Another edition of Reader Mail:
I get this question probably a couple of times a year, so today I’m presenting a post with a video companion! Jocelyn and I spoke via email but I asked her if it would be OK to use her email for reader mail. I’m guessing she didn’t expect me to get to it almost 2 years later! (I really do get that behind on the site stuff!)
Jocelyn emailed me some time ago to ask:
Hi, I inherited my mom’s Singer 411G. (Lucky ME!). Both spool pins are broken and I am having a devil of a time trying to find replacements.
Any insight/direction/suggestions would be gratefully appreciated.
The 411G is an excellent machine! One of Singer’s best for sure. The spool pins though. Ugh!! This is actually my only complaint about the entire machine. Those pins can be character building to change. To do it properly, you should remove the stitch chart on the bottom of the lid or you risk bending it.
The parts that you need
Most will likely still be with the machine and the pin itself is still available through the “regular” channels – i.e. I can get them for you, your local sewing shop should be able to order them for you and several online shops sell them.
There are 4 components to this “pin”.
- The 507077 spool pin is the only piece still available new.
- The “pad” that holds the pin about 3/8″ from the base of the lid, so the base of that pin sits flush with the lid. I use a featherweight bed cushion 45780 to replace the ones that seem to disappear. It’s a tight fit, and it sits ever so slightly above the top of the lip of the cover.
- There’s a flat nylon or plastic washer that attaches underneath the plate – if this was missing, I’m sure there’s something in the hardware section of Home Depot or similar.
- Then a push nut – like the one that holds the stitch chart onto the lid. When these are missing, I use a 3/16″ “push nut” made by Paulin part number 442-410. I get them at Home Depot in a 10 pack baggie. They’re very tight and do well with being drilled out a tiny bit to fit on easier.
The tools you’ll need:
- Needle nose pliers
- A long thin blade screwdriver
- (Optional) A good stiff drink
- Remove the lid and set the machine aside
- Detach the stitch plate cover from the lid and set the lid aside
- Gently work a blade screwdriver in under the plate from the hinge side.
- Put your finger on the push nut so it doesn’t go flying when you release it.
- Using a motion similar to opening a paint can, work your way under the plate around the area where the push nut is. It will pop off with the plate. (This is easiest to visualize if you watch the video – keep reading!)
- Remove the broken pins by pulling the push nut off the pins
- Assemble the new pins
- Push the push nut back on using the needle nose pliers.
- Reinstall the stitch plate
- Reinstall the cover onto the machine lid
- Install the cover onto the machine.
Craig emailed me last year to mention that he’d made some spool pins out of some bolts that he’d modified. He also suggested that some of the nylon bolts and nuts may work as well. These are the ones he sent me to evaluate:
He also sent me these in the package. The top ones are the originals. The bottom ones, I’ve seen before but didn’t find the day I was looking for them. I like these better than the Paulin ones above and will be looking for them the next time I need replacements!
How about you guys? Have you subbed any parts for the original spool pins? Will this help you revive your machine?