Featherweight Fanatics Archives



From: "gladys sheetz" 
Subject: 401 report
Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 11:44:29 -0500

Fw Friends
I have 7 responses to querry about 401A owners.
Marilyn  -- Tx
Karen --- Tuscon
Marilyn   --Ohio
Helen Marie--
Barbara   -- E. Tx.
 one I missed saving the name for 
Hope I didn't miss anyone. 
Maybe we can make a collection of trouble shooting tips for the 401 to
share .
They are such good machines it would be a shame to leave one sitting in the
corner or go to the graveyard because the owner can't get it to sew.  I
have to thank the helpful ones on this list for their suggestions that
helped me get mine in working order.
I am still looking for a FW.  
    Gladys  (In.)   

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 15:37:54 EDT
Subject: Missing Person

Is Millie MacKenzie ok?  Can't get through to website, Emails not answered.  
I owe her something on trade.

I am embarrassed,

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 15:01:26 -0500
Subject: Re: FW Fanatics 4/23/1999

>   I have my DH grandmothers 15-91.  I was told that a traveling salesman came 
> the farm, and she traded in a treadle for this 'modern' electric machine,
> somewhere around 1952.  at least one of her sisters did the same out in rural
> Carthage Tennessee area.       Christina

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 18:58:29 -0400
From: "Judith C. Price" 
Subject: Ford SM

There was a nice interview in the car section of the Ottawa paper today
with the curator of transportation at Canada's National Museum of
Science and Technology.  When asked what car he would buy himself if
knee-deep in a mid-life crisis he replied that it would probably be a
Morgan or a Singer.  My DH groaned, "There's a CAR!?"

Jacqui wrote:
> Read your story with interest as I was in a thrift shop yesterday and came
> across a nice looking machine, but with the odd name of "Ford"!  I did a
> double take on that one.  Wouldn't that be an interesting item to add to a
> "Ford" collection!

Judith near Ottawa, Canada

Handcrank: Jones Family CS, Frister & Rossman, Singer VS3/28, 66, 99-13
Treadle: Singer 127, 15-88, White VS
Electric: Singer 99-31, 128, 185, 192 (Spartan), 201-3, 221, 301A
Recent species: elna air electronic SU, 5-thread serger

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 17:27:11 -0500
From: Chuck44
Subject: A Question

	Hi Sue,
I have a friend that lives in Arkansas that is trying to find parts
for an antique sewing machine.
She says it is a "Bruce" treadle machine and was last manufactured 
by the White company. She does not have a computer, so she asked
me to see if I could find anything on the Web.
She saw your organization mentioned in "Traditional Quiltworks" magazine.
Could you please send me your snail mail address (and, or phone number)
so I can give it to her or, point me in the right direction to try to help her?


				   Chuck in Missouri

From: "Woodstock Sewing Centre" 
Subject: 631g
Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 07:08:31 -0400

Dear fws; we bought a load of stuff from a little husqvarna dealer =
yesterday, one of the items was a singer 631g which is a GERMAN made =
singer slant needle , all steel gears , drop in bobbin , gear drive =
motor, FREE ARM and also has a selection of discs, its in about cond 8 =
but will clean up nice, its looks good and also it has the original box, =
yes the little old lady saved the box from 1965 and kept it all these =
years. all the attachments and believe the book is here. The 630 was the =
last of the really well built singer, all steel, slant needle, these =
machines were really good, last year a mennonite family left for boliva, =
they asked me for advice on what machine, we sold them two 201 singer =
treadles, and for an electric they use a generator, a like new 631g they =
would use for zig zag and etc. They were mennonites that can use =
electricity, but they were moving to such a remote area, it would take =
days by train to the nearest city. So it gives you a idea what machines =
that i feel are really good ones, if i was going to the other side of =
the earth the 201 would be my choice. mikeh and the 631g as a electric.=20
well its been a long week and looking forward to rest this weekend. =
going to see a super collector this weekend down by the point, so will =
report what goodies that i have seen when i return mikeh

http://www.oxford.net/~mikeh      =20

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 05:39:40 -0400
From: Mark & Linda Heminway 
Subject: cloth covered wiring

Thanks for the tip, I'll try that kind of place.  It would be nice to
have the wiring that would have been original to this kind of machine
vs. the newer looking type.
 > > My question is, has anyone found a source for cloth covered
> >  wiring (that is NEW and SAFE) for machine restorations?  I would like to
> >  be able to have the "look" that machines like this had without the
> >  dangers of the old wiring.
> Hi,
> I know I've seen the old style wiring in some catalog recently.  It might
> have been with lamp parts.  I can't find my Van Dykes catalog right now, but
> it might have been in there.
> I've also seen new lamp parts in a couple a couple of antique malls.
> Gail R
> in gloomy NE Wis

From: "Zoback" 
Subject: sighting
Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 07:43:52 -0400

Hi Guys!!!  I'm trading in my Elna 6004 for a Pfaff 7550 and while I was at
the shop I saw a featherweight in the cardtable wonderful condition had the
carrying case all the attachments and even the 1.5 oz. oil can price is
499.00 for all. The place is in Pitman, NJ (South Jersey) if anyone is
interested. Oh it was a 1941 model also.  Just thought I'd pass this
along................Happy Hunting.......frish down in cowtown

From: "Nancy" 
Subject: FW
Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 07:04:19 -0400

Hi, Bill Mitchell's thought process must have rubbed to me in SW Michigan. I
was just thinking as I read about it, oh if only that were true. Oh yea of
little faith cause  within two days I had 1 phone call and  an E-mail that
is bringing me 3 FW's and 1 FW table. You made a believer out of me Bill.
We saw a SF badge FW at Lancaster what a privilege, know how rare they are.
The machine is not for sale but the gentleman did let us take pictures of
Singer dating. I always chuckle when I hear of the various dating and
machine model discrepancies that Singer gives out. I have had a couple of
FW's that I called Singer about and were told that they are 201s. I look at
my little FW and my 201 side by side and think well wonder if this one
fathered the little one sitting next to it?
Guess we just have to realize that these records were not accurate, are hard
to read because who would have thought that these little machines that you
couldn't give away when the Zig Zag machine were introduced would become so
popular. We use Krisi's survey in our FW Care workshop as a part of
recognizing the different parts of the machine and of course dating them. We
collect the surveys in the hopes that someday Krisi's data will become more
accurate than Singers. There are some great pictures to help you incase you
have trouble figuring it out.
You can fill out a survey at.
Thank you Krisi for the time you spend on this survey. Nancy
still looking for the illusive 201 needle plate.
Traveling Featherweight
Care Instructors
Bill and Nancy Berhrman
Make note of new E-mail
New Web Page

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 21:46:34 -0700
From: T&JWilson 
Subject: shipping machines

I have found that our local UPS customer counter has
gotten very particular about the items that  they ship.
They had a skyrocket in claims and that changed the way
they react to packaging.  They require-locally- that  machines
be double boxed.  That usually makes them oversized whch
gets you a 30 lb. charge.  I hope I don't jinx myself when I
say that I have shipped lots of machines through UPS and
never had a problem. They actually can be real helpful if you
get to know them.  Their have a booklet with all their rules they
sent me after I made some inquiries to their 800 #.  (I wish
I could find it ; )  It is worth the trouble to pack a special
machine properly.  Even if it is insured the money can't replace a
vintage machine.  It is gone forever.   Taria

Please visit my web page and parts drawer at:

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 20:13:38 -0400
Subject: Featherweight machine
From: cslgt

I am trying to locate a Featherweight machine for my mother in FL.  If
anyone knows of one of these machines for sale in either the Fairfield
County, CT area or the Tampa, FL area I would appreciate hearing from
you.  Thank you.  Linda T.

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 13:27:26 +0100
From: graham forsdyke 
Subject: Re: FW Fanatics 4/23/1999

To Jacqui

Ford were made ny National and badged for a retailer named Ford - nothing
to do with Henry.

To Midori

Don't worry about shipping. If you buy from a reputable dealer with good
insurance and a money-back guarantee  you have nothing to worry about.

To Bekibee re Singer 66 and 99

Quite a few minor differences over the years but basically the 99 with its
12 1/2 inch bed is two inches shorter than the 66.

Graham Forsdyke

Date: Fri, 23 Apr 1999 20:28:39 -0700
From: Nancine Pike 
Subject: Re: FW Fanatics 4/22/1999

I found a centennial 201!!  In a treadle but not a treadle cabinet (?).  It 
needs work,
but what else does my DH need to do while I'm out hunting for FW's??  (I hope 
doesn't read this one!  Haha!)


From: "Sehoy L. Welshofer" 
Subject: Project for guild
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 07:03:43 -0500

Elizabeth wrote:
What I would like to ask you, my fellow quilting feathers, is for some fresh
ideas.  This is an old guild and they have, over the years, done just about
everything.  Many of the members are bored and come to the meetings, but,
unfortunately, don't ever participate.
Elizabeth - I'm president of our guild this year, and was vice president (in
charge of programs) for 2 years before that. One idea that I would suggest
is the Stack and Slash Crazy Quilt as a guild work shop. We just did it at
our retreat this month, and it was a great success. It was the Friday night
workshop, and most of the 30 members present at retreat got their tops
finished that night! We'll soon have some photos on our web site.
Right now there's some from other readers. The directions (can be taught in
2 minutes!) are on our web site. Enjoy!

Sehoy Welshofer
President, Lakeshore Quilters
Editor, Web Threads

Visit Web Threads, the Newsletter for Net Savvy Quilters at:

Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 21:47:25 -0400
From: Philip Stieg 
Subject: my new feathwerweight

I would very much like to be included  on yiour maillist for
featherweight owners.
Having JUST purchased my featherweight today, I am enjoying reading all
the info devoted to it on the web tonight.
Thanks so much!

Rosemary Stieg......     

Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 10:08:08
From: Tim Van Meppelen Scheppink 
Subject: Re:  Jim's story of "no name" machines


Read your story with interest as I was in a thrift shop yesterday and came
across a nice looking machine, but with the odd name of "Ford"!  I did a
double take on that one.  Wouldn't that be an interesting item to add to a
"Ford" collection!  I'd have bought it for my brother's 40th birthday, but
he'd rather push a Chevy than drive a Ford :-)!!  It was one of those blue
metallic machines with a decal pattern all around the bottom.  It must have
come out of a cabinet and there was not case.  A sticker said "more parts"
which turned out to the be the foot pedal!  I left it there as it was
priced at $44.99.  Maybe this was one of those machines you talked about Jim.

Jacqui in Canada

Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 08:10:43 -0400 (EDT)
From: Marilyn Root 
Subject: white FWs

Pat, congratulations on getting your white FW.  The badges were stick-on
paper and some did not stay on the machines.  At least 2 of us that I know
of have called Singer and had the machine misidentified.  This white one
was my first one and the call unnerved me.  Now we know that some Singer
records are faulty.  The 2 that I know of were both EV #s made in 1964.

Someone was asking about 401 owners.  I got mine at an auction and it came
with its own table.  It is the first slant needle I have used.  I love it.
 I made a queen size quilt on it (Around the Twist) so I know it well now.  I
have a feeling that I had to clean lint out of it more often than on any
other sm, but it is a wonderful machine.

I am a big fan of the tables.  I am lucky enough to have them for the 401,
301, and 221, and those are the machines (along with the 66 treadle) that I
seem to want to work with.  Nice height, good space for all your tools.

On another subject, I see many notes from first time Fanatics who are
looking for their first FW.  It might help if they would include their
location.  Some of us have machines we are willing to sell but do not want
to ship.  

I also want to put in a word here for the quilter's 1/4" foot that Chris
sells (Stepping Stone Quilts).  I have 2 of them and need more.  Wish I
could put one in the accessory box of every machine I own.   Chris
sent me one that never got here and he graciously sent another one.  I
don't know if he ever got back the one he sent.  If I ever get to Georgia,
I'm going to look him up.

Garage sale season is starting and I might get out more this year.

Happy hunting,

Marilyn in Ohio

Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 01:28:48 +0100
From: graham forsdyke 
Subject: Re: FW Fanatics 4/19/1999

To Audrey re Elna

Have an Elna manual here for the Sp that could be copied but be warned,
it's 60 pages..... Mail me

To Rosemary re 99 manual

Same as above (but not so many pages)

To Pat re 320K machine

No way anyone is going to mistake this for a Fetaherweight. Singer's
records up the creek again

The 320 was a Singer group four machine ( ziz-zag with pattern discs).
Introduced in 1956 with a six year production run. It was essentially a
free arm version of the 306

Graham Forsdyke

From: "Dixie Nichols" 
Subject: Re: FW Fanatics 4/15/1999
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 19:53:08 -0500

Recently several people have asked about the Quilter's Mate machine which
is made to look like a FW.  My friend & I tried it out while at the
Heritage Quilt Show in Lancaster, PA.  Both of us were not impressed.
Sounded rough and noisey, similar to a diesel engine.  The Vendor was set
up for the show only at a vacant store front in a shopping plaza across
from Rockvale Outlet Mall. I would wonder about service on the machine
after the vendor is gone or after I was home.  Since they are selling at a
price of about $350, I'd rather put my money on a machine with a proven
tract record.

As for the bobbin case, they look like the same case as what is in a true
FW or 301, but I had nothing to try it in or compare it with.

For the person who found a 301 in a thrift shop for $15, you are one lucky
person.  I love these machines.
I have been using my 301s almost exclusively for the past 6 weeks and my
Bernina 1630 is folded down into a cabinet.  Quilting has been much easier
on the 301.  Still have not found a foot for the free motion quilting

BTW, my opinion of the Heritage Quilt show was it was great and I enjoyed
it so much more than the Paducah Show.  Yes it was crowded, but nothing
like Paducah.  The hotel did have accomadations for people eating lunch. 
They even set up tables on the tennis courts and had convenient food cart
sales and golf cart rides to your far away parked car.  Plan to go back. 
In Paducah, you can purchase a lunch from a vendor and then find a sidewalk
or street curb to dine on as the tour buses belch out their fumes as they
It may be only a 3 hour drive away, but it will be a while before I go

Staying home in Missouri this year.

From: "Bill Mitchell" 
Subject: Besides Sewingmachines
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 00:40:13 -0700

To Fellow Feathers,

We do other things besides collect sewing machines:

MaryJane and I are so excited. We are among the first investors to believe
in and support this item that was on the MSNBC news for San Diego yesterday.
We believe in our young engineer, Adrian Corbet, who invented the first
Safe-T-Bar, a seat restraint approved by the Federal Government , to hold
children in their seats in case of a crash on a school bus. In fact, we are
the only seat restraint in the U.S. that has been approved by the Federal
Safety Standards. It seems so simple, but Adrian's invention is the only one
that the Federal Transportation Safety Board would approve. The company also
builds portable class rooms that have been selling like crazy. Our stock
should be going up now. I talked about fifteen of our friends into investing
with us on this a couple years ago. We have been crossing our fingers, and
now it is happening, with the first school district in the U.S. to have the
restraints installed. I just had to share this with my featherweight
friends, because we play with other things besides antiques and
sewingmachines. Especially items that help kids stay safe. See it here:

and here: http://www.themcl.com/index.html

Next ,we'll think of a safe sewing machine for schools, in case they go too
fast and crash or
tip over (?)

Bill Mitchell, in San Diego, where WD40 was invented. Sewing machines love
that stuff, too.

From: (Lois Frankel)
Subject: My fifteen Kbytes of fame
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 23:54:16 -0400

Judy Smith, who runs the Quiltart list, has done a writeup of my
collection for her Collectables Communities website.
The url is: http://communities.msn.com/collectibles
Lois Frankel                 http://pluto.njcc.com/~lfrankel
      (pix of cats, quilts, and antique sewing machines)

Any ideas you might think you find in this message are mine; any resemblance
to ideas of anyone else--real, imaginary, living, dead, employer, coworker,
friend, enemy, neighbor, spouse, pet, family member, insect, microorganism,
government, organization, extraterrestrial, or potted plant--is your fault!

From: (Midori Raymore)
Subject: Re: FW Fanatics 4/19/1999
Content-Type: multipart/mixed; boundary="IMA.Boundary.732837429"

     From: midori_raymore
     Date: Wednesday, 4/21/99
     Subject:  Looking for info, prices, and places for FW's.
     I've just been looking at this listing and absorbing all the 
     information.  There seems to be a lot out there to absorb.  I'm 
     currently located at Denali Park, Alaska and recently had the 
     opportunity to use a FW at a Judy Dale class in Fairbanks.  I fell in 
     love.  Now I'm looking for a machine but am some what intimidated with 
     the idea of shipping one all the way up here.  I had my mom start 
     looking around in Washington and the prices there are above a 
     $1000.00.  That's well above my budget.  If I start visualizing, what 
     parameters should I use besides "FW, FW, FW, please, a FW." And I live 
     130 miles from town so I never really go to garage or estate sales.  
     Any other suggestions for a "wanta be fanatic but no machine yet" 
     person?  Thanks, Midori 

From: "Nancy" 
Subject: 201 slide plate
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 16:02:57 -0400

I am in need of a 201 slide plate can anyone help me?
Nancy from Michigan
Traveling Featherweight 
Care Instructors
Bill and Nancy Berhrman
New Web Page

From: Bekibee
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 22:56:00 EDT
Subject: 66??99??

What is the difference between a Singer Model #66 and a Singer Model #99?
I have a machine that belonged to my grandmother that is in a round top 
wooden case and uses a knee lever.  It is a small machine but very heavy.  
The serial number is AC897741.  I was told by a Singer dealer that this 
machine was made in 1928 but I don't know what the model number is.  Can 
anyone give me information on this?

Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 11:40:02 -0400 (EDT)
From: Sylvia Lanza 
Subject: Jim Sorrell's Reminisces

We love those type of stories.  This is the unwritten
history of the sewing machine, and should be told. 
When I was first married in 1963 I answered a similar
ad, and was visited by a salesman in my home.  I didn't
take the bait, though, and he went home disappointed.

I believe, in the 1970's that practice was mostly ended,
because consumer protection laws were enacted, where the
buyer could rescind the transaction within two days, if
the transaction did not take place in the seller's usual
place of business.


Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 20:03:49 -0700
From: mel neal 
Subject: Featherweights.

I have a featherweight case. It has blue lineing in it as well as the
lide. same pattern as the black. The lockes are brass not crom. uses a
differnt key. It has the tray. Questen has any one go any info on this
case. A 1940 machine was in it when I bought it.
Thanks Mel.
cheakout  www.couleedam.com.....

From: "Vicki M. Dyson" 
Subject: New 99-13
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 17:55:06 -0400

I wonder if anyone can give me an idea of what my new machine is worth. =
It's a beautiful Singer 99-13 Hand Crank portable with original wooden =
case, condition about 7, serial number G9231702. According to Singer and =
the shop owner, she was made in 1921. Her decals are mostly intact with =
the occasional scratches. She sews beautifully and was just overhauled. =
I stumbled onto her today when I took my black featherweight in for =
servicing. The shop owner's sister had it and was going to take it to =
her flea market shop with a price of $300, but she confided to me that =
she'd take $200. I snapped it up!! I was so excited. Hope somebody can =
help me. Thanks.


From: cnssewmachines (c b)
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 08:37:41 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: S F Centennial

Hi Everyone
Couldn't help but jump in on the question Lee had re-S F Centennial.  Do
you suppose there has been a mix up over a Centennial and the actual
Exposition model?  We have never heard of  a Centennial either but do
have the Exposition model.  
The only difference from a regular FW and the Exposition is the emblem
that we can see.  
A few months ago we were able to obtain this machine by word of mouth.
The guy that owned it got it from his mother who purchased it at the S F
Worlds fair in 1939.  She in turn gave it to her son because it was his
birth year.  DS had no use for it and we were able to get it.
Anyway the emblem on the front looks just like a Centennial only it
reads Golden Gate Exposition.  San Francisco1939.  If you didn't look
close you would think it was a centennial.
Anyother questions feel free to e-mail us.

Steve & Carolyn  Braddi

Durham Calif

From: BATB4Me
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 14:52:09 EDT
Subject: Re: FW Fanatics 4/19/1999

*Think* I have found [by accident] a *featherweight*........How do identify 
the year & model????? Any help would be appreciated.....Laura[in Fla]

From: "Vicki M. Dyson" 
Subject: WHite Featherweight vs 328K
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 1999 07:49:23 -0400

I had the same experience with Singer just last week. I have a beautiful =
white featherweight and called to get its birthdate. They were able to =
give me a date, but also told me that my machine was a 328k. NOT! It =
says 221 right on it. Obviously their records are wrong.

Vicki M. Dyson


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