Singer Featherweight Questions

I received the parts I ordered for the new/old Featherweight I
acquired, and I have a question for all of you Featherweight
Phanatics. I have never owned one or even used one before this recent
acquisition. So my questions is: How fast does this machine sew? In
relation to any of the sewing machines that I currently own, this
little girl seems to be, how shall I state this, "Leisurely" in it's
speed. Is this a normal way for a machine like this to sew? As you can
see, the stitch quality is pretty good, for this much used machine,
and it should be adequate for piecing, while on the road. I am
wondering if the motor is producing all of the "Oomph" that it should,
or if I need to have it serviced; as in rebuilt. If it is not supposed
to be a speed demon, then that is fine, as the pace is fast enough to
get the job done. I would imagine that the older machines might not be
able to sew as fast as the modern machine due to the differences in
manufacturing and metallurgy, and electrics, between a 40 year time
span. Although, I have sewn on a Bernina machine of the same age and
it seemed to be capable of sewing as fast as my more modern Berninas.
Any input would be helpful, to me in bringing this little girl back to
full capabilities, that I know she would want to do. Below is a sample
of the stitches I did after bolting the new belt on and firing her
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John, Some of the old FW's are just slower than others. If you had a room full of FW's they would all probably perform differently. They are for the most part slower than your other machines though. Good cleaning and new motor brushes would help. That has been a help to some of my older Singers. The brushes should be pretty available online. The controller can probably stand to be cleaned too. I bet Irene can be more help than me. Carolyn was a long time Featherweight Fanatic and she is sure missed when it comes to FW discussions. : ( I just dug out my copy of Nancy-Srebro Johnson's FW book and she blames a sluggish motor on 4 things. Oil gumming and dirt, old motor grease, thread jamming and the foot controller. If you get a hold of her book she gives a run down of how to address all of these but you should have a sense of how to on your own. The book is handy to have otherwise too though. Lots of info online with diagrams that are easier to understand than my ramblings. HTH, TAria
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I have seen reference to that book. I will probably pick it up. The foot controller is the more modern kind, not the one with the button, like some of the earlier ones. No apparent adjustment there. I can take it apart and see what it looks like inside and clean it up a bit. I was going to order some more things and I will get some brushes for the motor, but I didn't want to spend a lot of money to start with as I didn't even know if it would work. Now that I see it can sew, I think I can get it back to factory original with little trouble, but my not having a frame of reference was a little disconcerting. Thanks,
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Do you have the manual? I'm assuming you have cleaned and oiled the machine and lubed the motor (if it has the lubrication tubes).
Check to make sure the belt is not too tight, they are not designed to be as tight as other machines.
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Judie in Penfield NY
Thanks to Judie's helpful advice. I added a considerable stitches per hour to the speed. I slacked off the tension of the belt and that helped considerably. This group is an amazing fount of knowledge.
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Sounds like you and Bonnie are doing well together, John. You know the old saying about it takes a while to get to know each other, glad it's working out!
Ginger in CA
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You're not kidding. I had no idea how wide our scope was until I suggested that somebody get out her bow and arrows to solve a problem. It turned out that there was a state champion master archer here. Polly
"John" Thanks to Judie's helpful advice. I added a considerable stitches per hour to the speed. I slacked off the tension of the belt and that helped considerably. This group is an amazing fount of knowledge.
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Polly Esther

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