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Londonfog

Is the Pfaff 238 appropriate for heavier duty leather work?

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I'm completely new to this world, but eventually would like to work on some leather upholstery like for a couch. I'd also like to work on raw denim as well, and probably some outdoor fabrics for yard furniture and cushions.

Anyways, there is a Pfaff 238 available semi-locally and I was wondering if it's appropriate for leather work. It's not a walking foot, which I think is considered a major knock against it, but it has the advantage of being local, working, and seemingly affordable.

To be most specific, its full model number is the 238-0-6ASX.0 So it's definitely a 238-0 variant, and I think the "A" makes it able to do a slightly narrower stitch at a higher RPM than the B variant.

I gathered that data from a manual someone shared on here, and the manual states that the 238 is an updated version of the Pfaff 138, so I imagine the machines are very similar in material capabilities if anybody only has experience with the 138.

 

Also, what would a good price be for a running 238-0 with motor and table? 

 

Thanks in advance for any help! 

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16 minutes ago, DrmCa said:

No.

Care to comment on the other questions, as well as maybe the max capabilities to expect? 

 

I ask for the sake of posterity, because both the 138 and 238 do show up in searches, and are well spoken of, but lack specific details on what to expect from them in regards to working with leather and cost. 

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Hi,

that's a highspeed garment sewing machine designed to do 4500 stitches/minute. The "A" in Pfaff-designations refers to light capacity, lightweight materials, the "S" refers to Stoff, german for fabric. Think of curtains, shirts, bedsheets. I assume, posterity will be able to find out, because, as you write, they do show up in searches. 
Cost varies, 138s go for 40 to 70 Euros in Germany. They can handle shoe uppers as in ladies' boots, not workboots or walking boots. Much of the practical usability will depend on the motor and the presser feet.

Greets

Ralf C.

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3 minutes ago, Kohlrausch said:

Hi,

that's a highspeed garment sewing machine designed to do 4500 stitches/minute. The "A" in Pfaff-designations refers to light capacity, lightweight materials, the "S" refers to Stoff, german for fabric. Think of curtains, shirts, bedsheets. I assume, posterity will be able to find out, because, as you write, they do show up in searches. 
Cost varies, 138s go for 40 to 70 Euros in Germany. They can handle shoe uppers as in ladies' boots, not workboots or walking boots. Much of the practical usability will depend on the motor and the presser feet.

Greets

Ralf C.

Awesome, I think that's exactly the info people would want to find out. 

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Maybe I have overlooked it, but upstate where? Could help to recommend local brands. 

A (used) Pfaff 138 B with  standard-, teflon- and roller presser foot and a (new) slow running servomotor with 40 mm pulley might be a good start. Total cost would be about 220 Euros over here. Pfaff 335-clones (made by Shanggong)  with stand and slow running servo motor can be had for 880 Euros in Germany plus 70 Euros shipping (incl. sales tax).

Greets

Ralf C.

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43 minutes ago, Kohlrausch said:

upstate where?

IP address resolves to US wireless.  Upstate often refers to upstate New York.  @Londonfog It is a good idea to identify the area you are from so you can get the best help that is available. Vague references don't help. This site has members from all over the world.

Tom

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All this is in the FAQ and has been beaten to death.:deadsubject:

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58 minutes ago, DrmCa said:

All this is in the FAQ and has been beaten to death.:deadsubject:

Yeah, but you can imagine my confusion when searching the leather working forum and seeing that people use the very same machine and say it works great, but don't say what it's great at, or at least not it's maximum capabilities. 

 

Then add on to that the videos online of people sewing pretty thick leather (at least more than a domestic machine), without a walking foot, and they're not even trying to sell it. 

 

Then further add in that there is a running version of a low maintenance, reputable, highly reliable, machine with motor and table being locally sold for about $200, and you can probably guess that I felt a need to ask the question. 

 

So I at least had the question answered for anybody that might come searching in the future with the same query. 

 

I did find a lot of great info on this site about the machine (even for the 138, which I searched separately), but at least now nobody has to ask the question if they use the search function because I've tagged the thread with every necessary piece of information to find the model. 

 

So yeah, I'm a beginner asking a familiar question, but at least I gave the community a thread with a unique answer that should help future newbies. 

 

And yes you guessed right, upstate NY. And even more specific, Central NY, lol. 

 

Thanks for the great info everyone 

Edited by Londonfog

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If you don't need the zigzag a Singer 31 will give you the same sewing capacity and may be easier to find.

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The Pfaff 138 is a good buy at $200. There are two versions I know of, the standard 4mm (maybe 4.5mm) zig-zag and a 6mm zig-zag. I currently own both of them. The 6mm is harder to find and I would't pass one up at $200. It may not be the best choice as a leather machine but you will always have a need to sew fabrics and the zig-zag option will add to its usefulness.

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I recently learned I have a Singer 237 as a hand-me-down/granny machine, so I'll most likely be OK in the decorative/zigzag stitch department. It can also probably handle some raw denim on the thinner side of things, so I should probably personally aim for a good leather machine with a walking foot. 

 

I was really hoping to get lucky with a $200 leather machine, though, lol. 

Edited by Londonfog

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20 hours ago, Londonfog said:

Yeah, but you can imagine my confusion when searching the leather working forum and seeing that people use the very same machine and say it works great, but don't say what it's great at, or at least not it's maximum capabilities.

TLDR. This is why there is a sticky FAQ thread where Wizcraft et al summarized everything after answering this same question a few dozen times.

Read the sticky threads, it's all there.

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