I completely agree with your views, the 1958 electric (not potted motor) 15K I have has almost feminine curves to it whilst the 1950 201K has a very sturdy look about it yet to me still looks great. A mechanic friend of mine tells me there is no real comparison in the engineering with the 201 coming out on top but personally, coming from a tailoring backround although I prefer the 201 because it is smoother and I believe produces a marginally better stitch the 15 is not far behind. Having said all that, one of my favorite machines to sew on is my treadle 66K dating from 1910!
I've got several old singers (12, and 127s) I finally was able to afford a 201 and got a really nice one that has not been used too much. Unfortunately this ebay find had rotten wiring. Finding someone to rewire it is cost prohibitive, and the tutorial is really mindbending. I have a really lovely treadle with a 137 in it. I'm thinking that my cheapest route is to modify the 201 to run it on my treadle. I don't know what to do about the motor gears nor what parts I would need to convert it to the treadle. My 201 was made in 1950 and has the motor on the back of it. Do you have any ideas? I'm at a loss. Thank you for any help.
Sorry to hear your 201 isn't all you hoped it would be. Pretty common for the old wiring to need repair, but it's not an easy job for a lay-person. Re-wiring is probably my dad's least favorite aspect of refurbishing these old machines. However, if you can find someone who can do it at a price you can afford you won't regret it.
Belt-drive 201's can be converted to treadle fairly simply, but the potted motor style 201 is a different animal. I don't have any experience or insight to share on that. You might contact the folks at www.treadleon.net to see if they can help steer you in the right direction. Thanks for visiting!
Thank you very much. $130 is the price of the only person I can find that will rewire it. I thought this would be the ultimate machine. Take care and thanks again.
Hi Curt. I have 2 of the 201-2 models and have re-wired one of them. My first Singer is that 201. Little did I know when I bought it at a garage sale years ago, I was getting a great machine. It has been used a lot and had a bad case of pin rash (scratched paint on the upper arm because some people sew on a fabric pin cushion and the pins scratch the paint off.) It's bed also had a lot of paint scratches but it has always sewn great (through 12 layers of canvas) If you live near Springfield Oregon, I might be able to help you or re-wire your machine for a lot less just because I like these old machines so much. I also have a 1937 201K which is a treadle that I could also, put a belt driven motor on if I wanted to. To turn a 201-2 into a belt-drive, would require you to have a different handwheel and belt fender/bobbin winder to trade it out with besides an electric motor.
I know the thread is old but I am in Curt's boat when it comes to wiring. I am learning but wondered if you'd be up helping me with my rewiring or at least any knowledge transfer would be great. I am also in Oregon, up by Portland but willing to travel. Thanks Deb
Hi Deb, I just saw your reply about a 210 and working on it. You can call me at 541-726-6390 if you want more info.
Oops, make that a Singer 201-2. My fingers must have gotten dyslexic? I could also help with re-wiring any other old Singer as well.
Hi Deb, I hadn't checked back on this blog for a while. Do you still need a singer re-wired? I have rewired two different 201-2's, so I am pretty familiar with that model. I also know what parts it would take to convert a 201-2 into a treadle model. It requires the heavy treadle style hand-wheel and the fender with the bobbin winder on it. The bigger issue is that behind the hand-wheel on a 201-2, the two screws that hold the motor assembly to the machine body, are a different spacing than the two screws that hold the fender and bobbin winder on. Also, the treadle model didn't have the built on light on the front of the machine. They can be converted if you have the right parts.
Any help would be great
hiii i just got a old 201K and it is missing some parts do u know eny website that hase information about it befor i take it apart or eny thing spetial i shall know?
I have a model that seems similar to the one pictured, but it is covered in a rough matte finish. The roughness has rubbed off in some places. Is is normal to find 201s that aren't shiney?
Ivabelle, it sounds like your machine has the finish known as Godzilla. Singer made that finish on some models as an alternative to the far more common shiny black.
Hi Robert. If yiu could call the number above in the earlier comments, and leave a message, I could get in touch with you and answer your questions.
Hi Gary and Barbara
I was recently given a Singer 201-2 that has been well maintained. I had it serviced by a repairman in San Francisco experienced with old Singers. He placed the cord to the foot control which had frayed. I am having a bit of trouble getting the foot pedal to work continuously. This may just be me getting used to it.
When I depress the pedal, it feels as if the motor is slowly trying to engage, then it gets going but then falls back to slow mo even though I do not think that I have reduced my foot pressure. I do not a rug under it yet so the pedal moves gradually away from me. Maybe that is the problem. Any advice?
Hi, I just saw your question. I have rewired a couple of Singer 201-2's (the gear drive models). The wires to the motor were in bad shape. That could possibly be a problem, not delivering full power to the motor. Also, I have tested several foot pedals, plugged them to the same machine, and found that some of them must have had more resistance than others? As one might make the motor spin noticably faster than the next one. I don't know all of the inner workings 100% intricately, but know it works on resistance, that why they tend to get warm when sewing a lot of starts and stops, or slower speed. If you replace the rubber feet to get a good grip on your floor, as opposed to putting them on a rug, or using them on a carpet, you will be safer. I dicovered some older Singer foot feeds, get rather hot during use.
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OldSewinGear is the collaborative effort of retired repairman Gary and daughter Barbara. We love old sewing gear and enjoy sharing what we've learned in our vintage sewing machine adventures. We are located in Roseburg, Oregon.