I have a singer 6038 and I am trying to hem some denim jeans. I bought the proper needle for this task (16/100) and when I put the needle in the machine, it, instead of going through the needle plate, hits the needle plate, thus not allowing for any sewing. Do I need to buy a new needle plate to solve this problem?
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a lot of machines struggle with denim because it is such a heavy and dense textile. Many domestic machines won't stitch it at all due to this. Things you can try however:
Denim needle, this has a deeper groove at the back and is a heavy gauge needle, or use size 110 if you don't have denim needle.
Bash the side seams with a hammer in the area you will be stitching, to soften up the fibres.
Use a seam jumper, this is a piece of plastic to put in back of the presser foot as you approach a cross seam to help keep the presser foot pressure even across the fabric. Sometimes called a "thingy-a-jean" or similar.
Don't bother trying to use the heavy gauge yellow jean thread unless you put it through the bobbin and sew with the right side down. But even then, many machines can't handle having this heavy thread underneath and the regular 50 cotton on top, my Janome 1600 won't do it.
put your machine on slowest speed if you have a variable setting and turn the flywheel to assist it through the heavy side seams.
Personally, I never bother with the twice turned hem on denim if shortening, I just overlock the raw edge, turn up 1 cm and stitch around in a matching blue thread so it is seen as little as possible.
try a denim needle Skipped stitches
1. The needle is not inserted correctly
Remove needle & reinsert needle( flat side towards the back of machine)
2. The needle is damaged
replace with new needle
3. The wrong size needle is being used
Choose a needle to suit the thread & fabric
4. The foot not attached correctly
Check & attach correctly
Are you trying to use a heavy thread like buttonhole twist through the needle like the yellow thread on store bought jeans? Most domestic machines will not cope with this heavy thread and it will be too large for the eye of the needle too.
If you are using regular weight 50 polyester thread and its breaking then it could be because the top tension is too tight. Just loosen off 1/2 a number on top tension dial and see if this helps.
If possible, buy a pack of jeans needles size 100 too, these are blue coated with teflon I think, and makes it easier to slip through denim which is a very dense fabric.
Hemming denim jeans is probably one of the toughest jobs for a domestic sewing machine so if you are trying to do this, its a good idea to take it slowly and use a "humpjumper" which helps to maneouvre over the thick side seams.
However, even with all the above, many machines won't sew more than one layer of heavy dense weave denim.
Jean-a-ma-jig or Hump-jumper
trying to sew over a bump of fabric, such as a thick jean hem, try using this tool local fabric store should carry it
It keeps your pressure foot level as you sew over the bump
you said your needle plate has many strike marks on it,,make sure you can't feel the strike marks so the fabric won't hang on them,,because marks on a needle plate can pulled the fabric
I turned up my husband's jeans using a size 100 needle. You can get easy thread needles that have a small gap in one side that you slide the thread through. There is a good way to turn up jeans and keep the original hem without having to cut them. Have a look at this site http://www.daciaray.com/?p=38
I would use a denim needle, these are blue coated to slide through the fibres, usually in size 100. But the looping is more about the weight of the seam, ie thickness. Also aremyou trying to use thick yellow jeans thread on the outside and normal thread inside? This is difficult to achieve as the thick yellow thread wont go through needle, you need to use it on the bobbin and sew right side down. I have never had much success with jeans hems on my Japanese machine and usually end up using my industrial Singer to do it. You can try usinf a seam jumper Sometimes called a jeans-a-ma-jig, this helps give leaverage to the feed dogs as you approach the side seams. Also, belt the seams flat with a hammer first.
Typically loops are a tension problem. Have you tried resetting your tension? You may have to also adjust your bottom tension, but be sure you mark (with fingernail polish or a sharpie) the original position so that you can put it back if it doesn't solve the problem. Also, what type of needle are you using? Try a jeans needle, maybe a 90 or 100. And, what kind of bobbin thread are you using? If you're using the same jeans thread, it may be too heavy for the bobbin. Try regular cotton or poly in the bobbin.
There is special thread for denim/jeans. It usually comes in shades of brown. It's a little heavier and might help with the breakage. You might also want to try a little less tension. I assume you already have a Schmetz denim needle?