Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Chem 101 or ATFacetone.

I mixed up my concoction this afternoon.  It does not appear that acetone and ATF are solutes.
I found this adorable little glass jar in the kitchen sans cap.  It came from a shishi hotel that serves jelly in these jars.  I saved it for sewing machine repair.  I think Steven tossed the cap.  So I had to fashion a lid out of a rag and an ill fitting screw on top.  It works.  The acetone will evaporate readily but hopefully this will prevent that.  But if by Saturday  only ATF +4 is  left in the jar I will add some more acetone.  Actually, I just had an idea.  I will put this little jar in a bigger jar right now.   OK forget it.  I just transferred everything into a suitable vessel with a  proper lid.  There.  Now I feel better.
I asked for the cheapest.  Who knew it would be for Chrysler?  Now, here's a trivia question, what automobile maker also made sewing machines?  Yup, Chrysler made some  Kenmore 120 series.

Personally I think it sounds like a lawn mower.  For ten bucks I could have that same model.  There is one for sale not 15 miles from here.  But it is UGLY and feels cheap and why would I want a CHRYSLER? 

Back to Chemistry lab.

I have a little bottle of acetone in my stash of chemicals and solvents. It is decades old nail polish remover.   It does not carry the same warning label found on the acetone I bought yesterday
I must warn my pregnant manicurist.  Seriously, I don't have a manicurist but if I did, I would warn him or her pregnant or not.    

So we shall see what comes of this little chemistry experiment.  I am not holding out a lot of hope.  I think I will get some fuel for my cute little butane torch and throw some serious heat on this part.  I did heat the part up with the hair dryer just before I put it in its bath.   I got to use my nifty little bench vice and just left the hair dryer on high for about five minutes.  When I dropped the part into the ATFacetone (sort of sounds like I am at a casino) I saw some bubbles float out from the roller.  Maybe something will get in there and loosen things up. 


  1. The White Company of Cleveland made cars as well as sewing machines.

  2. Hi Elizabeth,
    I've been following your blog, which I find most helpful, while trying to keep up with my wife's garage sale/estate sale sewing machine buying habit. Thanks for a LOT of good tips!
    Your chemistry experiment prompted me to write this note. I had to laugh a bit as you are half way to a concoction I use. I'm referring to Ed's Red, which is a very popular cleaner in one of my interests, used for gun cleaning. The stuff works great for freeing up gunked up stuck parts and is quite economical, just a bit smelly. It's comprised of equal parts of Dexron ATF (GM), kerosene, odorless mineral spirits, and acetone. Here's a link that gives a bit of history ( the recipe is half-way down the page):
    Steven may be familiar with this cleaner...

    Anyway, thanks for a most helpful blog. I use it quite regularly as I dive into yet another yard sale find. I need a bigger barn!
    Steve ..

  3. Toyota,as well. But they make almost everything.
    I suspect Tata of India; their web site says they make textile equipment, but I cannot discern if they make domestic sewing machines. I think not.