Singer Sewing Model 478 Instructions

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Things You'll Need

  • Sewing thread

  • Empty bobbin

  • Scissors

With a little direction you can use a vintage machine in no time.

Singer's model 478 sewing machine looks and functions differently from modern sewing machines, making it difficult to operate if you don't have a copy of the owner's manual. Once you learn how to operate the basic functions of the model 478, such as winding the bobbin, threading the bobbin casing, and raising the bobbin thread, you'll be able to use the sewing machine.

Winding the Bobbin

Step 1

Raise the needle by turning the hand wheel. The needle should be in the highest position possible to provide access to the bobbin casing.

Step 2

Remove the bobbin by opening the slide plate and gently lifting the bobbin out of the bobbin casing.

Step 3

Twist the stop-motion screw, located in the center of the handwheel. Turn the stop-motion screw towards you to engage it. You may need to hold onto the handwheel while you turn the screw.

Step 4

Place the bobbin onto the bobbin spindle. The spindle is located on the upper right front of the machine, above the stitch selector dial.

Step 5

Thread the machine for bobbin winding by placing a spool of thread on the thread spindle. Pull a length of thread from the spool and feed it through the eyelet at the top of the machine, down through the thread guide located below the eyelet, around the bobbin winding tension knob, and up to the bobbin.

Step 6

Prep the bobbin for winding by feeding the thread into the bobbin and out the small hole at the top. Place the bobbin onto the bobbin spindle.

Step 7

Switch the bobbin winding engage lever to the on position.

Step 8

Hold the tail of thread coming from your bobbin out and away to the right of the sewing machine. Make sure the sewing machine is on and start the machine by pressing the foot pedal. The bobbin will begin to wind and will stop automatically when the bobbin is full.

Step 9

Move the bobbin winding engage lever to off. Cut the thread feeding from the spool, and closely cut the tail of thread at the top.

Step 10

Tighten the stop-motion screw and unthread the machine.

Thread the Machine and Needle

Step 1

Place a spool of thread on the thread pin. Pull a length of thread from the spool.

Step 2

Raise the sewing needle to the highest position by turning the handwheel.

Step 3

Guide the thread through the eyelet on the top of the machine, down and through the eyelets located on the thread tension knob. Go up and through the thread guide located at the top of the machine, back down through the thread guide located at the left-hand side of the machine and down to hook around the thread guide located just above the presser foot.

Step 4

Pull the thread so you have a 3 to 4 inch long tail. Thread this tail through the eye of the needle.

Threading the Bobbin Case

Step 1

Pull a 3 to 4 inch length of thread from the bobbin. Position the bobbin so that this thread pulls counterclockwise – the tail of the thread should be on your right. Place the bobbin into the bobbin casing, making sure you the thread on your right.

Step 2

Guide the length of thread into the notch in the bobbin casing, and under the tension spring by pulling it gently to the left.

Step 3

Pull the same length of thread across the top of the bobbin diagonally from lower right hand corner to upper left hand corner.

Step 4

Close the slide plate, which covers the bobbin and casing, with the tail of thread hanging out of the casing. Push this tail of thread to the back of the machine.

Raise the Bobbin Thread

Step 1

Turn the handwheel while holding the tail of thread coming from the needle, so that the needle is in the lowest position possible.

Step 2

Use the handwheel to raise and lower the needle until the bobbin thread is brought up through the hole between the feed dogs. Untangle the two threads.

Step 3

Pull both threads toward the back of the sewing machine.