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Thread: Need help with newly acquired treadle machine

  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Need help with newly acquired treadle machine

    Hi everyone. I'm new around here, but I'm looking for some specific help! I've been wanting a treadle to fix up and learn on for awhile, and I finally found one at a swap meet. The lady I was talking to had no real idea what she had on her hands, and said she didn't bring it with her, but as we were talking, it came up I was looking for one and she described it, then said she wanted 20 dollars for it. Needless to say I bought it sight unseen. Went to pick it up and was more than pleased with what I acquired. Here's what I know. It is a Davis Vertical Feed, serial number 3724713. Original cabinet and iron stand. It appears to have all the parts, but needs new belts. Everything moves and other than some dirt and dust, looks to be in really good condition. They had been in the process of refinishing the cabinet, but otherwise it is all as it originally was. Since I'm keeping it to learn to use, I'm not concerned about the cabinet, and I'll finish the restoration of it. here is a photo of the machine itself sitting on top of the cabinet:
    Name:  treadle.jpg
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    I can't seem to find any information as to the date of the machine, though I know it is before 1924, when Davis stopped making machines. The plate says nothing aside from the serial number and an image of a needle saying "USE THIS LENGTH NEEDLE". Does anyone know the following:
    1.) Date of machine
    2.) Where I can find needles, bobbins, belts for it
    3.) Appx retail value of the machine so I can add it to our insurance
    4.) Tips on cleaning it
    5.) Where to acquire a manual or instructions on how to use it.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Super Member Charlee's Avatar
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    Congrats Jenn! You got a great deal on a nice machine! Looks like the front plate is missing? Shouldn't be too much of a problem to find one.

    There are a couple of Yahoo groups for these old DVF machines, one of them is owned by our Jon! He should be able to help you with finding parts/pieces for it. There is a manual on the Davis Vertical Feed Yahoo group that should work for you, along with detailed instructions on how to clean these old girls up. (Don't use ANYTHING other than sewing machine oil on the outside of the machine, especially over the decals!)

    As for the value, to be able to add it to your insurance, I believe you would have to have it appraised by a professional.
    One day, you'll only be a memory for some people. Do your best to be a good one.

    http://charleeturner.blogspot.com

  3. #3
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    I do have the front plate. I thought it was missing, too, but when I started digging around in the cabinet I found it had fallen into the wooden undercover so I have it, its just not on the machine at the moment. That is what has the serial number on it. It looks like there are 2 shuttles in the cabinet drawers, along with a dozen or so other pieces, including some feet. I expected to need belts for just about any machine I found so I'm very excited that this is the only thing it really appears to need. Thanks for the info, I'm going to go stalk him for some help!

  4. #4
    Super Member jlhmnj's Avatar
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    Hi Jenn

    Your Davis was made in 1917 and uses a standard 15x1 needle. Belts and bobbins can be found on ebay or someone that deals with vintage/ antique parts and supply. You can get a manual copy from the Davis VF group: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/davis_vf/

    Good tutorials on the QB for cleaning and oiling and is also in manual (oiling). Don't remove faceplate unless your comfortable doing it as it's more complicated than the usual SM. You got a great deal and a great sewing machine. Good Luck

    Jon

  5. #5
    Super Member Caroline S's Avatar
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    Wonderful price, WOW. It is nice to see another Davis VF resurrected.
    Sweet Caroline

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlhmnj View Post
    Hi Jenn

    Your Davis was made in 1917 and uses a standard 15x1 needle. Belts and bobbins can be found on ebay or someone that deals with vintage/ antique parts and supply. You can get a manual copy from the Davis VF group: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/davis_vf/

    Good tutorials on the QB for cleaning and oiling and is also in manual (oiling). Don't remove faceplate unless your comfortable doing it as it's more complicated than the usual SM. You got a great deal and a great sewing machine. Good Luck

    Jon
    OOH THANK YOU!!!! I'm heading over to the yahoo group now! I was just looking a little closer on it and discovered a patent date of 1915 on the knob just above the needle, so I was guessing it was about 1916 or so. You have made my day! I don't plan to remove anything I don't have to, but I thought I'd read and learn as much as I could before I touch anything on it.

  7. #7
    Super Member nstitches4u's Avatar
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    Great deal on a great old machine. Congratulations!

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