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1930s Western Electric Scissor Action Extending Desk Telephone Shelf

1930s Western Electric Scissor Action Extending Desk Telephone Shelf

Western Electric

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1930s Western Electric Scissor Action Extending Desk Telephone Shelf

This 1930s Western Electric Scissor Action Extending Desk Telephone Shelf was very innovative when introduced. If you were lucky enough to own a phone in the 1930s, then you needed somewhere stylish to keep it. Western Electric came up with the ideal answer, which was their ‘G’ Clamp scissor action extending shelf, which you clamped to the desk or table. The industrial style was all the rage in the ‘Art Deco’ period and looks just as good, today, in the modern home! The scissor action is also known as an accordion arm.

You don't have to use it for your telephone, the shelf measures 10 x 6 inches; large enough for a cup of coffee and a cake!

According to my internet searches, the manufacturer of the device is Western Electric, however, there are no manufacturer’s marks on the shelf to confirm this.

It comprises:-

  • A Large Steel Telephone Shelf, with Bakelite pull knob
  • Steel Scissor Action Arm with brass rings
  • Steel rod connector (connects the shelf unit to the G clamp)
  • Steel G clamp and Tightening Screw

Rare to find one in such complete condition with all the component parts.

The enamelled scissor arm, clamp, and shelf have fairly good iron, black paintwork, with a some scuffs, scratches and rust. The steel arm, attaching the scissor action mechanism to the G clamp, is pitted and slightly rusty.  If you love the industrial look for your home décor then this is a must-have!

Approximate Dimensions

  • Shelf only
    • External Length: 25.8cm (10″)
    • Internal Length: 24.2cm
    • External Width: 16cm
    • Internal Width: 15cm (6″)
  • Device including Scissor Action arm
    • Scissor Action Mechanism Height only: 18cm (excluding Clamp and shelf)
    • Maximum Height: 47.2cm (tip of steel arm to ‘G’ clamp connection)
    • Folded length: 48cm, 18.9″ (including steel rod and shelf)
    • Extended length: 96cm, 38″ (including steel rod and shelf)
  • “G” Clamp Desk bracket
    • Max Width:-7cm
    • Length:- 11cm
    • Internal Height: 4.5cm (this represents the maximum thickness of desk which can be clamped)

Please click on the following links for more vintage telegraphy and architectural salvage.

According to Wikipedia:  

Western Electric Company (WE, WECo) was an American electrical engineering and manufacturing company that served as the primary supplier to AT&T from 1881 to 1996. The company was responsible for many technological innovations and seminal developments in industrial management. It also served as the purchasing agent for the member companies of the Bell System.

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