Vintage sewing machines like the Singer Stylist 457 were high-quality, top of the line models when they were originally produced. The heavy, metal bodies and gears made machines like the Stylist durable and built to last a lifetime, but the advent of new technology such as drop in bobbins and computerised stitch functions meant that this style of sewing machine was replaced as it dropped out of popularity. If you find a vintage Singer Stylist 457, you can have it up and running quickly once you learn how to thread the machine and wind the bobbin.
Turn the hand wheel to raise the needle in the needle casing.
Open the slide plate located directly under the needle. Lift the bobbin out of the bobbin casing and close the slide plate.
Locate the knob in the hand wheel. Hold the hand wheel firmly in one hand and turn the knob in a counter clockwise direction with the other.
Position the bobbin on the bobbin pin. The bobbin pin is located on the upper right front of the sewing machine, just to the right of the stitch selection knob.
Place a spool of thread on the thread spindle and feed the thread from the spool through the eyelet at the top of the machine. Continue to feed the thread through the thread guide located above the stitch tension winding knob, around the tension knob, over and around the tension winding knob and finally up to the bobbin.
Thread the bobbin itself by finding the tiny hole located on its top. Feed the thread into the bobbin and out this hole, leaving a 3-inch tail of thread. You may have to remove the bobbin from the bobbin pin to do this.
Find the bobbin winding switch on the front of the sewing machine and switch it to the "on" position.
Grab the 3-inch tail of thread coming from the bobbin. Switch the sewing machine on, if it is not already, and start the sewing machine by pressing down on the foot pedal. The bobbin will wind as you operate the sewing machine and will stop automatically when the bobbin has filled.
Remove the bobbin from the bobbin pin, click the bobbin winding switch to the "off" position and use scissors to snip both the spool threads and the tail close to the bobbin.
Remove the spool threads from the bobbin winding guides. Tighten the knob in the hand wheel by turning it clockwise.
Open the slide plate that covers the bobbin casing. Unwind a 2 or 3 inch piece of thread from a full or partially full bobbin.
Turn the bobbin in your hand until it's positioned so that the thread feeds from the counterclockwise direction. Put the bobbin into the casing, making sure the piece of thread you unwound in Step 1 is easily accessible.
Lightly pull the tail of thread to the left to guide it into the notch and under the tension spring located on the bobbin casing.
Lift the thread over the bobbin diagonally from top to bottom. Close the slide plate, making sure that the tail of thread is captured between the slide plate and machine's fixed face plate.
Turn the hand wheel and raise the sewing needle to the highest position.
Put the thread on the thread pin and pull the thread to make a tail.
Feed the tail of thread through the thread guide hole on the top of the machine. Move down the machine and feed it through the holes located on the tension knob, move the thread back up and into the thread guide at the top of the sewing machine and end by moving the thread back down and hooking it through the thread guide located just above the needle clamp.
Put this thread through the eye of the needle and pull it gently away from you to create a 3 to 4 inch long tail.
Grasp the 3 to 4 inch piece of thread coming through the eye of the needle while slowly turning the hand wheel clockwise so that the needle is dropped down inside the bobbin casing and at the lowest position.
Continue to turn the hand wheel clockwise until the bobbin thread is raised between the feed dogs.
Untangle the needle thread and the bobbin thread if they are wound together and pull both threads away from you to the rear of the sewing machine. The machine is now threaded and you can begin sewing.
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