Here’s the second present that arrived this week. A Brown model. I was expecting to receive a North Electric Brown because it has the typical North Electric brown color and the North Electric dial face, but has turned out slightly different.
As you can see the Brown is different from the PTT Dark Brown that I know very well. Opening the phone, to check the insides, I discovered that the chassis is from 1960, the speaker from 1979. The buzzer is a weird piece of metal… and the shell is painted. Professionally because it looks great from the outside… but painted. Originally most likely Crystal Mint and no date to be seen anymore.
So what is all this?
This is a so called CEAC phone.
In the late 1970s, North Electric withdrew from the telephone manufacturing business and with this from the Ericofon. A telephone rebuilding company, CEAC (Communication Equipment And Contracting Company) were at their peak at this time, and since they envisioned a future market for the Ericofon they purchased the “line” from North Electric. CEAC changed the product code to a simple 52, and offered it with or without the tone ringer. CEAC discontinued production of the Ericofon in the early 1980s and the company itself closed shortly thereafter.
In fact CEAC compiled phones together from all the parts they inherited. They even sprayed shells in popular colors. So this is a CEAC phone, a true ‘Frankenphone’. Except for the weird buzzer and capacitor all original parts.
Nevertheless a very nice item to have… it has its charm and I will for sure keep it. It is part of the Ericofon history afterall.