Saturday, 18 August 2018

Sometimes...

... there are unusable leftover bits of sewing machines.. While I detest upcycled sinks and stupid lamps, I do hate to waste good metal

This is Raveningham School- Fish Rising, our little unofficial part of the Waveney Valley Sculpture Trail.
More details HERE

Monday, 16 July 2018

Cor, Blimey...

This happened
I bought 12 machines on eBay, all described as "worse than the pictures" and "with free woodworms"
Drove to get them, 20 miles. Man who sold them turned out to have lived in my current house 22 years ago..

So, I spent a day-and-a-half taking all the good bits off, labelling, little baggies, lots of oil and PlusGas and dirt (particularly dirt) and now I have three buckets of good spares and a corpseyard...

...which makes the scrap man happy

Then I got an email from my friend-and-collaborator in the Other Local Sewing Machine Shop
"I have been clearing out the garage and have about 50 wrecked machines, when can you collect?"
This is the First Installment (26 machines) - we brought another lot back today and have at least 2 more car-loads tomorrow

Two deep and two back, plus these Big Boys

(Probably the best ones, but Oh! the cases...)
This is what happens to a Viking case left on a wet floor

And this, surprisingly, is the pedal we removed from that case - not even dirty..



Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Still stocktaking, and comparing treadles...

Now, counting plates is all very well, but life has to continue unabated, and in spite of the snow. And, I was asked to compare the regular domestic treadle and the industrial types, and thought this might be a useful idea.
I have used a Singer 15 class domestic treadle for over 40 years - it's precise, fast, slow, and strong, and it sews chiffon at least as well as canvas. I actually think a machine that sews chiffon is superior, of course. Straight stitches in the Forward Direction only. Here it is (excuse the mess)

The irons are 21 inches wide, and the top is 29 inches from the floor. It's not very clear in this photo, but mine has a "big" drive wheel, which makes it faster. I have long ago lost the table-top, and it is set under and on top of a standard kitchen worktop about 8 feet long. This is useful. I have also set it a little further back than is standard, as the extra space in front of the needle is very useful.
And here's an Industrial one - this has a Singer 31k15 in it





Now, you will note that this machine is much bigger - it's not a "heavy-duty" machine, being designed for the tailoring trades, so fast and precise. 
It needs a longer treadle base, or your knees hit the left side of the irons, and this is done by adding a spacer top and bottom to a regular set of irons (this one also has a "large" wheel)
Apart from the spacers, and sometimes a set of pieces to raise the top, this is much the same as a domestic treadle. The width of the irons is 26 inches, and the height is still 29 inches. I have had electric (clutch motor) machines - they almost always seem to be taller, and I have been known to cut them down. I have a modern machine (a Juki ) but it still has (and needs) only those ever-so lovely straight stitches. Mind you, it does go backwards. And it's robust in many ways, but not like these two old ladies...

The 31k is for sale, by the way, see here for many other types and shapes of treadles from 1880 onwards

Now, back to the Plates Pages. Ho, hum...