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Assistance needed with 401- Please!

Assistance needed with 401- Please!

Old 08-27-2014, 07:37 AM
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Default Assistance needed with 401- Please!

I have my mother's 401 and got it out of the case to find the needle is stuck in the down position. The wheel will not turn, nothing will move.

Since this model is a wonderful machine, and I have cams, buttonhole attachment, specialty feet etc for it, I'd like to get it up and running. It is the second machine I learned on, after the Featherweight portable that she had.

As far as I know, it was working wonderfully the last time she used it. She's passed and I can't ask her anything about it.

Please let me know if any of you could, what steps should I take first? Do I loosen the needle and see if the bar will move up/down? I'm not sure where to start.

My local OSMG is not very good, nor is he very pleasant. The next closest dealer, who is great, is over an hour away and charges quite a lot to service a machine. I am hoping it's something simple that I could do.

Thanking in advance, for any assistance that can be offered.
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Old 08-27-2014, 07:51 AM
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Mine did that yesterday. Pull the square plastic cover over the bobbin case and raise the presser foot. If you have your manual check the trouble shooting page. You don't want to force the wheel. mine had thread caught.
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Old 08-27-2014, 08:02 AM
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If it was working when it was put away, time and old oil have gummed her up. Go to Sew-Classic, a bike shop, a hardware store and acquire a bottle of Tri-Flow oil a bottle of denatured alcohol and a tube of Singer or Tri-Flow grease.

Take the top off, take the nose piece off, take the bottom off, take the needle plate and slide plate off, pull the bobbin case out, remove the hand wheel and clean, clean, clean, clean. Once it's clean and freed up you can oil the dickens out of it with the Tri-Flow and grease the gears and the fiber gear on the hand wheel with Singer grease or the Tri-Flow grease, do not oil them.
I use the denatured alcohol with a tooth brush, q-tips, cotton balls or pieces of soft rag to clean everything that moves, and there is a lot that moves in those machines.

401s are oil hogs and need maintenance regularly. Without it they can gum up like yours.

Joe
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Old 08-27-2014, 08:10 AM
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OOps sorry wrong advice happened to my other singer. I do have a 401. Check your manual. Does it have thread in the needle? If so the thread maybe caught in bobbin case on some lint. May be all needs is cleaning. I love my 401. Got it at an estate sale. D
Originally Posted by tessagin View Post
Mine did that yesterday. Pull the square plastic cover over the bobbin case and raise the presser foot. If you have your manual check the trouble shooting page. You don't want to force the wheel. mine had thread caught.
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Old 08-27-2014, 08:54 AM
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I'd start off with oiling every hole I can find. Don't forget to take of the plates and look for thread . . . and oil in there also. 401s are oil drinking machines.
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Old 08-27-2014, 11:30 AM
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I bought a jammed-up 404 straight stitcher. It was quite baffling, because it would not move the slightest bit, at all. Turned out to be lint + rust in the bobbin case. Time + penetrating oil freed it up.
http://www.quiltingboard.com/vintage...e-t219903.html
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Old 08-27-2014, 12:16 PM
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http://www.quiltingboard.com/vintage...e-t216956.html

Here's another thread dealing with my 401 that got working after much assistance from the folks on this board. Keep us posted.
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Old 08-27-2014, 02:48 PM
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Originally Posted by J Miller View Post
If it was working when it was put away, time and old oil have gummed her up. Go to Sew-Classic, a bike shop, a hardware store and acquire a bottle of Tri-Flow oil a bottle of denatured alcohol and a tube of Singer or Tri-Flow grease.

Take the top off, take the nose piece off, take the bottom off, take the needle plate and slide plate off, pull the bobbin case out, remove the hand wheel and clean, clean, clean, clean. Once it's clean and freed up you can oil the dickens out of it with the Tri-Flow and grease the gears and the fiber gear on the hand wheel with Singer grease or the Tri-Flow grease, do not oil them.
I use the denatured alcohol with a tooth brush, q-tips, cotton balls or pieces of soft rag to clean everything that moves, and there is a lot that moves in those machines.

401s are oil hogs and need maintenance regularly. Without it they can gum up like yours.

Joe
Joe,
Thanks for all the above, I'll try your suggestions. But, what do I do to get the needle out so I can take the needle plate off etc? Or is it a process started with oiling/lubricating what I can and eventually the needle will move?
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Old 08-27-2014, 04:03 PM
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GEMRM,

Start by oiling everything. Loosen the needle clamp and see if the needle will fall down enough to wriggle it out. I've done that a couple of times.

Joe
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Old 08-28-2014, 03:18 PM
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OK, thanks Joe, will do.
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