Rip, Rip, Rip all the way Home!

Posted by on November 17, 2011

Of course we never want to admit that we have had to un-quilt in the past, present and I am sure to come in the future!   But in case that it does happen to you, here are 2 tips that might help.

 1.Ripping out stitches has a method that works if you follow it and have normal sized stitches.

First pull the thread tail from the underneath stitching. Pull until you pucker up or gather the thread as far as you can go before it breaks. Second, scratch at the stitching on the top in the area that you just pulled from and grab the loose tail of the top thread. Pull the top thread  until you gather the thread as far as you can go until that top thread breaks. Then go back to the underneath thread and repeat. If you alternate back and forth from top to bottom you can pull that stitching out in just a short time and have eliminated the use of a seam ripper and the chance of cutting your quilt.

2. After the stitches have been pulled out you might see the stitching holes where the sewing was. You can eliminate those holes by brushing with a wet toothbrush.

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  1. Marge Campbell says:

    I don’t use a Towa gauge for adjusting my bobbins or the top thread. I do these manually.
    Bobbin: Place the loaded bobbin case (open end up)in the palm of one hand, then pull on the thread coming off the bobbin case, the case should just start to move off your hand, but then the thread should pull out straight and steady, with just a hint of tension. If you feel a fast/slow (fits and starts) when pulling…get a new bobbin..the one you have in the case may be out of round. I use these for sewing on my home a regular spool of thread…mark it with a marker or dot of nail polish so you don’t use in your TL again.
    Upper tension:
    With the machine properly threaded, hopping foot in the down position, pull on the thread coming off the needle, the needle may hint at flexing/bending, but then the thread should pull out straight and steady, with just slight tension (not near as much tension as a home sewing machine). Once both upper and bobbin tension are adjusted, do a test stitch …I use stars & loops…the kind of stars we made in school, five lines crisscrossing one another..and then loops…all in several directions, if you get loops or pokies on the bottom..turn the upper a half turn to the right (righty tighty, lefty loosey) and test again. If still pokies on the underside..loosen the bobbin tension 1/12th of a turn to the left..I usually go just under that…just a hair (that “hair” is my term for about 1/16th of a full turn).
    Don’t be afraid to adjust the tension. This is not your home machine, it’s an industrial machine and is meant for you to adjust as needed. By using the above, I’ve been able to use any thread out there.

    • Marge Campbell says:

      Also, for those who do use the Towa gauges…once you are happy with the manual tension adjustment…test with the Towa gauge and write that number down…that is your “sweet spot” for adjusting for any type thread out there.
      There are other things that can cause problems with stitches/tension…here are a few to keep in mind:
      A worn check spring, lint or thread caught somewhere in the thread path, take up bar too high or low, Quilt sandwich too tight on the frame, needle in crooked or backwards…or not in all the way, wrong size needle…there are some more, but these are the most common.

  2. Marge Campbell says:

    Make sure it’s a soft toothbrush, just just damp, not wet. Check for colorfastness of the fabrics first.
    I test colorfastness of a customer quilt (or fabric at quilt shops, etc.) by taking a small piece of white muslin, slightly damp…and rub that on the fabric several seconds….if the fabric is not colorfast, you will see color on the white muslin.

  3. yoko says:

    Hi,Will silicone spray and sewers aid hurt my machine?

    • sabrina says:

      Yoko , Can you explain more of what kind of sprays and how they are used?

    • Marge Campbell says:

      The silicone spray and sewer’s aid should not hurt your machine. What they do is coat the thread to make it smoother. You don’t need a lot of it…just a tiny line down the side of the cone of thread is more than enough. Sewer’s aid, is silicone based…so either works. The spray works also, but use in moderation. I have found that Static Guard spray from the grocery store works well, and it evaporates much faster, and is safe for all fabrics/threads. If I have a t-shirt quilt, or thread that is giving me a problem…oh, and especially batik fabrics…I spray with each roll of the quilt…the difference is great, as it keeps the needle from picking up the sizing, glues from the t-shirt designs and fusible used to stabilize the shirts.

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