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Thread: thick grease built up on old sewing machine

  1. #1
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    thick grease built up on old sewing machine

    Hi there!
    About two years ago, I bought a Kenmore 21 sewing machine off eBay. It has worked great, but just recently I noticed a build-up of gooey black grease on the back of the machine, just behind the hand wheel and near the motor/belts, etc.
    Any thoughts on the cause? I am wondering if the machine was oiled with something gnarly and if I need to get it cleaned out, or if this is more or less normal.
    Thanks for any input!

  2. #2
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
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    msulliv3,

    Welcome to the forum.

    Any build of grease or old oil should be removed if for no other reason than to keep the machine clean. Keeps your hands clean and your work too.

    I'm not familiar with the Kenmore 21s, but I'd start carefully with sewing machine oil and cotton balls or a clean flannel cloth. Avoid strong chemicals such as those found Simple Green, 409, Go Jo, Gunk or others.
    They can damage certain finishes and decals too.

    Joe

  3. #3
    Super Member Mitch's mom's Avatar
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    Is it belt dust from the belts wearing? It may be time to replace the belts. Nothing lasts forever.

  4. #4
    Super Member kitsykeel's Avatar
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    I recently purchased a Domestic 935. Lovely machine and clean everywhere except around the handwheel. When I took it apart to clean I couldn't believe what someone had done. Thick black grease on the handwheel and the belt. Had to clean it all out (what a job that was since it was so thick) and buy a new belt. I used Goo Gone Extra to desolve the grease. It works just fine now.

    Kitsykeel
    Kitsy

  5. #5
    Super Member ThayerRags's Avatar
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    Remember the days when you could buy a tube of “Belt Dressing”? It was a tar-like substance that you could rub onto an old belt, especially one that was slipping, to “rejuvenate” it and save the cost of a new belt......

    CD in Oklahoma
    "I sew, I sew, so it's off to work I go!!!"
    ThayerRags Fabric Center
    http://thayerrags.com/

  6. #6
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThayerRags View Post
    Remember the days when you could buy a tube of “Belt Dressing”? It was a tar-like substance that you could rub onto an old belt, especially one that was slipping, to “rejuvenate” it and save the cost of a new belt......

    CD in Oklahoma
    I'd forgotten about that stuff. Used to see it in auto parts stores. I tried it once but didn't have much success with it. Never occurred to me someone might use it on a sewing machine belt.

    Joe

  7. #7
    sap
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    Hand soap will work to dress an old belt too.

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