Ericsson 10+50 PABX

This PABX is the jewel of my telephone collection. It is an Ericsson Telephones Limited/Plessey Strowger (step) PABX, with capacity for 10 exchange lines (trunks) and 50 extensions.

Other Surviving Systems



2002 - Acquisition

Good things come to those who wait. Or, Good things come to those who reply to an e-mail first.

From: Bill
To: Telephone Collectors International Mailing List
Received: 3 Mar 2002 
Subject: FREE, to a good home. Shipping Extra.

A 1970's, Etelco PABX. Made in England. Fully operational. Located in
Edmonton, Alberta. Equipped with relay sets for ten trunks, line
equipment for fifty locals, seven selector/connectors, full featured
console, and a eight amp, ferro-res. power supply. This unit has the
following features; "0" level for operator assist, "9" for out line,
"8" for 'night answer', "7" for tie line, or second group of out trunks,
call transfer by ground button, and self contained ring, tone, and
interrupter supplies. The switch will operate in "Night answer" mode
without the console. The documentation is complete, with all the
operating and adjustment manuals, wiring diagrams, and schematics. There
are spare ring and tone, and interrupter sets. Also some tools. The
cabinet is 20" deep, 35" wide, 72" high, and weighs about 900# fully
equipped. Stripping the relay sets and switches out would reduce the
weight to about 700#.
I no longer have space for the unit, and if I'm unable to find someone
to take it, it will have to be scrapped.
e-mail, or call (xxx) xxx-xxxx for more info. 

Some time elapsed before I picked up my third system, and my most prized switching posession. In 2001, a telephone collector in Edmonton, Alberta, was giving away a free 50 line British Ericsson PABX. I just needed to figure our shipping. Easy, I thought, I have an uncle that lives in Edmonton. To complicate things, I had recently moved out of home, to a town 4 hours to the west, and 4 hours further away fron Edmonton. I think I owe my uncle a lifetime supply of beer, because he managed to line up a trailer, and truck with a liftgate, and soon had the system parked in his garage.

The PABX sat in his garage while I tried to figure out a way to retrieve it. The company that I worked for had just gone through a meltdown, and I was in no position to rent a truck and drag a thousand pounds of fine british engineering out of the north. Some months later, my parents were holding a 35th anniversary party, to which all family had been invited. Being that my aunt, uncle and cousin from Alberta were my only extended family in all of Canada, I was pretty sure that they would make the trip. What I didn't expect was that my uncle had managed to load the entire PABX into his truck, and drag it, as well as his RV trailer all the way into the rockies without having his truck melt down.

Fortunatley, having all the family there meant that this time I had all three brothers, my dad, my uncle, and a couple friends around to help unload the PABX. Regardless, there were were points in the process where it felt like we could use 6 more people. With a little "countryfolk ingenuity", and with the help of a well placed ditch, we were able to unload the cabinet from the back of the truck with only a bit of grunting and groaning and no flattened toes. I managed to convince the zoning board (my parents) to allow me to expand my collection into the ground floor of the same building that housed the SG-1As. A good thing, as I wouldn't have trusted anything but a concrete floor to carry the weight of my latest acquisition.

And here is where it sat for the next 15 years:

2016 - Installation

Put on trailer, drive 650 kilometers.

Oh neat. 1970. 46 years old.

Recommended floor plan.

Lovely, loud power supply.

And it's alive! Thanks for the goodies, Chris.


Sorting out exchange circuits.

Trunk positions 1-10 are actually trunk positions 7-10, 1-6.

BIX it is.

Sorting out my cross connect area.

2019 - Update

It has come to my attention that the previous owner of this PABX, Charles William "Bill" Smail passed away on August 1, 2014. Thanks for passing the torch, Bill.