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Article: Restore Along Part 4: Preparing to Separate the Hull

Restore Along Part 4: Preparing to Separate the Hull


various parts from Singer Featherweight 221 very dirtySinger Featherweight 221 badge and base

First, we would like to thank you all for joining us for another installation of Tulip's restoration! It has been such a fun project to follow along with Julia as she takes the tedious steps of the restoration. If you are joining us, you can catch up on the progress on our previous Restore Along Blogs:

Restore Along Part 1: Introduction of Julia & "Tulip"

Restore Along Part 2: Stripping Down Tulip

Restore Along Part 3: The History of Tulip

Julia's biggest hurdle of the day is getting the upper and lower body of the Featherweight apart. Julia attempts to free the base and neck of the machine from the two pins that hold them together, but they are not releasing the machine hull. While Julia contemplates the best way to separate the machine hull, she is taking some time to clean the bobbin winder and feed dog rocker arm pins. 

Singer Featherweight 221 underside

Notice the location of the pins on the underside of Tulip. These are the pins that hold the column to the base. Julia contemplates using hard plastic shims to remove the pins. 

space between top and bottom on Singer Featherweight 221

Julia is sliding a piece of paper between the upper and lower portion of the body.

As we continue with the Restore Along journey, it is beneficial to reference the Schoolhouse chart to see the detailed expanded view and parts for the Singer Featherweight 221. You can view the free chart here

Singer Featherweight 221 space between head and base

Julia demonstrates the separation between the upper and lower portion of the body. As you can see, there is a slight separation, but she was not able to altogether remove the column from the base yet.

As Julia has the machine turned on its back to see the pins, she can also clearly see the badge rivets.  Julia knows that the thin metal badges are quite delicate, so she is nervous about getting these out.

While Julia contemplates how to separate the machine hull, the rocker arm pins and screws are cleaning in the baking soda and water mixture, they then are off to the ultrasonic cleaner. The combination Julia uses in the ultrasonic cleaner is a bit of dish detergent and heated water. After the parts dry, they get wiped down with sewing machine oil. (Click here to watch our "Cleaning and Polishing"  video tutorial where we show the cleaning benefits of an ultrasonic cleaner.)

Singer Featherweight 221 rocker arm pins
The "before" of the rocker arm pins.
Singer Featherweight 221 Rocker Arm Pins
The rocker arm pins after a baking soda and water mixture cleaning - ready for the ultrasonic cleaner.
Singer Featherweight 221 Rocker Arm pins in ultrasonic cleaner
Singer Featherweight 221 rocker arm pins and extra parts after being cleaned in ultrasonic cleaner
Rocker arm pins and extra parts cleaned in the ultrasonic cleaner.

(Notice the bobbin winder in the ultrasonic cleaner: The ultrasonic cleaner can and often does damage the finish of painted parts.  However, Julia is repainting Tulip, so preserving the original paint on the bobbin winder arm is not a concern.)

 Thank you all for joining us in Part 4 of the Restore Along! We will see you next week on Wednesday as Julia successfully separates the Featherweight hull!

Singer Featherweight 221 named Tulips, end of part 4


Next: Restore Along Part 5 ~ The Head & the Base