Making Old Sewing Machines Live Again

I love working on old sewing machines.  I love the mechanics of them and how they will almost always come back to life after a bit of tweeking and lubrication.  They fascinate me.  

A couple of years ago, an acquaintance gave me several of her old machines because she was moving and didn't want to try to take them with her.  Well, that got me hooked on my latest passion of vintage sewing machines.  Most of them didn't work when I got them.  Two in particular were in very bad shape.  She had found them on an outside junk pile.  Who knows how long the poor things had been sitting there in the elements.

A few weeks ago, I finally got to those two old White machines.  I cleaned, oiled, greased, polished, and loved on them.  Guess what - they both are in working condition again!  I donated them to a local quilt shop so they could have a good, forever home.

The oldest of the two was a 1908 White Family Rotary treadle machine.  She was completely frozen up when I started on her.  I couldn't get her to budge.  Well, after doing my stuff to her, she absolutely sings now.  What a thrill it was for me to get her running again.

These are the "before" and "after" pictures of the 1908.   

The other machine is a 1929 White Rotary.  This one has an electric motor, but is set up as a treadle.  I didn't run the motor because of the condition of the wiring, but if it were up to me, I would remove the motor and use the machine as a treadle.  This one wasn't completely frozen, but she didn't turn over very well.  Again, after I was done, she runs so smoothly.

Here are the "before" and "after" pictures of the 1929.