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antique singer sewing machines

Antique Sewing Machines – the Singer 48K

 

singer 48k sewing machine

When it comes to antique sewing machines, a well-known example if the Singer 48K machine.

The 48k machine was only made at Singer’s Kilbowie factory in Clydebank, Scotland between the years 1900 and 1913. According to the company records, at least half a million machines were made, and at the time were priced at £4 12s 6d – roughly £460 in today’s money. It was Singer’s cheapest selling family sewing machine.

The 48K is a transverse shuttle model – the shuttle moves from left to right. Its other features include

  • A hybrid shuttle
  • A self-setting standard 15×1 needle and not the old round shanked, 12×1
  • An upper tension control sited right of the faceplate
  • A shuttle eject mechanism
  • Black hand wheels – this is probably because some countries taxed machinery import with plated parts, as they were thought of as luxury items.

Attractive Antique Sewing Machines

It is a very pretty-looking machine. Singer only decorated the 48K machines with the Ottoman Carnation ornamentation and the Ottoman Carnation with Indian Star decals. Why? The idea is that India was an emerging market at the start of the 20th Century, and the use of the Indian Star sticker was a deliberate attempt to stimulate the market.

What makes the Singer 48K something of a mystery when it comes to antique sewing machines is that it used technology which was outdated at the time. Other Singer models were better machines, and far more up to date. Why produce something like this?

singer 48k sewing machine

The theory goes that the machine was designed to compete with German-made, high-arm (the high arm allows free movement of the material) machines that had dominated the British market for many years.

Designed for Export?

Another theory is that it was intended for export to developing countries, but the majority of advertising materials (and there aren’t that many) relate to Singer 48K machines being sold in the UK. There are also adverts for it in New York and Russia, though!

Nowadays, the Singer 48K is a rare thing, which perhaps gives credence to the idea that 500,000 machines were not made. Some experts on antique sewing machines have disputed this number, claiming that a sewing machine that only shows up every six months on eBay is very rare. The primary production period seems to be 1902-05.

singer 48k sewing machine

It is thought that production of the machine might have stopped for various reasons. Number one that it just wasn’t that great a sewing machine. Another reason might be the start of the First World War and the drop in imports of German goods. There was no longer a need for a machine that competed with the German high-arm sewing machine.

Whatever – the machine is something of a mystery, and that makes it very exciting indeed!

Sewing4Everyone sells refurbished and antique sewing machines. Check out our range to find out more.

 

 

 

antique singer sewing machine

Singer Sewing Machine Company

Since the early 1850s the name singer has gone hand in hand with sewing and sewing machines. Singer is the spirit and at the heart if practical design and creative innovation and it is that which has characterised the company that it is today and will continue to be as Singer develop new products for the world of sewing.

Singer has celebrated many ‘firsts’ in sewing, such as the world’s first ‘zig-zag’ machine, the first electronic machines and the world’s most advanced home sewing and embroidery machines. Through the years Singer has stayed dedicated to helping people express themselves through the craft of sewing.

Singer celebrated the 160th anniversary of Isaac Singer’s patent on the first practical sewing machine in 2011 and this anniversary seemed to mark an official beginning of Singer and its leadership within the industry, a celebration of a great accomplishment. Over the years since they began Singer have retained their leadership in the industry and have continued their commitment to quality, reliability, innovation and service as the years have gone on.

Singer sewing machines are helping people of all ages and all walks of life unleash their creativity by creating unique garments, home furnishings and other items while enjoying the satisfaction that the sewer has made the product themselves.

First Class Reputation!

Singer work hard to create sewing machines and products that make sewing easy. The Singer sewing machine range offers a sewing machine for every kind of user, from those that are new to sewing to those that are advanced in home sewing and embroidery machines. Whatever you sew, whether it is soft furnishings, clothing, embroidery or quilting Singer will have a sewing machine to suit your needs.

Singer have over 100 years experience of trading in domestic and industrial machines and the current Managing Director at Singer if the fourth generation in the same company. The company, Singer take pride in offering an old fashioned, white-glove service; a service that a sewer can only expect from a company that has gone from strength to strength over a century.

Singer is possibly the most famous name in sewing and it has gone through many changes over the years. The Singer brand has stood the test of time and is still going strong. If you’re looking for a high quality original Singer sewing machine with a great value price tag then why not have a look at the range of Singer sewing machines we have available?

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