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Thread: How much $ is it worth to fix a Featherweight?

  1. #1
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    I was given a Featherweight by my daughter's Spec Ed teacher. It sews beautifully BUT the bobbin was hard to get into and out of the bobbin case. So I took it in to my favorite repairman (family-owned shop for many years, I've bought at least 5 machines from them and take all my machines to them for service so I trust them). He ordered a new bobbin case but it didn't fit into the machine so he told me that somewhere through the years (it's a 1940) somebody replaced the hook mechanism with a non-standard part and it would need to be replaced at about $90 for that part and $65 for the new bobbin case plus labor. He suggested I just take the machine home and keep it for spare parts in case I find another 221. He didn't charge me anything for looking at it and sent back the new bobbin case since it didn't work for me.
    My question, is this too much to spend on fixing a Featherweight or does he just not love the little machines like we do? It seems to sew well with the old sticky bobbin case but will I do it damage by using it this way? It seems like more of an annoyance to me than anything but I don't want to cause major damage if that's a possibility.

  2. #2
    Senior Member laughingquilter's Avatar
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    You got the machine for free? I'd definitely find someone who specializes in them and get it fixed. It'd be worth it - they sew like a dream.

  3. #3
    Power Poster Lacelady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pam S
    I was given a Featherweight by my daughter's Spec Ed teacher. It sews beautifully BUT the bobbin was hard to get into and out of the bobbin case. So I took it in to my favorite repairman (family-owned shop for many years, I've bought at least 5 machines from them and take all my machines to them for service so I trust them). He ordered a new bobbin case but it didn't fit into the machine so he told me that somewhere through the years (it's a 1940) somebody replaced the hook mechanism with a non-standard part and it would need to be replaced at about $90 for that part and $65 for the new bobbin case plus labor. He suggested I just take the machine home and keep it for spare parts in case I find another 221. He didn't charge me anything for looking at it and sent back the new bobbin case since it didn't work for me.
    My question, is this too much to spend on fixing a Featherweight or does he just not love the little machines like we do? It seems to sew well with the old sticky bobbin case but will I do it damage by using it this way? It seems like more of an annoyance to me than anything but I don't want to cause major damage if that's a possibility.
    Consult Billy (Lostn51) he is our resident vintage guru.

  4. #4
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    I would do the same.
    Quote Originally Posted by laughingquilter
    You got the machine for free? I'd definitely find someone who specializes in them and get it fixed. It'd be worth it - they sew like a dream.

  5. #5
    Super Member ckcowl's Avatar
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    since new machines seem to start about $300 and go up into the thousands- i would put out the $$ to fix it- you already said it sews like a dream (unlike my $5000 machine)
    and once fixed it's value will only go up the older it gets---it is a win-win situation

  6. #6
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    Thanks, everybody. I didn't quite state the problem right. Not only is it hard to get the bobbin into the case, it's hard to seat the bobbin case into the machine. I did pm Billy and he also said that it is worth putting the money into fixing it. Not sure my repair guy really wanted to fool with it so I may take it to someone else. Maybe he hasn't worked on very many fws.

  7. #7
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    Hope u fix it!

  8. #8
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    I say it is worth finding the RIGHT repair person and get her fixed properly...

    my sister just went through this with her vintage VW...boiled down the repair guy did not know squat about VW's..so she had to find a new place to take it...runs great now...

  9. #9
    Power Poster sueisallaboutquilts's Avatar
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    Glad you got the word from Billy- he's a rascal at times but he knows machines :) lol
    I can't stop sewing on my FW- she's too much fun!! I just completed by fourth top on that little workhorse!!
    Good luck! :)

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by sueisallaboutquilts
    Glad you got the word from Billy- he's a rascal at times but he knows machines :) lol
    I can't stop sewing on my FW- she's too much fun!! I just completed by fourth top on that little workhorse!!
    Good luck! :)
    Yeah I am definitely a rascal!! :-P

    Billy

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