Following the demise of the Tailor Bird Sewing Machine Company the machine was redesigned and produced by Universal Sewing Machines Ltd whose headquarters and factory were at 27 - 33 Hurst Street, Birmingham.

This version badged SL features the same basic layout of the Tailor Bird including the same walking foot mechanism, slide plates and almost identical shuttle but has a electric motor and foot pedal.

The company further refined the design in the Sewmaid which has more angular castings, simple bobbin winder and uses a plastic shuttle.


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 Universal SL

Universal SL Serial No. E4035.

This machine was probably made in the mid to late 1950's.

The body is cast aluminium with Universal cast into the Arm and Unisomac British Made on the pillar. The castings are quite rough and are overpainted silver giving a quite stylish effect.

The 1/15th HP electric motor made by the company is mounted to the rear of the pillar. It drives a large flywheel and is controlled by a neat metal foot-pedal.

The machine has two prongs and thumb catch which hold it into the thin plywood base. The cover is hardboard with a thick decorative card outer and reinforced at the corners. It's held in place with two latches.

Universal Foot Pedal

The machines heritage can be clearly seen the Slide plates and style of bobbin winder are classic Tailor Bird features.

Universal Slide Plates
Universal Bobbin Winder.jpg
Busy Bee Company Trade Mark