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Bernina Activa 230 - how to fix tension

How to adjust tension

Posted by Anonymous on

6 Suggested Answers

6ya6ya
  • 2 Answers

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

bargainbox
  • 1388 Answers

SOURCE: how do I know which tension to adjust?

Are you sure that a stitch is being created each time, or is it missing some....

On a scrap, sew a zigzag to ensure that at least the stitches are being formed, if not, or missing some, look to timing.

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 consistant diameter with good thread, and less compensating to be done by your tension plates and less thread breaks !

If you want 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 24, 2008

Mimito7
  • 128 Answers

SOURCE: user manual download bernina activa 140 sewing machine

Try this... www.2instructions.com

Posted on Apr 30, 2009

  • 13 Answers

SOURCE: hot to thread a bernina activa 240 sewing maching

http://www.sewusa.com/Sewing_Machine_Threading_Diagrams.htm

Posted on May 27, 2009

Mongo32
  • 111 Answers

SOURCE: I have a Bernina Activa 130. The bottom threads

bunching threads bunching means that upper tension or threading is wrong

Posted on Jul 08, 2009

  • 14 Answers

SOURCE: user manual download bernina activa 140 sewing machine

just visit www.janomestuff.com

Posted on Sep 17, 2009

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1 Answer

I have a Necchi Omega 6147. How can I adjust the drop-in bobbin to use upholstery thread to sew heavy fabrics or leather?


You would need to adjust the tension screw so the tension is looser than usual. However, remember to mark the setting BEFORE making any adjustments so you will know where to return the original setting.

Bobbin Tension How and Why Tension is Adjusted

Understanding Bobbin Tension

Understanding Thread Tension Threads

...

Feb 10, 2017 | Necchi Sewing Machines

2 Answers

How do I set the bobbin tension


How to change the tension on a sewing machine?
Adjust your top tension if it's too tight. To decrease your top tension if it is too tight, turn your knob so the numbers are decreasing. Try ½ to 1 number lower, then test the stitches on a piece of scrap fabric. Continue until it looks even on both sides and you can no longer see the bottom thread on the top.

How to Adjust the Tension on a Sewing Machine: 13 Steps

www.wikihow.com/Adjust-the-Tension-on-a-Sewing-Machine Search for: How to change the tension on a sewing machine?
https://www.google.co.uk/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&rlz=1C1CHBD_en-GBGB719GB719&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=Sewing+Machines+How+do+I+set+the+bobbin+tension ..try this link

Dec 04, 2016 | Sewing Machines

1 Answer

How do you adjust everything in the bobbin casing is there seems to be a lot of adjustments and I'm clueless


Why are you wanting to adjust the bobbin mechanics? What is your machine doing or not doing that you think it should? Usually, tension adjustments are made on the top tension. Bobbin tension adjustments are seldom adjusted unless the top tension does not address the issue.

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Nov 16, 2016 | Sewing Machines

1 Answer

How to adjust tension on bottom?


Usually, tension adjustments are made to the top. The bobbin tension is adjusted mainly only when using a different weight of thread (either very thin or very thick). Very seldom is the bobbin tension changed.

Understanding Thread Tension Threads

http://ohyoucraftygal.blogspot.com/2013/10/sewing-lesson-10-how-to-fix-tension-on.html

https://www.craftsy.com/blog/2015/03/how-to-adjust-sewing-machine-tension/

Nov 08, 2016 | Sewing Machines

1 Answer

My reverse sewing tension is to tight on my Bernina Activa 220 Sewing machine. Forward is fine. How can I loosen it without affecting the forward tension.


tension is set by the adjustment and is not affected by material direction
it is only the walking foot that changes direction and not the sewing action
discus this problem with a service center as there may be a service issue

Aug 11, 2016 | Bernina Sewing Machines

1 Answer

The bobbin thread shows to the front. Does the bobbin or thread tension need adjusted


Generally, tension adjustments are made using the upper thread tension. Most likely the upper tension is set too tight and is pulling the bobbin thread up. Loosen the upper tension and try again. Tension is accurate when the upper thread and bobbin thread meet in the middle of the fabric. Whenever fabric, thread & needle are changed, there may be a need to adjust the upper tension.

HINT: When threading the upper thread, make sure the presser foot is RAISED during threading to make sure the upper tension disks are open and the thread seats properly.

Bobbin tension is only adjusted when the tensions are way out of whack. Only slight turns of the bobbin case tension screw are made in graduated movements and testing occurs after each adjustment.

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Jan 20, 2016 | Sewing Machines

1 Answer

How do I set bobbin tension?


Generally bobbin tension is the last thing to try to adjust on your machine. Most sewists adjust the bobbin tension ONLY if they are using very lightweight or very heavyweight thread in the bobbin. Most sewists will advise to make all possible adjustments to the top tension before tackling the bobbin tension to resolve issues.

Try searching YouTube videos or this may be helpful:

Bobbin Tension How and Why Tension is Adjusted

Understanding Bobbin Tension

Setting the Bobbin Tension on your sewing machine

Liz Kettle adjusting your bobbin case tension 1 wmv

How to fix Tension Don Panic

....



Sep 27, 2015 | Janome Memory Craft 3000

1 Answer

Why won't my Bernina Activa 230 P.E. start when I turn it on?


it sounds like a computer problem. I suggest taking the machine to some other repair shop and see what they say.

May 05, 2014 | Bernina Sewing Machines

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