When reconditioning a singer vintage sewing machine I believe it is most important to completely disassemble all parts that rotate inside of bushings or other parts. This means all of the assemblies in the sewing machine head and under the sewing bed.
I do this because if you look at any sewing machine of this vintage, you will see that many of the assemblies have a coffee colored film on them. This is old oil varnish that has built up over many years. It is not particularly detrimental to a sewing machine, its affects are not readily apparent when you use the machine because it is a slow and imperceptible process. It’s kind of like my eyesight… over the years it ain’t as good as it used to be… So it is with oil varnish.
The problem with this oil varnish is that it is not only on the outside of the parts of an assembly. It is in them as well. It is on the bearing and rubbing surfaces that you can’t see or get to until it is taken apart. Here is a picture to show you what I mean…
Removing the varnish on the inside of the parts will result in a machine that runs as smoothly as it did when it was new.
That in itself is a good reason for disassembly and is the reason to do it… but there is another reason… lurking deep within… and only observable after cleaning…
The black gunk on the end of the magnet tip shown was left in the cleaning solution after ultrasonic cleaning… Look again, it is sticking to a magnet. What does this mean? Well, it means that the gunk is steel particles worn from parts in the machine over a lifetime. It’s not noticeable and it is perfectly normal, I see it on every machine we recondition… but it is better off gone.
Another good reason to completely disassemble for cleaning.
Don’t you agree?
Tell me what you think!