AEI 800 Telephone

AEI 800 series telephones

The 800 series was the name given by AEI to their version of the BPO Telephone 706.

Black, ivory, two-tone grey, green, probably others.

Customers of AEI's own Private Systems Department, British Railways (Southern Region), some provinces of Canada (these export versions had 2000-ohm ringers and the North American number ring with 6 MNO and 0 Operator).

As an apprentice draughtsman at Siemens Brothers, Woolwich, late 1950s to early 1960s, I worked on the 800 series telephones.   For their Centenary, Siemens had proposed the ground-breaking 'Centenary Neophone' - the first to use a P.C.B. for the circuit, and possibly the first to use ABS thermoplastics for the case.  This was a beautiful design done by an outside consultant.  This fixes the date, as their centenary was in 1958.  

Due to the usual politics within the P.O., it was not accepted and a poorer Ericsson design was taken up.  However, even to the P.O., the idea of using a P.C.B. seemed a good one (instead of the appalling hard-wired cat's cradle on pillars in the Ericsson prototype) and Siemens found themselves in the position of having to make another company's design (the P.O. always had three suppliers for their equipment).  

Siemens Brothers engineers also studied a Siemens of Germany (no connection except historically) telephone where, cleverly, everything had been crammed into a canister just behind the dial (i.e., the case was virtually empty) but this was probably too advanced for the UK.

Unknown contributer

BACK Home page BT/GPO Telephones Search the Site Glossary of Telecom Terminology Quick Find All Telephone Systems

Last revised: March 19, 2018