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Thread: Went and looked at a Singer Dressmaker, but the motor sounded AWFUL...

  1. #1
    Senior Member pinkberrykay's Avatar
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    Went and looked at a Singer Dressmaker, but the motor sounded AWFUL...

    I finally had a chance to go and check out this cute little machine in a cabinet. They had her stored out in the garage (still can't figure out why people do this to these machines). They had heated her up so her motor was warm. She was plugged in when I arrived so I was able to test her right away. The minute the put my foot on the peddle she started making a terrible noise, I was afraid if I left my foot on it to long the motor was going to burn up. To me it sounded like the noise was coming from the feed dog/needle area but the man thought he heard it in the motor. It seamed like something was stuck, the needle moved up and down but the noise I can't even describe it. B/C I know nothing about this machine I was terrified to buy it not knowing what the cost would be to fix it.

    Anyone have any idea of what I am talking about with a good description

  2. #2
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Hmmm. I think you may be wrong about it being a Singer. Dressmaker is a different manufacturer. Regardless, if it has problems I would look elsewhere. There are plenty of vintage machines for sale and unless the Dressmaker is some amazing color or retro looking machine you can't live without, it's probably not worth buying if it needs parts and or repairing. (Depending on price of course)

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    I would of walked away to.
    Create something beautiful from scraps.

  4. #4
    Super Member valleyquiltermo's Avatar
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    Yes me also. No Deal!!!
    http://www.skillpages.com/DonnaValleyquiltermo
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  5. #5
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    I would have offered $5 and replaced the motor........

  6. #6
    Senior Member pinkberrykay's Avatar
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    I stand corrected it is a Singer 237 FASHION MATE!!!!

    She is a darling machine, but that clanking or knocking sound scared me. Ill see if I can find more info on it and then get back to her. Thanks Candace!!!




    Quote Originally Posted by Candace View Post
    Hmmm. I think you may be wrong about it being a Singer. Dressmaker is a different manufacturer. Regardless, if it has problems I would look elsewhere. There are plenty of vintage machines for sale and unless the Dressmaker is some amazing color or retro looking machine you can't live without, it's probably not worth buying if it needs parts and or repairing. (Depending on price of course)

  7. #7
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    oh - skip that one - junk

  8. #8
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    if it has a big belt on the bottom of the machine don






    if it has a big belt on the bottom of the machine don"t get it.

  9. #9
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Yup, Miriam is right. Not a Singer model you want!!

  10. #10
    Super Member jljack's Avatar
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    I got one of those by accident this weekend, as I only wanted the cabinet it is in. The cabinet is a lovely curved front Model 42 from the 1940s. The machine is goign to the dump!

  11. #11
    Super Member chris_quilts's Avatar
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    I have one of those. Ok, my DD has one b/c I bought it and gave it to her. Had to use it recently for zigzag purposes and didn't like it. Very loud and clunky machine as compared to Rebekah, my 301, but allegedly a good machine. DD loves it but am glad I don't sew on it. Hers is cabinetless so maybe that was part of my problem.
    I meant to behave......but there were too many other options

  12. #12
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    I have one of those that sneaked in - I won a cabinet in an auction for a dollar - one of those was in it. When I opened up the machine plastic gear parts fell out - it was all frozen up.

  13. #13
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    Kay, the Singer 237 is a great machine. It is one of the last all-metal interior machines that Singer made. It is reliable, heavy, and sturdy, and has a 1 amp motor, making it more powerful than a 15-91 or 201-2. There's only one piece of plastic in the interior, and that's the little gate that holds the bobbin case in. It's possible that some people are confusing this with a different machine.

    Noises by themselves are nothing to be scared of, nor is a jammed machine--sometimes it's as simple as a thread tangle blocking up the works. It would be a shame to pass on a quality machine like a 237 if it is something simple, but because I don't have a clear idea of what the noise sounded like, I can't begin to guess what it might be.

    Do you have a mechnically-inclined friend who can come with you to check the machine out?

  14. #14
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    And to confirm it's a Singer 237, here's what they look like:

    http://vssmb.blogspot.com/search/label/237

  15. #15
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    Don't those have a big old belt on the bottom?

  16. #16
    Super Member girliegirl's Avatar
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    I got a sewing out of a dumpster and it wont move and then when it did it sounded horrible..... i soaked her down with oil on all the rods underneath and once she broke free she just whistled along! Go get her!!! I would of grabbed her up!

    Quote Originally Posted by pinkberrykay View Post
    I finally had a chance to go and check out this cute little machine in a cabinet. They had her stored out in the garage (still can't figure out why people do this to these machines). They had heated her up so her motor was warm. She was plugged in when I arrived so I was able to test her right away. The minute the put my foot on the peddle she started making a terrible noise, I was afraid if I left my foot on it to long the motor was going to burn up. To me it sounded like the noise was coming from the feed dog/needle area but the man thought he heard it in the motor. It seamed like something was stuck, the needle moved up and down but the noise I can't even describe it. B/C I know nothing about this machine I was terrified to buy it not knowing what the cost would be to fix it.

    Anyone have any idea of what I am talking about with a good description
    Squirrelly Shirley

  17. #17
    Super Member girliegirl's Avatar
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    shame on you! lol.... poor girl being called junk...... some of my best finds where "junkettes"!!
    Quote Originally Posted by miriam View Post
    oh - skip that one - junk
    Squirrelly Shirley

  18. #18
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    There ARE some machines that just plain need to be passed up.

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    Hi Miriam, I'm not sure what you mean by "a big old belt on the bottom" of the machine. Do you mean inside the machine, like when you look inside it from the bottom? If so, the Singer 237 does not. The interior is entirely made from metal parts, the only belt is the one connected to the motor.

    The Singer 206s, 306s and 319s all have fiber timing belts inside them, if that's what you mean; but the 237 is a different animal.

    - Rain

  20. #20
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vintage.Singers.NYC View Post
    Hi Miriam, I'm not sure what you mean by "a big old belt on the bottom" of the machine. Do you mean inside the machine, like when you look inside it from the bottom? If so, the Singer 237 does not. The interior is entirely made from metal parts, the only belt is the one connected to the motor.

    The Singer 206s, 306s and 319s all have fiber timing belts inside them, if that's what you mean; but the 237 is a different animal.

    - Rain
    I do not mean the 206, 306 and 319 - there are others that look like the 237 but aren't as well made apparently.
    I opened one that looked like that and plastic gear parts fell out.
    But I noticed it had a knock out for a treadle belt for those who find a good one and want to treadle it. The machines I've seen with the plastic belts had other plastic and stamped parts as well. I did not know there was one out there that was any good. I'll be sure to watch for one.

    The 319 I have has a fiber and metal belt inside and it is down the side - it is not across the bottom like I am referring to as junk machines. The third picture down shows that belt on the far right http://www.quiltingboard.com/picture...c-t162425.html in this link

    Rain, I love the info on your blog - I am one of your followers
    Last edited by miriam; 02-03-2012 at 02:23 AM.

  21. #21
    Senior Member pinkberrykay's Avatar
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    Thanks for your knowledge, the link you provided is the one I am looking at, she is in a cabinet. I am starting to think that maybe the noise was normal. I haven't sewn on a vintage machine, I know they are loud. Can you suggest a price I should pay of this?? She was originally asking $30. I know I need to change to the belts, clean her and oil her up.
    TIA

    Quote Originally Posted by Vintage.Singers.NYC View Post
    Kay, the Singer 237 is a great machine. It is one of the last all-metal interior machines that Singer made. It is reliable, heavy, and sturdy, and has a 1 amp motor, making it more powerful than a 15-91 or 201-2. There's only one piece of plastic in the interior, and that's the little gate that holds the bobbin case in. It's possible that some people are confusing this with a different machine.

    Noises by themselves are nothing to be scared of, nor is a jammed machine--sometimes it's as simple as a thread tangle blocking up the works. It would be a shame to pass on a quality machine like a 237 if it is something simple, but because I don't have a clear idea of what the noise sounded like, I can't begin to guess what it might be.

    Do you have a mechnically-inclined friend who can come with you to check the machine out?

  22. #22
    Power Poster miriam's Avatar
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  23. #23
    Super Member purplefiend's Avatar
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    I have a Singer 237 and its a lovely machine; a very basic machine, only 2 stitches:straight and zig zag. It treadles great I have FMQ several baby quilts with mine. I got mine for $20 at a thrift shop a few years ago. It was loud when I first got it, needed cleaning and oiling.
    Sharon W.

  24. #24
    Super Member 3incollege's Avatar
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    Are you going for it?
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  25. #25
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    Hi Kay, it's tough for me to estimate prices since there's no standard that everyone adheres to, prices seem to vary across the country, and most importantly--I really don't know the condition of the machine! If there is something seriously wrong with it, $30 is too much; if it's in perfect working order, I'd pay $30 for it, but that has to be modified by the fact that I live in NYC, where $30 for anything is a steal; and I also don't have to pay a repairperson to go over the machines that I acquire, as that's my hobby.

    The bottom line is, a vintage sewing machine is worth whatever you're willing to pay for it. I've found that no matter what price you pay, you'll eventually find out that another person paid half of that for the same machine, and yet another person paid double.

    - Rain

    Vintage Singer Sewing Machine Blog
    http://vssmb.blogspot.com/

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