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Kenmore 158.650

December 7, 2015

A new sewing machine followed me home yesterday. I absolutely did not need another machine, but it was only $30 and was super clean, so I bought it even though it didn’t have a manual or accessories.

Kenmore 158.650

It is a tank of a machine. 40 lbs — I weighed it — and look how stripped down and minimal the exterior is. That was part of its appeal!

It makes a beautiful straight stitch but is almost as loud as a tank, too. This week I’ll attempt to diagnose what is causing all the noise. It has a single cam in it, so I also need to check out what that does and try to locate a plain zig zag cam for it.

There’s already a first project planned for this baby, too.

Kenmore 158 back

If anyone has any experience with a machine like this, or knows what this dial on the back does, I’d love to hear about it. Sears is out of manuals for this machine.

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18 Comments leave one →
  1. December 7, 2015 8:24 pm

    I did a bit of online searching for you and your machine looks a lot like this one:
    http://www.sewusa.com/Sewing_Machine_Manuals/Kenmore_Manuals/Kenmore_65_85_1503_1653_Instruction_Manual.htm

    I hope this helps.

  2. December 7, 2015 8:24 pm

    Oops, forgot to include this link which tells you how the Kenmores are numbered:
    http://www.sewusa.com/Sewing_Machine_Manuals/kenmore_Sewing_Machines.htm

    • December 9, 2015 10:08 pm

      Thank you twice! The sewing sisterhood is awesome.

      • December 10, 2015 3:46 am

        My pleasure. I also have a vintage Kenmore with all the embroidery and buttonhole cams. Just love it. Nothing makes a buttonhole like a vintage Kenmore.

  3. KristenI permalink
    December 7, 2015 9:02 pm

    Beautiful! I’m a sucker for vintage machines. I might have the file for you from a couple enthusiast sites I belong to. Seeing if I can find it on there for you. Cheers, Kristen

  4. Laura Spike permalink
    December 7, 2015 10:46 pm

    The machine will be quieter if you put a carpet square under it, Magic! I even put one under my Bernina.

    Sears bought machines from a number of companies, including White Westinghouse. You might check their website for machines that look like yours.

  5. December 8, 2015 1:02 am

    looks like a tension dial to me

    • December 9, 2015 10:11 pm

      Thanks, Julie. I now have a manual and that dial is part of the buttonhole procedure. Looks like I need to get a Kenmore buttonholer to try it out.

  6. December 8, 2015 4:06 pm

    Very nice! I can’t resist an orphan machine either.

    • December 9, 2015 10:13 pm

      They should go where they are appreciated, and I’m afraid no one will love them like I will 🙂

  7. December 11, 2015 7:21 am

    So cool! One can always find another home for another sewing machine!

  8. December 20, 2015 10:29 am

    If the Mom from Lost in Space (June Lockheart?) had a machine, it would look like that one! How goes it? If you oil it everywhere and run it without a load it may get quieter and faster.

  9. Shie permalink
    August 28, 2016 9:27 pm

    Did you ever figure this machine out? I have the same one and could use some help.

  10. Anonymous permalink
    November 8, 2016 3:11 am

    This machine has a set of cams that works in it, I have the same machine, but did not get the cams either , but lady who had my machine said she still has the cams and will give them to me, I just haven’t made an attempt to go get them.

  11. Cheryl permalink
    February 27, 2017 2:21 am

    Did you have any luck with this machine? I just so happened across one myself today!

    • March 1, 2017 2:05 pm

      Cheryl, it seems a little noisy to me, but has a nice stitch and I do have it in rotation with my other machines. I use them all, so no one gets hurt feelings.

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