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Thread: Vintage Sewing Machine Shop.....Come on in and sit a spell

  1. #11631
    Super Member BoJangles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IT_Nana
    Hi Nancy,

    I'm amazed that the cabinets are so different but the machines look so similar, except yours is much shinier and your decals are pristine! What did you use to clean yours? Mine is dingy from years of being shut up in the cabinet, but I don't want to use something that would damage what remains of the decals.

    Also, where is your serial number? My Mom was born in 1918, and she was the first baby not born in a sod house, so possibly Grandma got the machine when they moved into the new house. It's all very interesting, isn't it!
    Yes, my friend's cabinet is yet another style too, but her machine looks just like ours!

    The serial number is on the base right behind where the arm starts up on a little brass type plate. You can see the serial number in the picture of the back of my Free on page 627.

    I used Blue Magic 12A TR3 Resin Glaze to clean and wax the machine, but don't go over the decals! I went around the decals with a Q tip. The TR3 is a car cleaner and wax, but Billy has a tutorial on cleaning the old machine here if you do a search.

    Yes, I love hearing the stories. My Mother was born in 1929 and I have no idea what treadle she learned to sew on. I know my grandmother had a treadle that Mom used, I have never found a picture of it -- I would love to have that treadle or just one like it if I knew what it was. You are very fortunate to not only know what your Grandmother used, but to actually have that machine!

    Nancy

    Here is Part 1 of Cleaning Your Vintage Machine by Billy our guru here! http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-45816-1.htm

  2. #11632
    Super Member BoJangles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cabbagepatchkid
    It was me :-D I was born a month late. This was back in the days when the doctor came to the house when you were sick (anyone else remember those days?). Anyway, because it didn't seem as if I would ever arrive my mother's doctor had her come to the office (in his house) so he could check her out with his new fangled x-ray machine :shock:

    He sat there and read the directions trying to figure out how to use it. After he took the x-ray and developed it, my mother took one look at it and exclaimed, "It has 3 HEADS!!!!" The doctor laughed and told her that there was only 1 head and 2 hip bones. Technology has come so-o-o far in just a couple of generations!!
    Geeze, you are lucky you didn't end up with 3 heads if that Dr didn't know how to use an X-ray machine! Wow, have we come a long way -- pretty amazing!

    Nancy

  3. #11633
    Junior Member IT_Nana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoJangles
    Quote Originally Posted by IT_Nana
    Hi Nancy,

    I'm amazed that the cabinets are so different but the machines look so similar, except yours is much shinier and your decals are pristine! What did you use to clean yours? Mine is dingy from years of being shut up in the cabinet, but I don't want to use something that would damage what remains of the decals.

    Also, where is your serial number? My Mom was born in 1918, and she was the first baby not born in a sod house, so possibly Grandma got the machine when they moved into the new house. It's all very interesting, isn't it!
    Yes, my friend's cabinet is yet another style too, but her machine looks just like ours!

    The serial number is on the base right behind where the arm starts up on a little brass type plate. You can see the serial number in the picture of the back of my Free on page 627.

    I used Blue Magic 12A TR3 Resin Glaze to clean and wax the machine, but don't go over the decals! I went around the decals with a Q tip. The TR3 is a car cleaner and wax, but Billy has a tutorial on cleaning the old machine here if you do a search.

    Yes, I love hearing the stories. My Mother was born in 1929 and I have no idea what treadle she learned to sew on. I know my grandmother had a treadle that Mom used, I have never found a picture of it -- I would love to have that treadle or just one like it if I knew what it was. You are very fortunate to not only know what your Grandmother used, but to actually have that machine!

    Nancy

    Here is Part 1 of Cleaning Your Vintage Machine by Billy our guru here! http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-45816-1.htm

    Thanks for the information, Nancy. I'm too tired tonight to read it all, but I will see if I can find that serial number. I've learned SO much since joining this board just a few months ago. There is a wealth of knowledge in these combined brains! :-)

    Kaye

  4. #11634
    Junior Member IT_Nana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IT_Nana
    Quote Originally Posted by BoJangles
    Quote Originally Posted by IT_Nana
    Hi Nancy,

    I'm amazed that the cabinets are so different but the machines look so similar, except yours is much shinier and your decals are pristine! What did you use to clean yours? Mine is dingy from years of being shut up in the cabinet, but I don't want to use something that would damage what remains of the decals.

    Also, where is your serial number? My Mom was born in 1918, and she was the first baby not born in a sod house, so possibly Grandma got the machine when they moved into the new house. It's all very interesting, isn't it!
    Yes, my friend's cabinet is yet another style too, but her machine looks just like ours!

    The serial number is on the base right behind where the arm starts up on a little brass type plate. You can see the serial number in the picture of the back of my Free on page 627.

    I used Blue Magic 12A TR3 Resin Glaze to clean and wax the machine, but don't go over the decals! I went around the decals with a Q tip. The TR3 is a car cleaner and wax, but Billy has a tutorial on cleaning the old machine here if you do a search.

    Yes, I love hearing the stories. My Mother was born in 1929 and I have no idea what treadle she learned to sew on. I know my grandmother had a treadle that Mom used, I have never found a picture of it -- I would love to have that treadle or just one like it if I knew what it was. You are very fortunate to not only know what your Grandmother used, but to actually have that machine!

    Nancy

    Here is Part 1 of Cleaning Your Vintage Machine by Billy our guru here! http://www.quiltingboard.com/t-45816-1.htm

    Thanks for the information, Nancy. I'm too tired tonight to read it all, but I will see if I can find that serial number. I've learned SO much since joining this board just a few months ago. There is a wealth of knowledge in these combined brains! :-)

    Kaye
    I found it! The serial number is 827313. Can we figure out the year from that?

  5. #11635
    Junior Member IT_Nana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vintagemotif
    Quote Originally Posted by IT_Nana
    I inherited my grandmother's sewing machine many years ago. I never knew her as she passed away at the age of 52 long before I was born. She and my grandpa homesteaded in northwestern Kansas and started their family in a sod house. As typical of many farm wives of that era, she sewed clothes for the entire family as well as raise a garden and chickens and cook huge meals for farm hands. I don't know how those women did it with none of the conveniences we have.

    Anyway, this sewing machine is a Free brand and still worked the last time I tried it. Just yesterday I re-arranged my sewing room/guest room and set it up rather than having it folded up with the machine inside. Do you have any idea how old this is? The drawers all work, but I know there is a front piece missing in the middle. I've looked and looked for that piece, and one time about 10 years ago found a machine like it in an antique shop, but we were 1,000 miles from home in a small car and no way to transport it.

    As you can see, this machine was very well used and well loved. My mother told me that her Mom gave it a fresh coat of varnish every year! My husband plans to refinish it...he said the wood should be very well preserved under all that varnish!

    I'd appreciate any info you can provide.

    ******

    I forgot to mention that Mom told me that my grandmother could look at a picture of a dress and cut a pattern to fit her daughters....very talented and creative. I wish I could have known her.
    Beautiful! Thanks for sharing your story. I love stories like this. Now that you have this gorgeous machine out, start using her. Your Grandma would be happy to see you using her machine for quilting. Have fun treadling!
    I'm going to clean her up and see how she sews. It's about time she got some TLC. ;-)

  6. #11636
    Super Member BoJangles's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IT_Nana
    I found it! The serial number is 827313. Can we figure out the year from that?
    Wow, I wonder if no letter means your machine is older or newer than mine? What does the slide plate say? There should be some dates on the slide plate. My last patent date is May, 1913.

    Nancy

  7. #11637
    Super Member HisPatchwork's Avatar
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    Thank you everyone for your help and encouragement! I am piecing my first quilt on my Singer treadle, born March 4, 1919. It just turned 92 and it sews wonderfully! I was able to wind the bobbin too, must have had something too tight before...good thing because the bobbin was a little bigger than the one for the Serata and wouldn't wind on it. I am a happy treadler now!

  8. #11638
    Junior Member IT_Nana's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoJangles
    Quote Originally Posted by IT_Nana
    I found it! The serial number is 827313. Can we figure out the year from that?
    Wow, I wonder if no letter means your machine is older or newer than mine? What does the slide plate say? There should be some dates on the slide plate. My last patent date is May, 1913.

    Nancy
    I can't find any other dates on it, but I need to take a flashlight and look underneith it. I'm not sure what you mean by the slide plate... Is it that round plate on the back that covers an opening into the machine? Mine is plain ... no dates.

  9. #11639
    Super Member sewbizgirl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirty1mom
    sewbizgirl, I just called the seller again to tell her I would stop in and look after work tonight. She told me she has a singer handcrank she will be listing soon $200.oo. I can't afford that right now.
    Agreed. That's too much money, unless it came in the big fancy parlor cabinet, with both machine and cabinet in pristine condition. Even then, it would still be too much for me. Good luck on the other one!

  10. #11640
    Super Member vintagemotif's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BoJangles
    Quote Originally Posted by cabbagepatchkid
    so he could check her out with his new fangled x-ray machine :shock:

    He sat there and read the directions trying to figure out how to use it.
    Geeze, you are lucky you didn't end up with 3 heads if that Dr didn't know how to use an X-ray machine! Wow, have we come a long way -- pretty amazing!

    Nancy
    Eeks! She got zapped with radiation while still in the womb!
    The question is how is her thyroid. I do hope you only got zapped once.

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