Question about Kenmore Sewing Machines

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I have a Kenmore sewing machine model 385.19153. When attempting to quilt through 3 layers (top, batting, bottom) the needle thread is looping on the bottom. It appears the needle thread is too loose although I have the tension set on 9. I also have the pressure adjusting lever set on 0 as that seems to work best. I have cleaned the bobbin holder, hook race, feed dogs, etc. and I have changed the needle and am using 80/12 Schmetz microtex sharp needle. I've also oiled the machine. Nothing I've done has made much difference. Any suggestions?

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  • hays_dl Mar 19, 2011

    Currently my feed dogs are down as I am using a spring loaded quilting/embroidery attachment. I am trying to quilt using a freehand meandering stitch as shown to me by my class instructor. So, do you think my machine is suitable for this type of work? Or must the feed dogs be up? My instructor has told me to keep the feed dogs down.

  • hays_dl Mar 20, 2011

    I have done as you have suggested and it seems to be working. I looked all through the owner's manual and could not find any information about how to adjust the bobbin tension.
    I felt all along that this was the problem, but I don't believe this solution is recommended too often. Thanks.

  • hays_dl Mar 20, 2011

    The second solution was helpful and seems to have solved the problem. Thanks for your persistence!

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Check that the thread is tight around the bobbin. Make sure that the bobbin is in the right way around - the bobbin thread should double back on itself coming out of the bobbin holder. The bobbin tension adjustment is the small screw in the plate on the bobbin case that the thread passes under as it comes off the bobbin and goes out.

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Posted on Mar 20, 2011

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Hi, looping on the bottom thread is generally caused by the machine being incorrectly threaded on top, which therefore wont let the bottom thread go into the stitch properly and causing it to loop.
We were told to basically follow these suggestions in order to reduce chances of this recurring & to date, I still refer back to it when I forget myself, especially if I have been off my machine for a few weeks.
1) Machine should be clean and free of lint within machine and in and around bobbin casing.
2) Correct and sharp needles correctly inserted.
3) Threads will generally feed better from the vertical position so a vertical thread stand/ attachment is recommended.
4) Before beginning to thread the machine, check that the pressure foot is in the up position, the feed dogs are engaged, the thread take up lever is in the uppermost position.
5) As you begin to thread ensure that the thread is fully engaged into the tension disks.
6)Once machine is threaded and both threads are visible (i.e the lower thread has been brought up from the bottom), slowly sew a few test stitches on a scrap piece of the fabric you intend to sew, to ensure your tension is correct. This saves time as you havent sewn a length of fabric only to find all of the bottom thread looped (experienced in that one!!)
7) If all this fails, it could be a timing issue of when your needle thread is contacting with the bobbin thread, which only a service person can fix for you, sorry.

Hope this helps you.

Posted on Mar 19, 2011

  • Tunde Autos
    Tunde Autos Mar 20, 2011

    Am not sure your machine is suitable for the work.....

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1 Answer

My machine is adding loops under my stitches when I try to stitch a straight stitch, I am trying to machine stitch a quilt top!


Quilting is a bit more finicky than regular sewing. Be sure to ALWAYS RAISE the presser foot when threading the top thread. FWIW, I use a separate bobbin case for FMQ that I have tightened the tension to keep the bobbin thread from coming to the top of the sandwich, but I tend to use a finer thread for quilting so adjusting the bobbin takes care of it. In your case, however, it sounds like the top thread is staying under the fabric. I would try tightening the top tension. Also, install a brand new needle--a top stitch, embroidery, or microtex needle seem to work well for me. Test well on a sandwich made of the same fabric and batting and get it adjusted well before sewing on your quilt. Sometimes sewing speed will affect stitches under the fabric, or even on top.

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Why wont my Bernina Virtuosa quilt three layers of fabric including a polyester batting?


Depends what exactly is happening with your machine, not stitching? fabric not moving? pulling up polyester??? puckering?? tension issues?? Verify it is threaded correctly. It could be an incompatibility of the needle/thread/fabric sandwich. Be sure to use a brand new sharp needle. You may need a walking foot. If it is not a good quality of polyester batting, it could cause issues. Poor quality thread. Tension not adjusted. Etc...

You can probably narrow down the problem by trying different batting, different fabric, different needles, and different thread on scrap fabric sandwiches.

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Might try changing the needle. Try a top stitching needle. Sometimes needles bend slightly piercing 2 or 3 layers of fabric plus batting, so using a larger, sharp needle penetrates better.

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1 Answer

Husqvarna sapphire 870 quilt


Could be several things.

First, install a brand new needle, perhaps a top-stitch needle will work better because it has a groove in the shaft that protects the thread. Make sure the needle is the appropriate size for the thread you are using--a needle eye that is too small will cause the thread to hang or shred. When the needle penetrates the sandwich, the top thread forms a loop. If the eye is too small, the thread will not come back up through the sandwich, leaving a loop under the fabric.

Remove the top thread from the machine.
ALWAYS RAISE the presser foot and rethread from the beginning.
Set the top tension to the midway point and retest your machine on a quilt sandwich made of the same fabric layers as your project.. Tension problems are more evident when sewing multiple layers of fabric, so tweak the tension until the top and bobbin threads meet in the middle of the sandwich.

I don't believe you will have to adjust the bobbin tension, but in case you do, be very careful. Mark the tension screw setting FIRST so you can reverse any changes you make. Bobbin adjustments are made in very SMALL increments. Because I tend to use a lighter weight thread for my quilting, I have a specific bobbin case that is adjusted for my quilt thread and I keep my other bobbin for regular sewing. Then I don't have to keep adjusting the bobbin tension when going from sewing a quilt to something else.

Some machines do better with certain brands of threads than others.

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1 Answer

Stitch too tight on top, too loose on bottom


This is a problem with thread tension. The needle thread is too tight and the bobbin thread is too loose. I don't have one of these machines, but there should be either screws or knobs to adjust. Look at your manual. Here's a page I found on bobbin tension.
https://www.manualslib.com/manual/1022927/Toyota-Quilt-50.html?page=50

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Iam quilting and the tension settings must be off. I have the feeds dropped and the thread from the bobbin loops on the top fabric.


You need to slow your speed and use a larger size needle - 14/90 or 100/16.

The groove on the shaft of the smaller size needle cannot properly guide the thread through the thick layers.

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1 Answer

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Try a different needle. Use a quilting or topstitch or even a metallic needle - one that has a larger scarf than normal. The scarf is the groove at the back of the needle where the thread goes while the stitch is being formed. Quilting threads often need more "room" there. I have been told that the Inspira quilting needles are good because they have a thread groove on the front and the back of the needle. Not tried them personally but might be worthwhile for you to consider.

For the looping, you could fiddle with your tensions a little either loosening the bobbin tension or tightening the top, or both. Only ever do this in very small increments. But the good news is that even the "professional" quilters do not have perfect quilt backs - just have a look at them at quilt shows!
Pam M.

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hi! there wind thread on bobbins winder 4 times by your hand rotate clockwise,insert in shaft bobiins winder on top of your machine near hand wheel push latch to engage loop thread on disc winder tension start your machine on pedal foot automatically winder disengage if already filled up of thead pull this winder and insert to bobbins casing insert thread to slot and pull out winder 6411c87.jpgshould rotate clockwise as shown.insert on shuttle hook casing and close cover needle plate.next thread your upper

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2 Answers

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Sounds like the feed is your problem. Most likely you need a different foot. Check the bottom of the foot - it should be quite smooth to allow the dog feed to move the denser layers along smoothly. Hope this helps.

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