The Largest Sewing Machine in the World (1880)

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From Design and Work magazine, June 5th 1880

Courtesy of Dave King


Mention has already been made of the many modifications of the Singer sewing machines to adapt them to certain kinds of work. The latest of these we must allude to more prominently, and introduce the reader to the largest sewing machine in the world.

This gigantic stitcher has just been completed, and we find it described in Great Industries of Great Britain. The machine weighs over four tons, and in some respects of new design, using much simplicity of construction with great strength of parts. It is adapted for general manufacturing purposes of the heavier sort, although specially made for stitching cotton belting, an article that is just now taking the market as a cheap and serviceable institution for gearing and the ordinary leather belting.

The material used is of great strength toughness, and is sewn together in plies or layers up to an inch in thickness. The belting in being sewn together is passed through heavy feed rollers, 9 in. in diameter, and over 8 feet in length, getting stretched and pressed in the process.

There are two needles at work, with two shuttles, and the shuttles can be removed from the bottom without disturbing the overlying plies of belting.

The rollers between which the work passes are actuated by reversible worm and cam motions, and the machine has, in addition to these roller-feeds, what is known as a top-feed motion, suitable for a lighter class of work. The stitch, as in the ordinary sewing machines, can be easily adjusted from 1/8 in. upwards, and the pressure of the rollers on the work passing through the machine can be regulated at the will of the operatives.

The machine, which is driven by steam, has been made for a manufacturing firm in Liverpool.