Gray 34A-10

Published: July 2012

Mike’s Vintage Payphone by Mike Davis This month’s example is a Gray 34A-10. It is another one of the full size paystations. The paystation has no internal ringer or talk circuit, it connected to a subset. The phone is a 2 piece, separate transmitter/receiver rather than having a handset. The transmitter is attached to the phone via a round AE mount. It was made for the Strowger System or Automatic Electric. It has a post-pay coin relay that does not hold a coin in escrow. All coins dropped into the proper slots are directed into the vault. Coins would be dropped once the connection was made. This model as well as some others you will be seeing have a very thin coin return chute (see photo). The reason they could get away with the thin chute is that only a coin that was dropped into the wrong slot would be returned, that being the case only a single coin would be returned at a time. In pre-pay models many coins that were held in escrow. If the connection wasn't made all the deposited coins would be returned at one time. That would clog this type of chute. These chutes were used on only a few models and then discontinued, I am sure even with one coin at a time traveling through they were troublesome. When I got this phone the chute was clogged with dirt, the remains of the wiring diagram and a couple very old coins. The body of the paystation is made of steel with a cast coin gauge. The AE dial is mounted within a cast metal shroud with a nice “daisy face” porcelain number ring. The wood strip mounted to the backboard is the central connection point for the different components of the paystation, the handset and wiring to the subset connect to it. This paystation is mounted to a 139a countertop mount.