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Why do sewing machine manufacturers quit making parts for older machines?

Why do sewing machine manufacturers quit making parts for older machines?

Old 08-30-2018, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by cashs_mom View Post
3D printers might help you get a replacement part, but only if you have the part you need intact or drawings of it. Also, contrary to what you see on TV, 3D printing is pretty expensive. More so the denser and larger the piece you need. My husband had an custom console he designed done for his car. Cost a fortune. I believe they only do plastics with them so it would be no good for metal parts.
Home ones only do plastic, but you can get your parts printed in metal by a couple different companies, or print it in wax and do a metal casting with it like they do for jewelry (we have a fine jewelry commercial around here that’s like “come see our 3d printers and all the custom rings we can make!”)
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Old 08-30-2018, 04:16 PM
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Originally Posted by smokeythecat View Post
Home ones only do plastic, but you can get your parts printed in metal by a couple different companies, or print it in wax and do a metal casting with it like they do for jewelry (we have a fine jewelry commercial around here that’s like “come see our 3d printers and all the custom rings we can make!”)
Yeah, but you're talking easy metals to work with. Steel is not so easy.
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Old 08-30-2018, 04:57 PM
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Bkay you'd be surprised at how far 3D printing has come. Steel is being done I just looked it up. It won't be long until the plastic gears and other parts that are the bane of our beloved VSMs are being replicated in metals.

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Old 08-30-2018, 06:58 PM
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Originally Posted by quiltedsunshine View Post
It's a marketing thing. However, you can still get lots of parts for the older Berninas. I understand the the Viking / Husqvarna / Pfaff become obsolete quickly. What machine are you working with?
This is what happened to me! I bought a computerized Viking Husqvarna and about 5- 6 years later its feed dogs quit working. I called everywhere and no one would even look at it. All repair guys said that it was not fixable. I tried to give it away... free to them to cannibal it (use it for parts) but no one would take it. I will never put that much money in a sewing machine again! Back to the mechanicals ... Singer from Walmart... very inexpensive. If it brakes, I'll dump it and buy another. So far, it has been a real workhorse and I'm a happy camper!
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Old 08-31-2018, 03:02 AM
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Bearisgray: did you come to any conclusions on the subject? There really aren't any guaratees, and I guess the main reasons to get a new machine would be the old one doesn't work or aren't fit for the purpose you need it for. The new have a few nice features, like 9 mm zigzag, built in upper feed, stretcy stitches, auto stitch regulator for free motion. I like a good button hole too. I don't bother too much with needle up/down, auto tie off, auto thread cutter. I do well with the separate walking foot... If you like working on a simple 201, you probably would not like many (or any) of the lower to medium priced machines, you really need to serach a bit ot get a nice one at a reasonable price.
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Old 08-31-2018, 04:23 AM
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I agree about not being able to find parts. That is why I have held on to my 1958 Singer 401A (the last year of all metal parts. I have sewn everything on it from awnings to car seat covers. I love that machine!
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Old 08-31-2018, 06:30 AM
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Originally Posted by carolynjo View Post
I agree about not being able to find parts. That is why I have held on to my 1958 Singer 401A (the last year of all metal parts. I have sewn everything on it from awnings to car seat covers. I love that machine!
I bought one - maybe I should have had it tuned up or something - I actively disliked it.
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Old 08-31-2018, 06:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Mickey2 View Post
Bearisgray: did you come to any conclusions on the subject? There really aren't any guaratees, and I guess the main reasons to get a new machine would be the old one doesn't work or aren't fit for the purpose you need it for. The new have a few nice features, like 9 mm zigzag, built in upper feed, stretcy stitches, auto stitch regulator for free motion. I like a good button hole too. I don't bother too much with needle up/down, auto tie off, auto thread cutter. I do well with the separate walking foot... If you like working on a simple 201, you probably would not like many (or any) of the lower to medium priced machines, you really need to serach a bit ot get a nice one at a reasonable price.
My conclusions: I love the Pfaff 1471, 1473, 1475 machines. However, if the motherboard dies on any of them, the machine is effectively dead. (Ever wonder why that piece is called the "mother"board?)

For the sewing I do, which tends to be "basic" , the machines I have are adequate. I have a Bernina 930 Record (1980s machine) and the Pfaffs - I also have a couple of Singer 237's - of which I am also fond.

The only shiny black machine I have is a Necchi BU. I was stupid and gave away the cabinet, but it needed to see the sewing machine doctor, so now it is in a portable case.
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Old 08-31-2018, 06:39 AM
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Called Motherboard because in the early days of computers before PC's with their consolidated all on one board approach, Computers were composed of several discrete boards all connected to the "mother" board
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Old 08-31-2018, 07:10 AM
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the days of manufacturer making their own parts is pretty much a thing of the past. They hire a machine shop to make them an order. The machine shop tools up to make them based on the spec, and the first part may cost $1,000 or more, and then the cost goes way down as more parts are made. When the Manufacturer uses them up, they'd have to pay for the setup fee again and with a smaller "parts" order, the cost per part is going to be much higher. With advances in technology, it is getting cheaper to retool to make different parts, but the initial outlay for equipment is still high. We are seeing shops being able to be cost effective on smaller jobs (like 10,000 instead of having to order 100,000 of one item). But these shops may have more work than they can handle, so they will accept those they can make the larger profit on, which are normally larger jobs.

if you need a part for an old machine and are willing to pay, you may be able to get a small shop to tool up and make you one. Most people feel it's more cost effective to buy a new machine.

there is nothing wrong with a business doing what is most profitable for them given the resources they have. If they did not do that, their investors would take their investment capital somewhere else. All of us with pensions and 401Ks do not want to see our invested funds losing value, and we will move our funds to areas with more growth than those that are stagnating.
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