My 1900 Walters Electrical post office Key (2006)

Some people know I'm fond of old stuff, it doesn't matter if they are old tools or like in this case a key.

One HAM heard I was collecting pieces of copper to make my own key, I wanted to make a replica of an old key like they used in the early days, because someone had passed away he got hold of an old key and gave it to me, not much was known about the key but it looked old, beaten up and there was no knob, some people would probably throw it away but it was perfect for me.

stamped with the PATT.1056a mark

After coming home from our clubhouse I went to the shack hoping to find more info, but not much could be found, I now know that the company that made it was Walters Electrical in England, but I can't find any info about them on the internet, the key probably was made around 1900 and indented for Telegraph use in a post office.(if someone has more info pse e-mail me)

On the internet I found a few pictures of similar keys, these were very important because I had to make a knob for it.

Since I have no lathe I have to do everything by hand (and abusing my drill to make something that looks decent).

After cleaning the key up somewhat and making a knob it looked like this and it was ready to be tested by a fellow HAM(PAoLCE) that lives about 50meters away from me, since he makes the most of his qso's in CW he was the perfect person to tell me if the key worked like it should.

the WE on the lever makes it clear that it's a Walters Electrical key

My 2 1/2 year old daughter saw the key and was drawn to it like a magnet.

Well after testing by PAoLCE he found out that the knob was too small and had not enough grip and worse, the return spring was too weak.

After many hours searching on the internet I began to realize that the knob I had seen in a picture on the internet probably was not original, so back to the shed in order to make another one, the problem was that I had no material to make the knob from, PAoLCE came up with the idea to saw of a piece of his hoe so we did(i'm not making this up), well this is the result of the second attempt to make a knob.

The spring is replaced and hopefully strong enough, this key is not intended to collect dust but to be used again and again.

[2009] they key has proven himselve to be an exelent key, even after 109 years this key works perfect and better than most modern keys

I have made many pictures of this key in case someone needs detail pictures just e-mail me.


another page that mentions the Walters key :