Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Just another Singer Model 66 Treadle Restoration

Here is another project that I just finished. Nothing fancy, just another classic Singer Treadle machine. I just love these machines. I was able to do this in 2 weeks. This included a complete table refinishing. Not my favorite thing to do, but I love it when it's done!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Singer 31-15 Industrial Machine, I think........

Here is a very old industrial machine that now sews some awsome stitches. Even though I couldn't find a serial number, It does appear to be a Singer 31-15.
It was in bad shape! The finish was chipped and repainted. A good clean and lube and this "Ugly Duckling" is sewing like a champ.

Sorry about the pictures. I hope you can see the great stitches here.

The first Singer Zigzag: Model 206

1953, Singer 206K
I will continue to research this Singer machine and although I called it a "Zigzag", originally, Singer called it a
"Swing Needle"  machine. The term "Zigzag" was coined at some point after it's introduction in 1937 but I don't know the details. The 206 was in a family of machines consisting of the 306 and the 319. I wish I knew more but I will continue to research this family of machines and post any new information.. This is the first "206"  I have come across. Originally, singer used their industrial bobbin case for these machines but changed it sometime before the end of production in 1953. The 206k, which is the only machine in this class that I have experience with, appears to be a work-horse of a machine. I hope I just have a "Lemon" because I had a horrible time getting this baby going. First of all, these machines use the 206X13 needle.
Next, way too many issues. The needlebar was at the wrong height. The needle was hitting the hook. I finally realized that the needlebar holder "hinge screw" was missing. What?

( Needlebar holder lined up but hinge screw missing at top)

I finally found a screw in South Dakota, wow.........Duane at http://www.singeroriginalvintageproducts.com/
had one.(Great Guy)  I really tried hard to fall in love with this machine. I finally got it sewing well with regular thread. The owner of this machine wants to use upholstry thread to sew horse blankets. I could not get it to sew consistently with the thick thread. It did show up with a new, aftermarket, bobbin case. I have no idea if it is the correct one for this machine.

Looks very similiar to a class 15 machine from this side except for the "Pfaff looking" zigzag width control.

It is hard to see from this picture but the needle swing bar controller is on the outside of the machine.

The motor, bobbin case and portable carrying case are all new to this machine. Someone had worked long and hard on this machine before I got it. I have now found out that some owners/techs are modifying these machines to work with the more traditional 15X1 needle. This causes additional problems. When you raise the needle bar to compensate for the longer needle, it throws the needle out of time with the hook, then when you advance the hook to compensate for this, it throws the hook out of time with the feed dog, which causes tension problems. Then, one must run the upper tension high to compensate for the loose stitches. Could this be the problem with the machine from the start? I couldn't get the owner to admit to anything.
This was an adventure and I do look forward to the next 206, 306, 319 Singer just for reference purposes.

And here is the rest of the story. Thank you Richard Beman.

Singer purchased he basic Pfaff #130 patent in the 1930's with the provision that it not be completely identical, hense the needle situation, The same fiasco occurred in 1956 when Singer was designing the #401 "Slant-O-Matic".. The cam-stack was a patent purchased from Bernina, another mechanism from the Italian firm Vigorelli and the Brother company was suing Singer. It's a wonder the machine was ever produced. It was ready for Christmas 1957 ( It amazes me when Ebay sellers tell prospective buyers it was made in 1951 )...