Friday, April 26, 2013

Singer 201-2 Tension assembly

I have posted A LOT about the tension assembly.  In all of those posts, I have not shown how the check spring fits into the tension stud.  So here it is.   I have removed the tension assembly from the machine.  To do so, find the set screw just behind the thread guide and loosen it.  If you are lucky the tension assembly will pull out.  If it is stuck, loosen it with some tri flow or LW (liquid wrench) and wait.


The parts.
 Please note that the tension release pin must be placed into the stud as shown.  I recommend that you do so AFTER you have placed the check spring, tension discs and thread guard on the stud.  You will be less likely to lose it.

tail of the check spring
 Sandwich the tension discs (flats facing eachother) and the thread guard in between the coil of the check spring and the eyelet.
 Place this onto the stud so that the tail of the check spring nestles into one of the grooves on the tension stud.  If the check spring has too much bounce, you must move the tail to a different groove.  If it doesn't have enough, move it to a groove the opposite way.
(Don't forget the tension release pin.  It must go into the tension stud before you put the indicator on.)
Next comes the indicator.  Place it on the stud with the flat side next to the thread guard.
Now place the tension spring onto the stud so that the first half coil of the spring straddles the lower half of the stud.

Next comes the stop washer positioned on the stud so that the extension sits above the tension stud.
Now place the numbered dial on the stud positioned so that the Number 2 is oppositethe stop washer extension.
Compress the numbered dial against the spring  as you thread the thumb nut  onto the tension stud with the pin toward the numbered dial.  Guide the pin into one of the holes on the numbered dial.   Place the whole assembly on the machine, making sure that the extension on the thread guard fits into the hole on the machine. The presser foot must be DOWN when you out the tension assembly back on the machine.   Position the check spring so that it rests on the extension on the left side of the thread guide. 
Make sure that the  + and - are positioned on top and tighten the set screw.

24 comments:

  1. Just simply AEWSOME close-up pics. Thank you.
    Rick Engel

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  2. Hi! I happend across your blog the other day looking up "tension posts" . I spontaneously took apart the tension on a singer industrial, when all I've heard is NEVER touch the tension dial! I'm not a professional, but I love figuring out how things work. Following your blog from now on, and thanks for writing informative, to the point, sometimes funny posts.

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    1. I imagine that the tension on an industrial machine is very similar to a domestic, right? My 31-15 looks very much like an old Singer 27 tension assembly. Hope you got it back together

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  3. Wow! You have great pictures! So clear and detailed.
    I have a pre 1950 Necchi BF machine. Would these pieces be the same on my machine?
    Thank you.

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    1. I don't know Necchi at all. Probably not the same, but similar.

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  4. Very proud that I did. It's not a numbered dial either!

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  5. Your closeups are SO great! What type camera and model#?

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    1. I love my Canon Power shot A4000 IS HD. I use it on low light and close up and then I crop and re-size with Photoshop Elements. I had the same camera with a touch screen. I dropped it too many times. Now I wear this one around my neck on a lanyard.

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  6. excellent photos and super helpful! Thanks much and God Bless, Ann from KY

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  7. Love this post - very useful!!

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  8. Thank you for taking time to prepare and post your tutorial.
    The close up photos are awsome.
    -Phyllis in Iowa

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  9. Thanks for this great tutorial! I took my tension assembly apart on a 201-2 I got last weekend. I was having a difficult time with the manual and getting every thing back together but your tutorial really did the trick for me. I really appreciate the effort and time you took to post clear close up photos and great descriptions. :)

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    1. You are welcome! Have a blast with your 201-2. I used my 201-3 as a treadle today. Such a nice machine. So smooth.

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  10. After two years, I finally got my tension assembly to work properly on my Fashion Mate 237 because of your instruction to put the presser feet DOWN while putting it back together...thank you so much for this tutorial!

    Claire - from Belgium

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  11. After spending umpteen days with a magnifying glass and 2 pairs of glasses, This was the most helpful----thanks a million

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    1. You are most welcome. At 60, I need lots of magnification and more light. I like to take a photo and then use the zoom in feature on the camera.

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  12. Thanks to your step by step instructions and wonderful photos, I've replaced the wonky check-spring in my 201 quite painlessly. Thanks for providing such a valuable resource.
    Cindy T in MN

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  13. I was most afraid of this task- even after rewiring the motor- but between you and the wonderful man at the Vintage Sewing Machine Blog I got it all apart and all back together. It keeps consistent tension much better after those tufts of fabric and that chunk of pencil lead were out! I did have to fiddle a lot at the end of reassembly- it would only turn from 0 to 5 or 6 for a while. I was aligning with 2 at the top before tightening the last of the screw. I moved it to 5 and voila! Tension smoothly turns from 0 to 9 on the dial and correctly tightens or loosens the thread (with presser foot down, of course) and the pretty pretty stitches issue forth without sudden jam ups anymore.

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  14. And here's tomorrow's job! My check spring is sitting wrongly and puts no tension on the thread, creating a loopy mess when sewing.

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  15. Would problems with the tension cause skipped stitches? I got a 201-2 that is skipping stitches. I just started working on it.

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    1. I suppose it is possible. Skipped stitches could be due to dirt or thread caught in the bobbin case. If there is damage to the hook, I guess that could be a problem. Perhaps the bobbin is wound too loosely. Many possibilities.

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Thanks for reading. Do leave a comment. IF YOU HAVE A SPECIFIC QUESTION IT IS BEST TO EMAIL ME (see the top of the blog for address under Contact Me) . If you pose a question in the comments, likely I cannot respond unless I have your email address. Happy sewing!