Question about Kenmore Drop-In Bobbin 16231 Mechanical Sewing Machine

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Machine wont pick up bobbin thread

It works if I don't push the needle all the way in. Tried different needles but same issue. If I push needle all the way in it worn pick up bobbin thread.

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Needle won't pick up thread I think the timing is off, how do I retime it?

Posted on Nov 18, 2007

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Inside where the bobbin is there's a double hook which rotates in sync with the needle. with the needle down all the way, this hook grabs the upper thread and creates the loop for the stitch. sounds like the needle is too long. check your operating manual for replacement.

Posted on Aug 25, 2007

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1 Answer

My upper thread wont pick up the bobbin thread suddenly. How do I fix that problem?


Install a brand new needle. A bent/dull/damaged needle sometimes will not pick up bobbin thread.

Check that the needle is installed facing the correct direction.

Also check that the bobbin is wound smoothly, the bobbin is turning the correct direction in the bobbin case, and the bobbin tension is threaded correctly.

If it still will not pick up the bobbin thread, there is most likely a timing issue, ie the needle is arriving at the wrong time to intercept the bobbin thread. Search the internet for sewing machine timing discussions or take it for service.

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Install a brand new needle. Make sure it is installed correctly.

Remove the bobbin/bobbin case from the machine. Check that the bobbin is turning the correct direction and the bobbin tension is threaded correctly. Reinstall the bobbin case and confirm that it is latched into place.

Retest your machine. Slowly turn the handwheel and watch the needle descend and see if it picks up the bobbin thread. If not, then there is probably a sewing machine timing issue. Take it for service.

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I can't get my bobbin thread to pull up.


Be sure to use a brand new needle and that it is the correct needle for your machine, that it is installed correctly (flat side facing the correct direction) and is pushed all the way up.

Check that the bobbin is loaded and threaded correctly in the bobbin case and there is at least 6" of thread tail.

If it still will not pick up the bobbin thread, then there is most likely a timing issue with your machine, ie the needle is arriving at the wrong time to intercept the bobbin thread. Take it for service.

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Wont pickup bobbin thread when sewing.


Make sure you are using a brand new needle. Bent/damaged/dull needles frequently will fail to pick up the thread.

If it continues to skip stitches, it most likely has a needle/hook timing issue--the needle arrives at the bobbin at the wrong time to intercept the bobbin thread.

There are web sites and videos available that discuss sewing machine timing, or you can take it for service.

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First, install a brand new needle. Used/worn/bent needles will sometimes fail to pick up the bobbin thread.

Make sure the bobbin is installed correctly in the bobbin case.

If it still will not pick up the bobbin thread, most likely the machine is out of time (the needle arrives at the incorrect time to intercept the bobbin thread). Take it for service or search the internet for web sites or videos dealing with sewing machine timing.

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1 Answer

Why doesn't the needle pick up the bobbin thread ?


Try installing a brand new needle. Make sure it is pushed all the way up and that it is facing the correct direction. Check that the bobbin is loaded and threaded correctly.

If the machine still fails to pick up the bobbin thread, then it most likely has a needle/hook timing issue. Take it for service.

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My Singer 7430 is not picking up the bobbin thread. My husband and I have spent the better half of our day trying to get the machine to work. We have changed out the needles and the threads. Tried...


Try entirely rethreading your machine. Top thread and bobbin thread. Sometimes the thread is just some place it's not supposed to be or it is not in the tension springs all the way. Also check to make sure the needle you are using is the correct length for your machind. Let me know how it goes.

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Needle won't pick up bobbin thread. Has been working fine all week. I changed the needle, took out the bobbin case, cleaned inside but there were no threads or lint. I rethreaded machine and tried a new...


Most of the time it is because the needle was inserted with the flat side facing you instead of away from you. And for the heck of it, put in a different needle, there may have been a burr or some defect on your new needle. Other than that, it could be your timing.

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Have you tried a new needle?

If re-threading, changing the brand of thread, etc. does not work, then it's likely your machine is out of time. Search for sewing machine timing or take it for service.

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