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kndpakes

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Reply with quote  #1 

I usually collect non-electric machines, the more primitive the better. I recently got sucked into the rave reviews of Singer 403s and bought one at a local auction. I picked it up today and was pleased to discover that it has the manual and all of the original feet and cams. Yay!

However, I feel completely ridiculous, but I can't figure out how to get the machine out of the plastic base. I tried prying the sides apart with a putty knife to see how it is fastened, and it seems to have multiple spikey tabs that connect the machine to the base.  It seems like it will break before releasing. There must be be an easy way to separate the two without damaging the base, but I can't see what it might be. 

Plus, the plug receptacle for the foot pedal seems to be part of the case. ??? I was hoping that if I like the machine, I could put it in one of my surplus tables, but I'm not sure how that is going to work with that plug setup. The plug has gooey green corrosion. Any tips for how to clean the receptacle part of the plug?

Any words of wisdom would be much appreciated!

Thanks,
Kelly in PA
403front.jpg  403case1.jpg 


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Chaly

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Reply with quote  #2 
Kelly,

Look on the bottom of the case - there are a couple of screws that hold the machine in place - at least on the case I had.

Regarding the plug receptacle -once you get the machine out, you can remove the rubber adapter and put the machine in any cabinet.

I would be more worried about the green stuff you see - I've read this is not good and is the result of old Singer lubricant breaking down and warnings not to plug the machine in until this is all cleaned up. 

See the following for more info:  http://vssmb.blogspot.com/2013/07/a-singer-401a-and-greasy-terminal-prongs.html#more
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pgf

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Reply with quote  #3 
Kelly -- it's a sign.  Turn back now!  Electric machines (well, at least those that aren't black! ;-) ) are simply luring you down the path to an eventual hell surrounded by touchscreens and plastic gears.  Heed the signs!!

HTH,
paul

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ellellbee

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Reply with quote  #4 

Our old Zenith vacuum had that igreen goo in the factory plug. The green oozed out a bit for years. My outlets always had a green tinge to them. 

https://cityelectricians.co.nz/index.php/faq-mobile/3-electrical-faults/64-green-goo-slime-or-exudate

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Aronel

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Reply with quote  #5 
You will love your 403.  I love mine and it is my go to machine.  I don't have an original manual, but I have a copy.  Sorry, no help with removal from base.  
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Cecilia

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Reply with quote  #6 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pgf
Kelly -- it's a sign.  Turn back now!  Electric machines (well, at least those that aren't black! ;-) ) are simply luring you down the path to an eventual hell surrounded by touchscreens and plastic gears.  Heed the signs!!

HTH,
paul


Oh, Paul, haven’t you yet discovered the joy that green sewing machines and blue sewing massive can bring? And let’s not even talk about pink!!! :-)

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Saving the World... One Sewing Machine at a Time!
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kndpakes

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Reply with quote  #7 
Chaly,  thank you for the info about the green goo! It is just lucky I didn't bring it home and plug it in as I normally would. According the the blog, that might have been exciting! For some reason I unplugged both plugs and started cleaning it. I was able to clean the plug, and once I got the base pried off and removed the adapter plug, the inner plug was nice and clean. Yay for that, as the referenced blog indicated it would be impossible to adequately clean that part. 

I noticed round greasy spots on the bed and looked at the foot pedal that had been stored there. All 4 feet had grease coming out of them. I was afraid the whole innnards were going to be coated with the green goo, but when I opened it, the interior was clean and dry. For some reason, all 4 rubber feet were full of a greasy substance. I have no idea why someone would do that. It did not seem to be melting or deterioration of the feet as they look intact and are feel like normal pliable rubber feet.

Paul, never fear, my heart will always be with my old black machines! This one does seem pretty nice, though, for an electric. [wink] 

I have it all cleaned and loosened up and it runs smoothly, sounds great and makes a nice stitch. The only problem I see is that it seems like the zig zag is not as wide as it should be. Then I ran a line of stitching with all of the cams and the patterns don't look exactly like they should. Banner looks just like arrow, for example. It is most obvious on the multi stitch zig zag cam, where it zigs out nicely in one direction and the other side is almost straight. So, this means something is stuck somewhere in the linkages, I'm guessing? Any tips on how to figure that one out?

zigzagmulti.jpg

Thanks,
Kelly in PA

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Chaly

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Reply with quote  #8 
Kelly,

Nice progress!  I have not ever used a 403 but I loved my 401 and my Rocketeer is one of my machines that I will never part with.  They are very practical and good all purpose machines with the amazing ability to do double needle stitching with two separate needles (not having to use those expensive twin needles) - one can closely mimic a coverstitch machine (thousands of dollars for these) with the double needle stitching.  You can also do a neat overcast with cam #22 and the overcast foot.  And the decorative stitches are really fun.

The zigzag should be 4 mm wide - if not then something is probably stuck - like the swing mechanism for the zigzag.  I would start with this.  I've learned that it sometimes takes a while to get everything loosened up to perfection - keep cleaning, oiling, and moving each part.  I can't imagine anything is broken - likely just still old oil gumming things up.
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kndpakes

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Reply with quote  #9 
Success! I measured the stitch width and it was running about 2.5mm. I looked at all the things that move to make the zigzag while it was sewing and could not figure out where it was not moving as far as it should. I kept oiling places I had oiled before and running it fast. Then I started moving the stitch width lever back and forth while it was running fast, and that did the trick. I still can't figure out what the problem was, because the part that the stitch length control lever moves seems to be going to the same place it did before, but I now have the full 4 mm stitch width. Whoop whoop! The stitches all look like the cams now.


stitchesfull.jpg

Thanks for all the help!

Aronel, I think I will like this machine, too! I'm going to take it for a spin tomorrow sewing some quilt blocks. 

Kelly 

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kndpakes

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Reply with quote  #10 
ellellbee,

Thanks for the link to the green goo information! I will try to remember to keep it unplugged so I can keep an eye on more seeping out. It is yucky stuff. Now I wonder if that is what the sticky, greasy stuff was in the rubber feet on the foot pedal. 

Kelly
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Chaly

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Reply with quote  #11 
Kelly - Great job in sorting it all out.  Looks like the stitching is working perfectly now.  Have fun!
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