Welcome to the Quilting Board!

Already a member? Login above
loginabove
OR
To post questions, help other quilters and reduce advertising (like the one on your left), join our quilting community. It's free!

Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: Can you tell me about a Singer 66?

  1. #1
    Super Member nanna-up-north's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    2,998

    Can you tell me about a Singer 66?

    I have an opportunity to buy a 1931 Singer model 66 but I'd like to ask those of you that have a 66 a little about them. I haven't seen it yet but the owner says everything moves and the decals are good.... flowers and leaves she thought. I can go see it before I decide but I need to know what to check out..... probably won't be able to plug it in because it is in a storage unit.

    So, I tried to do a little research on eBay to see what the 66 looks like. I see it has a round bobbin. Do you know if more bobbins will be difficult to find? Does anyone know the number of the bobbin?

    This one has a motor (singer) and light.

    Does the 66 use the standard 15-1 size needle?

    Are there any special advantages to having the 66? Some of the eBay listings say industrial.... were they? Would this machine sew several layers of jean fabric, for example?

    There are no attachments with this machine and no cabinet. I saw one on eBay for $39 with no bids. Would that price be too much for a 66 with no attachments or cabinet?

    Okay, there are so many experts out there with these machines.... You have all inspired me to find these beauties but I'm new at the hunt and am willing to listen and learn.

    Thanks, nanna-up-north

  2. #2
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    NE Indiana
    Posts
    8,105
    The Singer model 66 is a good solid stout machine but it is not an industrial by any means.
    The early ones used a round knob to control the stitch length. It has no reference marks. The later ones had a stitch length lever with reference marks and a back tacker.

    It uses the Class 66 steel bobbins. They are quite common. You can find them most anywhere.
    It uses the common 15x1 needle.
    It uses the regular low shank feet avail lots of places.

    Advantages, beats me, I have 5 of them. 2 treadles, 3 electric. They sew beautiful straight stitches.
    They are very durable and trouble free. Just feed 'em some oil and they're happy.
    I really can't think of any fragile or troublesome parts to them.

    Since you can't test run it I'd check it to be sure it's free turning, then check the wiring and if all is well I think I'd try to get it for $25.00 or so.

    JMHO

    Joe

  3. #3
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    NE Indiana
    Posts
    8,105
    PS: Mine will walk through 4 layers of denim like it was light weight cotton. One of the electrics went through 8 layers and didn't break a sweat. Not industrial but not wimps either.

    Joe

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    138
    Nanna, Joe has already answered most of your questions; as for this one,

    "Would this machine sew several layers of jean fabric, for example?"

    Imagine I told you I'm buying a used Chevy, and asked you "Will I be able to drive this up a hill?" Your answer woud likely be "Well, it depends on the condition it's in." If the machine is ship-shape, no problem. If it's rusted and the motor is burnt out, perhaps not. Best thing is to test it out yourself before you spend any money.
    - Rain

    Vintage Singer Sewing Machine Blog
    http://vssmb.blogspot.com/

  5. #5
    Super Member nanna-up-north's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    2,998
    Thanks Joe, and Vintage Singers NYC, You are right. It's condition, condition, condition as always. I guess I should at least go look at it. I don't think the seller will part with it for $25 but all I can do is ask. Without attachments or a manual or the ability to plug it in and give it a test drive, it's probably not worth any more than that.

  6. #6
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Central NJ
    Posts
    4,623
    I just picked one up a couple of weeks ago. It runs but that's really about all I know. If the seller says flowers and leaves I'm thinking redeye??? The one I picked up is! I got it in a cabinet, it's electric; does have a manual and honestly haven't had a chance to check for accessories. But paid $50 and was happy to do so. It will fit it the restored cabinet that was my g-grandmothers. She needs cleaned up a bit but everything was moving freely so to me it was worth it. Hopefully this week I'll get to play with her.

  7. #7
    Super Member barri1's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Woodmere, NY
    Posts
    1,420
    I love my 66.. It is so user friendly.. I paid $60 at an estate sale.. I probaly paid too much, but she was in working condition, had a bunch of stuff in her cabinet, and I'm not disapointed.. She loves to be oiled, and she sings with pleasure.. I would use her exclusively, but I also have a 99 .. She doesn't do zig zag, and occasionally I like to do applique.. I'll get over it..

  8. #8
    Super Member nanna-up-north's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    2,998
    So, can you drop the feed dogs on a 66?

  9. #9
    Super Member kydeb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    1,075
    I think your questions have been answered. I piece exclusively on 66s - a 1948 model and a 1914 Red Eye Treadle. I love them both! Simple and, as someone already said, all I've had to do is feed them oil!
    Debbie in Kentucky
    kydeb.wordpress.com

  10. #10
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    NE Indiana
    Posts
    8,105
    Quote Originally Posted by nanna-up-north View Post
    So, can you drop the feed dogs on a 66?
    No. If you want to FMQ or darn you'll have to use a plate over the feed dogs.

    Joe

  11. #11
    Super Member nanna-up-north's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    2,998
    Thanks again, Joe. I'll keep you all posted... will probably check it out this week.

  12. #12
    Super Member purplefiend's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Round Rock,Texas
    Posts
    6,155
    Quote Originally Posted by nanna-up-north View Post
    So, can you drop the feed dogs on a 66?
    Its not absolutely necessary to drop the feed dogs for FMQ, sometimes I get better results when I leave them up.
    Sharon W

  13. #13
    Super Member nanna-up-north's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    2,998
    Quote Originally Posted by purplefiend View Post
    Its not absolutely necessary to drop the feed dogs for FMQ, sometimes I get better results when I leave them up.
    Sharon W
    So how does that work? Do you set the stitch length at 0 so the feed dog doesn't move? I've never FMQ without dropping the feed dog or putting a cover over them.

  14. #14
    Super Member purplefiend's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Round Rock,Texas
    Posts
    6,155
    Quote Originally Posted by nanna-up-north View Post
    So how does that work? Do you set the stitch length at 0 so the feed dog doesn't move? I've never FMQ without dropping the feed dog or putting a cover over them.
    I set the stitch length to zero and quilt. I use a 15-90 or a 237 treadle to FMQ, usually just baby quilt size. Anything bigger I use my Viking Sapphire875.
    Sharon W

  15. #15
    Super Member nanna-up-north's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    2,998
    Quote Originally Posted by purplefiend View Post
    I set the stitch length to zero and quilt. I use a 15-90 or a 237 treadle to FMQ, usually just baby quilt size. Anything bigger I use my Viking Sapphire875.
    Sharon W
    Good to know. I've not tried it that way, always thought the fabric would snag moving over the feed dog. But, I'll try it. Thanks for the info.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Skyangel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    817
    Flowers and leaves sounds like filligree decals? My cousin gave me our grandmother's 1928 66-6 about six months ago and I haven't done anything to it yet. The handwheel won't turn so it is going to take some freeing up which I will do in warm weather outside. It has the screw for the stitch legnth adjustment, no reverse, and an non-numbered tension dial. Pretty basic. But the 66 started life as a treadle, it was in the 20s they started putting electric motors on them. I didn't have any attachments or manual, but I researched and found the exact number attachment box and found a set on ebay, and an original manual.

    Finding this machine really cleared up a mystery. My Grandfather bought it for my Grandmother when my Mom was born. It was in a Number 40 cabinet. My GF died when my my mom was 3, and raising 2 kids in the depression, the sewing machine was one of the few things that my GM didn't sell. Somewhere along the line, probably late 40s, my GM gave it to my mom when she started having kids. Around the time I was born, my Mom bought a 401 and put it in the cabinet. I learned to sew on the 401 but my Mom said the cabinet originally had an "old black machine" but she didn't remember what happened to it. My mom still has the 401 in the cabinet but hasn't used it since the 70s when knits came out (she bought a Kenmore that still sits on top of the closed cabinet). Now, the 66-6, well, it turned up at my cousins when I asked to see the Featherweight she had recently inherited from her mother. I figured out that when my Mom bought the 401, the dealer put the 66 in a portable case and she gave it back to my GM. The case is the maroon and cream that I think dates to the 50s. I doubt she ever used it again as I remember she used to occasionally mend something on my Mom's machine. But she kept it and my Uncle had some of her stuff still in storage when he died.

    The 401 and cabinet is promised to me and one day I will put the 66-6 back where it belongs. Hopefully I will find an original case I can put the 401 into.

    Kim

  17. #17
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    NE Indiana
    Posts
    8,105
    Kim,

    Don't wait till later to work on the old 66. Go to your local SMG and buy several bottles of SM oil, then hit a Dollar General store or Wal Mart and get a medium sized cat litter box or similar tray. Set the machine in it and pull off all the plates. Then start hosing it with oil. SM oil doesn't stink and it can work as the machine waits on you.

    It won't take much to free it up, no doubt it's just dried and gummed up oil that got it stuck.

    Great story, I'd try to get the cabinet from her sooner than later to put the 66 back in. But that's just me.

    Joe

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.