Singer sewing machines were the first in reliable home sewing machines. The mechanical sewing machines are still considered the best of the "old reliable" machines. They may have fewer bells and whistles than the electronic sewing machines, but that means there's less that can go wrong. Most people sewing at home don't use over 80% of the fancy extras available on the electronic machines. You can't go wrong with a sturdy mechanical Singer sewing machine.
If you're just beginning with sewing, there are sewing machines available for less than $200. Just think, for less money than it takes to outfit your family for a new season, you could have a new sewing machine to outfit them for life. Besides the sheer practicality, sewing machines increase your ability to create, to decorate, and to teach the art of stitchery. Your purchase is more than just a machine. It's an investment in your home.
New Mechanical Models from Singer
Lower on the page you'll see older models that ran Singer's good name into the ground. Thankfully, Singer realized that cheap plastic machines were not living up to their brand name and have brought back basic workhorse machines. Check these out:
On Amazon, 15 out of 28 reviews gave it 5 stars, again average of 4 out of 5 stars. Of the mechanical machines at Singer, this is currently one of the better models according to reviews on the internet. It is a simple machine, but it's also very affordable.
Packed with the basic features of a home sewing machine, the 1507 is not meant to be a fancy machine. This is touted in online reviews as a good machine for beginners.
Should take some of the challenge out of the tension knob.
Automatic 4-step Buttonhole
Full control of your buttonholes.
Free Arm with Accessory Storage
Makes storage and usage both easy in small spaces.
Adjustable Stitch Length
Full control over your stitch length.
Machine Dust Cover
No need to purchase a hard cover.
Measures 15 by 8 by 12 inches.
Comes with Feed Cover Plate, Zipper Foot, Buttonhole Foot, Button Sewing Foot, and General Purpose (All Purpose) Foot.
Also includes Needles, Bobbins, Buttonhole Opener/BrushLint Brush, Oil, Screwdriver (large), Spool Cap (large), and Spool Cap (small).
On Amazon, Walmart, and Wize, this little machine generally got very good reviews. Many of the other lower priced Singer machines don't get good user reviews, so we feel that this is the model to recommend in the low priced mechanical Singer sewing machine line.
There are still the occasional reports about timing going out on the machine, and bobbin tension problems that seem to plague many lower priced machines. These problems seem less in this model, though.
This little Singer mechanical sewing machine gets generally good reviews by users. With only the most basics such as 8 stitches, a 4-step buttonhole function, and a few presser feet, this machine is best for those who have simple needs from a sewing machine. Most of the reviewers who were happiest with the machine were either beginners or only wanted the most basic functions on a sewing machine.
This model of the Simple line, the 3116 Simple seems to be almost universally panned as a lemon. Problems with the bobbin abound, timing problems, difficulty getting service, poor company response, and continuous break downs seem to be the rule rather than the exception.
Here are the features of this Simple machine:
18 Stitch Patterns
When the machine works...
Fully Automatic 1-step Buttonhole
Sorry, I can't give you a video of that, I've only used the 4-step buttonhole function.
Drop Feed for Free Motion Sewing
This is instead of a feed dog cover for things like sewing on buttons.
Reviews on Amazon, Bizrate, epinions and others indicate that the 4205 Inspiration has a lot of problem. The timing goes off on the machine, and then you can't sew at all. Bobbin tension leading to birds nesting is another very common problem, and not just with new to sewing users. On sewing.patternreview.com, the reviewers of the 4210 and 4212 models would not recommend purchasing that model.
The features sound good, but this is not the workhorse machine our mothers used.
6 stitch patterns - 5 most practical and frequently used are clearly marked and easy to select
Bare bones basics, but who really uses 70 stitches?
They do make fine buttonholes.
NoError threading - fail safe, one way upper thread path.
The video does make it look easy.
SureFit Bobbin system - always lets you know when inserted correctly
Check out the instructions.
* Top drop-in bobbin with clear cover - makes it easy to load and monitor bobbin thread level
The Inspiration series seems to have been a low cost mechanical sewing machine attempt by Singer. For those of us who have grown up with mechanical Singer sewing machines, that sounds just about right. In the end, the manufacturing seems to have been outsourced, according to internet rumors, and the resulting product is cheap, but in all senses of the word. Not recommended for purchase.
You'll find your best deals may be at a local dealer near you. Often they'll offer free intro courses or some special club discount for purchasing at their store. On the other hand, if you don't have a good sewing machine dealer near you, or your sales tax is high in your state, you may want to consider buying online.
You can find sewing machines at discount prices online at eBay.com. Be sure to check out the seller's ratings, and all the delivery fees that a seller may have. Maybe watch a few auctions to see how the bidding on the machines goes first. Then when you see the machine that's just right for you, choose your highest bid and let eBay take care of your bidding.