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Elna SU missing stiches and breaking thread

My elna SU ( about 1979 ) got the thread tangled around the outside of the bobbin. I loosened two screws and then was able to get the thread out. I then put the two screws back in and then the bobbin and then rethreaded the machine. If I sew a straight line, it misses picking up the bottom thread. If I try to do a zigzag stich, it breaks the thread. Please help!!!

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It sounds like the needle hook timing is out. You need to get the needle in the lowest position and measure the gap from the needle to the hook point on the bobbin shuttle. It should be 1/4". You will need to remove the foot and foot plate to be able to see. I use a 1/4" drill bit as a gauge. If you need to adjust it, you will need to remove the free arm cover to the right of the foot and loosen the 2 allen head screws that hold the drive gear. Adjust the gap, tighten the screws and retry. Usually if the needle catches the thread to early, it will make a bad stitch and the upper thread will break. If it catches to late, it will make thread loops and the machine will skip stitches. Good luck, these are a good machine and worth fixing. Phil

Posted on Nov 13, 2008

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How can I reinsert bobbin race back into my elna su 68?


Hey I can help you with this, its a long detailed explanation though. Have you removed the bobbin holden, ie,undone two small screws and lifted out the silver bobbin case, leaving a black round thing? This black bit is the lower ring guard, you have probably undone this to remove a thread caught in the edge of the bobbin case or umderneath. Elna manuals never detailed cleaning here but it is simple enough and needs doing from time to time, i have seen big wads of felted threads and lint under guard rings when pulling apart machines. This video shows how to line up the lower guard ring, the outer casing and the bobbin case.

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I always turn the flywheel until the opening of the lower casing is facing forward, then look at the black lower guard ring and turn it until the cut out bit is facing the front. Now look a the bobbin case, it has a couple of silver Beaks and these need to fit in between the stoppers on the outer case. You will know if lined up right as it just fits straight in, wiggle a bit left or right until its lined up. Those two silver screws have to marry up with the two holes in the lower guard ring.
Once aligned , tighten up the two screws until firm. There is a dark coloured screw too, leave it alone.

Hope,is helps, once youve done this a couple of times, its easy.

Sep 04, 2014 | Elna Sewing Machines

1 Answer

The needle won't pick up bobbin thread on mu Elna Air Electronic SU


Has this just started after a jam up? As it's usually a symptom of timing being out.
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Apr 18, 2014 | Elna Sewing Machines

1 Answer

I had a zigzag problem with Elna SU Electronic Air, which I fixed with your solution, but some of the unfreeze liquid had gone down the bobbin winder hole and now the outer wheel on the right side wil


is the belt slipping now? You'll probably need to take off the top cover and see if you can clean up the spilt lubricant off the bobbin winder mechanisim and the drive belt on the right of this. The bobbin winder is friction driven, a rubber ring around a plastic barrel and when you click this over to the right the rubber ring drives off the main drive part of the machine.

removing the top panel is a bit tricky because you've got the handle there too, two screws unscrew it, then you need to manouvere the cover upwards and left to get it out of the bobbin feed part then tip it to the back of the machine to give you a view of the inners. You might want to subscribe to the Yahoo group called "Elna Heirlooms" as there's probably a prior thread on this there, lots of Swiss Elna owners who service their own machines, very useful place to visit.

May 15, 2012 | Elna Sewing Machines

1 Answer

How do you put a bobbin in a elna so i can use it to sew


Drop in a full bobbin with the holes side upwards (I'm assuming this is a Swiss Elna sewing Machine horizontal bobbin design as you haven't given the model number).

Now, hold the thread tail with your right hand and pulll the thread clockwise towards you while holding the bobbin still with a finger from your left hand. Bring the thread tail around towards you until it goes into the little slot, then press downwards onto the thread tail close to the bobbin until you hear it click into the tension spring. Test by lifting the thread tail upwards, it should stay in tension and not come back out of the groove.

Now close the back slide cover over the bobbin leaving the bobbin thread tail visible out to the right.

Now manually turn the flywheel towards you while holding the top thread tail and take the needle down into the bobbin holder area and back to the top, pull the thread tail to bring the bobbin thread up to the top.

There is a threading up diagrams at www.sewusa.com http://www.sewusa.com/Threading_Diagrams/Threading_Pages/Elna_Sewing_machine_threading/Elna_Supermatic_threading_diagram.htm
for the old Supermatic but the bobbin holder design is almost identical for all the subsequent models such as the SU, TSP, Supermatic or Air Electronics like the Stella, Carina or Jubilee, the above is the same for all.

Sep 19, 2011 | Elna Sewing Machines

1 Answer

On my elna supermatic 722010 sewing machine, the thread makes the bobbin pop out and the thread get tangled underneath. I have had it fixed twice, which is expensive. Should I just get rid of it and buy...


not unless you can find another swiss elna, like star series su. check bobbin in right way, holes on top to wind and load. you havent bought anothet type bobbin??? go to www.arizonaexpressionz.com and download a manual for supermatic. then read bobbin winding and threading carefully and rewinf bobbin and thread up again. make sure thread goes into tension spring all the way. bobbin should turn anticlockwise when yoou pull thread. also please brush clean bobbin holder area and check for any threads caught there. now a drop of quality clear machine oil in middle hole and gently run for 30secs to work in. do this every time you get your machine out. there are several oiling points shown in manual. oil them. these machines are quality but yours may need love tlc from a elna tech especially if it has not been serviced in a while. but a well maintained elna will out stitch a new plastic machine any day in my humble opinion. if you want to join yahoo group elna heirlooms, experts who service their own and share photos info manuals and love these vintage classics.

Jun 16, 2011 | Elna Sewing Machines

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I have a old old elna Stella 27 and it's a beauty but I am having problems with the lower thread tangling until it is a thickish mass around the outer side of the place the bobbin goes, but then sometimes...


Hi! Congratulations on your old Elna! I just love old sewing machines; they are so solid and reliable.

(Unless of course you're getting a big bird's nest with the bobbin thread, right? That's so frustrating!)

With my old machines, I've found that a tiny bit of thread caught in the bobbin assembly can cause these nasty tangles. I use a bright flashlight and a pair of tweezers and just keep looking until I find it. While you're in there, clean out any old lint or gunk (meaning, old oil) you find. Brush all the lint out. I use a q-tip moistened with a bit of WD-40 to clean the gunk (but be careful that the fuzz from the q-tip doesn't come off while you're cleaning). With the WD-40, you have to be very careful not to get any of it on the surface of the machine--it can mess up some of those beautiful old finishes.

So clean the bobbin area, make sure you're threading the bobbin correctly, and lastly, if you hold the tails of the top and bobbin threads snugly in your left hand behind the needle while you take the first few stitches, the birds' nests should be a thing of the past.

Let me know if this works, ok?

Happy Sewing!




Feb 10, 2010 | Elna 2007 Mechanical Sewing Machine

2 Answers

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Please describe the type of bobbin you have. Is it held inside of a removable metal casing? Or is it a dropin type? Is the sewing machine what is known as a "freearm" which you can put a sleeve or trouserleg over or is it a flatbed type? When I know this I can help you further.(I used to sell sewing machines).

Jun 11, 2009 | Elna Sewing Machines

1 Answer

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I have a 26 year old Elna and this is the only weakness it has. Before sewing, try this. Turn the wheel manually and watch the upper thread pick up the bobbin thread. Pull both back to the left. Make sure they are plenty long. This helps me prevent the tangling in the dogfeed. My Elna has a universal tension on the bottom and I haven't ever had a problem with it unless the top tension is too tight.

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