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Vintage 1900 Model 27 Singer Sewing Machine

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Singer Sewing Machines525 of 565Final find of the day, Vintage Singer Sewing Machine ??My Singer Thrift Store find - what model is she?
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    Posted 10 years ago

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    Hi, I have inherited this vintage singer sewing machine from my grandmother and I am looking to get some information of the value, history and how to find the right buyer for such items. What I have learned thus far is that it is a Model 27, made on January 27th, 1900 in New Jersey. It is one of 25,000 made at that time. I do not know how accurate this information given is so if anyone would be kind enough to help me I would really appreciate it,

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    1. Nancy Salisbury, 10 years ago
      If you got the information from the Singer site it is the correct information on your machine . The value all depends on condition of the machine and the cabinet . Also on how much someone is willing to pay . I bought a machine like this that was in much worst shape just for the refinished treadle cabinet it was in for $200.00 . I put a better collectable machine into the cabinet . Sometimes around here you can find machines like this at auctions for $25.00 or less . It just all depends . The decals on your machine appears to be in great shape which makes it worth more to a collector .
    2. secky, 9 years ago
      Hi I would like to have some close up pictures of all the decals on your machine. If you would do this please send to my email at Your machine looks great and if you don't need the money then put it on a shelf so people can see it cause it is pretty
    3. harleegirl, 6 years ago
      I have the 1887 model shown but mine is in much better condition even the cabinet and all 6 drawers. It has only been used by my grandmother and great grandmother and myself. It is what I learned to sew on. I also have the folding wooden box that had attachments in dated Feb. 19,1883. It is is in working order just needs new belt
    4. Thomas_Raywood, 2 years ago
      Hi, bj77.

      So, having just acquired a cabinet with a Model 27, and being knew to this field of collectibles, my input may be less reliable than I'd hope for? However, there are reasons I think what you have here is an atypical variant.

      According to Wikipedia, the span from needle to pillar on the Model 27/127 is eight inches. My machine matches that but, unlike the 127, contains the lug on the rear of the pillar to take the bobbin winder pulley bracket. This and the 8327 shuttle make certain mine is a 27 rather than a 127 even though the bobbin winder pulley is high (like the 127) rather than low (like the 27 and 28). Again, according to Wikipedia, just prior to the transition from 27 to 127, the 27 was fitted high this way while still retaining the lug for the low.

      Based on your picture, a couple things make me pretty sure your model isn't a "perfect" match for the familiar 27. First, as you can easily confirm, your needle to pillar span is less than eight inches. By consequence, your machine's arm is visibly shorter and thicker than that of the 27/127. Secondly, owing to the shorter arm, the length of your machine's base is may be 12.5" rather than 14.625", while the depth of the base (front to back) may measure 6.5625" rather than 7".

      Here's why I say "may" instead of "will." The corners of the base for my 27, unlike your model, "round off," not only on on the left side but also on the right. The right side of your base comes to points. Also, where the base of my 27 cuts off (ends) just millimeters from the pillar, to which is then added a separate, contiguous plate (also with rounded corners), your base extends well beyond the pillar. Your machine also has a semicircular cutout up front, which mine does not. (The length of my base is 14.625" all aside of that additional plate.)

      Another caveat on this is as follows. It is clear that a great deal of model-specific information has been lost or destroyed. Since my 27 is definitively a later iteration, (as I describe above), I certainly cannot state that there were no earlier 27s which match your machine's specs. Like I say, I know now only bits on the subject. But your machine strikes me as something of a curiosity. I do not understand why its base does not look quite as "finished" as I would expect, nor why it's missing the separate plate between its right edge and the lip if the hatch. These are not criticisms. (I don't know enough to go there. lol.) In fact, who knows that what you have isn't an actual prototype for the finished model, marking the transition from VS-1s to 27s? Could be older than you think. Or maybe it's a VS-3. I dunno. But I think such things are worthy of your consideration.

      As for value? As far as I can tell, there's little equity to these machines or their cabinets. After all, a vast number of these machines were sold, and are so durable that a great many have survived. Replacement parts are probably more costly than the current price ranges of the machines themselves. However, if your machine is indeed at substantial variance from what I'm "intuiting" as the finished models, (What's with those sharp corners?), perhaps it is of greater value to a true collector than would normally be the case. But let me be candid in my views here about this.

      A working machine paired with someone who knows how to use it is certainly a novel and wonderful thing. But even aside of that, these machine-cabinet combinations simply make for a captivating, highly aesthetic piece of furniture or accoutrement in, of course, any compatible setting. So to me, their value rather than being in any monetary "on trade" is instead to be gauged in terms of what another piece of "equally impactful" furniture/accoutrement would cost. I love furniture. I love history. I love art. I love engineering. Little else combines all four. (And I haven't even mentioned wrought iron and brass.)

      As a footnote, let me mention my favorite thing (so far?) about my machine. Though its decals are quite perfect (also Sphinx), there in the middle of the back of the arm there's one spot nearly an inch wide up top where some of that decal is worn completely off. I surmise this to be the result of many years of having that arm grabbed by the left hand of a woman, wearing a wedding ring, as she operated the stiff balance wheel with her right hand. I find this sweet, touching, and also commanding of respect. (Your model appears to be a hand crank rather than treadle, but does have the older "spoked" balance wheel rather than the solid one.) Since your machine is a family heirloom, its non-monetary appeal must be substantial, especially if granny ever left you in stitches.

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