Interesting Singer Trivia

Old 09-22-2018, 09:21 AM
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Default Interesting Singer Trivia

I've always thought it was interesting that in WWII many companies stopped making their regular products and began manufacturing to support the war effort. How did they decide what to make? Many times it was something totally different from their regular output, not just switching from men's shirts to uniforms, for instance. Over the years, I've pondered dozens of questions on the subject, so I was really interested in this article about what Simanco (SInger MANufacturing COmpany, if you've ever wondered about that,) did during the war.

https://www.popularmechanics.com/mil...45-pistol-gun/

Not reflected in the title is the most interesting part for vintage sewing machine peeps: the quality of the craftsmanship of the guns they made was so high that it was decided their ability was wasted on making guns, and after only 500, Singer was changed to making parts for bomber sights, automatic pilots and other precisely machined items. I found it fascinating and thought you might enjoy it.

Maybe this is why we run into those missing records from the Singer factory in Germany when trying to find the date on an old machine- retribution. Ok, that was a joke. Well, sort of...
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Old 09-22-2018, 11:22 AM
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I guess that is why all those old sewing machines are still chugging along also. The two WW's are very interesting time periods. I am going to pass this on to my husband also. Thanks for the article.
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Old 09-22-2018, 05:02 PM
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Really great story! Thanks for posting it for us to enjoy!
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Old 09-22-2018, 05:30 PM
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Thanks for the info. I just finished reading my Dad's letters to Mom in 1946-7 when he was sent to Germany to clean up the leftovers of the German airplanes. They were afraid that the Nazis would rise up and try to fight again, so they destroyed all of Hitler's planes and some of ours too. It was too costly to send them back home. So they stripped the expensive parts and blew up the rest.

He was actually an observer for one day at the War trials. He sent home his ticket to get in and a map of where he sat, which was the press box. Lots of history in those letters.
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Old 09-22-2018, 06:41 PM
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Themadpatter, I think in some cases the govt contacted companies about making certain items for them. They may have asked for bids, I don't know. But the companies would certainly contact the govt to find out what they needed.

Battle Axe, that is so fascinating. I had a friend whose husband was the youngest Master Sergeant in WWII. He was with some of the first troops into Berlin after it fell. He has some stories that were so interesting.
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Old 09-23-2018, 08:00 AM
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There was a temporary agency called the War Production Board formed by FDR's executive order that more or less had full control of civilian industry - directing factories what to make, allocating raw materials etc. I don't believe the industry owners were given choice in the matter, if you had a typewriter factory and they told you to make machine guns, you made machine guns.
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Old 09-23-2018, 08:47 AM
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My Singer 66 from 1942 was from the last batch of 66s made in Elizabeth Port, NJ, before they began making for the War.
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Old 09-23-2018, 09:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Rocsew View Post
There was a temporary agency called the War Production Board formed by FDR's executive order that more or less had full control of civilian industry - directing factories what to make, allocating raw materials etc. I don't believe the industry owners were given choice in the matter, if you had a typewriter factory and they told you to make machine guns, you made machine guns.
That sounds correct to me, Rocsew. I couldn't remember exactly how it worked. Of course, like any other industry, wartime or not, you're going to have to make something that someone (probably a lot of someones) wants to buy to be successful. I'm sure that there was a govt coordinated effort to make sure that there were all the correct items being manufactured.

Thanks for the info.
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Old 09-23-2018, 12:26 PM
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My Dad was a flight engineer toward the end of WWII. When the war was over his crew gave the guys coming in from the front air time so they would have more money going out. They flew planes to the boneyard and destroyed them. Dad’s crew took them back, etc. Then they flew back to their base. One time flying over Arkansas Dad said he noticed one of the engines went out. He told the pilot to prepare his parachute Incase he had to deploy. Well the pilot deployed it right in the cab and the co-pilot had to land the plane somewhere in Arkansas.
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Old 09-23-2018, 04:52 PM
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Very interesting, thank you all.
I've always like precision machines, especially smaller simpler ones. Wind up watches, sewing machines and semi automatic weapons. As a Coast Guardsman and a police officer I carried, cleaned and trained on such guns. We were still using the .45 in the eighties. On the topic of corporate production, we were also using guns and ammunition made during WWII. While aboard one ship in the shipyard, we received a new 3" deck gun (cannon) still greased, built in 1942 by General Motors.
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