30th Infantry Division

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EE-8 Field Telephone Troubleshooting

This is a quick procedure for troubleshooting your EE-8 field telephone. The phones take a pair of standard D cell batteries. I recommend rechargeable batteries or you'll go through a small fortune replacing them.
  1. Hook two phones together with standard two strand communication wire. Turn the crank and you should hear the other phone ring, even without batteries in (you just need the batteries to talk). If it doesn't ring you could have bad wires, corroded connections, or a bad ringer. The phones are pretty simple and rugged, so chances are it's just corrosion. Which brings us to the next point...
  2. Clean all the connections. This is usually the problem with most phones. Take a little steel wool to all connections--battery, pull the handset and do the posts and leads, and pull the microphone and speaker out of the handset and hit those too.
  3. If it still doesn't work, then it's time to put some serious work into troubleshooting. You'll need two good phones in order to test. If your handset doesn't work at all, take one from a known good phone and hook it up, then test it out with the other good phone. If it still doesn't work, then there are probably bad connections on the base. Try buffing out the posts again with steel wool. If it does work, you know the handset is bad and you can just get a new one.
  4. If you can hear but not talk on your phone, swap out just the mic and not the whole handset. If the handset then works, you know you have a bad mic. Do the same for the ear piece if that doesn't work.
  5. If you put a good ear piece and mic into the handset and it still doesn't want to cooperate, you probably have a short somewhere in the line. You can either get a new handset or try replacing the wire. Bart from the 4th Division recommends taking a black power cord from a computer to use as a replacement. Solder new leads on it, make sure you know where each wire is going so you can hook them up properly, and you're good to go. It's more work than buying a replacement handset, but it's cheaper. If you're like me, you have too many power cords sitting around anyway.
  6. Last item: where to get replacement parts. Fair Radio Sales has the goods you're looking for. I haven't found any ear pieces, but they have microphones and replacement hand sets. Do searches for EE-8 and/or TS-9 to find the parts.