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

  1. #30741
    Senior Member Bennett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miriam View Post
    I think the lines between hobby and business ARE blurred. If it is to be a business, it needs some sort of organization to it or it could get out of hand and crazy. I have been looking at how to best tag a machine - what needs to go on a tag??? they come in and then I don't know what is going on in another month. I don't need to be looking them over more than once I guess. Some times I just don't have time to fool with something or don't have a certain part. I try to order parts all at once to save postage. Some times I take a day just to work on tensions that need to be torn down. That way I keep in practice. There are different types of tensions, too. I think there is just so much to learn about the machines. I doubt if anybody ever learns all of it. I've seen the repair man get stumped. I know the repair man knows basics and then has to look up what he doesn't know specific to a machine - too many odd machines out there aren't there.
    If you kept some kind of file card system, would that help? Maybe put a tag on the machine with an id number, then keep a note card(s) in a little file box with the info you have on the machine so far. You could keep track of the money and time you put into it, what parts you need, so on. You could keep pictures with it as well, save them after the machine has found a new home, and this could be filed under the machine type as a "manual of past problems" sort of thing. This could also be done with some type of database or spreadsheet on the computer if it got too big. (Yes, I actually like organizing and sorting things.)

    Bottom line, find something that works for you, how you process information, and that you'll actually use all the time.

    My Grammy used to keep spiral notebooks with all her antique/collectible plates in them. She had about 3 or 4 of them filled up (the family quit counting after going through 200 plates with tons more left to divvy up--I really hope I don't end up with that many VSMs). She'd put a little sticker with the number of the notebook and the page number on the plate. In the book, she'd write down what she paid for it, the date she bought it, information about the markings/decorations, and anything she could find on valuation with the reference where she found it. She kept this up for at least 20 years!
    I have a screw driver and YouTube--I can fix it!

  2. #30742
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    for me it needs to be very simple
    NEVER let a sewing machine know you are in a hurry.
    Success is not final. Failure is not fatal. It is the courage to continue that counts. Winston Churchill

  3. #30743
    Senior Member Bennett's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miriam View Post
    for me it needs to be very simple
    Another idea, make yourself a pre-printed checklist with the things you do/look over on each machine and pertinent information you need (like costs). That way you could check them off when done and wouldn't repeat doing things. You could leave space between each item so that you could make notes on problems. Keep that with the individual machine.

    Can you tell I have a list-making, writing-it-down personality?
    I have a screw driver and YouTube--I can fix it!

  4. #30744
    Super Member Charlee's Avatar
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    A note about patent dates on our machines. All these really tell us is that our machine was made AFTER that date...could be days, months, or years....the patent date is never for the whole machine, but is instead for some feature of the machine...anything from the take up lever to the spool pin....

    I think the W&W 9 came out in 1892...was produced until 1905 when Singer bought out W&W and to use up old parts manufactured the Singer W9, until about 1912.
    One day, you'll only be a memory for some people. Do your best to be a good one.

    http://charleeturner.blogspot.com

  5. #30745
    Super Member irishrose's Avatar
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    The foot control on my Emerson (Japanese machine made by Brother that looks like a Necchi with Art Deco trim) just died. It's an odd arrangement - a single cord comes out of the motor and intersects with a little box with spots for the machine and light (the machine has no light) to plug into. The foot control wired into box. If I can find a foot control from a donor machine, getting it attached will be tricky. The terminals are not screws, but tapped in looking things. Grrr.

    Question for those of you switching machines. Do you have any problems doing so? I have been sewing on a 301 and now have started using a 15 and I am off my drawn line. I've had to resew almost every one. Cure? Switch the 1/4" guide to the 15 and use the 301 for the snowball corners, I guess.

  6. #30746
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    Quote Originally Posted by tjradj View Post
    Here it is upon your request

    Hillary's quilt
    Attachment 139855
    My 8yr old grson is sitting with me, he saw your quilt "Awesome!" and my 10 yr old grdtr said I Love it!
    Darlene

  7. #30747
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
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    Irish Rose,

    The wiring set up you described is typical and common. Once you have the dead foot controller apart all you need to do is clip the wires close to the original connections and then attach them to the new screws on the replacement foot controller. I actually solder ring connections to the wires so I get a much cleaner and stronger connection.
    Foot controllers can be had at many places on line as well as your local dealer.

    I have over 20 machines to sew on. From ancient to almost modern. Each of them has their own personalities and quirks. So when switching from one to the other I usually sew a bit on some scrap to re-familiarize myself with the one I'm using.


    Joe

  8. #30748
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by irishrose View Post
    The foot control on my Emerson (Japanese machine made by Brother that looks like a Necchi with Art Deco trim) just died. It's an odd arrangement - a single cord comes out of the motor and intersects with a little box with spots for the machine and light (the machine has no light) to plug into. The foot control wired into box. If I can find a foot control from a donor machine, getting it attached will be tricky. The terminals are not screws, but tapped in looking things. Grrr.

    Question for those of you switching machines. Do you have any problems doing so? I have been sewing on a 301 and now have started using a 15 and I am off my drawn line. I've had to resew almost every one. Cure? Switch the 1/4" guide to the 15 and use the 301 for the snowball corners, I guess.

    You shouldn't switch machines while piecing. The 1/4" guide will vary from machine to machine because the needle placement on every machine will vary to the edge of the guide. Some will be too large, some dead on and some scant. It's always best to start a project on a machine and stick with it until finished piecing.

  9. #30749
    Super Member irishrose's Avatar
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    Duh, sort of like replacing the plug on a lamp only I will be replacing a foot controller. That's a relief. My capabilities don't include figuring out how to rewire the interesting arrangement further up. I'm afraid of electricity so I haven't learned much about it. Thank you for the info - now to find an inexpensive foot controller.

    Candace, I agree if I were doing all 1/4" seams. I set up the second machine because when sewing the snowball triangles, the guide screwed to the 301 gets in the way. This way I can do snowballs on one machine and nine patches on the other. I think I will switch them so I have the 301's increased visibility to find that line across the square. On the other hand, I just worked on a auction quilt with two other sewers. We had my 301, a plastic Singer maybe 20 years old and a fancy new machine whose 1/4" was set by pushing a button. Our blocks were all perfect when we put the quilt together.
    Last edited by irishrose; 02-12-2012 at 03:06 PM.

  10. #30750
    Super Member vintagemotif's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Candace View Post
    You shouldn't switch machines while piecing. The 1/4" guide will vary from machine to machine because the needle placement on every machine will vary to the edge of the guide. Some will be too large, some dead on and some scant. It's always best to start a project on a machine and stick with it until finished piecing.
    I agree! I learned this the hard way. So I took the blocks with one size and placed them on the front panel and the other larger blocks were used for the back panel to save that fiasco. I made myself a modern Hunter Star quilt.

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