Bel Air machines

Old 02-08-2017, 06:44 PM
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Default Bel Air machines

There's a Bel Air on CL that's been there for a while. I'm not sure that all Bel Airs are aluminum. I emailed them a couple of weeks ago and asked them what it weighed. They said they didn't have a bathroom scale. (It's not expensive, but pretty far away.)

Are they all aluminum? I need a machine to take to classes, and 301's don't come up all the time.

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Old 02-08-2017, 07:58 PM
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No, They aren't all aluminum. Have them check it with a magnet.
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Old 02-08-2017, 08:02 PM
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The Bel Air Bantams are 3/4 size machines.

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Old 02-09-2017, 08:43 AM
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The Singer 99 needle plate doesn't fit the BA Bantam - I tried! I think it would have worked if some corners were ground off, but can't quite remember now. The one in your picture has the same decals as mine, which is aluminum. It's a nice machine, but came with crumbled hinges, and one of the holes drilled in the machine body to accept the hinge pin was too small for the common replacement hinges. May have just been a one time error though.
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Old 02-10-2017, 04:35 AM
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I would try to get a 99K for taking to class. Sure it has some weight to it, but a machine trolley works great, and the stitches are great.
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Old 02-10-2017, 05:31 AM
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Originally Posted by MFord
with crumbled hinges, and one of the holes drilled in the machine body to accept the hinge pin was too small for the common replacement hinges.
Margaret, I don't understand what you are saying. What hinges? Do you mean those thingys on the back that attach the machine to the cabinet or carrying case? They did not work correctly?

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Old 02-10-2017, 05:41 PM
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Bkay, yes the hinges that connect the machine to it's base. I was told by Farmer John (from the Victorian Sweatshop forum) that the metal used was inferior to that used by Singer. I believe he said it had lots of zinc in it (?). Anyway, it tends to crumble over time, and most especially if the whole thing is dropped on the floor a few times. They are actually a standard size, but the replacements didn't work for me because one of the hinge-pin holes in the machine was drilled slightly small.

I just checked out my Bel Air Imperial, and it has the same problem. The hinge pins are broken right off. Not to mention, I can't get the faceplate to fit tightly and the tension doesn't work. I'm a newbie at fixing them and I just can't figure this out so am waiting until I can get some help on it.

My understanding is that the machines made in Occupied Japan aren't as good a quality as those made later. However, lots of people have the Bantam and just love it. Mine sews really well and it's light, but I haven't taken it anywhere as it needs a new base. Good luck in this journey!
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