Monday, February 6, 2012

Pfaff "Dial-A-Stitch" Sewing Machines

Marvel of design and engineering. The Pfaff 332 is an all metal cylinder bed machine with flat bed attachment and built-in embroidery stitches, as well as straight and zig-zag.

Before the advent of built-in embroidery, sewing machines had multiple cams that would be installed to sew any number of different stitches. Each cam would give you access to a different embroidery stitch.

The Pfaff 332 came with a built-in cam system they called "Dial-A-Stitch" which meant you didn't have to carry any more cams. Just turn the appropriate knob or dial in the right combination and you had access to a multitude of embroidery stitches.

It was quite a complicated set of knob and dial positions. Pfaff devised a wheel computer that would enable the user to pick an embroidery stitch and determine the corresponding dial setting.

These Pfaff 332 and similar sewing machines always remind me of old Navy battleships, tough and unsinkable.

If you run across one of these, the most common issue is a gummed-up cam system. Old oil residue in the cam system needs to be cleaned out carefully so as not to damage the delicate cam mechanism.

Pfaff 230

This video shows a Pfaff 230 a flat bed version of Pfaff's Dial-A-Stitch machine.


  1. How exactly do I clean out the gummed up oil in my Pfaff 332 cam system? Some of the parts seem to be working but I can't get it to do embroidery!
    Thanks Ted

    1. I use a penetrating oil spray. There are many on the market. I sometimes use a heat gun as well to help the process along. Don't force any parts - let the oil sit and do its magic... Good luck.

  2. pfaff 332 the button hole lever F seams loose/sloppy ! how can I adjust or repair it? Seams very difficult to work on!
    Thank's again Ted