I had seen an old phone (one of the bedside touch tone phone that they switched to when they didnt want us using rotary phones anymore) turned into a slick looking iphone home on the web somewhere. When I saw this challenge I wanted to try making one. I found this challenge pretty late and couldn't find the kind of phone I wanted in any local resale shops, and I didnt have time to wait for ebay so I went up in my mom's barn loft and found this ....
I found two unlikely candidates....
I chose the princess phone on the left.
First I gutted the phone, which other than a LOT of dust was OMG *really* easier than I thought it would be. I expected it to all be riveted together, but it was mostly flathead screws. It made going alot easier than I expected. I then had to scrub the phone with nail polish remover. My little sister had tried to paint the phone with pink nail polish back in the 80s.
Second I painted the body of the phone and the body of the handset glossy black, and the little screw parts of the handset brass like the one I had seen online. Then I decided that I hated it. *thumbs up* It just didnt LOOK steampunk at ALL!!! It LOOKED vintage Hollywood, which while GORGEOUS in its own right, was NOT what I was going for.
So I then painted the body of the phone and the body of the handset hammered copper, the screw on parts of the handset shiny copper. I peeled the old leather off the bottom piece of the phone and painted it brass. I also took apart the button assembly, cleaned all the buttons with fingernail polish to get any nail polish splatter off them, and spray painted the button carriage brass.
I had a lot of trouble painting the phone. I tried to spray shellac is and it ate the paint off and I had to start over.
It was a LEARNING process!!!
While everything was drying I took apart a cell phone headset. I had to get a converter piece to make it work for an iphone. That piece is purple in the picture. When the handset was dry I threaded the headset through it. I glued the black cord in place so it couldn't get pulled too hard and shift everything inside, then I stuffed the inside with pillow stuffing and carefully screwed the handset screw pieces into place. I tried to glue the parts of the headset to screw parts, but then realized I couldn't screw them on after that. giggle. So I had to unglue them and rely on the stuffing to hold them up to the little holes in the screw parts.
I had SO much fun calling everyone I knew to try the handset out!!! It works AWESOME!!!!
While waiting for everything to dry I also cut three identical pieces of black felt. One piece of felt I glued to the bottom of the phone to protect whatever surface I put the phone down on. The other two I glued together and then glued to the inside of the bottom of the phone to protect my iphone when I put it inside.
I put the push button assembly back together and glued it to the top inside of the phone. Now I can push the buttons. They even pop back up after I push them down because I put the springs and everything back together.
They don't *DO* anything. I just like pushing the buttons.
After all the glue was dry I laid the iphone in the bottom of the phone and plugged it into the charger and closed it. It *does* ring while inside the phone, but I cant answer it without taking the top off. But once I answer it I can put the top back on and talk through the handset all I want. Its not what I really wanted, but its *really* cool for what I had to work with!!!
The little buttons in the cradle, and the little plastic for over the number place are missing. They were misplaced during the disassembly.
Doing this challenge I learned how to sprat paint plastic, how NOT to spray paint plastic, how to disassemble a phone, how to put a phone button assembly apart and together, how to take apart a headset (in this case I had to use a hammer), and how to solder (a wire came loose while I was threading the headset through the handset). I ALSO learned that it WILL be okay if I take things apart (it was discouraged in our house growing up), and that I CAN finish things and they *work*!!! I have disabilities that made it emotionally and mentally hard for me to finish this project, but I pushed through them and finished, and ENTERED!!!!
I couldn't have done this a year ago. I am *very* proud, even if its not exactly how I wanted it to be!!!
Next time I make an vintage iphone home I'll try wiring an actual hand set to a iphone head set plug like in this tutorial .... http://steampunkworkshop.com/articles/phone
so I can use the cool curly cord. But Im happy with my first effort. It WORKS!!!