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Thread: I've caught the bug!

  1. #1
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    I've caught the bug!

    Found a Class 15 clone (Universal) near me in a gorgeous cherrywood cabinet in great shape for $100. Had to buy it. Husband got it oiled and tuned up. Then I saw a Johnson Ruffler online and offered $250. Accepted. Who doesn't want a dedicated ruffler? Then was offered someone's Featherweight for a song. Well, why not? My main sewer is a Viking 1+ and I just put a used Janome 500E embroidery machine on layaway.

    And dear lord, I'm now looking at a Willcox & Gibbs chain stitch. My husband goes between thinking I'm nuts and being rather fascinated with the old machinery.

    I am a vintage dealer so it comes naturally. My main sellers are jewelry and clothing, but I do venture into knitting machines as I'm an avid knitter. So I guess vintage sewing machines are a natural spinoff.

    This is addicting, y'all!
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 12-06-2018 at 04:05 PM. Reason: shouting/all caps

  2. #2
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    And you've only just begun...

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cari-in-Oly View Post
    Yep, it's quite the rabbit hole and so much fun. When you get your 500e join the new machine embroidery section of the main forum. I own 5 embroidery machines(yes, another rabbit hole lol), my 500e is my favorite, love that machine!

    Cari

    I'm glad to hear that, Cari! I think I made a great decision buying it. I'm still paying it off, but it's going fast. Should be able to take care of it by end of January. Yep, I can see that being another rabbit hole.

    I was looking at new machines originally, but just love the style of the old ones. My husband is giving me 'the eye' - LOL - but my business does pay for them since I use the machines to repair vintage clothing. I might end up selling the Johnson Ruffler, as I'm not sure how much I'll use it. It was in good shape when I got it but I did clean it up some.

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    Shhhh, don't tell my husband.... LOL

  5. #5
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    OMG, I think I accidentally threw away the tiny little gathering foot for the Willcox & Gibbs!! And of COURSE the trash man came this AM!!! I just went through everything I had and it's not there! I remember tossing a little box and an envelope and I thought they were empty - I swear I checked - but this thing is so tiny!!! UGH!!!

  6. #6
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    Linda, welcome to the addiction! It is so much fun. The variability of the early tech is what hold my interest. Mine is only pre-1900 machines. If I may say, that seems a bit steep for a Johnson Ruffler. Was it in some way unique?

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    There are worse addictions, whilst OH has been hauled in to free up my Bernina Jubilae on which I think someone used sump oil, I've started on this one.......

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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
    Linda, welcome to the addiction! It is so much fun. The variability of the early tech is what hold my interest. Mine is only pre-1900 machines. If I may say, that seems a bit steep for a Johnson Ruffler. Was it in some way unique?
    I was available - is that unique? LOL. Actually it's in pristine shape and is white, but I would have bought it regardless because of the engineering that went into it. I can't get it to keep tension well, though it's possible that I'm doing something wrong. The ruffles do not lock in at all, i.e. you can pull the ruffles right out. Need to read the manual carefully - could be user error. I have no issues putting in a new tensioner if need be. I took the other one apart to see if it can be worked with and noticed it was missing a little lock nut. I ordered a new tensioner as they aren't that expensive, just in case.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by heart_of_bernina View Post
    There are worse addictions, whilst OH has been hauled in to free up my Bernina Jubilae on which I think someone used sump oil, I've started on this one.......

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    That's really pretty! Do you just clean really well? Re-lacquer? Curious.

  10. #10
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    There is a chance the old Alfa is made in Spain or France, even with the Singer type stitch length lever. I generally keep the original finish, cleaning and polishing do wonders. Resin based car polish (liquid whitish stuff) lifts up grime and restore finish quite well. Chips and cratches can be filled in, minor touch ups done carefully will blend in fine. I allow signs of age and wear on a machine, and I suspect the Alfa is in good enough condition to clean up very well.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveH View Post
    Linda, welcome to the addiction! It is so much fun. The variability of the early tech is what hold my interest. Mine is only pre-1900 machines. If I may say, that seems a bit steep for a Johnson Ruffler. Was it in some way unique?
    Oh, the Johnson Ruffler is the machine made from a Singer 15 to only ruffle, not the attachment.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mickey2 View Post
    There is a chance the old Alfa is made in Spain or France, even with the Singer type stitch length lever. I generally keep the original finish, cleaning and polishing do wonders. Resin based car polish (liquid whitish stuff) lifts up grime and restore finish quite well. Chips and cratches can be filled in, minor touch ups done carefully will blend in fine. I allow signs of age and wear on a machine, and I suspect the Alfa is in good enough condition to clean up very well.
    What do you use to do the touch ups with?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mickey2 View Post
    There is a chance the old Alfa is made in Spain or France, even with the Singer type stitch length lever. I generally keep the original finish, cleaning and polishing do wonders. Resin based car polish (liquid whitish stuff) lifts up grime and restore finish quite well. Chips and cratches can be filled in, minor touch ups done carefully will blend in fine. I allow signs of age and wear on a machine, and I suspect the Alfa is in good enough condition to clean up very well.
    Hi, the badge says 'Marca Alfa Registrada' and I bought it in Spain, Catalunya to be exact. I am just going to clean up the needle plate etc. and polish the top, no extravagant procedure needed. OH will make a box base as he did for an old Peugeot. I'll post a pic later.

  14. #14
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    I have used nail polish to fill in chips (don't tell anyone, but it worked rather well). I have also used a black base paint where the metal showed and then filled in with layers of shellac. It requires a bit of techniquie, but it's not difficult; a cotton rag you make into ball, fine dust or grit made for the purpose, and applying shellac several layers. You can use sand paper, the type that stands up to water, fill in the scratch or chip, then carefully fill in, one layer after another, and gently polish to even it out. There is a dedicated thread on how to restore the japanning on old sewing machines on the top of this forum, I guess that's the most thorough way about it. I have mostly cleaned up more or less grimy machines, then polished and improved with minor thouch ups like described.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by lindawmn View Post
    Husband got it oiled and tuned up. <Snip!> My husband goes between thinking I'm nuts and being rather fascinated with the old machinery.
    OK, you've crossed the main hurdle, which is getting your hubby hooked, so you've got it made, baby! Lol, good job on the strategy.

    Do you sell old sock machines, or just the flat bed knitting machines? I'm a knitter, too, so, um, asking for a friend...

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    Quote Originally Posted by themadpatter View Post
    OK, you've crossed the main hurdle, which is getting your hubby hooked, so you've got it made, baby! Lol, good job on the strategy.

    Do you sell old sock machines, or just the flat bed knitting machines? I'm a knitter, too, so, um, asking for a friend...
    LOL. Just the flat bed knitting machines. I've not used the old sock machines (yet) but am just so enamored with the flat bed machines, especially that Passaps. Yup, Hubby goes from giving me what he calls his 'yarn face' (i.e. I'm pretending I care) but just can't help himself when it comes to fixing things. I'll start something and he starts hovering (like the cat) and next thing I know, he's offering advice or doing something for me I can't manage. He's much more useful than the cat, who insists on helping but offers nothing of value except moral support.

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    I bought this vintage Peugeot for 10 euros from our local Emmaus, a non profit making charitable organisation. The treadle was in a dreadful state plus we have no room for one, so it is now part of a garden table Husband made a box for the base and it now sits nicely in a niche in the pine dresser.

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  18. #18
    Super Member leonf's Avatar
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    is the Peugeot from the bicycle/car factory folk?
    "Sacrifices must be made." Otto Lilienthal

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    Yes it is, not exactly sure of the date. Will have to google.....the lion and arrow is the Peugeot symbol.

    '1876 Peugeot sewing machines won a gold medal in the Paris World Fair. In 1878, the patent "machine of pedestal table" leads to the development of a machine run using a single pedal.'


  20. #20
    Super Member leonf's Avatar
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    My monitor wasn't good enough to spot that. I own Peugeot bikes and have ridden in their cars. Thanks.
    "Sacrifices must be made." Otto Lilienthal

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    Quote Originally Posted by heart_of_bernina View Post
    I bought this vintage Peugeot for 10 euros from our local Emmaus, a non profit making charitable organisation. The treadle was in a dreadful state plus we have no room for one, so it is now part of a garden table Husband made a box for the base and it now sits nicely in a niche in the pine dresser.

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    I love the decaying on that machine!! The marquetry work on the cabinet is gorgeous too. I LOVE old pine - would love to get some reclaimed pine floors down at some point!

  22. #22
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    I could find it crazy. I have been able to keep it to my regular machine, some back ups, a featherweight and a hand crank which I adore.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lindawmn View Post
    I love the decaying on that machine!! The marquetry work on the cabinet is gorgeous too. I LOVE old pine - would love to get some reclaimed pine floors down at some point!
    Decals, not decaying. Darn spellcheck!!

  24. #24
    Super Member leonf's Avatar
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    I giggled when I read that.
    "Sacrifices must be made." Otto Lilienthal

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