I don't know what to do with this sewing machine, help me! I got this "New Wheeler" as a wedding gift about 4 and a half years ago, and it has literally been sitting on a shelf since then, collecting dust. I need to decide weather it is worth spending the time and money to get it running, or if I should let it go, and I'm in agony trying to make a decision!
This "New Wheeler" is a bit of a mystery, I can't find any definitive information about it. The style most closely matches the White Vibrating Shuttle III C.1900 model, but there seem to be quite a few differences, too. The back shuttle access plate is stamped with a manufacturer from Cleveland, OH which also seems to point to it being a White sewing machine. Except that White's are supposed to run backwards, and this machine stitches in the same direction as a Singer - turning the handwheel over the top TOWARDS you as you sew.
Although it is a pretty little thing, it doesn't sew very well. I worked for hours yesterday trying to get a good stitch. The tension is a tricky bitch, the screw has no numbers or marks and seems to move too easily. There are also no thread guide between the take-up lever and the needle, and there seems to be a lot of movement in the thread on the side as it sews. Plus, instead of a hook system using bobbins like modern sewing machines, this baby employs a bullet shaped vibrating shuttle to create a stitch. Not as reliable as the modern system, and who knows if I can even find a new shuttle or bobbins?
My plan for this machine (if I decide to keep her) would be to convert it to a hand crank and take it along for crafting events where just a little sewing is needed. However, to get this thing ship-shape, I'd need to do a lot more work and invest in more parts (if I can even find them). So far I only have about 5 hours into this machine and a $10 pack of needles.
So there is my conundrom - do I spend more money and time on a machine that may not sew that great just to have an extra to sew on occasionally at events? Or do I save my money and time to move on to my next sewing machine project? (Because there ARE more sewing machine projects on my shelf waiting for me!) What would you do?