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Bernina 1031 Having problems with feed dogs getting stuck in the down position. Will pop up with help but not with the knob. Had it serviced by a bernina service tech and it worked for a while. Now it is happening again. What can the problem be?

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  • jjsm4 Apr 24, 2008

    Already cleaned the machine **** and span before contacting you. Also oiled the bobbin case where my book says to. I can hear and feel the knob turning properly, it just isn't catching the innards to flip the feed dogs back up. I have no problem taking it back in to the shop, but if the man claims to have fixed the problem, why is it happening again?


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  • 1,388 Answers

Remove the needleplate and check for a buildup of lint between the teeth, this is the most likely scenario.....clear out all the other lint while it is open, and do it regularly.

A small brush and vacuum cleaner are useful, just remove the bobbin case etc first !!

If you want any more help with this, just post back here, or, drop a line through the "Contact Us" page at

Posted on Apr 24, 2008

  • Bargain Box
    Bargain Box Apr 25, 2008

    The feeddog mechanism is dis-engaged via a slide switch, usually near the bobbin case/hook race on a front loading machine, for a top loader they tend to be near where the free arm joins the main body and may be at the front, or rear.

    When the feeddogs are dropped for free motion quilting, the cam is dis-engaged until you raise the feeddogs is then necessary to rotate handwheel one complete revolution for the cam to re-engage, thus raising feeddogs.

    If this is not happening, there is a problem

    1. in the spring which normally re-engages the cam, or

    2. the cam is otherwise obstructed, possibly by debris (pins, needles, lint etc)

    3. the spring is broken, or

    4. there is too much friction between the shaft and the cam collar for it to restore the correct position.....grit, lint and old oil forming a glue. other words, a mechanical problem.

    I have only been able to find a very small image of this model and would guess it to be a front loading bobbin.

    It also appears to have a front & rear 2 piece moulded case rather than top, bottom, front, back and sides.....tricky to gain access and not recommended without a service manual as there are a multitude of hidden screws and plastic clips that are easily broken.

    If this is within the 90 days normally associated with a service warantee (or 12 mths for a new machine) and has been ongoing since the service, I would suggest a phone call to arrange to meet with the technician ASAP to show them what you are experiencing....even if it slightly over the 90 days, they ought to have a look for you, it is your ongoing business they will be keen to attract and good service is not only good business, it is good for business.

    This problem really needs someone to look at the mechanism on the bench in my opinion, and any more email suggestions I may offer for "busting it open" to fiddle around inside may do more harm than good.

    Best wishes for a speedy resolution.


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