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A Concise History and Timeline of The Featherweight Bobbin Winder

Below is a photo of the 8 different bobbin winders that Singer made for the Featherweight.  Each one is unique, and while they are all interchangeable, preserving the originality of your machine with the historically correct winder can be important to the machine's value.


#1 Solid-Wheel Unmarked Bobbin Winder 1933-1936 USA:

The first bobbin winder used on the Featherweight had a solid silver wheel similar to a later bobbin winder, but it has no markings or part numbers on it.  This bobbin winder was used from 1933 into 1936.

#2 Cupped-Wheel Bobbin Winder 1936-1946 USA:

The second bobbin winder that Singer used on the Featherweight had a cupped wheel, and it was used from 1936 through 1946.  

#3A Beveled-Wheel Bobbin Winder 1947-1954 USA and 1947-1959 UK:

This third bobbin winder is the most common and was used in the US as well as on 221 and 222 machines in the UK through about 1959.  The wheel on this one looks similar to the cupped winder, but it has a more beveled shape to it.

#3B Beveled-Wheel Bobbin Winder Black-Oxide Finish 1951-1952 USA:

Technically, this bobbin winder is the same as the one above, but it has an original black-oxide finish instead of chrome.  You can often find this bobbin winder on the USA made Centennial Featherweights.  Click Here to read more about black-oxide finish parts on the Featherweight. 

#4 Solid-Wheel Unmarked 1955-1957 USA:

The fourth wheel has a solid shape similar to the first bobbin winder, but it can be quickly distinguished by Singer's markings and part number.  It was used in the USA from 1955 into 1957.

#5 Black Bakelite Wheel Bobbin Winder 1957 USA and 1959-1961 UK.

This fifth bobbin winder is the first Bakelite wheel bobbin winder that would come on the Featherweights.  On occasion, it can be seen on a USA made Featherweight from 1957, but it is most common with 1959-1961 221K and 222K Featherweights.  It looks very similar to the black-oxide bobbin winder, but looking closer one can tell that the wheel is not metal.

#6 Tan Featherweight Bobbin Winder 1960-1962:

The most unique Featherweight bobbin winder is the one that was used on the tan Featherweights.  It does have a Bakelite wheel like the final black bobbin winder, but it also has a handy thumb-lever to easily lift and lower the bobbin winder to the belt.

#7 White Featherweight Bobbin Winder 1964-1970

The final Featherweight bobbin winder was the one used with the White Featherweights.  It is virtually the same bobbin winder as the tan one, but it doesn't have that handy thumb lever.

The bobbin winder is an important part of the Featherweight, and it can certainly cause headaches if it isn't working properly.  Follow the links below for resolving common issues related to the bobbin winder.

Oiling the bobbin winder

Protecting the bobbin winder in shipment

Preventing the Bobbin Winder from Slipping