A Navyphone is a rugged type of telephone made specifically for shipboard applications using short-range circuits. For some time, the Royal Navy called these "loud-speaking telephones", but the word "navyphone" was coming into usage as early as 1902. They considered them as being slightly different to long-range telephones.
Navyphones varied considerably in their physical details, not all of them resembling a conventional telephone. Some resembled intercoms, and some were rather comical in appearance with trumpets or large horns in front or to be clopped over one's ears as though sharing a secret with a sunflower. Most were to be mounted on a bulkhead or other convenient vertical surface.
British navyphones were supplied by the Graham company, and identified like many tools of the Royal Navy: by Admiralty Pattern Numbers. Most were in watertight metal cases with receivers at the back with diaphragms facing the back of the instrument, projecting into trumpets which carried the sound out to the side. The transmitter was placed in front and could be revolved by hand although no clear description is offered of the plane of rotation.
They were most often battery-powered, initially, powered in pairs off six pattern 1453 cells in a pattern 1704 battery box until the Lord Nelson, Bellerophon and later classes in which they were powered by a motor generator.
Issues with rain, wind and spray were solved in 1907 by a "damp-proof" model (of unstated type; it was one of those compatible with motor generators, so perhaps 2140A) which was rigorously tested by pouring buckets over it and immersing them in water for 24 hours.
|Graham-type Loud Speaking Phones|
and Navyphones in British Service
|1639||upper deck areas||before 1902[Inference]||battery-powered|
open shutter to answer
|1643||engine room||before 1902[Inference]||battery-powered|
open shutter to answer
|1855||upper deck areas||1902||battery-powered, push-to-talk, external bell|
|1856||engine room||1902||battery-powered, external bell|
|1856A||engine room||1907||powered by battery or generator|
|2108||control positions||~1904||paired with 2109|
|2108A||control positions||fitted in some cabins in Dreadnought and later ships|
|2109||gun positions||~1905||paired with 2108|
|2109A||gun positions||fitted in some cabins in Dreadnought and later ships|
|2140A||upper deck areas||suitable for generator|
|860||fire control||Bellerophon class||similar to 2109A, but with a bell on top|
|861||fire control||Bellerophon class||no bell|
similar to 2108A w/portable receivers
|862||fire control||Bellerophon class||no bell, similar to 1856A|
works with 2108A
|863||general use||Bellerophon class||bell on top, similar to 2140A|
new shutter and push
|2461||general use||Lion and Orion classes||buzzer call-up|
|2461A||engine rooms||Lion and Orion classes||with bell contact|
replaces 2140A, 2108A, 2108B, 2109A, 863, 1856A
|2462||cabins||Lion and Orion classes||buzzer call-up|
|2463||TS||Lion and Orion classes||buzzer call-up|
|2464||Guns||Lion and Orion classes||buzzer call-up|
|2465||TS||Lion and Orion classes||transmitter only, buzzer call-up|
|2466||destroyer & exposed positions||Lion and Orion classes||buzzer call-up|
|3330||TS||Queen Elizabeth class||buzzer call-up|
|3331||gun positions, etc||Queen Elizabeth class||buzzer call-up|
|3332||TS||Queen Elizabeth class||buzzer call-up|
|3333||gun positions, etc||Queen Elizabeth class||buzzer call-up|
|3334||TS||Queen Elizabeth class||transmitter only, buzzer call-up|
- Annual Report of the Torpedo School, 1902. p. 60.
- Torpedo Drill Book, 1914, p. 263.
- Annual Report of the Torpedo School, 1907. pp. 74-5.
- H.M.S.O., London Torpedo Drill Book, 1905 (Corrected to December, 1904). Copy in Tony Lovell's library.
- H.M.S.O., London Torpedo Drill Book, 1908 (Corrected to December, 1907). Copy in Tony Lovell's library.
- H.M.S.O., London Torpedo Drill Book, 1912 (Corrected to April, 1912). Copy in Tony Lovell's library.
- H.M.S.O., London (1914). Torpedo Drill Book, 1914 (Corrected to May 15) Copy in Tony Lovell's library.
- H.M.S. Vernon. Annual Report of the Torpedo School, 1902. Copy 268 at The National Archives. ADM 189/22.