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  1. #1
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    Old used sewing machine advice

    I am going to get this sewing machine that is very old from my mom, so I can start making my own gear! Woo hoo!

    My question is, what would you advise me to do to get this machine up and running? Should I just plug it in, and see what it can do, or would you advise taking it to a shop to get it checked out? I am a total novice to sewing, and I am not sure that I would know what to look for...what are your thoughts?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Walking Bear's Avatar
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    I think that I would get it, plug it in, give it a good dose of machine oil, blow out the excess oil and try to sew with it. If everthing works good, your good to go. If there are problems then you may consider the shop. If you go to the shop take some samples of the type of fabric that you will be working with so that they can adjust it and show you how to adjust for different fabrics.

  3. #3
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    I would plug it in and give it a whirl too. After that I would take it in and get it a tune up. If it doesn't have a manual, ask to be shown where to oil it and how much/often.
    Is that too much to ask? Girls with frikkin' lasers on their heads?
    The hanger formly known as "hammock engineer".

  4. #4
    Senior Member Preacha Man's Avatar
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    You might try this site here. Amanda gets stuff from this guy, and he really nows how to help.

    Hope this helps,
    Dwight
    Psalm 19:1-3 "The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard."

  5. #5
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    Thanks, everyone!

    So, I would like to do the things from that site, but I am completely unfamiliar with the parts! Oh well, I guess I will have to learn them sometime, anyhow...

    I am pretty sure it is really old, so I think going through all the steps preacherman's link described wouldn't be a bad idea...plus it can be a tutorial for me to learn the parts before I try using it.

    Now, on to contemplating all the things I am going to make!...

  6. #6
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    Exclamation Update!

    I recieved my sewing machine from my mom in the parking lot of the resturaunt we met at...a lady passed by and said, "You know, I've never seen this before!"

    The machine ended up being a Sewmore 404 from the mid-fifty's made in Japan. It only does straight stitching. I took it to a sewing machine repair shop the next morning, and scared the older folks working there with my enthusiasm! I am sure they thought I was a bit odd coming in with this ancient machine and a big grin on my face, but then I guess I am a bit odd...oh well!

    After a few days, I called to find out how the machine was doing. The man who is working on it told me the motor is running, so that is what I was hoping to hear! The wires on the light were very frayed, and he is looking into reparing it. If not reparable, I will replace it...

    I just wanted to tell you all about my experience aquiring this machine. One question I do have is:

    I notice on Jeff's DownhammockV2, he uses zig-zag. I have also seen that stitch on the Mountain Laurel Tarps. Will the fact that the machine only straight stitches limit me from any projects gear-wise?

  7. #7
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    The only time I use zig zag is to do bar tacks. I could easily get around that by usine box stitch in its palce. I think You will be fine. I would think Jeff used zig zag for his down hammock to minimize the perferation effect on the body.
    Peace Dutch
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  8. #8
    Senior Member dufus934's Avatar
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    I would take it into a shop. I was also a total newbie when I started to poke around here, and it didn't take long to learn. What I did do was take my machine (I also got an old one from a relative) into a shop and get it worked on. It took about 40 dollars to get it timed, oiled and tuned up. When I went to pick it up, they gave me a pretty lengthy lesson about how to use everything on the machine (I also picked up some guterman's (sp?) thread for $1/spool at 675yds per spool). Thats just my experience, and it sounds like I'm in the minority. Good Luck!
    God Bless,
    Kyle
    willky1@gmail.com

    "Fearless warriors in a picket fence, reckless abandon wrapped in common sense
    Deep water faith in the shallow end and we are caught in the middle
    With eyes wide open to the differences, the God we want and the God who is
    But will we trade our dreams for His or are we caught in the middle" - Casting Crowns

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by dufus934 View Post
    I would take it into a shop. I was also a total newbie when I started to poke around here, and it didn't take long to learn. What I did do was take my machine (I also got an old one from a relative) into a shop and get it worked on. It took about 40 dollars to get it timed, oiled and tuned up. When I went to pick it up, they gave me a pretty lengthy lesson about how to use everything on the machine (I also picked up some guterman's (sp?) thread for $1/spool at 675yds per spool). Thats just my experience, and it sounds like I'm in the minority. Good Luck!
    Exactly my experience!

    I thought about it, and I wouldn't know how to oil the machine in the manner the above link described because I was (still am!) unfamiliar with the parts of the machine, and I didn't know how to sew anyway! Also, the machine was very dusty from years of being stored away, unused.

    It was well worth the $50 to have it running and set perfectly. As you said, all the basics about how to thread the machine, load the bobbin, change tension and stitch length were explained to me by the man who fixed my machine. Plus, he gave me info on a place you could go for free sewing advice twice a week! Score!

  10. #10
    Senior Member dufus934's Avatar
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    Nar,

    Thats awesome! Glad you got some stuff figured out, and good luck with the gear making!
    God Bless,
    Kyle
    willky1@gmail.com

    "Fearless warriors in a picket fence, reckless abandon wrapped in common sense
    Deep water faith in the shallow end and we are caught in the middle
    With eyes wide open to the differences, the God we want and the God who is
    But will we trade our dreams for His or are we caught in the middle" - Casting Crowns

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