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-   -   Cleaning and repairing the Shellac clear coat on Vintage sewing machine heads (https://www.quiltingboard.com/vintage-antique-machine-enthusiasts-f22/cleaning-repairing-shellac-clear-coat-vintage-sewing-machine-heads-t193635.html)

Glenn 02-20-2014 01:50 PM

It is my pleasure to help Sunflowerzz, thank you. P;ease feel free to ask if you need any help.
Skip

tropit 02-23-2014 05:03 AM

I have so many questions about finishes. Glenn, you've been very helpful. Thanks so much. I have a couple of other machines that I'm working on. One has a beige enameled finish and the other is a gorgeous old machine that appears to have been lacquered over and is now blistering.

The beige one is having its chips and scratches filled in with Testors enamel. How should it be finished off? With a clear coat of...what? Or, should it just be buffed with polishing compound?

The old machine (1890s) has some pretty amazing decals that I don't want to disturb. There is some blistering on the bed and at the crease where the bed meets the neck. The other parts of the machine look pretty good. I'll have to take a closer look at it though.

Perhaps these topics need to be started up in a new thread. I don't want to hijack, or get readers confused about the shellac process with these processes.

I have Qs about cabinets and cases too, but that is definitely another thread...LOL. :)

Thanks, Cindy

miriam 02-23-2014 05:40 AM

We really need to tap into Grant's expertise when it comes to the non-black sewing machines and their finish. We do have a thread about the finishes on the cabinets and Joe has posted info on the cases.

tropit 02-23-2014 05:45 AM

Yoo, hoo...Grant? Where are you?

miriam 02-23-2014 05:54 AM

You may have to go to Grant15clone's profile and then read what all he has posted. http://www.quiltingboard.com/members...ne-u73934.html I think he may have a blog or facebook as well.

Smorris17119 03-04-2014 07:05 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Glenn please help, I purchased a lovely Centennial Featherweight on ebay it was in pretty good condition but it was filthy. I started to use nephta and as soon as the rag with the nephta touched the surface the shellac reacted and became gold flaked, I looked at the rag thinking something may have come off on it and the rag was perfectly clean. I tried in other areas and the same thing happened. We tried getting rid of the gold flake with compound, shoe polish, WD-40 and nothing worked. Do you have any idea what happened and what I should do next???? I only had this machine for a few hours when this happened. I will try and attach pictures.
Thank you in advance for any help you can give me.
Sharon
NH

Glenn 03-04-2014 07:20 PM

Smorris
I have never seen this before, it appears that the Fw was painted to cover up this problem and the naptha cleaned off this bad paint. It was not protected with a clear coat of shellac. I want you to take sewing machine oil and soft rag(t-shirt) and clean the gold flaking area to see if it turns black again. Then test a spot with the french polish tech in my tut and let me know what the results are. Naptha will not react with shellac so there is something else going on here. I see scratches that was in the finish to. I think this problem was hidden by someone to make it look pretty. I see the decals are in good shape so it had some shellac over them. Let me. Stay away from the decals for now.
Skip

Glenn 03-04-2014 07:24 PM

I also clean with sewing machine oil first to see if it needs anything else to clean the finish and sometimes sewing machine oil is all you need. Always test your chemicals in an area that will not be seen to see how it will work.

Smorris17119 03-04-2014 09:10 PM

Thanks for your quick response, did what you said and we'll see what it looks like in the morning, I'll send you a picture. Looks good wet but when it dries out I'm afraid the gold will pop out again, we'll see.
Sharon
NH

Smorris17119 03-05-2014 04:58 AM

2 Attachment(s)
WOW, shut the door, this is amazing!!!!! I oiled all the black the whole machine rubbed it in for 5 min or so with my fingers. Most of the black disappeared. Than on tje back of the column under the spool pin I used the french polish on a small section. You can see in the pic where it's still a bit rough, but I am very pleased with the results. It really went from boat anchor to wow in a matter of a few minutes.
SO how do I finish her up? A light french polish all over or thank my lucky strs and leaver her. Or Do I do any other top coat???
Again Thank you so much
Sharon
NH

Smorris17119 03-05-2014 05:03 AM

The gold spots you see on the top picture is a reflection of the spool pin it's the black spot right next to it that's still rough from the nephta reactionSharon
nh

Glenn 03-05-2014 06:32 AM

To finish up I would give the whole a light french polish, let it cure for a week or so then use car wax to shine it up and protect more. I use a good mcquires carnuba car wax. The machine is looking good. I really don't think the naptha reacted with the shellac, Naptha just removed all the dirt and oil so you could see problems. I am glad everything is going well on the machine. Good job. Let me know if you nedd anymore help.
Skip

Smorris17119 03-05-2014 01:10 PM

Thanks so much, it really gave me a scare, everyone I had talked to suggested I remove the shellac and here it took such a simple fix.
You rock
Sharon
nh

Glenn 03-05-2014 02:20 PM


Originally Posted by Smorris17119 (Post 6610821)
Thanks so much, it really gave me a scare, everyone I had talked to suggested I remove the shellac and here it took such a simple fix.
You rock
Sharon
nh

Great, let me know if you need more help. You are most welcome.
Skip

Rodney 04-02-2014 08:09 AM

I'm working on a Singer 99k at the moment with the same gold flecks showing in the shellac.
This machine had a lot of areas where the shellac was alligatoring and lifting off the base coat. I think the gold flecks are tiny air bubbles under the shellac where the shellac is separated from the base coat and the gold color is the true color of the shellac finish. I'll rub the machine down again today with just alcohol and linseed oil before I try adding any more shellac.
One great thing about this method is problems are easy to catch before you go too far and shellac is a very forgiving finish to work with.

I'm working on this machine for my 10 year old daughter to bring to her 4H meetings. I want it to be pretty so she can be proud to show it off when she's there.
Rodney

Smorris17119 05-07-2014 04:57 AM

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Hi Glen,
well you saved me on my featherweight with french polishing so I moved up to a red eye that also needed a french polish, easy right! Not this time, the top part of the head came out good but the bed is giving me a real hard time. It looked real nice and smooth when I went to bed but looked at it this morning and it's cloudy with discoloration and swirls which didn't show last night. Any suggestions would be helpful. This is supposed to be a gift to my daughters law for Mother's Day. I don't know if it will make it.

Glenn 05-07-2014 05:03 AM

I think you used to much linseed oil. Use a little alcohol and a drop of linseed oil before starting the french polish again and do not apply very much pressure. the swirl marks are from the rag and oil and the shellac not laying down smooth.

Smorris17119 05-09-2014 09:31 AM


Originally Posted by Glenn (Post 6707210)
I think you used to much linseed oil. Use a little alcohol and a drop of linseed oil before starting the french polish again and do not apply very much pressure. the swirl marks are from the rag and oil and the shellac not laying down smooth.

Sorry It took so long to get back to you but I've been fighting with my password and had a hard time getting back onto the board.
So I did what you said and the results aren't that good. I'm going to try another round of shellac and linseed oil in a week or so. I'd do it sooner but it has to go to my daughter-in-laws tomorrow which is just next door so I'll be able to still get to it.
I don't know what's going on with it. I've done a few other machines with very good results.
I'm open for any suggestions.
Thanks so much for your help

Glenn 05-09-2014 10:25 AM

Are you having very high humidity or rain? Moisture will turn shellac cloudy.

Smorris17119 05-09-2014 10:47 AM


Originally Posted by Glenn (Post 6710318)
Are you having very high humidity or rain? Moisture will turn shellac cloudy.

Its raining but the heat is still on. Just wondering, how long do I have to wait between using the linseed oil and alcohol and the shellac treatment. I'm wondering if I originally didn't wait long enough between treatments.

miriam 05-09-2014 12:09 PM

Glenn, I've been fooling with a Franklin and going nuts. There is gooey looking shellac on the decals - I'm afraid to do much there... Any tips?

Glenn 05-09-2014 01:06 PM

I would wait a couple of days.
Skip

Glenn 05-09-2014 01:08 PM

Miriam, be careful with this one. It is oil that has melted in with the shellac. take a Q-tip in alcohol and lightly clean the area the crude and be careful to only touch the grude to see it this works. You want to melt the crude into the Q-tip

miriam 05-09-2014 04:51 PM

Argh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Glenn 05-09-2014 04:54 PM

Not going to well ???

miriam 05-09-2014 04:59 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Not like it would love it to go - something BUGS me... It does look better than it did. There are still rough places. The decals are a bit creepy in the first place. I think it is a bit scary because I really do care how this one comes out - so far the ones I've done have been kind of clunkers and ANYTHING was an improvement. This one has potential to look pretty good.
Before pic:
[ATTACH=CONFIG]475113[/ATTACH]

So Far:
[ATTACH=CONFIG]475114[/ATTACH]
it seems a bit grainy.

miriam 05-09-2014 05:07 PM

3 Attachment(s)
Ok a couple more pics:
[ATTACH=CONFIG]475115[/ATTACH]
[ATTACH=CONFIG]475116[/ATTACH]
[ATTACH=CONFIG]475118[/ATTACH]

miriam 05-09-2014 05:07 PM

Dung Beetles all over that machine.

Glenn 05-09-2014 05:21 PM

The dung beatles are called scarabs. and yes this machine could look grand. The decals are in good shape. Nothing more than a clone of the Singer 27. Same shuttle and bobbins(wasp shuttle) Okay goes easy on the decals with a little sewing machine oil. It looks like it has been stored where it got very warm. You will need to french polish this one once it is cleaned to have a nice shinny machine. The decals on this machine is better than the Franklin I have. It looks like you have a good start on it. Just continue to do what I showed you and it will come out nice.

miriam 05-09-2014 05:33 PM

YUP it was stored in the attic above the Amish guy's wood stove in his shop - not much ventilation in the summer either... I hope I don't ruin it. The works was pretty oily which was actually a good thing - very little rust except on some chrome... and those are still BUGS.

Glenn 05-09-2014 06:17 PM

Not fond of Egyptian motifs are we?? :D

miriam 05-10-2014 12:10 AM


Originally Posted by Glenn (Post 6710788)
Not fond of Egyptian motifs are we?? :D

Depends on if it has BUGS or not...

miriam 05-10-2014 02:09 AM

So keep rubbing on thinned shellac over the bugs?

jpete523 05-10-2014 08:36 AM

Hi Glenn, I posted a question for you over on Cleaning and Reviving Furniture. Do you mind taking a look at it? I apologize for hijacking this thread. Jan

KLO 05-10-2014 09:21 AM

I love the scarabs on that machine. I actually watched a little dung beetle do it's "thing" once with some doggy do-do. (Yes, I know, TMI but it is what it is.) It was actually fascinating to watch the beetle take a bit of that stuff, make it into a ball, then roll it using it's back legs and moving backwards to wherever it was that it wanted to store "it". I couldn't take my eyes off it. So, miriam maybe you should watch one some day and you will be astounded and more enthused by your beautiful machine ...... or maybe not! Just saying .......

FabQuilter 08-26-2014 06:31 PM

New to this board and taking notes. Thank you for posting these tips.

Rodney 08-26-2014 11:41 PM

Miriam if you get tired of it just send those nasty dung beetles my way. Scarab sounds much better doesn't it? I like that pattern far better than I do the Singer Sphinx. I think it's going to look gorgeous.
Are you done with it yet and how did it turn out?
Rodney

miriam 08-27-2014 02:50 AM


Originally Posted by Rodney (Post 6861690)
Miriam if you get tired of it just send those nasty dung beetles my way. Scarab sounds much better doesn't it? I like that pattern far better than I do the Singer Sphinx. I think it's going to look gorgeous.
Are you done with it yet and how did it turn out?
Rodney

It's in time out for looking like I mucked it up...

Rodney 08-27-2014 07:00 AM

That's a shame. I think everyone screws up at least one machine. I know I have and I don't have all that many. I hope you didn't silver the decals. If it's just a hosed up clear coat it can probably be saved.
Rodney

QuiltingVagabond 08-27-2014 07:51 AM

Time out is good - we have to show these machines who's the boss, right:D


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