The Old Telephone Company,  Essex, England
Established in 1986
Exclusively old telephones and parts for 25 years
I have personally restored and sold over 3000 old telephones

 Click here to go to British 300 1930's to1960's Ring back memories with Up Home Page    an old Bakelite telephone Click here to go to British Candlestick 1900's to 1930's       

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All telephones are available to buy by mail order
15 post and packing to all parts of the UK.
Smaller parts post and packing is from 3.50 to UK only
You can collect from my shop at weekends by arrangement




200 Series Telephone


General Information

My 200 series telephones are converted ready for use. They have a modern microphone fitted. They include either the correct bell set (see technical information below), or a later replacement, cabled to them. 

The regular type 232 is supplied either with a type 26 bell set attached to the base, or a type 64d bell set on the end of about 2 metres of cord.

Historical Information

Telephones with the same general shape as the 232 first appeared around 1928. These were the 160 series designed by Siemens Brothers of Woolwich London. Once the design had settled down in the late 1920's production was extended to other manufacturers as a standard pattern.

 The 162 and 232 differed internally and had slight external differences. Early examples did not have a drawer in the base.
From the users point of view the main difference was that the 162 required the correct bell set for it to function.
The 232 was introduced in 1934 and remained in production until 1957.

The confusingly designated 311, 354, and 366 wall telephones are included in this section as the design dates back to 1931. The type numbers were issued by Siemens Brothers of London for a series that was not used by the GPO. The design was in my opinion more advanced than the telephones being used by the GPO at that time. Generally the 311 was the wall equivalent of the 232 telephone and 26 bell set combination. The 354 was for use on very long lines, both were pre-war models. The 366 the post-war replacement for both. 
Some were used in the UK in factories and offices, but most were exported.

Technical Information

The handset design was based on current American practice and thoughts. The big step forward was the improved microphone capsule developed especially for the telephone. This microphone had to work at any handset angle without degradation and give consistent performance. It was used with only minor improvements throughout the life of the telephone.
The receiver designated type 1L was used at first. This sensitive receiver was designed to achieve maximum volume. Later in the early 1950's, improvements in the telephone system meant that volume was less of an issue, but speech clarity was. The type 2P receiver became standard, with much improved results.

The other advance was the use of an ASTIC coil (Anti Side Tone Induction Coil). This was fitted inside the 162. Its purpose was to reduce the volume of the speakers voice as heard in the receiver, technically called side tone. This effect is generally described by the public as echo. For various reasons it is desirable to maintain side tone at an optimum level. The candlestick telephone without side tone control had excessive side tone.

The 162 was intended as a replacement for the Candlestick telephone + No 1 wooden bell set combination, so it was convenient to re-use the existing type 1 bell set. This housed the line matching transformer, as well as the bell parts. A matching Bakelite, electrically similar bell set type 25 was also created for this telephone.
It was soon realised that for new installations that this was an expensive way of doing things, as a dedicated bell set had to be provided for the telephone to work (not just to ring).

In 1934 the 232 and its variants were introduced. They were superficially the same as the 162, but they contained a combined ASTIC and line matching transformer in the telephone. This meant a simplified and cheaper bell set could be used. The Bakelite type 26 bell set or the wooden type 1a bell set was used. The familiar drawer in base also began to appear. 
Bell sets 25 and 26 were designed to fit the base of the telephone turning it into a complete unit. It was heavy and fragile, but the later 300 series design addressed these and other problems.

The 232 was produced in the Mark 1 and Mark 2 editions. The main differences were in the design of the line matching transformer and the slight re-arrangement of the internal terminal layout.
Many other variants were made including wall phones,  and extension office telephones. A special version, minus base, for use with the A+B coin box was developed, and remained in use in the red telephone kiosks until superseded in the late 1960's.



Click here to visit the Battlesbridge Antiques centre website

Click here to see the Battlesbridge Antiques Centre web site

Credit/Debit Cards are the preferred method of payment. I no longer accept cheques.

If you wish to place an order, or have an enquiry, please read all below.

Please call me (Gavin Payne) by telephone if you wish to place an order for a telephone, spare parts, or have an enquiry.  I can usually be reached 9.00am to 5.45pm any day, including weekends. Calls in the evening are not appreciated and could make me very grumpy. The number is 01245 400601.

I am in the shop most Saturday and Sunday mornings between 10.00 and 12.00. These are the only times I am in the shop for the sale of spare parts, conversions and repairs.  Conversions and repairs can often be carried out while you wait.

If you have a telephone that you want to know more about, or have it repaired or converted, please have it right next to you when you call. Please also have a selection of small flat bladed screwdrivers to hand.
 I do not give advice for DIY repairs or conversions or valuations of any kind over the telephone or by email. Please bring the telephone to my shop for assessment, but always call me first before bringing it in.

Emails to or copy and paste into your email programme or app .

By post to The Old Telephone Company, The Old Granary, Battlesbridge Antiques Centre,
 Battlesbridge, Essex SS11 7RE.

The Old Telephone Company respects your privacy, and will not divulge any information about you to a third party.
Copyright 1996 to 2013 by The Old Telephone Company