About a month ago I looked at a Wheeler and Wilson Treadle machine at a local antique mall……it was $110 and I thought it was a great deal but I ended up buying a Singer 201-2 and a Montgomery Ward in a cabinet. Neither worked but I worked on them and they work great now and both together only cost 50 dollars. Yesterday Bonnie Hunter , who is here in Lansing with the Capital City Quilt Guild, posted a picture of that treadle machine on Facebook. Some of the people from the guild had taken her to the antique mall and she saw the machine. Last night I told her I almost bought it a month ago and she told me it was on sale for 55 dollars…….I went and bought it today 🙂
It was missing 2 drawers….I found one that fit at the mall……I’ll find another some day. The Wheeler and Wilson D9 was launched in 1887 and was destined to become the company’s most successful domestic. Driven by an efficient rotary hook, there is a tightness to the engineering that makes for very smooth operation.
In 1905, the Wheeler and Wilson Co. was taken over by Singer. The D9 was well-established in the market and Singer wasn’t going to turn down sales, so production was switched to Singers Elizabethport factory, the center of Singer’s domestic production. The company re-branded the machine as the Singer 9W1. With its square arm pillar and W&W styling, the 9W had never looked quite at home in Singer’s catalog and by the 1920s, once the Singer 101 rotary had established itself, the 9W7 was phased out.
It threads from right to left and uses a 127×1 (9W1) needle which are no longer made so I will be looking for some old stock needles for this machine. The bobbins are also odd sized and I only have the one that came with the machine so I will be on the lookout for those as well.
An unusual feature of the thread path on this is the tiny pulley on the face plate that forms a secondary tension device. That feature was later used on cloned (and licensed) versions and became common on several of Singer’s Bridgeport industrials.
It sews beautifully (after a good cleaning and oiling) and the treadle base is great. I do plan to use it when I get a few extra needles and bobbins. For now I took the head out and put in a Singer 127 (I had to do a little modification of the base, but the old machine will still fit back in when I am ready)
I started another machine quilting project with it.
I had planned to do a different quilt but when I looked at the thread I bought I realized that It just didn’t go well with he fabric so I started this one instead.
I got the backing fabric for my rose applique quilt today and I will be basting that soon for hand quilting……more on that soon