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Kenmore 385 sewing machine gets stuck in reverse

The reverse button gets stuck when I use it. I am able to take the side cover off and use a screw driver to pop it back out but what can I do so that it won't keep doing this? Thanks!

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Re: Kenmore 385 sewing machine gets stuck in reverse

Make sure that your machine is set to sew forward. The reverse button on your machine should have a spring loaded return. If the spring is in place, and doesn't appear stretched, try a drop (just a drop) of sewing machine oil. Please use sewing machine oil. Not WD-40, or any other household oil. If the machine hasn't been serviced in a while, or used alot recently, they knob may need to be "reminded" that its supposed to go in and out. :) After applying the oil, push the knob in and pop it back out like you have been. If nothing else is wrong, it should loosen up and move freely.

Posted on Dec 04, 2007

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How do I oil a Kenmore 385 sewing machine

Are these the pictures you have?

KENMORE 385 12612090 Owner Manual Oiling The Machine Oil The Underside

Something you can do is slightly wiggle the handwheel (do not turn it in reverse). The handwheel should always turn toward you.
Look at the pictures and watch where metal rubs on metal that might match the picture and apply one drop of fresh, good quality sewing machine oil.


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I have an old sewing machine in my attic, i just recently put it to use. but i cant seem to find the reverse stitch button. im only 14, it was my moms sewing machine. but shes no longer with us, so im...

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Hopefully this is only a mechanical problem that can be fixed with oil. If not it is either a stepper motor or circuit board. If you are not comfortable with removing covers and oiling then it needs to go to the shop.
Good luck!

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The reverse button is attached to link that moves a lever to make the machine sew in reverse. The lever is spring loaded so it returns to forward sewing when the button is released. Either the spring has come off or there is a bind in the lever(oil it). In order to solve the problem, the covers must be removed.

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