Just yesterday I received 2 Sandalwood models with a special dial face. Actually I bought the 2 phones because of the dial faces.
Due to shortage of Ericofons in the US, North Electric imported phones from Sweden or other markets. Those were then adapted to the specific US market needs.
To rebrand this dial face from Swedish to US type, a sticker on the outer part of the dial face has been applied to have the typical letters available.
More information on rebranding can be found in a previous post on these circles of mania.
So far I have been posting articles every month but this month I have been extremely busy with my work and some holidays as well. Not too bad so I am not complaining. There was just no time to prepare a post at all.
There has been little to no activity in the Ericofon field. Nothing bought, nothing sold. Usually there is something happening, but not this time.
If you are curious on what happened to the activities and phones in the previous post… the answer is nothing at all… 😉
In the past few months I received some phones from all kinds of sources here in The Netherlands. Ericofons that are circulating, so to say. They go from one person to another until they end up in my ‘workshop’. There they will be dismantled, cleaned, repaired and put together again, or re-used in any other way.
Since I have a full time job, I do not have so much time to work on this as much as I would like to. But now and then I have the urge to create. On those moments I sit down and focus on the phones that I have gathered over time, after removing the dust. All tools and spare parts are spread on the table and then the fun begins.
There is no professional workshop and no garage full of shiny equipment. Although I have all the right tools available. Most of the models that I get are not for myself anymore but I’ll make sure they will get a second chance and will not end up in a place they should not be. Only if they are 100% okay they will be resold and find a new onwer. The latter will not be easy on the Crystal Mint green that I received recently.
It will be a hard job to get this one in a good shape. The reason it was painted is because it is heavily yellowed over time. Since the blue paint was coming off and I do not like painted Ericofons at all. It equals Trappist beer with grenadine… another combination that is ‘not done’ in my humble opinion.
In my never ending search for new models I am exploring all the corners of vintage stores, second hand shops, flea markets and the internet. There I encounter many different Ericofons.
Some are in good shape, some are in bad shape. Sometimes you see surprises and nice to haves, and sometimes you run into very, very ugly Ericofons: painted.
If the color of your Ericofon might not be your favorite color (anymore), I can agree that you want to paint it. But then I would prefer a one color version and not a pattern. Patterns, hmm, I don’t know. See also the post on the other creative activity: ugly lights.
Besides the painting in a different color, you also find very creative utterings. Floral Ericofons are rather common, for some reason the Ericofon invites people to think about flowers. Below are 2 examples from the net of floral design that go far beyond painting only…
If both phones where decorated by the same person, I do not know. But there is a sort of resemblance. Coincidence or a natural way of putting flowers on the shape?
After showing these floral phone pictures to my daughers they were inspired and asked me for a shell as well to get rid of their creative energy. Since I had one left that could not be saved anymore I gave it to them. See the result below. Surprisingly a non floral design. Actually I like it, but I might be a bit prejudiced.
This is the only smart-Ericofon as far as I know. It runs the most recent ‘Safari’ version without problems. Apple should like it. 😉
About 2 years ago I posted ‘Blue’ when my first Old Case blue, which appeared to be a Wedgwood, was a fact. Received it during the X-Mas holidays in 2014, from Sweden. Now I have all three blue colors in the Old Case. Wedgwood, Aqua Mist and Nordic Blue. The Aqua Mist and the Nordic Blue are North Electric models.
On top of that my daughters surprised me, during the season holidays, with a very nice old Ericsson suitcase. In fact it is a toolcase which they found on a local fleamarket, and they could not resist it. Nice for dad’s phone tools 😉 Of course it is blue as well. The ‘old’ Ericsson blue, but blue.
These pictures were taken from the Ericsson archive.
The picture above shows a patent filed by Hugo Blomberg in 1968 and published in 1970. It is a so called wallbracket for standing telephones. More information can be found here. To my understanding this is the first patent for this kind of accessory. A rather strange looking phonestand I would say. Not sure if they were ever put into production.
Since 1968 a few more patents can be found. This is another one from Hugo Blomberg with more or less the same purpose, filed in 1976.
More information on this wall-stand for telephone sets of standing handset type patent can be found here. For some reason I do not have any connection with these kind of inventions. Nevertheless there was even a patent filed in 2013 for mobile phones…
The dutch word for wall is muur by the way.
Around the autumn equinox I was able to get this beautiful Dusty Rose old case. In perfect shape and from 1959. The warm September fits the warm dark pink color, a typical autumn shade.
This is the 15th old case that I could get. Still missing 3 to have that series complete. Chartreuse, Riviera and Royal Dubonnet. Plenty of time to find them somewhere…
In need of some earcaps or earpieces I was going through a box with all kinds of spare parts from shells. Things you gather over time and you never throw away. Luckily the volume is not that big so a small box more or less does not matter in my garage. And for some reason you will always end up with usefull destinations… hopefully ;-).
This is what I had in mind when I bought the 2 Gold Plate shells from the previous post. Going trough the box I selected some different caps and I realized there was some ‘inside information’ to be shared on this topic as well.
Flat – Sandalwood
Wedge – Candle Glow and Persian Gray
According to my knowledge there are 2 types of speakers available in the Ericofon that have been used over the years. The wedge cap is available in 2 flavours to fit both of them. For the flat cap, I do not know if it comes with both speakers at all.
According to what I experienced, the bigger speaker tends to break from the cap from time to time since it is only mounted with 2 metal clips on plastic ridges. Therefor some Ericofons produce a rattling sound if you shake them. This can be resolved by stuffing the top of the phone with some soft material. It is not really fixing the problem but keep the speaker in place and you will get rid of the annoying rattle. Sound quality will also improve a bit if you use the phone.
This week I received a picture from Peter Schröder who encountered an interesting modification on this flat earpiece.
We do not have a clue where the metal bar is used for. I can only think about extra possibilities in remounting the cap. But glue will also work without it.
If you do know, pleae tell me.
Today I received an extraordinary box in the mail, containing three DIY shells.
The Chrome Plated in the middle is in fact a complete shell, this one I will complete to a nice shining silver Ericofon. The other shells are Gold Plated, not to be confused with the Aztec types. Unfortunately both shells do not have the original gold plated earcap anymore so I had put in white ones for the picture. Let’s see if I can get them painted somewhere in the ‘cheapest-shinyest-chinese-plastic-toy-gold-color’ that exists. The shells are all NOS, but they have some wear from bad storage.
Both Gold Plated will become part of my collection, one with a wedge and the other with a flat earpiece.
Putting a phone together is not the biggest challenge anymore, but getting the earcaps in the right color will be. See it as a guide for beginners or maybe a guide for finishers.
This weekend I have completed the 2 Gold Plated phones. In the box with spare parts I had two complete sets of North Electric stuff. Including a flat and wedge earcap.
Earlier I have informed at several places, including professional painters, the best way to finish the earcaps. Or to have them professionally finished. The result was that all parties did not guarantee the exact color. Gold seems to be quite difficult. You can also see that both shells have a different gold color. The original surface is also very sensitive to e.g. (acid) fingerprints.
So in the end I bought some recommended paint and decided to go for it myself. First some experiments took place on a scrapped shell. Just to make sure the right combination of paint and distance. The result is actually not bad. It is not as shiny as the original but it comes very close.
In the process of getting the Aztec Gold in better shape there is no progress. It is very hard to get the color AND structure right. Not sure if I will succeed there.
A nice detail about the gold and chrome plated shells: they actually conduct electricity. While testing one of the phones a wire on the inside made contact to the shell. When I pickup the phone, I felt it ringing… It is approximately 60 Volts so nobody was hurt 😉