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Singer 99 Re-Wire

Tuesday, April 22, 2014
This post will show you step-by-step how I re-wired the light, motor and knee "pedal" on this Singer 99 machine.

 Start by removing the screw that holds the terminal to the machine and unscrew the black terminal caps from the prongs.

Take all the wires off.  Don't worry.. I have a diagram that shows how to put everything back on the terminal!

Set the machine on it's back to unscrew the "pedal" from the underside.

Take out the screws holding the plate against the front side.

 Unscrew the base of the "pedal" to take off the top.

I used a piece of by-the-foot jacketed wire from the hardware store but I would suggest finding something that isn't so stiff.  Even your black/red wires used for re-wiring the motor would work and heat-shrink them together before you put the top of the "pedal" back on. 

Have one side longer than the other.  The longer side will be YELLOW and shorter, BLACK.

 Expose the ends of your wires for your terminals.

Slide heat-shrink tubing on your wires before you crimp terminals on.

 Label/mark your longer wire on the end so you know it goes on the YELLOW terminal prong.  Screw wires to "pedal".

 Screw top back onto "pedal", place in base and replace all screws.

Remove motor from machine and take off motor bracket that attaches to motor.

 Take out small screw holding belt pulley on shaft.

Remove 2 long screw on motor side that holds everything together. Pull everything apart.  TIP: I had to persuade the center casing to pull off of the ends by soaking some oil around the edges and running a very small-thin screw driver along the edges.

If the motor is propped up with the wires coming from the top, your left wire is RED and the right wire is BLACK.  Cut the RED wire so it is 1-1/4" long and the BLACK wires so it is 1" long.

I propped my motor up with some wood clamps.  Stabilize your motor while you work on it.  Solder new wires on, RED to RED and BLACK to BLACK.  

  Shrink your tubing over solder joints with a lighter.

 Knot wires together as close to motor as you can.  Before putting your motor back together, heat shrink larger tubing over BOTH wires (not pictures here - see below picture).

 Screw casing back together.

 Attach pulley.

Add metal bracket that attaches to sewing machine.

 Remove light from machine.

 Remove light bulb and bulb shield. There are 3 screws around the shell that houses the ends of the wires, remove those and housing.

 Because there wasn't much room in the housing for large terminals, I decided to make my own by wrapping the ends of the wires around an allen-wrench (pick something the right size)...

...then solder them.

 Attach new wires on one at a time to light body.  The wires attach on the RED and YELLOW terminal prongs.  I could tell which one was the RED so I put my RED wire on that, and the YELLOW I put BLACK.

Heat shrink a LONG piece of tubing over both wires and slip housing back on.  Screw back together and re-attach lightbulb and shield.

 I kept my wires extra long to ensure I wouldn't make them too-short...

 ...once you can hold them up to the machine where they will attach to the terminal you can trim them down.  I still kept mine a little long until I was actually ready to attach them to the terminal.

 Because there are so many wires attaching to the terminal body I decided to make the terminal connections with the wires just as I did with the light, this time using a bigger allen wrench the size of the prongs on the terminal.

The cover for the pedal had a broken grommet so I used the grommet out of my re-wire kit that would usually go on the motor housing.  Re-attach pedal cover on machine base, threading wires through grommet. 

Use this diagram to help you re-attach everything back to the terminal.

Almost there!  I had to re-cut the "pedal" wires a few times until they were just the right length.  I didn't want them too long that they were sticking out everywhere, but long enough that I could tilt the machine back for oiling without pulling on them.


5 Singer Machines - Overhauled

 I got a little crazy and collected 5 Singer machines that needed to be overhauled.  Some were worse than others.  I had 3 Singer 201-2's that needed to be re-wired, a Singer 99 that needed to be completely re-wired (light, motor, knee "pedal") and a Singer 128 that only needed to be cleaned and oiled.

I wish I had a video of the first experience I had with a machine that had exposed wires.  It really is dangerous!  I had plugged a machine in and tilted it back to see underneath and when I set the machine back down against the base, the exposed wires got caught between the metal machine and the base, it sparked and the whole wire started sparking and smoking all the way down to the plug (looked like a wick from a stick of dynamite when you light it on fire).  It felt like everything was in slow motion and I wondered whether to let the sparking happen and possibly ruin the whole machine/motor or grab the base of the machine and yank the whole thing off the cord plugged into the wall.  I ended up yanking the machine from the cord while it was sparking - probably a bad idea but the machine was salvaged!

Okay, so onto bad wires... if you have an older machine, check your wires before you attempt to plug it in and sew!  Most machines before 1950 need to be re-wired!  If you need a re-wire kit for an older Singer machine I sell them on eBay.

Here's the 3 201-2 motors off and ready to be worked on.  Let's just say my living room table was a mess for a few days.

The worst 201-2 in the bunch was this one that had the motor wires completely melted to the side of the machine and had even melted so much that there was a hard-molten pile of wire-coating on the base of the machine.  The guy I bought it from said a lady came over and tested it before I bought it and couldn't get it to work properly.  Once I saw the wires I was really nervous for what could have happened!

This is what the wires looked like when I took them off the terminal!

This is the outcome after re-wiring and cleaning the machine.  So much better and it runs nice and smooth!

Here's the exposed wires of the 99.

Here's the 99 being worked on.  To see the full re-wire process of the Singer 99, click here.

Pattern Review - Simplicity 2258

I saw this pattern and loved the idea of the waist tie and pockets, plus it had an elastic waist (which I'm usually not a fan of but I've had horrible luck getting fitted skirts to fit just right).

SKILL LEVEL:  A beginner can totally make these!  This was definitely the easiest skirt I've made using a pattern.

THINGS TO KNOW: There's nothing that really stands out.  You will learn a lot of new things, such as inserting an elastic waist band, making pockets and sewing lace/trim if you wish.

TIPS: Make your skirt a few inches longer than what you think you want it to be, that way you can actually try it on before making the final hem.  Measure twice, cut once!

WHAT I DID DIFFERENTLY:  I made a combination of skirts B & C.  I liked the length and lace on skirt B but I liked the waist tie and no side-slits on skirt c.  I also added a lining so I didn't have to wear a slip; it looks and feels more professional that it would without the lining and only costs a few dollars more.  I also used the lining fabric for the pockets so they stood out.

I love how this skirt turned out and I feel girlie in it.  It's easy to make and super easy to customize to what you want.  If you don't want pockets or the waist tie then don't; if you want to add length or trim on the bottom, go ahead!  The possibilities are endless!

My Favorite Project Posts

Wednesday, April 2, 2014
It's true I always have a project going on!
Here are some of my favorite projects I've posted about in the past (and some of the most visited ones too)!




Sewing? Sewing machines? Woodworking? Furniture refinishing? General crafts? Home Decor? 

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