The Singer 221 Featherweight is not a complicated little sewing machine. If you are wanting to know how to oil it there are manuals that cover that. If you are wanting to know how to make a blind stitch there are manuals that cover that.
When your machine is skipping a stitch, thread getting caught in the rotary, the machine won’t pick up the bottom thread or another problem, you probably like an answer because you would like to get back to sewing again, right.
Well I would like to give you some of those answers. I would be more than happy to give you some of the answers to your problems. I have been a professional sewing machine repairman for years. Most of your questions are not difficult if you have the expertise to answer the questions that come up when you run into trouble sewing.
Quilting, Sewing and the Singer 221 Featherweights are all part of the same history. I enjoyed the book “The Perfect Portable” and I see the author has spent time to put together facts. I know some of the information is not exactly accurate but it is a nice history of the Singer Featherweight sewing machine. She covers years of nice details.
If you question some of her ideas in the book and want to read some interesting differences in her ideas compared to mine on the Singer 221 Featherweights read on.
Quilters have been using these machines for a very long time and they may not care about the differences. Mostly the repair men who keep the machine running for the quilters are concerned about the difference when buying parts.
Nancy talked about a number of different models in her book, but there are people that have never seen some of these models. They are not everywhere and some people have searched for a long period of time to come up empty handed in their search for any kind of a featherweight.
There is a project call the Pink Singer 221 Featherweights and it show other Singer 221 featherweight lovers that it don’t hurt if the machine is not black. If they are in very poor condition an in need of a paint job it is better that the little machine is painted and fixed up to keep them around as a piece of sewing history.
If they wear down to metal and are not painted they begin to corrode. Then they become useless to anyone. The worst thing that a person can do with the little 221 is to leave it sit with no oiling or cleaning.
It seems if you leave them in a garage or closet with no use for long periods of time they will draw moister and the carrying case will start to get a mildew smell to it.
The second worst thing a singer 221 featherweight machine lover can do is not use the machine. I started working on Singer machines when I was very small. My father was a Singer sewing machine salesman. He would bring home old treadle machines and let me tear them down. At first I would just take them apart, but after a while I started putting them back together. When I was in high school I started servicing machines for a company as a part time job. In the past couple of years I have personally and professionally taken care of over 500 Singer 221 Featherweights. My article is here to help the new sewing novice with problems so they do not get disgusted with a machine before the fun starts.
I have a last quick minute note and that is when you start your machine always start your hand wheel with the needle started in the downward position. That one thing will save you a lot of frustration. If you are not starting it in a downward motion the thread will hang-up in the rotary and cause the breaking of thread. You will think the worst and feel you need a service man.