Monday, August 20, 2012

Necchi or Alco? (UPDATED 26 August)


  In the thrift shop the other day, I saw what I considered to be an anomoly - a sewing machine with the names Necchi and Alco, both on the same machine.  I had been under the impression that the Alco and Necchi names were connected through the same distributor, but this is the first time I have seen one with both names on it.

  This one is a 524FB (FlatBed), made in Taiwan. Sales documents that accompany the machine indicate that it was purchased in May, 2000 at one of those "Liquidation Sales" in Florida.



 I thought the 524FB was considerably older than that, my old Blue Book shows production beginning in 1991 and models usually become obsolete in about 7 years.  I guess this one could have been old, unsold stock and that's why it was dumped at a motel sale.


  This machine was touted as a "Sew and Serge" machine.  The "serge" function is merely a zig zag or overcast stitch plus a bolt-on cutter that is powered by the needlebar to give the impression of an overlock stitch.

UPDATE:

  The machine was sewing okay but making a buzzing sound that I didn't like. I removed the end cover, thinking that the motor bearings might be bad. I took off the belt and ran the motor by itself and it didn't buzz. When I put the belt back on, I noticed that one of the motor mounting studs was in a position where the cog belt was rubbing against it.


  Repositioning the motor cured the problem.

29 comments:

Michelle said...

You've heard of Nelco sewing machines? That is a joined effort of Necchi and Alco. Maybe they just couldn't decide, so they put both names on it. ;)

bridal fabric said...

You've heard of Nelco sewing machines? That is a joined effort of Necchi and Alco. Maybe they just couldn't decide, so they put both names on it. ;)

Brian@brother xl 2600i said...

Hi!I never heard of those sewing machines but I like vintage.My mom has an old singer sewing machine she bought on 1970's or 80's.

Edward said...

Thanks for your downloadable repair manuals!

Claire Pamplin said...

Hi! Can you help me with any information on "International" brand sewing machines? I am interested in restoring my grandmother's old machine and possibly using it. Its model or serial number is S4335. It was made in Japan, I suspect in the 1950s.

Thank you.

Claire Pamplin
claire.pamplin@gmail.com

Michelle said...

We have had this type of belt that 'buzzed' or made some other sound, and we put a little bit of baby powder on the inside of the belt, and it quiets it right down also.

Liz Thomas Farmer's Insurance Agency said...

My mother purchased a machine in 1973 all metal. It has an ALCO metal plack on it with a sticker that says: Designed guarantgeed enginered by Necchi-Alco Importers Distributors

Hope that helps
Liz

Anonymous said...

Hi, I have a necchi Alco A709-4. Is there anyone on this site that could tell me anything about my machine. As I can not find a manual for it anywhere. Thanks

Jenni said...

I just acquired a Necchi Alco 709-2L this morning and, other than the fact that the foot control appears to be from the 40s or 50s, I have no idea of it's age or any information about it. This blog is one of the few sites online that appears to know anything at all about Alco machines. Can you help me?

Michelle said...

Jenni, please email me with an email address I can respond to. Your blogger profile does not have a return email address. I would love to help you, but I can't if I can't reply to you. Michelle

Old Man Bob said...

I am a former employee of Allyn International. We were distributors of Necchi for North America from 1966 until 2011.
First: Nelco had nothing to do with Necchi after 1963 when Leon Jolson gave up the distributorship. He WAS the Necchi/Elna distributor before then and combined the two name to put on Japanese machines he brought in and sold, implying they were from the named factories.
Second: The Alco name was created by the owner of Allyn Int. to market machines made in Asia and distributed by Allyn.
The two companies never had a relationship in business or marketing.

Anonymous said...

What would a 1954 necchi be valued at?

Anonymous said...

It's in
Great condition

Ed Lamoureux said...

Concerning the value of a 1954 Necchi: please see my January 2009 post, "Value of an Old Sewing Machine" -Ed

Ed Lamoureux said...

Old Man Bob, Thanks for commenting. However, it still doesn't explain how "Necchi" and "Alco" appear on the same machine. If Allyn is the only the distributor, and Allyn created the Alco name, it seems even odder that both names would appear on the same machine. - Ed

polly said...

my mum has a necchi lycia that she loves but it stopped working so she payed someone to fix it and they did a very bad job she lives in penzance can anyone advise on were to get it fixed

Anonymous said...

I have a Necchi-Alco A905. My parent's gave it to me used when I was 11 or 12 years old. That was 40 years ago. I don't know how old it was, but I need an Operator's Manual. Can someone help me out here? My email address is dtrogstad@roadrunner.com

Ed Lamoureux said...

An anonymous poster asked, "I just bought a necchi-alco 695 model 300 and I'm having a hard to figuring out what type of needles to buy for it. If you have any idea or have the manual could you email me at......"

Since the poster didn't leave a name, I assume it is just phishing for my email address, so I don't respond to requests that don't contain a name

The answer is, the Necchi and Alco lines do not require any special needles, the needles you find at the local fabric store should work just fine. Type 15x1 or 705 in sizes from 9 to 18.

That's the general answer, a more detailed answer depends on the type of sewing you do and the thread you are using. I use a universal point size 14 needle and Coats Dual Duty thread for just about everything. If the work I'm doing is heavy, I go to a size 16 or 18. If you are sewing something filmy, like silk, the smaller needles are preferable. My wife, the quilter, insists that anything larger than size 11 puts gigantic holes in her work but then she uses size 18 in her longarm quilting machine - go figure.

Schmetz offers a free pdf booklet that describes needles and their uses, "ABC of Household Needles" at http://www.schmetz.com/en/products/hobby-sewing/patchwork-quilting/special-features/

-Ed

HooliganHooker said...

Thank you so much for posting this!! I was having alot of trouble identifying the model of mine, although it doesn't say Alco on it, it's an otherwose perfect match!

Anonymous said...

I have an Alco sewing machine. The manual id's it as A709-3 Queen. It is in a cabinet with drawers etc. I had it cleaned about 5 years ago but rarely use it although it does many nice things including embroidery. Therefore I am interested in selling it but have no idea of its value. Can anyone help?

Anonymous said...

Ed, Have you ever heard of a Necchi Isabella machine ?
I cannot find any info on it.
It looks like a 3/4 Supernova BF, dressed in the same green body and cream cover. Is it for real or just a toy ?
Thanks in advance...
Richard (fellow upholsterer)
Montreal, Quebec

Anonymous said...

Ther is one exactly like you are searching for on Lespacs
Annonce classée PAC no. 28030866
http://cache.lespac.com/1/thumb/23/9744323/113491754.jpg

Shane Gutierrez said...

I have a nelco. JA 38 it was my grandfather's it is the best sewing machine I have ever used! Unfortunately the belt has broken and I am having a very hard time finding a new one. Anyone know where I can get one? I live in a small town with limited places to look...

Jen said...

I have a Necchi-Alco A909. I'm trying to figure out when it was made, but as to the other question, it was my understanding that the Necchi-Alco machines were Necchi machines produced in Japan and distributed by Allyn. Apparently they ceased Italian production of Necchis in the '60s. My machine says Alco at the top, and Necchi-Alco at the bottom.

Umm Aminah said...

How much do you think this machine is worth? I see one on craig's list for $70.

Old Man Bob said...

"Old Man Bob, Thanks for commenting. However, it still doesn't explain how "Necchi" and "Alco" appear on the same machine. If Allyn is the only the distributor, and Allyn created the Alco name, it seems even odder that both names would appear on the same machine. - Ed "
Graphics on machines ordered from factories in Asia were changed at times. I remember the last shipments of 524FB's had both brands on there. That would have been the call of the owner and others. The 'Alco' brand was always keep going in case Allyn lost the Necchi agreement, all our machines would have been switched to that name.

Anonymous said...

I have a little baby blue in color Necchi-Alco sewing machine that I would like information on. It says Allyn International, Deluxe, and some numbers stamped in underneath the machine 1240 and JC23. Grandmother won this machine in a grocery store drawing in Ozark, Arkansas but not sure what year. Thanks for any information. Cherokeehillsok@yahoo.com

Ann Mwangi said...

Shane I have a machine made in Japan that says Alco no other name and when I pull up the machine it has the code j-a38 I need help fixing it because for some kind of reason the thread is building up.

Deanna Stalboerger said...

I have alco k-55
Dkc_1919@yahoo.com
Can someone help