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Juki DDL-8700 thread keeps breaking when reverse sewing

Just had my machine serviced and about a week later my thread keeps breaking when I try to backstitch. It is so frustrating. I have played around with the tension, and it keeps happening. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

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  • ShakaDog May 23, 2008

    Thank you! I am thinking it is the needle plate. The repairman had changed my old one with a newer used one, but I'm not sure it's even the correct one for my machine. When I put my original old one on again, it seems to be working fine. I am going to try to get a new one today. Thanks so much for your response!

  • 1908 Aug 15, 2008

    hey i just bought a used DDL-8700 and i have the same broblem,keeps breaking my thread.I dodnt know what to do.Im trying to find a thread guide but im very unlucky i cannot find anywhere.Please tell me what to do .I dont know if im putting it in the correct order.Thank you


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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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SOURCE: problems when sewing over heavy jean hems

Are you using the correct type of needle? have a word with your needle supplier and explain the problem. Different threads and different thickness material need different top and bottom tension adjustments.
Can I suggest sew one thickness material at a time with tension adjustments for that thickness. Then change the tensions and do a batch of thicker material.

Posted on Mar 29, 2008

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SOURCE: threading a juki ddl 5530

Go to this link and you will find how to thread your machine.

Posted on Apr 02, 2008

  • 1388 Answers

SOURCE: tangle in bobbin area, stuck needle

Please TRY the solution BEFORE giving your considered rating.

Ensure that all is clean and free of lint and jams, this is the most likely 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.

Ensure sharp new needle, 
Thread guides and Bobbin are Clean & Clear of lint
Set Top Tesion to 4 ....then....
Balance Bobbin to suit.

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 

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 !

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 .....actually .....need 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....

4c76dc1.jpg ...the other screw at one end is holding it all together, so 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 
back properly.
165ca5c.jpg FINISHING UP
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 is, 
and eventually, you do get a "feel" for the correct tension and then it happens quite 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 ? 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 !)

If it is worth spending the time, energy and money on making something that you would like to give lasting enjoyment......use quality thread, 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 !

Posted on Nov 13, 2008

  • 5 Answers

SOURCE: My thread is breaking when


Posted on Mar 24, 2009

SOURCE: Juki DDL-5530 Sewing Machine Manual

go to login industrial sewing machine and you can doenload manual for juki machine

Posted on Aug 20, 2009

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The top thread continues to break once I begin sewing. I have done all the recommended changes (tension controls, etc.) Everything is threaded correctly. It appears the top thread or the bobbin thread...

I know you've said you have checked the tensions but that usually is the problem. When you pull on the top thread after it goes through the tension but before you thread it through the needle is there some tension but not so much that it breaks when you gently pull on it? It will be a bit harder to pull it at the point after it goes through the needle but it should have a bit of give there too without breaking.

Also check the bobbin again. Take it out of the machine and examine how the thread is wound around the bobbin. Is it all criss crossed or is it fairly evenly wound? Is it in the right direction and through the tension slot? Now dangle it by the thread while in the bobbin case. It should not just reel out to the floor but should slip a bit with some tension and hang there. A slight **** of the wrist should cause it to release a bit more thread and drop a bit more to the floor. It should allow slip but it shouldn't just reel out fast.

When you reinsert the bobbin case into the machine you should feel/hear a slight click as it catches into place.

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The thread will break when it has no 'give'. Either the tensions aren't quite right or it is catching somewhere along the way through the various guides where you thread it. Oh and make sure the spool itself is freely turning on the spindle! Sometimes it is because of catching at that point and simply turning the spool upside down so it can't catch will solve the problem ! :)

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How frustrating for you - I will assume that "very stretchy fabric" would be lycra or a jersey with lycra or spandex in it. This can be tricky fabric to tackle on the sewing machine, especially if it is very light weight, textured or open weave. So use a Smetz "Stretch" needle, not just a regular ball point and a good quality polyester thread such as gutterman or metrosene. this link is great info on sewing threads,
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