Old Singer machines have become collectibles, valued for their antique quality and history. Some also prefer these machines as more accurate sewing alternatives to the modern fast-sewing machines. Therefore, knowing how to identify an old machine will be essential should you choose to acquire one.
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Determine if the machine is electronic. Older Singer machines were manual and, therefore, did not rely on any electronic mechanisms.
Look for a hand-crank mechanism, which is a large circle on the right of the machine. Generally, unless it is missing, a Singer should include a crank attached to the large circle.
Identify the sewing machine's serial number. If it has no letter prefix, it was created prior to the 1900s. A single-letter prefix means the machine was created from 1900 to 1935. Visit Singer's website for more specific clarity on your machine's model (see References).