I am trying to sew on a cheap plastic tablecloth, single and double thickness. This is a new machine and I cant get the tension right. The underside thread is just a straight tight line, not a linked stitch. I have tried just about every needle thread tension with the same results. I have tightened the bobbin tension and loosened it. Am using a 14 needle, and two different color threads so I can see which is which. I checked to see that I have threaded the machine properly, and it is--maybe I should return the machine? Can you think of anything I can do to correct this? Thank you.
Just a few tips, which might help. Try these on cotton material first. Make sure you use the same quality thread for both, upper and lower stitching. I find Gutterman the best. Secondly, turn the bobin the other way round. Thirdly, make sure there is no fluff under the needle.Remove the plate and use a little brush. Fourthly, test the bobbin tension by holding it by the thread: if it falls to the ground, it is too loose, if it stops suddenly in the air, it is too tight. When it drops a little and then stays, that it the correct tension. I hope this helps.
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According to the manual, you should not need to adjust the bobbin tension (and I located other sites which stated the bobbin tension cannot be adjusted on this machine). Apparently, all the tension adjustment is accomplished through the upper thread::
"EN Thread Tension Upper thread tension Basic thread tension setting: "4". (1) To increase the tension, turn the dial to the next number up. To reduce the tension, turn the dial to the next number down. A. Normal thread tension for straight stitch sewing. B. Thread tension too loose for straight stitch sewing. Turn dial to higher number. C. Thread tension too tight for straight stitch sewing. Turn dial to lower number. D. Normal thread tension for zig zag and decorative sewing. Correct thread tension is when a small amount of the upper thread appears on the bottom side of fabric. Lower thread tension The bobbin tension has been set correctly at the factory, so you do not need to adjust it. Please note: - Proper tension setting is important for strong seams. - There is no single tension setting appropriate for all stitch functions, thread or fabric. - A balanced tension (identical stitches both top and bottom) is usually only desirable for straight stitch construction sewing. - 90% of all sewing will be between "3" and "5". - For zig zag and decorative sewing stitch functions, thread tension should generally be less than for straight stitch sewing. - For all decorative sewing you will always obtain a nicer stitch and less fabric puckering when the upper thread appears on the bottom side of your fabric. 1 A B C 22 D"
Doing further research, I found this statement on a machine review site:
"After reading reviews online from where I've bought my drop-in bobbin machines, I think many of the negative reviews are due to the bobbin thread coming up without laying across the bobbin. It can cause the stitches to look very sloppy and no amount of tension adjusting can fix the stitches."
There are several machine review sites wherein 4423 owners stated their disappointment in the 4423's performance. Some said the machine failed almost immediately and others said the machines developed problems when sewing heavy fabric.
the looping on the bottom usually is a tension problem, the top & bottom tension are unequal usually fixed by adjusting the top tension.
some people that I've talked with have had success with changing to a different size needle ( depends what type of thread is being used).
when the machine is threaded the foot needs to be up ( this releases tension on the thread), when the foot is lowered it the tension is set on the thread. if the material being sewed is too thick it raises the foot too high & releases tension on the thread ( the material has to be really thick to do this).
if there a piece of thread or lint in or around the tensioner or bobbin area it could cause trouble.
other wise if you've tried everything you can think of, take it back th the store & have them try it & tell you what is wrong.
machines can have single or double feeders. what type does yours have? feeding problems can usually be fixed by a good cleaning+ oiling of the feeder mechanism which regularly gets clogged with lint+threads/scrap threads. brush it out thoroughly with a stiff-bristled brush like an acid brush. apply 1 drop of oil to each feeder seen on the foot-plate. wipe excess oil off with a clean dry rag being sure not to get any debris from the rag caught in the feeder(s). other problem might be your bobbin tension. this is usually adjusted on the bobbin race with a very small screwdriver.
1) too thick for the feed dog to move the fabric forward need; lighter tension
2) are the upper and lower threads the same kind of thread?
3) is the thread feeding properly from above? sometimes the spool can snag the thread causing the tension to jump and skip stitches
Put the tension back to the normal setting - around 4.
Lengthen the stitch to accommodate the multi layers.
When you are sewing and come to a thicker section, stop with the needle down, lift the presser foot and place a folded scrap of fabric under the back of the foot to keep it even. Lower the presser foot and continue sewing.
these are the best setting i have found for sewing through thick materials, specifically leather and vinyl:
top tension- between 8 and 9
bottom tension- between 4 and 5
stitch length between 3 and 4
stitch type: 2
that is just what works best for me, i have a brother xl-2600i