Well, this is for Rebecca Grace, who asked about oiling machines. Rebecca, I would have responded to your email, but email has been around so long that it must have needed fixing, because ATT has managed to make it worse (okay, that is not the first phrase I typed there). So, I decided to talk about oiling here.
I oil the hook race on my machines after every bobbin. I learned to do that on the Bernina, and made it a habit. About once a month, I go through all the oiling steps in the owner’s manual. Yes, that’s a lot of spots to oil, but it keeps the machine quiet. If a machine starts to make a noise, I’ll stop and do a full owners manual oiling. That usually takes care of it. And, about once a year, I go through all the oiling and lubricating steps in the service manual. They are usually different, but if you get one for one vintage machine, it’s pretty indicative of most of the others in the same brand line.
Because I have and use so many vintage machines, most machines only get used once or twice a year, so the cleaning isn’t something I sit down and do every January to all the machines. When I take a machine out, I make sure it’s clean and lubricated before I start to use it. Yes, it would be better if I could clean and oil it before I put it away, but I’m usually dashing off to the next project and can’t take time to stop and clean. It’s who I am.
The mistake I made on my mother’s machine was that I did part of the cleaning and lubricating, and then I tried to use the machine before I did the other part. If I’d cleaned and oiled the whole machine at once, I don’t think I’d be trying to decide whether the better bargain is the service manual and the gear, or the gear and the installation instructions, or some combination that includes replacing both gears because I’m pretty sure you practically take one off to replace the other. (And honestly, with that being the hardest decision I’m trying to make right now, I’d say I’m pretty happy)
Yesterday, I needed fabric. I stopped at a store I don’t usually stop in, Hancock Fabrics. I used to love this store, and then I switched my loyalty to JoAnn’s. But, yesterday I stopped in and they were having a big sale. I got 5 yards of fabric for an insanely low price. There were two gay guys working. I don’t think I was wrong to feel very comfortable with that. The store still is not all that much, in my opinion, but the guy that cut my fabric and I had a nice long talk about our projects. He’s a tailor, not a quilter, but was interested in my red/white/blue quilt. He was in the Service and both he and his partner have rwb quilts that were made by girl scouts. He was also amused by my three attempts to put a zipper in a pair of jeans and suggested that from now on, I toss the pattern instructions as soon as I open the envelope.
Okay, so that’s it for me today. Thanks so much for your kind words in response to Syd’s award the other night. I’ve shared them with her.
Yesterday, on the drive to school, just a few minutes after I posted, She said “Want in one hand, spit in the other. See which one fills up the fastest.” That’s not cool. That’s my line. I got it from my Mom and I’m pretty sure she got it from hers. Syd needs to get a lot older before she can use it to discourage me from wanting nice things…and more sewing machines.
She announced last night that she wants to make a quilt for herself this summer. She wants to use Ellie the Elna.
I’m so selfish, I don’t want to loan her my newest machine. But, I will. Because I’m that desperate to get her to sew.
Have a great day.