A discussion about sewing machine work...
My recent experience, I won't name the store, keep in mind I live just outside of Lexington.
Several weeks ago I bought a Singer Spartan at the Goodwill in Louisville. It was in a real nice cabinet. Had all the parts and no obvious damage. No worn out cords, etc. I ran a stitch on it and it sewed beautiful! Looked like it needed a new belt and I needed a bulb for it. Its not classified a "feather weight" but has a vintage appeal to me and was 35.00. I bought it, not sure if that was a bargain or not but figured if nothing else I could use the cabinet as a desk, etc.
Anyway I wanted to take it and get new belt, bulb and tune up. I have a dealer I take my Bernina to but figured for this machine I would just take to a sewing machine dealer/repair shop. They told me 48.00 for tune up and 10.00 for belt and any other parts they replace. I didn't ask what the 48.00 included but figured they would go over machine, oil, balance tension, maybe even clean? a week later I go back and get it and its 74.00, bought some extra bobbins. It was still somewhat dirty but figured thats my job to clean it up.
Take it home and anxious to sew on her. I thread it and it makes a HORRIBLE stitch! Either the tension is messed up or I am threading it wrong? I call the next a.m. and asked if I can bring it back in and have someone show me how to thread it?
I go back (mind you this is easily 30 miles one way from me), go in and have to wait for the technician ( use term lightly here) to see my machine.
This is his job! Working on machines! Yet he has forgotten glasses at home this day. Can not see anyting (knobs, screws, eye of needle, etc) on my machine. He takes a plate of the bobbin cover and proceeds to tell me there is a rusty place and I need to take a cotton ball and rub some oil on it. (would that not have been covered in tune up?). Proceeded to tell me the tension was off and needed adjustment (would that not have been done in tune-up?). Wanted to make sure I knew this was not a "feather weight" and that these machines can be picked up at flea markets for 20.00. Showed me how to thread it then took the spool back off (couldn't he have comped that spool)?
Then he asked the clerk "did you say she was just in here?", she told him yes, just yesterday. Then he had the nerve to tell me "no charge". Like I would pay him to show me how to thread my machine and insult me after I had just written you a check the day before for 74.00?
Lesson learned, first impressions are usually best. I should have asked more questions when I initially dropped off my machine.
Any of you have incidents like this? Am I expecting too much?
It sounds like you did not get the service you expected. I am making a note to myself that when I have my machines serviced to sew stitches on it before I leave the store.
Your machine at the LEAST should have been cleaned, oiled and had the tension adjusted to sew a clean line.
A few years ago, I had this experience with my mom's old machine. I ended up taking it elsewhere to have it cleaned. The second repairman told me it was really dirty. The second one told me a tune-up included cleaning, oiling and if it needed repairs, he would call and tell me. Any rusty spots (it had two) were cleaned and oiled. He also showed me what he had one before I left his shop. He also had me sew on it before I left the shop. The first person I took it to is now out of business. Oh, and one more thing, the first repairman had left a screwdriver inside the machine.
Okay, Rondi. So just exactly what did that "technician" actually do, other than charge you $74.00?? Sounds like he didn't know what he was doing. Heck, you could have cleaned it better than that and at least it would have still sewn a nice seam. Hope you can get it squared away without paying a bunch. Sorry for the bad experience.
Life isn't about how to survive the storm, but how to dance in the rain.
I am so very greatful for our LQS owner who has always serviced my machines with best of care. He works on all makes and models of machines and think I'll go in soon and just thank him for being an honest, trustworthy repair person.
IMHO - There is absolutely no reason to take a non-computerized machine in for service. If you can dust and clean a house, you can dust and clean a sewing machine.
If possible, find a manual online
...and just follow the instructions. Unplug the machine first!
I find that a cheap little children's model paintbrush is great for getting fuzz out of hard to reach places. You need some good machine oil and perhaps some machine grease if there are exposed gears (like with many of the old Singers and the Featherweights).
I suggest you change needles, rethread, check bobbin rewinding if necessary, then take a long piece of doubled over fabric and start stitching, adjusting the tension as needed.
OH! Look to see if there is a broken thread between the tension plates!
Um...you could always call the bank and cancel the check...
Does this hat make my butt look big?
At least call the place and ask just what they did and tell them that you didnt see ANY results and will not be back.
Sorry you had such a bad experience with that man. He is not a repairman or a technician.
I bought a featherweight a few months ago. I cleaned and oiled everything I could and it was running good. I sewed on it one day, all day long. Toward the late afternoon it stopped sewing. I could see a thread in the bobbin area but couldn't get it out and thought that was the problem. A few days later I messed with it again and got the thread out but it still wouldn't sew. I took it into our local repairman and showed them the problem and asked them to clean and check it out while they had it. I forgot to tell them the light bulb was out. When I picked it up a week later they said the bobbin had froze up and they noticed the bulb out and changed it. They left a piece of fabric under the needle where they had sewed on it to make sure it worked right. I was only charged $45. You bet I'll be taking any of my machines to them if I have any problems in the future.
In order to see the rainbow, first you must endure the rain.
[QUOTE]Originally posted by rondiquilts:
I go back and get it and its 74.00
I would ask him just what was done for $74. Usually you get a slip with everything listed. I would get him to go over it again at n/c. since the machine stitched o.k. when you brought it in.
• • • Rondi, that's terrible. I would definitely take it back and make him "FIX" it this time. I would demand an explanation and wouldn't quit until I was satisfied. Good Luck!
Thats awful Rondi.
It would annoy me to be taken for a ride like that. I have a guy here in Columbus that I like. I want to take my "Lucy" (featherweight) in for a "Spa Day" She sews beautifully, but I just know I should get her oiled etc. I read here that she should be oiled after each use, is that true?
my etsy shops
Rondi if it had been me when they said $74 when I picked it up after telling me $48 I would ask for complete explanation...shouldn't the bill/receipt be itemized?...At my dealer back home there is always a piece of fabric there showing they had stitched and it was working...
While here in Midland, MI I won a Featherweight on eBay and was thrilled. When it arrived it sewed and the motor was incredibly quiet...however it made a horrible and loud clicking noise... I found a really neat old gentleman who collects repairs and rebuilds Featherweights and other models. I called him and wondered when I could get it in to him. He told me when....while I was there he began to look at it and telling me a little about the machines told me a tune up and check over was 30 and the new cord was 15...I needed a new cord it was way bad!!! He was considering doing the tune up while I waited but when he took the bottom plate off it was obvious there needed to be more time involved.
a week later I picked it up he had totally cleaned the whole machine, including where glue from tape (1/4" mark maybe) was dried on...there was another spot on the bed he pointed out the first time I was there it also looked like some kind of dried goo...he cleaned that off too. He told me then tension and bobbin tension were fine showed me it sewed AND he also cleaned my case as well as used shoe dye to fix the worn corners as well as a few scratches and spots on the case (these spots were obviously worn/scratched) my case looks brand new!!!! No charge for this...Total $45. I realize this is a guy working from his house so would be somewhat less expensive but IMHO the "technician" should have at least remembered if he worked on the machine the day before...I would ask for complete explanation of charges and why when you took it in it sewed fine and when you picked it up it didn't...then go from there...so sorry this happened. I also wish I could send you Orville to work on your machine!
Britgal, I asked Orville about that he said most people oil their machine too much...if you sew all day long every day then it should be oiled more often but if you tune in to what your machine sounds like and sews like then you can tell by the sound when it needs to be oiled.This message has been edited. Last edited by: luvthosequilts,
"People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within." Elizabeth Kubler-Ross
I am just going to add it up as a lesson learned!
When I picked it up he did have a piece of cloth on there that he had sewn a stitch on that looked good, it was just after I threaded it that I got the poor stitch.
When I took it back in he got it running alright.
And I did get a receipt and it was not itemized.
My main frustration was being insulted like I was the second day I came in the store, why treat customers like that and why would you expect them to return if you did?
I'll never darken their door again.
Thank you all for the suggestions.
I did a quick search. One machine tech state that a machine should be oiled after 8 hours of use. Another site stated once a week.
I've never oiled mine that often.
Does this hat make my butt look big?
I am very lucky, I have a repairman who has been working on Singers since at least the early 70's (when my Mother first bought one from him). He has kept my Singer running beautifully. One of my LQS has worked on my Huskystars, and I trust them. I prefer to have the machines tuned by an expert, just to be sure I have not missed something, since I work on 3 different machines.
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