Got Oil?

Posted by on October 10, 2017

Oiling your TinLizzie18 machine should be part of your regular sewing routine.  Sewing machines have moving parts that will last longer and function more efficiently if they are lubricated.  TinLizzie18s have a wicking system that moves the oil to various moving parts, requiring fewer oiling locations.  One oiling spot is at the top of the machine, above the needle.  The other is on the bed of the machine and has a dip stick to measure the oil level.  When the dip stick is free of oil it is time to oil both locations.  Add four or five drops when the dip stick is free of oil.  On the back of the machine, on top near the hand wheel is a rubber plug.  This is a less frequent oiling spot to be oiled only when there is a squeak or grinding in that area.  Remove the plug and add only one drop at a time until the sound is gone.


When the machine sits for a while without being used, check the dip stick.  If it is dry add four to five drops of oil and run the machine on manual mode for about 20 minutes to get the wicking action moving again.  If there is oil, run the machine without adding oil.

You should use only oil designed especially for sewing machines. It is made from a white mineral oil or synthetic oil that is clear and has no smell. If the oil becomes discolored or smells rancid, toss it out.  When machine oil is good, it has a light viscosity or thickness.  It will not collect on the machine’s parts, but allows moving parts to smoothly move and not rust.

Note that the oil can stain fabric.  Beware not to over oil your machine or oil it while over the quilt on the frame.  It may drip on your quilt or stain your thread in the bobbin.  If you notice a puddle of oil on the frame or floor, you have over-oiled the machine.  It may be a good time to put a practice quilt on the frame and run some of the oil out of the machine without worrying about dripping on the quilt.

Keep your TinLizzie18 clean and oiled and it will bring you years of happy quilting.

Filed under: Blog,Lizzie Support

Leave a Comment


  1. Burma Jones says:

    My RAM is making a screeching, metal on metal, sound that seems to be coming from the bobbin case area, although it may be coming from the needle take up shaft area. It’s hard to tell. I have thoroughly cleaned and oiled everything. The sound will stop for a few revolutions, sometimes even a few seconds, then it begins again. What should I do?

    • Kelley Nemitz says:

      Hi Burma… Please call our service department at 888-QUILT-18. We’ll need to troubleshoot your issue. thanks!

  2. Jan Adkins says:

    Mine is grinding in the needle area, wick has oil. Where is the plug on the hand wheel, do you need to take it apart?

    • Myrl Breinholt says:

      Jan, good morning. First, I would do a detailed cleaning of the machine to ensure that the grinding is not being caused by lint or a build up of thread. Check the dip stick. If there is oil on the dip stick do not add oil to the well on the bed of the machine. Usually, that would also indicate that you don’t need to oil above the needle on top of the machine. Since the grinding sounds like it is there, add two drops of oil at the top of the machine and let the machine run on manual mode for about 15 minutes. Before you run the machine, remove the plug at the back of the machine by the hand wheel and drop two drops of oil in that oil well. The grinding or squeaking should smooth out and disappear as the machine runs. Please let us know the result of this procedure. Thank you.

    • Myrl Breinholt says:

      The plug at the back is on top of the machine, back by the hand wheel.

  3. Becky Etka says:

    Where can I get oil, needles and bobbins

  4. Ann says:

    I didn’t know about the spot on the back. Good to find that out!

  5. Marilyn stromberg says:

    No one ever mentioned the rubber plug in the back by the hand wheel. Excellent info.

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