Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Treadle

Three years back when my uncle passed away, that side of the family had to clean out his family (my grandmother's childhood) home.  In doing so they found my great grandmother's treadle.  Originally my aunt was going to take it but decided she didn't have room, so she offered it to me.  Of course, I said yes.  Who wouldn't say yes to an antique foot-powered sewing machine owned by their great grandmother?  Sadly I let my Aunt put it in her storage space rather than taking it right then.  Had I been more wise about rust, I could have saved myself a world of trouble by not letting it sit there for 3 years.  But hindsight is 50/50.

At any rate, it's a 1920's Singer Red Eye Treadle model #66.  =)  Produced in a lot of 50, 000.  Or so says the source I found this at during my intense internet search that I can't find again.  

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Knowing the model (or what I thought was the model before I realized there were numerous versions of the 66), I went about beginning to clean the machine head this weekend.  I unscrewed the machine head from the frame.  Took off all the face plates and proceeded to vacuum up the lint balls with the shop vac.  Anything that remained I pulled out with forceps.  Then I went on to soak the internal mechanics in liquid wrench (a penetrating oil).  At first I applied it with the little hose adapter but then just started spraying away.  I sprayed in each of the oiling holes and in all the panels until it was dripping into the disposable oil pan I picked up specifically for this.  After everything got a good soak, I began scrubbing with an old toothbrush to loosen the old black grime (which I've been told is the remnants of old oil).  As the toothbrush wasn't removing the oil, I then wiped those spots with clean cotton balls to pull the oil off.  Had I been thinking, I would have used the old lab forceps I have to cotton ball further in.  Or even grabbed a q-tip for those hard to reach places.  But I was running low on light and didn't have the time to meander.  Once again... hindsight for a future date of re-cleaning.  After that I oiled everything up very liberally with sewing machine oil in all the holes and at all the joints such that it was dripping out of the machine.  And I ran it for around a minute to get the oil into the joints.  I also wiped the paint down will a bit of liquid sewing machine oil as well in the case that I got some liquid wrench on it.

As I haven't the time tonight to upload all the pictures for direct comparison (which I will do this week), I put them up on my flickr.  -->

Once they are up on this blog, you will find them below this.

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