The twins are 2 model 99k machines I picked up over a month ago now. I got both of them a day apart.
The first one, possible name: Jellybean. (That’s her in front) I was watching this machine on ebay. The ad mentioned that the machine was missing “the bobbin case” and being sold for parts as a result. It was missing most of the light as well. It sure looked like the bobbin case was in place in the images, so I thought it worth watching. If memory serves (and it often doesn’t), the asking price was $100.
It was being sold by a seller about 30 mins away from me, then suddenly the ad was gone. The machine didn’t sell, the buy it now was ended by the seller. Hmm… oh well, it was one of many i was watching to see what sort of price the machines would sell for.
Coincidentally, I was also haunting kijiji at the same time, and in my search a day or so later, a garage sale in Opal came up as one of my sewing machine hits. The ad said that there was a Vintage 99 for sale. Since Opal was where the seller from ebay was from, I sent an email off to her asking if she was the ebay seller, and if this was the machine that she had on ebay with the missing bobbin case. She confirmed that she was, and it was, and gave me the punchline. She would be selling the machine for $25 at the garage sale. I asked her to hold it, and said I would buy it for sure. We went out and grabbed it the next day, Friday.
Saturday, we hit a couple of the non-regular shops in Edmonton looking for parts, since the Singer store was closed for 2 weeks while the owners were on vacation. While we were at one of the shops looking for a slide plate, the technician pulled out a 99 that was just sitting in the back. This one had a light, but was actually missing the bobbin case. At first glance, the carry case looked to be in better shape though. He put it back in the workshop area and announced that he had no slide plate for me.
I kept peeking at the poor forlorn little machine, knowing it was likely to be thrown out one day when it finally got in the way too many times, and finally asked how much he wanted for the machine. $50. A little high, but not out of the ordinary for a shop price. I took this one home too. “Oh look,” I said to Ryan, “Another rescue.” I heard a groan from his direction, and couldn’t help but laugh. I said it would be a parts machine, or I would fix it and sell it. He says it still counts as one of the herd until I part it or sell it. No fair.
A couple of weeks ago, I pulled the best parts of each machine off and put them all on Jellybean. I did the same with the case, re-gluing what needed glue on the exterior, then made a list of the parts she needed to be complete. Not many really, just a slide plate for her. I will also still need to repair the joints on one of the corners of the case, but will put a tutorial up about that, since I’ve seen a number of cases now that need this sort of repair.
The other machine however, had a much longer list. Slide plate, case bolts (the ones that hold the machine to the case), bobbin case, needle plate, needle plate screws, and now a light. Hmm.. not a lot left to part it.
They both sat on my desk for a few weeks while I decided what to do with them.
A couple of days ago, I sat down and did a full cleaning and oiling on both of them. I also put the parts for Jellybean, and a couple of the parts for the parts machine on order. The parts machine looks to be a fixer-upper that I will end up selling. The only things it will be missing once the parts show up are the slide plate and the light, basically what Jellybean was missing when I picked her up.
Truth be told, the “parts” machine is a little smoother running and possibly has slightly nicer stitches, but definitely in rougher shape. The body of the machine has more chips and scratches.
How they would both do after a final tuneup would be interesting to see. Usually, if a machine stitches well, I won’t bother doing a tuneup on it, but these ones seemed finicky, and I couldn’t balance the tension with the needle tension alone, or a quick tweak on the bobbin case tension.
I’ll post my findings about the tuneup in another post.