I was very frustrated yesterday at sewing project night as I wasted a bunch of time trying and failing to get two of the home sewing machines to work. Right now we about half a dozen home sewing machines lying around that no one uses anymore because they need repairs.
The Singer Simple has been the one consistently working machine for a while, but I think some cam shaft inside has slipped and the feed dogs go up and down but no longer move back and forth to pull the fabric through. The Singer heavy duty keeps getting it’s top thread stuck in the bobbin, which may be due to a missing bobbin cover.
I hate that the machines are always broken until Tiffany or I fix them. I don’t even use home sewing machines so it just feels like pointless sacrifice to always be fixing them. Since I put signs on the industrial machines about not using them if you don’t know how, and since I’ve been showing up to sewing project night to teach people how to use the machines, the industrial machines have had great up time and are all working. I want to spend most of sewing project night actually sewing and not fixing machines for other people, so I’d like to propose the following:
Some machines like the Singer Simple need to be completely taken apart to be fixed. I’m not interested in doing this because it’s time consuming, and it the machines stay at Noisebridge they’re likely to break again due to being too flimsy for public abuse. But, I’d be happy to tell people they can take the home sewing machines home for free if they can fix them, and they can fix it at sewing project night with my guidance
Other machines don’t have to be taken apart to be fixed, for example, I’d like to try buying a replacement bobbin cover for the Singer Heavy Duty to see if that keeps everything in place so the thread doesn’t get caught. Let’s fix these and put aggressive signage on them like on the industrial machines about not using them if you don’t know how
Going forward, let’s only accept home sewing machine donations that are heavy duty, such as the Singer Heavy Duty or the Janome HD3000. I think regular sewing machines can’t survive Noisebridge and break too easily in ways that are difficult to repair.
What do people think?