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Old 27th May 2019, 10:33 pm   #41
Pellseinydd
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Default Re: "Butt" 'phone

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Originally Posted by Dave Moll View Post
Apologies, after checking one of my 704s, I find I have misremembered - it doesn't have a "monitor" function, just "CB" or "LB" for communicating with, respectively, the exchange or the subscriber's end.
Not quite correct I've just checked the Tele 704 I have on my GPO van and it does have the facility to monitor the line without looping it. It all depends on which model 704 you've got! Mine is the original Tele 704 marked as 'GPO Tele 704' on the top of the lid . By pressing the button on the handset it is possible to monitor the line without looping it - just tried but the switch has to be in the 'CB' position. Loops the line in the LB position. See the 'N' diagram N804

The Engineering Instruction for the Tele 704 states
2. PREVENTION OF INTERFERENCE TO WORKING CIRCUITS
When connecting the telephone to a pair in a cable that contains working circuits, prevent possible disturbance to a working circuit as follows:-
1.Set the three-position slider switch to the CB position and connect the telephone to line.

2.Press the transmitter CUT-OFF button on the handset before removing the handset from its cradle.

3.Check that the line is not in use.

3. AUTOMATIC EXCHANGE LINES
1.Check, as described in par 2, that the line is not in use.

2.If the line is not in use, release the transmitter CUT-OFF button.

3.Dial the required number.



The Tele 704 was superseded in 1973 by the 'PO Tele 704B' marked on the top and that has had an 82 ohm resistor fitted such that it kept the loop even when the microphone was disconnected. I assume that the same applies to the 'BT Tele 704C' which followed it - but that's too late for my van !

Last edited by Pellseinydd; 27th May 2019 at 10:53 pm.
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Old 28th May 2019, 9:54 am   #42
Dave Moll
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Default Re: "Butt" 'phone

I can confirm the monitor function to be available, using my telephone tester, with one of the three 704s that I have.

The one specifically labelled as a 704B, as expected, continues to make a loop with the cut-off button pressed.

The second, with no model number label, but with a sticker saying BBC, only makes a loop when the cut-off button is released.

The final (unlabelled) one doesn't have a cut-off button.

By the way, it would be a BAD idea to connect to a CB/auto exchange in LB mode, as one would be attempting to put power from the battery onto an already-powered line!
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Last edited by Dave Moll; 28th May 2019 at 9:58 am. Reason: By the way...
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Old 28th May 2019, 10:27 am   #43
Pellseinydd
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Default Re: "Butt" 'phone

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By the way, it would be a BAD idea to connect to a CB/auto exchange in LB mode, as one would be attempting to put power from the battery onto an already-powered line!
And a CBS exchange but they were probably before your time

Incidentally the Tele 250 always feeds battery out to line even on 'auto' !

There seem to be quite a few non-GPO/PO/BT variants of the Tele 704 style including ones without provision for the dial. I had one that I sold a couple of years ago and there is one on eBay at the moment
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Old 28th May 2019, 11:42 am   #44
Dave Moll
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Default Re: "Butt" 'phone

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Incidentally the Tele 250 always feeds battery out to line even on 'auto' !
Yes, I discovered that when I acquired mine. This seems a rather dubious way of operating.
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Old 28th May 2019, 2:09 pm   #45
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Default Re: "Butt" 'phone

Hello all.
I keep wondering how a poor lonely little Aussie butt phone found itself in a car boot sale in the "Old Dart"?
Consider that these bits of kit were never sold to the general public. They were manufactured in the government PMG workshop in Melbourne and intended for the use of PMG employees only. In fact many years ago anyone found in possession of one of these was going to be asked some very serious questions by the constabulary as to just how it was acquired.
For many years in Australia the PMG's Department held a very tight rein on anything to do with the PSTN. All but a very few subs phones were rented from the department. There were no contractors other than equipment manufacturers own technicians doing exchange equipment installation. Members of the public were not allowed to touch any phone wiring even in their own homes. This holds true today however most of the work is done by licensed contractors. I guess Dave that your phone somewhere along has been discarded or nicked way back in the mists of history. Quite often this sort of stuff has been accumulated by an employee of said organization and for some reason has not been handed back on retirement or whatever. It is so old that nobody cares any more. I have met storemen that have thanked me for taking something as it saves them from the paperwork and having to throw it in the bin.
The PMG's Dept. was a federal govt. body and covered the whole of Australia but there was another govt. department that had it's own telephone system that the PMG had no say in. The New South Wales Govt. Railways. They had their own comprehensive phone system. and their own methods on Railway land.
It is nice for me to know that I am not alone in collecting butt phones.
I found dagskarlsen's pictures fascinating. Especially the one with the two dials.
Anyway, enough of my chatter for now.
Cheers all, Robert.
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Old 28th May 2019, 3:14 pm   #46
Dave Moll
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Default Re: "Butt" 'phone

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I keep wondering how a poor lonely little Aussie butt phone found itself in a car boot sale in the "Old Dart"?
Just to clarify, this 'phone wasn't bought at a car boot sale, it was from a telephone dealer at the National Vintage Telecommunications Fair.

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Originally Posted by QQVO6/40 View Post
I guess Dave that your phone somewhere along has been discarded or nicked way back in the mists of history.
I assume it entered the collectors' market in a similar manner to the ones displayed earlier in this thread, but somehow accompanied its then owner on a trip from Oz to Blighty.
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Old 9th Sep 2019, 10:39 am   #47
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Default Re: "Butt" 'phone

BT Branded butt phone I picked up at the weekend for a couple of quid or so.
Not a pretty one though.
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Old 9th Sep 2019, 12:49 pm   #48
Dave Moll
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Default Re: "Butt" 'phone

One of the extra features I like about the 290 (as above) is the LEDs below the keypad that show the polarity of the line - green on the right for correct and red on the left for reversed.
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