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Forum > Sewing Machines > Used machines ( Moderated by Sharon1952, EleanorSews)

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Used machines
Buying on ebay
knitstitcher
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knitstitcher  Friend of PR
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North Carolina USA
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Date: 2/20/13 5:57 PM

I often look to see what's for sale on ebay....often looking for a gem in the rough. I know its a huge risk buying a machine like this but i just can't help myself when I see something for a reasonable price. Most times the seller will show a picture of the back of the machine with the serial umber, model number, and a bunch of other letters and numbers. Is there some "secret" code in all those numbers and letters that will tell me the age or year of the machine? Specifically berninas and babylocks. (These are not vintage machines)

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Lorri
Bernina Artista 730,Babylock Journey, Babylock Evolution, Singer 201-2

1975Jumby
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1975Jumby
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In reply to knitstitcher <<


Date: 2/20/13 7:55 PM

I'm like you.....love to troll around on eBay and see what's out there and possibly looking for a good deal. I've purchased machines before on eBay and have had good luck. However, these have been vintage Kenmore's or Singer's that are mechanical and relatively easy to upkeep. So I know what questions to ask and honestly, I've never spent more than $100 on these. But I haven't bought any type of newer computerized type of machine, and I'm not sure if I have the guts to! When it comes to computer circuitry and all that, I just don't know if I want to take my chances. I'd rather spend my money at my dealer for these types of machines knowing I have support and a warranty.

For instance, I'm considering the Babylock Symphony (maybe Crescendo) and have see quite a few go on eBay for about $1000-$1200. My dealer sells the Symphony for about $1995 or so and I'm sure I could get a little break even with that. So, would I rather buy a brand new machine in the box with a warranty for $600 or $700 more? Absolutely! I just think when it gets into the $1500 and up range on eBay, I get a bit nervous. You never know with shipping and how hard the machine has been used. It's tempting, but I don't think I'd go for it.

As for the codes on the machine, there might be a way to find out when that particular model was manufactured. But I don't know the "formula" for that. I know Singer has a website where you can put a machine's serial number in and find out when it was produced.

-- Edited on 2/20/13 7:55 PM --

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Babylock Ellisimo Gold
Babylock Enlighten
Kenmore 1914
Kenmore 1814

beauturbo
beauturbo
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California USA
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Date: 2/21/13 7:02 AM

On cars, often parts of the vin #'s actually do tell you stuff, like which factory in what state, it came out of and other stuff. Serial #'s on sewing machines, I think not so much like that. Unless you actually worked in those factories. Unless it was something really old and someone was tracking those #'s history wise for some reason. So I would ignore serial #'s there. But a model # means something. As just different models where made at different times and years. Maybe go find the owners manual by model # instead and see if a date on it, or go find advertising for when it was new out of some magazine, or just ask some Babylock or Bernina place if they remember what year it came out?

When things are not all that old, and used, I'm not sure what difference it would even make on what year it was though, as that does not tell you much about how someone sewed on it, or not or how treated it at all.

quiltingwolf
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Date: 2/21/13 7:25 AM

I look at ebay at much as I can afford to lose. That being said I brought 4 machines off of ebay and decent transaction each time. Now I was buying vintage machines all for under $100. As with Vintage machines not a lot could be wrong with them that couldn't be fix fairly inexpensively. Not like a computer board or anything.

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quiltingwolf.blogspot.com

AngieRose

AngieRose  Friend of PR
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In reply to knitstitcher <<


Date: 2/22/13 6:18 PM

I like to browse on eBay under "vintage sewing machines". This past week I became obsessed with buying a Mocha or Tan Singer Featherweight 221. But, I really look for good descriptions and those photos that enlarge or magnify the areas of the machines and cases. I want all the nitty-gritty details. I almost bought the Singer Featherweight, but upon further questioning of the seller it seems they forgot to include information about nicks and scratches on the machine. So, I canceled buying it. Still looking for that almost perfect mocha tan little Featherweight. (sigh) The more pictures and information a seller offers, the more comfortable I feel. I'm also shocked at the dirty (literally filthy) vintage sewing machines that are offered with high starting bids. I'm finding it's estate seller dealers that usually have them for sale. I don't even consider buying one of those machines. Geesh, the least they could do is dust them off with a damp cloth before taking pictures.

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AngieRose, who love sewing, machine embroidery and quilting. 2008 Babylock Ellisimo, 2013 Brother DreamWeaver VQ3000, Bernina 1090, Singer Featherweight & 2009 Prodigy Quilter
http://timberhillthreads.blogspot.com

zanylady
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zanylady  Friend of PR
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Date: 2/24/13 6:39 PM

If the serial number is on a Singer, you can go to the Singer website to find out when it was made, and sometimes where.

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