Monday, July 1, 2013

Domestic Model 69 Hi-Speed

Now there's a term you don't normally associate with an almost 100-year-old sewing machine - "Hi-Speed". But alas, there it is, in bold letters on the front of the sewing machine. I'm getting ahead of myself though. First, let me show the nifty case this brown beauty came in.

And the keen brass plaque on top:

I'm glad they told me which was the front... And look at those patent dates. Patent dates, you quietly wonder to yourself? Now why would someone patent a portable wooden sewing case? Ahhh, but there's more to this story.

The box has a set of four pins that extend out the ends of the box and into the lid when the key is turned, locking the lid to the base. I had to make the triangle-shaped key but now that I have a proper key, the latches work well to hold the machine inside the case, which isn't a small feat when you consider this thing must weight close to 40 pounds. The case bottom also had a table extension of sorts that doubles as an accessories box. It slides up and then latches to the side of the main case to give a larger working surface.

Inside the extension box was a "Sewing Secrets" booklet put out by Coats & Clark's, and is dated 1930, so it is just about as old as the sewing machine. The sewing machine manual also came with the machine, but is missing the front and back covers. A few screwdrivers were also in the box.

The bobbin winder mechanism appears to be missing a lever so I don't know where I'll be getting one anytime soon. The motor is also missing the brush screws and a spring/brush so I can't tell how well the thing runs. *sigh*

The manual that came with the machine is for a treadle so it doesn't show the motor setup (or the bobbin winding mechanism). I'm thinking that this was a transition piece. It is still a cool looking machine.

It looks like the motor has a date of 7-19-22, assuming that is a date... And a leather drive belt.

What a great old sewing machine, but I may never know how truly "Hi-Speed" it really is. Some day I will hopefully find the parts I need to get this thing up and running again.


  1. Hi, I have one of these lovely sewing machines but it is missing the bobbin cover plate. Do you have any idea where I might find one? Thank you in advance for any help you can give me on this.

    Cynthia Soto

  2. A couple things I might suggest is just a blind internet search for a Hi-Speed someone is parting out. A part from another model Domestic (little newer or older) may also work. I have a couple Domestics (153's) and will try to compare bobbin plates with the Hi-Speed and get back to you.