Repairing a Singer Sewing Machine

Some problems that you may experience with your sewing machine can be repaired or adjusted at home, others will need to be looked at by a repair person. This is a guide about repairing a Singer sewing machine.


May 4, 2016 Flag
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I have a Kenmore 8 sewing machine. The needle will move up and down with the handwheel on the right, but not with the pedal. When I press down the pedal the wheel moves, but the needle does not. I checked the bobbin threading position and also took apart the bobbin area and there was no tangled thread that I could see. The machine zooms like it's working, but the needle is still. Any ideas?
Thanks so much!

October 1, 20160 found this helpful

Did you ever find the problem because mines does the same thing this is my 2nd sewing machine by singer stopping when it wants to stop.

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October 12, 20160 found this helpful

July 23, 2016 Flag
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I have a Featherweight sewing machine, circa 1950, Mod#221-1. I don't use it much and then only for hemming slacks, shorts, fixing my flags, etc. It has always worked great. The last time I set it up for use was about 2 weeks ago. I was half way finished with my job when I noticed it was stitching perfectly on top, but the bottom stitching was all bunching up. So I pulled all of the stitching out and was going to start over, but needed more thread on the bobbin. I was just starting the process of filling the bobbin when it just quit functioning. The motor will run fine, but it just won't sew. The belt is looking good and motor is good. I tried to turn the wheel on the right, but can't. However, the sewing arm will slightly move up/down when I try to move the wheel, but it just won't move any further. It is as if something is either broken or has become disconnected, so that it won't function. I would like to try to fix this with some help before I turn it loose on some of the local repair persons. None have very good references and all try to overcharge and have no customer service. I'll take any help you can give me.


BTW: I'm new to sewing and have only used this machine which does nothing but straight stitch. Additionally, this has a lot of sentimental value since it was my grandma's and my mother's before she gave it to me.

August 15, 20160 found this helpful

The Singer Featherweight is an excellent machine! Yours may need grease in some of it's internal gears and oil in all it's other thirsty places. Here is a great blog post about cleaning and lubricating your Featherweight: ... pa-date-with-your-featherweight.html

I am also including a link to Dave McCallum's site where you can purchase a very informative DVD and book about restoring, cleaning, and maintaining your Featherweight.

I truly hope you get your lovely machine back in working order. There's really nothing new that can compare to the vintage sewing machines. I am now the proud "parent" of a Minnesota Model D treadle machine (1912), a Singer 66 Redeye that I am going to convert to a hand crank machine (1911), a Japanese clone of the Singer 15 (circa 1950), and a Kenmore 158 (late 60's early 70's). They each have their own quirks, but each of them sew much better than my modern Singer Curvy (which I am considering selling.)

I truly hope the above listed sites can offer you the assistance you need in order get your lovely little lady up and running again. I hope she brings you many more years of happiness, especially since she belonged to your grandmother and your mother. Family heirlooms such as that should be treasured members of the family as well as functional ones.

God bless,


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August 15, 20160 found this helpful

March 12, 2016 Flag
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I got a Singer sewing machine model 7011. It stitches on the top, but gathers on the bottom of the fabric. We changed the bobbin, but nothing changed. What would be the next step? We got it at a garage sale about 10yrs ago.

March 14, 20161 found this helpful

If you want to keep this machine, invest in a 'professional' to go over it for you. Sometimes a needle breaks and all pieces don't get removed, to wrong type of thread used, bobbin aged, esp if using metal bobbin. Keeping machine clean is very important, and oiled regularly WHERE it is required. Hope you have the manual for it, OR you can google MANUAL for said machine and model. They are online, some free. I recently updated from my 30 year old machine. Had one from the 1960 prior to that. And yes, they moved to the basement for non-intricate sewing. They can still do tarps, heavy jackets, jean zippers, etc. Taking care of machines is what keeps them going.

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September 29, 2016 Flag
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I was sewing on some sticky hook and loop (which I now realize was a mistake) and my needle got jammed. I got everything unstuck and put in a new needle. However now my hook will not turn properly. It is as though it is rubbing/getting stuck on hook cover. If take off the hook cover and hold the hook in place with my finger, it moves just fine. When I put on the cover and move the machine manually, there is a grinding noise and sometimes the hooks stops moving altogether, like it is caught. The needle seems to be in the correct spot and not rubbing so I didn't think it was a timing issue. Please help! Thanks.

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August 15, 2016 Flag
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I have a Singer sewing machine and having completed making a bag using the 'denim' Singer sewing machine needle, I found I was unable to take the needle out. It appears to have solidly embedded itself. I tried WD40 and pliers, but no luck. I don't want to break the machine. Before I take it to the Singer shop do you have any hints?

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August 16, 20160 found this helpful

Can you move the needle at all, Patricia? Even by hand? (I'm wanting to ascertain if the component which houses the needle can be lifted or lowered at all.) In the interest of saving time, feel free to get back to me at


Rose Anne

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September 19, 2016 Flag
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I have a Singer Confidence Quilter machine. I lowered the feed dog to sew on a button and they will not go back up. Help?

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September 17, 2016 Flag
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I have a Singer 9217. The tension has given me issues. I have taken it apart and brushed out dust and thread pieces. I've checked adjustments, but my tension lever feels loose. I need to remove the plastic casing around the lever, so my husband can get behind it to do repair, but I can't figure out how to remove it.

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April 6, 2016 Flag
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I just bought a Singer 301a. The needle is centre correctly, but my attached presser foot is not. It is shifted to the left so the needle is very close to the right hand side of the foot. This is the case for all the feet. How do I adjust the presser foot bar so they are centred correctly. Otherwise, I see broken needles in my future.

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April 7, 20160 found this helpful

If your machine is a new purchase, I would return it to the store to fix the problem or replace the machine.

Just now, my husband received the fourth new printer from the company trying to replace the original machine we purchased. Since the problem keeps repeating, we demanded a different new printer to avoid the same problem.

What a pain!!!

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October 15, 2015 Flag
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I'm new here and hoping for some help or guidance. I have just bought a Singer 99k. I think it's a Simanco 33663. I've given the machine a good cleaning and oil, I'm happy with how it's cleaned up, all seems well apart from something that should be happening with the bobbin thread.

When I attempt to sew, the top thread does just what it should in respect that it goes around the bobbin case and pulls up the bobbin thread. So far so good. :o)
But then when I attempt a few stitches all I get is the top cotton in place, (these stitches pop out because they are not anchored.) There's no sign of the bobbin thread :o( I've read some trouble shooting threads and used a new needle and adjusted the bobbin tension.

I don't know much about these machines yet and was wondering if it's a timing issue, but given that the top thread collects bobbin thread everytime, I thought maybe timing is OK? I've looked underneath the machine and can see where the metal part catches the top thread and takes it round to the bobbin, but I can't work out which bit might involve connecting the bobbin thread! I thought a vintage machine would be easy to maintain on my own!

Any advice would be very much appriciated.
Many thanks in advance :o)

October 16, 20150 found this helpful

You can take the machine to a repair tech - it's the bobbin gear (or the rubber 'belt') and needs to be changed and the repair tech will have access to the part - probably has a tub full of them:) This applies to 99Ks that are hand crank or electrified - the workings are the same on both types. I do a lot of refurb and repair on these here in Scotland for my Sewing 101 students.

There is a free download available online for servicing the hand-cranks (99K) and treadles (usually the 66K) if you're feeling adventurous, and spare parts can be purchased once you know the name of the part you need. The first link is for the service manual - be prepared it takes some time to download all of the sections but it's well worth the time! The Tools For Self Reliance charity group refurbishes non-electric vintage machines and then donates the machines to be used by sewing business entrepreneurs - you will be able to download without having to pay, join, or pledge a machine donation but if you are interested, all the info you need is there as well. The manual at the link below is aimed at Singer vintage non-electrics and you will find it fascinating and easy to follow: ... l_information/sewing_machine_manual/

This link takes you to a parts supplier - he carries an amazing selection of spares for vintage Singers and is very reasonably priced:

Word of warning - these vintage treasures are addictive!

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Anonymous Flag
October 23, 20150 found this helpful

September 8, 2016 Flag
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The presser bar of my sewing machine, a Singer model 1007, is stuck and could not be moved either up or down.

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November 28, 2015 Flag
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I have a Singer 600E, I've threaded the bobbin and all that good stuff. But when I push my pedal down my needle won't move, the motor runs, but nothing happens. Is it my pedal?

November 29, 20150 found this helpful

First of all, download this free copy of the user manual from the Singer website:

Be sure you've followed ALL the instructions for winding the bobbin and restoring the settings for sewing mode. Be especially sure you're using the correct bobbin for your machine - the Singer 600E Touch'n'Sew will work with the wrong bobbin - for a while - and then it will quit working.

If that doesn't help it's most likely the bobbin gear (not a home fix!) and time to take your vintage Touch'n'Sew to a repair tech - look for one adverting he/she is factory trained and or authorised as the Touch'n'Sew, built from 1964 and forward, is a rather complicated machine to work on and requires specialised knowledge specific to the machine.

The bobbin gear on your model is especially touchy - it's magnetised and isn't at all easy to fix without that specialised knowledge, and faithful use of ONLY the designated bobbin for the machine.

Best luck, I hope you're back sewing again soon!

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November 29, 20150 found this helpful

February 24, 2016 Flag
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I bought an old Singer 6110 from a yardsale. It plugs in, and the light turns on, but when I press the foot pedal, it doesn't run. The cords and foot pedal seem to be in good shape. I need a little help.

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February 26, 20160 found this helpful

You need to take this sewing machine to a qualified repair tech - there are so many reasons why it won't sew there isn't room here to list them all:) Buying a sewing machine at a yard sale, flea market, second hand shop, free classified ad paper, etc, is fun - but should only be undertaken by someone with the understanding the machine should be taken straightaway for a check over by a qualified repair tech. A sewer can find amazing bargains but part of the bargain should be the understanding a professional (or self-taught tooled up) tech should be the next person(s) to handle the machine.

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March 2, 20160 found this helpful
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