Restoration of a Vintage 1976/77 Kenmore Model 158.1914

Introduction This is a private restoration of a Kenmore model 1914-2 sewing machine. The serial number 0035262 identifies its year of manufacture from 1976 to 1977. Manufactured by Maruzen Sewing Machine Company, it was made in Japan, and it is a high quality all metal sewing machine, Because of its quality and capabilities, it isContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1976/77 Kenmore Model 158.1914”

A General Answer to a Specific Question

A reader recently contacted me with two questions that she wanted me to post an answer to… “There are two things I’d like to see you cover. One is an explanation of Kenmore model numbers. They make absolutely no sense to me- they don’t seem to run in any kind of numeric order. The otherContinue reading “A General Answer to a Specific Question”

Restoration of a Vintage 1959 Singer Model 185K – Millie’s Machine!

Introduction This restoration is one that is dear to my heart. You see, I have been blessed with five wonderful grandchildren. The oldest is my granddaughter, Millie. She is a very talented and artistic young lady! She loves anything that requires her to use her hands and her mind… beading, crocheting, and basically anything artisticContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1959 Singer Model 185K – Millie’s Machine!”

Restoration of a Vintage 1941 Singer Model 201-2… Meet Lola!

Introduction This is a private restoration for another fine Singer model 201-2. This beautiful sewing machine is named Lola. It isn’t surprising to me that folks get so attached to their sewing machines that they name them. Vintage sewing machines like this 201 have been sewing reliably for decades. Often, they become part of theContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1941 Singer Model 201-2… Meet Lola!”

Restoration of a Vintage 1951 Singer Model 201-2… Meet Belle!

Introduction Meet Belle, she is a Singer model 201-2 and the serial number AK553646 identifies her as a centennial machine commissioned for manufacture on July 26, 1951. What is a centennial machine? Singer began manufacturing sewing machines in 1851. They celebrated their 100th anniversary in 1951 and in commemoration of the event they changed theContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1951 Singer Model 201-2… Meet Belle!”

Restoration of an Antique 1918 Singer Model 28K Sewing Machine

Introduction Recently, a customer contacted me to help her find a Singer model 28 with a hand crank (Singer called it a hand drive). She wanted a vibrating shuttle machine and was looking at a few model 28’s on the Shopgoodwill auction site. She asked me for my impression on the machines she was lookingContinue reading “Restoration of an Antique 1918 Singer Model 28K Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Cleaning the Bobbin Shuttle from a Singer Vibrating Shuttle Machine

If you have a Singer vibrating shuttle machine such as the model 27/127 or 28/128, this is some preventative maintenance that you probably need. Because the steps are the same, this applies to all vibrating shuttle machine for any manufacture. It’s really easy to do and it will assure that the bobbin tension is smoothContinue reading “A Tutorial – Cleaning the Bobbin Shuttle from a Singer Vibrating Shuttle Machine”

Restoration of a 1969 Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1601 Sewing Machine

Introduction This Kenmore 1601 restoration is a custom order for a mechanical restoration and it’s a great opportunity to return a premium quality Kenmore to its peak performance. This particular machine is a model 158.16010 which dates it to 1969. Kenmore’s made prior to 1974 are of all metal construction and 1969/70 production dates areContinue reading “Restoration of a 1969 Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1601 Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1940 Singer Model 201-2

Introduction Another Singer model 201-2 restoration challenge! This is a private restoration and it like, so many vintage sewing machines, has a special story. This Singer model 201 is a family heirloom. It belonged to the customer’s mother and was undoubtedly used for many years before it was passed down to her. This machine wasContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1940 Singer Model 201-2”

Restoration of a Vintage “Centennial” Singer Model 201-2

Introduction The serial number of this machine is AK210841 and Ismacs dates it to 1951. It was one of 25,000 201’s commissioned for manufacture on February 20, 1951. The blue badge marks that it is a “Centennial” machine. Celebrating Singer’s 100th anniversary, machines were produced with a blue centennial badge. There is an interesting partContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage “Centennial” Singer Model 201-2″

Notice – Availability of J.E. Moser’s Ebony Black Aniline Dye Stain

A while back, I posted a tutorial on how to make a “perfect” black color match paint for chip repair on vintage black Singer sewing machines. The color is so good, I use it to repaint machines! The key component in the recipe is J.E. Moser’s ebony black aniline dye stain (846150 A1850). Since then,Continue reading “Notice – Availability of J.E. Moser’s Ebony Black Aniline Dye Stain”

A Tutorial – One Very Important Disassembly Tip for Your Sewing Machine Restoration

Wow, I haven’t posted for a while but I just can’t get this topic out of my head. Maybe because I have been getting more interest from folks contemplating a restoration on their sewing machine and I am worried they don’t know this very important fact. To me, this blog is like putting a messageContinue reading “A Tutorial – One Very Important Disassembly Tip for Your Sewing Machine Restoration”

A Tutorial – Threading a Vintage Singer Slant Needle Sewing Machine Models 401A, 403A, 404, 501, and 503A

Introduction It occurred to me that some folks may have questions on how to properly thread a vintage sewing machine. It also occurred to me that it has been a while since I posted a tutorial. This tutorial is a a remedy for both! Some machines thread one way, while others thread another way. IfContinue reading “A Tutorial – Threading a Vintage Singer Slant Needle Sewing Machine Models 401A, 403A, 404, 501, and 503A”

Restoration of a 1959 Vintage Singer Model 403A Sewing Machine

Introduction This restoration is for a Singer model 403A sewing machine. The customer purchased the machine as “refurbished” but had difficulty with the machine breaking the top thread when sewing thru multiple layers of fabric. She took the machine into a service repair shop where they oiled the machine and replaced the original foot controllerContinue reading “Restoration of a 1959 Vintage Singer Model 403A Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a 1946 Vintage Singer Model 201-2 Sewing Machine

Introduction This is a custom restoration of a wonderful Singer model 201-2 sewing machine. The story behind this machine is really a testament to the sentimental value and “part of the family” mystique these wonderful vintage sewing machines have. A history built on use and more importantly the fond memories of your mother or grandmotherContinue reading “Restoration of a 1946 Vintage Singer Model 201-2 Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a 1930 Vintage Singer Model 101 Sewing Machine

Introduction To start off, I have been putting off the restoration of this Singer model 101 off for a while. To long actually, because it is a restoration I really wanted to do but just couldn’t get to. My hesitancy is mostly due to the complexity of the machine and the fact that I haveContinue reading “Restoration of a 1930 Vintage Singer Model 101 Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a 1913 Vintage Singer Model 127

Introduction This is a custom original finish restoration and a great opportunity to restore a fine sewing machine to sew like new and stabilize the original but care worn Sphinx decals and beautiful black Japanned paint and protect them from further wear. Before undertaking a restoration like this, I think it is important to knowContinue reading “Restoration of a 1913 Vintage Singer Model 127”

A Tutorial – Restoring A Kenmore Sewing Machine Motor

I have had a number of folks ask me to do a tutorial on restoring a Kenmore sewing machine motor. Since I have done several types of motor restorations, I think now is the perfect time to fill the gap. It just so happens that I am in the middle of a Kenmore restoration, soContinue reading “A Tutorial – Restoring A Kenmore Sewing Machine Motor”

A Tutorial – How to Restore a Singer Model 101 “Potted” Motor

Introduction This tutorial follows several requests for a tutorial from folks who want to restore the motor on their vintage (possibly antique) Singer model 101 sewing machine. I am restoring a 101 and I thought that this would be a great opportunity to capture these steps since I am doing it as part of theContinue reading “A Tutorial – How to Restore a Singer Model 101 “Potted” Motor”

Restoration of a 1975/76 Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1941 Sewing Machine

Introduction This is a custom order restoration for another great Kenmore model 158.1941 sewing machine! In case you are not familiar with the model 1941, before I get started I will tell you a little bit about the machines history and features. Kenmore offered three machines in model 158.1941 lineup first introduced 1n 1975/76 asContinue reading “Restoration of a 1975/76 Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1941 Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Replacing the Motor Belt on a Kenmore Model 158 Series Sewing Machine

Someone asked me today on how to do this so this tutorial covers the motor belt replacement on the majority of Kenmore 158 series sewing machines. It does not apply to the 158.1030 or 158.1040 sewing machines because the motor attaches differently. Depending on the model of your machine, you may or may not needContinue reading “A Tutorial – Replacing the Motor Belt on a Kenmore Model 158 Series Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1922 Singer Model 127

Introduction For full transparency and disclosure, this Singer model 127 was my parts machine. It’s beat up, frozen solid due to oil oil varnish, and lack of lubrication… and it missing parts. As much as I hate to admit it, I acquired this machine with the intention of using it as a parts donor. IContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1922 Singer Model 127”

Conservation of a “Rare” 1953 Vintage Singer Model 221 “Featherweight”

Introduction I have always said that there really aren’t any real “rare” Singer sewing machines. I believe that to be true in the mainstream of sewing machine availability and it is my response to all of the listings that I regularly see for a “rare” model 66 or a “rare” model 99, or any otherContinue reading “Conservation of a “Rare” 1953 Vintage Singer Model 221 “Featherweight””

Restoration of a Kenmore Model 158.1030

Introduction This restoration is for a Kenmore model 158.10302. Produced between 1971 and 1973, it has an all metal sewing mechanism and cam stack. It is an interesting machine and is a portable 3/4 size sewing machine. It’s a nice package. It stores in a convenient carry case, it has a fold out storage compartmentContinue reading “Restoration of a Kenmore Model 158.1030”

A Tutorial – Removing and Cleaning the Bobbin Case on a Singer 201-2

The Singer 201 is known as Singer’s “Rolls Royce” of Singer sewing machines. It is undeniably a quiet, powerful, smooth running “professional grade” sewing machine capable of forming a beautiful straight stitch. The 201 was manufactured in the late 1920’s thru the late 1950’s and the sewing mechanisms remained unchanged throughout production. There are manyContinue reading “A Tutorial – Removing and Cleaning the Bobbin Case on a Singer 201-2”

Restoration of an Antique 1919 Singer Model 66 “Red Eye” Sewing Machine

Introduction The Singer model 66 is truly one of Singer’s fine iconic sewing machines. First introduced in America in October of 1902 and produced there until 1956 and was also produced in Scotland as the 66K until 1960. Singer claimed (and many believe) that the Singer model 66 was the first mass produced sewing machineContinue reading “Restoration of an Antique 1919 Singer Model 66 “Red Eye” Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a 1976 Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1941 – A Gift for Beth

Introduction My sister Beth moved into a new house and when she was packing, cleaning and clearing stuff out in preparation for the move, she gave me our Mom’s 1938 vintage Singer 201-2. For it’s memories and sentimental value it is my favorite machine… Lucky for me the 201 is also Singer’s finest straight stitchContinue reading “Restoration of a 1976 Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1941 – A Gift for Beth”

Restoration of a 1971-72 Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1802 Sewing Machine – A Gift for Amelia

The Kenmore model 158.1802 is the flagship of the Kenmore model 158 sewing machine line. When the 1802 was introduced in 1968, Kenmore claimed it was their best sewing machine. They went so far as to emblazon this claim on their badge for all to see, so who am I to argue? I will goContinue reading “Restoration of a 1971-72 Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1802 Sewing Machine – A Gift for Amelia”

A Tutorial – Mixing a Custom Color Black Paint for Singer Sewing Machines (and Others!)

In every black Singer sewing machine restoration, I find small paint chips on the edge of the bed, balance wheel, and often on the sewing arm. While usually they are small cosmetic imperfections, in a sewing machine restoration it is important to address them. The problem that I faced was that there is no blackContinue reading “A Tutorial – Mixing a Custom Color Black Paint for Singer Sewing Machines (and Others!)”

A Tutorial – Disassembling and Cleaning a Singer Model 27 Tension Assembly

This is a simple tutorial with a lot of pictures. While it is pretty simple to do, there are enough parts that it can get confusing when putting them back together and remembering how the parts fit together. To complicate the topic, two different tension assemblies may look the same, but they are fixed toContinue reading “A Tutorial – Disassembling and Cleaning a Singer Model 27 Tension Assembly”

Restoration of a Vintage 1957 Singer Featherweight 222K

The Singer featherweight is one of Singer’s iconic sewing machines and it has a well deserved reputation Diminutive in size and weighing in around 10 pounds, it looks like a toy. In reality, it is a very fine sewing machine and has a full rotating hook and gear driven sewing mechanism. The featherweight is knownContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1957 Singer Featherweight 222K”

A Tutorial – Reversing the Plastic Yellowing on a Kenmore Sewing Machine

Vintage Kenmore sewing machines are great in almost all respects. They are durable, reliable, tolerant to changes in fabric and tension adjustment, and even with little maintenance will run without complaint. All Kenmore machines made before 1975 have all metal construction in the sewing mechanism and body. All but a few do incorporate some plasticContinue reading “A Tutorial – Reversing the Plastic Yellowing on a Kenmore Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Adjusting the Presser Foot Height on a Singer Model 27

This tutorial is in response to a Customer who has a Singer model 27 with the presser foot so low that she can’t use the machine. This tutorial is geared towards Singer and other machines where the presser foot bar is held in adjustment by a single set screw. The machine is a 27, butContinue reading “A Tutorial – Adjusting the Presser Foot Height on a Singer Model 27”

Restoration of a “Very Early” Singer Model 28 Sewing Machine – Carole’s Machine

This restoration is for me… well, actually it is for my Wife. This machine was my Wife’s first vibrating shuttle machine. My Wife is a “vintage” person at heart. We share this interest, but she truly experiences it. A vibrating shuttle machine really appealed to her and knowing that a machine made in the lateContinue reading “Restoration of a “Very Early” Singer Model 28 Sewing Machine – Carole’s Machine”

Restoration of an Adler 187 Sewing Machine

This is a great opportunity to get acquainted with an Adler sewing machine. I have had the opportunity to familiarize myself with many different makes and models of sewing machines, but this is my first Adler. Overall I am very impressed with the machine. The Adler 187 was manufactured in West Germany by the Duerkopp-AdlerContinue reading “Restoration of an Adler 187 Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Restoring a Vintage Sewing Machine Motor

Recently I have been answering a number of questions from folks requesting information on how to restore a typical vintage sewing machine motor. I thought I would take an opportunity to answer these questions and show the process in this tutorial. There are many different brands of vintage sewing machine motors in service today andContinue reading “A Tutorial – Restoring a Vintage Sewing Machine Motor”

Restoration of a Vintage 1950’s-1960’s Yellow Atlas “Window-Matic” Precision Sewing Machine

I have come across these distinctive machines in pink, but this is the first one I have seen in yellow… It is an Atlas badged sewing machine with Brother written all over it. I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised since Brother manufactured the Atlas line of sewing machines, but it is a little bitContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1950’s-1960’s Yellow Atlas “Window-Matic” Precision Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a 1946 Vintage Singer Model 15-91

This restoration is a vintage Singer model 15-91… made special by her date of manufacture. The serial number of AG769262 places the date at July 31, 1946. To me, this means two things… First, it was the first production year Singer began making sewing machines following World War 2. Why? Singer stopped sewing machine manufactureContinue reading “Restoration of a 1946 Vintage Singer Model 15-91”

Restoration of a 1950’s-60’s Pink Atlas Precision Sewing Machine

This restoration is for a 1950’s or 1960’s “pink” Atlas precision sewing machine. I have done several of these and they are just that… very high quality precision all metal sewing machines. Made by Brother, they are cast iron bodied and all metal sewing machines that have an oscillating hook and uses class 15 bobbins..Continue reading “Restoration of a 1950’s-60’s Pink Atlas Precision Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a 1958 Vintage Singer 185K Sewing Machine

Hello! The feature image is our dog Ruby… I don’t want to spoil the surprise of this restoration, so I thought she would stand in for a cute picture! The subject of this blog is actually the restoration of a Singer 185K sewing machine, and this restoration is cathartic for me. The idea was toContinue reading “Restoration of a 1958 Vintage Singer 185K Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a 1953 Vintage 201-2 Sewing Machine

You don’t have to search hard to find many sources that claim that the Singer 201 is the best straight stitch sewing machine ever produced… some say in the World. It’s not hard to believe from where I sit, and it is the reason I love restoring them… to experience how a 201 ran whenContinue reading “Restoration of a 1953 Vintage 201-2 Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Replacing the Motor Belt on a Singer Model 328K “Stylemate” Sewing Machine

Introduced in 1963 and produced through 1965, the Singer Model 328K “Stylemate” is an all metal machine that represented Singer’s budget line of sewing machines. But “budget” didn’t mean “cheap” . The 328K is a full size sewing machine made with an aluminum alloy body construction and an all metal drive train. It featured aContinue reading “A Tutorial – Replacing the Motor Belt on a Singer Model 328K “Stylemate” Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Restoring a 1939 Model 221 “Featherweight” Motor

First introduced in 1933, the Singer Model 221 and model 222 sewing machines, affectionally known as the “Featherweights”, are as iconic as they are adored my many, many people. At a mere 11 pounds, it is a “half size” machine. It’s gear driven full rotary hook sewing mechanism is belt driven by an external 0.4Continue reading “A Tutorial – Restoring a 1939 Model 221 “Featherweight” Motor”

Restoration of a 1925 Vintage Singer Model 127-1 “Sphinx”

Every Singer sewing machine of this vintage has a story to tell. Most of the time it is clouded in memories of generations past and based on stories retold over several generations. Some will remember their Grandmother mending a dress for a special occasion and share that special memory with their son or daughter, whoContinue reading “Restoration of a 1925 Vintage Singer Model 127-1 “Sphinx””

Restoration of a 1970/71 (or is it a 1977) Vintage Kenmore Model 158.15160 Sewing Machine

It is pretty unusual for a Kenmore model to span model years. Only thing I can figure is that after 1971, the model 1516 was no longer manufactured. A few years later, Kenmore must have figured they had a winner and “reintroduced” it in 1977. I don’t know the true answer, but I actually thinkContinue reading “Restoration of a 1970/71 (or is it a 1977) Vintage Kenmore Model 158.15160 Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a 1969/1970 Kenmore Model 158.16011 Sewing Machine

Here’s another 1601! This is one Kenmore machine that seems to be slightly overshadowed by the venerable model 1802. That’s unfortunate because they are both fantastic high quality and well made sewing machines. Given the 1601 is a center homing needle machine and otherwise nearly identical to the 1802, I think it actually has anContinue reading “Restoration of a 1969/1970 Kenmore Model 158.16011 Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Re-Lubricating the Gear Case on a Kenmore Model 158 Series Sewing Machine

If you have a vintage Kenmore 158.somthing sewing machine, this tutorial applies to your machine. There is lots of information about maintenance oiling and cleaning your machine. This regular maintenance should not be ignored, and if done regularly will extend the lifespan of your Kenmore to near infinity… well, a long time. But what aboutContinue reading “A Tutorial – Re-Lubricating the Gear Case on a Kenmore Model 158 Series Sewing Machine”

Building a Craftsman Quality Select Pine Sewing Machine Base for a Full Size Kenmore Sewing Machine

Fortunately for us, most Kenmore sewing machines were either provided with a cabinet or a portable sewing machine case. Also fortunately for us, the plastic cases that Kenmore used have proven to be very durable. Even after 35 or 40 years, the many Kenmore cases I have seen are in good shape. Sure, there mayContinue reading “Building a Craftsman Quality Select Pine Sewing Machine Base for a Full Size Kenmore Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1974-75 Kenmore Model 158.14301 Sewing Machine

This is not the first 158.1430 I have restored. I’ve done a few. The 1430, and it’s kissing cousin the 158.1410, are in my opinion one of the best full size all purpose garment making sewing machine Kenmore produced in their long list of 158 series sewing machines. That’s why I am always on theContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1974-75 Kenmore Model 158.14301 Sewing Machine”

Building a Craftsman Quality Oak Sewing Machine Base for a Full Size Singer Sewing Machine

Old black vintage Singer sewing machines are a testament to the concept of quality lasting over time. Every Singer restoration convinces me of that. Like their machines, Singer also built high quality cabinets for their machines, and their portable Bentwood cases are still in circulation in good condition today… I’m talking 100 years or more.Continue reading “Building a Craftsman Quality Oak Sewing Machine Base for a Full Size Singer Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1956 Singer Model 15-125 Sewing Machine… Mint Green?

This restoration is for a Singer Model 15-125 with serial number AM457278 manufactured on March 8, 1956. Under the surface, the model 15-125 is the same machine as it’s model 15-91 predecessor manufactured from 1932’s until 1956. Mechanically, there is no difference between the two. They both use the Singer PH Potted motor, both areContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1956 Singer Model 15-125 Sewing Machine… Mint Green?”

Restoration of a Vintage 1970-71 Kenmore Model 158.1601

Kenmores of this vintage are great sewing machines. Often understated, they are very popular among folks that know Kenmore branded for what they are… durable all metal sewing machines with a wealth of features suited for just about any sewing task imaginable. If there is anything I have learned from working on these machines, isContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1970-71 Kenmore Model 158.1601”

Restoration of an Antique Singer Model 15K “Sphinx” Sewing Machine

This is going to be an interesting restoration. It’s an antique Singer model 15K made in January or June of 1918. Think about that for a moment. What was the world like in 1918? History records that World War I was almost over and the Spanish flu pandemic had recently emerged. Considering this machine wasContinue reading “Restoration of an Antique Singer Model 15K “Sphinx” Sewing Machine”

Restoration of Carole’s 1950 Vintage Singer 201-2… New Paint and Decals

So, this post is a little different from my other restoration blogs. In essence, it is a year long journey of starts and stops. Of finding difficult to find parts, and finally completing the restoration of this 1950 Singer 201-2. Here’s the story… I purchased this 201 for my Wife Carole with the intention ofContinue reading “Restoration of Carole’s 1950 Vintage Singer 201-2… New Paint and Decals”

Restoration of a 1948 Vintage Singer Model 201-2 Sewing Machine

Once again I find myself in front of a Singer 201-2 sewing machine. I also have a cup of coffee that I am nursing as I evaluate it… yep, coffee and sewing machine restoration goes together like peas and carrots. I always enjoy going over these machines to figure out what they need to beContinue reading “Restoration of a 1948 Vintage Singer Model 201-2 Sewing Machine”

A Simple (But in Depth) Comparison – The Difference’s Between a Singer 201-2 and a Singer 15-91

I have seen this topic more than once… Folks comparing the Singer Model 201-2 to the Singer Model 15-91. problem is, for many of the comparisons the information is not complete enough to be useful, or at least the comparison is not “apples to apples”. I thought that I would weigh in and give youContinue reading “A Simple (But in Depth) Comparison – The Difference’s Between a Singer 201-2 and a Singer 15-91”

A Tutorial – Selecting the Proper Sewing Machine Needle is the Key to Success

I have been seeing a lot of debate over this topic recently and thought that I would weigh in to simplify the topic… at least from my point of view. While this topic can get much more in depth, I am taking the “50,000 foot approach” and looking at the subject to boil it downContinue reading “A Tutorial – Selecting the Proper Sewing Machine Needle is the Key to Success”

Restoration of a 1952 Vintage Singer Model 201-2 Sewing Machine – A Gift for Pat

This restoration is for a Singer model 201-2 with serial number AL293805. It was one of fifteen thousand 201’s commissioned for manufacture on December 18, 1952 and it has a story… actually it has two stories. The first is its history. This 201 was purchased new and given by a man as a gift toContinue reading “Restoration of a 1952 Vintage Singer Model 201-2 Sewing Machine – A Gift for Pat”

A Tutorial – Replacing the Bobbin Hook Race Felt on a Singer Model 66 and 99 Sewing Machine

This post is intended to clarify the procedure for replacing the small red felt found in the bobbin case of a Singer model 66 or model 99 sewing machine. I have seen posts on this topic that tampers with the thread clearance mechanism and while accomplishing the task, disturbs a critical adjustment in the mechanismContinue reading “A Tutorial – Replacing the Bobbin Hook Race Felt on a Singer Model 66 and 99 Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Restoring a Singer 201-2 or Singer 15-91 Balance Wheel

Restore a balance wheel? What in the world does that even mean? Well, I just completed a tutorial on restoring a Singer potted motor. As I got to the end, it dawned on me that the process naturally incuded removing and reinstalling the balance wheel. Well, the balance wheel on these two machines is notContinue reading “A Tutorial – Restoring a Singer 201-2 or Singer 15-91 Balance Wheel”

Restoration of a 1925 Vintage Singer Model 66 “Red Eye” Sewing Machine

This restoration is for a Singer 66 Red Eye. I’ve been looking to do one of these for a while, but I needed a machine that had decent decals. If you look at the closely at decorative and complex colorful decals, you will see what I mean. There is a lot of detail in theContinue reading “Restoration of a 1925 Vintage Singer Model 66 “Red Eye” Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1925 Singer Model 15-30 “Tiffany” Sewing Machine

This restoration is for a beautiful Singer sewing machine. Made in 1925, this Singer model 15 is a jewel. The “Tiffany” decals, also referred to as “Gingerbread” decals, are in excellent condition. Sure, there are a few places that could use some attention, but these will be addressed in the restoration. Everything about this machineContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1925 Singer Model 15-30 “Tiffany” Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a “Pink” Atlas Precision Sewing Machine

There is something about these pink Atlas machines that folks love. For many, it is the retro styling and distinctive color. For me, it is the smooth running and the high quality of it’s stitch and manufacture. All in all and between us, it is a win-win and this Atlas has something about it thatContinue reading “Restoration of a “Pink” Atlas Precision Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Restoration of a Vintage Singer Model 201-2 and 15-91 “Potted” Motor

First a picture for those wondering what a Singer “potted” motor is… A potted motor a direct gear drive motor where the motor housing is attached to the back of a so equipped Singer sewing machine. The motor drives the sewing mechanism via a gear on the balance wheel. The motor case protrudes from theContinue reading “A Tutorial – Restoration of a Vintage Singer Model 201-2 and 15-91 “Potted” Motor”

A Tutorial – Cleaning an Antique Singer Model 15K Sewing Machine

I previously posted a blog on cleaning a vintage Singer sewing machine, but I did not show you what kind of results you can expect to obtain. Well, I thought that this Singer Model 15K was a perfect example to show you. Manufactured in 1918 this machine has achieved antique status. It is kind ofContinue reading “A Tutorial – Cleaning an Antique Singer Model 15K Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Kenmore Sewing Machine Cases… There is a Surprise Inside!

Kenmore sewing machine cases… they are very durable and I consider them to be the best vintage sewing machine cases out there. Even after decades, they have held up with no signs of aging. This case is from 1968-69. It has some battle scars but despite these, the sewing machine was protected. The case isContinue reading “A Tutorial – Kenmore Sewing Machine Cases… There is a Surprise Inside!”

A Tutorial – Restoring a Vintage Singer Grease Wick Sewing Machine Motor

I have received several comments from readers on how to rewire their old Vintage Singer sewing machine. The need for this is all too common on the 1950 and earlier vintage machines. While the sewing machine itself is built to last neigh on forever, wires do not. Typically, the wires become brittle and the insulationContinue reading “A Tutorial – Restoring a Vintage Singer Grease Wick Sewing Machine Motor”

A Tutorial – Removing The Balance Wheel on a Kenmore 158 Series Sewing Machine

I received a comment from a gentleman asking for information on how to remove the balance wheel from his Kenmore 158.1755. I can see how this seemingly simple task is mystifying, as the balance wheel becomes stuck and trapped by the motor belt before it clears the machine. Thinking that this blog would help him,Continue reading “A Tutorial – Removing The Balance Wheel on a Kenmore 158 Series Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1941 Singer Model 66

Today I am restoring a 1941 Singer model 66. This restoration has an interesting story. Not the machine. it’s story is well known… anyone who has, or knows someone who has a model 66 probably knows a little bit about the machine, or at least made the observation that it is a solid, heavy, andContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1941 Singer Model 66”

Restoration of a Vintage Kenmore Model 158.14101

Up for restoration is another Kenmore! This model 1410 was manufactured in 1972-73 and is an all metal machine. I like this machine for several reasons. It is powerful with a 1,2 amp motor and double reduction belt drive, it has 11 stitches, including a good selection of stretch stitches and even a decorative “eyeContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage Kenmore Model 158.14101”

Restoration of a Vintage 1950 Singer 201-2

This restoration is for the legendary 201-2… perhaps the finest straight stitch machine ever produced… anywhere. Eh… that’s a very bold statement to make Skippy… To back this up, I can say that my research on the 201 generally draws the same conclusion (Compared with the Necchi Supernova was a tie…). My personal experience isContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1950 Singer 201-2”

Restoration of a 1947 Vintage Singer Model 15-90

This restoration is a Singer Model 15-90… it is the same machine as the 15-91 but with an external motor. I have done several of these machines, both 15-91’s and 15-90’s. In my opinion, aside from the 15-91’s direct gear drive potted motor versus the 15-90’s belt drive external motor, there is no difference inContinue reading “Restoration of a 1947 Vintage Singer Model 15-90”

Restoration of a 1958 Vintage Singer Model 185K

There is no question among the folks I have talked to regarding the Singer 185K… all agree that it is a “cute” machine. It’s olive (some say mint green) and sea foam colors are very complimentary to the style of the machine. First introduced in 1958, the Singer 185 is a restyled and re-bodied SingerContinue reading “Restoration of a 1958 Vintage Singer Model 185K”

Restoration of a 1975 Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1730

The sewing machine I am restoring now is a Kenmore model 158.1730. Kenmore’s are probably the easiest machines to restore. They are easy to disassemble for cleaning. Most of the Kenmore’s I have come across seldom need disassembly of the drive components, sometimes I do it because it makes it easier to clean, not becauseContinue reading “Restoration of a 1975 Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1730”

Restoration of a Vintage White “Stretch Stitches” Model 935

This restoration is a White “Stretch Stitches” sewing machine. To be honest, this restoration has been put off for a while due to my concern over the machines suitability for restoration. When I got the machine some months ago, I thought that it would be a “perfect” candidate. The sewing mechanisms were clean, bright, andContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage White “Stretch Stitches” Model 935″

Vintage All Metal Domestic Sewing Machines – Are They Really “Heavy Duty” or “Semi-Industrial”?

Here in the United States I see an abundance of listings from people offering domestic vintage all metal (and not all metal) sewing machines where a claim is made that they are “heavy-duty” or “semi-industrial”. Really? Is either of these statements true? To narrow the discussion, this applies to sewing machines made for the domesticContinue reading “Vintage All Metal Domestic Sewing Machines – Are They Really “Heavy Duty” or “Semi-Industrial”?”

Restoration of a Vintage Singer Model 191U

This restoration is a Singer Model 191U. The 191U model has an interesting history… you see, it was actually manufactured by Janome and was badged as a Singer! The Singer model 191U was made in Japan between 1957 and 1962. I can’t pin the exact date of this one. It uses a class 15 sideContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage Singer Model 191U”

Restoration of a Vintage 1973 Kenmore Model 158.18032 Sewing Machine

This restoration is for a Kenmore Model 158.18032 sewing machine. Often times, I find that Kenmore’s of this vintage sew remarkably well despite the cosmetic appearance, or the outward appearance of the mechanical linkages and complex assemblies Kenmore stuffed in these machines. Like most Kenmores built in the 70’s, the machine offers a good selectionContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1973 Kenmore Model 158.18032 Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1956 Singer Model 15-75 Sewing Machine

On the bench for restoration is a Singer model 15-75. Many are familiar with the Singer model 15-125, and the 15-75 is identical in every respect except the 15-125 uses a direct gear “potted” motor, and the 15-75 has an external motor and is belt driven. I am a big fan of the Singer 201-2Continue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1956 Singer Model 15-75 Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Vintage Singer External Motors … Do They Use Grease, Or Do They Use Oil?

I have recently seen multiple forum posts on lubricating Singer vintage external motors. To most folks, the obvious sign that a Singer motor is lubricated with grease is the presence of small tubes at the end of each end of the motor. While many Singer motors were fitted with tubes and wicks for filling withContinue reading “A Tutorial – Vintage Singer External Motors … Do They Use Grease, Or Do They Use Oil?”

Restoration of a Vintage 1977 Kenmore Model 158.19412 Convertible Sewing Machine

This is the second Kenmore 158.1941 I have had in the shop for restoration. The Kenmore model 158.1941 series of sewing machines is at the top of my list of “convertible” sewing machines for several reasons, not the least of which is it’s all metal construction. Also worthy of mention is the 1.0 amp motorContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1977 Kenmore Model 158.19412 Convertible Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1960’s White Model 1563 All Metal Sewing Machine

Up on the bench is a White model 1563 sewing machine. One observation I have made in my restoration efforts on vintage sewing machines of different manufacture is that White makes an excellent machine. That’s not particularly surprising, since White has been manufacturing sewing machines almost as long as Singer. In fact, around the turnContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1960’s White Model 1563 All Metal Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1969 Kenmore 158.13033 Sewing Machine

This restoration is for a Kenmore 158.13033 all metal 1969 vintage sewing machine. The 1303 was one of three variants… 13031, 13032, and the 13033. The machine body styling and sewing mechanism is the same. The only visible difference is the styling of the control knobs. This machine is a custom order, and the CustomerContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1969 Kenmore 158.13033 Sewing Machine”

Buying a Sewing Machine Online? – Protect Yourself With These Simple Steps…

You are on eBay and you find the sewing machine of your youth, fond memories flood your mind with emotions of carefree happiness and content… and you want to own it. Maybe it’s just like your Mom’s or Grandmother’s old vintage sewing machine that you learned to sew on but was lost by some badContinue reading “Buying a Sewing Machine Online? – Protect Yourself With These Simple Steps…”

Restoration of a “Pink and White” White Model 656

Okay, so did the title read a little weird? Kind of sounded funny to me too, but it is a vintage all metal White model 656 sewing machine and it is Pink and White. It is also feature rich with a variety of 27 stitch patterns… 14 for pattern stitching, 10 of which are stretchContinue reading “Restoration of a “Pink and White” White Model 656″

Free Motion Embroidery… What can Your Machine Do?

Free motion embroidery. To begin, I have to confess upfront that I restore vintage sewing machines… I don’t sew on vintage sewing machines. I would, but I don’t. The most sewing I do is balancing and tuning a machine after restoration. I then pass it over to my Wife, who loves to sew, and sheContinue reading “Free Motion Embroidery… What can Your Machine Do?”

Restoration of a Vintage 1940 Singer 201-2

If all you need from a sewing machine is beautifully formed straight stitch, the Singer 201-2 is a fantastic machine to sew with… period. There are people that consider the Singer 201, in any of it’s variants, to be the best domestic straight stitch sewing machine ever manufactured, and there is much to be saidContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1940 Singer 201-2”

Restoration of a Vintage 1956 Singer Model 221 “Featherweight”

This project is the detailed restoration of a Singer Model 221 “Featherweight” sewing machine. Before we begin, this machine deserves a little background history. To start with, the Singer model 221 Featherweight is in a class by itself. It is 1/2 the size of a full size domestic sewing machine, and it is a marvelContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1956 Singer Model 221 “Featherweight””

Restoration of an Antique Victorian 1894 Singer Model 15-30 Sewing Machine

The Singer Model 15 is probably the most recognized sewing machine on planet Earth. Introduced in 1879, it was in constant production thru 1958. It is still manufactured in it’s original style in other countries such as China, India, and even Mexico. Some consider the model 15 to be the strongest domestic sewing machine SingerContinue reading “Restoration of an Antique Victorian 1894 Singer Model 15-30 Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a “Pink Atlas” Precision Straight Stitch Sewing Machine

This project is the restoration of a Pink Atlas Precision Sewing Machine… This Atlas sewing machine was manufactured in Japan in the late 1950’s by Brother Sewing Machine Company. With it’s distinctive pink color and bold “Atlas” badge displayed on the front and back of the sewing arm, it is a very high quality, heavyContinue reading “Restoration of a “Pink Atlas” Precision Straight Stitch Sewing Machine”

Reconditioning a Vintage All Metal Kenmore Model 158.19412 Convertible Sewing Machine

To start with, the Kenmore model 158.1941 series of sewing machines is at the top of my list of “convertible” sewing machines. The model is among the last of the all metal Kenmores, and certainly the best of their free arm (or as they marketed them… convertible) machines. Manufactured in Japan by the Maruzen SewingContinue reading “Reconditioning a Vintage All Metal Kenmore Model 158.19412 Convertible Sewing Machine”

A Tutorial – Kenmore Upper Tension Assembly… How to Disassemble and Reassemble It the Right Way

This post is a bit more generic. Part of any sewing machine reconditioning involves the complete disassembly, cleaning, and reassembly of the upper tension mechanism. The problem I run across frequently is the improper assembly of the top tension mechanism. How does this happen? There is no way to know the complete history of aContinue reading “A Tutorial – Kenmore Upper Tension Assembly… How to Disassemble and Reassemble It the Right Way”

Restoration of a Vintage All Metal Morse R5L “Super Dial” Straight Stitch Sewing Machine

The Morse R5L “Super Dial” is a precision all metal straight stitch sewing machine manufactured in the late 1950’s to early 1960’s. The body is made of cast iron, and every other part on the machine is made of metal. It is heavy and it is sturdy. The fact that it is in this fineContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage All Metal Morse R5L “Super Dial” Straight Stitch Sewing Machine”

What Lurks Inside – After Complete Reconditioning of a Vintage Sewing Machine

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 thisContinue reading “What Lurks Inside – After Complete Reconditioning of a Vintage Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1956 Singer 301A

This project is the reconditioning of a 1956 Singer 301A, serial number NB0713555. One of my dear customers asked me to find and recondition a 301 or 301A for her. She wanted a machine in excellent condition and I told her that it might take a while to find a 301 with that potential. SheContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1956 Singer 301A”

Servicing and Cleaning a Vintage All-Metal Kenmore Model 158.16011

This project is a Kenmore model 158.16011. Funny how things work, I did not intend on buying this machine… in fact, I thought I was buying a Kenmore model 158.1802! That’s the problem with trying to find the right machines to offer you in our Etsy Shop. I have a list of machines I tryContinue reading “Servicing and Cleaning a Vintage All-Metal Kenmore Model 158.16011”

Cleaning and Servicing a Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1755 All-Metal Sewing Machine

This project is fairly straight forward… Cleaning and servicing a Kenmore model 158.1755. The 158.1755 was manufactured in Japan by the Maruzen Sewing Machine Factory. The production run for the 1755 was between 1970 and 1971. The 1755 machine is a versatile and very forgiving all metal sewing machine. Easy to thread, easy to adjust,Continue reading “Cleaning and Servicing a Vintage Kenmore Model 158.1755 All-Metal Sewing Machine”

Restoration of a Vintage 1952 Singer 15-91 Sewing Machine

The next project is a Singer 15-91 sewing machine born on December 18, 1952. She shares her birthday with 49,999 sisters. If I had to guess, I would say that she was manufactured in Singer’s factory at the North Pole. I am of course kidding, but Singer did have factories all over the world. IContinue reading “Restoration of a Vintage 1952 Singer 15-91 Sewing Machine”