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Old 17-11-2015, 18:22   #1
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Battery operated sewing machine

Goodday lads im in the process of taking sewing lessons in hope of being able to do my own sail repairs if needed.I was wondering if anyone may know of a sewing machine that is battery operated that could handle the job...any input would be greatly appreciated. .. cheers mates
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Old 17-11-2015, 18:51   #2
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

Sailrites can be converted to manual. But almost any machine can run off a fairly small inverter.


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Old 17-11-2015, 19:52   #3
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

G'day, Mate. As JMan indicated, we successfully used a portable jump starter battery back with a 300 watt inverter to run our sewing machine. The machine was 110 volts and we would use the inverter when we stayed ashore down in this part of the world where the mains voltage is 220 ac. All the best. Cheers.
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Old 17-11-2015, 20:27   #4
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

Quote:
Originally Posted by matauwhi View Post
G'day, Mate. As JMan indicated, we successfully used a portable jump starter battery back with a 300 watt inverter to run our sewing machine. The machine was 110 volts and we would use the inverter when we stayed ashore down in this part of the world where the mains voltage is 220 ac. All the best. Cheers.
$19.99 and free shipping:

200W Watt Step Up Down Voltage Converter Transformer AC 110V to 220V St 200 | eBay
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Old 17-11-2015, 20:48   #5
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

G'day, Senor. Yup, heaps of step down transformers available down here. Already had the inverter on board so could use the 20 bucks for a bottle or two of good kiwi wine ;-) Cheers.
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Old 17-11-2015, 21:55   #6
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

Jeeeezzzzz, my Sailrite LZ1 is taking up enough space as it is, can't imagine adding a battery to drive it.
I would recommend ya sticking with the inverter as mentioned above.
By the way, if your gonna do "Sail repair" make sure you get a machine with Zig Zag capability. You might be able to do an emergency repair with just a straight stiching machine, but for a few more bucks, the Zig Zag will make your life so much more enjoyable. And you can get all the " Wine" you can drink once all your dock mates find out you can sew.

Good luck!
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Old 18-11-2015, 08:52   #7
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

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Originally Posted by Jman View Post
Sailrites can be converted to manual. But almost any machine can run off a fairly small inverter.


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I had a regular sewing machine [old monkey wards, metal gears, zig zag plus strait stitch, portable ] updated buy adding a grip speared feeder press and a hand crank attachment so it could be used without ac, and while underway. I could get things done while on the hook with no generator.
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Old 18-11-2015, 09:58   #8
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

Use this idea, the bracket is just an aluminum angle with a couple holes and bolts to fit the old motor mount, and a hose clamp to hold the drill. Make a belt drive pulley on a bolt you can chuck into the drill chuck. To make it battery powered, use a battery drill or the 12v drill mod I show. I use a 120 volt plug with extension and battery clips, so I can use this drill up the mast or a long way from the battery by using a standard extension cord, just be smart enough not to use 120 volts, I label it with a paper note and clear packing tape.

I try to have lots of this kind of stuff on my good stuff page on my website. The link is below.

The older machines are much tougher and sometimes you need a little more torque than the original 120v motor can give to go through 6 layers of sail material.

Good ideas
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Old 18-11-2015, 10:17   #9
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

I wonder if a treadle would work?
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Old 18-11-2015, 10:27   #10
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

DC Servo motor:

Servo Motors
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Old 18-11-2015, 11:04   #11
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

All sorts of things are possible but if buying new I would go for the Sailrite machine, will do anything from repairs to making full new sails. The hand crank is very useful for small repairs. The walking foot is essential for a neat job, stops the top canvas feeding slower than the bottom and causing cockles. If you havent been show it yet the secret to good sail work is to use double sided tape to stick everything in place before sewing, transforms the job.
On power a decent machine will have a startup current of 2-3x the motor rating so a 100w motor = 9A = 18-27A at startup. If you don't want trip things this means you need about 27*12=340 or 300-350w of inverter power for each 100w on the sewing machine motor. The basic Sailright machine is 165w so you would be OK with a 500 or 750w inverter.
Repairing or making sails for your boat is not only very useful it is very satisfying, to take a length of clothe and turn it into something that will take you across an ocean is the ultimate DIY project
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Old 18-11-2015, 11:08   #12
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

Thanks lads great info..will help us out greatly..cheers
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Old 18-11-2015, 12:29   #13
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

Every small boat that I know of can use or uses an inverter to convert DC mains to 115V 50 of 60 HZ, so commercial equipment can be run on board.
The efficiency of a larger inverter is about the same as the smaller ones and you get the benefit of a permanent mount, so space is about the only reason of going with a lower power inverter.
Those home type sewing machines ran off a series AC motor and is normally not sensitive to input waveshape so sine wave inverter is not required.
I use a Wagen 3KW modified square wave inverter off the house bank supply for most AC @ line voltage. .
I run a SINGER 401A for sewing, it is all gear driven with no belts or cheap plastic parts. Chassis is cast aluminum. Well supported currently on ebay.
It uses cams to provide programming of stitches.
I have found some issues: The bobbin is small and will not supply much #70 thread, the largest needle is a #18.
Thread tensioning is basically an art on the heavy thread on heavy cavass but, the sail cloth and marine fabrics are not as thick as canvas and sew nicely. Got 6 yards of sunbrella from sailrite the other day for next project.
Since all the drive parts are machined steel or bronze it needs much attention when stored on a boat or it will rust, probably true for the sailrite machines too because they are mostly cast iron and steel.
Sailboat with no sewing machine, such a world.
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Old 18-11-2015, 13:39   #14
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

The drill powered sewing machine looks cool, but how do you get any decent amount of fabric through it?
There's a reason for the deck area under the arm.

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Old 18-11-2015, 14:04   #15
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Re: Battery operated sewing machine

My sewing machine hasn't been working properly on shore power. I should get out the inverter, but instead I am trying to convince my husband that we need to make a trip to Lehmans to stock up on manual tools before we head out!
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