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  1. #1
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    one thread injector that does it all?

    i've started perusing the local thrift shops and craigs lists, for my first ever sewing machine. now i seem to have no real problems zeroing in on a good heavy duty machine ( kinda drawn to the singer 15-91) i expect to be useing this for marine canvas/sails ,camping gearwork, with occasional forays into lighter fabrics. my question is can such a machine do lighter fabrics for some thing like t/u quilts and cothing repairs? or do i really have to have another machine for the light end of the spectrum? thanking all in advance

  2. #2
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by the_gr8t_waldo View Post
    i've started perusing the local thrift shops and craigs lists, for my first ever sewing machine. now i seem to have no real problems zeroing in on a good heavy duty machine ( kinda drawn to the singer 15-91) i expect to be useing this for marine canvas/sails ,camping gearwork, with occasional forays into lighter fabrics. my question is can such a machine do lighter fabrics for some thing like t/u quilts and cothing repairs? or do i really have to have another machine for the light end of the spectrum? thanking all in advance
    All the older machines were designed to work on heavy duty fabrics as well as China Silk which is lighter and flimsier than 1.1 ripstop. That does not mean you can sew one the same way as the other. Tensions will needed to be adjusted. But as far as the fabric is concerned... no sweat.

    The diffuclty comes the other way around where modern machines will often max out on the thicker stuff unless they are geared for the professional or active stitcher who is willing to pay a premium for quality. The issue is generally the quality of the motor and durability of the gears.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

    "Bless you child, when you set out to thread a needle don't hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that's the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t'other way."
    Mrs. Loftus to Huck Finn

    We Don't Sew... We Make Gear! video series

    Important thread injector guidelines especially for Newbies

    Bobbin Tension - A Personal Viewpoint

  3. #3
    gargoyle's Avatar
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    A long arm machine is best for sail work (theres a few members here who do sails), gives room for excess material.

    Probably be better to have a big machine for sailwork and a smaller standard machine for light duty, thin work.

    Like RR said, it'll be a lot of fiddlin' getting tensions readjusted everytime.
    Ambulo tua ambulo.

  4. #4
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    i would much rather get something like a "sailrite" long arm..but the cost is prohibitive. and my intrest is in small sail boats- so i figure that it's doable with the 1591. adjusting the mache down to thin fabric is fine with me.. i'd rather not own any more "stuff" than what i feel necessary. thanks for the replys, guys

  5. #5
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    I'd suggest that you not waste your money & space on a "light weight" machine. I have a very old Singer 127 from around 1912 that I've used regularly for about 45 years. I can sew anything from China silk fancy clothes to harness leather with that one machine! It's all in the needle size and the thread tension, maybe also the feed dog adjustment. That's it! See what RamblinRev says about thread tension adjustment etc.

    I'm not saying you should get a machine anywhere near as old as mine (hard to get parts and service) but I'd definitely look for an oldie that has a strong motor and metal gears (not nylon) especially if you want to do much sail-making. You don't need anything fancy (I can do everything I need with just a straight stitch) though you may find zigzag useful sometimes. Even if you do get a long arm machine later, you'll still be happy with the smaller one as your general-purpose workhorse, and with just a little routine maintenance it will easily last your whole lifetime (and then some).

    Just my two beans!

  6. #6
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    My mom coached me building my first backpack (at age 14) with a home sewing machine. The Machine was clearly inadequate for the job and made it very frustrating. In spite of the frustration I built 2 more on the same machine. Last year (30 years later) I decided to get back into sewing. I bought a Mitsubishi walking foot with reverse on CL for $375. It's a dream to sew thick/multi layer fabric with. I say, if your planning on long runs of thick fabric, the walking foot makes it really enjoyable. Also, I just made my own tarp from a 30d fabric with it so it's good for light stuff as well. Keep your eye on CL.
    Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise:
    Which having no guide, overseer, or ruler,
    Provideth her meat in the summer, and gathereth her food in the harvest.
    Proverbs 6:6-8 KJV

  7. #7
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    ok, it's been some time since the last message, but yesterday i connected with a sewing machine..it's a singer 15-91 mounted in a cabinet. has a foot lever connected to a switch inside of the cabinet. the po had it sitting in an out building, so there's a little bit of surface rust starting. since the machine will be cleaned and checked out, this isn't much of an issue. only one thing is amiss...the cover for the junction box was missing. i'm an electrican so i doubt if this will cause any problems either. the very best thing is that i got it for 20$- the machine will be stored untill i knock out the outdoor summer projects around the house.

  8. #8
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    Here is a source for some great information on your 15-91. Jenny has a good article on refurbishing the 15-91 and has parts available including the 3 pin terminal body (junction block) and new wiring harness. You will find a down loadable Singer Manual as well.
    http://blog.sew-classic.com/2008/10/...ne-review.aspx

    Singer has their Adjusters Manual available. I'm not suggesting making any timing adjustments, but it will show you how to read the marks to see if it is in time, plus it has good pictures on how to disassemble the motor, wiring diagram, oiling the machine, etc.
    http://parts.singerco.com/IPinstManuals/15-91.pdf

    Andy

  9. #9
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    thanks hilborne, i took a cursory look at the sites and have already figured out the what i though was a missing cover is actually where the power cord connects with the machine- new one runs about 11$s the costs are mounting, but then i already knew that..thanks again

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