Friday, October 3, 2014

Broken Berninas

I am a work in progress and I hope to never be "done" or finished. That statement is a prelude to this post about two of my three Berninas that I am learning about. You might have read an earlier post about my free Bernina Record 730 and how excited I was to have this terrific sewing machine. I already had one that was is great working order so a second one that might need some work seemed to be right up my alley. This is where I'm still learning: every sewing machine is different, especially when they have spent their previous decades who-knows-where. The inside of this model had black gunk and I discovered one of the two belts was shredded. Belt replaced, it runs fine.....until I see smoke coming from the motor! Could it be oil burning off? There are no sparks but definitely smoke and it doesn't seem to burn off. Advice from others has me testing without the belt engaged: no smoke. Now I can assume the belt is on too tight but how can I loosen it? Berninas have very tight mechanisms and there is no wiggle room:

Bernina Record 730 motor view
Maybe I can put washers under the screws that anchor the motor to create a bit of ease and still secure the motor. I put this project aside for the moment to give it time to percolate a bit (hoping for a better answer).

I get ambitious and try to figure out why I haven't put the Bernina 807 Minimatic on sale yet. All set up and putting it through its paces but it's not moving into different patterns correctly. Maybe that was why I put it back in this cute red case:

Bernina 807 Minimatic
Looking into the opened top I can see when I move the pattern lever and the cams move into position there is a funny sound and slipping. There are metal gears and cams for the most part but there are two plastic gears and the one that controls the movement of the internal cams has a crack in it. I see a new one is only $25, a real buy for Bernina parts, but do I really want to take apart such a fine piece of engineering myself? Online research tells me this could be a couple of hours for a skills technician and possibly up to a $200 repair. It takes me four days to work up the courage to text the tech I know and ask if he is willing to do this job and how much it might run. I'm in for a big surprise because he quotes a figure less than half of the internet-found price.

Now the 807 is going to get a new gear and I can ask him the question about the smoking motor and how to loosen the belt. My broken Berninas might just find new homes yet!


Jolly Curmudgeon said...

Wow, I'm impressed. I have an 807 Bernina. Like you I have too many machines and have decided to sell it or give it away. Hawaii is not kind to metal machines. OK. I didn't take good care of it. I enjoyed reading your post.

Karen said...

Too much salt in the air? Humidity? If that's true I think I'll have to scratch Hawaii off my list of places to retire. ;-)