Thursday, March 10, 2011

Treadle Singer Sewing Machine

Look what I managed to score on craigslist! I am doing a happy dance right now. It was advertised at $40 but I got it for much, much less!!! Can you believe I got it for $25 ????????

When I picked it up it was in much worse condition than this. The actual machine was all seized up and the needle wouldn't even move, some WD40 and a husband got it moving smoothly. We got the dremmel out to polish up the metal parts in certain places, and it started to shine a little bit with a good old clean.

I also applied some Old English Furniture Almond Oil and this has really helped with the cracking veneer. But it still needs a lot of attention and tender loving care.

The bobbin cover is missing so I need to hunt down one of them and as it is a treadle machine I also need to find a belt for it, so if anyone has refurbished one of these cabinets/singer machine I would really appreciate your feedback/tips/tricks.

The cabinet the sewing machine is housed in is another story, the close up shows how the wood is blistering and cracking, it looks much worse in real life.

I first thought about completely removing the veneer from the top and maybe just sanding down the wood underneath and re staining it. But, I asked Katy over at Mom and her Drill for some advice as I had seen that she refurbished a piece of furniture with a similar problem and she offered the following advice:
"put a sheet on the desk and apply a hot iron, it *may* reactivate the glue and make the veneer lay down flat. You would pile something heavy on top til it dries.
If this doesn't work there other methods, involving cutting the bubbles and squirting glue underneath.
I was too lazy for all of that, so I just refinished it how it was and I'm going to try the hot iron trick".

Any suggestions on how to repair, replace the missing pieces of veneer?


  1. My extended family is 'in the business' and could supply the parts you need! Email me, and I'll pass their info to you :)

  2. Hi Sam!! I'm so happy to see you blogging again, I've missed you!!
    I have an old White machine that has been in my family for many many years and my belt broke a few years back. The artwork on your machine is gorgeous!!! :)

  3. Amazing! I can not believe you got this for $25.! Wow!

  4. That machine is beautiful! Looking at these old machines reminds me I need to ask my brother to give me my grandmother's old Singer. He ended up with it after my mom died a few years ago, but I think it is just sitting in his garage!

  5. I too have one of these beauties! I took mine out of the cabinet, and donated the cabinet, as it was in very poor condition. It took me 4 hours of constant cleaning to get the machine cleaned up. I ordered a reproduction hand crank for it and now it is in a portable case with a hand crank. I love it. I don't use it, but I love looking at it! I just love old machines!

  6. I'm curious to know if you ever got your sewing machine in working condition. The U.S. manufactured over one million of these a year for many years and there are lots of parts available and lots of people with know how. If you still need some help with yours, please let me know. (I'm hoping you were able to clean and replace the WD40 with sewing machine oil so that it won't freeze up.) These are such great machines--most with another 100 years or more of good use in them.

  7. Hi! We are busy unpacking and unearthed a box of sewing supplies that go with an antique singer treadle sewing machine. We have about 4 bobbins, a couple of shuttle bobbin hook cases, and other supplies. You wouldn't be interested in purchasing the lot of them, would you? Contact me at

  8. That's good, I too got mine for $25.00, a lady just wanted it out. I love, it runs so sweet.I have wanted one of these so for soooo long.

  9. I have one that was my grandmother's and she used it well into the 1980s. I keep it more as a side table and as a doomsday prepper to have a machine that doesn't require electricity.

  10. Bring your machine to operating temperature by sewing on a scrap piece of fabric. sewing machine oil

  11. Hi, I just came across this post and I believe I have the same exact machine (1927) and cabinet. I inherited mine and the cabinet was painted :( Mine has all of the original parts still with it. All I need is a belt and they are fairly inexpensive, I just have not ordered one yet.


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