took 200lb teletypes, hand keys, sounders, operators and cranked phones!
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Re: 510 telephone
TeletypeJoe #630713 06/24/19 08:30 PM
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,290
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,290
The 510 is a two-line telephone. T&R 1 is on Green/Red, and T&R 2 is on Yellow/Black.

Are you familiar with ? Paul Fassbender is a friend and fellow member of TCI and ATCA. His web site shows thumbnails of Western telephones, a brief description, and generally, a BSP reference. Without his site as a resource, you are at a disadvantage. See, for example,

There are two kinds of plastic used in WE phones of that vintage: "soft plastic" and ABS. Soft plastic phones came first. They are very collectable, and bring bigger bucks from collectors than the later ABS phones. They are distinguished, as you have discovered, by the "thud" sound when tapped, and by what is described as a vomit odor when the caps are unscrewed from the handset.

From a distance, assuming a stock telephone, you can immediately identify a soft plastic phone by observing that the transmitter and receiver caps do not have a center hole in the perforation pattern. "Hard plastic" phones have the center hole punched out.

Hope this helps.


Arthur P. Bloom
"30 years of faithful service...15 years on hold"

Re: 510 telephone
TeletypeJoe #631576 08/03/19 11:03 PM
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,290
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 3,290

Arthur P. Bloom
"30 years of faithful service...15 years on hold"

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