Friday, July 29, 2016

An Italian Dreamboat

This little Italian gem, a Necchi Nora, came to me in a somewhat sorry state. Nora has seen many years of use, possibly abuse, and is broken down electrically speaking. There were some pretty scary wires that I didn't know what to do with. Multispeed motor?Switches?
Nora's motor on back with speed selector
 She stayed in her broken down box until I had time to think about her. Now was the time.

I was reading about treadle sewing machines and best types of machines to put into a treadle when I read that Necchi's make good treadlers. Necchi? Maybe a Necchi Nora? Well, I have one of those I could try out...

Necchi Nora in treadle (she's actually a pale green)
I measured and could see it would fit into the treadle cabinet I already had but the leather belt that was on the Singer 66 I just removed from the table was too short. I hated to take it off, especially to open up the clip, but it had to come off. At first I tried my plastic tubing in the standard width but it kept slipping. Thinking it was too long, I shortened it. Twice. Maybe it was too thick so I used narrower tubing. This time I cleaned the tubing and the track it runs in with rubbing alcohol to remove any residue. Nope. I shortened it. Nope. Finally, FINALLY, I got out a spare leather treadle belt. To shorten it to the right length is always a bit of a judgement call because when you add the clip it is just so much work. I've only done this a few times before and I'm far from experienced so I want to do this only once with the leather belt. I get it all in place with the clip pinched down and give it a whirl.
Treadle belt in place with metal clip on the left
It works! It works really well! I'm a bit surprised because I've been singing the praises of the plastic tubing...until I couldn't get this one to actually work. It sailed right along with very little effort, and now I have a sewing machine that can treadle with a zigzag stitch:
This is considered semi-automatic, making special stitches with the black hard plastic cams. You do not choose the width control or that takes it off of the special stitch. If you only want zigzag in various widths, you move the width control. It only does special stitches with cams, zigzag with control lever, and straight stitch. Of course, it has stitch length control and will go backwards, too. It does need some adjustment because even though the needle can move into left, center, and right positions, the cams only work when it is on the left needle position. I'll have to see what I can do about that. It came with a whole variety of feet but there are only 3 that actually fit along with three cams (one is in the machine):
2 decorative cams (black) along with three feet plus zigzag foot on machine
I can look through my collection of feet to find more, print out a manual, add needles and class 15 bobbins, and she's a complete set. Oh, that door up on top? It is missing but not at all necessary so I'm thinking it looks a bit like a convertible with the top down, don't you think?

Nora, you can speed along without a motor and are a delight to use.


Courtney said...

Karen, this post came at an ideal time. I just got this same machine about a week ago and have been getting her cleaned up. Two days ago I noticed that the knob on the tension wheel was loose. Throwing caution to the wind, I took the knob off and ... I'm sure you can picture the followup. Now I sit with all the pieces on the rod, in the correct order I think, but I cannot get the knob to fit on securely so I cannot adjust any tension. I have read this post several times now and scanned the pics, but can't see the tension dial setup closely. Would you be willing to post or send a picture from the side so I can double check that I have it assembled correctly?
You're right the pale green is a great color. I'm looking forward to trying her out when I get this tension wheel fixed. Thank you!

Karen said...

I can't post a photo in the reply feature but I do have a pdf of a very nice exploded view of three different types of tension assemblies for Necchi's if you would like to email me.