Wednesday, April 19, 2006
The Newest Member of My (Sewing Machine) Family
Singer Model 185
I am a sucker for vintage sewing machines (much to my wife's dismay). Especially the ones that make their way to the local thrift shop. So when I made my weekly stop yesterday, there it was: a Singer 185J.
He stood proud in his battered cabinet. Dirty from what may have been years of solitude and neglect. But I saw a diamond in the rough. And...when I saw the price was just $10.00, I became even more interested.
If you're a 'dumpster-diver' like me, you know that you get all excited when you see these relics. And many times you just "have to have it" only to find out that, mechanically, it's a money pit! I've been down that path a few times, so now I do all I can to test the machine out before I haul it home.
I (carefully) carried the machine and cabinet to an electric outlet and said a little prayer that it would work. Lo and behold, the light turned on. And a tap on the foot pedal and we were off and running. I took along a spool of thread and a small swatch of fabric this time for a final test. Another pleasant surprise: very nice, even little stiches. Bingo! We've got a winner.
I'm anxious to get it cleaned up and oiled to see what it can really do. I'll take before-and-after pictures and post them soon. The cabinet top is a mess, but I think a good sanding and a refinish job will have it looking like new again.
Bonus: opening the cabinet door revealed a box of shiny attachments: button foot; zipper foot, binder foot; ruffler foot; and a few other goodies including a very old Singer screw driver for the bobbin case!
(My wife is gonna shoot me when I tell her I bought another sewing machine!)