The new-to-me Singer 411G came with spool pins in a horrible state. One was broken, the other one was sitting askew. A quick web search reveals that each pin consists of four parts – the actual pin, a rubber spacer, a plastic washer, and a spring nut. Replacing it requires removing the plate with the information on decorative stitches. The best description of the process and a list of alternative solutions can be found on this page. If you want to keep your machine close to original condition, then you can stop reading my article right now, and head over to the above link. I dislike the idea of replacing the bad design with the same bad design; I wanted steel spool pins.
This is what the pins on my machine looked like:
Here is what the pins I made look like:
The base is turned of cherry, the pins are made out of steel wire salvaged from a lawn sign some candidate planted on my front yard during the last election. The wire is 3/16″ in diameter (just under 5mm). The pins are friction-fitted into the wooden bases (I drilled the holes slightly undersized). The metal is sanded and polished to mirror finish.
The pins are held in the machine lid by a bit of hot glue. If I ever want to remove the pins, I’d have to heat the lid up using a heat gun or a blow dryer.