Generators

The Ericsson generator is quite distinctive. It is a well-finished unit with an oil-cup at each end. Magnets were usually painted gloss black. Two- to six-magnet models were produced, with the 4 and 5-magnet models being the most common ones. The main gear wheel is 5-spoked and machined from sheet brass on the early models and white metal on the later (British) ones. On most wall phones, the crank is short and nickel plated, and screws onto a threaded extension of the generator shaft. The crank handle was grooved wood in earlier models, ebonite in the later models, and in the final models fluted bakelite was used. On the later British models, two of the feet have slots machined in them to allow them to fit into the smaller cases, and the magnets sit lower on the armature. There are minor variations in the smaller sizes for single cell and miniature cases, including squared-off magnets to fit the smaller cases.

Ericssons' magnet technology seems to have been more advanced than their United States competitors. Their magnets are generally smaller and more powerful, allowing them to use smaller cases and handsets. This had much to do with the quality of the iron ore used in Sweden, which was better than that available in the United States.

 

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