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Thread: Hand crank machine questions

  1. #1
    Super Member kiffie2413's Avatar
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    Hand crank machine questions

    Hi all,
    Often I am wanting to have the option for portability when doing my straight stitch sewing, as in piecing my quilts. I would rather have one that is not electric.
    I've been researching hand crank machines for some time, but I just don't know enough about them...
    Can I get some feedback as to what you all think about them, what brand and model would be good to check out?

    I have several vintage machines, including my great grandmother's Singer 66 treadle in its original cabinet. Ma did have an electric motor added to the machine as well.
    But I'm thinking a machine that is not as heavy would be a better way to go.

    Thanks in advance!
    Kif
    Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest~Mark Twain

  2. #2
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    I wanted a hand crank,nso I found one on ebay It is a singer 201 I have a singer 201 so I knew it was a good one I paid 500. for it It is very heavy. I I have a featherweight but when I sew I want all the stitches so for going to sew in I bought brother cs6000.very light weight does everything my brother8500 pacesetter does I know it won't last as long but it only cost 139. + shipping from amazon.

  3. #3
    Super Member KalamaQuilts's Avatar
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    I hear ya sister!

    I have a Singer 127 hand crank, gorgeous machine, lovely to sit on the deck in the summer and use.
    But my husband has taken up flyfishing and we go to such pretty places, so I thought 'Hey...take the hand crank!"
    It works..but I have to take a table also, and it is Really heavy, and I don't like the bentwood case getting banged up

    So I thought and thought...And I've bought a Singer Sewhandy 20 chainstitch machine. Quite light, about the size of a small loaf of bread, no bobbin to fool with, just stick a spool of thread on the spindle and off you go.

    Singer made these for many years, and variously advertised them as toys, machines to take to college, portable machines for many uses. I'm thrilled to start using it

    It makes a chain stitch, which looks like a crochet chain on the back side of the fabric. It can all pull out if the stitcher is careless, but as anyone who crochets knows it is easy to loop off a chain, the machine chain is no different.

    Anyway it will make a nice change from english paper piecing,

  4. #4
    Super Member Rodney's Avatar
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    Congrats on finding your chain stitcher.
    Rodney
    "Neglect to oil the machine will shorten its life and cause you

    trouble and annoyance" Quote from Singer Model 99 Manual

  5. #5
    Senior Member sdhaevrsi's Avatar
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    Kalama Quilts, congrats on your SewHandy! The chain stitching sounds interesting, and not needing a bobbin would be super! Any pictures of it? Do you worry about a broken stitch unraveling on your piecing?

    P.S. I am still so happy with my 301, Kallie. :-D
    ​Sheri

  6. #6
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    If you have a featherweight,hand crank additions can be added. They don't weigh much.
    Life may not be the party we planned for,but while we are here we should dance!

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    Quote Originally Posted by KalamaQuilts View Post
    I hear ya sister!

    I have a Singer 127 hand crank, gorgeous machine, lovely to sit on the deck in the summer and use.
    But my husband has taken up flyfishing and we go to such pretty places, so I thought 'Hey...take the hand crank!"
    It works..but I have to take a table also, and it is Really heavy, and I don't like the bentwood case getting banged up

    So I thought and thought...And I've bought a Singer Sewhandy 20 chainstitch machine. Quite light, about the size of a small loaf of bread, no bobbin to fool with, just stick a spool of thread on the spindle and off you go.

    Singer made these for many years, and variously advertised them as toys, machines to take to college, portable machines for many uses. I'm thrilled to start using it

    It makes a chain stitch, which looks like a crochet chain on the back side of the fabric. It can all pull out if the stitcher is careless, but as anyone who crochets knows it is easy to loop off a chain, the machine chain is no different.

    Anyway it will make a nice change from english paper piecing,
    I have a Sew Handy 20 but it needs to be anchored down to something. Mine came with a mechanism for attaching to a table. Is that the way yours works.

  8. #8
    Super Member KalamaQuilts's Avatar
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    They came with C clamps, and some came with little suitcases that turned into table top tables.

    What I'd really like is to have Rodney make me a base...but I'm still thinking on ideas for stability.
    a tray with a heavy duty suction cup on the machine also comes to mind. I've collected images of a lot of ideas but can't share them here as they would be deleted as not mine.

    I have my Sewhandy project lined out in my mind also. So if the work is successful I'll start a thread then.

  9. #9
    Super Member kiffie2413's Avatar
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    Thank you all for the input!
    Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest~Mark Twain

  10. #10
    Super Member purplefiend's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by francie yuhas View Post
    If you have a featherweight,hand crank additions can be added. They don't weigh much.
    Yeah but you only get 1 stitch per revolution verses 3 stitches for a real hand crank.
    Sharon

  11. #11
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    I've also been thinking of adding a hand crank machine to my collection. I have a Singer 201 hand crank, but like you say, they weigh a ton. I'm looking for a lighter weight machine and wouldn't it be nice if it had a zig zag! The only Singer I can think of is the Genie, but can that take a hand crank? Another choice might be an aluminum Singer 201. Has anyone seen a Singer 301 with a hand crank? Maybe a Singer 99 (but no zig zag)?

    It would be helpful if people could tell us what hand crank machines they have and how they like them.

  12. #12
    Super Member kiffie2413's Avatar
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    As far as vintage machines, I have 2 featherweights, but I will be selling one. I also have a Singer 66, Singer 301A, and a Minnesota Rotary.
    But I think, well actually I'm pretty sure, me trying to make any of them into a hand crank is not a good idea.
    I'm looking into a Sewhandy, just need to find one that works...
    Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest~Mark Twain

  13. #13
    Junior Member sjdal's Avatar
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    I have a beautiful Singer 99 for this purpose. It is the 3/4 size of the 66. It is heavy enough to stay still on the table, but also easy to transport. Depending on condition, not very expensive.

  14. #14
    Super Member kiffie2413's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sjdal View Post
    I have a beautiful Singer 99 for this purpose. It is the 3/4 size of the 66. It is heavy enough to stay still on the table, but also easy to transport. Depending on condition, not very expensive.
    Did you buy your 99 as a hand crank, or did you add the hand crank?
    Thank you for your help!
    Kif
    Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest~Mark Twain

  15. #15
    Super Member kiffie2413's Avatar
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    Well I found a Singer Sewhandy one owner machine being sold by the original owner's daughter. It's in amazing condition, and has everything with it including the original box. I debated and debated, and then I bought it. The original owner aspect helped "seal the deal".
    Can't wait to get it here!!
    Kif
    Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest~Mark Twain

  16. #16
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    I have a pretty large selection of handcranks. I prefer them to treadles and electrics. I do most of my work on the Jones.

    American #7
    Singer 128
    Wheeler & Wilson #8
    New Ideal
    Jones Serpentine (My Personal Fav)
    Frister & Rossman E (Heathers)
    Pfaff Model F (Convertible Treadle-Handcrank)

  17. #17
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    My handcrank collection increased by one today - though the actual wood handcrank broke off during transit. Praise be that the only damage is rather easily fixed - considering that this seller believed double boxing meant put the machine in a small box and put the small box in a bigger box and send it across country! This is the style with the cast base - amazed that showed up the correct number of pieces!

    I've got the Singer 66
    Singer 24
    Singer 28
    Kohler
    Wheeler Wilson #9
    and New National (made by New Home)


    BTW - Steve, did you get a few of your numbers wrong? Or did you "lose" something?
    My name is Cathy - and I'm addicted to old sewing machines and their attachments.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macybaby View Post
    ...BTW - Steve, did you get a few of your numbers wrong? Or did you "lose" something?
    Oops, forgot the W&W #9 Handcrank

  19. #19
    Super Member ThayerRags's Avatar
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    Oh goodie, I can play this game. I have the following hand crank machines:

    Frister & Rossman TS High Arm
    Frister & Rossman TS 15 High Arm
    Haid & Neu Harris 9G
    New Home Model T
    SewHandy Chain Stitch
    Singer 12 New Family
    Singer 20-1
    Singer 27K2 (Combination HC/Treadle)
    Singer 28-1 (Combination HC/Treadle)
    Singer 28K2
    Singer 29K70 (Combination HC/Treadle)
    Singer 29K70 (Combination HC/Treadle) #2
    Singer 35-1 (Carpet Machine)
    Singer 66-3
    Singer 66-14
    Singer 99K31
    Singer 115-1
    Singer 201K4
    Singer 216G

    I also have the following machines that have been fitted and operating with a non-factory method of handcranking without use of a motor or treadle (all 1:1 ratio):

    Adler 205-64 (Steering Wheel Knob)
    Singer 31-15 (Steering Wheel Knob)
    Singer 111G156 (Steering Wheel Knob)
    Singer 221 Featherweight (Window Crank)
    Singer 301-2 (Window Crank)

    Now I can’t wait until someone lists their treadles......

    CD in Oklahoma
    "I sew, I sew, so it's off to work I go!!!"
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  20. #20
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    CD - I may make a trip to OK just to see them all - wondering what it would be like to drive from your place to Atlanta GA. DH and I are planning a trip south this fall to see Kids and FIL - and maybe we could make a detour. Been the other way so many times, it might be worth the added miles just to see some different scenery.

    Now I'll wait until DH reads this and see what he says LOL!!
    My name is Cathy - and I'm addicted to old sewing machines and their attachments.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by ThayerRags View Post
    Oh goodie, I can play this game. I have the following hand crank machines:
    ---
    Singer 27K2 (Combination HC/Treadle)
    Singer 28-1 (Combination HC/Treadle)
    Singer 28K2

    Now, if any of those Combo units are pre 1900 and you would be interested in a trade for the Pfaff Convertible.....

  22. #22
    Super Member kiffie2413's Avatar
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    Wow!!! I'd love to see pics of everyone's machines....
    Always do right. This will gratify some people and astonish the rest~Mark Twain

  23. #23
    Super Member amcatanzaro's Avatar
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    I turned my Spartan into a handcrank, it's kinda portable.

    I've heard of 306's being turned into handcranks for a zigzag.
    Anastasia - I like to sew square things.

  24. #24
    Member sophiebernina's Avatar
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    I took the motor off on an aluminium 201 and added a hand crank. It's much lighter than my heavy 201 and I find it fairly easy to carry. I would say this could be used as a 'portable' machine.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by kiffie2413 View Post
    Wow!!! I'd love to see pics of everyone's machines....
    Here are most of my handcranks in one picture.. (Oh, and I completely forgot about the Little Worker....)
    Name:  20150723_072605_sm.jpg
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