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pgf

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Reply with quote  #1 
Anyone know anything about the electified New Home Midget?   Like, when were they made?  Another picture of this shows that the drive is via friction wheel.

There's one for sale near me -- sadly, it's in a batch of 7 machines, some of which are rusty toys.  Three of the machines are interesting (or, at least, have enough intrinsic value to make the purchase palatable), and this is one of them.

paul

electric_midget.jpg


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OurWorkbench

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Reply with quote  #2 
I was able to find cached versions, but think if you click on the link at the top of the page - it will give an error.

http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:p8HAYSsITtoJ:needlebar.org/cm/displayimage.php%3Falbum%3D487%26pid%3D4239+&cd=17&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&lr=lang_en
http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:RG_nmJWQeg0J:needlebar.org/cm/displayimage.php%3Fpid%3D7908+&cd=12&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&lr=lang_en

and then there is https://www.victoriansweatshop.com/post/new-home-midget-7981280

Janey

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pgf

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Reply with quote  #3 
Thanks Janey!  I clearly need to learn how to use google's cache.  It used to be easier, I thnk.  

I'm really curious about the electric version.  Seems like an odd machine to electrify, probably late in its lifespan.

paul

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OurWorkbench

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I have no idea how long the cached version will work. When I searched there were several that did NOT have a cached version. The other day I checked a cached version and there was NO image, but did have the text. I will sometimes just look at the "Text" version of cached links. It is kind of weird as I google search for some things on the "other board" as I can go to the correct page (of multi-page threads)for the results. Interestingly, I can't get some of them to load, unless I just do the text version.

It does seem strange to electrify that machine, but I suppose it could have been a "refurb" at some point. One of the links seemed to indicate the patent date of 1912. I wonder if the one you pictured has a patent date.

Janey

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Reply with quote  #5 
There's a picture of the same electrification over at Sewalot, where Alex says something to the effect of "...which was later electrified".  So I think it's a factory job.

I'm waiting to hear back from the seller.

paul

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SteveH-VSS

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Reply with quote  #6 
I never even knew that they did that to the midget.  Cool machine to have electric.

ETA:  I like the switch on the base.  Is there a foot controller with it?

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pgf

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Reply with quote  #7 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SteveH-VSS
I never even knew that they did that to the midget.  Cool machine to have electric.

ETA:  I like the switch on the base.  Is there a foot controller with it?


Dunno.  It's not in either of their pictures, though they do show a ratty plug cord.  You'd think there would be, unless New Home had finally decided it was really just a toy machine, and just made it run really slowly.  :-)  I haven't asked the seller -- I decided to use up my pre-visit questions by asking about the shuttle/bobbin instead.

They also have a Kay-an-ee Sew Master toy, which also appears to have just a switch, with no controller.

paul

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Reply with quote  #8 
Following up some more.  As I said on the "Today's adventure" thread, I now own this machine.

There's no speed controller, though there is a rotary on/off switch on the motor itself, in addition to the one on the base.

I submit that the switch on the base isn't original to the machine.
  • First, why would there be two switches, in series?
  • The rectangular hole for the switch on the base is somewhat crudely made, the screw holes aren't centered on the rectangular hole, and the chrome switchplate is a little cheesy.  Not only that, but the switch was installed directly over the nice decal of the picture of the needle that these machines all have.
  • The switch is a terrible choice for the location:  it has long brass posts sticking out from its back, and the wires insert into the ends of those posts.  There's barely clearance between the ends of the posts and the surface the machine sits on for the wires.  Not to mention the posts were covered by globs of old cloth electrical tape.
  • Finally -- there's no grommet (and no room for one) where the cord goes through the base to get to the switch, and the hole was never deburred!  Somehow I'm not surprised that the cord insulation was melted when I found it.
I think I've made my case.  :-)   If I leave the switch in place after rewiring, it will definitely be non-functional.  But I'll probably remove it.

paul

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Reply with quote  #9 

And, one more bit of annoying trivia about the electrified Midget:  the motor is a synchronous AC motor.  Not speed controllable.  How are you supposed to sew with a machine that only sews at full speed, and has an on/off switch that's out of sight on the far side of the hand wheel and right next to the spinning friction drive?

It feels like someone didn't think very hard about this design.

(Or maybe the motor is so weak and the drive ratio is such that the machine never goes very fast anyway.  Guess I'll find out someday.)

paul

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Reply with quote  #10 
I recently added a motor to a 201k, 0.53A Bakelite Singer. It was nice and quiet, but slow speed. She said it would be nice when grandson sews. Hand cranking can be pushed faster.

Then changed it to a 1.5A motor 3x power, wife said too much for her. The starting point from electronic controller too much, and would overrun stopping. Then put on an 80W, about 0.7A, she said sized perfect, emulates Singer 201 potted motor. Figuring belt losses greater than gears.

The Midget design with just enough power, is simple, safe for both operator and machine. It might be slow, but faster than hand stitching. Cute machine.

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pgf

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Reply with quote  #11 
Well, I'm looking forward to trying it.  I just have trouble picturing sewing without a speed control.

It would be all rewired, cleaned up and back together already if I hadn't made a bonehead mistake during reassembly which now requires i reset the timing.

paul

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Reply with quote  #12 
The motor on the Midget is definitely _not_ over-powered.  Startup, once the worn-out friction wheel engages, is slow enough.  Sewing speed once running is almost too fast, especially considering you need to reach over the top of the machine to turn it off, hopefully remembering not to grab the friction drive wheel by mistake in your hurry.  :-)

The motor is not, however, strong enough to power the machine plus the bobbin winder.  A new friction drive might help, but I'm not convinced.

paul

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Reply with quote  #13 
Can someone with a Midget (or Little Worker, or Mothers' Helper, or Knickerbocker :-) help me out with some measurements?  I'd like to fabricate a crank handle for my Midget, so I'd love to know length/width/thickness of the steel arm, and maybe a close-up photo or two.

I can get the dimensions of the D-hole from the shaft on the machine, and my crank handle will be from whatever I can find in the way of shoulder bolts at the hardware store, so the dimensions of the holes in the crank arm aren't that important, though I guess the distance between them might be interesting.

I know Steve has one, but it's probably still in a box somewhere.  :-)   Anyone else?

paul

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