Need info on Franklin sewing machine...

countrygal68March 10, 2007

Lookie at what my mom just gave me!! This has been passed down from my great grandmother to my grandmother and then to my mom, and tonight, I'm the proud owner. And it works!! Comes complete with extra needles, belts, and all of my grandmother's supplies. Mom has the owner's manual somewhere in her house, but it could take a couple of years to find it. :) As far as she can remember, my great grandmother purchased it from another older lady. Could anyone please give me any info on this model? It's a Franklin, and I'm not sure if that's the model number or not, but there's a number under the slide plate above the bobbin case. It is 178395. Any help will be greatly appreciated.

here's the pics:

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This was also my grandmother's. I think there's something missing from it. Does anyone have one like this, or seen one like this?

This is what it looks like underneath:

and then it slides apart. Not sure if it's supposed to do that or not:

    Bookmark   March 10, 2007 at 6:20PM
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The sewing machine is neat! My MIL had one like that and she sold it for a new, awful Montgomery Ward model...
Don't know what you want to's early 20th century...maybe 1910 to 1925. Oak...looks like it's a treadle works....and in good shape.
Before you do too much messing, oil it.
The table is not as old as the sewing machine....maybe 1940 to '60? It's a dining table for a small are missing the leaves. It folds up into a small space and opens out to seat 6 or 8 for dinner....think that thing is a fold down leg to support the middle.
Linda C

    Bookmark   March 10, 2007 at 10:33PM
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Thanks Linda. I was just curious to find out approx. age of the sewing machine. I was coming up with all types of info on singer machines, but nothing on this one. I couldn't even find one like it on Ebay, and you can find just about anything on Ebay. : )
All of these years, I thought that table was some sort of writing desk, but I knew there was something missing because there's hinge marks? or some kind of marks on the back of it. Do you know of any pics online of a table like it so I could see what it would look like with the leaves. I sure do wish I had the leaves to it, because it would come in handy in my dining room right now. Oh well, thanks again Linda for the info.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2007 at 12:58AM
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Now I'm feeling pretty stupid!! It expands over 6ft. Here it is fully expanded:

Now if I could just talk my FIL into making me some leaves. : )

Thanks again Linda for all your help!!

    Bookmark   March 11, 2007 at 10:40AM
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Start with the link below. There are lots of old machine lovers there. If you click on the US made machines, you'll see Franklin listed. There are also yahoo groups for treadle machine users and collectors. It's pretty hard to kill a treadle and they are still very popular.


Here is a link that might be useful: Needlebar

    Bookmark   March 12, 2007 at 4:54AM
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That table's pretty cool! Are you sure the original leaves aren't stashed somewhere?- I guess if you don't look too close they would just look like boards.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2007 at 5:12AM
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Here are some photos of one on Craig's list.


Here is a link that might be useful: Franklin Treadle

    Bookmark   July 3, 2007 at 12:43AM
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I have one almost identical to yours! It belonged to my grandmother, Myrtle Pharis. My grandfather got it for her on their 1st Wedding anniversay. I think that was probably about 1928. I have never seen any one like hers. This is just exciting to see that someone has one like it. Have you found out anything more about it? If you want I can send you a picture of it. I have it displayed in my bedroom.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2007 at 9:56PM
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Follow-up to damascusannie....I have not yet posted pictures of my Franklin, but the one I referred to (posted by countrygal68) can be found on the GardenWeb site, located on the first page of: Need info on Franklin sewing machine...


    Bookmark   August 12, 2008 at 12:03PM
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Ok, Joesr: the machine shown was made by the Domestic Sewing Machine Company and sold by Sears Roebuck. The decals pattern is called "Scarab" by collectors. According to "The Encyclopedia of Antique Sewing Machines" by Charles B. Law, this model was sold from the 1910s through the early 1930s. However, that particular cabinet was sold in the early 1920s. This is known as a parlor cabinet and was Sear's top-of-the-line model in the early 20s.

If your's is in comparable condition to the one shown, it has a fair amount of value. Here in Wisconsin, where treadles are common ($25-50 will usually get you a pretty nice one), I'd expect to pay $100-125 for this machine. Depending on where you live, it could be worth a bit more than that, but probably not more than $200. In this case, the value is almost completely in the cabinet.

Domestic was founded in 1864 in Norwalk, OH and continued to make sewing machines until they were purchased by White in 1924. White continued to make this model after the merger, so my friends, Katie who is doing White research and Kelly who is researching Domestic, are in constant communication trying to sort out just when a particular head was made.


    Bookmark   August 12, 2008 at 1:45PM
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Hi, I have franklin just like the one in the picture, cabinet and all.I was wondering were the serial numbers are on it so I can order a new belt and an owners manual and learn how to operate it. Any help that you could give me would deeply appreciated. Thankyou for your tme
Sincerely Steve

    Bookmark   March 2, 2011 at 4:03PM
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Chemocurl zn5b/6a Indiana

Hi Steve Crum,

I'm pretty sure that the lady who has the site at the link below can help you with both things. There is an email link for her in the red print at the top on the page.


Here is a link that might be useful: The Treadler's Village

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 12:43PM
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Your sewing machine reminds me of the old treadle Singer machine that my mother inherited from my dad's great aunt. It was from the late 1800s and supposedly that aunt sewed a vest with it for the original Tom Thumb.

It is an easy machine to thread and sew with. Do you have any of the bobbins? That is the bobbin winder on the lower right. Our machine had a bobbin case too, if I recall correctly.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 3:06AM
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