Tuesday, November 1, 2011


This Stradivaro sewing machine marks the beginning of Japanese domination of post WWII  manufacturing.

Built-in fancy stitches, forward and reverse. Singer couldn't keep up with cheap Japanese mass-production.

I haven't been able to find much information on this beauty, in fact, I've only seen one other Strad selling on eBay since I purchased this one over a year ago.

I've ben told they were made by Toyota, although this one has no markings to indicate this is true. Toyota did manufacture sewing machines that sold well in the US.

Remember the old 1960s Toyota Corollas? Didn't they look like big sewing machines? They were as cheap as a sewing machine though, and small as a sewing machine.

Actually this two-tone machine reminds me of the American cars of days gone by. The "futuristic" control knobs and the pearl and metallic paint, all reminiscent of the opulence of big gas-guzzling American automobiles of the 50s.

Japanese brand and model names of the time were supposed to sound non-Japanese.  Stradivaro - what is it? Italian? Definitely not Japanese.


  1. So glad I found this post! I have a Stradivaro as well and have searched endlessly for info on it. I was wanting to sell it but I did not know the value. Maybe what I should do is find someone to service it and use it. It could use a tune up. Do you know anymore info/resources on this sewing machine?

  2. Hi Grace, I never did get a manual for my Stradivaro, but it was easy to figure out. Mine just needed a small adjustment and she ran well through all the fancy stitches. Strong machine. Depending on condition these can be worth as much as $300. Get it tuned up at your local sewing machine shop and use it. It will last forever...

  3. Do you have any idea where I can get a bobbin case fcr a Stradivaro? I want to buy one that is for sale for $40 including the table but it has no bobbin case or bobbin. Thanks.

  4. Hello Tomas,
    I need help with my Stradivaro. I can't seem to get it threaded right. I have the top tension all the w2ay loose and it still is so tight it breaks the thread. It has an unfamiliar thread guide just left of the tension knob. I went thru the top guide, then thru tension disks, then thru the wire spring then down under the left guide, then up thru the thing that goes up & down when you sew, then thru bottom guide and thru the needle. Do you have any suggestions?

  5. I rescued mine from a roadside trash pile about 25 years ago. I keep it oiled and use it occasionally. Sad to say there is a bit of surface rust on some parts, but nothing serious. I am currently working on a sail, and though the work is on the upper limit of this machine's motor, it manages well through 4-5 layers of 4 oz. sail cloth. By the way, you said that you had heard they were made by Toyota, that is correct; my machine has TOYOTA molded into its frame. Mine is a Model TZ-20.

  6. My Stradivaro is the basic model without the fancy stitches and is a Class 15 machine. These Japanese machines were clones of the Singer 15 models so a replacement bobbin case would be a class 15, same as the bobbins. This the first clone that I've come across with a built in oil reservoir and it's quite the tank, weighing in at 65lbs.

  7. After reading this blog, I decided to purchase a Stradivaro from an estate sale a few days ago. The one I now have is virtually identical to UCanSew2's, with the exception of the large silver knob/dial pictured on the front just to the right of the stitch length dial; the one I own doesn't have this. Mine came with an original manual, and I was able to thread the machine and take it for a test run shortly thereafter. Not bad for a guy that has never even tried to use a sewing machine previously. This thing runs very smooth and is obviously well-made.

    Does anybody know what make and model these are patterned after (Kenmore?), so that I can source new parts like belts or bulbs down the road?