Featherweight Fanatics List Archives

Featherweight Fanatics
Digest of postings from Saturday, October 2, 1999

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From: "virginia hadley" 
Subject: singer sewhandy
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 01:01:54 -0700

To Whom it May Concern:
I am writing on behalf of a friend of mine who has a very old singer sewing machine.This is all the information she could give me about the sewing machine. It is in a small case the machine itself is 9 inches long. It has a hand turning wheel and all it says on it is SewHandy* A trademark of  THE SINGER MFG. CO..  That is on a small plate of the front of the machine. If you could help us out with any information on it, we would greatly appreciate it. One lady told her, she thought it was made in 1860.
Thank You
Virginia Hadley
Date: Sun, 03 Oct 1999 06:07:09 -0400
From: Mark & Linda Heminway 
Subject: Restoring old machines

Sharon asked:
> From: "Sharon Kucey" 
> Subject: Help with dirty machine
> Date: Fri, 1 Oct 1999 08:54:12 -0700
> We have a 1935 FW that has 60 years of grime on it and need some hits about
> cleaning it. It has obviously been smoked on for many, many years. We've
> never had one this difficult to clean and don't want to use anything that
> might damage the machine.
> Thanks for any help.

Sharon, the Heminway family web page has some extensive instructions on
machine cleaning and restoration.  Perhaps some of the helpful hints we
have compiled over the last few years will help you out?
Good luck, just remember to be gentle and start with the mildest of
products first.
Here is the URL for the site:
> http://members.ttlc.net/~mljjhem/images/seriousl.htm

Linda Heminway
Kingston  NH
Date: Sun, 03 Oct 1999 06:36:41 -0400
From: Mark & Linda Heminway 
Subject: Paris type sewing table

To LaVon:
Saw your post!
>  We found what I think Linda Heminway refers to as a
> Paris? table in a Cheyenne flea market.  It has the measurement on the 
> edge, about 19 1/2 in. wide, 36 3/4 in. long, and 26 1/2 in. high.  It has
> wooden wheels, the patent date is 8/14/1888, has Belding-Hall Mfg. Co.
> Prize Medal, Belding, Mich., USA.  Have not been able to research it, but
> it would be nice if it related to Belding Thread Co.(one can hope).  It
> folds up very flat, so takes up little space while we travel.

I have not seen or heard of this type of table with any markings on them
other than the ones that say Paris Mfg. Co, in So. Paris ME.  The tables
that many people have that are not marked Paris on the underside,
usually have no company name, so this was a very good find!  In fact, to
have it say something about Belding may be of special interest.  As some
of you may know, my husband's ancestors owned Heminway threads company
that was located in CT years ago.  They eventually merged with Belding
and become Belding Heminway and sold fine silk embroidery threads and
other related booklets and embroidery kits in the 1800s.  Later the name
Belding Corticelli was used as well.  I always keep my eyes open for
information, and do have small collection of Heminway Threads, Belding
and Corticelli items. Though, where this says Belding Hall on it, it's
probably not related.  There is much that can be learned about these
tables and the companies that manufactured them!
Many of you have been kind enough to e-mail me with clues to this
mystery, but unfortunately there are no real facts that I can offer
people.  This find of yours, LaVon, may give us a clue as to the company
who manufactured the "knock off" look alike tables!  Perhaps there were
several manufacturers making similar tables?  I do note, though, that
your table had the word copywrite on the bottom, LaVaon, which is
something of interest!
Congratulations on your find, these tables are great and so very useful. 
As this is somewhat off topic, I do apologize.  
Linda Heminway
Kingston NH
From: "Woodstock Sewing Centre" 
Subject: my two cents worth.
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 08:20:46 -0400

Dear fws; this is mikeh, never have i been so busy, but as all concerned say to me dont whine about being busy its better than being slow. The bottom line is all those really old service men are sick or dead or retired. That leaves me in a city of 30,000 as the only service man left and then we draw from 50 miles or more as well. IT feels good being appreciated but as i say its only taken nearly twenty years. This is a slow to gain business, i could tell you that i am almost caught up with the  mail order business but it wouldnt matter because i am going to lose so much time next week, with two days off, taking wed off to run errands and go to the local pioneer village for elizabeth for a field 
trip, and closing the store on sat for my wedding, its my wifes and i wedding anniversery and we are renewing our vows and having a wedding ceromony and a reception and the whole thing on a budget of course. So i know that i wont get much done next week anyhow.  This has been a slow year for my spotters, the yard sale pickings have been pathetic , and the auctions , who has time to go.  So its up to me to get the stuff we have restored and sellable and concentrate on that. mikeh

Date: Sun, 03 Oct 1999 08:11:39 -0500
From: Pamela Jablonsky 
Subject: Pfaff 30 problems

Let me blow off a little steam here.  I had problems with my Pfaff 30's
motor, so I took it to the local Pfaff dealer.  Stood surrounded by
computerized machines and software -- not a used machine in sight. The
young pretty clerk laid major attitude on me when she saw the machine: 
expression, body language.  What's the problem, she asked, writing up
the work order.  Wisps of smoke coming out of the motor, I replied.  She
dropped her pen and gave a snorting, derisive laugh:  SMOKE?  Smoke out
of the MOTOR?? 

I've decided that when I pick up the machine and pay the bill, I'll
write the check, scrutinize it closely with a frown on my face, and ask
her hesitantly:  "Are you going to. . . deposit this right away?"

Cindy P. from Minnesota, a sweetheart of a gal and a fellow antique
Pfaff lover, calls herself a "Pfaff snob."  Well, I've seen the real
article now, and it ain't pretty.

-- Pam in WI
From:  (John Downing)
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 06:13:46 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Hello Fanatics! 

I just bought an old Singer yesterday at the Salvation Army for $12.50!
I was so excited to find it! It is working & in a cabinet, but is pretty
dirty, & I'm sure the belt needs to be replaced. Any tips on cleaning &
finding a replcement belt would be much appreciated!  I can' find a year
date on it, but there is a plate attached to the base plate with
AF091879 stamped on it.     Thank you!   jpincoquille@webtv.net 
From: "Dorothy Stowe" 
Date: Sun, 03 Oct 1999 08:05:17 PDT

To Gail Pickens
How or where would you find information about government warehouses full of 
crinkle matte finish featherweights?  I'd be interested in finding out if I 
had a starting place.
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 14:26:49 EDT
Subject:  Elna  Supermatic Butterfly Cam

Hi Feathers,
Thank you so much for your suggestions re my newest Singer.
Question: Does anyone know if there is a Butterfly Cam for the Elna 
Supermatic?  If so, would you know the Cam number and/or would you have one 
for sale?
Date: Sun, 03 Oct 1999 13:52:53 -0700
From: Joyce Hooton 
Subject: Odor in Featherweight case

I have noticed lately the subject of the smelly cases coming up, again.
I bought  a Featherweight and case a while back that almost knocked me
down when I opened the shipping box. Got rid of most of the odor on the
machine by cleaning really good and changing the oil pad underneath.
(Plus a lot of airing out!)

The case was another story.  I finally sealed it up in a garbage bag
liner with kitty litter. Also put kitty litter inside the case.  Put it
in a corner and left it for two  or three weeks.  I beleive most of the
odor is gone now and I can live with it.I am allergic to the mildew, so
if it doesn't burn my sinuses, I figure it worked pretty good!!
Joyce from Sonora CA.
From: RTowers
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 21:28:44 EDT
Subject: Re: FW Fanatics for 10/1/1999

To Louise re: noisey bobbin case area:
     Yes, Graham is going to prepare a list of all the possible causes of a 
noisey bobbin case.  However, since there are numerous causes, this will take 
him longer than initially anticipated.  He will be on vacation in the US real 
soon.  However, upon his return, he promised to inform us all of the causes 
once his research is compiled.  Project turned out to be more complex than he 
realized.  So, have patience for a while.  Graham will let us all know when 
this info is available.
Diane in Montana who also has some noisey bobbin cases - one due to a loose 

ADMIN NOTE: This came from a lady who found the FWF web page.  I'm pass her questions on to those who really have alot of experience  - Thanks - Sue T

From: "Denny & Karen Leak" 
Subject: featherweight?
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 15:22:00 -0500

Hi Sue,
 I found your web site, and have a question for you since you seem to
have lots of experience with these machines.
My grandmother who passed away 30yrs ago, left her Singer to my aunt who
died 2 yrs ago, and I got the machine.  I am a quilter, and have 2
Vikings.  So I never even plugged in the Singer to see if it worked.
But I have been having trouble w/
my V. So I got out the singer.  I am puzzled if what I have *is* a
It came in a wooden rounded top box that hinges itself to the machine on
the right, and locks with the key on the left.  It has the green manual
with red lettering on the front, and about 6 attachments, pleater, yada
yada yada.  This thing got SO much use, that my husband had to rewire it
cause they were bare, and the paint is just about gone from the Singer
lettering but it does have it.  It does not have an extension on the
table to the left.  It stops were the box locks on.  This was the first
confusion.  Also the thing is heavy as lead.  The motor must have been
replaced, because the paint on it is very shiny and new looking.
Another confusing point from the website, was the model #  which  I
found on the base of the machine infront, like right under the bobbin
threader starts with AA, not the other combinations.  SO, do you think
this is something else or  IS this a FW?
Also,  It smells funny.  My husband oiled it, the stitches look perfect
but it has occasionally skipped a stitch.  I tried putting the bobbin in
differently, and did a line of sewing and didn't have any skipped
Can you advise me if this absolutely should be looked over or perhaps
the smell is just the dust burning off from being so old?
Thanks very much
Karen in Kansas
From: "Bill & Elizabeth Harris" 
Subject: Happy Dance!
Date: Sun, 3 Oct 1999 21:40:51 -0500

Dear Feathers,   Am doing the happy dance because my Mom found a beautiful
15-91 at a yard sale for $25.  The machine is probably a condition 9. 
Hardly a scratch on it.  It came with a buttonhole attatchment with
instruction book.  Also a sewing bird made by Singer, several bobbins,
ruffler and attatchments.  The cabinet has been refinished but is still in
great condition.  The machine is a centennial, too.  The lady said there
was something wrong with it.  We found a piece of thread hung behind the
bobbin casing.  Works just fine.  Now I have several machines set up with
different projects going at the same time.  Liz in Southeast MO

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