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Where could I ask for info on a misbehaving sewing machine? The sewing newsgroups are near dead and lacking this sort of info, and it's not an electronic problem

cheers
NT

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Mon, 17 Jul 2017 16:52:34 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

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The various sewing machine manuals often have timing adjustment
instructions which include troubleshooting.  A maker and model number
would be helpful:

Sewing machine repair:
<http://www.sewusa.com/Sewing_Machine_Repair.htm

Sears:
<http://www.searspartsdirect.com/sewing-machine-repair.html

Brother:
<http://www.brothersewing.co.uk/en_GB/fixing-common-sewing-machine-problems

Various video:
<


https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=sewing+machine+repair


If you're fixing an industrial sewing machine, the procedures and
tolerances are quite different.  Whatever you do, get the manual on
the machine, even if you have to beat up on the manufactory.  I ended
up with a Brother machine which was not on their support web pile.  An
email got me a scanned manual.
<http://support.brother.com/g/b/productseries.aspx?c=us&lang=en&content=ml&pcatid36%

Drivel:  I fished this machine out of a dumpster:
<
http://802.11junk.com/jeffl/crud/Kenmore-sewing-machine.jpg

This one came from a flea market for about $15:
<http://802.11junk.com/jeffl/PCB-Layout/slides/White-1510-sewing-machine.html
Both are my "practice" machines.

So, what are you working on and what is it doing wrong?

--  
Jeff Liebermann     snipped-for-privacy@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
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Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Tuesday, 18 July 2017 05:20:03 UTC+1, Jeff Liebermann  wrote:
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ms>
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https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=sewing+machine+repair

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nt=ml&pcatid36%>
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html>
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I've got manuals for both, but they don't touch repairs at all. They're bot
h domestic machines.

Bernina 121, 1944-54 and overly basic. Top tensioner refused to grip the th
read at all. I got it to do so by removing a washer as a temporary measure  
- that's not how it should be, but there we go. Now when the thread lifting
 arm goes up it doesn't quite pull the thread up far enough to get it fully
 out of the bobbin area, and snarlup quickly follows. It's not a valuable m
achine, I won't be getting parts for it but it ought to be something fairly
 straightforward. I've set the bobbin & top tensions. I suspect the top ten
sion release mechanism is stuck. I'll take another look but didn't say any  
ready access to that area of internals.

Bernina 530-2 circa 1960. A nice high quality machine with a range of decor
ative stitches & lots of accessories. 2 problems. Applying power & operatin
g the control results in current flow but no movement. The machine turns bu
t is rather stiff - I suspect the motor's just stalled. I'll oil the whole  
thing & see if that sorts it. The other problem is the decorative stitch se
lector won't move at all. Another lever also wouldn't move but a bit of per
sistence & persuasion got it to. I suspect all round oiling may be the solu
tion, will know later.

I've gotten tired of googling only to find idiot advice like 'have you put  
the thread in the right end,' 'don't forget to set the bobbin tension' and  
'ooh you need to take it to a dealer' type stuff.


NT

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com says...
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got it to. I suspect all round oiling may be the solution, will know later.
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I inherited my mother's old machine that had not been used for years.  
The zig-zag adjustment had stuck and I could not get at the bearing to  
free it up. Success with sticking the whole machine in front of a  
domestic fan heater until it was nicely warmed up!

Mike.

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Tuesday, 18 July 2017 10:27:25 UTC+1, Mike Coon  wrote:
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ecorative stitches & lots of accessories. 2 problems. Applying power & oper
ating the control results in current flow but no movement. The machine turn
s but is rather stiff - I suspect the motor's just stalled. I'll oil the wh
ole thing & see if that sorts it. The other problem is the decorative stitc
h selector won't move at all. Another lever also wouldn't move but a bit of
 persistence & persuasion  
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r.
put the thread in the right end,' 'don't forget to set the bobbin tension'  
and 'ooh you need to take it to a dealer' type stuff.
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I like that. Once I've got them oiled I can try the oven at 40C - I think i
t goes that low. Cheers. I do now suspect both of them are suffering the sa
me seizure problem, just of different bits of the mechanism. I know almost  
nothing of their history post-purchase, but the 530-2 with the stuck select
or does have a repair tag from 1977 saying stuck stitch selector.


NT

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Tue, 18 Jul 2017 01:01:37 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

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The Bernina 121 similar to the 125, which adds zig-zag but is the same
as far as thread tensioning.  It was also sold as a Husqvarna Zig-Zag.
This should be useful:
<https://www.occaphot-ch.com/bernina-oldie-modelle/bernina-modelle-kl-125-121-1950er/

I don't know exactly what's wrong, but you have the right idea.  Take
it apart, clean everything, reassemble, lubricate, and adjust the
tension.  I don't see how you can successfully adjust the top thread
tension, and then claim that it doesn't grip the thread at all.  If
you've removed washers, you probably took it apart and cleaned it, so
I'll assume the center shaft was clean.  I normally do not oil the
tension disks, so if they've been oiled, that might be the problem.

If the machine has been infrequently used, is dirty or dusty, or was
lubricated with 3-in-1 oil, you might consider cleaning with solvent
and some new oil.

Incidentally, that may not be a "valuable" machine, but it might be
quite useful.  Such all-metal machines are prized for sewing leather
and heavy canvas.

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The stuck stitch selector knob is an important clue that the machine
needs cleaning and lubrication.  Take the belt off and try to turn it
by hand, but don't force it.  If it's stiff, then you get to clean out
the gum with some solvent and lubricate from scratch.  If it moves
freely, look at the motor.  If you see blobs of oily lint, sticky goo,
or rust on the shafts around the moving parts, there's the problem.  

Too much oil is just as bad as not enough.  Same with using the wrong
type of oil.  You want oil that doesn't evaporate and maintains a
fairly constant viscosity over temperature.
<http://www.makeit-loveit.com/2012/09/how-to-cleanoil-your-sewing-machine.html
I would go easy on "oil the whole thing" and try to isolate the cause
of the drag.  Adding more oil to a dirty or dusty machine just creates
more sticky goo.  

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If you specific advice for your specific problem, it's really helpful
if you would supply specifics.  A photo of the guts is very useful as
many problems can be visually seen.  Some history of the machine is
always helpful.  

I'll spare you the rest of the lecture.  
I'm out of time.  Good luck.

--  
Jeff Liebermann     snipped-for-privacy@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
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Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On 2017/07/18 9:35 AM, Jeff Liebermann wrote:
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Hi Jeff,

Hate to ask (I can see an oil thread looming (sorry)) but what do you  
recommend for oil? I figure a non-detergent 20w oil is good for most  
small mechanical machines lube points, and have tried synthetic oils on  
tiny motors (CD spin motors) with good success. I have to assume there  
is no ideal oil though.

Have you a preferred link for an online page that gives a good  
description of oils and what jobs they are best for?

WD-40 is, of course, of little use when something is seized and there  
are far better and cheaper solutions than WD for that problem. The best  
appearing to be old style ATF fluid and acetone.

http://www.instructables.com/id/Home-made-penetrating-oil/

http://www.greentractortalk.com/forums/off-topic/5498-using-50-50-mixture-atf-acetone-stuck-engines-has-worked-some.html


Thanks,
John :-#)#

--  
(Please post followups or tech inquiries to the USENET newsgroup)
                      John's Jukes Ltd.
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Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
GRUMP!!!!

OK, this is 2017. What this means is that there are lubricants and solvents
 out there that are beyond the wildest dreams of those machine designers.
  

First, invest in some KROIL - this to saturate everything in preparation fo
r a massive cleaning. Kroil will loosen skunge and penetrate bearings so th
at you do not gall anything by moving it by force. Kroil is meant as a pene
trating oil, NOT as a lubricant, restorative nor anything else than what it
 is designed to do.  

Then, when clean and re-assembled:  

http://cdn3.bigcommerce.com/s-evpnwp29/products/95/images/329/SuperLube_Oil
__21128.1439340805.500.500.jpg?c=2    

Where oil is required. Cams & cam-followers and such.  

http://www.backflowpreventer.com/media/ecom/prodlg/SuperLube.jpg

Where grease is required - gears, open shaft bearings (on the shaft and in  
the bearing prior to reassembly) and such.

Ancient oil & grease formula polymerized with heat and pressure. Modern syn
thetics will not. That puts you way ahead of the game moving forward. And t
he specific materials cited have a very high film strength and do not attra
ct dust as much as non-synthetics.  

Sewing needles have a 'sense', Typically the haft is D shaped. Make sure th
at the flat side is in the correct orientation, or you will break/bend it e
very time.  

Remember, you are undoing years and years of neglect. If you work on the th
eory that I use - every machine needs a certain amount of maintenance over  
its life. And the real time required increases in geometric but inversely r
elated to the timeliness of that maintenance. So, you have a number of hour
s ahead of you before everything will be 'right'.

I expect that the persnickety level of maintenance required is why new mach
ines get sold despite the vast number of vintage ones out there.  

Peter Wieck
Melrose Park, PA

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Tuesday, 18 July 2017 18:53:34 UTC+1, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com  wrote:
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ts out there that are beyond the wildest dreams of those machine designers.
  
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for a massive cleaning. Kroil will loosen skunge and penetrate bearings so  
that you do not gall anything by moving it by force. Kroil is meant as a pe
netrating oil, NOT as a lubricant, restorative nor anything else than what  
it is designed to do.  
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il__21128.1439340805.500.500.jpg?c=2    
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n the bearing prior to reassembly) and such.
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ynthetics will not. That puts you way ahead of the game moving forward. And
 the specific materials cited have a very high film strength and do not att
ract dust as much as non-synthetics.  
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that the flat side is in the correct orientation, or you will break/bend it
 every time.  
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theory that I use - every machine needs a certain amount of maintenance ove
r its life. And the real time required increases in geometric but inversely
 related to the timeliness of that maintenance. So, you have a number of ho
urs ahead of you before everything will be 'right'.
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chines get sold despite the vast number of vintage ones out there.  
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I see you like to spend :) I use baby oil on sewing machines, it's a light  
petroleum derived clear oil with a trace of perfume. Whether babies were ha
rmed in it's making remains to be seen.

These machines don't have any felt pads, oil just hangs around in the movin
g parts by surface tension. They're certainly not high speed mechanisms, th
ey're overengineered to be just about bombproof.

The 530-2 runs stiffly but it runs & sews now. But frequently the mechanism
 stiffens a good bit & motor speed drops right down. Hopefully paraffin wil
l help.  There are also still key parts that remain stuck. 15 minutes in th
e oven at 50C freed up 3 controls, but 2 remain well stuck so far. Paraffin
 is next.


NT

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
wrote:

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Not high enough.  

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First, a little background and drivel.  My father owned a women's wear
(mostly lingerie) factory in Smog Angeles.  I got plenty of experience
building, fixing, and adjusting industrial sewing machines and making
attachments.  Then, I discovered electronics and largely abandoned
sewing machinery.  Lately, I've become rather bored with electronics,
computing, and some of my other activities, and though it might be
interesting to do sewing machine repairs on the side.  Big mistake,
but I won't bore you with the problems I created.  Meanwhile, I've
collected a small collection of older machines, most of which are
being slowly repaired and sold.  Not the best credentials but perhaps
good enough for the basics.

Oil for sewing machines, microscopes, guns, and clocks all have two
requirements that must be met.  The oil should not evaporate and
should remain at a constant viscosity over the working temperature
range.  That's because these devices rely on residual friction of the
lubricant to control the movement of mating parts.  Changes in this
friction will result in undesirable changes in timing and adjustment.

Big industrial sewing machines solve the gum and evaporation problems
by using an oil sump and splash lubrication.  It won't turn to gum
because additional oil just washes away the gum.  It can evaporate,
but with so much oil in the sump, it's unlikely to ever be run without
oil.  Too bad it makes such a big mess.  I've also never seen an oil
sump on a home type sewing machine.

Another way is to do it like an automobile engine, and pump oil down
an oil gallery into mating surfaces via holes in the bushings.  That
works, but is too complicated, expensive, and messy for a home
machine.

So, what's left?  Felt oil pads is what most home machine use.  That
works, but requires much better oil than the previous 2 methods of
lubrication.  That is why you don't use engine oil, WD40, penetrating
oil, or home brew in a sewing machine.  None of these oils are
constant viscosity or even close to the viscosity specified by the
sewing machine design.  Even clock oil is marginal, because clocks are
not designed to handle the rotational speeds and reciprocating
pounding found in sewing machines.

So, what works?  Ummm... sewing machine oil perhaps?  They're largely
all the same stuff different in viscosity for different manufacturers.
<https://www.mobil.com/en/industrial/lubricants/product-series/mobil-velocite-sm-series
Ok, so you're not going to buy it by the gallon, but the specs are the
same as what you get with retail overpriced sewing machine oil.

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No, but I'll see if I can find something.  I doubt if anyone can get
all the various types of lubricants on a single web page.  In general,
the lube selection pages of the major oil companies do better than the
specialty oil formulation pages.  For example start here:
<https://www.mobil.com/en/industrial
I'll see if I can find some more links later.

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We had this discussion in some newsgroup recently.  The consensus
among those that tried acetone and ATF as a penetrating oil varied
radically from it works great, to it sucks.  Several people discovered
that there are different types of ATF, one of which wouldn't even mix
properly with acetone.  I'll see if I can find the thread.

Please note that penetrating oil is not a lubricant.

--  
Jeff Liebermann     snipped-for-privacy@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
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Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Tuesday, 18 July 2017 17:35:26 UTC+1, Jeff Liebermann  wrote:
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The 125 is worth something, the 121 I doubt it. I don't plan to keep it, I'
ve got far more capable machines. If I can get it going without hassle it'l
l bring in double what I paid for the pair & be useful to someone. It's the
 530-2 I'm willing to spend more time on.

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-121-1950er/>

interesting, but that's all

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the lack of thread tension puzzled me. It works just fine with one washer r
emoved, so it's a low priority issue.

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Yes... question is which solvent. White spirit? Paraffin/kerosene? I've got
 those. Also have ammonia & bleach if they'd attack the crud without causin
g damage.

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Ten a penny I think.

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.html>
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I've not psoted pics because I don't believe they'd be in any way helpful.  
The mechanism is quite dense. Looking at the thing IRL it's hard enough to  
see what's going on with moving one's vision at all sorts of angles, I can'
t see a photo being comprehensible. I'll see what I can get tomorrow but I  
doubt it'll give much away.

History is unknown, I got them at a clearance for peanuts. The lubrication  
disaster tells me they've either not been used in a long time, or had no ca
re taken of them at all.


NT

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Tue, 18 Jul 2017 14:48:05 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

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You're hard to please.

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It may have been disassembled and then put back together incorrectly.  
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Oh, that's easy.  Anything that will dissolve the original sewing
machine oil.  Even if it's dried out or turned to goo, it's still the
same oil, which can be dissolved by anything from paint thinner to
kerosene.  I wouldn't go any higher up the chlorinated hydrocarbon
tree because those tend to dull or eat plastic parts.  I tend to favor
kerosene (lamp oil) for loosening up machine parts.  If I'm lazy, I
just dump some more sewing machine oil on the part, which will
dissolve the gum, but not the stuff that has hardened.  As little
scraping with a piece of wood or plastic (not metal) will expedite
things.

What's the story behind using ammonia and bleach?  I've never heard of
that concoction.

The reason I want a photo is because I've seen a few Frankenstein
monsters assembled from parts from different machines.  I've also
spent an inordinate amount of time digging out information on what
turned out to be the wrong model number.  Trust, but verify.

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Thanks for the details.  Some of mine were left outside in the rain.
Rust everywhere.  I think you have the right approach.  Clean, lube,
adjust, and try again.



--  
Jeff Liebermann     snipped-for-privacy@cruzio.com
150 Felker St #D    http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
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Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Wednesday, 19 July 2017 07:21:53 UTC+1, Jeff Liebermann  wrote:
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:) If there's anything online about actual repairs to Berninas I've not found it.

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Probably so. I'll recheck the central split threaded rod for blockage. I reckon I know how to sort it now.

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Kerosene it is. Scraping is mostly not viable, taking the whole mechanism apart is not on the to do list, only 2 bits have scrape access.


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Either can tackle congealed oil. Ammonia is the more effective & antisocial. Don't mix them.

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Yup. Will get some pics. Cheers.


NT

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where

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Ammonia is alkaline enough to saponify oils, at least to some extent.
I doubt it would dissolve the gum as well as a light petroleum solvent
would, but one might use it as a final cleaner to remove all traces of
the old (dissolved) lubricant before re-lubricating.

I don't think that chlorine bleach (sodium hypochlorite) would be a
good choice.  It also is alkaline and might saponify the oils but the
free chlorine could attack all sorts of things in the equipment,
including the service technician.

Ammonia and bleach as a "concoction" is one of those things that the
labels on both products warn you quite sternly NOT to do.  When mixed,
these chemicals react to create chloramine gas (a mixture of NH2Cl and
NHCl2), which is a severe respiratory irritant.

http://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJM199909093411115#t=article

Unless you're fond of recreational edema and emergency tracheostomy,
I'd avoid this "concoction" as if it were poison :-)


Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
All of the following done OUTDOORS:

1 cup of lye in 3 gallons of *cold* water will remove any kind of paint, gr
ease, or applied coating from any otherwise inert metal or plastic. Even fr
om the smallest nooks and crannies if left overnight. Do not do this, or ch
oose the option below unless you have a safe method of disposal of the effl
uent. Much vintage paint and coatings, especially bright colors contained l
ead, chromium, cadmium and other pigments that are no fun in any concentrat
ion.  

Glacial Ammonia - available as a diazo-print developer back in the day - wi
ll do the same.  

Kerosene and other light hydrocarbons should also be used outdoors if used  
as solvents. Similarly, gasoline, Naptha, Coleman fuel and others of that n
ature. And certainly not indoors or near sources of ignition - even electri
c fans.  

Acetone should be used in very small quantities as the vapor is heavier tha
n air and quite volatile (explosive). Outdoors if in any sort of quantity.
  

Similarly, methanol (wood alcohol). Very explosive if the vapors are concen
trated.  

I keep a number of 1-ounce glass eyedropper bottles for various solvents an
d such, including my 20:1 naptha-oleic acid mix. And even then, I tend to b
e quite careful with them.  

I am also a great believer in new-technology lubricants. Synthetics, engine
ered long-chain polymers and PTFE additives have made the options very near
ly infinitely better than even 30 years ago. Nor are vast quantities needed
 for most of us. Running four clocks and any number of other clockwork/mech
anical devices (and guns) and I am still on my first pints with most left o
ver. So, at that level, cost is really not a factor.  

Peter Wieck
Melrose Park, PA

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Wednesday, 19 July 2017 21:33:40 UTC+1, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com  wrote:
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grease, or applied coating from any otherwise inert metal or plastic. Even  
from the smallest nooks and crannies if left overnight. Do not do this, or  
choose the option below unless you have a safe method of disposal of the ef
fluent. Much vintage paint and coatings, especially bright colors contained
 lead, chromium, cadmium and other pigments that are no fun in any concentr
ation.  
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will do the same.  
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d as solvents. Similarly, gasoline, Naptha, Coleman fuel and others of that
 nature. And certainly not indoors or near sources of ignition - even elect
ric fans.  
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han air and quite volatile (explosive). Outdoors if in any sort of quantity
.  
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entrated.  
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and such, including my 20:1 naptha-oleic acid mix. And even then, I tend to
 be quite careful with them.  
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neered long-chain polymers and PTFE additives have made the options very ne
arly infinitely better than even 30 years ago. Nor are vast quantities need
ed for most of us. Running four clocks and any number of other clockwork/me
chanical devices (and guns) and I am still on my first pints with most left
 over. So, at that level, cost is really not a factor.  
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Some of those solvents are certainly toxic and explosive, but kerosene? I'm
 perfectly happy to use that indoors.


NT

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Thursday, July 20, 2017 at 9:53:11 AM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

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'm perfectly happy to use that indoors.

Kerosene has two not-so-nice properties that few understand:

a) When exposed in quantity - on a rag, or in a bowl - although it has rela
tively low volatility, it does not have ZERO volatility. And that volatilit
y is highly dependent on temperature. Further, kerosene is not uniformly on
e fraction, but several. What happens is that if any surfaces near to the w
ork area are cooler than the rest of the room, a thin film of the heavier f
ractions will build up.  

b) And, that film will polymerize over time (faster with exposure to UV or  
ozone) into a varnish-like coating that will be very nearly impossible to r
emove without heroic efforts.  

Acetone, Naptha, Methanol and other alcohols and similar volatile solvents  
consist of fractions that do not have a transition temperature anywhere nea
r normal room temperature.  

Better living through chemistry!  

Peter Wieck
Melrose Park, PA  

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Wednesday, 19 July 2017 07:21:53 UTC+1, Jeff Liebermann  wrote:
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125-121-1950er/>
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Right the 121 now works perfectly. I reassembled the upper thread tensioner
 leaving out the tension release disc as I couldn't get it to work with it.
 I can only presume it was wrongly assembled or some part out of spec, and  
likely a bit not present that should be.


That leaves the [far better] 530-2, a 1960s all-mechanical machine with cam
wheel operated stitch patterns. Good progress - it now sews & keeps going a
t a good speed. Some jammed bits are unstuck, but some remain jammed.
https://ibb.co/kw9AS5
https://ibb.co/diHx75
https://ibb.co/gFh8Ek
https://ibb.co/kV6DfQ
https://ibb.co/eqi4n5
https://ibb.co/cvWDfQ
Still jammed are:

- the needle position knob. The mechanism has a sprung detent thing, and it
 is jammed absolutely rock solid. Soaking in oil, baking in oven & plenty o
f force has had no effect.

- the stitch length knob moves but still very stiffly.

- the biggest problem is the stitch pattern selector. Again it's rock solid
 jammed. Photos and video don't show the mechanism at all, it's buried unde
r other bits and one has to bob about to spot bits of it and work out what  
it is. I hope to add paraffin/kerosene tonight and cross fingers.


NT

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Thursday, July 20, 2017 at 3:46:45 PM UTC-4, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Much snippage.


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Do you have access to Kroil? I used it recently (and successfully) to loosen a muffler-bearing (OK, an exhaust manifold bolt) on my wife's very vintage Volvo recently. It might be effective in your situation where the other stuff has no effect.  

  http://www.kanolabs.com/google/?gclid=CjwKCAjwqcHLBRAqEiwA-j4AyMZzSaKDxpEn_pSE2fN7OvcTUxZ_OCv1nMZr-YJ0O0YORY9t1JmSIhoCtIAQAvD_BwE

Peter Wieck
Melrose Park, PA

Re: OT: Sewing machine repair question where
On Thursday, 20 July 2017 21:25:04 UTC+1, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com  wrote:
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No, I checked, I'll try other solvents first, and think again if necessary.


NT

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