Question about Kenmore Drop-In Bobbin 505S-21BH Mechanical Sewing Machine

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Kenmore 4 stitch model 385 1233280 serial #33001940

My machine needs oil it's seizing up...I'm not sure where to put the oil can you help...

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017


SOURCE: Kenmore sewing machine 15343

I had this problem but have resolved it (for the most part) by lowering the needle down into the fabric before beginning to sew.

Posted on Aug 20, 2008

  • 16 Answers

SOURCE: How do I do a stretch stitch?

The bes way to hem a t-shirt on a household machine is to use a double needle, straight stitch. You will see two straight stitches on top and zig zag on the back. Just make sure the zig zag catched the top of the hem.

Posted on Aug 02, 2009

  • 5 Answers

SOURCE: feed dogs aren't advancing the fabric

try turning the pressure up on foot

Posted on Sep 18, 2009

  • 1 Answer

SOURCE: Feed dog lever not working on my Kenmore 385 24 stitch machine

I surfed around this site for various suggestions, finally took the bottom plate off and cleaned and oiled all the parts along that rod that goes right across (think it's a drive bar that rotates). Ran the machine without thread in for a few minutes to let the oil soak in. Machine now works fine.

Posted on Oct 07, 2009

  • 15 Answers


Here you can find some manuals (couldn't fidn your machine but maybe there could be a similiar one)

Also you can buy from these websites :

I hope this helps...

Posted on Oct 14, 2009

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Manual for kenmore sewing machine 158 1784183

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Make Model manual
*may not find the exact same model but similar models operate and thread the same--some have more stitches and accessories than others"

Your Kenmore is a keeper (wish I still had mine...) Be sure to clean and oil frequently to keep it running smoothly. It may seize due to old oil drying out. Below is how I treat a seized machine, but the oiling procedure should work for you.

Wheel on right side that controls the needle up and down is very tight...

Nov 27, 2017 | Kenmore Sewing Machines

2 Answers

How do I oil 8 stitch Kenmore sewing machine

LIft the top off the machine. There usually are two screws to loosen and the top cover will come off. There are oil ports by the moving parts. You will see small holes where a drop of oil should be put in. Then, wipe clean, close and tilt the machine back of show the bottom moving parts. Also, find the moving parts and a drop of oil on all ports to be oiled. Wipe clean and your machine should be oiled efficiently. Make sure the machine running parts are metal.

Oct 07, 2017 | Kenmore Sewing Machines

1 Answer

Kenmore sewing machine 158.1784 zigzag repair

Most likely it has seized due to lack of regular oiling. The issue will begin with one problem but over time will eventually develop in other areas, ie the feed dogs, other selectors, the needle bar, etc.

Wheel on right side that controls the needle up and down is very tight...

Aug 22, 2017 | Kenmore Sewing Machines

1 Answer

I have turned my dial to the zigzag option, yet it is still sewing a straight stitch. How can I fix this problem?

UPDATE: It appears that your machine is computerized. Probably best to take it for service. Oiling will most likely damage your machine and do nothing toward resolving the issue.


Please provide the make & model of your machine. If it is a mechanical machine, most likely the machine has seized so that the needle does not do the appropriate swing for zig-zag or decorative stitches. A good cleaning and oiling with fresh, good quality sewing machine oil will take care of a mechanical that is seized.

Will not zigzag or decorative stitches New to these newer plastic style...


Jul 31, 2016 | Sewing Machines

1 Answer

30 stitch kenmore....model # 385 1884180 serial # 72004581 having problems with the thread bunching up on back side of material. not sure if my settings are right. lost manual for my...

It really depends on the type of material you are sewing. But most machines are set at around 4 from the factory. remember right to tighten, left to loosen.

Mar 11, 2011 | Kenmore Sewing Machines

1 Answer

Need a straight stitich How to make the machine do a straight stich...not reponding to settings

not sure which model you have but you should have a stitch length control and a stitch width control. locate the stitch width control and set it to zero.

if you have done this and the machine continues to zig zag the zig zag mechanism inside the machine is most likely seized up. try lubricating all linkages inside and move the control lever a few times to see if it will free up.

if not you may need a tech to service the machine.


Jul 28, 2009 | Kenmore Sewing Machines

1 Answer

Model # invalid on parts/accessories sites

Make sure that you are not mistaking a 6 for an 8 and vise versa

Jul 15, 2009 | Kenmore 12912

1 Answer


Those round items are more than likely stitch cams. I had an older model similar to this and my machine would run zig-zag or straight stitch without any cam installed.

Being that your machine is older, I'm wondering how long it has been since it has been cleaned and thoroughly oiled, These old machines tend to be forgotten for long periods of time and the oil dries out causing the machine to seize. It is important to keep them oiled EVEN when not used. To avoid damaging your machine, give it some well-appreciated TLC. You'll be amazed at how well it will run!

Wheel on right side that controls the needle up and down is very tight...

Dec 30, 2017 | Kenmore 15516 Mechanical Sewing Machine

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