Question about Sewing Machines
What kind of machine is this? Is this some kind of commercial sewing machine? There are no cable adjustments on any of the machines I am aware of.
Posted on Apr 12, 2015
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
SOURCE: sudden knotting under fabric
I have an Elna 2005 machine and had a similar but opposite problem whereby the tension up top was too tight - thread wouldn't pull smoothly. I found adjusting the feed dog lever slightly helped the stitches a lot, even though the needle tension up top is no better. Hope that helps! :-s
Posted on Oct 29, 2007
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
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.
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.
Drop-in Bobbin case will look similar to this image with the tension screw in the middle of the metalwork....
...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 !
....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
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 !?!?!)
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
SOURCE: thread or bobbin tension
Thread tension. Beware of adjusting the bobbin screw. Pfaffs maintain their tensions just fine without adjusting the bobbin tension, unless you're using some crazy thick or fine thread. If you must change your bobbin tension, you would be well-advised to buy an extra bobbin case, because re-calibrating your tensions after changing them can be less than fun.
Increase your top tension, and your looping should cease. I normally keep my tension around 4.5. Also make sure you're using a good quality thread, and that there's nothing in the upper tension assemblies. Sometimes a tiny piece of debris can keep the top tension from applying enough tension, so turning the machine off and blowing some canned air in there can help as well.
Posted on Mar 11, 2009
#14 needle is way big for cotton napkin scrap. a #10 is good for most lightweight fabric. #14 is for sewing denim or levis, like that.
the tension problems on almost all machines regardless of price usually fall on the upper tension. the lower bobbin tension is factory set and it's rare you should ever need to mess with it.
if you have a drop in bobbin (top loading), tighten the adjustment screw all the way and then back it off 1/4 turn. if your machine uses a shuttle bobbin, tighten the adjustment screw all the way and then back it off in 1/4-turn increments until you can hold it in the air like a yo-yo and cause to bobbin case to fall slightly dipping your hand.
A dull needle and stitch length will also mess up your stitch. The idea is to narrow the problem down to one thing and one thing only -- UPPER THREAD TENSION.
So, if you have the right size needle for the job, with the right thread, and if your stitch length selection is correct (usually between 2 and 3 or 8-to-10 stitches per inch, the problem should be with your upper thread tension.
An easy way to fix this then is to remember: Loops on top, upper tension drop. Loops below, upper tension grow. If you get loops on top of your work, lower (drop) your upper thread tension to a lower number. If you get loops on the bottom, raise the upper thread tension.
Different stitches on the same machine will require different upper thread tension settings. Don't be afraid of it. Just remember the pneumonic: loops on top, tension drop, loops below, tension grow -- referring to upper thread tension.
have fun :)
Posted on Apr 02, 2010
SOURCE: bobbin tension is too loose
"Birdnesting" occurs when there is no tension on the needle thread to pull the bobbin thread. This is easily corrected by rethreading the machine, following the threading path carefully and making sure the thread is fully engaged in the tension mechanism.
Posted on Apr 16, 2010
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