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Happy Birthday Camilla!

Camilla's modern Brother sewing machine has been giving her trouble, and she's been looking for something bulletproof to use for simple lockstitch. When we went to Ohio to visit my family over Christmas, she snagged a WWII-era Singer model 66-18 'Godzilla' from Goodwill for $15 as a birthday self-gift. It needed a little (actually, precious little) maintenance and one or two parts, which was my half of the gift.

The 66-18 was a slightly stripped down 66-16 that intentionally left out several minor features. The body is heavier, the sleeve bearings thicker, the belt guard and automatic-release bobbin winder are eliminated and the one-turn tensioner with numeric markings was replaced with an unmarked multi-turn tensioner (which was sturdier if less convenient).

I made a new part to replace a cracked bakelite power cord punch-down, replaced some amount of disintegrated natural rubber insulation in the motor, replaced the belt, oiled it, and aligned the timing as per the Singer service manual (available as a pdf from the Singer website). I also scrounged up an original owners manual for a 66-16 (scans here) which oddly is not on the Singer website, and a 66-16 model belt guard, bobbin winder and tensioner to give it back the bits that were dropped during wartime. The belt guard required some machining to fit (due to the 66-18's thicker sleeves) and a flat black powder coat matched it fairly well to the rest of the machine's finish.

All done!

Now she can amuse herself with the bottomless boxes of clever fussy attachments given to her by my mother. I like the one that looks like a can opener.

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