Thursday, June 11, 2015

FMQ with my Vintage Singer 201!

So excited! At the quilt show, this past weekend, there was a first time vendor with parts for VSM's. I bought 2 different kinds of low-shank darning feet.

Just tried the first one on my beloved Singer 201 and we are movin' and a groovin'!!! 

First things first - we need attach the foot

Next....drop the feed dogs.

Gently lift the machine so you can see her underbelly.

Right there towards the front is the lever that needs to move.   Gently unscrew the screw (it doesn't come out all the way) and when it's free, pull out gently, move the lever and seat the screw in the hole closest to you.

Next - we set the stitch length to ZERO (all the way down if you can't see the numbers anymore)

Then we pull the bobbin thread up through the fabric 

And AWAY we go!!!

I noticed that when I go really fast, I get a few skipped stitches. Watching the thread come off the spool pin I see that there are times that the check spring doesn't get to do its job. The thread ends up with a little slack because it got an uneven spin off the spool. 

Going to dig through my stuff and find that standing spool holder that I've never used and see how that fairs!!

I can't wait to find my comfort zone with Free Motion Quilting on this beautiful classy girl!!


  1. Thanks for this post, I really need lessons in Fmq, but will try on the 201. I didn't know how to lower the feed dogs. What do you set your tension at?

    1. Your tension should stay between 3 & 4 depending on the thread size. The only thing you modify is the stitch length. You NEED tension on the top thread to form the stitches.

  2. What Screw do you unscrew? I don't understand that part.

    1. You turn the "thumb screw" on the right hand side. Pictures 5 and 6. It's not the screws that have a slotted tip that you would need a tool to loosen - it's the one with the ribbed edges and smooth top - designed to be unscrewed with your fingers (just like the one on the presser foot and face plate - but not shiny)

  3. The 201 is out again. I found a manual this summer and got the feed lowered.
    Now working on getting a good stitch. I googled 'how to' and found this post again.

    1. Welcome back! I did end up FMQing an entire quilt (look for Jewel Box Journey on my blog) with my 201, and I thoroughly enjoyed it! I have since changed out the old rheostat foot controller for an electronic one from Sew-Classic. I like the control I get from the electronic controller. The one I had on my 201 started to get REALLY hot!