Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Another classic Sewing Machine, with a surprise!

As I continue my adventures in the sewing machine world, I thought I had learned quite a bit about some of the older machines. I was thrown for a loop on this one. Here we have what appears to be a classic "Class 15" Singer (15-88, Treadle) The fact that it didn't have "Reverse" got by me initally. It did have the upper tension on the face plate. When I went to check the bobbin case I was very surprised. What is this?

After some research, It appeared that I had a Singer Model 115 here. This is a full rotary hook unlike the "Oscillating hook" of the Class 15 machines. Wow, was I surprised! Unfortunately, the bobbin case itself was broken.

These old bobbin cases are virtually impossible to find. I did luck out and find some parts that did allow me to rebuild this original case and is now in working order.

So, here ya go. a 1918 Singer 115-1, treadle sewing machine with a full rotary hook, sporting the "Tiffany" or "Gingerbread" Decal set. These machines were made from 1912-1935. It sure looks like a 15-88 to me.

And I am never happy untill I get it sewing that perfect stitch.........


  1. Thank you thank you for this post! I've got the same machine and haven't been able to find a bobbin case for it! I still might not be able to find a bobbin case for it, but at least I know now what the model is. I thought it was a 15-30!

  2. I had to laugh when i saw this since I made the same mistake. I bought this same machine in a nice walnut treadle cabinet about 15 years ago for about 50 or 60 dollars. It was missing its bobbin case,but I figured that since it was a model 15, I could get a replacement easily. I was quite surprised when I went to put a bobbin case in.
    I found out that a Singer 20U bobbin case will work so I use that.

  3. Thanks for that Info TPtabby, I have no Idea what a 20U bobbin case is, but after a bit of research, I would assume it is a Singer Industrial bobbin case. There are 3 that I can find that are for a 20U machine. Help us out here. I have 3 part numbers. Bonnie Hunter would probably love to find a bobbin case for her machine. And I would love to be able to order one when I need one again. Since I no longer have those machines, I can't check and match cases to pictures in my catalog.

  4. I found my bobbin cases after doing a search for a replacement bobbin case for a Singer 115. The two I have from those searches were the bobbin cases for a Singer 20U, but they have no part number anywhere on them. I have a bit of trouble with them though. They sometimes rotate while sewing so the needle hits the outside of the case.
    Later, somebody off of Ebay sold me a bobbin case that was a little different - part number 105032 which is for a Singer 306W. This one seems to work and stays put better than the previous two bobbin cases did.
    I can take pictures, if you like.

  5. I just finished cleaning my Singer 115 Monday night, it was not functioning when got it. There was 2 mud dauber nests in the pillar, the hand wheel didn't move at all. Thankfully it has the bobbin case and 1 bobbin, had to swap out the face plate with one for a Singer 15-88. The original was so rusty that the tension assembly is rusted totally..
    I have been sewing scrappy log cabin blocks with it for the last 2 days.

  6. Hi,

    my name is allison and I have come across a Baer and Rempel phoenix from the early 1900's. I have everything working great on the machine....but it is a rotary hook wih no bobbin case and I just cannot for the life of me find any information on how the bobbin is meant to be thread.

    I've got some photos on my blog here

    I am so sorry to bother's just I have tried everything and I thought you might have some clues.

    many thanks,