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About sandmanred

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    Just getting started with heavy sewing and leather

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    Sewing machines
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  1. So far, so good. Thanks for the threading advice. I got it with one bobbin. So far I've ordered 2 different types that claim to fit a Pfaff 138 but so far none of them fit. They are all too wide bye at least 1 mm. Where is a reliable source for bobbins that fit? I need part Pfaff 9033 or 91-009033-05.
  2. I'd check your hook for burrs and also check hook the timing but I'd suspect something on the hook is abrading the top thread. It gets pretty thick there and the tension it takes to pull the top thread down will increase with the thickness
  3. Great, thanks! I got as a head only. It was seized due to being stored outside. Luckily the only thing seized was the hook spindle. All it took was some penetrating oil and some light tapping to free is up. Timing was close, the hook would kiss the needle when the needle was in the far right zig-zag position. A little adjustment and that was taken care of. One question about thread up, again the on line manuals I can find are hard to read. I think the photo shows pretty clearly what I did and it does seem to work but it'd be good to know the intended thread up. The video shows #20 needle with T90 thread going through 4 layers of vinyl coated canvas. This machine will definitely handle heavier needles than advertised. https://youtu.be/QyTlOcVOwdc
  4. I know this is not a great leather machine but this is by far the best website for help on sewing machines. I got this one as a loose head. It does sew as is but is clearly missing a few parts. Looking for advice on what the essential missing parts are. It seems to have two tension discs sets. Not sure the thread up when you have them both. On line manuals I can find are printed so poorly I can't make out the thread up. It seems to sew okay with the one tension stack but it shouldn't be too hard to find the parts to refurbish the missing one. It also looks like I at least need a thread guide at the bottom of the needle bar. There are other missing guides but they don't look too essential? I think B in the model means it's the more heavy duty model. Not sure what the S means Any other advice for this machine is welcome.
  5. Please post a photo of the bottom of your presser foot, I'll explain why. Here's my story and theory about what may be happening. I had a similar presser foot to the one in your video. I could get nice balanced stitches. But then when I'd change to another foot like a roller foot or zipper foot I had to back way off on the top tension. And then take the tension back up when I switched the foot back into the machine. I determined that with the foot like yours and going forward as the stitches get pinched between the presser and the needle plate and thus requiring higher tension than say a roller foot or zipper foot. In your case when you go in reverse the stitch just made is not under the presser foot so the tension set for going forward is now way to high for going in reverse. Here's a picture of what I did to resolve my problem. I filed a small relief in the bottom of the the foot like yours so that the stitch being formed doesn't get pinned to the needle plate by the foot. Now I can switch feet with no tension adjustments. I think this same relief could solve your problem.
  6. I missed your point, got it now. If you can get plate of the same thickness it shouldn't be too hard to cut the outside to shape. Then you could drill the corners of the cut out for the feed dog and use a jewelers saw to cut the waste away and clean up the corners with a file.
  7. If it can be dismantled it's possible it can be saved. Once it's all cleaned up you can better assess the condition. If there's wear or corrosion severe enough a there's a chance a person with a TIG welder could build up the worn area. Then recreate the grooves. Filing is a not out of the question. I'd look for the triangular shaped files used to sharpen handsaws. With some clever clamping you could probably guide the file to create uniform spacing in the teeth.
  8. Awesome! Thanks for the suggestions and specifics. I need to digest it all a bit to make sense of it but I think I get most of it.
  9. sandmanred


    Price reduced to $600
  10. I made this wallet of 2-3 oz veg tan. It's way too thick and stiff to be of any use. I did make a practice one of much thinner leather. I could see the leather for this one was thicker but didn't anticipate how much it would add up in thickness. It's way too thick and stiff to be of any use. I could see it part way through but decided I could learn something by finishing it even though it's pretty much worthless as a wallet. What leather would you recommend for this style and where would you get it?
  11. @destes do you have any numbers cast into the bottom like mine? I'm bound and determined to figure out this numbering scheme.
  12. I hope I'm not hijacking conversation but I've got the same machine and question about it's vintage. It looks roughly the same as both of the previous machines in the post. My Pfaff 545 has a similar riveted tag below the model number and no serial imprinted on the casting, there's a 'plaque' in the casting but it's got nothing there. The riveted tag has similar 6 digit number, 511968. There's some numbers on the bottom of the casting but I can't make sense of them.
  13. One thing you can try with the clutch motor is to oil the clutch plate. If you open the clutch there's usually a metal plate and a cork face plate that one of is actuated by the foot pedal. Soak the cork side with sewing machine oil for a few minutes and wipe off the excess. Be sure to just do the clutch side, there's usually a brake that engages by the return spring for the foot pedal, you want to leave that part dry. Oiling the clutch has improved low speed control for me on a number of machines and I have always been able to get full speed as well.
  14. There are some pretty good videos on youtube that show you how to time a machine. You should be able to find specifics to your machine in a manual for it. But I think the general points on a rotary hook are the same. You want the needle to lift a specific distance before the tip of the hook crosses the needle, and you want the hook to cross about in the middle of the scarf. And you want the hook to come as close to the needle as possible without touching. Here's one from @Uwe Even if you can't find the specifics for your machine it's not a big deal. I'd guess on your model you want to needle to lift about 2 mm or 3/32 at the time the hook crosses the needle. I've found the distances they spec to be a little difficult to measure and I will still sometimes deviate a bit to get it sew nicely in forward and reverse. I
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