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Thread: Featherweight Foot Control Question

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2010

    Featherweight Foot Control Question

    Hi all, I need some advice from you veteran vintage machine owners. I just got a new to me FW machine that is in very good condition. I also purchased an electronic foot controller for it. When I use the original bake light controller (with the little button), I have much better response from the machine, it seems to work very well but I would prefer it was re-wired with new wiring, I am also concerned with the heating up of this type of control. For these reasons I would prefer the electronic control.

    However, when I use the electronic control, there is a humming and delay when I depress the control, and I have to turn the hand wheel to get the machine to start sewing. This does not happen with the bake light, only the electronic controller.

    Do I need to tighten the belt a bit to be able to use the electronic controller? What is the best option for the foot control on these FW's? By the way, I am a quilter and use the FW for piecing mostly, which includes quite a bit of stopping and starting and also sewing slowly, which seems to make more heat with the bake light.

    Thank you in advance for any experience you can share,


  2. #2
    Super Member J Miller's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    NE Indiana

    More than likely you'll need to loosen the belt. A too tight belt will drag the motor down causing it to run slower and take more amps to turn. It only needs to be tight enough that it doesn't slip, no tighter.

    The old controller is functioning properly. It is a resistance type controller and it's normal for them to get warm. It's probably allowing more amps to the motor at the start than the electronic one. Hense the motor starts turning when you push on the button.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Thank you for replying - I did loosen the belt a bit and it helped.


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