Failure and Repair.
Linda’s 33 year old, ‘vintage’ sewing machine started smoking the other night. The machine was just sitting there when the motor started by itself and smoke emerged from the machine! They unplugged the machine but there remained a ‘nice’ odor in the room. This has been an excellent sewing machine over the years.
We plugged it in the next day and the motor started at a slow speed without depressing the foot pedal. After concluding the machine is not worth much anymore I started the disassembly. I was able to eventually get to the motor and the little terminal box that held some electronics. There was capacitor that had blown up leaving a moist oil like substance on the terminal board. The cap had a label indicating it was 0.1 uf, 250V ~ MP, fo = 3.6 Mhz, PME 271M. This turned out to be a interference suppressor used, I think, to reduce electrical noise caused by the motor.. I looked for a replacement capacitor but found only one half the size that sold in lots of 200 for about $2 each. ($400).
The motor and terminal board assembly.
The blown capacitor. Its belly is missing.
I didn’t want to leave the machine disassembled too long for fear I may not get it back together correctly so I completely removed the capacitor. Now the sewing machine works just fine. Maybe when the motor is running we will hear interference on our radio or tv. I may look further for a replacement part as time permits?
Here the beauty is.
I wonder how many more years of service this machine will provide? There are some new machines out there even in the $150 neighborhood that may outperform this vintage sewing machine. Who knows?