Things That Can Influence Your Quilting

Posted by on July 24, 2017

Huh?  What?  Are you saying there are more things to think about than what thread I use and what design I quilt?????

YES!

There are so many things that come into play when we’re quilting.  The basics are the fabric, needle, thread and batting, and there are sooooo many considerations just with these basics, but then you go into other things like paint on the surface, embellishments, etc.

So, let’s start with these basics.  Thread I won’t go into in great detail, since last week’s blog article was an in-depth article on threads and which needles to use and how to adjust tension for different types of threads.

Needles: The composition and sculpture of the needle is paramount.  At TinLizzie18, we use the Groez-Beckert titanium needles.  They have a scarf that is a bump and a very long groove.  The bump spreads the fibers of the fabric and the batting, paving the way for the thread to pass through with less friction (thus less tension).  The groove protects the thread, also from tension and friction as it passes through the fibers because the thread can nestle in the groove. Less friction means less tension AND less heat.  These needles go up and down through the quilt sandwich thousands of times and they can get hot.  The titanium helps keep the needle cool too.  You should change your needle every 8 hours of quilting time, or sooner if you start hearing it “pop” through the fabric.  That is the sound of a dull needle. Dull needles can cause skipped stitches, poorly formed stitches, fraying or breaking thread and they can even create a “run” in your fabric by pulling a fiber rather than penetrating it.

Batting: Polyester is fluffy and makes it easier to form a stitch within the batting.  It generates less heat, so it is good for metallic and rayon and trilobal poly threads.  100% cotton is thinner and harder.  It is much more challenging to get good tension with cotton because there is less “forgiveness” than with poly.  Remember that tension is a tug of war between the top and bottom threads and ideally, they meet in the middle of the batting, with neither thread showing on the other side of the quilt. Blended battings (cotton and poly, cotton and wool, silk, bamboo, recycled bottles, etc.) are common blends.  They are usually 80/20, 70/30, 60/40, etc.  meaning they are perhaps 80% cotton, 20% poly, or whatever their label says.  It is easiest to get good tension with a 60% cotton/40% poly batting, or a 100% bonded poly that is NOT high loft (a whole other set of problems with that).

Fabric:   The influence of the thread count in the fabric is huge!  Count pertains to the threads per inch in the fabric weave.  Most common is 60 threads x 60 threads woven in each direction.  Batiks are usually 200 x 200 threads, so your needle doesn’t last as long and they cause more drag on your thread, so tension may need to be a little higher.  Also, you’d think a #18 needle to spread those tight fibers and keep the thread cool, but a # 18 on Batik leaves very large holes that are harder to close up unless you wash the quilt.  I typically use a #16 needle, but everyone has their own preferences.  So, the higher the thread count, the tighter the weave, the higher your tension and the faster your tension will get dull….oh my, is it worth it to use batiks???  (YESSSSSSSS, Yes it is!)

Paint: The influence of paint on the surface of your quilt is that it causes the thread to pull harder, so more tension is needed to create the stitch within the batting.  Remember that a larger needle will pave the way for your thread, but it will also leave large holes, so you must pick your battle.

Thread:  Okay, I said you should read the post on thread from last week, but I’ll do a quick summary here:

  • 100% cotton is fluffier, less tension
  • Poly threads are usually lighter, so more tension
  • Slippery threads require more tension
  • Metallic tread on top, loosen top tension and use a smoother thread in the bobbin (poly, but not trilobal)
  • Slippery top thread should have a rougher bobbin thread to hold the stitch
  • Slippery top and bottom threads, consider tying and burying your threads because they will work loose.
  • Always use equal or lighter thread in the bobbin than top thread.  EG King Tut on top & So Fine in the bobbin are a perfect combo, So Fine on top and King Tut in the bobbin, presents a tension challenge.  Doable, but a challenge.
  • Thread should come off the cone according to how it’s wound.  Cross wound comes off the top while stacked should come off the side.

Bobbins: TinLizzies have an M size bobbin.  Aluminum runs smoothly, and is light so it causes less tension and stays cooler.  The backlash spring in the bobbin case is there to stop the bobbin from coasting in any direction, so it prevents backlash, thus it’s name (backlash spring).  USE THE PIGTAIL in the bobbin case!!!  Using the pigtail causes the thread to come off the bobbin in the same direction consistently, regardless of which direction the machine is moving, and you don’t get that wonky stitch when you change direction.  Remember, equal weight thread or lighter weight in the bobbin than on top for the most successful results.

I hope these tips help you along your quilting journey.  Thanks for joining me here at TinLizzie18, where we’re committed to helping quilters of all levels realize their quilting dreams!

lynn

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Threads: The long and short of it

Posted by on July 10, 2017

lynn

Hello and thank you for joining our blog!!  These articles are written by our education team members in an effort to enhance your TinLizzie18 quilting experience (“Quilting Without Tears!”) because we at TinLizzie18 are committed to helping quilters of all levels realize their quilting dreams!

Thread is a huge and very important element in quilting, yet I am constantly surprised when quilters tell me “Oh, I just use the same thread all the time.” I assume because of the price or the lack of breakage, or because (they think) it doesn’t matter!!

Quilters, you have spent a great deal of time and money on your quilt tops.  Not using a complimentary thread to finish it off is like going to Tiffany’s, then wrapping the gift in newspaper with string. Really???  I agonize over my choice of thread just as much as I do over my quilting design, or as I did for my choice of just the right fabric, and you should too.  I am not promoting or recommending specific brands of thread, but I am naming some that I am familiar with so that you have something to compare other threads with.  So….here is the basic skinny on threads along with a few tips on tension and needles:

  • Long fibers are less fuzzy (use more tension)
  • King Tut is fuzzy (use less tension)
  • Permacore and Polyester threads are less fuzzy (use more tension)
  • If using Metallic threads on top, loosen top tension and use a smoother thread in bobbin (poly or tri-lobal poly or rayon)
  • If using Slippery top threads (tri-lobal polys or rayons), they are best paired with a cotton or a wrapped poly bobbin (rougher texture, less slippery – So Fine is a good choice).
  • Use thread nets with slippery threads both on the top cone and on the bobbin winding cone.
  • If using Slippery top thread with Slippery bobbin, consider hand tying & burying knots, or taking 7-8 tiny or overlapped stitches to start & stop, otherwise threads will slip until they become loose.  I have experienced even small overstitched starts and stops coming undone when machine washed.
  • Bobbin threads should always be equal to or lighter than the top thread.  Never heavier unless you are doing “bobbin work”.
  • Thread must come off spool or cone according to how it is wound.
    • Cross wound thread should feed up and the off top of cone/spool,
    • Stacked thread (most spools) should feed straight off of the side. You can purchase adaptive products that attach to your Tin Lizzie thread tree and allow the stacked thread spool to unwind properly.
  •  REMEMBER: Slippery threads paired with rougher threads are the best combination.
  • If specialty threads break too often and tension is good, consider using the next larger needle to reduce friction.
  • Make fine adjustments to tension with thread nets and by using extra holes in thread path.

SPECIFIC TIPS FOR SUCCESS WITH TRILOBAL POLY AND OTHER SLIPPERY THREADS

  • USE THREAD NETS ON TOP THREAD AND ON CONE USED TO WIND BOBBIN
  •  USE # 14, 16 OR 18 NEEDLES, BUT TEST FIRST***
  • IF USING IN BOTH TOP AND BOBBIN, YOU WILL HAVE GREATER SUCCESS WITH PREWOUND BOBBINS (AFTER REMOVING BACKLASH SPRING FROM YOUR BOBBIN CASE).  BEST TO HAVE A SEPARATE BOBBIN CASE.
  • IF USING YOUR OWN BOBBINS, REMOVE BACKLASH SPRING & ADD SILICONE ‘M’ SIZE MAGIC GENIE BOBBIN WASHER, AND WIND USING A THREAD NET ON THE CONE.
  • USE THE PIGTAIL
  • MOST PEOPLE LOOSEN THE TENSION, WHEN THEY SHOULD BE TIGHTENING BECAUSE THESE THREADS ARE VERY SLICK.
  • USE TITANIUM OR TEFLON COATED NEEDLE  (TL GROZ BECKERTS ARE TITANIUM)
  • IF USING A TOWA BOBBIN CASE, SETTING SHOULD BE IN RED ZONE (35-45)
  • TOP THREAD TENSION SHOULD FEEL SAME AS ANY OTHER THREAD WHEN PULLING FROM NEEDLE (Have thread above foot.  Foot down.  wrap thread around forefinger and hold thread directly behind eye of needle.  Now apply pressure to thread with thumb.  Needle should deflect very slightly and tug of thread should feel same as any other thread.
  • Other threads can create a “channel” in the eye of the needle, causing SLIPPERY THREADS to fray, so always use a fresh needle for SLIPPERY THREADS.

*** TO TEST NEEDLE: Before putting needle in machine, cut a piece of thread 2-3 feet long.  Thread one end onto needle.  hold one end of the thread up and the other down.  Needle should slide freely along thread.  If it catches at all, or doesn’t slide easily from end to end of the thread, the needle eye is too small or it could have a burr.  Either way, try a different needle.

And last but certainly not least!  Following is a handout given in our TinLizzie18 classes.  This handout was compiled by our head of Education, Myrl Breinholt and is published here with her permission:

 

THREADS

Spun: these threads are made with little fibers tightly twisted together into long strands and then two or more are twisted together to form the thread.  Most common are cotton and polyester.  Cotton fibers are short.  Polyester fibers are very long and must be cut into short lengths before the spinning takes place.  Mettler™ all-purpose polyester, Maxi-Lock™ and Gutterman™ are example of spun threads.

Filament threads: Silk is the only natural filament thread.  All others are man-made.  These fibers are all very, very long and can be made round or in other shapes.  These need little twisting to keep them together. YLI™ Ultra sheen is a good example of continuous filament threads.

Monofilament threads: are made with a single strand of fiber that is stronger and bigger than single strands used in the filament thread.  They are usually clear. Wonder Invisible Thread and Sulky’s™ invisible thread are good example.

Texturized  Threads are also filament thread, but rather than being twisted they are treated with heat and chemical to give them texture and bulk.  Woolly Nylon™ is an example of Texturized thread.

Core threads are combination of filament thread and spun thread.  These feel soft, but are made strong.  Dual duty™ and Signature™ are examples.

Laminate threads are multiple layers of polyester and are bonded together in sheets.  They are cut into tiny strips and wound on to spools forming a flat, shiny thread.

Metallic threads are a combination of materials bonded together for form a bright, colorful decorative thread.  Japanese have been making metallic thread for hundreds of years.  You can tell a good metallic thread by the way it drapes instead of twisting back on itself.

Trilobal Polyester: are extruded through what is called a spinneret.  It has tiny holes in it that the fibers are forced through.  The shape of the holes determines the shape of the thread.  Trilobal thread has three sides that catch the light and make for color filled with luster.  It keeps it color well in heat, light and is not affected by detergents and body oil.  Magnifico™, Fantastico™ and Glide™ are examples of trilobal threads

Weight refers to how long the piece of thread is when it weighs 1 gram.  A thread that weights 1 gram and is 30 meters long is considered a 30 wt thread.  A longer thread, maybe 40 meters long, that still weighs only 1 gram is considered 40 wt and is thinner than the 30 wt.  Weight sizes = the bigger the number, the smaller the thread.

Tex size refers to the weight of 1000 meters of thread.  If 1000 meters of thread weighs 25 grams it is a 25 Tex.  This means that if a thicker thread is 1000 meters it will weigh more, maybe 60 grams.  It is a 60 Tex thread.  Tex size = the bigger the number, the bigger the thread.

INCREASED TWIST
Although it is never printed on labels, thread twist is measured by the number of twists applied per meter. Why is this important? A loosely twisted thread requires less total fiber content, takes less time to produce, and is less expensive to manufacture. “Regular” cotton thread may have as few as 150 twists per meter. (Think of a budget thread that can easily be untwisted by rubbing it between your fingers.) King Tut has almost 7 times as many twists per meter, resulting in a smooth, consistent surface.

FYI
If stored correctly, thread will last many years.  Keep your thread out of direct sunlight and away from open windows.  Sunlight is a thread’s worst enemy.  Too much can make it dry and brittle.  Dust and dirt can build up on thread stored too close to an open window.

As a rule, filament thread, flat thread and metallic thread need much less top tension than cotton.  These threads are much more fragile and many of them have quite a bit of stretch to them as well.  Reducing the top tension on your machine will reduce the number of thread breaks and allow the thread to float on top of the quilt, rather than being pulled too tight.

Finishing:
Soft: only died and lubricated.
Mercerized: treated in a solution to increase is bulk and affinity to receive dye.
Gassed: Passing cotton thread through a flame at high speed to reduce the fuzz.
Glazed: cotton thread are treated with starches and chemicals under heat and then polished to a high luster.
Bonded: treating continuous filament nylon or polyester with a special resin that encapsulates the filaments.  It is a tough smooth coating that adds to the thread’s strength.

Helpful resources:
A Thread of Truth  www.ylicorp.com
Needles and Threads and Bobbins, Oh, My by Nancy Goldsworthy http://www.fil-tec.com/thread
http://www.sulky.com/index_us.php
http://www.superiorthreads.com

I hope this article enhances your quilting experience!

Lynn Bell
TinLizzie18 Educator

 

 

 

 

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What did I stitch on that quilt? Quilt Documentation

Posted by on June 20, 2017

shutterstock_258683114-[Converted]

Have you ever been in this position?  Someone says, “I really like the quilting pattern and the thread you used on Susie’s quilt!  Can you do that on mine?”  You think you remember what Susie’s quilt looked like, but you’re not 100% sure what quilt pattern was used and have no idea what brand or weight of thread was used.  This happened to me a couple of times when I first started quilting and had done some close family and charity quilts.  You notice I said a couple of times….

There are some basic things that I have found to be important to me for quilt documentation in case I want or need to duplicate a quilt stitching design look.

1.  What are the dimensions of the quilt?

  • Comparing quilt dimensions helps me determine if a re-create is feasible.

2.  What quilt stitch pattern did I use?

  • Is it free hand?  What style of free hand stitching; meander, swirls, loops, etc.?  What did I use for reference marks to keep the free hand stitching evenly spaced and sized?
  • Is it a paper pantograph?  What is the name and size of the panto?  Where did I start the panto; was it a full stitch out in the first pass or did I do a partial row stitch (stitching off the top/bottom of the quilt)?  How far did I start and end off the side edges of the quilt?  How many rows of design are down the quilt?
  • Is it a digital stitch design?  What size is the individual design?  How many repeats?  What is the spacing between the repeats?  Where did I start the design – off the side edge, over the top edge?  How many rows of design are down the quilt?
  • Is it an edge to edge pattern or a block by block pattern?  Are there borders?  If multiple borders, is each one stitched differently or were they combined?

3.  What thread/threads were used? (Defining information for the top and the bobbin.)

  • What brand of thread was used?
  • What type and weight of thread was that brand? (Cotton, poly, silk, metallic, 40, 50, 100, etc.)
  • What needle brand and size were used with that thread set-up?

There are several ways to document this information.

4.  It can be done digitally.  Create a document form to write in all the information and also add digital pictures.

5.  It can be documented by hand in a notebook.  Include all of the written documentation and add a sketch of the quilt design.

  • If print pictures of the quilt design they can be added to the notebook.
  • Clear, plastic 3-ring binder sleeves can be used to store quilt documentation notes and printed pictures.  The 3-ring binder size can grow with your documentation or you can use divider tabs to section your creations into years or categories.
  • I often sketch stitching designs on graph paper and I like to include those sketches with the quilt documentation.  The plastic sleeves work well for this.

The documentation process doesn’t take that long once you decide what information you want to have for reference.  And, it can save time and frustration if you want to re-create a previous masterpiece!

sondra-r

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A Discussion on Tension

Posted by on September 2, 2015

shutterstock_151206683 Here is what I understand about tension.  First of all, it is a tug of war.  If you remember as a child playing tug of war the goal was to pull harder than the other team to get the center flag onto your side of the field.  In achieving good tension on the sewing machine we want the tensions to be equal and that “flag” to stay in the center.  There is no magical number for the tensions, but keeping the tensions equal is the goal.  For this reason I always teach adjusting the bobbin tension first, then adjusting the needle tension to match that.  I like my bobbin tension fairly loose.  By that I mean when laying the bobbin case in the palm of your hand you are able to lift the bobbin case up onto its side holding the thread that is placed in the tension strap, but not in the “piggy tail.” (The piggy tail is the little spiral shaped wire on the front of the bobbin case.  I place the thread in the piggy tail when I have finished adjusting the bobbin tension.)   As you pull your hand away from the bobbin case it should gently fall with your hand.  There should be tension felt, but it should drop gently, not like a rock.  If the bobbin case does not move or has to be shaken down it is much more difficult to achieve a balanced tension.  If the bobbin case does not drop, turn the tension adjustment screw (the large screw) left 3 to 5 minutes as on a clock.  If is drops like a rock, turn the tension adjustment screw right 3 to 5 minutes and try the test again. Test the tension by sewing a figure 8.  Examine the result.  Has the stitch locked inside your project?  Yay!  You got it.  Can you see the bobbin thread peeking out on top?  If so, then loosen the needle tension by turning the adjustment knob counter clockwise.  The needle tension is MUCH less sensitive than the bobbin tension strap.  Turn the tension adjustment knob AT LEAST one full turn when making adjustments.  Can you see the needle thread peeking out underneath the project?  If so, then tighten the needle tension by turning the adjustment knob clockwise at least a full turn.  Pay no attention to the numbers on the knob.  Use them to know if your turned a full or half turn. ALWAYS MAKE SURE THAT THE NEEDLE THREAD IS FLOSSED INTO THE TENSION DISCS.  The thread may appear to be in the discs when in reality it is only resting on the edge of them.  Please note that the thread may be hampered by lint from moving smoothly.  Take a business card and slip it under the tension strap to clear any possible culprits from under it.  Use a brush to clean inside the tension discs that the needle thread runs through. There are many elements that effect tensions.

  1. Thread weight and drag.  Weight is indicated by # and a number or WT and a number.  #40 to #60 (40 WT to 60 WT) are common weights used in quilting.  The higher the number, the finer the thread.  To add to the confusion there is another measurement of thread called TEX.  This measurement is the opposite.  You will see it on the label as TEX and a number like TEX 30.  The higher the number, the heavier is the thread.  TEX 30 is close to #40. This method of measurement is less common.  I prefer using a three ply thread.  Stay away from the serger threads because they aren’t as strong as they need to be for quilting.
    1. You should be using equal or less weight and drag in your bobbin than is in the needle.
    2. Drag is caused from thickness of thread or loose fibers.  When cotton thread is created fibers are twisted together leaving small ends.  That is why people sing the praises of Long Egyptian cotton because the fibers are longer and leave fewer ends.  These ends drag on the tension disc and strap and increase the tension.  There is nothing wrong with this, but you need to be aware of what is happening and that you need to loosen the tension.
    3. Polyester thread is one continuous fiber, often twisted over a core of polyester.  It has less drag because of the lack of loose ends.  A wonderful combination is Cotton like King Tut in the needle and a nice polyester like PeraCore in the bobbin.  Having less drag in the bobbin makes it easier to get better tension.
    4. There are other threads that are REALLY slippery.  An example are the trilobal threads that are polyester, but the fibers have been forced through something like a sieve to create three sides.  Three fibers are twisted together to make these threads shine.  They are very slippery and have very little drag.  You need to tighten the tensions on these.
  2. Another element influencing tension is batting.  The thicker the batting, the easier it is to get the stitch to lock inside the project.  If the project is thicker there is more wiggle room for the stitch to lock.
    1. 100% cotton batting is among the thinnest battings and requires a little more adjustments to get great tensions.
    2. High loft polyester is among the thickest and easiest to achieve perfect tension.
    3. I love the 60/40 blends.  That is 60% cotton and 40% polyester.  It has the finished look of cotton, but is easier to get the adjustments on tension because it is a bit thicker.
  3. Fabric density also effects tensions.
    1. Think of the difference of Home Spun or flannel type fabric as opposed to 800 count sheets.  The fibers are more densely woven in the sheets making is harder for the needle to pull the thread through the fabric.  Try to match your quilt top and quit backing to be the same type of fabric so you aren’t battling the loose weave/tight weave battle.
    2. Painted fabric also requires the needle thread to pull harder to get the threads to lock.  An example of painted fabric is batik.
    3. None of these are “bad” fabrics.  It is just important to know what adjustments need to be made to be successful.

There are some mechanical items to notice to make sure all is in proper order with your machine.  There is a check spring attached to your tension unit where the needle thread runs through.  It is important that the thread is in this check spring.  Its job is to lock the stitch by pulling on the thread.  Notice that when you pull on the needle thread near the needle the check spring will move.  If it is not moving, check to make sure the tread is running through the check spring.  Also check to make sure that the check spring is positioned at about 11 o’clock.  If it is not in the correct position, you will be able to adjust it slightly by using a screw driver in the center screw of the tension unit and turning it in the direction that is needs to move.

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Buying and Exploring Threads

Posted by on October 6, 2014

From denim-weight threads to the skinny slippery lingerie threads, we thought you’d like to have a little bit of knowledge of the differences and benefits so that you could purchase the threads that will work best for your long arm and your project.

Strength—Take the end of the thread and break it. It should have at least the same standard strength as the regular piecing thread that you buy on the dressmakers spools at the local fabric store.

Ribbed or not ribbed— Run you fingers down the thread and feel for ribs, on the metallic threads especially. Threads that are man made often have a core and then a second winding around the core. The smoother the thread the less breakage you will have.

Shape of the thread cone— If there is no spool or cone for the thread to stand on then the spool was meant to feed off of a horizontal spool holder (you know, the kind with just a little tiny cardboard core.) You would have trouble at the bottom of the cone if it were on a stand without a cone because the thread pulls out from under the thread where it rests and sometimes snags. Some spools or cones are tapered and the thread jumps off the spool in hopping motion. You can take the jump out of the thread at the first 3 hole thread guide on your machine just by using all 3 holes. The cone shape or the way the thread is wound around the cone can sometimes cause this jumping. Also, be aware of the cones with the cut slots for holding the tail of your thread for storage or the coined edges. These rough edges can snag the thread and yank the spool right off of the thread tree. The cure for this is the spool caps. The spool caps fit right on the top of the spool pin on the thread tree and angle the thread away from the spool.

Colorfast—The reds, oranges and deep rich colors have been treated heavily to absorb the dye. Sometimes there is excess. If you hold the thread like dental floss and rub it across a light colored fabric scrap you can see if any color comes off.  If it does, don’t buy it.

Fuzz— Fuzz that you build up on your long arm sometimes has to do with the thread. Sometimes it has to do with the way the thread travels up and down as it sews. Some threads like Gutermann are run over a flame before it is spooled up and that burns off the fuzziness. It is one of the reasons that Guterman is a little more expensive, but sometimes worth it. Keep a paint brush or sewing machine lint brush handy and every time that you change the bobbin brush out the hook. Brush, brush, brush, until no more fuzzies are falling out of the hook.

Stretch— Threads like monofilament and metallic are stretchy; you can see it and feel it just by pulling the thread. You can loosen up on your tensions enough and use less thread guides to keep the thread from stretching. The stretch threads are usually a little weaker but can run on a long arm with the proper adjustments.

Storage and thread aging— Stores are told to rotate their thread stock every 4 months by the thread representative. If they are doing that then the thread that you purchase will be fresh and new. On the other hand we are told by the thread representative that the quality threads will last 200 years in a quilt. Store your thread out of the daylight. Don’t believe all those rumors about rejuvenating your thread after it is all dried out—get rid of the old stuff.

Price— You get what you pay for. If the thread brand as a whole costs a little more then it is probably a really good thread. Of course the industrial threads are made to last also and they are a little better buy.

Brand— The TinLizzie18 accessory box that comes with a TinLizzie18 product will have Superior Thread products in it. This is a quality thread. We also wanted you to know that just because we have just one brand in the box doesn’t mean that is the only brand it will run. The TinLizzie18s run a wide range of threads including fussy metallics.

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What to do when the machine “jams!”

Posted by on June 2, 2014

Bam! Don’t you just hate that sound? And then the machine is locked up.

The first thing to do is stay calm 99% of the time it is only a fuzzy or thread jam.

PHOTO1A PHOTO1B

If you are in computer mode—save your layout. Don’t worry, you can get back to where you were in the pattern if you save the layout. Then turn everything off.

Go to the back of the machine and grab on to the fly wheel and see if there is any play in the motion of the wheel. In simple terms, rock the wheel back and forth and see if you can get it to free up. Don’t force it; you don’t want to turn the hook on the shaft into another position. You can be firm with it but, let’s check some other things before we go to brutal force.
PHOTO2Rock the fly wheel to get motion between the hook and race to help clear out threads.

Take the bobbin case out.
PHOTO3
Take the needle out. You might have to unscrew the needle bar screw to get the needle out—and it might be that you have to take the needle out to get the bobbin case out.

PHOTO4Look in the bobbin basket area and see if there are any threads or fuzzies that you can clear out. Pull them out and use a tweezers if necessary. Then use a lint brush and really work at it to get every bit out that you can.

Oil the bobbin basket/ hook. Oil it until the oil can saturate the fuzzy. Sometimes you will need to let the oil set for a while. Rock the fly wheel a little and then re oil in sequences so that you can work the oil into the fuzzy.

PHOTO5A PHOTO5B PHOTO5COil at the top          Oil on the left        Oil on the right

Try to get oil between the outer part of the hook and the inner part that is called the race. That is generally where the fuzzy is. Our plan is to oil up the fuzzy and when it is greasy enough we will be able to turn the fly wheel and spin the fuzzy out.

PHOTO6Now begin to rock the fly wheel. You will know if you are making headway by how far you can rock it back and forth. It is definitely a fuzzy or thread jam if you can get the fly wheel to respond and loosen up. I remember that I once had to rock that fly wheel 500 times to get the oil worked into the fuzzy so it would then turn.

Once you get the fly wheel turning free, you can turn the machine on without any needle or bobbin case and spin the fuzzys and extra oil out.

It is possible that during the initial thread jam the hook could be turned on the shaft. You will know that this has happened if you cannot get a full rotation of the needle without hitting the hook. You will also know if you are slightly out of time if you begin sewing and skip stitches. If the hook is no longer synchronized with the needle then check out one of the timing videos on our website or YouTube channel, or look in the manual for timing instructions.

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