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Thread: treadle sewing machine

  1. #1
    Member Flour Sack Mama's Avatar
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    I think our home is about to become the adoptee of an antique treadle sewing machine. Should I try using it, even repairing it, etc. or just not touch it?

  2. #2
    Super Member valleyquiltermo's Avatar
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    Personally I would clean her up and do whatever it takes to get her sewing. Could you post a pic of her?
    I have 2, one my granny sewed on for 65 yrs and a red eye I need a cabinet for.

  3. #3
    Super Member virtualbernie's Avatar
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    Use it, use it! It's fun!

  4. #4
    Kas
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    Super Member Kas's Avatar
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    Treadling is so much fun! I think I am more addicted to the fixing up of them, though.

  5. #5
    Super Member GrannieAnnie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flour Sack Mama
    I think our home is about to become the adoptee of an antique treadle sewing machine. Should I try using it, even repairing it, etc. or just not touch it?
    I'm refinishing a cabinet, then I'll clean the machine I bought. I hope I can use it when I'm done.

  6. #6
    Super Member wvdek's Avatar
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    Clean it up and use it!

  7. #7
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    Use it! Would love one!!

  8. #8
    Senior Member pinkcastle's Avatar
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    I'd say use it as well. We're just starting to use ours but I've already had more pure fun sewing on it than I've ever had before (though I haven't started doing actual projects on it yet.) The sense of connection and the level of control give me a level of confidence that I've never had with another machine (this doesn't apply to my wife, however!)

    The other thing that I really enjoy is the rhythm. With an electric machine you start, stop, slow down, etc... instantly. That's fine but it feels somewhat herky-jerky to me. The treadle, on the other hand, rewards a steadier, more uniform pace - slowing and speeding up are OK but you don't want to let it stop - it's typically more than just a push of the foot to start up again - and it's easy to have it stop on you if you're going slowly and you aren't steady.

  9. #9
    Super Member frauhahn's Avatar
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    I love mine-they are practically indestructable! So-go for it!

  10. #10
    Senior Member pinkcastle's Avatar
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    One other note. For me, at least, the treadle machine has been far less frustrating. The tension adjustment on every other machine I've tried has been finicky (at best), but on the 9W it's been dead simple and very repeatable.

  11. #11
    Super Member DogHouseMom's Avatar
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    I've got one I just purchased a few weeks ago in a state of 1 large lump of metal and a dozen marked baggies full of parts with WD40 in them to soak.

    I am getting a kick out of the restoration part (so far - let's see how happy I am when I put said pieces back into said lump of metal!), but I'm doing it because I WANT to sew on it!!

    So jump in, restore and use it. If you really hate the treadle part see if you can motorize it.

  12. #12
    Member Flour Sack Mama's Avatar
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    Thank you for all of the good advice! I'll post a photo when it arrives. Sounds like it might be fun to fix up and eventually teach the kids how to use. Maybe it would be safer than electric for a beginner.

  13. #13
    Senior Member pinkcastle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flour Sack Mama
    Thank you for all of the good advice! I'll post a photo when it arrives. Sounds like it might be fun to fix up and eventually teach the kids how to use. Maybe it would be safer than electric for a beginner.
    Could well be safer. My wife once managed - I don't know how and she doesn't remember - to stitch through her thumb on her machine. Stopping to think about it, I don't know that I've sat down to it since - that really freaked me out. The treadle just seems much friendlier that way.

  14. #14
    Super Member Charlee's Avatar
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    With one exception, I won't have a machine that I can't use. The one exception is a treadle that I CAN use and choose not to because I'm afraid of ruining the decals, and since it's from 1876-1880, I figure she's earned a rest! ;)

    Clean it up and use it! The spousal unit and I are spending today working on a Davis treadle that we brought home yesterday...it's going to be so pretty when it's done, AND functional! :) The folks in the Vintage Machine Shop tell me there's not a better machine for binding...can't wait to be able to test that theory! :)
    Looking forward to seeing photos!!

  15. #15
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    Use it you'll love it!

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    I would definitely try it!

    Pat

  17. #17
    Super Member vintagemotif's Avatar
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    Use it!!!! I use all of my vintage ladies and gents. I rotate through my treadles, but I have my favorites that get used almost daily. Two of my 100 year old gals have been used to make baby quilts from start to finish.

    Excellent idea to teach the kids that you can recycle and use vintage items. I would love to see the projects that they make with your machine. Just post pictures in quilts made using vintage machines thread here on QB.

    Someone on the Vintage Sewing Machine Shop thread can help you if you need assistance.

    Have fun treadling!

  18. #18
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    I suggest you clean it up and use it. Check out Treadleon.com or other sites about cleaning and restoring old treadles without destroying the lovely gold decals. Warning- treadle rescue is addictive! I'm about to pick up a lovely White treadle in a 7 drawer cabinet this evening. The photo looks nice, so I hope it is as lovely in person. It will be nice to have one to use, since all my others need serious cleaning that I haven't gotten to. Treadles aren't fast, but they are relaxing once you get the rhythm down. Have fun!

  19. #19
    Super Member quilt addict's Avatar
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    Last month I finally got my first treadle up and running and have been using it almost daily. I would definatly get it out and use it. But be careful, as it is very addictive.

    There is lots of help here and on Treadleon.com. So don't be afraid you can't break them.

  20. #20
    Super Member jljack's Avatar
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    When I got mine together, I was thrilled!! My grandaughter fell in love with it immediately, and she (at 11 years old) was able to get 6 stitches out of it with her short little legs!! It is just so soothing to sit there and feel the rhythm of the machine turning away as I pump my feet.

  21. #21
    Super Member Jennifer22206's Avatar
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    oh you need to use it!! It'll be great!!

  22. #22
    Member Flour Sack Mama's Avatar
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    It's a Singer and as I understand per the serial number, etc. it was pretty common in its time. Seems to all be intact. We're going to try using it. Definitely going to keep it because it makes it special to have that connection a great grandmother we never knew.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  23. #23
    Super Member virtualbernie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flour Sack Mama
    It's a Singer and as I understand per the serial number, etc. it was pretty common in its time. Seems to all be intact. We're going to try using it. Definitely going to keep it because it makes it special to have that connection a great grandmother we never knew.
    Looks like you have a 66-1 Red Eye! I have one just like it in the same cabinet. You'll love it!

  24. #24
    Super Member thepolyparrot's Avatar
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    I would be ecstatic to find a Red Eye with decals in that good a condition! :)

    The 66 is behemoth - but it sews through anything. And what fun it is to be able to sew stitch by stitch - when you're applying lace, for instance, or sewing a "y" seam.

    Treadles are great fun - congratulations on getting one of your own! :)

  25. #25
    Senior Member dunngriffith's Avatar
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    They sew beautifully and are a joy to use.

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