Question about Brother Sewing Machines

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While sewing my top stitch is a straight line with no stitching breaks. The bottom looks normal. How do I make it uniform with the bottom stitch. ex top looks like_________ bottom looks like _ _ _ _ _ I have tried ALL different tension settings. HELP

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  • Brother Master
  • 7,365 Answers

Try changing the needle
try rethreading the top thread
do you have a manual for the sewing machine ?

Posted on Nov 09, 2012

6 Suggested Answers

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

dupina
  • 110 Answers

SOURCE: tension

Check your tension disks, with your presser foot up, and the tension dial on zero. Sometimes a piece of cotton breaks off between the tension disks and then prevents the disks to work properly. Also make sure when you thread the machine, the thread does go through the disks and over the take up lever. After you threaded the machine, before putting the thread through the eye of the needle, lower the presser foot and while pulling on the thread with your left hand, increase the tension with your right hand. Do it slowly and you should feel in difference in tension. If this is the case, your machine should work fine.

Posted on Nov 30, 2007

SOURCE: Sewing machine straight stitch is not straight

Hey. It's full out possible that you have it on the right setting...but concider this - the switcher inside the sewing machine could be broken (ie. It's moving to different stitches - but not the one you have the outside set for)

It happened to me (pc o crap singer model)

Posted on Jan 24, 2008

bargainbox
  • 1388 Answers

SOURCE: stitching looping

This solution is for tension problems...if you cannot form any sort of stitch, the issue is quite different, so please let me know if you need a different problem solved.....the question you pose could have 2 meanings....this reply is for looping thread.

It is quite long, but just work through each section in order.

The "knotting up" can reveal a lot. If you have loose threads on one side or the other, the tension on the opposite side will be the culprit.

QUICK SUMMARY FIRST:
Ensure sharp new needle,
Thread guides and Bobbin are Clean & Clear of lint
Set Top Tesion to 4 ....then....
Balance Bobbin to suit.

TOP THREAD TENSION:
If the looping threads are on the underside as you sew, it is the top tension. Top tension ought to be between 4 & 6 (this variation to allow for the different weights of fabric in your projects).

IS YOUR NEEDLE SHARP ?
If you are using a needle that has seen quite a deal of work, or you suspect it may be blunt, change it for a new one !

TOP TENSION & GUIDES:
Make sure that when you thread the machine the presser foot is up so the thread goes between the discs and not to one side, top tension between 4 and 6, and that you have threaded through all the guides, including the last one, usually on the needle arm, just above the needle clamp.

It may be there is lint trapped between the discs, this will keep them slightly apart and reduce the actual tension, sometimes dramatically.

If tensions appear correct, and the thread is definitely in the channel between the discs, but still too loose and looping, try raising presser foot and remove your thread.

Now, with a 2" (50mm) wide strip piece of fabric 8 - 10" (20 - 25cm) moistened with methylated or denatured spirit, gently insert the fabric strip and clean between the discs with a see saw / to and fro action.

In the worst cases, gentle use of a needle to pick & remove the jam may be necessary, but be very gentle and make sure the tension is set at Zero and the presser foot is raised, (to disengage tension plates).... do not gouge or score the plates, they need a polished surface to work correctly.

BOBBIN TENSION:
Far less common, but if the loose threads are on the top, it is bobbin tension that is loose, it too may have lint in the spring and be giving a "false" tension.

I would not recommend fiddling with bobbin tension without good reason, it may end up with missing small screws and spring pieces, however, you can take the needle plate off to clean the hook race area (where bobbin case sits)

...this is just good housekeeping, my wife does this every time she replaces the bobbin....just take it out and clean the bobbin case and the fixed metal hook race with a small brush to remove lint. If there is a significant amount of lint, use a vacuum and small brush to get the worst.

Then wipe all this area with a cloth or cotton bud (Q tip) moistened (not soaked) with methylated spirit, especially if there appears to be fine dirty deposits....oil and lint combine to conspire against you.

If it seems likely that you ......really ....do .....actually .....need .....to adjust the bobbin case, first check there is no lint trapped in the metal spring where the thread is tensioned.

TOP LOADER:
Drop-in Bobbin case will look similar to this image with the tension screw in the middle of the metalwork....

cc3f045.jpg...the other screw at one end is holding it all together, so beware....it is not a tragedy to undo the whole lot and clean it, but very gingerly and lay the bits out in sequence and orientation, or you risk tearing your hair out !

FRONT LOADER:
....this is a bobbin case from a front loading machine and works in a very similar fashion to the top loader with drop in bobbin, again, if you dismantle it, take care so you can put it all back properly.

1eade63.jpg
FINISHING UP
GETTING THE BALANCE RIGHT:
When you are certain there's no trapped lint in top tension or bobbin, set the top tension to 4 and the bobbin tension to a point where you just begin to feel resistance.

Try using good quality thread of contrasting colours so you can more easily spot the changes. ie a different colour top and bottom just for the test.

Set your zigzag to one width less than maximum (eg. 5 of 6 ...or... 4 of 5 etc) and sew a sample for a few inches and check the result.... adjust the bobbin tension screw very little at a time, perhaps 1/16 of a turn.

You may find you are playing with this balance for some little while and if you are putting the needleplate on and off each time begin to think it cannot be correct to do this.....BUT....it is, and eventually, you do get a "feel" for the correct tension and then it happens quite quickly.....as a user you won't be doing it very often unless there is lint built up (or are there small hands at work around the house !?!?!)

OTHER ISSUES:
If you live near the ocean as we do, salt air can play havoc with metalwork inside and out, so to help minimise this, keep a few small packets of dessicant (silica gel) in your machine case....no case ? then make some sort of cover ! Same applies in any damp or humid environment, keep your machine dry and dust free.

Budget for a proper full service every couple of years (more often if heavily used) and if you don't use your machine for a few years, be aware that old oil will dry out and combining with dust and form a "clag" like glue (another reason for some sort of cover, even a teatowel !)

FINALLY, A WORD ON THREAD:
If it is worth spending the time, energy and money on making something that you would like to give lasting enjoyment......use quality thread, .......it may seem to cost a little more at the time, but the results, ease of use and added longevity will be worth the extra, and as a bonus, your tension troubles may be fewer and further between, because there is a more consistant diameter with good thread, and less compensating to be done by your tension plates and less thread breaks !

If you need any more help with this, just post back here, or, drop a line through the "Contact Us" page at www.bargainbox.com.au

Posted on Feb 23, 2008

bargainbox
  • 1388 Answers

SOURCE: My bottom thread is loose when sewing a straight stitch

Please TRY the solution BEFORE giving your considered rating.




Ensure that all is clean and free of lint and jams, this is the most likely cause....now for tension troubleshooting .......

This solution is for tension problems...if you cannot form any sort of stitch, the issue is quite different, so please let me know if you need a different problem solved.....

It is quite long, but just work through each section in order.
The "knotting up" can reveal a lot. If you have loose threads on one side or the other, the tension on the opposite side will be the culprit.

QUICK SUMMARY FIRST:
Ensure sharp new needle,
Thread guides and Bobbin are Clean & Clear of lint
Set Top Tesion to 4 ....then....
Balance Bobbin to suit.

TOP THREAD TENSION:
If the looping threads are on the underside as you sew, it is the top tension. Top tension ought to be between 4 & 6 (this variation to allow for the different weights of fabric in your
projects).

IS YOUR NEEDLE SHARP ?
If you are using a needle that has seen quite a deal of work, or you suspect it may be blunt, change it for a new one !

TOP TENSION & GUIDES:
Make sure that when you thread the machine the presser foot is up so the thread goes between the discs and not to one side, top tension between 4 and 6, and that you have threaded through all the guides, including the last one, usually on the needle arm, just above the needle clamp.

It may be there is lint trapped between the discs, this will keep them slightly apart and reduce the actual tension, sometimes dramatically.

If tensions appear correct, and the thread is definitely in the channel between the discs, but still too loose and looping, try raising presser foot and remove your thread.

Now, with a 2" (50mm) wide strip piece of fabric 8 - 10" (20 - 25cm) moistened with methylated or denatured spirit, gently insert the fabric strip and clean between the discs with
a see saw / to and fro action.

In the worst cases, gentle use of a needle to pick & remove the jam may be necessary, but be very gentle and make sure the tension is set at Zero and the presser foot is raised, (to
disengage tension plates).... do not gouge or score the plates, they need a polished surface to work correctly.

BOBBIN TENSION:
Far less common, but if the loose threads are on the top, it is bobbin tension that is loose, it too may have lint in the spring and be giving a "false" tension.

I would not recommend fiddling with bobbin tension without good reason, it may end up with missing small screws and spring pieces, however, you can take the needle plate off to clean
the hook race area (where bobbin case sits)

...this is just good housekeeping, my wife does this every time she replaces the bobbin....

just take it out and clean the bobbin case and the fixed metal hook race with a small brush to remove lint. If there is a significant amount of lint, use a vacuum and small brush to get the worst.

Then wipe all this area with a cloth or cotton bud (Q tip) moistened (not soaked) with methylated spirit, especially if there appears to be fine dirty deposits....oil and lint combine to conspire against you.

If it seems likely that you ......really ....do .....actually .....need .....to adjust the bobbin case, first check there is no lint trapped in the metal spring where the thread is tensioned.

TOP LOADER:
Drop-in Bobbin case will look similar to this image with the tension screw in the middle of the metalwork....

4c76dc1.jpg ...the other screw at one end is holding it all together, so beware....it is not a tragedy to undo the whole lot and clean it, but very gingerly and lay the bits out in sequence and orientation, or you risk tearing your hair out !

FRONT LOADER:
....this is a bobbin case from a front loading machine and works in a very similar fashion to the top loader with drop in bobbin, again, if you dismantle it, take care so you can put it all
back properly.
165ca5c.jpg FINISHING UP
GETTING THE BALANCE RIGHT:
When you are certain there's no trapped lint in top tension or bobbin, set the top tension to 4 and the bobbin tension to a point where you just begin to feel resistance.

Try using good quality thread of contrasting colours so you can more easily spot the changes.

Set your zigzag to one width less than maximum (eg. 5 of 6 ...or... 4 of 5 etc) and sew a sample for a few inches and check the result.... adjust the bobbin tension screw very little at
a time, perhaps 1/16 of a turn.

You may find you are playing with this balance for some little while and if you are putting the needleplate on and off each time begin to think it cannot be correct to do this.....BUT....it is,
and eventually, you do get a "feel" for the correct tension and then it happens quite quickly.....as a user you won't be doing it very often unless there is lint built up (or are there small hands at work around the house !?!?!)

OTHER ISSUES:
If you live near the ocean as we do, salt air can play havoc with metalwork inside and out, so to help minimise this, keep a few small packets of dessicant (silica gel) in your machine
case....no case ? then make some sort of cover !

Same applies in any damp or humid environment, keep your machine dry and dust free.

Budget for a proper full service every couple of years (more often if heavily used) and if you don't use your machine for a few years, be aware that old oil will dry out and combining with
dust and form a "clag" like glue (another reason for some sort of cover, even a teatowel !)

FINALLY, A WORD ON THREAD:
If it is worth spending the time, energy and money on making something that you would like to give lasting enjoyment......use quality thread, .......it may seem to cost a little more at the
time, but the results, ease of use and added longevity will be worth the extra, and as a bonus, your tension troubles may be fewer and further between, because there is a more consistent diameter with good thread, and less compensating to be done by your tension plates and less thread breaks !


Posted on Jul 24, 2008

e-Guru
  • 3917 Answers

SOURCE: I have a Sapphire 835,and

Hi

Loops on the bottom of the fabric = inadequate top tension
Loops on top of the fabric = inadequate bottom tension. this is probably a tension problem. there is a discrepancy between top and bobbin thread tension. The looping is a too loose tension in the bobbin or too tight a tension on the top thread. in either case, and regardless of cause, the two are out of synch. Try adjusting bobbin tension according to your machine type. after adjusting the bobbin tension sew on a piece of scrap. use a medium sized stitch. check and adjust and test until you are satisfied. If the looping isn't severe, adjust top string tension slightly looser.

Here are other causes for this problem, but they are more unusual and should be considered only if the common remedies don't answer.

If it's the bottom thread, the bobbin isn't wound or loaded correctly, or it's the wrong bobbin. Check to see the bobbin fits in the bobbin case properly. Don't mess with the bobbin tension unless you have to. If the machine had been working before and is not now, the problem is most likely not in the bobbin tension. The adjustment range is really tiny, and it's easy to mess it up.If it still loops after you redo the bobbin, you might also check the parts around the bobbin. Clean up all the fuzz that had collected around the bobbin. Remove all fragments of thread and fuzz with brush and vacuum (don't use compressed air or canned air or blow -- it pushes fuzz farther into the machine where you can't get to it.) Pay special attention to the area around the feed dogs and the sewing hook area.
Lubricate the machine according to the manual's instructions if the manual describes using oil.

Please get back to us if you have further query or else please accept the solution.

Thanks for contacting fixya.com

Posted on Sep 04, 2011

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2 Answers

How to adjust the bobbin tension.


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.

Apr 26, 2015 | Singer 4423 Sewing Machine

1 Answer

Bottom thread is still loose even if i try to balance the tension, how do i balance the thread tension?


You bobbin tension CAN be adjusted. First, thread your machine with different colors in the top and bobbin, set your top tension at its default, and run a line of straight, and then a line of zigzag stitches, and compare the results at the top and bottom. You will be adjusting your bobbin to your top tension. If the top tension looks like a straight line instead of stitching and the zigzag looks like "chicken tracks" instead of a zigzag, but the bottom looks like a zigzag, your bobbin tension is too loose.

Remove the bobbin case, and locate the straight-slot screw. There are generally two; one is a Phillips and one is straight--you want the straight one. Leave the other alone.

The rule is "lefty-loosy, righty-tighty." If your stitching displays the above symptoms, it needs to be tightened, so turn 1/4 turn to the right--no more--then test again. You will need patience, but don't turn more than that. It is easy to do, but if you don't do it systematically, you can make things worse, and very slight adjustments can alter the stitching significantly.

Apr 15, 2015 | Singer Sewing Machines

1 Answer

Bobbin thread is making big loops ,not tight stiches.


Sounds like your bobbin case tension has loosened. First, take a piece of scrap fabric and sew a line of zigzag and another line of straight stitches. If the top of the zigzag stitching looks like chicken tracks, but the bottom looks normal, the top is tighter than the bottom. Take the bobbin case out and locate two screws on the side. One is a Phillips--DO NOT TOUCH IT--the second is a straight-slot--that is the one you want. Remember, lefty loosey, righty tighty! In your case, you wand to turn it 1/4 turn to the right to tighten, and then put it back and test again. You should see SOME improvement--it many not correct it entirely but you'll know you're on the right track. Keep at it, doing ONLY 1/4 turn and then testing, until it's in balance again.

Aug 04, 2014 | Singer 2263 Mechanical Sewing Machine

1 Answer

Why do the stitches on the underside of the fabric look like one straight line, not individual stitches as on the top of the fabric?


This is an indication that either the bottom tension is too tight or the top is too loose. try tightening the top tension 1 number at a time till it looks good.

Jun 29, 2014 | Janome Sewing Machines

2 Answers

The bottom stitching looks like a line and not stitches the top stitching is fine


whether its bias or straight does not matter to machine. loosen the bobbin tension and put more tension on take up spring by inserting a screwdriver in the slot of the top thread tensioner. turn to right.

Dec 13, 2012 | Juki DDL8300N Sewing Machine

1 Answer

The bottom stitching looks like a line and not stitches the top stitching is fine


try adjusting the top thread tension and see if that helps
also try changing the thread.
also change the needle--make sure it's the right needle for the fabric
being sewed.

Dec 13, 2012 | Juki DDL8300N Sewing Machine

1 Answer

Kenmore 19233 computerized sewing machine


On my machine I find that my bottom and top free motion stitches are more uniform when I set my needle thread tension at 8 or 9. Also, you might want to use a top stitch needle.

Good luck,
SewReady

Nov 07, 2008 | Kenmore 19233 Computerized Sewing Machine

1 Answer

Can't get a neat straight and stretch stitch underneath


Sounds like a bottom tension problem, to be sure I would have to have a look, I would suggest you have it looked at. Not sure about the materials you are sewing and have serious doubts as to whether the machine you are using is up for the job and will give you a satisfactory finish. It is possible a "walking foot" machine is what you need.

Mar 25, 2008 | Bernina Activa 130

2 Answers

Thread tension problem when sewing on heavy fabrics


Sometimes when I need to use heavy thread for top stitching to reinforce a seam that has come undone, I will use the heavy thread on the top and regular thread on the bottom. I haven't tried it the other way around for hemming but I would think it would work. I do not currently have a Bernina.

Jan 15, 2008 | Bernina Artista 180

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