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Jim/Steelsewing

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My friend Kathy is in the envious position of having three of the round Boye needle cases. Stuck at home in April she decided to go through all of her tubes in an effort to fill one of the three.  It's close, but not quite there yet and she's been looking to acquire more tubes - with something in the tubes. So the goal isn't a Boye needle case with all the correct tubes in it, but a Boye needle case with all the correct tubes - and all the tubes are full. Sounds insane I know... but she's well past half way.

The question is... since we've all seen these cases, and sometimes there's tubes, and sometimes the tubes have something in them... would it be worth her while to continue this quest? Meaning is the whole worth considerably more than the parts? Has anyone ever seen a full Boye display? Is it more or less unheard of in collector's circles? If she eventually tossed up a full Boye display to auction as if it were nearly new... would there be any interest?

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SteveH-VSS

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Reply with quote  #2 
yes
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Ericka

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Reply with quote  #3 
I've been on a not-so-serious quest along these lines for a while now, ever since I kinda fell into buying a couple of cases.  I've bought two other cases on eBay (one was a 2-tier base with no stock), also bought lots that contained needles and shuttles on eBay.  The problem is trying to keep things to a reasonable cost.  Most people who get these cases at estate sales, etc, sell the individual tubes (needle and shuttle) separately and then sell the empty case.  They're always listing the individual tubes for fairly high prices.  For sellers, that's the way to make money.  For us collectors, it's difficult to put a complete case together at a reasonable price.  If money isn't a concern, it could be done easily, but that's not how I operate.  I'm still missing about 8 shuttles to complete my case.  One day it'll come.  I'm not in a hurry and if it never happens, that's okay, too.  I can tell you from selling a Boye case with some stock in it, you wouldn't get as much as if you were willing to sell each tube individually.  But, that takes time and serious dedication to selling. 

Ericka
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Jim/Steelsewing

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Reply with quote  #4 
Steve and Ericka thank you both. The idea of filling a case was all hers and she seems set to do it. I do realize that parting it out would have a value, but a full case would certainly draw some attention. It's a bit like the difference between those of us that will buy and old machine and restore it, and those that buy an old machine to strip it for parts, I can't say which is the wiser, but I do enjoy my old machines. =)

Kathy has now sent me another quandry:

Screen Shot 2020-06-30 at 10.13.35 PM.png  Screen Shot 2020-06-30 at 10.13.51 PM.png 

According to her case photos... (she has three) there are two different number 15 shuttles?

Any thoughts are most welcome


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jon

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Reply with quote  #5 
Hi Jim,

Top photo is the old Boye system and the bottom is the new.  Please advise to keep the needle contents honest.  Most future collectors wouldn't know the difference but those that do might be a little upset ;>[wink]

Jon
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Ericka

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Reply with quote  #6 
Yeah, I didn't buy any of the Boye cases to resell and make money.  A couple just kinda came my way and then I was on to seeing about getting a full one.  The one case that I've sold, I sold with partial contents and hopefully somebody else has a case that they can enjoy with a number of things in it.

Boye, for some unknown reason, changed their numbering system in the round metal cases between Early 1906/1907 and Late 1906-1907.  There was a great article on the NeedleBar site that's still available titled "Boye oh Boye" and goes over all the various commodity cases and also has a chart that shows the two different numbering systems side-by-side.  And there's more Boye info on Ismacs, I think, but it doesn't show the differences between those two very similar round metal cases.  I don't know that I can just copy the NeedleBar info here since it is marked as Copyrighted 2007 2008.  But maybe you can do a google search and find it?  Or, if someone tells me it's okay to post here, then I will.

Anyway, that's the reason for the difference.  And there really is no good reason.
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pgf

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Reply with quote  #7 
Quote:
Or, if someone tells me it's okay to post here, then I will.


It's always okay to post a link to a copyrighted page.

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OurWorkbench

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Reply with quote  #8 
Here is the link to "Boye Oh Boye" http://needlebar.org/main/boye/index.html

Just a FYI the "Known Boye Case Markings" is near the bottom as is the table for the different numbering systems.

Janey

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Ericka

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Reply with quote  #9 
Thanks for posting the link, Janey.  Do you know if people who aren't/weren't members of NeedleBar can access that article?  That's the reason why I was thinking of posting some of the info here, but if anyone can access it, that's even better.  It's such a shame that so much has been lost from the NeedleBar site, especially the picture library.  I used that SO much.

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OurWorkbench

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Reply with quote  #10 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ericka
Thanks for posting the link, Janey.  Do you know if people who aren't/weren't members of NeedleBar can access that article?  That's the reason why I was thinking of posting some of the info here, but if anyone can access it, that's even better.  It's such a shame that so much has been lost from the NeedleBar site, especially the picture library.  I used that SO much.

Ericka


Yes, the article is accessible to non-members.  From my understanding the 'discussions' are not available.  I am not, nor have I ever been a member.  I do like to research stuff and frequently search site specific.  I and many others rrrrrrrreeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaallllllllyyyyyy miss the picture library.

Janey

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pgf

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Reply with quote  #11 
Yes, I can see it, and have never been a member.
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Farmer John

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Reply with quote  #12 
I also have three Boye needle dispensers and take Erika's approach to adding to the contents.  Not just having something in the tubes is good enough for me.  After 100 years ,the contents of any particular tube may be just about anything but the correct needle for the tube number.  Some tubes are filled with hand sewing needles, while others may have two or three different sewing machine needles.  I enjoy the time spent with digital calipers and needle dimension charts, to identify and correctly  locate the needles. 
     We collectors should set up a swap system, as I have spaces in the dispensers yet to be filled. 
John
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Ericka

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Reply with quote  #13 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Farmer John
We collectors should set up a swap system, as I have spaces in the dispensers yet to be filled. 
John


Yes, we should, because I have extra needles in cases and need just a few shuttles in cases.  I've also got a whole 'nother case with some contents that I need to sell but just haven't had the time or energy to do it.

Ericka
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jon

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Reply with quote  #14 
I have an excess of Boye #2, 6, 8, 24, and 26 tubes with contents if anyone would like to work a swap.  Also #2 and 8 old style tubes with contents.  PM if any interest.

Jon 
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jon

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Reply with quote  #15 
Quote:
Originally Posted by jon
I have an excess of Boye #2, 6, 8, 24, and 26 tubes with contents if anyone would like to work a swap.  Also #2 and 8 old style tubes with contents.  PM if any interest.

Jon 



No takers so far.  Here is a brief summary of the contents.  

#2--- Household, Marguerite, 1x7

#6--- Davis NVF, Standard Rotary, 15x1

#8--- Weed, Domestic Fiddlebed, 1x4

#24-- New Royal Early, 20x1

#26--American #7, 1x2

#2 OS-- 1x4

#8 OS--1x7

Jon


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hilltophomesteader

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Reply with quote  #16 
I have a lot of duplicates in my stash, but can't get to it right now (in Dry Box storage).  I like the idea of swapping some, but I'll have to wait until later this Fall.  
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Ericka

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Reply with quote  #17 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hilltophomesteader
I have a lot of duplicates in my stash, but can't get to it right now (in Dry Box storage).  I like the idea of swapping some, but I'll have to wait until later this Fall.  


Sounds okay with me.  I'm in no hurry.  I know I'm needing shuttles, not needles, but I've got extra needles and maybe a very few shuttles that I could swap.  I'm needing shuttles numbered 1, 9, 11, 13 and 15.

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Jim/Steelsewing

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Reply with quote  #18 
Another perplexing question: Many Boye tubes are marked with 2,3, or 4 needles. Would this depend on an evolution and which of the different cases? (3 needles versus 4?). A 29cents price is on some of the tubes. Some don't have a number of needles in the tube.  The article shows some tube detail but not this information. =)
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hilltophomesteader

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Reply with quote  #19 
Ericka, yes, that's what mine are mainly lacking - shuttles.  I have a new-to-me Boye case with some needle tubes but absolutely NO shuttles or bobbins.  Even the bobbin clips are gone.  In our Dry Box storage, I've got my older Boye case with more contents, and the wooden cabinet with drawer and lots of needles, but I can't get to any of it right now to know for sure what I've got.  

Jim - my older Boye case seems to have 3 needles per tube and the newer (brighter blue) case seems to have 4 needles per tube.  Of course, I have no way of knowing if any of the tubes are original to their cases or not......

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Ericka

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Reply with quote  #20 

Jim, I'm not sure if this helps answer your question or just creates more, but here's a scan from a page from my Boye Guide.  It shows 4 needles per tube being sold in the rotary cases.  I can't find a publication date on the guide, though. 

Another person on the NeedleBar site found a Boye Catalogue, which he says is from 1906 and looks quite a bit earlier than my Guide.  One of the pics that he posted showed that you could purchase Boye needle tubes containing 2, 4, 6 or 12 needles.  The pricing for those were as follows:
2 needles - $0.06
4 needles - $0.11
6 needles - $0.15
12 needles - $0.27
You could buy the complete rotary case, with 144 tubes, with 4 needles in each for $23.00 (no mention of shuttles)
Or you could buy just the flat wooden case that opened on hinges to reveal all the needle tubes with:
One gross tubes, 2 needles in each tube for $12.00
One gross tubes, 4 needles in each tube for $20.28 (I think that's what's on the scan)

Hope this helps,
Ericka
Boye Guide.jpg 

Odd that neither my Guide or the other persons Catalog shows the more usual 3 needles per tube that you generally find.

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Ericka

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Reply with quote  #21 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hilltophomesteader
Ericka, yes, that's what mine are mainly lacking - shuttles.  I have a new-to-me Boye case with some needle tubes but absolutely NO shuttles or bobbins.  Even the bobbin clips are gone. 


Oh, yes, the bobbin clips!  I actually have some extras of those, too, but would also have to dig to find out which ones they are.

Maybe one of these days we'll all get our acts together and get organized - I know I'm really working on it [biggrin]

Ericka
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macybaby

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Reply with quote  #22 
I've got a Boye case that has the correct needles and shuttle tubs and they are all filled with the correct item.  Not sure if I've got all the bobbin clips full,  but think so.

So it's not an unattainable goal,  but do be aware that people sometimes swapped stuff out (not knowing what was what ) and I've found a lot of needles/shuttles in tubes that were not correct.

My favorite case is the three tier one (it is the old numbering system).

The top case has the machine supplies,  the middle has more information on the top,  but is designed to hold manual sewing needls,  and the bottom is a pullout spin tray you can "dial" to show replacement parts for different machines.


The slippery slope is when you decide you want a machine to go with each type of needle/shuttle that is in the case.   That was my mistake. 



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Ericka

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Reply with quote  #23 
Quote:
Originally Posted by macybaby

My favorite case is the three tier one (it is the old numbering system).

The top case has the machine supplies,  the middle has more information on the top,  but is designed to hold manual sewing needls,  and the bottom is a pullout spin tray you can "dial" to show replacement parts for different machines.


Oooh, I recently found the patent for that 3-tier case and had never seen one like it.  Could you post a photo sometime?  Here's a link to the patent for it:
http://www.freepatentsonline.com/1275655.pdf

I don't have room to get a machine that goes with each type of needle/shuttle, but I've said that before about different types of attachments, like puzzle boxes and Singercraft stuff.  It really is such a slippery slope.

When I saw that patent I really wondered if any were actually made, since I'd never heard them referred to.  Strange that, a few days later, you post about one 😉

Ericka
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