Former Items

While I like to collect various types of technology, sometimes lack of interest or a need for money, items are disposed from my collection. Here are a few that have been sold, or disposed.


1970s reproduction of a ’20s era candlestick phone, it was nice looking, but it needed a better home. A Brooklyn resident won this on eBay in 2013.


This version of a Western Electric 500 Telephone was disposed during a yard sale in 2012. I acquired this circa 2010 and it worked. The problem? The set wasn’t authentic end to end. The handset was made on one date, the telset was made on another, the handset wasn’t for sale, but the telset was. This phone was ether rebuilt or what. I wanted something totally original and not all mixed up. I didn’t pay that much and I think I got it for $10 when I sold it.



A nearly mint Cisco 7911 going to a lucky bidder on eBay in 2011 after a botched attempt on  going to VOIP at home. 4 years later, I have a similar set and a similar system (after cheating my way through Cisco’s IOS and using a dedicated applications server to do file transfers.)



A Panasonic desk set and a cordless telephone. Both sucked. The wired one had a bad echo effect, the cordless was just a pain to use. I believe this was a hand me down. The battery wouldn’t hold a charge, and never got to finding an appropriate battery. The low battery would make a loud beep and scared the hell out of me when I’d be asleep. I was lucky to catch this just as I shipped this for an eBay bidder, because god forbid this beeped in transit, I’d indirectly be on the news for potentially shipping a dangerous weapon!


A Polycom 501 IP Phone. These are considered as the “poor mans” Cisco, but they are in my opinion crap. It’s not to say SoundStations are nice, but SoundPoints, the IP version just sucks. The industrial design is flat, boring, there are button caps (like an old Nortel set), and administratively is a pain. Another weird problem in the design is the phone can’t be natively hung to the wall without a really large back piece to attach to.

Apparently cables are allowed to roam free, so there isn’t channeling to tuck in handset or Ethernet cables into. And to power this phone, it requires POE. If you weren’t lucky in the early 10s to get a POE switch, Polycom did make an adaptor. Yet another odd looking design both visually and administratively.

Originally this set had MGCP and I was able to get this to run SIP. Then the thing crashed and got into a infinite loop where I was never able to get the thing to work again. This was sold in 2012.



The Cisco 7960 IP Phone is good in some ways, bad in some. Of course this comes from a 20/20 point of view. The operating system is proprietary and it can’t run apps. Great if you struggle doing Java. The screen can burn in heavily, but it can access the Call Manager’s directory natively as opposed to the Java phones which requires more applications on the sever to get the directory. It also doesn’t do POE (like the IEE standard). Administratively, the original 79x0s are a real royal pain to deal with. The Java phones are a little easier if there’s a glitch.

During the Cisco experiment, I acquired a 1760V router, a Cisco 7960 and a 7911 while already owning a Catalyst 2960. At the time, I really didn’t know how to use these systems and as a result the router, switch and the two phones were sold. Later I’d pull an insanity by buying a new 1760V, and a boatload of 7941, an FXO cards, and an ATA. Now the house is a full fledged Cisco shop for voice and data routing, Netgear and Nortel for switching.

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I disposed (instead of “donating”) these three Avaya Red sets to the NH Telephone Museum in September 2015. They bought all 3 for $40.  That will be going into my savings for my  Museum. I disposed 3 sets, a 4630 (rarely seen, it was one of the first touch IP phones), a 4610SW IP and the 8434DX set. (This was the one I acquired in 2012 to find out in 2015  the display was non functioning.) I swapped the desi strips from another extension I had tied to my Definity switch to basically show the people how the terminal would be in a real world setting. As I mentioned in the post, 8434s were often seen in the major news networks, network operations centers (or the “war rooms”), the White House before they went all Cisco, etc. Even though the set is proprietary, it has a legacy for being on many important desktops for almost a generation.

The NHTM did not have any Avaya Red sets in the 1960s-present gallery, except for a few Western Electric and AT&T consumer sets. There was a number of Avaya Blue sets. I kidded around suggested they “meet a quota.”  I hope this true favor will be worth it when I visit again at some point.