Here's one I haven't heard of. That's not saying a whole lot, because I haven't been dinking around with sewing machines for a very long period of time.
So I'm at the local Goodwill and spot the lone sewing machine case on the shelf. Looks like any other generic case I've seen hundreds of times before.
Hefting the case off the shelf (upwards of 40 pounds) tells me there is a generic cast iron sewing machine housed within. Upon popping the lid off, I see a generic Japanese zig zag machine. Hmm, "Read's" it says on the label. Not one I've heard before and kind of a strange name for a sewing machine.
But wait, what's this? Now *that's* a handwheel. Looks a lot like a discus, not that I've ever seen one in person, but this is what I picture when I hear the word 'discus'.
Has someone added a "monster"-type handwheel to this baby? And why would they do that? Wait a minute, there's a plastic handle in the storage tray. What does that do? Ahh, it threads into the handwheel. Now things are beginning to make sense.
I didn't bother to put on my reading glasses (you turn 50 and everything starts to go downhill) at the store to get a somewhat clear and close-up view of this thing but when I got home and took some photos, I realized I got me a Read's Sailmaker sewing machine.
I know nothing about the Read's company but I would assume they took a standard heavy duty machine of the day and put on a large handwheel and Dayton motor (and maybe adjusted things for heavy thread), then sold the machines aimed at the sailboat owner.
I did a quick online search for J.J. & J. Read LTD in Southampton but couldn't find a web presence, so I'm not sure if they are still in business.
This machine I picked up was most likely used for (or on) a boat since it came with a cone of white V-69 thread. It also came with a couple packages of size 16 and 18 needles, perfect for heavy duty sail sewing. If only sewing machines could talk. I wonder what exotic locations this one has been... besides the local Goodwill.
The bobbin is the left/right-shifting shuttle type (is there a term for this?), meaning the shuttle/bobbin slides left when the needle zigs to the left, and slides right when the needle zags to the right. Or is it right zig and left zag...
Here are a few more photos.
Yet one more reason I like this hobby. There is usually something new and interesting that turns up at the local thrift store.