Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Singer Featherweight 221 Facebook Group

Have a little facebook group for Featherweights at

Singer Featherweight 221 Facebook Group

Been getting quite a few new people on the group.  Just click on over and request to join!

Here's a nice link for y'all to save and use!

How to oil your sewing machine - and the Featherweight is shown in the example.  Nice!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Updated prices and items for the Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine -

Celebrating over 16 years on the "Net"
Updated April 2014


(We do business the old fashioned way, you email us or write us what you want, send that check, then we send you the items.  You'll need to call 580 765-6125, and talk to Deloris to get prices on combined items, or items where it is indicated, shipping not included.  Thank you!)

New Singer Featherweight 221 Facebook Group

Special 2
Updated Nancy Johnson-Srebro Featherweight Book - 2001 Edition for $24.00 - includes postage (U.S. only)

Special 7
Buttonholer for Featherweight,  Featherweight Dustcover for $17.00 - includes postage (U.S. only) NEW Reduced Price!

**NEW** Alpha Sew Patchwork Foot with GUIDE, $16.00, Includes Shipping/Handling, U.S. Only.

Other goodies:
  • Tuckers for $8.50 (Shipping not included).***Small shipping costs for misc. items***.
Additional items:
  • Original Seam Guide - $6.00 (Includes Shipping) 
Unusual Accessories:  Call for item details and prices of these unusual Singer Sewing Machine Accessories.

How do I order these items? Mail a check or money order, and specify the item desired, along with your return address, and send (and make the check out to):

Deloris Pickens
538 Virginia Avenue
Ponca City, Ok 74601

Any Additional Questions Please Either Email Deloris at, or call her at 580-765-6125.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

What Every New Singer Featherweight 221/222 Owner Should Know

What Every New Featherweight Owner Needs to Know about their Featherweight!

Deloris Pickens's Good Things To Know About Your Singer Featherweight Notes...
Oiling Your 221 machine needs to be oiled for every 8 hours of use. Use only sewing machine oil and oil all the places that it shows you to oil in your manual You need to lube your motor about once a year and probably the gears about twice a year. Never use oil in your motor.

Clean out you bobbin case area after every sewing project. Be sure when you put your needle plate back on that the bobbin case base tip is inserted between the two little bars on the bottom of your needle plate. Your machine will not sew if that is not done correctly.

Sometimes you need to adjust your belt espically if the machine is running hard. To do this loosen the screw that mounts the motor and move the motor up or down a little bit so that the belt is not to tight.

Follow instructions in your manual for threading your machine. I like to use Gutterman thread for my sewing. The machines were built to use No 50 cotton thread and they really sew best with all cotton thread.

Smell in Case:
To get most of the smell out of your case, first clean the bottom plate on your machine and take the old felt off and replace it with clean felt if necessary. Set the box outside in the hot sun for several days and it should smell better.

The original bobbins work the best in the machine but be wary of the carded bobbins. Buy your bobbins from a dealer that sells them in bulk as these are made in Japan and are better bobbins than the carded ones.

Foot Pedals:
There are two different foot pedals for the 221 machine. The early ones are all metal and were in production for about 5 years. The later pedals are made of bakelite and are good pedals. The speed of your machine depends on your pedal. If your machine only wants to go fast you can take the pedal apart and adjust the screw on the back of the pedal. You can also rewire a pedal when the wiring goes bad. Dealers have new lead cords for sale and they work fine.

Featherweight Attachments:
The original 6 attachments that came with your machine are ruffler,narrow hemmer, wide hemmer, gathering foot, binder and edge stitcher. Also included was a screw driver for the machine and a screw driver to adjust the tension.

Trouble Free Sewing:
The main way to keep out of trouble with your 221 machine is to never, never, never sew unless you have material under your needle. If you do that you will get thread around the bobbin case area and is is the pits to get out. If you can not get the thread out easy spray the area with WD-40 every 15 mins for about 2 hours and it will usually dissolve the thread.

General Rules:
Don't drop your featherweight, don't store in in a damp basement or a hot attic, keep it clean and it should give you years of use. Read your manual and do what it says to do and you will save yourself lots of trouble.

Jesse Clarke
Las Vegas, NV 
Permission Granted to use this article(s) on Gaileee's FW Web Site 1998


Hi Feathers:

Since most of us didn't come into the world with a silver FW in our mouths,
and have been newbies at some point in our collectors lives,  the 4 things
that seem to plague new FW owners, at least in my experience, are:

I can't tell you how many FW owners in classes I've taken do not know how to
put the bobbin into the  bobbin case properly.  Since many FWs come to new
owners without the instruction book, (not that many read them if there is one)
they don't realize that the FW bobbin goes into the case just the opposite of
most of the modern day machines.  Holding the bobbin in your right hand, tail
end of thread in your left hand, the thread comes up, over the top,  pulling
to the left, COUNTERCLOCKWISE.  Read this part again!

When I got my first FW, I couldn't understand why the thread kept breaking!
All 3 of my FWs hiss & spit if I put the bobbin in wrong.

I've also seen new FW owners wind the bobbin, remove the bobbin, leaving the
little wheel in contact with the handwheel.  As they commence sewing, there's
soon a horrible whining sound coming from the darling little FW.  English

This is where my 3 really get their panties/ BVDs in a wad!  Put that needle
in backwards and they all 3 will throw themselves on the floor, pitch a fit,
hold their breath, and won't sew.  End of story!  The flat side of the needle
must be to the LEFT.

The quirky thing with threading the machine is putting the thread into the eye
of the needle:  It goes from RIGHT to LEFT.  This is opposite from my more
modern (non Singer machine)

Please! Give these wonderful machines a drink of OIL  (38 oil points, outside,
inside the head, and underneath) & a dose of LUBRICANT to the motor...DO NOT
oil the motor!  Some of these machines have sat untouched for up to 50+ years.
A little TLC is only humane.  How well would you work if put in a basement or
attic for years without food or bath?  

If you need instruction manuals, for goodness sake--ASK!  Someone of us on
this list will point you in the right direction for obtaining one or a photo
copy.  Deloris Pickens (EMAIL: provides Nice Reproduction 
Featherweight Manuals $7 (US only) shipping/handling included. 

After we have owned our FWs for a while, they become as familiar to us as our
kids or pets--we know all the idiosycracies, etc.  We forget what was a
puzzlement when we were the newbies.  There are more experienced FWF out there
who are able to add to my list.  These are my recollections as a newbie and
observations of other FW owners.
Since most of you sew with the machines in your collection, at least the ones
that aren't museum pieces--is there anything special you do to keep the bed
and/or decals from being scratched or worn?

Jess in what was once Las Vegas,NV, but is now just a 'burb of CA!

It never fails:  when you post an answer, the question is asked the following

Cooking oil, Crisco, even sewing machine oil!  Yep--that's the cheapest, non-
caustic way to remove glued on stickers.  Dab it on with a Q-Tip or your
finger (handy little gadget) let it sit for a spell,  it comes off like magic;
won't damage the paint on your machine, either.  
There's a commercial product GOO GONE that's supposed to take out all sorts of
stuff--but the oil works just as well--I've tried both.

For Beau J. Gales:  There was a thread a while back about polishes/ waxes used
on SM-one of the FWFs referred to a product by Johnson called Klean N Shine.
She'd used this  on her machine and was pleased with the results.  She lost
the URL for Johnson:;  Ironically,
on the website product page, no mention is made of Klean N Shine.  I wound up
calling the ph. # 1-800-558-5252 to find out if it was still on the market.
Yes, it can be found at Wal-Mart, K-Mart, Target and at Ace or Tru-Value
Hardware stores.  I've not been able to find it at the local grocery stores as
I once could.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Common Causes of Singer Featherweight Machine Trouble

Deloris Pickens Thoughts on Common Causes of
Singer Featherweight Machine Trouble

Causes of Upper Thread Breaking
  • Machine improperly threaded (see instruction book).
  • Tensions too tight.
  • Needle bent or having blunt point.
  • Thread too coarse for size of needle (see instruction book).
  • Needle too fine for size of thread and material to be sewn.
  • Burr on needle hole in throat plate (caused from sewing over pins or breaking needle).
  • Burr on needle hole in throat plate (caused by breaking needle when pulling material from machine).
  • Needle incorrectly set.
  • Needle too long for machine, or not all the way up in the clamp.
  • Take-up spring bent or broken (see adjuster for repair).
  • Tension disks worn so that thread works in groove.
Causes of Lower Thread Breaking
  • Improper threading of bobbin case (see instruction book).
  • Tension too tight.
  • Thread wound unevenly on bobbin or bobbin wound too full.
  • Spring on bobbin case worn to sharp edge.
  • Burr on underside of throat plate (sometimes caused by sewing over pins or breaking needle).
To Avoid Breaking Needles
  • Do not sew heavy seams with a needle to fine.
  • Use proper size needle for thread and material to be sewn.
  • See that the presser foot or attachments are securely fastened to the bar and that the needle does not strike the edge of the hole or slot in the presser foot or attachment.
  • Do not pull the material to one side when taking it from the machine. The needle may become bent and strike the back of the needle hole.
  • Do not bend the needle when pulling out the needle before cutting thread.
  • Do not leave pins in the material after basting and sew over them with the machine.
Skipping Stitches
  • Needle not correctly or accurately set into the needle bar, blunt, or bent.
  • Needle too small for the thread used.
Stitches Looping
  • Looped stitches are usually caused by improper tension. If the loop is on the upper side, it may be corrected by tightening the under tension. If the loop is on the under side, it may usually be corrected by tightening the upper tension.
For Average Sewing Keep Your Tension Set on 4.

Before trying to adjust a tension problem:

  1. Be sure the machine is properly threaded.
  2. That the bobbin is inserted correctly
  3. That the needle is inserted correctly
  4. That the needle is good and the brand of thread is of good quality.
Other reasons fore tension problems are any kind of chemical contamination caused by fusible interfacing or things that have glue involved in the sewing process. If you feel that you need to adjust the tension after checking all these things then only adjust the top tension. To increase tension on the top side of your stitching lower the top tension a little at a time until the tension balances. To increase the tension on the bottom side of the stitching increases the top tension until the stitch balances.

Always insert the needle with the flat side to the left.

Be sure the bobbin turns counterclockwise when you pull on the thread with the bobbin inserted in the bobbin case.

If you have skipping or broken threads, try a new needle inserted properly.

Use Schmetz needles for best results. Universal point needles for average fabrics. Ballpoint needles for stretch fabrics. Sharp point needles for dense fabrics. You can also use Quilting needles. Topstitch needles and Leather needles. Remember you cannot change your needle too often. A good rule of thumb is to change needles every other project. When in doubt change it! The size of the needles is important. Use a 70/10 for delicate fabrics. Use a 80/12 or a 90/14 for average fabrics. For heavy fabrics use a 100/16 or 110/18.

It is very important to use good threads such as Gutermann, Mettler or Signature. This is especially true for skipping and broken thread problems.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Date Your Featherweight

Dating & Rating your Featherweight
Did you know?That you can call the Singer company and get the birthdate of yourmachine. You must have the serial number, of course. The Singer # is1-800-4-SINGER

Singer Dating, US: 1-800-4Singer

Singer Dating, US: 1-800-877-7762

Singer Industrials Dating/Info., US: 1-800-342-6808

Dating your Singer machine









AI....1948 [yes that is i]

















White fw 1968 - 70

According to Nancy Johnson-Sbrebro and her book which is a reprint of the
original instruction book for Featherweights the following dates apply as
to the production date of your machine:
AD 1934
 AE    1936
 AF    1938
 AG    1941
 AH    1948
 AJ    1950
 AK    1952
 AL    1955
 AM    1956
 AN or higher - unknown
 AI    Skipped
 N....1900               L....1901           K....1902
 B....1904               H....1906           D....1908
 G--0,999,999....1909    G--2,500,000....1910
 G--4,400,000....1913    G--6,500,000....1916
 G--8,500,000....1919    G--9,999,999....1921
 F....1924               Y....1925
Model    Years made  Comments
24-50                treadle, small
27                   treadle
28-4                 hand-cranked, 3/4 size, vibrating shuttle
31kls                industrial
44kl3    1925        treadle
66                   treadle, drop-in bobbin
66-1                 treadle
99k                  3/4 size, hand-cranked or electric portable
99-13                knee-press
99k-28               portable
127                  treadle
128                  portable
132k6                industrial
185j     1960-62     green portable
191                  industrial
221      1933-56     featherweight
221-1       "
221b     1968-70     white  "
221j                 tan    ", beige
221k     1941-64     black  ", off white
221k1       "
221k5       "
221k7       "        white  "
221?        "        blue, green ?
222k     1941-64     free-arm
241-12               industrial
301      1953-59     slant needle; straight needle
301a        "        tan
301a        "        beige
327p                 plastic machine
331k4                industrial
338                  turquoise
591                  industrial, computer unit
Capri                new, white
Toys - model 20 ?
   Sewhandy ?

In 1905 some Singer's were manufactured under the name of 
Wheeler & Wilson

Queries: are these Singer machines?
Model #2 treadle born 6/26/1893
Toys - Shoe Patch 1912 ?
   Little Giant ?
34, 36, 38 ? (are these model #'s)
Godzilla ?
Date: 23 Feb 96 11:30:57 EST
From: Graham Forsdyke (
Subject: Contributions/Factory designations

There's been some confusion over Singer factory designation codes, some,
understandably, believing that E was for England.
The following list is for all Singer "factories". I am using the word factory to
describe a location where machines were either built or assembled.
A Anderson South Carolina
AP Lagos Nigera
B       Bonnieres France
BE      Casablanca Morocco
BG      Bancock Thailand
C       Campinas Brazil
CH      Santiago Chili
Cy      Ratmalana Ceylon
E       Elizabeth NJ USA
F       Taytay Phillipines
G       Karlsruhe Germany
GH      Tema Ghana
H       Karachi Pakistan
HC      Chittigong East Pakistan
J       St Jaohns Canada
K       Clydebank Scotland
L       Bogota Colombia
LM      Kinshasha Congo
M       Monza Italy
ML      Petaling Malaysia
N       Taichung Taiwan
P       Penrith NSW Australia
PR      Lima Peru
Q       Johannesburg S Africa
R       Querataro Mexico
T       Delhi India
TN      Tunis Tunisia
U       Utsunomiga Japan
V       Buenos Aires Argentinia
VN      Saigon South Vietnam
Y       Maltepe Turkey
Z       Alcenon France
There were also "factories" in Wurselen in Germany and Alencon in France but I
can find no record of designations for them.
Just before the Russian Revolution 1917 Singer built a vast plant in Russia but
after the dust settled it was taken over by the Bolsheviks. Whether it was given
a designating letter I do not know. The orginal showroom still stands in Moscow.
It is now a bookstore.

Date: Sat, 24 Feb 1996 18:39:56 -0500
From: Jim Wagner (
Subject: Different FW models
Hi Fellow Fanatics,
I was going to reply to Sheila via E-Mail but I thought this may be
of more general interest.

There were four different models of the featherweight the 221-1,
221K4, 221K5,and 221K7.

It sounds like you have a model 221K4. That is the only model of FW
that Singer made with the switch on the light housing, all the others have
the switch on the bed of the machine.

Another check you can make to determine which model you have is to
check the model number of the motor (see the plate mounted on the motor).
Each of the four models of the featherweights were originally furnished with
a different motor.
Model 221-1   Model Series 3  Motor
Model 221K4   Model CAK7  Motor
Model 221K5   Model CAJ6-8  Motor
Model 221K7   Model CAK8-8  Motor
Another distinguishing feature of the 221K4 is it is the only
featherwieght model that has R.F. suppression with grounded wiring. All
that means is that it shouldn't interfere with radio or T.V. signals and
there should be a three prong plug to insert into the wall outlet.
Sorry I don't have any definitave information about which colors
each of the models were painted.

Jim in Thomaston GA
Date: 26 Feb 96 12:05:31 EST
From: Graham Forsdyke (
Subject: CONTRIBUTIONS/To Lisa: Re factory designations.

The factory designation, if it was not made in the USA, followed the model
number. Thus the 222K is clearly made in Scotland.

The serial number is more confusing.

I have in front of me as I write a Singer explanation of serial numbers. For
American machines it gives two examples.
The first is S8247053. The explanation tells us that:

the S was the particular assembly line on which the machine was put together

the 8 indicates 1981

the 247 indicates the day of the year (Sept 4)

the 053 indicates that it was the 53rd machine built that day.

The second example is A1061C027

the A indicates Anderson, South Carolina

the 1 indicates 1981

the 061 indicates the day of the year (march 2)

the C indicates the assembly line

the 027 indicates the 27th machine that day.

There are other examples for the plants in Scotland and in Germany.

It's probably the above system that the 0800 number uses to so-accurately date
machines and why they are sometimes multiples of ten years wrong as the 1 in the
second example could be 1951, 61, 71, 81 or 91. Presumably models seldom lasted
more than a decade in unchanged form so this wouldn't be too much of a problem.

Confused? So am I.
Date: Wed, 28 Feb 1996 20:36:20 -0500
Subject: Singer serial numbers

Graham: After looking at the serial numbers of over 300 Featherweights that
are on the database, I can guarantee you that there are no encrypted build dates in the
serial numbers. The American serial numbers start at AD545389 (1933)and
methodically increase to AM696632 (1957). A good example to disprove your
explanation would be AK996181 and AL000663 (both of which I own, by the way,
and I can tell you they are identical, not built years apart). These two
machines both have build dates of 8/11/52 (along with 10 other machines on
the survey). You can see that Singer obviously used a standard progression in
assigning numbers. Maybe the explanation you were given by Singer predates
1933 or is for machines made later than the 1960's. Since your example is for
1981, I will guess the latter. Also, I haven't heard of Singer giving out
what appear to be bad build dates on their machines. They do frequently,
however, insist that certain machines are different model numbers than what
they obviously are. The data we get from Singer in New Jersey is more
frequently incorrect for the British machines than with the American. And
there are many serial numbers, mostly the more recent FW's, that Singer is
unable to give any estimate of build date on.
Date: 06 Mar 96 08:59:40 EST
From: Graham Forsdyke (
Subject: Contribution/To all
I"m just a little bit excited about this. Have just found burried deep in my
archive the definitite answer to thos white/mint-green FWs.
The source is a book published by Singer in 1980 for its reps and dealers and is
a photographic record "to provide an easy means of identification of sewing
machines sold in the UK from 1870 to 1862"

Each model is photographed and with a caption giving dates of manufacture and
other details.

From it we learn;
221K Black or PALE TOURQUOISE. Black machines produced in Britain from 1949
to 1955 when entire 221K production went over to the pale tourquoise. This ended in
1964, 222K Black only. Made from 1955 to 64.

So there we have it. No white or mint green. Obviously in '55 the Black 221K was
discontinued and the plant used for 222Ks with only Pale T 221Ks surviving the
model change.
From other information in the book I should be able to pin down the date of all K machines
if Singer USA do not have the UK information.
Date: 07 Mar 96 19:10:03 EST
From: Graham Forsdyke (
Subject: Contribution
re DOB of 221K
" I have a pale turquoise FW (to me, it will always be mint
green) with a SN of F (then a verrry faint "A") 131629. Would
appreciate you letting me know its DOB. Singer was no help at
all. "
Just how faint is that letter A in the SN, Nancy? According to the records I'm
using which were rescued from Kilbowie when the factory closed, the Singer Co
went from EZ to FB without using FA at all. EZ was used from May '68 to April
'70 and FB from April '69 to June '71.
As far as I can tell the SNs on British machines did not allow a to-the-day DOB
until the 500 series started in 1973.
From what I read on Fanatics the Singer Co in the USA is dating many machines to
the day (allbeit with a few errors). I have written to them from ISMACS
requesting this dating information and, if it comes (they're a funny lot at
Singer nowadays) it will be interesting to see if there is any info on the K

The Kilbowie two-letter SN system was started in October 1935 with EA 1. When
they reached EA 999,999 they went onto EB 1.
I,O,U and W were not used with the E prefix. and from '74 the new SN system was
 introduced which was , in effect, a product coding rather than just a number.
Previous to '35 they used a single letter but not in alphabetical order -- or
anything like it.
Sorry I could not be of more help
Date: 27 Mar 96 14:29:03 EST
From: Graham Forsdyke (
Subject: Contribution

To Suzy/Becky re Singer dates.
Like Suzy I am rather suspicious about the Singer 800 number dates and also
about the 25,000 daily production -- that's over 7 million a year.

I have a lot of Singer records from the Scotish factory and much of it is

According to Singer UK it is not possible to date machines to the day until after 1970
when a code was used within the serial number.

It could well be that batches of numbers were allocated to various factories on
a given day (and this is the birthday we get) and used until exhausted when a
new batch would be allocated.

I have asked Singer USA to explain its system of dating machines but so far it has failed
to respond to my letters.

The situation with Becky's two machines is even odder. Singer tell her that her
66 was made in 1926 when my information says that the model was discontinued in

As for her second machine, the No 2, the situation gets into farce. The Singer No 2 was
a giant industrial machine with a one-and-a-half-inch-wide flat belt, a machine that no lady
and very few men could lift off the ground with ease.

Both the records held by the Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC and my own believe
 that 1873 is the date for the machine from the SN you give. I'm
going to guess that the base of the machine is shaped like the back of a fiddle
and, if so, it's a Singer New Family, not a No 2.
Date: Wed, 3 Apr 1996 13:24:37 -0500
Subject: Identification/dating of machines

Here's the latest from Singer Consumer Affairs on 3 of my machines - any and
all comments are welcome, as I am totally confused at this point !
SN#01401132-treadle in stand w/ iron base (Singer in iron on cross-piece),
straight-edged base, Egytian decals in gold - winged Sphinx, fans, snake,
Singer says this is a Model 2-Vibrating Shuttle, part of the series
998550-10235499, mfg'd. Mar. 3, 1891
SN#8660107-originally a treadle, but converted by Sewing Machine Exchange
in B'ham, Ala - has Universal motor on it, base is fiddle-shaped and is in a
portable carrying case - machine fits into base of case, the top comprising
the sides and top w/handle. Singer says this is also a Model 2-Vibrating
Shuttle, part of the series 8647000-8746999, mfg'd. Apr.27, 1889
SN#AB113401 - side load bobbin, floral decals, knee lever, in newer model
stand. Singer says this is a 66-6, mfg'd July 8, 1926 -one of the models made
between 1902-1933, the 66-19, they say, was mfg'd between 1902-1960.

Does this agree with or contradict the information other FWF members have?

Does anyone have any extra parts,accessories for these machines? Any guesses
as to their value? I am wondering if they are worth insuring.


Date: Fri, 12 Apr 1996 21:35:47 -0400

From: Millie MacKenzie (milmac@SNET.Net)

Subject: measurements

I just measured the lengths on 4 popular Singer machines and here they are.
Note, I do not have a case for the 301. Also, bed length on FW and 301 was
taken with the extension in the DOWN position. I hope this helps. Millie

            FW      66      99      301
body            10      15      12      14
bed             15      18      16      16
case            13      20      17      ?

Date: Wed, 15 Jan 1997 10:38:58 -0500 (EST)
From: Kristina Santilla 
Subject: Survey Update

I sent this message Jan. 9, and I truly apologize if this ends up being a
duplicate, but I haven't seen it appear yet after 6 days...

Time for another Featherweight Survey update! If you would like to add
your machine(s) to the database please e-mail me at and I will send you a survey form, or you can fill
one out at

521 people have responded to the survey with information on 982
Featherweights, which is an average of almost 2 per person. The survey
has been ongoing since October 15, 1995, which is an average of more
than 2 surveys submitted per day. This is the breakdown:
426 people have 1 machine.
71 people have 2 machines.
25 people have 3 machines.
14 people have 4 machines.
2 people have 5 machines.
5 people have 6 machines.
4 people have 7 machines.
4 people have 8 machines.
1 person has 9 machines.
1 person has 10 machines.
1 person has 13 machines.
1 person has 14 machines.
1 person has 20 machines.
1 person has 24 machines.
1 person (dealer) has 60 machines.

The following is the number of people who responded by state, and the
number of machines by state: AK-5 persons with 14 machines, AL-10/22,
AR-2/2, AZ-14/19, CA-72/118, CO-5/6, CT-6/6, DE-1/1, FL-19/37, GA-10/12,
IA-12/19, ID-4/4, IL-18/24, IN-13/16, KS-7/7, KY-2/3, LA-4/4, MA-9/11,
MD-13/40, ME-4/5, MI-25/28, MN-7/11, MO-8/9, MS-1/3, MT-2/10, NC-7/11,
NE-6/8, NH-4/6, NJ-18/23, NM-5/15, NV-1/1, NY-22/33, OH-24/32, OK-4/78,
OR-23/27, PA-20/36, SC-2/3, SD-1/1, TN-5/9, TX-24/32, UT-3/4, VA-31/54,
VT-1/1, WA-32/43, WI-11/11, WY-4/6,  Australia-8/9, Alberta, Canada-
3/10, British Columbia, Canada-7/10, Nova Scotia, Canada-2/6, Ontario,
Canada-18/30, New Zealand-3/4, Taiwan-1/1, United Kingdom-1/1. Missing
from the United States are: Hawaii, North Dakota, Rhode Island, and West

The following is the breakdown of machines based on serial# prefix:

Black American: Total=800
AD-45, AE-58, AF-96, AG-66, AH-109, AJ-131, AK-96, AL-122, AM-77. 
These range from 10/3/33 to 9/27/57.

Black British: Total=108
EE-9, EF-15, EG-10, EH-18, EJ-7, EK-4, EL-6, EM-10, EN-3, EP-3, ER-3,
ES-20. These range from 12/24/47 to 8/19/61. This includes 29
freearm model 222's.

Tan: Total=10
ES-5 British all with 8/19/61 "birthdate"
JE-5 Canadian, "birthdate" unknown

White: Total=64
EV-40 EW-2, EY-4, FA-18 beginning with 8/1/63, but the
earliest on the list that Singer agrees is a model 221 is 3/3/64. The
last machine that Singer is able to give a date on is EW070170 with a
"birthdate" of  8/6/68.


The average price paid for a black 221 since 1990 has been $231. 86
were purchased for under $100, and the most expensive was $600.

The average price paid for a 221 with a centennial medallion was $295.

The average price paid for a 222 Freearm since 1990 has been $504. The
lowest price paid was $68 and the highest was $1500.

The average price paid for a white machine was $228, with 8 purchased
for under $100 and the most expensive was $400.

The average price paid for a tan machine was $289.

Below are the known ranges of all the "birthdates". If you know any
serial numbers that can help make this more accurate please let me know.
I am also keeping records of serial numbers for other model numbers.
The ones with * are the first or last in the range according to Singer's
datapages. Since machines didn't leave the plant in the order of their
serial numbers (in fact, not even close!) pinpointing when changes were
made to the FW involves much guesstimating, so don't be too upset if
your machine doesn't agree with the estimates below.

Serial number * Qty on survey * Known serial numbers * Comments

10/3/33  - 8   AD541582 - AD551490 Original price around $84.
9/10/34  - 7   AD722963 - AD730704 One of these has a Chicago
           World's Fair medallion (the fair ended 10/31/34)..
11/27/34 - 9   AD781921 - AD791611
3/18/35  - 5   AD880807 - AD886344
6/24/35  - 11  AD937987 - AD946230
9/23/35  - 10  AD996956*- AD999999* 3044 machines in this allotment.
9/23/35  - 5   AE000001*- AE006956                                    
12/30/35 - 7   AE054399 - AE064320
3/25/36  - 5   AE077668 - AE083652
7/13/36  - 4   AE207784 - AE222356 One of these has a Texas Centennial
           Exposition medallion.
9/10/36  - 2   AE240396 - AE258254 Singer says these are model 15.
11/5/36  - 8   AE296761 - AE307347
3/15/37  - 6   AE410690 - AE418355
6/11/37  - 11  AE538252 - AE555917 Beginning of numbered tension knob.
12/8/37  - 4   AE775090 - AE784170
5/24/38  - 6   AE977277 - AE989049
10/10/38 - 9   AF070706*- AF090705* 20000 this allotment. One of these
           has a Golden Gate Expo medallion.
2/15/39  - 12  AF161806*- AF181805* 20000 this allotment. One of these
           has a satin finish.
7/11/39  - 7   AF244754 - AF259587
12/5/39  - 8   AF372202 - AF391406 One of these has a matte finish.
4/10/40  - 6   AF480501 - AF487401
5/15/40  - 5   AF490039 - AF496659
5/15/40  - 2   AF541842 - AF544631 Singer says these are model 201.
6/19/40  - 2   AF551518 - AF556564 Singer says these are model 66-14.
8/15/40  - 16  AF571881*- AF596880* 25000 in this allotment. Stitch
           length indicator changed to new style during this run.
           These sold new for around $105. Three of these have a
           matte finish.
1/7/41   - 11  AF740751*- AF760750* 20000 in this allotment.
4/1/41   - 9   AF864720 - AF883842
5/14/41  - 4   AF932929 - AF940317 Singer says these are model 15.
7/1/41   - 0   AF998751 - AF999999*
7/1/41   - 8   AG000001*- AG015496

The U.S. was involved in WWII 12/7/41 to 9/2/45 Singer did produce some home,
but mostly industrial models during this period. Involvement with a federal
munitions contract kept machine production minimized. Singer dealers
couldn't get FW's, so had waiting lists.

9/19/45  - 10  AG527051 - AG538056 To illustrate how long it took to get
     a FW after the war, one FW ordered 12/46 received one  
           from this allotment 8/47.
2/18/46  - 8   AG607254 - AG621352
6/4/46   - 3   AG689391*- AG709390* 20000 this allotment.
9/16/46  - 8   AG804867 - AG821221
11/22/46 - 17  AG869669 - AG888171
2/19/47  - 8   AG971467 - AG988311
4/22/47  - 11  AH050371*- AH070370* 20000 this allotment.
6/26/47  - 7   AH111971*- AH131970* 20000 this allotment.
8/19/47  - 20  AH193771*- AH223770* 30000 this allotment. Faceplate
           changed to striated around this time.
10/28/47 - 7   AH318696 - AH345306
1/22/48  - 13  AH417066 - AH443159 One of these sold new for $145.
4/20/48  - 11  AH550998 - AH578163 Motor changed from part #3-110 to
           #3-120 during this range. One of these was purchased new
           for $125.
6/18/48  - 18  AH641832 - AH670007
10/1/48  - 11  AH800504 - AH827702
12/9/48  - 10  AH973921 - AH999999* 26079 this allotment. One of these
           was purchased new for $148.
12/9/48  - 2   AJ000001*- AJ013920* 13920 this allotment.
3/15/49  - 17  AJ103721*- AJ143720* 40000 this allotment. One of these
           was purchased new for $145.
11/18/49 - 17  AJ189901 - AJ222043
1/23/50  - 13  AJ350326 - AJ387117 One has Anniversary medallion.
3/31/50  - 18  AJ558317 - AJ598653 One of these was purchased new for
           $140. Case changed from lift out style to shelf on left
           around this run. Four have Anniversary medallion.
6/1/50   - 22  AJ619230 - AJ651478 Six have Anniversary medallion.
8/22/50  - 23  AJ784363 - AJ819043 One of these was purchased new for
           $125. 15 have Anniversary medallion.
10/26/50 - 19  AJ890180 - AJ935335 15 have Anniversary medallion.
1/29/51  - 18  AK071321*- AK121320* 50000 this allotment. 15 Anniv.
           One of these was originally sold in Brazil. One was
           purchased new for $150.
5/10/51  - 19  AK390162 - AK433825 16 Anniversary.
10/31/51 - 26  AK576793 - AK626506 21 Anniversary.
2/20/52  - 22  AK747259 - AK794948 5 Anniversary.
           medallion, the rest have the black band medallion.
8/11/52  - 10  AK984876*- AK999999* 15124 this allotment. One of these
           was purchased new for $154.
8/11/52  - 15  AL000001*- AL034875* 34875 this allotment. Around this
           run seam allowance gauge was added.
12/12/52 - 24  AL158501*- AL208500* 50000 this allotment.
5/4/53   - 21  AL389869 - AL437088  Riveted model number (221-)began to
           be added below medallion.
10/14/53 - 21  AL525925 - AL574437 Gold leaf changed from ornate to
           plainer style during this run.
4/22/54  - 15  AL690074 - AL737129
1/17/55  - 26  AL900891*- AL950890* 50000 this allotment. One of these
           was purchased new for $169.
6/10/55  - 21  AM137761*- AM187760* 50000 this allotment.
2/27/56  - 21  AM363264 - AM407667
1/29/57  - 29  AM654512 - AM701824
9/27/57  - 4   AM778657 - AM802495

12/24/47 - 1   EE355176   This was purchased new for $140. Singer says
           this is a model 15K.
9/16/48  - 6   EE804417 - EE811303
12/10/48 - 2   EE854764 - EE855230
5/25/49  - 4   EF154453 - EF164154
8/17/49  - 6   EF280789 - EF284937
11/7/49  - 3   EF560957 - EF568289 One has Anniversary medallion.
4/24/50  - 1   EF710384   Has Anniversary medallion.
7/19/50  - 1   EF910065
12/18/50 - 3   EG305050 - EG311235 Two have Anniversary medallion.
2/15/51  - 3   EG345697 - EG349933
7/17/51  - 2   EG705892 - EG709994 Medallion changed to black band style
           during this run.
10/17/51 - 2   EG957781*- EG967780* 10000 this allotment.
12/18/51 - 3   EH001027*- EH011026* 10000 this allotment.
2/29/52  - 2   EH134457 - EH137508
7/22/52  - 3   EH371407 - EH372357
10/8/52  - 4   EH628966 - EH633412
3/4/53   - 6   EH892062 - EH899410 Gold leaf changed from ornate to
           plainer style during this run.
9/4/53   - 1   EJ215767   Riveted model number began to be added below
11/18/53 - 1   EJ268111   Freearm. Seam allowance gauge added.
3/31/54  - 2   EJ622009 - EJ626073 Freearm.
10/18/54 - 3   EJ910263 - EJ917545 Freearm. One of these was purchased
           new for $200.
2/14/55  - 0   EK203130*- EK213138* 10000 this allotment.
3/14/55  - 2   EK319939*- EK329938* 10000 this allotment. Freearm. Seam
           allowance gauge added.
8/16/55  - 1   EK636711   Freearm.
12/20/55 - 1   EK989974
3/2/56   - 6   EL177459 - EL182834 Freearm.
9/17/56  - 1   EL681869   Freearm
2/26/57  - 2   EM236028 - EM238545 Freearm.
8/2/57   - 1   EM601123   Freearm.
11/15/57 - 7   EM957428 - EM961079 Freearm.
3/17/58  - 1   EN138845   Freearm.
5/1/58   - 1   EN327004
10/27/58 - 1   EN827450
2/25/59  - 1   EP095977
3/3/59   - 0   EP131001*- EP133500* 2500 this allotment. Freearm.
5/18/59  - 1   EP256021*- EP257520* 1500 this allotment.
9/22/59  - 1   EP541572*- EP544071* 2500 this allotment. Freearm.
           Medallion changed to brass with red "S" around this time.
12/18/59 - 0   EP758473*- EP760972* 2500 this allotment. Freearm.
3/15/60  - 1   ER022034*- ER024533* 2500 this allotment. Freearm.
5/30/60  - 1   ER317143   Freearm.
6/16/60  - 1   ER318063   Freearm. Singer says this is a 185K/99K/192K.
10/19/60 - 1   ES165344*- ES167843* 2500 this allotment. Freearm.
11/3/60  - 3   ES170544*- ES175543* 5000 this allotment.
1/10/61  - 5   ES239244*- ES249243* 10000 this allotment. Freearm.
1/31/61  - 0   ES352344*- ES357343* 10000 this allotment. Freearm.
3/30/61  - 0   ES522944*- ES527943* 5000 this allotment. Freearm.
5/2/61   - 1   ES627518   Singer says this is a 328K.
5/15/61  - 4   ES648144*- ES658143* 10000 this allotment.
8/19/61  - 6   ES873744*- ES883743* 10000 this allotment. 5 tan, one
           black. 3 tan are 221-J, 2 tan are 221-K.
11/2/61  - 0   ET061345*- ET071344* 10000 this allotment.
8/1/63   - 1   EV319021   White. Singer says this is a 15K.
3/3/64   - 3   EV776991*- EV826990* White. 50000 this allotment.
4/13/64  - 2   EV892928 - EV895069 White. Singer says these are a 133K
           and a 195K.
4/21/64  - 3   EV906211 - EV907883 White. Singer says these are 331K's.
5/5/64   - 3   EV909763 - EV913058 White. Singer says these are 185K's.
5/7/64   - 2   EV916502 - EV918383 White. Singer says these are 246K's.
5/13/64  - 13  EV919198*- EV969197* White. 50000 this allotment. Singer
           says these are 328K's.
6/11/64  - 9   EV972815 - EV988985 White. Singer says these are 285K's.
6/22/64  - 1   EV990482 - EV994718 White. Singer says this is a 196K.
7/3/64   - 1   EV999684   White. Singer says this is a 300K.
8/6/68   - 2   EW063588 - EW070170 White.
unknown  - 4   EY844634 - EY992524 White.
unknown  - 18  FA103014 - FA235830 White.

unknown  - 5   JE152250 - JE160854 Tan.

There are 68 American and 61 British "birthdates" above. Assuming each
one averages 20,000 there were over 2,500,000 Featherweights made.
Adding just these above ranges up "proves" that there were 1,947,069

* Accessories:  19% of the respondents have the oil can, 61% have most
 or all feet and 56% have the manual. 16% have none of the above.
* There are 50 different manual revisions reported.
* There are 109 machines on the database with the anniversary medallion.
 That's more than 10%. Only 6 of these are British.

Hope this settles everyone's survey cravings for a while.
After much procrastination, I've decided to get a homepage so I can keep
this table above updated and available, along with parts lists and some
other information. I'll let you all know when it is finally up and running.

Happy Featherweighting,
Krisi Santilla in Gaithersburg, Md.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Singer Featherweight 221 Information

Have a little facebook group for Featherweights atGaileee's Singer Featherweight 221 Sewing Machine group on facebook. (Or click )

Been getting quite a few new people on the group. Just click on over and request to join! Here's a nice link for y'all to save and use! How to oil your sewing machine - and the Featherweight is shown in the example. Nice!


What Every New Singer Featherweight 221/222 Owner Should Know

Important Featherweight TENSION - Instructions

Monday, September 9, 2013

Singer 301 machines

Recently a comment was posted about, "well what about the 301 Singer Sewing Machines?"
Here is a recent myth busted by Rob Stevens, over on my facebook page, about the Singer 301 machine.

 301 Myth busted!
The factory burned down, and when they started production again, the A was added. The original 301 was built in NJ, the 301A in Anderson, NC.

September 7 at 11:20am · Edited · Like · 2
Rob Andre' Stevens Sorry Sir, that info above is wrong..
That 'fire' myth has been perpetuated for years. Time to set the record straight, here's the 'Real Story' of the added letter 'A'. Sorry for the length, but to tell a truth, the 'facts' are needed.

As most know, Singer had one United States manufacturing factory, 'Elizabethport', located in Elizabeth, New Jersey. All sewing machines manufactured there never had a prefix after the model number. Singer had several manufacturing factories overseas, and up to the year 1900, also used no prefix. After the year 1900 all models manufactured overseas then included a prefix after the model number to denote the place of its manufacture. Examples would be our beloved 221K and 222K, manufactured in Kilbowie, Scotland.

In 1950 Singer opened the Anderson, South Carolina plant to start manufacture of the all new slant model sewing machines, i.e. the 301 etc, but all the parts tooling was at Elizabethport, NJ, and the 'only' 301's ever made there, was a pilot run of 30 machines, just for testing and inspection, as it was an entirely new sewing machine, and later those 30 were then intentionally destroyed. When the Anderson factory started manufacturing the Singer 301, it did so using the 'NA' serial numbers allotted by NJ in May of 1951. In June 1951, Singer planned to release a "Limited Edition" of Singer 301's during the Centennial Year, and so the Elizabethport factory started producing the 301 parts, shipping them to the Anderson, SC factory for final assembly.

In July 1951, the original Company register number log book for the Anderson factory shows that 10,000 serial numbers, i.e. NA000001 - NA010000, were allotted to be manufactured. They were the 'only' allotted Singer 301 serial numbers during the Centennial Year 1951, and only some were badged with 1851 - 1951 Centennial emblems, the rest had the newer black bordered badges. From July - Sept was when the "Limited Edition" of the "Singer 301" were being manufactured at the Anderson factory. Then from 16-30 Sept 1951, the 100th Anniversary of the patenting of the first Singer sewing machine was observed by Singer Manufacturing Company in New York with 9,400 Singer employees. The New Singer Model 301 was displayed at the exhibition of new and old Singer sewing machines, and prior to the general public knowing its existence. During that 2 week event, the new Singer 301 was awarded to many Singer employees. From Oct to Dec '51, the remaining 301's were then shipped to selected Service Center/Stores for sale, even though no advertizement or advance notice had yet been created. In Jan 1952, manufacturing began for the Singer Model 301, serial numbers NA010001-NA186000, allotted to be solely manufactured at the Anderson, SC factory throughout 1952, and in Oct of that year, the Grand Introduction of the 301 was introduced to the public, with all its fanfare and ads.

As aforementioned, to avoid creating confusion as to where the 301 was actually being manufactured, Singer had decided, i.e. starting with serial numbers NA186001, to add the prefix "A" to denote it was manufactured at the 'Anderson', South Carolina plant, and so in Jan 1953, the 301 Model Tag became no more, and all slant models thereafter bore an "A", hence the Singer 301A, and later the 401A, 403A, 500A and the final 503A.

Now for you 'Collectors' on here, the issuance of a very 'Limited Edition' of a machine is/was a very rare occurrence in the Singer Manufacturing Company's history, as they had never released any Singer Model sewer one year prior to it's introduction date, so it makes those first 10,000 Singer 301's rare birds indeed.

One last notable item, on all 'Black' machines, there were two different gold decals used: The very early Singer 301 sewing machines had what they called a "Paperclips" gold decal with the center decal that looks like an "S". Singer 301's after serial # NA130000, and all black 301A's had what they called a "Prism" gold decal with the center decal that looks like an "8".

So there you have it, and I'll always give credit where credit is due, as a lot of this info came from '' ..And so M'Ladys and Gents, adieu.. and to all have a great new week.

Facebook group located at:  Ask to join!

Here is what I could find:
  1. On Pattern Review - several reviews of the Singer 301 machine. 
  3. 301 Vintage Sewing Machine Review
  4. April 1930's 301 Machines
  5. Glenn's Joy of 301 Singer Sewing Machines
  7. Grandmother's Sewing Machines 301
  8. Sleepy Cat's Newest Sewing Machine - the 301!
  9. A manual for the 301
  10. ISMACS info on the 301
  11. Collecting 301's
  12. Flicker of 301s
  13. Best Sewing Machine Review of the 301
  14. An Ebay Guide and Review of the 301 Singer Sewing Machine
  15. The Black 301 Singer Sewing Machine
  16. Treadle Quilt's 301 in a different cabinet!
  17. Newest edition from what the craft - the 301! 
  18. Susan's Cloches tension and 301 Singer Sewing Machine Thoughts.
  21. Tomrit 301 Singer!
  22. A wordpress blog on the 301 Singer
  23. Leah's Garden 301
  24. Penny Quilt Journal on the wonderful 301 machine.
  25. Martha Sews - back story with the 301 machine
  26. Sew Mama Sew 301 stuff!
  27. and soon some 301 Singer information from my family!  Woo!
  28. So enjoy these links!  Any more?  Please let me know!
    Table dates provided by Rob Stevens from the facebook group, Gaileee's Singer
    Featherweights 221 and 222s.