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Antique Singer Sewing Machine - Walking Foot

by Elaine
(Corea, Maine)

I have a vintage/antique Singer sewing machine that I have dated from around 1948.


Since I got it in 1969, I have sewed miles on it and would now like to attempt to do some machine quilting. I have scoured the internet trying to find the right walking foot to buy without spending a ton of money.

I've read reports of cheap plastic ones that crack and ones that don't line up with the feed dogs. Has anyone had any experience using a walking foot with this type of machine?

Reply:

I have to admit, I'm no expert when it comes to sewing machine parts, so I did some investigating and found this...

www.sewalot.com/dating_singer_sewing_machine_by_serial_number.htm

...to help confirm the age of your machine.

The following point was particularly interesting. The serial number most likely indicates the year the machine was started. The S/N was stamped onto the casting of the sewing machine early in the production process. However, the machine's completion and delivery to a store for sale could be far out into the future.

If you compare S/N's, I'd be interested to hear where your machine was manufactured...Russia, Scotland, Canada, Japan, Germany, Taiwan or America.

With respect to the walking foot, Singer sewing machines have either a hi-, low- or slant-shank. I do believe if your machine is a slant shank, it will say-so on the machine, otherwise, you can tell by measuring.

Go to your machine and put the presser foot down. Now measure the distance from the bottom of the foot to the screw hole that attaches the foot to the presser bar.

The approximate measurements are:
  • Slant shank - 1-1/8"
  • Lo-shank - 3/4"
  • Hi-shank - 1/1-4"
Identifying the shank helps you choose a walking foot that attaches properly to your machine. And one where the feed dogs line up.

To be on the safe side, make sure you can return the foot if it doesn't fit. Better yet, if you can, take your machine with you where you purchase the foot and bring a small quilt sandwich (6"x6") to quilt on with the foot installed.

For a machine from the 1940's there's a good chance you'll need a generic walking foot for this well-loved, antique Singer sewing machine.

If you think you may use it for free motion quilting, check at the same time to see if you have a cover for your feed dogs. You may need to purchase this also.

Readers, can you add to my suggestions? I'd appreciate it!

Piecefully,

Julie Baird
Editor

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