Old Sewing machines

So how do old sewing machines fit into the rusty collection? I would say there are several reasons. The first reason is that I knew I needed to do some repairs on the old cars I would need a sewing machine for. When I started to look for a sewing machine I realised I would need an old sewing machine for the work I intended to do.  Researching old sewing machines revealed a whole universe of machines, manufacturers and history. And best of all: they were mechanical marvels and very affordable too.  Here's a selection.

The Chinese Cobbler machine
This is the odd one we got earlier: You wouldn't believe that this contraption is a new "Cobbler" sewing machine we bought only a few years ago. It is a Chinese version of a "Patent Elastique" or "Cleas patcher"  leather sewing machine. Though it looks very crude it sews right through thick leather. I used it to sew the canvas roof for the Wolseley Ten. 

The Ward Arm & Platform Sewing machine
Weird and ingenious Ward Arm & Platform  sewing machine was patented in 1873 and produced from 1875 to 1895.

The Elna 
When you start reading about the history of sewing machines you can't miss the brilliant Elna Grasshopper electric free arm machine. It is so much smaller and lighter than the old cast iron machines. I understand it must be the first electric lightweight free arm household machine. This one was built in 1946 according to the serial number.

The Singer sewing machines
Of course every collection needs a Singer. This is the Singer 12K New Family. Built in 1887
 Even comes with some spare needles!
 Singer 12K New Family. Built in 1877
Ca 1894 Singer 28k Vibrating shuttle machine
1925 Singer 127K Vibrating shuttle machine. Spot the differences to the 28k.
Classic Ca. 1910 Singer 15D Treadle. Made in Germany.
 The big and strong 1927 Singer 66K
Delicious Singer 1955 99k. The little brother to the 66K.

Here you can see the difference in size!
This is the alloy version of the classic 201K. Manufactured in 1956

The German sewing machines

The first of the old sewing machines I bought locally is this Gritzner made by Pfaff. Beginners luck in the best possible way. This machine was hardly used, so it sews like new.
This is a more conventional but superstrong Pfaff 60. A modern shape for 1955. It is not an electric machine, but there is an electric sewing light. Came with all the accessories, booklet and even the original bill of sale dated 1955.
Her older sister Pfaff 30 looking very traditional and all steel. Built in 1952 according to the serial number.
Just one year older than the Pfaff 30 is this 1951 Pfaff 130 treadle machine. Here you can clearly see the cleated drive belt and the big dial for the zigzag mechanism.
This youngster is almost too modern.  Pfaff 9. Lighter than the 60 it is still a sturdy machine. Also a cleated belt machine.

This 1903 Winselmann came with our Pfaff 30. It is a very close copy of the Singer 28. Of course the decals are different and the bobbin winder looks much like the high version on the later 128.
This Anker. Almost staid compared to the next one.
1956 Anker RR. Looks more modern. But is mechanically very similar.
This is a Helvetia treadle machine with some strange decorations.
How about this Mercury- Sphinx decoration?
Teutonically heavy Kayser early Zigzag machine.

The Japanese Sewing machines:

This Einer must be our heaviest machine. Don't let the Germanic name fool you. It's built in Japan by Toyota, Brother or one of the other Japanese factories.

The Dabla De Luxe Sewing machine. Looks much like a mix between Singer 15 and 99.
This Victoria is a later Japanese machine. Still quite heavy and internally all metal, but the badge is just a sticker, there are a few plastic knobs and buttons and the colour is a less fetching two tone grey.
Rambler. These very nice Japanese sewing machines were offered with various glorious names after ww2.  Some even had car brand names or nanes that were very similar to car brand names.
Very much like a car Badge.


Impala, another name used for a car. Metallic two tone paint and "speedometer" take the classic car theme to a new level.
This Packard is another Japanese American style machine
Chrome controls and dials look very automotive.