I tried to use the decorative stitches which would not work. when i went back to straight stitch my needle will not move at all under any circumstances now. would not lubricating the machine have any thing to do with the needle not moving?
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I believe your machine is an older model with cogs inside. There is a connection to the needle arm. As the cog rotates it moves the arm in and out causing the needle arm to do the same. You have to check inside the machine to see if the connections are tight. As the connector moves the needle arm is pulled in constantly by a spring so the straight stitch is always to the closest side (the right). This may be confusing but I've sent a picture for you to look at. It has to be adjusted somewhere. Without seeing it I cannot give too much information. Anyway, I would like to know how you do.
if your question is that the fabric didn't feed when I tried a zig-zag stitch , well then this might be a normal thing to happen on your machine , some machines when set to MAX size zig-zag stitch retract the "feed dogs" as you call them so that the operator can hand move the fabric around under presser foot , this is task called "darn" and its usually for filling large holes in fabric (socks!!) and for adding embroidery too (special needle)
Is your bobbin threaded correctly? You should be able to pull out the thread slowly while feeling it very slightly holding back. It should not pull out easily or quickly.
Could be something wrong with your tensions, try adjusting the upper tension first by starting at the middle setting and working gradually higher and then lower till you get a neat even stitch.
First, clean and oil according to the manual. Be sure to look for small threads and lint that might be stuck between parts. If that doesn't work, try changing the needle (although it shouldn't sew at all if it's a needle issue). If none of that works, It probably needs an adjustment. You will have to take it to an expert.
The "dial" in the back is for decorative stitches which require a "programmer" to be inserted with the stitch formation you want to form. For a straight stitch no cam is required in the back of the machine. The three dials on the front:
I can't tell whether you mean straight stitching and then turning your work 180 degrees to stitch atop the straight stitches in zig-zag, or continuing around the corner of your straight stitched side using zig-zag. But you can do either. You can mix up straight and zig-zag stitching at will.
Just ease up to a stop, ensuring the needle is positioned down inside the work when you stop.
Lift the foot.
Adjust to your desired stitch setting.
Lower the foot.
Turn the wheel toward you manually to ensure the stitches will be placed where you want them, and
Slowly engage the power again (via foot or thigh lever).
it sounds like something has happened to the cam gears that do the decorative stitches, which means the sewing machine needs to be checked.. but before you have the machine checked,, make sure all the dial that are used for decorative stitches are at the right setting one missed setting can cause a lot of problems
First, make sure you select the straight stitch setting on the round dial. It is the one that has the dashed lines, looking like the stitch itself. Then, you may also want to be sure that the stitch WIDTH (dial with the picture that looks like a straight line gradually turning into a zig-zag) to the lowest setting, which is generally 0. With some machines, even after selecting a straight stitch setting, moving the stitch width can change needle position. Sometimes it will initiate the zig zag, other times it will move needle position left to right. Does that fix it?
I had a similar problem a couple of years ago. I finally figured out that I had the straight stitch needle plate (the one with the single hole), rather than the zig zag needle plate (the one with the curved hole). When I changed plates, it worked fine.