Friday, October 14, 2016

Easy Peasy

In my rush to get the sewing machine cabinets out to the garage and while I had muscle show up to help, I traded out the standard Singer treadle for a really fancy parlor cabinet treadle. It had been in the garage for many months and I never cleaned it so now was my moment to tackle this project. Sometimes the easiest  way is the best way and it proved to be true this time.

Instead of my original plan to strip off the finish with denatured alcohol, I decided to just clean it with a damp cloth. It was really dirty and much of the dullness was simply dirt. There were a few loose parts along the bottom that I can glue and nail back into place but all-in-all it did not need to be stripped to become beautiful once again. The veneer was almost gone from the waterfall section of one door so I removed the rest of it, sanded, then stained the wood that remained.
See the door on the right side? Veneer is removed!

While I was at it I dabbed a bit of stain on any of the other exposed parts that were now light wood. This was an easy fix and it looked amazing:

While the stain was drying I cleaned out the inside and tried to figure out how a Singer 66 Red Eye would fit. It could sit in the top framework but how did it "attach"? I looked online for some kind of a guide and found two videos about this type of cabinet and how they work.  It works on the principle of an elevator. Say what? I kid you not, it moves up and down on a heavy duty spring. My parlor cabinet had all of the parts and the leather belt even fit the Singer 66 sitting up top.
Treadle mechanism hides behind a door on right.
 Watching those videos really helped because now I could raise and lower the machine without getting hurt due to the spring action. This is so amazing!
My Singer 66 Red Eye dates to 1917

Next up is leveling the head in the opening and I thought it should have a nice coat of the Howard's Feed & Wax to bring out a glow:

Closer view of detail work that is all glued on (but real wood)
See what I mean? This is quite amazing: with only a cleaning and minor repair this parlor cabinet has returned to some of its original beauty.

What happened to the standard treadle that I put on the sale? I decided to add a Singer 306 so you can  straight and zigzag stitch. I left the motor attached so it can even be used with electricity if you are into speed. It really works quite well and I almost hate to part with it but I keep telling myself  you can't keep them all.

1 comment:

BarbaraShowell said...

That is one beautiful cabinet, and the machine is gorgeous too.