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  #16 (permalink)  
Old 04-04-2011, 05:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bentwings
Haha that's funny. I get that all the time with my TIG welding. " It's only a small repair......won't cost much." Or "I gotta small miss while cruising...think you can fix it.".....obviously free after spending all afternoon on a problem that isn't there inthe first place. My dad was in marketing and sales all his life and he told me friends and relatives are your worst customers.

I just got sucked in building and $800 dry sump tank for about half that. It's going to be a loser but the guy is a nice guy and I'll get it back when I bring my dually in to his store for oil changes. (They are not fun)

The headliner thing is interesting. That will be my first real project after I get some time on this thing. I have already made all the roof bows twice out of oak.
Oh yeah - that guy with the headliner (that he wanted to pay $20 for) had a little Geo Prizm with the hard type headliner in it, so it would have been an easy job. He was all kinds of offended when I quoted him $100 - and I know that the cheapest upholstery shop in town charges $125 and up. He got all indignant and said something to the effect of; "It's just some cloth and some thread, for God's sake!" I asked him what he did for a living, and he said, "I'm a carpenter," like I was supposed to be really impressed all of a sudden. My reply was that; "Well, houses are just a few boards and some nails..."

He stomped off in a huff - oh well... Don't get me wrong - I'm not out to antagonize potential customers. I'm normally a very courteous guy. I've also condensed about a 1/2 hour long conversation to just give the highlights.

Take a look at Dan's profile, and you'll find a link to his homepage. He's done some gorgeous work, and I'm sure he could give you some fantastic advice for your headliner. I haven't faced the "plastic body with no headliner - or a way to even mount it" challenge yet, so I'm no help at all. I know that day will come, but it hasn't come yet.

Good luck, and remember that we LOVE pictures!

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Old 04-04-2011, 06:23 PM
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I'm soaking all this up like a sponge as I'm really a greenhorn. Thanks again for the advice.

I have only a few early pictures. I just got a new lap top so I'll try and download from the camera then I can post here. I'm going to re install everything next week so I will take more detailed shots then.

Dusty...that a great come back haha

Coode,,, rest assured I will practice a lot. I've already read all of the 'stickys' at the start of the interior section. What a great series. Just like a book. Much thanks to Dan.

I convinced my wife that I really need this unit in the spare room so hopefully it doesn't make too much noise.
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Old 04-04-2011, 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by DanTwoLakes
Why is everyone so afraid of actually learning how to use the sewing machine? When I first learned, there were no such things as servo motors so you either learned to slip the clutch motor or you couldn't sew with the machine.

Theoretically, a rheostatically controlled motor would work on a sewing machine because the slower you go, the more torque is produced. In practice, however it would not be very economical to do it that way. The motor would need to be a DC motor, because running an AC motor at slow speeds all the time would burn the motor up because it couldn't cool itself. They don't use DC motors because they are way more expensive than AC motors. The reason they used AC clutch motors on them in the first place is because, for a long time, it was the best and also the cheapest way to power the machine. Anyone who is any good at sewing can make a clutch motor do anything a servo can. The reason I switched to servos is because I hated listening to the sewing machine run when I wasn't pressing on the foot pedal, and the savings in electricity were so great.

The easiest way to slow down a sewing machine is to put a very small pulley on the motor, which will cut top speed by at least 1/2. If you also use a servo motor you can get the motor to absolutely creep. The servo is a constant torque device, so it has low end torque and is the simplest, and cheapest, way to get it all in one package.

You also need to practice with the machine. They don't just give you a driver's license when you're 16, you need driver's ed and experience too, just like anything else that is a learned skill.
I don't think being afraid to learn has anything to do with a machine being unsuitable for what you want to do. He wanted to sew leather, chaps and such and the cost of crappy work to learn how to control the machine just isn't an option.
I'm not familiar with bigger machines bit I know my 300-400-500 series Singers have no torque at very low speeds, that's what I was basing my comment on.
I want a heavy duty machine to sew some leather and maybe an occasional tarp or seat cover. I don't want to learn how to do it on a high production machine, that's why I have been thinking of how to slow one down. The motor pulley is already pretty small on many of them and I did the math, you can't go small enough to get the machine slow enough to stitch technical stuff on leather.
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Old 04-04-2011, 10:09 PM
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You don't have to practice on expensive leather when some cheap vinyl will give you the same experience. A home type sewing machine will easily sew leather chaps and just barely creeps along. My point is, and always was, that no matter what happens, at some point the person doing the work has to develop skills to operate the machine, and no amount of slowing the machine down will be a substitute for running the machine and getting comfortable with running it.

Industrial sewing machines were designed for high speed (3000 stitches per minute) production work, so it's not reasonable to expect to be able to slow them down to a crawl. That's why servo motors are so great. You can slow the machine down to a more manageable speed while you learn and then turn the speed up as you become more comfortable with the machine.
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Old 04-04-2011, 11:56 PM
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Funny you should mention vinyl... I was on the way home tonight thinking about this sewing stuff. I was at the fabric store a week ago and saw some vinyl and it wasn't very expensive and I thought it would be great to practice on. so it will be.

Now that you have tossed this speed thing out I think I will forego the pulley for now.

When I first started TIG welding I went to a guy who was the king garu. I asked him if he would help me learn to TIG weld. He had me cut up some .060 sheet (thin stuff and not the easiest to weld) then told me to crawl under the weld table and clamp it up under it and weld it together. Then I was to show him the results. He said he had never seen a chicken poop inverted but he thought it might look like my welds. He never had me sit down at the table and get comfortable. I had to operate left handed, right handed, use the pedal right or left foot, elbows, knees, laying on a creeper and just about every position possible. I remember it wasn't even fun but I did learn.

In school up on the Iron range in early metal classes we just clamped a chunk of steel or aluminum in the chuck or vise and had at it with the machine. Make chips and don't bust the tooling. Later we made real parts.

So I'm going to just use the machine as designed and learn to use it properly. When the time comes that the servo motor is needed for the project then I'll convert to it.
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Old 04-05-2011, 04:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanTwoLakes
You don't have to practice on expensive leather when some cheap vinyl will give you the same experience. A home type sewing machine will easily sew leather chaps and just barely creeps along. My point is, and always was, that no matter what happens, at some point the person doing the work has to develop skills to operate the machine, and no amount of slowing the machine down will be a substitute for running the machine and getting comfortable with running it.

Industrial sewing machines were designed for high speed (3000 stitches per minute) production work, so it's not reasonable to expect to be able to slow them down to a crawl. That's why servo motors are so great. You can slow the machine down to a more manageable speed while you learn and then turn the speed up as you become more comfortable with the machine.
Well, he bought the machine online (mistake, we all make them) and was told it would do what he wanted. It was unsuitable for the task and returning it was not economically feasible. I have been in commercial leather shops and they have machines designed to do chaps and such. I'm not talking about harness stichers like a #1 Landis but machines made to sew chaps, saddle bags and such. They don't run anywhere near 3000 spm. You could be correct that the industrial machines in question weren't meant to work properly at slow speeds. I think most hobbyists would be a lot better suited with a machine that runs way slower than 3000 spm. That is the point I'm trying to make, not to argue about how we should learn to be proficient on something that isn't ideally suited to the task we need it to perform.
I sew garmet/upolstery leather on my 500 Singer and it does not have any power real slow, I have to help the wheel a little by hand if I want to creep. Even though most ebay sellers call the 401/500 industrial strength machines, they are not. They probably are some of the toughest home machines ever made but not even close to a machine to make heavy leather chaps.
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  #22 (permalink)  
Old 04-05-2011, 05:16 AM
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They may be industrial machines designed for sewing clothing that do not have the power to sew heavier things.
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Old 06-03-2011, 11:20 AM
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need slow slow slow

You know some times free don't work out to be?; I was given a old sewing machine that had not run for over 20 years about 4 months ago,I rewired it,cleaned,oiled,timed,adjust by the book,got new neeles and been playing nearly every day ,I'm not much better off then day after getting it up and sewing two days after getting it. Speed is hell.
I love Dan's input and can tell he really know his stuff,but ture slow for me is the trick I still don't have on a ind.440-c, even after mod to 1in. pulley ID on motor and added just over extra 12in. to clutch arm going to pedal,but after lots trying still can't get ture control,way too fast.
I need a speedcontrolible servomotor thats $ 179 that I don't have $ right now for,or fine a used cheep machine that has that type of control.
This old thing dose a great strait long line in like 1/1000000000 of a sec.
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Old 06-03-2011, 02:59 PM
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slow very slow

A trick I've been using a little is to turn on motor breffly so it dose not get to full rpm,and turn off then sew tell it stops,this gives a little better control.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dana Barlow
You know some times free don't work out to be?; I was given a old sewing machine that had not run for over 20 years about 4 months ago,I rewired it,cleaned,oiled,timed,adjust by the book,got new neeles and been playing nearly every day ,I'm not much better off then day after getting it up and sewing two days after getting it. Speed is hell.
I love Dan's input and can tell he really know his stuff,but ture slow for me is the trick I still don't have on a ind.440-c, even after mod to 1in. pulley ID on motor and added just over extra 12in. to clutch arm going to pedal,but after lots trying still can't get ture control,way too fast.
I need a speedcontrolible servomotor thats $ 179 that I don't have $ right now for,or fine a used cheep machine that has that type of control.
This old thing dose a great strait long line in like 1/1000000000 of a sec.
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Old 06-05-2011, 03:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dana Barlow
even after mod to 1in. pulley ID on motor and added just over extra 12in. to clutch arm going to pedal,but after lots trying still can't get ture control,way too fast.
I did the same thing without the pulley, but took it a step further. I tightened the clutched arm pivot spring all the way down so that the pedal/clutch arm would not be so loose. Then I adjusted the clutch return spring all the way in until the motor stalled then backed it out until the motor did not drag on the clutch. Viola, total control of the machine. Fast when I want it, nice slow starts to keep everything straight. I lucked out.

FYI. I have no idea why it works, but it does. You would think that the clutch being so close would make it jump. All I can think of is that by stalling the motor out I varnished the face of the clutch so that it doesn't catch and take off as easily. ????? IDK, But it works for me.....
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Old 06-06-2011, 11:33 AM
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Yard Sale find $5

I been really feed up with speed on the Columlia 440-2 even after all my mod's.
So going by a local yard sale the other day I pick up for $5; old 1970's Kenmore 158-14101 zig zag in a case but not running and only some parts,only a strait foot nothing other then that,no zig zag,no piping/ some parts to find I guess
Just to see I blow the $5 on it,after all it turns out pritty good,I cleaned for a few hr.s ,oiled,fixed foot speedpedal and this thing sews great =4 layers of vinyl like it was one and vary good speedcontrol ,I can go around corners just fine now.
I never thought to even try what looks like a housewife looking sewing machine would do the job on vinyl,maybe most will not,but this old one has 1.2 watt motor vs many types have 1 watt or less.
I still love all the input I got from DanTowlakes and other,so thats much for that.
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Old 06-06-2011, 12:37 PM
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Any home sewing machine will sew through 4 or 5 single layers of just about anything. What they won't do is sew two layers of sew foam and two layers of fabric together. Why? Because the home machine is only drop feed, and it will not let you put that much thickness under its foot, which makes it worthless for sewing auto upholstery. An industrial machine is compound feed and will let you put 1/2" under the foot. If you're planning on doing anything more than sewing a simple bench seat cover, the home machine won't do it.
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Old 06-06-2011, 01:15 PM
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Dan,I'm missing something I guess,thanks for input.
The foot gap on this old Kenmore dose go up 1/2in. open when I push the lever all up,it dose not have under table control or even a table for that matter. If I only move the foot lift lever to it's first arm click then it's only 1/4in. open.
Thinking that i'll need to make a table or use my 440-2 table to hold Kenmore in place,and for sure there is less room under machine body,so harder to pass stuff through.
Not planning on using it for lots of work,just interior in my son rod and my own.
I'm going to run into some unseen prob ?
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Old 06-06-2011, 06:15 PM
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All you need to know is that to do auto upholstery, your Kenmore home sewing machine will not do everything you need to be able to do. If it could, don't you think I would be using one to save money? I do this for a living, and trying to do auto upholstery with a home sewing machine does not work, it's as simple as that. You can use whatever you want to do your interior and believe whatever you want about the abilities of your $5.00 sewing machine, but I've been doing this for 38 years and I will guarantee you it will not be able to do all it needs to do to complete anything but the most basic sewing in a car interior.

To all of you: Slowing down an industrial sewing machine so that it barely moves, no matter how you do it, because you think it's a substitute for learning how to operate the machine correctly is a waste of time. No matter how slow you go, and that includes turning the hand wheel stitch by stitch, it will not give you the tiniest amount of expertise with any sewing machine, and especially an industrial sewing machine. If you think you can learn in 2 days what it has taken me a lifetime to learn, you are sadly mistaken. When you first started driving a car did they slow the engine down so the car would only go 1/2 mile an hour? No, because that wouldn't help you learn to drive in the real world at all, would it?
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Old 06-06-2011, 08:09 PM
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Thanks Dan,I'm sure your right from your years of back ground you have.
The input really dose helps hobbieist like my self ,not spend too much time playing with the wrong stuff for too long.
For now I have both types of sewing machines,so it maybe I'll mix and match the work as I learn more and toss the $5 one at some point.
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