Last Updated on 6 months by Susan Mayrich
The answer to what is a mechanical sewing machine is at the name itself. This sewing machine does not rely on a computer, which means buttons are also absent.
We will compare it to a computerized sewing machine in more detail below, so you can decide which sewing machine to get. But before anything else, you might also be interested in knowing what is a treadle sewing machine.
One can say that the treadle is the oldest machine type, so feel free to read about it to appreciate mechanical and computerized models nowadays.
What Is A Mechanical Sewing Machine? Is It Worth It?
A mechanical sewing machine does not rely on a microcomputer, which means the sewer controls it mechanically, hence the name. There are no buttons, and you set the mechanical machine by turning knobs and dials.
And because it’s not relying on advanced technologies, the mechanical sewing machine is more basic, especially with the stitches it can do. You won’t also find a lot of settings to customize when sewing with a mechanical sewing machine.
For example, there is no needle up/down position in mechanical sewing machines. Therefore, you will need to manually turn the handle to lift the needle if you release your foot from the pedal and the needle is at the bottom.
Affordable and low maintenance
But while others can look at this simplicity of the mechanical sewing machine as a disadvantage, some users prefer this very characteristic of the mechanical machine. Fewer electronic parts mean the mechanical sewing machine is also easier to maintain and at a lower cost.
What Is The Difference Between A Computerized And Mechanical Sewing Machine?
Mechanical sewing machine
- Use dials and knobs for controls
- Basic and straightforward with usage and features
- Is capable of simple sewing stitches
- The feature limitations make it less precise for sewing
- Doing elaborate projects will be difficult
- Affordable and cheap to repair
Computerized sewing machine
- Use buttons for controls
- Often equipped with advanced features and stitches
- The user can adjust various settings for precise sewing
- Can embroider and do elaborate and decorative stitches
- Highly versatile for the projects it can do
- Quite pricey and tricky to repair
- Can be overwhelming for non-tech-savvy people
Who invented the first computerized sewing machine?
Did you know that Singer made the first computerized sewing machine in the world? The brand manufactured the Singer Quantum XL-1000 in 1994, and it is the first in the market that used built-in memory cards.
Are Mechanical Sewing Machines Electric?
Mechanical sewing machines are electric, but one can also consider antiques and treadle sewing machines as mechanical because they need the constant intervention of the sewer for their mechanisms to work.
However, modern sewing machines nowadays often run on electricity, whether they are mechanical or computerized. The only defining characteristic between the two that you can easily remember is that mechanical sewing machines are more basic.
On the other hand, electric sewing machines are packed with features, including automatic settings, eliminating the need for constant human intervention during sewing.
There is also another type of sewing machine that runs on batteries called the handheld sewing machine. This feature allows portability since you won’t need a plug, as seen in how to use a handheld sewing machine.
Is Sewing Machine A Mechanical Device?
The sewing machine is an intricate mechanical device capable of sewing fabric pieces together. But as technology advances, modern models now use a computer, which makes them capable of various automatic features, stitches, and even intricate and precise work that embroidery and quilting become easy.
Consider reading about how does a sewing machine works that discuss the specific work of every sewing machine part.
What Is An Electric Sewing Machine?
From the name itself, an electric sewing machine relies on electricity to work instead of a treadle sewing machine that depends on how the sewer works the treadle motion. With electric machines, you only guide the fabric, and the machine will sew it for you.
Are you interested in how many watts a sewing machine uses? Read more about its electric consumption if it’s one of your considerations before using an electronic machine.
You’ll even find out if sewing machines can run on solar power.
Which Is Better Mechanical Or Computerized Sewing Machine?
Selecting between a mechanical sewing machine and a computerized sewing machine depends on the user and their expected usage on a sewing machine.
Get a mechanical sewing machine if
- You’re on a budget
- You’ll only do basic sewing and stitches
- You’re not that fond or comfortable with technology
- You’re a beginner
Get a computerized sewing machine if
- You can invest in a pricier sewing machine
- You expect to do intricate sewing projects easily and quickly
- You don’t mind/it’s easy for you to try various technological features
- You’re experienced with sewing and want to try different new techniques
Consider reading how to buy a sewing machine to help you further in deciding.
And that’s it! We just learned what is a mechanical sewing machine, which is a buttonless and basic type of machine.
You set it with knobs or dials, and it has fewer stitches and features than a computerized machine. Therefore, choosing among these two machine types depends on which you find more convenient for your sewing needs.