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  1. Most people who buy the large harness stitchers, known as 441 clones, use them to sew holsters, knife sheathes, saddles, harnesses and saddle bags. They normally come preloaded with #277 bonded nylon thread, on top and in the bobbin and are adjusted and sewn off with this thread (at least they are by our member-dealers), with the test piece under the feet. The most common brands and models discussed on Leatherworker.net include the Cowboy CB4500, the Cobra Class 4, and the Techsew 5100 (they and all other advertisers are supporting us and the server expenses with their paid ad banners).

    Nowadays, it seems that every leathercrafter who has worn out their hands with hand sewing their goods wants to buy that one sewing machine that does it all. They want it to sew wallet interiors, chaps, knife sheathes, tow straps, harnesses and extra thick gun holsters. I see them posting questions about which machine should I buy (to do all this), or similar wording. Respondents usually point out the fact that the typical upholstery grade walking foot sewing machines cannot sew thick holsters or use heavier thread than medium weight #138. The buyer will have to look at a more substantial machine, like a Cowboy, Cobra or Techsew, etc.

    Most advice given is to buy more machine than you think you will need. So, the newbie to machine sewing shells out between $2000 to $3000 for a 441 clone (or $6000 for an actual Juki 441) expecting it to sew everything from wallet interiors to hand gun holsters. It sews the holsters just fine, but not the wallets or other thin projects. The knots are too big to hide between the thin leather layers. Pretty soon, they begin posting requests for help getting their (insert brand name and model) 441 super heavy duty stitcher to sew thin stuff. That's when they are told that they need to buy a lesser machine for thin work. Say what? I thought y'all said to buy more machine than I needed!

    Some folks can and some can't afford to buy a second industrial sewing machine and table for thin work. Their other half (or they themselves) may own a domestic sewing machine, but they found it horrible at feeding and sewing leather, even wallets. They can't justify spending another thousand dollars for a lesser walking foot machine right now. What can they do if all they own is a 441 type machine? In these cases it is possible to "dumb down your machine" to get it to sew thin leather with thinner thread than it was built for. Here's how.

    I'll use my Cowboy CB4500 as the reference, since that's what I currently own. Let's see how to dumb it down to sew thin stuff with thin thread.

    First,  buy some #19 (or even #20) needles in System 7x3. These are not leather point but are a good fit with #92 thread. There aren't usually any leather points available in System 794 under size 23/160. This is both a matter of economics and the tendency of these extra long needles to bend too easily below size 23/160.

    Also buy #92 bonded nylon thread in the colors you intend to use (two spools of each color - one for the bobbin and one for the top thread). I usually get bobbins, oil, needles and thread from the dealer who sold me my machine. Order some extra bobbins if all of yours are already loaded with thick thread.

    1. Install a #19 or 20 needle (with the scarf facing to the right). Any other size will be either too tight or too loose for this thread.
    2. Thread the top with #92 bonded thread, but don't loop it around the top post. Feed it through just one hole. The extra tension from wrapping the thread around two holes in the top post could make it impossible to sink the knots effectively!
    3. Wind an empty bobbin with the color of #92 thread to be used on the bottom of the wallets or interiors, or chaps, etc.
    4. The bobbin spring will be way too loose if the last bobbin had #207 or larger thread in it. so, tighten it down to get a decent amount of tension of the bobbin thread, but not so much that the thin leather puckers on the bottom.
    5. Note: you may have to first loosen the long bobbin tension locking screw before the tensioning screw can be turned.
    6. Set the stitch length to about 6 or 7 stitches per inch.
    7. Run a test stitch line on a stack of the same thickness of leather/material as the interior, or whatever you are going to sew.
    8. Back off the top tension adjuster until the knots move down. You may also have to back off the bottom tension thumb nut so the bottom roller turns with the thread wrapped around it.
    9. If the knots still won't drop between the layers, you'll need to loosen the tension on the check spring. This spring is normally set to high tension action to work with the much heavier #277 or #346 thread that the machine was built to handle.
    10. Loosening the check spring action requires one of the open ended metric wrenches (11 or 12 mm?) that came with your CB4500 to loosen the nut on the back of the left end of the head, where the check spring shaft is fastened. This is a tricky tight fit and may require dinking with the position of the wrench to loosen that nut.
    11. With the locking nut backed off a thread or two, use a screwdriver blade on the front side to turn the bottom roller/check spring shaft counterclockwise until the spring loses some of its tension. Find a position where the spring travels all the way up and just makes it all the way down to the bottom travel stopper, then tighten down the locking nut. The check spring should have enough range of motion to hold the top thread taut until the needle has fully penetrated the leather.
    12. Sew some test stitches again. If the knots are still too close to the top surface, either back off the top tensioner all the way, or tighten the bobbin spring a little more, until they are submerged between the layers. Make sure that your top thread is feeding freely to the top tension disks!

    These are the basic steps needed to dumb down a big Cowboy, Cobra, Techsew, Juki 441, or any other brand name 441 clone.

    It is possible, even after you do all these steps, that the huge needle hole in the feed dog and oversize rectangular slot in the standard throat plate may let the thin or soft leather get pushed down inside the plate, or the feed dog itself. This might ruin your work, or cause gathering and tiny stitches. There is a solution though. If your machine came with an accessory flat throat plate with a narrow slot, you can remove the standard plate and feed dog and instead, use just the slotted plate. It is much less likely to allow the leather to be pushed into it. However, since you are taking the bottom feed dog out of the equation, your stitch length will change and reverse stitches may not hit the same holes unless you play with the stitch length lever as you sew backwards. If you didn't get this plate with the machine, you can order one from the dealer who sells that brand and model (to avoid possibly mismatched mounting holes).

    I have done this temporary conversion many times, and it is always a PITA. Whenever possible, I use a different machine that is already setup with #69 or #92 thread and has shorter needles that don't deflect as easily.

    Dumbing down your 441 machine to sew thin projects may earn you enough money to buy a proper upholstery grade walking foot sewing machine (the type that maxes out at 3/8" and #138 thread). Having more than one machine will greatly expand your sewing possibilities.

  2. Hi I love this site and over time I have learned many good things from here, lately I am having some trouble with one of my machines and hope some one can help me. As you can see from the pictures, it will stitch properly for a few stitches then some of the stitching comes out from the button , I have adjusted the timing , different needle thickness adjust the tension and still getting the same results , any one had the same problem and what they did to fix it or any suggestions I very much appreciate it.

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  3. I wanted to re-mount my Consew 226 walking foot sewing machine in a better table, and I had access to a replacement top. The new top didn’t have the required recess to mount the head unit, so I needed to rout one out. I started with a full-sized template of the shape I needed.

     

    Building the Template

    The corner diameter of the template needed to be 1-3/8”, and since I didn’t have a router bit that large, I used a Forstner bit to cut the holes.   The template is made from 1/2" MDF.

    59dfa5d3eebea_Sewingtable1-1.jpg.958f13c5e4d7dbd4079d073c952bdce4.jpg

     

     

    Then I completed the opening of the template with a router and spiral bit.  A clamp-on straightedge guides the router in a straight path.  

    59dfa61419614_Sewingtable2-1.jpg.1e2bdee2c4ae26427e1ccc3b0e8bfa10.jpg

     

     

    Next I made removable corner inserts for the template. I’ll explain the reasoning for these little triangular pieces in a minute. 

    59dfa6b753e00_Sewingtable4-1.jpg.64e969b3fadd4aeff5347e550b1eeddf.jpg

     

     

    They are easily made my marking the curve on some scrap, and sanding to the line. Then I cut them loose at the miter saw. These small pieces were 1-1/4” on the smaller sides, and 1-3/4” on the hypotenuse.

    59dfa6dc27d46_Sewingtable3-1.jpg.4625d185578706e915cdb65cadf9f51e.jpg

     

     

    Milling the Main Opening

    Then I used the template to pencil the shape of the opening on the sewing table top, and roughed it out with a jigsaw. At this point I was ready to clamp the full-sized template to the table top. The corner blocks were carpet taped in place, and I routed the opening flush with the template using a 2” long bearing-guided template bit (rout clockwise when inside a frame).

    59dfa70a83514_Sewingtable6-1.jpg.9ef4230e49f3818a9726e36b416ce502.jpg

     

     

    Here you can see how the corner blocks protect the corners, which will eventually support the weight of the sewing machine head.

    59dfa749dbb3c_sewingtable5-1.jpg.2d6dc101e2f358504e7973cce7d4e620.jpg

     

     

    Routing the Ledge 

    Next I switched to a 3/4” long bearing-guided template bit and removed the corner blocks. Then I was able to follow the template’s radiused corners to mill a small ledge. This cut was 5/8” deep, which allows 3/8” for the lip of the sewing machine, and 1/4” for the rubber bumpers that I’ll install later.  The 226 is a top loader, so I am shooting for a flush fit here.  If you have a side loader like the 206rb, you might want to make the ledge slightly shallower so the bobbin access plate clears the table.  

    59dfa770e84da_Sewingtable8-1.jpg.429a538c43776e0db78e18d544c8bad9.jpg

     

     

    Bumpers and Hinges

    The rubber bumpers are just some rubber mat that you can buy in bulk at the hardware store. They are tacked in place, one at each corner. 

    59dfa7fb828cf_Sewingtable9-1.jpg.032ec24f2937c448aa63ce0817057c9c.jpg

     

     

    Then I drilled holes in a scrap of MDF with a 1-1/2” Forstner bit. I then used that as a template to rout holes for the hinges. I could have simply used the Forstner bit to drill out the hinges, but I find the router cuts to a more consistent depth. Then excavate a little spot for the hinge mechanism. This is easily accomplished with a trim router and 1/4” spiral bit.

    59dfa8239f45d_Sewingtable11-1.jpg.5fca3e66135c61647c1a69185d07c014.jpg

     

     

    Final Fitting

    The fit looks good, and the router bits cut the laminate cleanly.

    59dfa84d0d709_Sewingtable13-1.jpg.d9e9279b4f61e8a93a93254844eecd7e.jpg

     

     

    It took me most of a Saturday to accomplish, but it sure looks nicer than the old table.  If anyone is contemplating a sewing machine table build, I found this full-sized template method with corner blocks worked quite well.  I'll hang on to the template, and if I need to do it again it'll be a snap.

    59dfa869de886_Sewingtable15-1.jpg.28f2dac4dcf1761d969c730cb2b12e1b.jpg

    Sewing table 1-1.jpg

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    bluesman1951
    Latest Entry

    To all who know renown jockey saddle maker Garland Sugarman ,he had a stroke a week ago and in that time there has been no improvement in his condition.He is the hospital in Albuquerque.

  4. By the end of the week I am expecting to receive the following in the post:

    • A cheap (Chinese made, with probable Japanese influence) beginner's sett of leather working tools from Ebay
    • A remnant/pieces pack of leather, needles, and thread from The Identity Store
    • A copy of "The Leatherworking Handbook" by Valerie Michael from Amazon

    Yet to acquire from the local chain DIY store (probably nearer the time, or on Sunday if it slips my mind before then which is likely to happen) are:

    • wood and fixings to make a cheap stitching pony
    • Evo-Stik Time Bond contact adhesive
    • an Oilstone (or similar) for inevitable initial sharpening of previously mentioned tools as well as general upkeep later on
    • miscellaneous things that catch my eye which may be helpful such as clamps, sandpaper, straight edge etc

    Other things yet to be appropriated into my "kit": 

    • worksurface stuff (cutting mat, poly board, granite (or similar))
    • decent desk lamp as most of my work will be completed in the late evening/small hours after finishing the late shift at "the day job" and goodness knows my eyes will need all the help they can get
    • edge slicking substance
    • graph/grid paper for when I feel up to making my own patterns
    • bone folder type tool
    • stitching awl

    Things I already have, yet to be consolidated together:

    • poly mallet
    • basic geometry set (ruler, square, compases etc)
    • pencils
    • large toolbox for storage
    • stack of "craft" drawers for storage
    • non-marring spudger set which I'm sure will come in handy for poking/prodding in crevices
    • metal bodied Utility knife (and blades)
    • Extra Virgin Olive Oil in lieu of more specialist finishes
    • tonnes of old clothes for rags

    Things I will probably get at a later date once I get a feel for everything (this does not include ad hoc replacement/upgrading of any of the above when needed):

    • butcher's block style work station (as I'll mostly be working at my 10yr old pine desk in my bedroom initially, maybe out in the shed weather permitting)
    • relevant dyes, treatments, etc and relevant applicators
    • basic carving tools (I do not plan on getting into this much but I guess it's always handy to be able pop a pretty border on something special)

    ___

    I know the cost of starting a new hobby from scratch is always going to be a major consideration, but it seems leathercraft is even more so. Yes I know it's no good moaning to other people who have all been there/done that, but starting out on a shoe string is still likely to cost me upwards of £100 ($125 for you colonials ;)).

    Being the sort of person I am, often doing things on a whim, and generally cautious with cash, I do not want to go to the lengths that some do and get The Works in terms of equipment and materials to start with. I don't want to spend a small fortune on something if I don't end up getting decently into it to justify the cost. That said, it seems the general advice in terms of initial outlay is "get the best you can afford" and that's what I'm doing I suppose. I guess there are those out there who have started out with much less, and I have no need nor reason trying to justify what I'm doing.

    I guess in a way I'm secretly hoping that I get sufficiently good enough at the whole "leather thing" that in the long run I can start going to fairs, events, do made-to-order and the like, and be able to become (at least partially) self employed. But that's definitely a long way off.

    I think for me leathercraft will always be a matter of being on a shoestring, at least in the sense of trying to get the best from the least. I've always been enthralled by the way craftsmen of all disciplines in years gone-by have come up with ingenious solutions which even centuries or millennia haven't changed much, and as much as possible I want to keep what I do "low-tech": drawing up templates by hand rather than using PC software, using as traditional methods and tools as possible, and if possible trying to be authentic in style/process with any historical based pieces I produce.

    I (like to think) I am fairly good at improvising, and this will also keep costs down. Who needs a £40 edge slicker when a double-pronged piece of deer antler (free if you know where/when to look) will do? Or expensive black dyes if you can master the likes of vinegaroon and lampblack?

     

  5. Din mid-søn modellen leveres med en godt polstret under føttene podium til basen. Basen kan behandles til lett og bærbar, følsom sammen med imøtekom enslig modell Det vil ikke raskt bli kvitt sammensetning. Dine solide materialer sammen med faktorer som sono stati benyttet under arbeidet effektivt Gjennom å levere en ny lett sammen med pålitelig erfaring.

     

    Din femte variasjon i Supernova Flytt Forbedre yttersåle kommer med en modell som er utviklet for å gi løperen til ny tøff ytre lag som vil skjerme sneaker via ødeleggelse sammen med slitasje. Tøff ly kan være tilgjengelig innen anstendighet silisium kjemisk substans, selv om nok en topp-tier teknologisk innovasjon presenterer pålitelig extender tørke ut og dynket materialer.

     

    Din Adidas Supernova Flytt Forbedre 8 løpere bærer en standard periode. Dine voksne menn sammen med kvinner stiler oppfylle de vanligste størrelsene i forhold til dimensjonering. Ideen beholder mellomstore fot for den mellom bredde utvikling. Den øverste vil bli Incendio utvide effektivt for å sikre ulike foten å tilpasse seg effektivt mens donning ideen.

     

    Din adiWEAR ™ er ofte en silikon kjemisk stoff som brukes i rearfoot del av denne spesifikke løpere. Ideen Øker løper høyt nivå riktig grep på utsiden. Det er tøft sammen med sunn, vedvarende utvidet i motsetning til vanlig silikon yttersåle. Hva er bjørnebær, blir det meste av en ny kroppsvekt, slik at det ikke vil føles som et produkt kan dra sammen http://www.runnernorge.com/adidas-yeezy-boost-350-v2-c-98_264.html din sneaker.

  6. This popular folding coin purse design makes for a great leather project. Small enough to conveniently store in your pocket or purse but able to store a large amount of coins in. It also opens up nice and wide so you can get what you need quickly and easily. To add value and beauty to the purse I have used several types of exotic leather for aesthetics through the circular cutout of the purse frame. I have used both alligator skin and gazelle hide as examples for this tutorial.  A PDF pattern with a detailed list of leather types, tools, and products used in this project can be downloaded from Fischer Workshops. Just click on the following link to be directed to the download page...
    Exotic Leather PDF Pattern Download
    I have also published a video tutorial to demonstrate the step by step process I go through in making the purse. The video is only 10 minutes long, but it took me about 2 hours to complete this project. I chose to stain the leather by hand which is the longest process in making the purse. I suppose if you bought pre-stained leather you could finish this project in about an hour. To see the video just click on the link below... Thanks and Enjoy!

    18 small.jpg

    small 6.jpg

    small alligator.jpg

  7. Leather - Billfold's - ( Hand - Tool'ed ) - Specialist - Want'ed . . .

    Looking - for - Leather - Worker's - who - are - exceptionally - good - at -  ( Hand - Tool'ed ) - Leather - Billfold's - ( both ) - Laced - & - Stitch'ed . . .

    Looking - to - "Mass - Produce" - High - Quality - ( High-end ) - ( Hand - Tool'ed ) - Leather - Billfold's - for - ReSale . . .

    Looking - for - those - who - can - "Copy" - leather - work - that - has - already - been - done - by - other's - with - the - same -  "precision - detail" . . .

    ( and ) - create - new - design's - from - scratch . . .

    Contact - Dave  hood - in - Dallas ,  Texas . . .

    * * *  ( E-mail ) . . . :    Send.Reply.To@gmail.com

    .

    .

    .

  8. Have you ever noticed that every now and then when you’re more observant to the world around you, you see more of what people are doing? You see how they look, the style of their clothes, the amount of cleavage their clothes show, what kind of bag they have and what it’s made of. You see the style of shoes they are wearing and the condition they’re in, the colors of their clothes can tell you about the mood they might be in and so on. These things give us a clearer notion or feeling of their current state of mind, attitude and possibly their deeper character.

    Some of these things will change and vary from day to day and time to time. Like a t-shirt with a message on it won’t be worn the next day, or a hair style today might change in the next coming weeks, shoes change on a daily basis. But some things won’t change for a very long period of time, like a genuine distressed leather bag. And it’s these things that could be considered an extension of a person’s character. These things are usually of sentimental value, mostly because they have endured throughout the years and have been with you on many adventures.

    In many ways the style, fashion, material and color of a bag can give others a sense and feel of the kind of person you might be. Many of us have different intentions when we buy a new bag. Many times we want to impress our friends or co-workers, or we simply need a bag that is most suitable for our line of work or lifestyle. Some of us want to feel like we are more than we actually feel we are, so we buy a bag that reflects a romantic or ideal vision of ourselves. Some of us buy a bag because it simply looks good or goes well with the tone of our skin. Some of us are drawn to a bag because it gives us a sense of security or makes us feel more confident. And then there are those of us that are genuinely completely ecstatic about a particular bag.

    In the end, we buy the bag that we like, not just to look at, but to use, to carry and to show the world who we are. They personify who we are and who we hope to be, almost as if they are a piece of the puzzle to our characters. Just as every genuine leather bag is unique, so is every person who chooses one. They are an extension of our unique characters.

    By Noah Nichols

    Gritty Rustic Leather

  9. Tlhines

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  10. rdl123
    Latest Entry

    Got one side of my rear jockeys tooled up last night.

    Here is a fuzzy blackberry picture:

    tooled rear jockey

    Tooling is still amateurish but I am slowly getting more comfortable with it.

    I would appreciate feedback on what I can do to make it better.

    Thanks,

    Ron L

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    Hi to Everyone! I Love making purses and I'm working with faux leathers/vinyls before I try my hand at real leather. I'm wondering if anyone knows what type of sealant/ edge finisher used on outer finished edges of faux vinyl purses sold in stores? I've tried using edge kote and other types of sealants, but just isn't the same as the ones I see in the stores. Any input is greatly appreciated! Thank You all and have a great day! Happy Sewing!

  11. "I think the UEFA - and the FA Premier League and - protect must also decide standard fans demanding fans as a special case no longer home fans must be loaded into the equivalent area also prohibit" categorization away "so fans outside all clubs should be calculated the same lowest price in the same competition in the same season.You now reserve some of the cheap FIFA coins, which can prevent the playing of the game, due to the lack of FIFA 16 coins, the game was forced to dropped.

    "Clubs have to accept that they do not sell tickets in a normal competitive market than Fanclub loyalty means a monopoly, so it should not be applied and the economics of supply and normal demand.

    "You would not be able to do in other industries -. Banks, utilities, etc., where prices are regulated, since the market is not working effectively"

    FC Midtjylland has not responded to requests for comment Tuesday.

    "He has to learn what is normal, but he learned a lot in recent years and has made great progress in its development. For us it was an opportunity. You can not always make transfers a problem to solve.

    "I know people say that our defense is not very good, we have to defend as a better team, especially not to solve a problem - .. It is a transfer with a very good prospect for the future, long-term thing. but it can help right away and that's very good for us. " Do not know will not affect the sale of the game FIFA 16, cheap FIFA 16 coins will not affect sales?

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    jesippel
    Latest Entry

    I need help my W153 is no catching the bobbin and the top tread is winding around the bobbin case and jamming the machine. I have the hook set right and am unhinged the right needle and treads to match. Any help would help...

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    First of all: This is not my design. I found it on one of the many lurking sessions on Pinterest/Etsy. If anybody knows the original designer, please do let me know and I will gladly give him/her credit.

    Secondly: I do not yet own the proper equipment.

    After trying the stitching bit for a while on some pieces of scrap leather I wanted to "create" something.

    So here is the result, a wallet.

    blogentry-69008-0-09190500-1453223308_th

    blogentry-69008-0-18447300-1453223107_th

    blogentry-69008-0-17508300-1453223194_th

    blogentry-69008-0-20079100-1453222952_th

    I learned a fair few things while working with scraps. Preparation is key.

    blogentry-69008-0-05301300-1453222807_th

    blogentry-69008-0-30567400-1453222628_th

    blogentry-69008-0-94195700-1453222461_th

    I am moderately satisfied with the results.

    Plenty of room for improvement but I will be using this new home-made wallet.

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    Anyone know where I can find the one issue specific of LCSMJ? I am Missing Jul/Aug. 1991. LCSMJ does not have it so I an reaching out. Any ideas?

  12. I have to say I am really happy and impressed right now. I was not sure where to give a shout out to these guys but I found leatherworker and thought it would be a good place. I ordered a Corriente Saddle form http://thesalebarn.com and I cannot be happier. I have ridden it about 10 times since out of the box. It even has tooling on the roughout! SO excited and happy to get riding it and roping agian. If you are looking for a good quality saddle please visit these guys. Thank you.

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    Johnboy Richter
    Latest Entry

    Johnboy Richter here, I am new and would like to ask if anyone has any experience with the many diferent sizes of needles for the Singer 7-33. I have a needle on it (but I think it is for canvas ) and could take it to a local sewing store if I were home. ( I work off shore ) I looked all over the internet tryng to find cross reference charts and or specific needles for sale and could not make any sense of it. I have a GA5-1 and it does well but it does not have a walking foot and I dont want to mar the veg tan leather I am lining belts with. anyway, any help with finding good leather working needles would be greatly appreciated. R/jcr

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    blog-0469120001450756231.jpgWell, the last orders are out the door, the shop is closed and I'm packed up to make the trip to Atlanta to spend the holidays with my grand children. Had a good year, got lots of tips from folks here on Leatherworker.net, my wife and I are retired and just "Living the Dream". Gonna go play some music, have some good times, and then get back in the shop and start getting stuff made up for some music festivals this spring followed by my annual trip to Resogat in Wilkesboro, NC. to sell instrument straps to unsuspecting musicians. Goals for next year, improve carving skills, design some new products for the musician trades.

    Chief

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    I have a 1930s singer k7.5 which I think is missing a thread guide or I'm not threading it correctly . I can't get my hands on a diagram and any pic I can source on the net is vague . Is there Anyone who knows this machine ? It has a vibrating pressed foot and a shuttle bobbin . Any help appreciated

    Thank you

  13. Ive got an adler 467 for sale it has a walking foot, reverse stitch, adjustable stitch length and a stitch guide it comes with a stand and has a servo motor and the stand is on rollers. And I would sell the head seperatly.. Im asking $1300 or best offer!! if your interested i can send pics.

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    thunter9
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    blog-0003671001448649546.jpgthis is the saddle

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    Isla
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    What is the best sewing machine for sewing hair-on cowhide?

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    horsewisperer
    Latest Entry

    SO, i got another english saddle at a local flea market. and its so old or has not been cleaned in so long one of the knee flaps has curled...i have no idea how to un curl it, its really stiff and hard to move. not a happy camper. i know how to clean saddles but this one is a lost cause on me. help would be greatly appreatied.