A Timeline History of the Singer Featherweight Needle Plate
The Featherweight Needle Throat plate is a valuable piece made with extreme precision. It may seem like just a stationary part, but it must be able to allow the needle to pass through smoothly, the feed dogs to move without rubbing, and the thread to be pulled up through a tight slot. It must be a polished nice looking part, but also a well-crafted tool. Singer had a total of seven throat plates for the Featherweight, and below you can see which throat plates went to which machines.
The first three plates that are shown all have the same plate surface, but the positioning bracket is different on each one.
The first needle plate configuration was issued on only about the first 200 Featherweights, and the bracket is noticeably different than all other needle plates.
The next stitch plate had the same plate surface and part number, but the positioning bracket was very different from the first one. This change most likely occurred because the first style bracket springs were not adjustable.
The next throat plate would be considered the most common, and it varies just slightly from the one prior. You will notice that there are no indentations near the front of the positioning block like there was in the throat plate before this one.
221 Needle Throat Plates #4 and #5
The next two plates were the graduated ones from 1952-1969.
This plate is the reflective graduated throat plate used on most black and tan 221, 221J and 221K Featherweights from 1952-1962.
This last 221 Plate would have been the one included with white Featherweights. You will notice the difference in the design of the markings and the non-glare finish.
222K Throat Plates 1953-1961
Singer had two 222K throat plates. Both were graduated, but similar to the 221 - one was reflective chrome, and one was the non-glare style. With these two plates, there was not a lot of continuity in determining which plates went with what years. The reflective one is by far the most common and has been seen in every year of 222 production. The non-glare plate would show up on some 222 Featherweights during the later years of production (1959-1961).
The 221 plates were interchangeable with all 221 models from any year, and the 222 plates would also fit on any 222. We do carry the originals here; they are hard to find item, so if they are out of stock, feel free to check back later.
I also want to say thank you to the members of the Singer Featherweight 221 and 222 Sewing Machines Facebook group for their help in dating the changes that were made to the 222 throat plate.