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Thread: Vintage Elna 'automatic' 1958-60 sewing machine

  1. #1
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    I'm not sure how to post this to the sewing machine section.

    Yesterday, I brought home a little beige Elna automatic - she has a flat bed but under it is a free arm waiting for a plate - she is from the late 1950s or early 60s. She has Elna in BIG bold letters down the front right side. She hardly weighs anything, I think she will tote good. She only has one thin disc (a scallop stitch), one bobbin and one zigzag foot and a Necchi foot control with a new cord. I haven't gotten her to do the scallop consistently or zigzag at all - she seems to have simple settings yet I haven't gotten her dial combinations figured out. Does something hold the disc down? It seems to slide up the shaft. I wonder if she needs a zigzag disc to do zigzag. She does very nice straight stitches. She spins good and once I oiled her she purrs right along. She has very few nicks and scratches. She has an internal belt drive. I found discs on Ebay for an arm and a leg.

  2. #2
    Senior Member jtquilts's Avatar
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    I had a '53 model Elna for a graduation gift from high school in '66. I love my machine. . .wore it out! I seem to remember having to press down on the disc until it clicked then press the shaft to release. I think you need a zig zag disc to zig zag. It has been so long, thanks for bringing back the memories!

  3. #3
    Super Member twinkie's Avatar
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    We have an old Dressmaker that requires discs. This machine is a real workhorse but it is heavy. Was looking on E-Bay for
    a set of discs and they were expensive. But keep looking. We found a set that didn't tell what they were for (because the seller didn't know what they were for). My DH said they looked exactly like the set we had seen for the Dressmaker at a highly inflated price. The price was so cheap and the auction was going off in just a few minutes. Long story short (I know, it is too late) we purchased the set for $7.69 and it is the set for my machine. Perfect. Keep looking and good luck.

  4. #4
    Super Member irishrose's Avatar
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    My Elna is a little newer, but if you post a picture, I might be able to help you. I've never seen another machine with such a perfect stitch. Not a machine you want to make mistakes while sewing. It's too hard to rip out.

  5. #5
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    This machine does make a very nice stitch. I have the little zigzag arm completely out of the way then I slide a disc on. I'm thinking the disc slides up the shaft when I sew because it doesn't go low enough to clear the little bearing releases on the disc shaft. I've pushed it down as far as I can, I think. It must have to have a disc to zig zag. It is pretty simple to figure out otherwise. It sure is light weight.

  6. #6
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    I tried it again - you have to push very hard on the disc to make it go 'click'. It is a VERY nice machine - hardly weighs anything. This one would tote well. It has a great stitch!!! I'm pretty excited now that I have it figured out. It is missing the zigzag disc though, bummer.

  7. #7
    Power Poster CarrieAnne's Avatar
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    Maybe you can find one on ebay? Congrats!

  8. #8
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    There seem to be two kinds of single discs for the old Elna machines. One is flat across the top. The other is shorter but has a little raised rim around the top side. These are actually a hair taller than the flat discs. The slightly taller discs do not go down all the way below the little spring loaded bearings which have to pop out all the way to keep the disc from sliding up the disc shaft. I wonder, if it is possible to sand off a bit of the disc to make them fit.

  9. #9
    Super Member sewbizgirl's Avatar
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    You can post about your machine on the Vintage Sewing Machine Shop thread (VSMS) here:
    http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-43881-999.htm#3148176

    However, those folks are going to clammor for pictures!

  10. #10
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    I'm hoping I can get a picture to come up - not exactly sure how to do it on this computer.

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