1960’s Operator’s Headset modification completed

I actually completed this nearly two weeks ago, but it took me a bit to test, take pictures, and get around to posting them.

Specs: 1960’s era Telephone Operator’s headset. Dual prong 1/8″ RCA plug. Modified to run a Plantronics CT-12 wireless phone and Firefly headset system (with the glowing ‘in-use’ microphone tip).

From the photos, you’ll see I completely re-wired the internals of the headset. I used the Plantronics Firefly headset internals to swap into the operator’s headset, removing the original wiring, mic, and earphone. This left a great deal of space to work with in the ear piece, and surprisingly even more in the mic section. I used an extra foam earpiece as a backing inside the operator’s headset to hold the much smaller speaker in the center of the earpiece. The mic section is wide open and internals are visible through the perforated clear plastic covering, allowing for the red “in-use” LED indicator to be visible.

Once I learned how to wield a soldering iron, making a wiring swap was fairly easy for this project as it was essentially just shoe-horning the Firefly headset internals into the much larger operator’s headset. I retained the wired plug at the end to connect into the CT-12 wireless keypad so I have access to dial/talk/release functionality anywhere in the house. Next up is to find a solution to hide the base-station and antennae. I’m thinking a simple but nice cherry/oak box will hide it with class.

Of course, now I need to focus in on my 1930’s hand-crank office phone. That one is going to be a bit more of a challenge to retain as much functionality as possible and still make it a usable (and by usable I mean with dialing functionality) for daily office use.  To that end I have obtained an older slimline Samsung push-button wired phone from the late 80’s early 90’s which I should be able to shoe-horn into the base of the 1930’s crank. Should be very cool if I can make it work!

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