What a pretty Kenmore! This is surely one of the classics of mid-Century Japanese sewing machines, made before the degradation of sewing machine quality, in general. This is high-quality, war-grade steel and Japanese perfection working together to make something beautiful.
This Kenmore Stylist 86 is a strong straight-stitch machine with a full 1 Amp motor (compared to the black, vintage Singers that have plenty of power with their half-Amp motors) capable of easily sewing multiple layers of heavy material and even garment leather.
It uses universal needles and standard class 15 bobbins, the most common in the world and available everywhere. It features an easy, bed-mounted feed drop control and an instant-release Patch-o-Matic type sewing foot pressure control.
As you can see in the photos, the chips and scratches on the bed have been touched up with a color that doesn't quite match, You can touch up the color, yourself if it bothers you, though I kind of like it, and it will protect the finish as it is.
It's just come off the restoration bench, here at Stagecoach Road Vintage Sewing Machine, and it runs as good as it looks. It's clean, clean, clean, through and through because we've had it apart and scrubbed the parts in an alcohol bath, and when it was done and tested, our detailer, Linda, scrubbed and polished the exterior.
You've heard it said that, "they don't make them like they used to", and that's because they really can't. The Corporate bottom line mandates that profit is far more important than quality, so most modern machines are pretty much disposables, to be used for a year or two and then replaced with another cheap disposable.
We don't feel that way
Here at Stagecoach Road Vintage Sewing Machine, we are passionate about what we love doing, which is restoring beautiful vintage sewing machines to the best that they can be, and over the decades we've restored, literally, hundreds of worthy sewing machines, and shipped them all over the country and beyond. Why? Because we are in love with the styling, the quality of the materials, the workmanship that went into these great machines, which just can't be duplicated today.
You, seriously, cannot buy a home sewing machine this good, new, at any price.
So we search out the best of these fine machines, the ones that are very lightly used, and open them up.
We disassemble the tension, the motor, the bobbin case, take off the face plate, the gear cases, the hand-wheel, the slide plate, the bottom plate, and the back access plate and get down to where the old dried-on oil and grease are.
We clean out the packed-in lint and dust, remove the thread-jams, inspect the hook and the needle plate, and generally look for potential problems.
We take out the needle bar and all it's linkages and the presser foot bar and all it's parts and put them into the alcohol bath to remove the years of sticky oil buildup that bogs down a vintage machine and robs it of speed and power.
We take out as much of the stitch pattern forming mechanisms as needed to get deep into each machine to free it up and then lubricate each moving part. The main shafts, bearings, and other parts get cleaned in place to make each machine run as free and light as a new machine.
We use high-quality lubricants in all the right places, getting into those spots that aren't as obvious to the average user, and clean out the old hardened grease from the gear cases, then we test the machines to make sure that they are sewing at their best.
After all of this, each machine is carefully detailed, to bring out it's original beauty. These are some of the finest examples of mid-century styling that you'll find, and we want each machine to be the very best that it can be.
We don't try to hide the scratches or chips that have been honestly earned in service to their craft, and rarely re-paint because we prefer the original paint in most cases. We like the wabi-sabi beauty of a working sewing machine. And if the stickers from the various repair shops they've seen aren't too damaged we leave those, too, so you can see were your new machine has been in it's lifetime.
Finally, because we believe in these wonderful, built-to-last machines and in the work we do, we offer this free Lifetime Guaranty:
If you ever have a problem with one of our restored vintage machines, just bring or send it back to us and if we can fix it, we'll do so for free. You, of course, will pay for any parts or shipping.
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