Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Vintage Sewing Machine - Brother Galaxie 221A - gutsy

I don't normally deal with these modern machines (post 1935), but I couldn't resist this little Brother.  

The Brother Galaxie 221A has a stitch that is in the shape of a goose!  Um, yes!  That's me!  The sewing machine loves me!  It just needs my help to reach it's full potential.

The moment I got it home, I started taking it all apart, only later did I think to get my camera out.  oh well, I'll take a photo of the finished machine at the end once it's all polished up.

This particular machine was owned and used by the school board for many a year.  After they were finished with it, it passed through the hands of a couple of owners.  It looks like the electrics were re-wired within the last ten years.  

A couple of problems with this machine, the worst being the HUGE amount of lint and dust in it.  Second problem was much easier to fix.  The wiring for the light and the motor were switched, so when you plug it in, the motor goes at full speed. 

The final problem is not so easy.  The timing is off.  Basically, when you do a zig-zag stitch, the needle should move from side to side.  The needle should move from side to side at the top of the stitch, but instead, on this machine it moves at the bottom (or just about the bottom).  This is not good.  

Not sure how to fix the timing, thus all these photos of the sewing machine's guts.  Experts, here's your time to shine.

No, I'm not going to take it into the sewing machine repair shop.  Half the fun is learning how to fix it myself and I have enough machines already, I don't really need another one even if it has geese shape stitches.  

As for manuals, I haven't found one yet.  Yarnhog has the best information about this machine anywhere in google-land.  Here is a threading diagram from a sight that will gladly sell you a manual.  


Josiane said...

Good luck with the challenges posed by this machine! How fun that you'll be rewarded with a goose-shaped stitch once you've fixed it!

OffTheMap13 said...

So any luck with this? I just got one myself and have yet to fire it up!javascript:void(0)

OffTheMap13 said...

So any luck with this? I just got one myself and have yet to fire it up!javascript:void(0)

Anonymous said...

I'm interested in what you found out about this machine. I'm working on one for the local resale shop. Seems like a nice little machine, but the flywheel wobbles like crazy when sewing (doesn't do it at all when winding a bobbin). Any ideas?

robbie (www.robbiesews.blogspot.com)

Tammi said...

Hi!! Timing isn't very hard, just take your time (sorry for the pun) and go slow.

The "best" way I've found is to remove whatever bottom panels you must to get to the gears that drive the hook - under the bobbin case, or behind it. This one's based on a class 15 bobbin, so it will be a little different than the ones I've timed, but essentially, you're going to disengage the gears that turn the hook in time with the needle.

You'll rotate the the hook so that it's coming around behind the needle -just- after the needle starts its upward swing. I've read 3/32" as a guide line, it makes sense.

Then once it's there, re-mesh the hook gears, tighten things up and test sew. It may take a couple of tries to get it perfect, but you can do it. If it's not quite picking the thread up, check to see if the hook is ahead or behind where the needle is offering it to the hook.

If it's just stitching poorly, you're probably really close, and need to look at the timing again carefully. My first time around, (geez, there's that bad pun again!) I timed the machine 5 times. The first time I got it close. The second, I knocked it out, oops. The third and fourth times I was so close it was aggravating. But on the 5th time, it was perfect.

You can do this. I know you can. :)

Geez that captcha is hard to read, and I -am- a human.

Northern Transplant said...

I just got a Brother Galaxie 221 in as a donation here at Busy Hands of Michiana (not-for-profit)agency that makes items for those in need. The machine is yellow, as the one in the photo. My issue is one of it not moving fabric when under tension. The feet seem to move in the proper manner. They raise above bed and have the back t forward movement. I can pull the fabric slowly forward and obtain stiches in the fabric.

Northern Transplant said...

Here is continuation on prior notation. I cleaned presser feet, and as noted tried different tension settings. The machine runs very smoothly and shifts through the various stich patterns.
I am using zipzag 8 with no width
to straight stitch, or attempt to.
Hook timing seems to be okay since I can actually create stiches by pulling fabic along instead it feeding through. Guess I will go tthrough all generic basic timings aand see if I mis-read one set up.

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