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Thread: I finally found an affordable Featherweight (a bit long)

  1. #41
    Senior Member doll-lady's Avatar
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    what a great find. lucky.

  2. #42
    Senior Member
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    hesitate to say anything---but the people probably did know what they were doing. this machine has a bad case of "aluminum rot" from sitting in water or something like that.
    she can be saved, but with lots of scraping, sanding, etc. and will need a new paint job. the "guts" of these machines rarely have problems & it will sew well when cleaned, oiled, etc. but the outside may be an expensive problem. when you are done, you will still have a bargain machine. have fun with it !

  3. #43
    dragonflyxlx's Avatar
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    Great find congratulations. I have been thinking of investing in one of these little beauties myself. I have been checking thrift stores for a while, but nothing even sewing related where I live so far. Today hubby and I went to lunch at a favorite spot in a small town north of us, kind of famous for its little antique and collectible shops. We decided to stop in a shop that we used to frequent on the way home. I walked in and quickly spotted a familiar black box, in rather tattered shape. I opened it up to a familiar musty smell to find a forgotten little beauty inside. Sadly, the owner was firm at $325, and the sweet thing needs lots of TLC so I passed. You got a bargin, and it will purr again with TLC.

  4. #44
    Super Member roseOfsharon's Avatar
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    Congrats to you for your find and getting in, in time, to get it ! :)

  5. #45
    Senior Member cabinfever's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cinjosie
    What would one look for to determine that a machine is for sure a featherweight? I know they are always Singers and often come in a small case --- anything else?
    A FW is a model 221, and a Singer. There really weren't any others (to my knowledge) that had the flip-up hinged bed, except the 301; the big sister to the FW 221. The FW is smaller & was "THE" portable sewing machine of it's day, & still loved & used today. They were mostly black, with a more rare white or very pale green.
    Here is the link as to where the model # appears on the machine itself: http://www.singerco.com/support/model_number.html
    This link shows (near the bottom) that the FW was made from 1934 to 1946: http://www.ismacs.net/singer_sewing_...al_number.html I thought it was made a little later than that, but perhaps this page at Singer is focused on a certain date range.

    I got mine from a sewing friend who still owns at least 8 other FW's, & about 60 total machines, which she maintains herself.
    For those who want to maintain their own machine, a great help is to get the DVD "Those fantastic Featherweights" with David McCallum. Even though it is intended as everything you need to know to clean, maintain & restore a Singer 221 FW machine, you will really understand any of your old Singers. He also covers how to restore the old cases which may have developed a musty smell or replacing broken handles & latches; this DVD is 3 hours looooong & very thorough. He does talk about the 301 as well. You will find the locations for oil & grease (gears) shown in detail, and are common amongst most early Singers. Happy sewing on the oldies but goodies.

    The typical Black FW 221 with it's case, pedal & goodies
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    The rare white FW 221 with the green & white case.
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  6. #46
    Senior Member
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    What a beauty....just a diamond in the rough. Once you get her all spiffy, you will really love using this machine. I just complete 72 Friendship Album Blocks on my new baby (she arrived at Christmas, but I just NOW used her!!), and I have never enjoyed using a machine so much. Mine sews like a dream. I did notice that she got very hungry/thirsty for some oil half way through the marathon. So you may want to keep some oil handy.

    I finally named mine....MOLLY the Dream Machine.

    Congratulations on your fabulous find...just $20....those estate folks had no idea what they were looking at!!

    Now, go have a blast with your new baby!!

  7. #47
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    Wow, clean her up and she'll purr like a kitten.

  8. #48
    Power Poster
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    Congrats to you! As all the pictures I've seen on this board, your new baby will clean up nicely! Have fun with her!

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