Old Time Quality – Singer Model 66 Treadle Machine Gets New Life

August 8, 2012 | By | 2 Replies More
Singer Model 66

Singer Model 66

I recently came into possession of a 1929 Singer Model 66 Treadle Machine. It had belonged to my next door neighbor, Mrs. Dillinger, when I was young and, unknown to me, my aunt had bought it. My cousin kindly asked me if I wanted the machine when it was time to find it a new home.

Now, these machines are neither small nor light, but my considerate and thoughtful friend Carolyn drove me the hour and a half to pick it up, helped load it in her spacious orange Element, stopped for lunch at IKEA (I know, such a sacrifice!) and then delivered us back to my house.

A few days after its arrival, I took advantage of a long weekend with the garage free and took it apart and cleaned and oiled the sewing head. It worked beautifully! After lugging it upstairs in three pieces and reassembling, I started work on the cabinet. There was one especially bad spot on the top where someone had left a wet glass and the veneer was buckled and another couple similar spots where the finish was mostly gone.

After several passes with mild refinishing products it looks like this now.









I decided not to do more or strip it completely because it doesn’t need to look new. I use the machine and like the way it shows its age gracefully.

I’ve made a couple projects on it from start to finish now. It’s a different way to approach sewing – it makes you think about how to achieve what you want and there is definitely more hand sewing and finishing involved since the machine only sews one way: forward in a straight line!

It’s a nice addition to my sewing tools and at 83 years – the oldest!

What do you think about the old ways of doing things? Better or worse? Let me know or leave a comment – I’d love to know!

Old Business: For folks who get this in an email -I apologize for the missing images in that last post. I didn’t realize that the gallery wouldn’t translate to email – my mistake!


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Category: Needlework, Newsletter

Comments (2)

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  1. HElen says:

    I LOVE these old sewing machines. My grandma used to have one exactly the same and I can still see her sitting treadling it 😉

    • MSatterfield says:

      Thanks, Helen, for sharing that lovely memory!

      There were actually TWO machines – the one you see here and another slightly older one that did belong to my grandmother. Unfortunately, it was in much worse condition and more than I could take on (and I’m pretty handy) so I found it a home with a collector who could do more for it.

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