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Posts Tagged ‘vintage sewing machines’

School started for us today.   I knew I was going to be lonely with my little daughter gone all day, so I thought I would do housework to take my mind off the empty house.  Well, by 10:30 a.m., I had already cleaned the refrigerator, taken out the trash, run the dishwasher, fed the dogs, and washed two loads of laundry.    I can only be good for so long…and then I have to find a sewing machine!

I have a real weakness for old sewing machines.  This is a Brother Window-Matic that we bought recently, but I haven’t had a chance to check it out thoroughly until today.  Cosmetically, it looked pretty, and the electric cord and foot pedal are in good condition.  This morning, I sewed a couple of rows of test stitching, and the machine was very loud and clattery.  I also noticed there was lint and fuzz caught up in the stitched threads.  I’ve never seen that before.  Hmmm…

Brother4

Vintage sewing machine experts always say that old machines should be serviced, or at least cleaned and oiled before doing any real sewing on them, so I read through the instruction manual, and then I started taking the machine apart.

Brother6

It was much easier than I thought it would be.  The instructions are very clear, and I removed the faceplate, the needle clamp and presser foot, the slide plate and the throat plate without any trouble at all.

Brother1

Underneath the throat plate, I found the source of the fuzzy stitching.  There was so much lint packed into that small space that it had almost turned into felt!

Brother2

My little sewing machine brush wasn’t strong enough to clean that, so I ended up using some wooden cocktail sticks (toothpicks) to coax out all the fluffballs.

Brother3

After I had cleaned and oiled all the places recommended in the instruction manual, I gave the machine a really good test drive.  It’s wonderfully quiet and smooth-running now, and after a few minor adjustments, the tension is perfect.

The seller told us that she thought this machine was about 50 years old.  I think it must have been quite a fancy machine when new.  Here are some of the advertised  feaures:

  • Window-Matic stitch length regulator has a large window dial stitch-length indicator.
  • Built-in sewing light with a non-glare light.
  • Instant reverse sewing with the flick of a lever.
  • Drop-feed for embroidery and darning.
  • Numbered thread tension dial, self-adjusting automatic bobbin winder, hinged presser-foot to ride over pins and seams, automatic tension release, notched shuttle hook that prevents thread from tangling, and a snap-out race for convenience in cleaning.

I found some information about this type of machine on the Internet, and it says these machines were manufactured in Japan.  However, my machine clearly states on the front, “Made in the Republic of Ireland.”  Maybe it’s a special machine?  It’s certainly special to me!  🙂

Brother5

Happy Sewing!

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