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Singer 500A Slant-O-Matic


Manufactured: 1961, Anderson, South Carolina
Serial Number: NC506137
Needle: Standard 15x1
Bobbins: Singer Class 66

Mechanism type: Rotary round bobbin
Feed: can be lowered (throat plate is raised)
Feet: slant shank

With original carry case

Singer model 500 A Slant-O-Matic

This model Slant-O-Matic should come with an original "O" cam for zig-zag stitches.  Do not run your machine without a cam in it.  :)



The logo on the case.

The case for the 500a that came with the machine.

Click here for selected pages from the instruction manual

The Singer slant-needle model machines were the last all-metal gear machines that Singer made.  Although the serial numbers for these machines were issued by the company starting in 1951, most of the machines, if not all, were made between 1960 and 1962.

 This one is in like-new condition, and like other 500As I have owned, sews a stitch that is very fine and even "delicate" in the spacing and accuracy.  The machine itself is not delicate at all - the 500A is the top of the Singer line of Slant-O-Matic models, and the finer engineering is evident in the sewing.  There are more built-in stitches than the other slant models as well. My only "complaint" about the 500A machines is that the stitch selector knobs are a little bit finicky.  I've owned three of these machines, and each of them has needed care when selecting the stitch patterns that are built in, or the combinations of these stitches.  They are not fragile at all, but before sewing the stitch, make sure each of the two knobs has "clicked" into the correct place.

This machine model is sometimes called the Rocketeer, due to it's then "space age" shape.  It is the last all metal gear-driven machine Singer built, and they were manufactured from 1960 to 1963.  They truly don't make them like this anymore!

Sample stitches from the 500A are below:

Below, using twin needles on the 500A machine

Below is a sample of all of the "normal" stitches on this machine.  These are the stitches that are possible without using the separate decorative cams, but by choosing settings on the stitch dial.  There are also many more variations of the stitches shown below, accomplished by changing the stitch width and number of stitches.


Below are some of the decorative stitches, made with the black "top hat" cams (which are also used on the 400 class machines):



The accessories that came with this machine, and that are listed in the manual:

note : the part number and part origin are in ( ) : G.B.=Great Britain


  • general purpose throat plate 

  • general purpose presser foot (unmarked)

  • straight stitch throat plate (172201 G.B.)

  • straight stitch presser foot (170071-001 USA)

  • special purpose presser foot (161167 G.B.)

  • button sewing foot (161168 G.B)

  • zipper foot (161166 G.B.)

  • seam guide (161172 G.B.)

  • foot hemmer (161185 G.B.)

  • multi-slotted binder (161420 G.B)

  • ruffler (161561 G.B.)

  • stitch cams - #1 (172185), #2 (172187),Cam # 3 (172189), #4 (172190), #5 (172191)

  • looped lint brush (black bristles)

  • small screwdriver (120378 USA)

  • 4 metal class 66 bobbins

  • pkg of 6 Singer needles, marked West Germany


The set of accessories that came with the machine.

I also purchased:

Buttonhole Attachment (160743 slant shank, complete)


  • original and complete buttonhole attachment instructions (folded and bent in places)

  • maroon plastic box to hold all (treasure box)

  • buttonholer (black with white knob)

  • metal templates 5/8" straight, 1 and 1/16" straight, 13/16" straight, 5/16" straight, 1 and 1/16" keyhole

  • feed cover plate

  • slotted clamping screw

  • large looped screwdriver


and an extra box of Singer buttonhole templates (160668) that should contain:

  • 3/8" straight

  • 1/2" straight

  • 5/8" keyhole

  • 15/16" straight (this one is missing)

Below is a scan of a couple of buttonholes I did with this attachment.  It was much easier than I expected, and I have to say that the buttonholes are easier to complete than what I can do on my Singer 6012 with the automatic buttonhole function.  The loose threads on the edges are from my trimming, and not from the attachment.  I could have let the first stitches go over the thread ends for a neater effect.  Also, I could have gone around twice, making a fuller buttonhole.


In addition, I purchased the newer Automatic Buttonholer (161829) to fit this machine, and below are the buttonholes from that attachment.

From left to right, a straight buttonhole, an eyelet or keyhole buttonhole, two eyelets (for lacing or ribbon), a purled buttonhole and a two-needle buttonhole.  These were all completed on 100% cotton (2 layers), with Star 100% Egyptian cotton 50 wt. thread in a size 12 needle.  A finer thread and needle might have been better suited to the two-needle buttonhole, depending on the fabric.  I also would adjust the spacing for the opening if I were sewing these for a garment.


Below are the cover and one page from the manual:



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