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Forum > Sewing Machines > Question for Vintage enthusiasts: Knee Lever or Foot controller? ( Moderated by Sharon1952, EleanorSews)

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Question for Vintage enthusiasts: Knee Lever or Foot controller?
Trying to decide how to go on my new 301
jzygail
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jzygail  Friend of PR
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Date: 4/20/13 3:30 AM

In the Machine Finds thread, I talked about a new 301 in a No. 65 cabinet that I got this week (new, as in I just got it). The set up is complete--attachments, zigzagger, buttonholer and even an extra set of templates beyond the basic supply for the buttonholer. The only issue is that the cord on the button controller is completely shot--looks like it got caught in a door or something else that chewed/crushed the cord in 3 different places.

So I either have to fix that, or replace it. If I replaceit, I'll have to find another button controller in good condition to use the knee lever, which would be MY preference, but I don't know if I'm going to keep the set up or sell it. And if I sell it, I don't know if enough people would prefer the knee level enough to worry about replacing the button controller or if I should just get a modern electronic foot controller.

So, what say you all? Knee lever controller or foot controller? Which makes more sense?

NM gal
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Date: 4/20/13 4:16 AM

Look at Sew Classic's website for a foot controller. www.sew-classic.com/

Miss Fairchild
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In reply to jzygail <<


Date: 4/20/13 8:20 AM

Being the ''proud'' owner of two 301's, I'd like to say I really like this machine. But did you know that the button controllers can catch fire? What happens is (if I understand it correctly) the button controllers have a bar in them that turns the power on and off. Sometimes this ''bar'' gets dirty and sticks, leaving the power on and the ''juice'' flowing, creating heat.

I wanted my machines to be total vintage, right down to the Singer sewing machine needles. But I didn't want a problem on my hands either. So I switched out the old button controller for a modern electronic one on my Black Beauty (the other machine, Karmel, I sold). And surprisingly, the machine now runs faster.

If I had a machine in a cabinet, I'd get the knee lever. It's more comfortable, and I have ankle problems, especially after sewing a long day. I think there's a reason why industrial sewing machines have knee levers.

------
"Play the cards you are dealt, but choose who is sitting at the table"..AARP magazine

SEE MY ETSY SHOP HERE: http://www.etsy.com/shop/AuntMaymesAttic
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jzygail
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jzygail  Friend of PR
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In reply to Miss Fairchild <<


Date: 4/20/13 9:58 AM

Quote: Miss Fairchild
Being the ''proud'' owner of two 301's, I'd like to say I really like this machine. But did you know that the button controllers can catch fire? What happens is (if I understand it correctly) the button controllers have a bar in them that turns the power on and off. Sometimes this ''bar'' gets dirty and sticks, leaving the power on and the ''juice'' flowing, creating heat.



I wanted my machines to be total vintage, right down to the Singer sewing machine needles. But I didn't want a problem on my hands either. So I switched out the old button controller for a modern electronic one on my Black Beauty (the other machine, Karmel, I sold). And surprisingly, the machine now runs faster.



If I had a machine in a cabinet, I'd get the knee lever. It's more comfortable, and I have ankle problems, especially after sewing a long day. I think there's a reason why industrial sewing machines have knee levers.




So can I get an electronic button controller that works in the knee lever bracket?
Renee' S
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Date: 4/20/13 10:45 AM

You can rewire your foot controller, no need to get a whole new one.

------
Bernina 560, Pfaff 7550, Pfaff 1171, Babylock Imagine, Singer 221 & the big girl Gammill Classic

NM gal
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Date: 4/20/13 8:26 PM

There is a whole topic on this at Sew Classic.

reetsi
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Date: 4/21/13 0:07 AM

Hi Jzygail! I found Sew Classic super helpful with my knee/foot controller situation. My sweetie found a Singer 201 in a cabinet with a knee controller. Because he wanted to restore the cabinet, we placed my 201, knee lever and all, on a table in my sewing space. There was really no place to "connect" the knee lever to the fold-up table, so I was hoping to use it as a foot controller. It was a surprise when I realized the cord for the knee controller wasn't even close to reaching the ground. I had to press the controller between my knees if I wanted to sew on it! I felt like I was using a Thigh Master every time I sewed!! And don't get me started on the weird speed fluctuations.

I contacted Jenny at Sew Classic, explained my situation, and she let me know what my options were. Here is one of the links she sent me in case you are interested.

Sew Classic - Replacing Wires on a Controller

If you're not a handy person (and I'm decidedly not), I'm recommend paying the extra $ to have them do the wiring. Set up was a snap! And I was a humanities major!
-- Edited on 4/22/13 1:28 AM --

SandiMacD
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SandiMacD  Friend of PR
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Date: 4/21/13 4:29 PM

Knee lever by far. My adult daughter has my 301 in orig cabinet and that is also fhe only way she uses it- knee controller.

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sewing brings joy and meaning to my life...

Miss Fairchild
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In reply to jzygail <<


Date: 4/22/13 0:06 AM

Quote:
So can I get an electronic button controller that works in the knee lever bracket?
I don't see why not. My mother had a Necchi Super Nova and the foot pedal came out of the cabinet, if you didn't want to operate the knee lever.

------
"Play the cards you are dealt, but choose who is sitting at the table"..AARP magazine

SEE MY ETSY SHOP HERE: http://www.etsy.com/shop/AuntMaymesAttic
My blog: http://auntmaymesattic.wordpress.com/

helenl
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In reply to jzygail <<
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Date: 4/23/13 10:54 AM

When I was a kid (many years ago) my mother had a Fleetwood in a beautiful cabinet. It had the knee lever and I loved that. To this day, I would prefer the knee lever over the foot peddle. Not chasing the peddle all over the floor and I remember it being more controllable. I think the only reason manufacturers have gone to foot controllers is that most machines are not sold with the cabinet. I thought it was so easy to use your knee. If you are going to resell the machine with the cabinet, I would go with the knee lever.

------
VineyardStitch

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