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Help with identifying, please??

Help with identifying, please??

Old 06-05-2019, 01:06 PM
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Default Help with identifying, please??

Hi - greetings from sunny northern Arizona, my first post and I'm already begging for info!

My sister and brother-in-law purchased this great old Singer treadle at an antique store in England, in the late 1970's when they were stationed at Lakenheath AFB. The proprietor of the shop told them the machine was about 100 years old. I bought it from them about 35 years ago, and it has been a cute little dust collector for me - until recently.

I got it hooked up with a new belt, and named her Tillie. She sews better than I do, I had never tried a treadle before, it's kind of like learning to drive - a stick shift!

Hopefully the photos come in clearly, as far as I can tell (even tried doing a pencil rubbing), the serial number is 5624460. I've tried looking numerous times, and can't tell - is she a Model 12?

Thank you so much in advance for allowing me to take advantage of your vast knowledge. I have learned more than you would believe from lurking on here!

Jonee

Loving Caretaker to:
(Ten Ton) Tillie;
Lucille (Ball) 401A;
Betty (my sweet mother) Featherweight 221;
Ollie Belle (long story..) 201-2
Baby (my sister's) SewHandy No. 20-1
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Old 06-05-2019, 01:28 PM
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Looks too big for a 12. I am leaning towards an early Improved Family. but I have known to be wrong.

Welcome aboard.
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Old 06-05-2019, 01:47 PM
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Welcome from Texas. If in fact the serial # of your machine is 5624460 it appears as though it was made in 1883. Machines prior to 1900 did not have prefix letters in front of the serial number. Here's a site that might help you.

https://sewalot.com/dating_singer_se...ial_number.htm
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Old 06-05-2019, 02:53 PM
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I think Leon is right. I certainly don't know, but this site seems to have one similar and it's called an Improved family and has the Singer 15 look to it.

bkay

http://www.sewmuse.co.uk/singer%20improved%20family.htm
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Old 06-05-2019, 03:51 PM
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Thank you all for your input. I found one photo awhile back (on Pinterest, I believe) that indicated it was an Early Improved Family but it is the only one I’ve seen that was so close. I am real glad that Leon verified that for me. It’s neat in a way to have one so old, but at the same time there isn’t much info on it. It is simply built, and heavy as a battleship - I am really thankful, as the bobbins, bobbin case, everything but a small thread guide were intact. The glaring red new belt leaves room for improvement, I admit, lol.

I’ve lurked on here for just over a year now - and felt if I’d get good info, it would be here. I love this board! Thanks for the help and the welcomes... ��
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Old 06-05-2019, 05:06 PM
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Here's a link to another mystery machine that looks similar to yours. It was set up for leather work.http://mysewingmachineobsession.blog...-improved.html
Nice collection of Singer models!
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Old 06-06-2019, 12:06 PM
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Originally Posted by JoneB View Post
...
I got it hooked up with a new belt, and named her Tillie. She sews better than I do, I had never tried a treadle before, it's kind of like learning to drive - a stick shift!
...
Welcome, it look like you have a nice collection.

Actually, driving a stick shift was easier for me (not particularly at the time) as I learned stick shift within about a year of getting my license. I tried my grandmother's treadle and said, no, thank you. My sister learned how to sew on a treadle and kept telling me what joy it brought her, I finally got one and just played a bit with it, until I realized how fun it really was.

Just a thought, I'm thinking you may have an "Improved Manufacturing" machine. I'm basing that on the belt being on the outside of the hand wheel, rather than between the hand wheel and the machine. Most of the IF machines that I have seen pictures of have the belt travel between the hand wheel and the machine.

Both the 15 and 16 class machines have the tension on the 'nose.'

Janey - Neat people never make the exciting discoveries I do.
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Old 06-06-2019, 12:35 PM
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That is a nice Improved Family. Model 12 is not a high arm machine, so it's easy to tell them apart.

I have two, and they both take a different bobbin than the class 15, it's just a bit narrower.

this is one of mine, slightly later version



and an earlier model that has a different way to adjust the foot presser, and the bobbin winder was on the belt guard instead of the machine. I'd like to see a picture of how your bobbin winder is mounted as yours is the first I've seen like this with a bobbin winder not on the belt guard. I'd love to get a bobbin winder for mine that mounts to the machine.



it's also neat to see that your belt rides on the outside of the flywheel and not the inside, so it may be an industrial version. Singer made a lot of variations of this machine for industrial use.

Last edited by Macybaby; 06-06-2019 at 12:42 PM.
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Old 06-06-2019, 01:33 PM
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Hi, Janey - thanks for your thoughts on this great-grandmother Tillie of mine! I learned to drive on a stick shift, around 1968 or thereabouts. My poor "instructors" came close to whiplash more than once, I'm afraid!

I've wondered about it being used for some type of manufacturing, you can tell it has seen a lot of use (I think) by all the chipping and wear on the decals. Not sure if that qualifies as more use, but... Also interesting is your (and Cathy's) interest in the belt outside of the hand wheel. I'm loving any and all feedback, because I've so often wondered what kind of life it's had before me!

Thanks,
Jonee
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Old 06-06-2019, 01:42 PM
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[ATTACH=CONFIG]613599[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]613600[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]613601[/ATTACH]

Thanks, Cathy - here are some closer photos of the bobbin winder. I replaced the tire recently, and it works extremely well (well, as long as I keep the wheel moving forward...). I did another closer of the SN, and can you all tell if the first number is a 3 - or a 5? I wonder why it would be so chipped, unless someone tried to chop out the plate. Lots of curiosities, which is why this is such a fun pursuit.

I really appreciate all the comments, I honestly did try to read through as much of the previous threads as I could before posting my inquiry so's not to duplicate questions. You all are amazing!
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