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  1. #1
    robv60's Avatar
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    A couple of Singers, possible first machine.

    I have ran across a potential good deal locally for a couple of sewing machines. The models are a Singer Stylist 457 and a Singer Stylist 778 both older machines. Does anyone know anything about these two machines? Would they be capable of sewing webbing and most gear making? They seem to be in good working order although Id really need to check them out personally to be sure. But, for $20 (not sure if this is for each or the pair)....should I just go for it?

  2. #2
    Bubba's Avatar
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    I say go for both even at $20 each. Since thay are older they probably just need a little TLC. They should have no problem with sewing any gear you want. The guy at my local shop said to worry more about using a strong enough needle vs worrying about the machine.
    Don't let life get in the way of living.

  3. #3
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Check my guidelines thread in my sig for going to ook at them. Other folks seem to have found it helpful.
    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."
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  4. #4
    robv60's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramblinrev View Post
    Check my guidelines thread in my sig for going to ook at them. Other folks seem to have found it helpful.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I had forgotten about that post! I read it a while back but like most of the GOOD info that has made it into my brain, it had been pushed out by useless material. Limited storage space in the ol' noggin apparently. Again, thanks!

  5. #5
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    The Singer Stylist 457 and Touch & Sew 778 models come from a time when plastic gears replaced steel gears and at 40 plus years old, the life of these gears is limited. Replacement gears are generally available at $11-$28 each plus shipping. Installation is extra.

    These machines usually sew very nicely but the question is always "will I get 2 years or 5 years out of it before a gear breaks?" Sewing webbing and other heavy use will shorten the life.

    Short version...get them cheap or free and use them while they last.

    If you do get one...open it up and do an absolutely thorough job of cleaning all packed in grease and lint out of the gears to get a little extra life from them.

  6. #6
    robv60's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gmcttr View Post
    "will I get 2 years or 5 years out of it before a gear breaks?" Sewing webbing and other heavy use will shorten the life.
    From what little I have been able to find about these machines, that's exactly what I was afraid of. I would like to start making my own gear and need to start somewhere but I just can not justify the cost of a substantial machine right now. I figure, with my budget, I can buy an old machine of decent quality that needs some TLC that may break in short order or buy a new one that isn't as good in the long run and.....will break in short order. For the price of a good, new machine that will last and be an investment, I could darn near buy most of the gear I want to make. I may need to take my chances on an old "banger" for now. Thanks for the honest advice - I appreciate it and it forces me to look at my options a little more clearly rather than making a brash decision based off of my excitement alone. So far, I've gotten by with hand sewing a few things. The quality of my sewing speaks for itself, ha ha. (I definitely need some glasses) It isn't pretty but so far has held up fine. That being said, I shudder at the thought of hand sewing some mesh snake skins and and an entire tarp. I think I will drop by to visit the folks selling them and see what info I can glean as to the quality of the 457 and see what happens.

  7. #7
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    Sounds like a plan. I have a T&S 648 that was passed down to me and I used several years before breaking a gear hemming blue jeans (that doubled over flat felled seam is a killer). Got a new gear from TNT and his installation guide was worth the money.

  8. #8
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Go to a local sewing machine repair shop and inquire about used machines. Tell the guy what you are looking for, and that it does not have to be a collectible. Then if he has anything, see if he wants to dicker a bit on price. That way you get a machine that is cleaned and tuned for probably not a lot of money. The collectible issue is important because there are some classic machines that are worth a great deal on the collectors market. The owner is not going to pass one of the those along at a discount. But if the machine has been sitting in inventory for a while... the owner might jump at a chance to unload it to a good home.

    The other option is to ask and female relative or family you might have, heck even neighbors or organizational memebers. I'll bet you someone has a machine in their closet, basement or attic that you could get for next to nothing.
    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

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