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Thread: Talk to me please about reproduction hand cranks for Singer machines

  1. #1
    Member Tallbald's Avatar
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    Talk to me please about reproduction hand cranks for Singer machines

    Well we've assembled a little collection of vintage Singers that beg for a hand crank conversion (I'm convinced that's what they are asking for wink wink). Original Singer hand crank mechanisms in our parts are seemingly scarce, or command a premium price. I know there are reproduction cranks for sale but I read mixed reviews on fit, finish and other quality issues. If anyone here can offer guidance as to which brands they have had the best luck with I'd be grateful. I do remember back in the 80's when stationary woodworking tools really started coming in from the far east, many machines were identical because they were made in the same factories for different marketers, but the differences were the quality standards imposed by the importer. I wonder if this is true for reproduction hand cranks too? Thanks all. Don

  2. #2
    Super Member deplaylady's Avatar
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    I would love to know where to get the better (best?) hand cranks. The ones I have works great,really smooth, but I would love it if they looked more 'original'.

  3. #3
    Super Member jljack's Avatar
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    I got my reproduction crank on eBay, but I don't have a clue of it's origin. It is plain black, no label or anything. There are some out there with Chinese writing, but it can be painted over. The mechanism is fine...they work. The esthetics are a little off...they look a little rough. Nonetheless, they are what's available, and the originals are scarce as hen's teeth and very expensive!! If you want a handcrank, you will most likely have to take a less than perfect reproduction.

    Contact Lostn51, he usually gets some for sale made in Canada. Haven't seen them, so don't know how they are.

  4. #4
    Super Member cabbagepatchkid's Avatar
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    Sometimes you can find an old handcrank machine on Craigslist, for a really cheap price. Even if the machine is in really bad shape you can take the handcrank off of it and put it on your other machine. The reproduction cranks are sort of on the ugly side, if you ask me
    ~~Cathy~~

  5. #5
    Power Poster mighty's Avatar
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    There is a wonderful singer yahoo group that would probably be able to give you info. Also Billy lostn51 he is great.

  6. #6
    Senior Member gypsyquilter's Avatar
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    i'm looking for a vintage hand crank as well, saw one on ebay, but it sold for more than what I paid for the machine. I'll keep looking!

  7. #7
    Super Member jljack's Avatar
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    That's the trouble...the real vintage handcranks are few and far between. Lots of machines were made with handcranks, but were also made to take a motor later. When our country electrified in the 1930's, lots of people bought the motors and took off the handcranks and threw them away.

  8. #8
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    I bought two reproduction hand cranks from Cindy Peters at Stitches in Time. The finish is just so so, but they work smoothly. I keep saying I'm going to cover the chinese writing on them, but I haven't done it yet. Her prices are reasonable and she's a wealth of knowledge about vintage machines, especially the human-powered ones.

    Pam

  9. #9
    Muv
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    Senior Member Muv's Avatar
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    I would steer clear of reproductions, the ones I have come across are complete rubbish, but you never know, you might be luckier than me.

    Go to my Youtube channel (see below - sorry, since the board changes the link no longer works) and watch my video "How to Remove a Motor from a Vintage Machine". There you will see I show a genuine Singer handle and compare it with a reproduction. If you are interested in seeing that machine, I did a thread on it here called "Look at this Bobbin Winder." I have used the machine quite a lot recently - it sews beautifully.

    The market here in England is completely different. We are knee deep in hand machines and the easiest thing to do is get hold of a below average machine and massacre it for parts.

    Tallbald - please let me know when you finally do a conversion - I'd love to see the results.

  10. #10
    Member Tallbald's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone. After reading responses here I guess I really would not be happy with a repro hand crank, because of fit and finish, which means everything to me on any machine. I suppose I'll keep looking. Thanks again all. Don

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