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Thread: Smell in vintage Singer 301

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    I bid on a Singer 301 on Ebay. It arrived in the mail today. A very pretty cream and tan machine. Seems to run good and looks great. However, it smells musty. I've had it on the porch all day but it still smells. On Ebay, it said it had been cleaned and serviced. They must have held their noses when they cleaned it or couldn't smell. Any suggestions on how to get rid of the smell. The case and the foot pedal all smell. Should I leave it open or put a box of baking soda in the case and close it for a few days. I'm open to suggestions. Just don't want to mess up the machine. Thanks

  2. #2
    Power Poster MamaBear61's Avatar
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    I know that when I worked at a car dealership if a trade vehicle had an offensive aroma we would put in a couple of dryer sheets and close the vehicle up and it usually worked wonders.

  3. #3
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    I found that if you leave the machine out it will eventually get rid of the smell, or I just got use to it. Now the case, I put dryer sheets, coffee beans, baking soda and no luck for me. hopefully someone else has a good idea.

  4. #4
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    I'm dealing with a similar problem with some books and magazines I bought used. Except that they seem to be saturated with cologne.

    I tried baking soda, but so far that hasn't helped. Now I have them packed up in a box with kitty litter and a charcoal block that I bought at Walmart for about $4. The box was sealed up today and I will let it sit like that for a few days.

    The charcoal may work well for you, and it won't put dust in the mechanical parts of the machine. With the books and magazines, that is not a concern, but I wouldn't use either the kitty litter or the baking soda with a machine. Of course, if you're thinking of putting the baking soda boxes in, but not sprinkling baking soda around the machine, that's not a problem.

    I sure hope you can get the smell out of the machine. Maybe you can return the machine - doesn't sound like they mentioned the odor in the ad.

  5. #5
    Super Member BeeNana's Avatar
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    Below is a recent topic that might have some valuable info for you and your machine.

    http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-74084-1.htm

    Besides changing the pad under the machine I have put a bar of the old 'safe guard' soap in the box (wrapped in a cut off stocking or in a sock).

  6. #6
    Super Member Aurora's Avatar
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    You might go to the Vintage Machine area and think about taking it apart and recleaning it as there might be something inside that is causing the smell. There might be a felt pad under the bottom of the machine that has absorbed something offensive. Just a thought.

  7. #7
    Junior Member
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    Thanks for the suggestions. For tonight and tomorrow, I'm gonna let it air out. Then tomorrow night, I will close it up with a box of baking soda and leave a couple of days. If that doesn't do it, then I will follow up with charcoal in the closed case for a couple of days. Then if that doesn't work, I'll try the bar of soap and close it in the case. Surely, one of those will work. Thanks for all of the suggestions. I got the machine for about $150 and it has a case (a little beat up), a large box of attachments and the machine is really pretty.

  8. #8
    Junior Member
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    Thanks so much to BeeNana and Aurora. I took the bottom off of the machine and there was a felt lining that stinks like crazy. It also felt a little moist. I have taken it out, left off the bottom and airing everything out for tonight in the garage. Hopefully, this will do it. I just need to find out where to order another felt bottom. Do any of you know a good store to order vintage parts from. I'll have to confess that I got into an Ebay frenzy and won three 301 machines in the last week. I didn't think I was bidding high enough to win all three but I did. I got two beige ones and one cream and beige one. Didn't get a manual with any of them but am going to buy one. I'm going to order the DVD about cleaning featherweights and 301s and do it myself. (I also bought a featherweight on Ebay in February - Billy is cleaning it now.) I need to stay away from Ebay (but it sure was fun).

  9. #9
    Super Member irishrose's Avatar
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    The first thing I would do is get rid of the case. When that old glue goes bad, there isn't much hope. For the machine, clean it with a good cleaner - I used Oxyclean - and replace the felt pads. April1930sshoppe.com has replacement parts. I didn't have to replace anything. AnnieRose came with a coating of cigarette smake - no odor. She cleaned up very well. I didn't get a case. AnnieRose travels in a wheeled case from JoAnn's. It's a little big, but it works.

    I'm having some trouble with a bentwood case on a Singer 128 that has a musty basement smell. Irish Spring soap seems to help.

    I downloaded a free manual for both machines from Sewclassic.com

  10. #10
    Power Poster CarrieAnne's Avatar
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    Lucky you! 3 of them....that had to be fun!

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