Western Electric                        
                       Train Dispatching Telephone System                       

The Western Electric Train Dispatching Telephone System was designed to allow train dispatchers to selectively call a number of stations along the railroad. Each remote station had a unique set of numbers the train dispatcher would select on his selector key to signal the remote station. The signaling and talk circuits used the same pair of wires. When the dispatcher desired to call a station, he simply selected that station's signaling code calling numbers and the selector key would operate a line closing relay and a polar type telegraph relay which would pulse out the digits on the line. At the remote station, the selector would respond to this code and at the end of the transmission of the code the selector would operate a bell signaling the employee at the station that the train dispatcher was calling. I have compiled a number of the calling codes from the Reading Railroad and they can be seen by clicking the following link.

Reading Railroad Train Dispatching Telephone System Calling Codes
Instruction Manual for the Railway Train Dispatching Telephone Systems
1934 Instruction Manual for the Railway Train Dispatching Telephone Systems
Maintenance of Western Electric Calling Apparatus
Video of a WE 60AP Selector
Video of a WE 60BP Selector
Video of a Gill Selector

The photos shown here are of my Train Dispatching Telephone System.

62A Selector Key
60B Apparatus Case
Inside the 60B Case
61A Selector Key
502A Subscriber Set
501A Subscriber Set
160A Selector Set
162S Selector Set
162R Selector Set
Inside the 162R Selector Set
100F Loudspeaker

Photos of the 61A Key before and after cleaning.

61A Key before cleaning
61A Key before cleaning
Parts after cleaning
61A Key Re-assembled

Photos of the 62A Key before and after cleaning the pushbuton keys and panels.

Bottom Keys disassembled
Top Keys disassembled
Detail of keys before cleaning
Detail of keys before cleaning
Key rows separated and disassembled
Contacts with keys removed
Parts ready for cleaning
62A Key re-assembled

Last Updated on March 28, 2011