8 February 2014

I've gone Antique Singer sewing machine crazy!

What am I obsessed about at the moment? Antique Singer sewing machines, that's what.

At the end of last year I acquired two (more) antique Singer treadles. (Thank you eBay!) Added to my existing machines, that brought my total to four Antique Singers. A bit excessive you say? I hear you, I don't know what it is about them, but I start to swoon when I see a beautiful Singer. Add in a gorgeous cabinet, in mint condition if possible, and I might even start drooling.

Up until these latest two machines entered my house, I hadn't even been able to try out the other two. You can bet I'll be writing (a lot) more about these machines as I get to know them, but first I'll give you a brief history of the machines that I have, in the order in which they entered my life.

Firstly is a 2008 eBay purchase. It is a 1900 Model 27 treadle, in an absolutely gorgeous 7 drawer cabinet. The machine was in need of a bit of attention, so has never been tried. My husband took the machine out of the cabinet shortly after we got it home. It came with an almost complete accessories box and original instruction booklet, which was put somewhere safe. It'll surface again one day I'm sure. We did download a manual that was, if not identical, then similar enough to the original, so we wouldn't risk damaging the original when looking anything up. Unfortunately we were in such a hurry to clean this machine up that we didn't take photos of the machine before we did anything to it (and it's currently in lots of pieces), so the photos I have used here are scanned from our printout of the eBay listing.

The accessories box
My second machine was a gift from my father in 2009. It is an electric machine, model 99K, from 1950. It has a centenary badge on it (1851- 1951), so one can only assume that the manufacture of this machine was either completed in 1951, or it wasn't allocated for sale until 1951, so was badged accordingly. No accessories, not even a bobbin, just the presser foot that was attached. As the bobbins changed since the 1900 machine, I was unable to try this one out either.

In December 2013 we (and by we I mean I sent my husband out with the car) picked up two treadles in one day, both from eBay purchases. The first of these is a 201K model from 1953 in an art deco style cabinet. It came with the original instruction booklet, spare bobbins and an assortment of feet. Including a ruffler!

The second of these purchases is in a gorgeous cabinet, model 66K, 1937. It came with some spare bobbins, the original belt and a new spare belt. And yes, these two and my 99K 1950 electric machine all take the same bobbins, and all 4 machines take the same feet. Oh Happy Day!! With bobbins in hand it meant that I was finally able to try out my electric machine! And of course, these two treadles.

I was going to give you a great big long list of references that I have been collating as I find them, but I thought I would just start with the basics. If you have a Singer and don't know much about it, these references will get you started.


To find more information on your machine, first stop is the Singer website where you can look up your serial number and find out the year of manufacture. This information comes from their record logs. Most instruction manuals are also a free download from here.

International Sewing Machine Collectors Society has more detailed manufacture information, with a database which includes the date, model numbers and number of each that was manufactured at that time. There is a wealth of information on this site, which I am still only just starting to explore.

Here's another website (Sandman Collectibles) that helps with identifying the type of machine without needing to know the serial number. Complete with pictures! From here you can also buy printed manuals to be sent to you.

1 comment:

  1. I have one of the fold out boxes of feet - aren't they amazing?