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Thread: Old Machines, Quilting and wondering....

  1. #1
    Super Member ScubaK's Avatar
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    I'm looking on Craigslist all the time for stuff...
    I see the price of Featherweights have doubled, Treadles are about the same...there are some good Kenmores/Singers and such...
    But looking at these machines, the harp or throat size is so large. What a wonderful area to quilt.
    When did the harp/throat size get smaller? When things went "portable"?
    And the detail and painting on these machines? They can be compared to the fine details on a restored pin stripe car!!!
    I never knew the Feather Weights had different end plates...one was more solid and the other a fancy scrolled deal.
    How fun I have been having looking at the older machines...
    Any one have any info on any of them and where to look?
    Kirsten

  2. #2
    Super Member MollieSue's Avatar
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    Kirsten, I love looking through Craig's List too, at all the old machines!!

    Here's a couple of sites I was given:

    http://blog.sew-classic.com/2008/11/...ne-review.aspx

    http://needlebar.org/bb2/index.php
    :D

  3. #3
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    Go to the NeedleBar and have a look. Lots of really good information on the site and if you want to learn more about vintage and antique machines (treadle or electric) this is the place to go!!

    Here is the link:

    http://needlebar.org/main/index.html


    Billy

  4. #4
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    Diana beat me to it :lol:

    Billy

  5. #5
    Otterhound's Avatar
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    There is a great book called "Featherweight 221, the perfect portable" by Nancy Johnson-Srebro. It will explain all about the slight changes ove the years, how to care for them and how to figure out how old your machine is. I have 3 featherweights, a black one from 1948, a white one from 1962 and a tan one from around 1963. There were not to many white and tan machines made. The book also tells you where they were manufactured, some in the US, Cananda and Scotland. There were even a few free arm machines made, would love to have one, to rare and expensive for my budget. It really interesting to see the machnes and the difference between them. Good luck if you buy one, you will not be sorry.

  6. #6
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    The mint green ones were really rare also.

    Billy

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loretta
    How long were the featherweights made?
    The last allotted 221K's were Aug 6, 1968. A total of 360,000 of them made from 1947-1968. The 221's the last year was 1957 and there were a total of 1,750,041 made between 1933 till 1957.

    Billy

  8. #8
    Otterhound's Avatar
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    The featherweight was made from the 1930's (can't remember the exact year) until the late 1960's. The green machine which was mentioned is also known as the white featherweight. The machine is not real white and not really green, I have also heard it called celery color. If some one is trying to sell you a red or blue, have even seen purple on e-bay, these have been repainted. So be very careful!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Otterhound
    The green machine which was mentioned is also known as the white featherweight.
    It was actually the same green as the 185J and the white one was almost an appliance white. Look at Bebe's avatar hers is the appliance white color.

    The first US built 221 was allotted Oct 3, 1933

    Billy

  10. #10
    Super Member alaskasunshine's Avatar
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    I own 3 featherweights. My 1st one is a 1934, and she is with me right now here in Texas. She sews like a dream! I bought 2 more at a yard sale (they are sisters) I have not sewn with them yet. My 1934 (abby) has the beautiful scrolled plate. She has beautiful decals but the main part (flat) is dinged up like aomeone took a hammer to it. Crazy! They are lovely machines and I truely feel so blessed to own 1 much less 3. One evening I was sewing away and all of a sudden it wasn't budging and I was like holy crap what is happening to abby. Then a lady said when was the last time you oiled your machine? I giggled and several others said when was it? Are you serious I relpied? Hard way to find out I needed to oil it often. Now when she goes with me alomg comes her oil too.

    I agree if you do get one you will fall in love with them. I only know one lady that doesn't like hers. But she won't sell her either.

    Have a blessed Christmas!

  11. #11
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    Funny thing about the white machines they were the budget model lacking the bed decals and only had the Singer on the lamp.

    Billy

  12. #12
    Super Member Shemjo's Avatar
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    This is really interesting! I have a FW and a treadle. Take my FW to workshops and love it. Haven't sewn on the treadle yet.

  13. #13
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    All I ever use is my treadles, if I had to use an e-machine I wouldn't know how to act. :lol: Not that I do not own one I do but I just prefer my treadles over anything else.

    To me the older machines are made a lot better and are easier to work on and to use.

    Billy

  14. #14
    Otterhound's Avatar
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    Must agree, love my treadle. It was my Grandmother's (they only machine she ever owned) and it runs like a top. Also have a Pfaff Creative Vision, along with the 3 featherweights and several other machines. Something about the treadle that is special.

  15. #15
    Member Shandy's Avatar
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    Here's a very nice resource for researching vintage machines, especially treadles. www.treadleon.net. There is a mailing list as well. I've learned a lot from this site. I have a White treadle that I restored and 2 Featherweights, one a 221 and the other a 222-the freearm model. I also have 2 301's, one a tan shortbed and the other a black longbed. While I have a top of the line Janome, I really like to piece on the Featherweights or the 301's. The black one is just new to me. I've sewn on the tan one for several years. Love those mechanical machines!

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