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My machine is not picking up the stitches. I have rethreaded, checked needle and tension.

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  • Sewing Machines Master
  • 7,365 Answers

try these suggestions
Not picking up thread can be several issues
1.bobbin is miss wound
2. bobbin case isn't snapped in properly
3. you're using the wrong type bobbin
4. needle is bent or burred
5. check bobbin area for lint & loose threads
6. little oil--check operation manual for this
7.machine is out of time --done by service tech
8.check automatic thread cutter to see if it’s bent
but most of the time the issue is once again mis-threading or the thread coming off take up lever
sewing machine needles put in incorrectly
Check & make sure needle is in the needle holder correctly.
Check your manual for threading diagram
check bobbin area including case for lint & loose threads
Take the needle plate off & clean under neath it ( if your machine has screws that hold the needle plate on be careful NOT TO DAMAGE THE SCREWS) because a damaged screw that has a burr on it can pull fabric
Each time you start to sew
1.make sure there’s 2 to 3 inches of top thread when you put the needle down for the bobbin thread
2.make sure there is a 2 to 3 inch of bobbin thread so the top thread can pick it up
3.Pull the tail of the top and bobbin thread behind the presser foot
hope these help--please rate this with the thumbs in the upper right hand corner-thank you

Posted on Aug 06, 2010

  • 2 more comments 
  • skihillmtn Dec 19, 2010

    # 8 ~ It was my needle, I had it in the wrong way without ever realizing this. Thanks for the nice list to run through! I would have never thought to check the needle.

  • Margaret Cass Feb 28, 2014

    This machine was sent to a singer repair shop in NY State only to be cleaned. when it came back the whole bobbin area was changed from the orginal to one from Japan, why? I guess becase they sell part from vinetage machines, but it hasn't wroked sience

  • Margaret Cass Feb 28, 2014

    Add a Commentseeing it not my machine, the only thing he could do is have it changed back

  • if the machine hasn't worked since, then the singer repair shop should be notified that the machine is still not working. and tell them that the bobbin area is different. ask why they changed the bobbin area ? tell them who ever owns the machine is not satisfied with what they did to the machine.. I would suggest even complain to the singer website thru their contact us section...if the machine is under warrenty then using their repair shop is the normal option, or the person who owns the machine can try a repair shop near them and tell them what happened to the machine and see if what they charge to check the machine..

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1 Answer

My machine is skipping stiches it seems its not picking up from the bobbin


Install a brand new needle and confirm it is inserted with the flat side facing the proper direction.. A bent, damaged needle will sometimes cause skipped stitches or even needle strikes inside the machine. A new needle is the least expensive cure for a lot of sewing machine problems. The needle should be changed about every 8 hours of sewing or at least when starting a new project.

Remove the top thread. ALWAYS RAISE the presser foot and rethread from the beginning. Verify the thread path is correct.

Sometimes, skipped stitches will occur if the needle, thread, and fabric are incompatible. Be sure to use the correct needle for your project. Use a good quality thread--AVOID old or bargain bin thread!

If the machine continues to skip stitches, then it may be out of time. Search for sewing machine timing or take it for service.

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Remove the thread from the machine. ALWAYS RAISE the presser foot and rethread the machine from the beginning. Verify the path is correct. The standard tension setting is the midway point although you will most likely need to tweak this for your particular machine.

If you are still having problems, you may need to readjust the bobbin tension.


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was the presser foot lowered? check if the loop-taker is properly installed or seated.

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The 335 has a two thread chain stitch (stitch type 401), and the overlock side (right needle side), is a three thread plain overlock. If you are describing the plain overlock as the problem, I would first suggest the following in re-threading:

1. Thread the upper looper
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If the needle threaded, you cannot re-thread the lower looper without breaking the thread.
In order to thread the lower looper, the lower looper must pass by the needle thus picking up the needle thread. So, instead of threading the lower looper thread underneath the needle thread, the looper would be threaded on top and cannot sew without breaking the thread.
Make sure that the threads are bedded between the tension disks. Check this by stretching the thread fore and aft of the tension disks as well as visually noting that the threads are not accidentally threaded behind the disks. You can also loosen the tension disks when threading so as to allow the threads to bed deeply between the disks.
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