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My bobbin thread won't come up, the top thread just tangles down below

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  • 241 Answers

Several things can cause this start by replacing the needle. Make sure it is oriented such that the tip of the hook will pass in the scarf of the needle. The reason I write it this way is you have not described the machine you have.

Tangles can be caused by the take up lever not threaded or it could be a burr on the hook. It could also be the clearance between the bobbin case and the cushion spring.

I hope this jargon does not discourage you from trying the simple fix. My customers have learned it is easier to bring me their machine to diagnose it. Every day we fix a simple problem in under 5 minutes. and send them back to their sewing project for the cost of a smile.

Posted on Oct 13, 2013

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

  • 29 Answers

SOURCE: a horrible tangle

This is a bit late, could the bobbin case not be seated properly? You need to put it into place and then turn it clockwise until it seats soundly in the opening. Also, check for burrs...the needle may have left a rough mark on the plastic or metal in the bobbin area. A piece of batting, or even an old knee hi should snag on any rough areas.

Posted on Jul 14, 2007

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SOURCE: Singer 4622 drop in bobbin rattles

Recheck top threading

Posted on Jul 07, 2009

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SOURCE: burnette 65 bobbin tangling can't adjust thread tension

Have you replaced the needle with a new one? Your needle may be bent or in wrong, or the wrong size. You may have a bad needle. Check that the upper thread path is running freely and is not tangled or wrapped around anything. Make sure that the bobbin is unwinding in the correct direction as well, most bobbins, this is clockwise as the bobbin faces you. If you are using inexpensive thread, it could be the thread that is the culprit. Uneven thread in the needle will not flow through the needle properly, and cause bunching as well. Save it for the bobbin, and use good thread in the top.

Posted on Jul 17, 2009

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have a brother 8200 upgraded to a 8500. The touch screen seems to move to the right after some use. Is there a way that I can fix this or does it have to go to the shop.

Posted on Aug 23, 2009

bargainbox
  • 1388 Answers

SOURCE: top thread looks fine, but bottom thread is all

Please TRY the solution BEFORE giving your considered rating.
Specific detail on bobbin case adjustment (with picture) near halfway down reply, the remainder will help you achieve a balance of top and bottom tensions.

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

bargainbox.com.au

Posted on Aug 30, 2009

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Try these suggestions and see if they help
1. Change the needle--use a needle that's for the fabric being sewed
2. Rethread the machine--top --make sure to use every thread guide
3. try a different bobbin--make sure bobbin is inserted correctly into the bobbin case, & make sure the bobbin is turned the correct way in the bobbin case
4. make sure the thread has not come off the thread take up lever
5. Clean under the needle plate & in the bobbin area for lint or threads
6. Check to make sure the bobbin is not warped or damaged
7. Make sure the bobbin case is correctly in the machine,, if it's a top loading bobbin you may need to have the bobbin case checked to see if it's damaged or see if the hook and hook race has a problem
8. Also could be a timing problem, and the machine would need to be checked.

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Unthread the machine fully. Remove the bobbin. Is the bobbin thread the same as the top thread? Is it a Quality thread (yes, cheapie thread can give big issues!!) Do you have several different threads wound onto the bobbin?? Is the bobbin thread wound on quite tight? If you push your finger nail into the thread wound onto the bobbin, it must not feel soft or spongy. Check if there is any roughness / burr on the any part of the shuttle hook. If so, remove it with 800 grade wet and dry abrasive or similar. Put in a NEW needle as per user manual specs (not a 'new' one you used before 'just for a little bit'.!) REPEAT - put in a NEW needle - amuse me!!. Place the bobbin into the bobbin holder (the CORRECT direction - yes there is a Right and a Wrong direction!), thread it ready to put back into the machine. BEFORE you do, hold onto the thread tail and let the bobbin and bobbin case dangle. Thread should slip thru when you give a gentle pull upwards. If no slip, loosen the tension on the tension finger a LITTLE. If it slides down easy, tighten it a little. Fit the bobbin into the machine. Lift the presser foot (this releases the top thread tension discs) Check there are no bits of thread or fluff between the tension discs Rethread the top thread - check the thread path is 100% correct. Hold onto the end of the needle thread and draw up the bobbin thread. Hold both threads, start to sew - check the result. Tip : If you use a different color bobbin thread (same brand etc etc) it will help you to see more easily what is going on. You should be seeing some of the bobbin thread color on the top side of the sewing. If not, INCREASE top tension a little - retry.If there is a lot showing, decrease top tension. Good luck

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