The joys of a new sewing machine

June 30, 2010 § 7 Comments

Looking for the Hawthorne Threads Give Away? It’s here.

The trials of a novice machinist

Monday I was doing some sewing on my new machine. Something I haven’t done for about 2 weeks. I began to sew some 2.5″ squares for a rotary cutting and sewing accuracy test. The test went well but the stitches were less than perfect. Let’s be frank, they were awful! I couldn’t work out what I was doing wrong. I mean, I knew the problem lay with me and not the machine because it was fine two weeks ago.

So I got out the manual and diagnosed the problem as being too much tension on the needle thread so I loosened it.  No joy! So I loosened it some more. Still no joy! Time to call the dealer to find out what I was doing wrong.

Too much needle tension

Too much needle tension

Sewrite to the rescue

So I called Sewrite and once again they were very helpful, telling me to try changing the needle, and to unscrew the plate and clean out the feed dogs, bobbin and trace and try again. Still no joy! Oh well nothing for it but the 76km round trip to Seven Hills to see what I was doing wrong. So on Tuesday off I went to Seven Hills with my Janome 3160 QDC all packed up nicely. I walked in, set it up and Rose came to have a look. She opened the bobbin case and said “There’s no tension on the bobbin thread because your bobbin’s in upside down!”.  She turned it round and all was once again sweetness and light. Aaaah! Fixed in 30 seconds! Sigh. And really the manual was right as there was NO tension on the bobbin thread of course the needle thread tension was too tight! The joys of a new machine and a novice machinist!  At least now my machine is all ready for my next machine quilting lesson – free motion. Very scary from my point of view but I’ll let you know how it goes.

The right thread

While I have been basting my latest project I’ve been wondering where I could get some YLI silk thread to use for the appliqué. Anyway not only did I learn something from my trip to Sewrite but while I was there I spied just the right shade of YLI silk thread that I needed. So that was a plus! Now, back to some more hand sewing…

YLI silk thread

YLI silk thread

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§ 7 Responses to The joys of a new sewing machine

  • Rachel Koopmans says:

    Hi there, new subscriber here 🙂

    Ok, so is there a grade BELOW novice? Because I am 40 and have used a machine about a dozen times in my life 😉 Sooo….(don’t laugh) which way is the right way for a bobbin to go? Should the thread be facing the right or the left when you put it into the case? I know, I know, but I’m self-teaching right now and I’ll take all the help I can get, LOL!

    • sewjournal says:

      Hi Rachel, Well I guess which way the thread goes may depend on which machine you have. My Janome 3160QDC needs to go such that when you pull the thread the bobbin moves in an anti-clockwise motion. Make sense?
      Hope so. Please ask again if that’s as clear as mud. 🙂

  • starjumper says:

    Your story is so very familiar to me right now. I bought a new machine about 2 months ago, a Pfaff creative 2134 which I named Pfelicia Pfaff. Sunday Pfelcia started breaking needles and I got scared… did I break my machine already? I started pulling everything apart and the needle was coming down directly on the thread hook… I googled it and then drove an hour to take it in to be looked at. Luckily, because it was so new, they put a rush on it and adjusted all of the timing, and Pfelicia came back home last night!

    As far as bobbin direction goes, I’ve found that it’s always different depending on the machine and you have to have to have to read the manual for your machine. That’s usually the first thing I check when things are going badly!

  • Rachel Koopmans says:

    Thanks 🙂 I inherited this rather ancient Janome from my grandmother with no accompanying manual…did some sewing with it yesterday (amazing! I completed a whole baby tag blanket! I FINISHED something! LOL) and it seems to be running ok, although some of my zigzags had a square top! I suspect this relationship is going to be one of trial and error 😉

  • Dot says:

    Rachel, you could try googling the model number. There are lots of manuals online, Dot

  • Rachel Koopmans says:

    Thanks Dot, great idea!

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