1920s Singer 29K Leather Sewing Machine

Submitted to Community Café

I restored this Singer 29K sewing machine a few years ago. I bought it from a scrap metal dealer in Cleveland, TN. Someone had sold it to them in a load of scrap. Luckily, one of the ladies in the office spotted it and brought it in the building and cleaned it up a little. When I purchased it, it was pretty rusty and completely locked down.

It took a lot of time and penetrating oil to get it freed up. Once it was turning, I kept soaking it with machine oil, spinning it and wiping it down until the oil that I was wiping off was clean. Then I used a wire brush on a drill for the heavy rust and did a lot of hand sanding on the machine. I started the paint process with Rust-Oleum's Rust Converter, then topped it with Rust-Oleum Gloss Black Enamel. To finish it off I painted the raised letters and logos with antique gold craft paint and added new water slide decals I purchased on eBay. I had planned to clear coat it, but traded it for a vintage mo-ped before I got around to that. The original drawer was missing, but the wooden drawer slides were still intact, so I made a new drawer from some scrap pine and covered it with oak veneer.  The drawer pull is one I salvaged from another old Singer treadle machine that was beyond repair.

I've refinished several vintage treadle sewing machines, but this was my favorite. It worked better than it looked. The man I traded it to uses it to sew patches on leather jackets at motorcycle shows.  It's next to impossible to find anything new that is this well made.  Don't scap it just because it looks rusty!!!