Sewing a pillow case and suddenly the needle won't move --- at all. With pliers broke needle, removed fabric. The large wheel which runs the needle etc. won't budge. The bobbin feature works. To engage this feature, have to unlock wheel. All that is fine. Just the needle won't move. Any ideas? Thanks. Lisa
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Re: Sears Kenmore 1168280 (Old machine not used much)
Untangle any mess under and around the needleplate very gingerly trimming threads as you go if necessary....remove and clear.
Undo the needle clamp and remove the remains of the needle.
Open the door for the bobbin and bobbin case and undo the clips holding the hook in place......don't force anything, just ease any tangle loose slowly.
You may want to take a photo of how it goes back together if unfamiliar, or lay the bits out sensibly, so you can replace easily later.
Inside the bobbin/hook area is the most likely region for thread jamming the motion of everything, so make sure all is clear and clean, then.......
Without replacing the bobbin or hook, test the handwheel after cleaning before re-assembly.
You may also want to check the take-up crank for thread jams........the small arm in the top cover that moves up/down to "take-up" the top thread has a cam attached to the top shaft and often tangles thread around the shaft, open the L side cover to access.......remove thread by unwinding handwheel manually ....again be patient and careful not to break threads.
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Will the handwheel move at all? If so, undo the needle clamp (the thingie that holds the needle in) and raise the needle bar (the thingie that the needle is inserted into.
Remove the bobbin cover and try to get the bobbin out -- bobbin and bobbin case both out. With luck, you can now grab the needle with a pair of pliers and pull it straight up and out of the bobbin case area. If not, try to figure out what's holding the needle in position, and see if you can break the needle (wear safety goggles!) with a couple pairs of pliers and then disentangle the mess.
In any case, the needle is a goner, don't even try to salvage it. Needles are cheap and disposable.
I had someone bring me a machine in similar condition... what I wound up doing was to unclamp the needle, then cut the giant wad of thread and fabric out from under the needle plate with an exacto knife, and then I could pull out the needle. Just keep working patiently... try not to use brute force methods, especially if the bobbin case is still in position (you may need a new sewing hook ($$) instead of just a needle (about $0.50) )
You have a "birds nest" of thread in the bobbin case. work the flywheel back and fourth until you get the needle to raise. Then you will need to cut bobbin thread under fabric before you can remove fabric.
No info on the sewing machine make or model. It sounds like something is binding up, is bent, or is tangled in the machine. Look around the front and back of the sewing area for a switch to lower the feed dogs.
Firstly, do you pull the fabric as it goes through the machine; this is a surefire way to break needles. Tension imbalance shouldn't be breaking a needle; more likely the thread would break if the top tension is too tight. And botton tension shouldn't need adjusting at all.
It may be that your needle is striking the presser foot if you are applying some "pull" to the fabric at the back of the foot.
But sewing very heavy fabrics is a challenge for many domestic machines - upholstery, heavy denim and canvas is tough going for many machines. Some tough mechanical machines will manage it but many won't. You can try using a roller or walking (even feed) foot as this may help with moving the fabric through but often the feed dogs just can't grip and move the heavy fabric enough. If you need to sew heavy fabrics regularly maybe consider finding a 2nd hand industrial straight stitch machine such as the Singer 20U.
In the case of your Bernettte, remove the needle plate (two screws), pressure foot, stub of needle and bobbin and then search the bobbin rotary hook area and see if there is a piece of needle stuck anywhere, you may need to turn the machine upside down and see if it falls out of the race area. I think this machine has a plastic horizontal bobbin case ??? If so, you will probably find that this has dislodged and may have been struck by the needle so remove it and give it a good visual check for damage, if there is a pierce mark, then give this a file down with an emery board to smoooth it. While it is out, see if the flywheel will now rotate the rotary hook fully.
Then reassemble by putting the bobbin case back in lining up the mark on the case with the stopper in the rotary hook, replacing the needle plate, pressure foot and a new needle.
If you can't get it to unlock at all, then it will need to go to a technician for repair.
Annoying solution, but works every time. Remove the ENTIRE bobbin casing from the base and then turn the wheel. The needle should lift right out. Reassemble bobbin casing and oil very well.
This generally only happens when you are sewing through several layers of fabric or though a thick fabric. If you are doing neither, the timing in your machine may be off and you will need to get it repaired.
I am not sure what is happening. But this is what I woudl try:
Open the needle plate, remove the bobbin and bobbin case and clean away any lint or thread that may have accumulated there.
Re-thread - always with the presser foot up.
Re-place the needle with a new one.
If this is a vertical bobbin (inserts at the side or front of the machine and not a drop-in) make sure the lever on the bobbin case is held open when you insert the bobbin & bobbin case into the shuttle.
When you need to adjust the fabric (rounding a curve or turning a corner), make sure the needle is down through the fabric before lifting the presser foot. If you do not, there will be a mis-stitch and sometimes the thread will tangle in the area of the bobbin.
DO NOT LUBRICATE THE MOTOR!! The machine needs to split, ie the outer casing needs to be removed, inspected, and CAREFULLY lubricated. It also might be that as you have been sewing heavy fabric you could have knocked the timing out.