Big Sioux (sorry I can't figure out how to easily do the multiple quote boxes like you did)
Can I post the book here as a pdf? I've always been an internet "taker"....so time to be "giver" as the copy I have is very clear.
I actually did the screwdriver method before I read that in the book...and I can adjust it easily when I do that. Too bad I scratched the knob stupid, stupid me! it's ok, but, really, I know better!
I'll grab some scrap leather...even considering disassembly of a crappy western saddle to use the fender leather. I also do a lot of wool felting and fulling--to 1" or so...so it will be neat to see how it handles sewing hard wool to leather.
Any idea of age based on SN 4843? The book says 1936, but I have letters from '25.
I have about 13 needles! 10 size 2 and 3 size 3 I think, plus one that was in the machine when I got it. I'll send pics of the original packaging and these super neat letters from 1925 and 1940. I love knowing about where these machines were in their first lives! Interestingly enough, my first thought is that this old guy must have sold the useful ones, kept the singer for nostalgia, and parked the landis and champion in his basement and barn because they were likely missing parts, etc, thus boat anchors. I think I was very wrong....it seems maybe he kept his favorite ones? It's like he used them...and then time stopped. This is why they aren't rusty I guess. There appear to be no marks from inappropriate use. If the family parts with that Singer--I may need to sneak there in the dark of night as hubby is probably at his toleration point. (cast iron gear/cam based loom called the Weaver's Delight on the front porch...need I say more)
Lord knows I'm crazy, but how much would I adore having the original burner that heated the boiler? Flames + cast iron machine = in my book. Seems like the ones I've seen pics of don't have that boiler attached at all. I guess that could give you more room for sewing cylindrical items though.
Wizcrafts: so the needle would pierce the leather, dip into the wax pot below, and then go back up, correct? I did read the instructions for waxing the bobbin thread. Very interesting! I'm an avid hand spinner--wools, silks, etc,--but haven't tried linen although I do have a set up that should work for linen. NOW I'm considering doing a linen 2-ply just to see if I can do it. Even if I only did it once, it would be so neat to do it 100% the old way at least once. I'm a little surprised that waxed linen lasts that long. I do have some OLD OLD side saddles, and the panels are thin leather on top and linen on the "horse side." However, this linen fabric doesn't look linen at all--it looks like cotton ticking fabric. I'll look more carefully at what thread was on it, but the bobbin looks linen-ish to me. Same as what's in the Champion's top thread...
I GREATLY appreciate the help and encouragement you guys are providing. I am probably considered a little young to do these crazy things (my family understands a little...anyone crazy enough to call me a friend thinks I'm nuts OR they are even weirder and want to play with the antique toys)...so the experience you guys have is so valuable to me. I am at that age where I realize that people can't nail 2 boards together...and most people have ZERO skills. Thus, I'm watching all of this expertise die away as people in their 80s and 90s all pass I didn't even realize there was a really old guy here in WV that passed last year...apparently, saddle maker for decades, and he had a Landis. We never know about these people until it's too late! This is why--to my hubby's dismay--that I do dedicate time to getting some of my equipment out at festival demos...especially my old sock knitter. Kids (and mostly men) love that crazy thing and love to watch it work...and at least the skill isn't entirely dead. I wish there was a festival for ALL of this stuff.
I've always wanted a stitcher like this--and it just sort of happened. Now with my intense desire to ride side saddle again as an adult, and realizing I can't afford what I need AT ALL, I'm now down a very deep rabbit hole...
I can't thank you guys enough! will try to get pics asap.