Posted in Vintage Sewing Machine

My First Kenmore

DSCF6209Isn’t she pretty?  I picked her up for free from a Craigslist advertisement!  This is a Kenmore 158.521, and I’m learning a lot about her.

First…..she is DANG heavy!!  How do I know?  Well, she came with a cabinet.  A very nice cabinet.  But DSCF6202the previous owners removed the machine from the cabinet in order to facilitate transportation, and now I can’t get her re-mounted back into the cabinet.

DSCF6205See these tiny little pegs in the back slots?  They are what I’m supposed to put this machine onto, using the little holes in the back of the machine, and then tighten down the set screws.  Sounds easy enough, right?  Well, we’ve done that, and every time I rotate the head back into position either the machine moves and pops off the left side post (even after tightening the screw) or the mounting mechanism moves in its natural arc and when it DSCF6214stops, the back of the sewing machine doesn’t lie flush with the table.  All the while, either my DH or I are hanging onto the machine to make sure it doesn’t fall and smash someone’s toe!

I’ve posted my dilemma on a couple of online forums, gotten some good information and suggestions, but as you can see, the machine still isn’t mounted.  So, if anyone knows how to resolve this, please let me know, I’m at my wits end!

DSCF6218The second thing I learned is that this machine’s needle is “left-homed” .  That is, while using a straight stitch, the needle sits at the left side of the throat plate.  You can see what I mean on this photo, where the needle is just coming down through the presser foot on the left.  Using the edge of the presser foot as a guide, this starts the sewist out with a 3/8” seam allowance.  So, this is not the machine for a quilter who uses a 1/4” seam allowance because to do so means the fabric will only ride on one of the feed dogs, which will not feed the fabric through the machine evenly. 

She sure sews a nice stitch, though, and I’m looking forward to trying my hand at some other sewing projects that I’ve put off in favor of my traditional quilting projects.  Yes, in fact, I think I’ll use her to make the jean quilt I’ve been saving up old jeans for, and get those piles used up and cleared out of my sewing room (and garage)!