Monday, 12 November 2012

Burning rubber

On old machines you frequently find that the rubber tyres on the bobbin winders are cracked and brittle with age.  My 1927 Singer 99K was an exception.  This is the state it was in when I got it. For some reason, don't ask me how, the tyre had melted, sticking to everything in its path.  Some of it was sticking to the bobbin winder.

The rest of the rubber had dripped down to the bed of the machine below, settling into a horrible sticky blob, even running off to the right and gumming up the lid of the side compartment.  

Fortunately cleaning it off wasn't as bad as I anticipated.  I pulled off most of it with my fingernails. Now the machine has a new tyre, and there has been no lasting damage to the bobbin winder.

The last traces on the bed of the machine came off after I rubbed undiluted washing-up liquid over it. I am always a bit nervous of damaging the decals, so it is always best to try out on a tiny area first, but there was no harm done here.


  1. oohh my gosh!,= what a beautiful restoration job you have done & thanks again for sharing all your tips on how to look after these fabulous old machines, you are a treasure!

  2. Hello Mo,

    I'm so glad to be able to help people make the most of this machines. This particular 99K has become a real favourite of mine - I use it a lot.


  3. Thank you for specifying _undiluted_ soap. Many people claim they use washing liquid but never specify undiluted. Really pure soap doesn't have water in it.



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