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  1. #1
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    I'm in DEEP Trouble... It's the Thread Injector

    I could just say that I had caught the DIY bug and I think everyone reading this would nod in agreement, but it gets worse.

    So there I was working on my wife's thread injector when... dum dum duuummm......

    Yep, that's right, I hit the breaks because something wasn't right. Hmmm... Dag-on-it, I bent a needle.

    And this was only the beginning. I'm a newbie, but highly mechanically inclined. I replaced the needle and still had an issue, so I researched timing. I worked to set and reset the timing, but something was seriously off. So I removed the outer plastic covering. After several hours I discovered that I had chipped a 1/2" chunk out of the plastic cam gear (I think this is what it's called).

    So I already had a couple of calls in to folks I trust looking for a thread injector for myself, now I guess I'll be looking for 2. I just have to convince my wife that she doesn't need something super shiny and new. She'll understand right?

  2. #2
    Senior Member webhanger's Avatar
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    I feel your pain. Things like that have us owning 4.
    Mind over matter,
    if you don't mind, it don't matter

  3. #3
    boulderv7's Avatar
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    Lol. This is why most people here seek out older, all metal machines. Good luck with your search. I've had good luck on Craig's list. Oh...and my wife stays away from my machines!! Lol.
    My head is an animal

  4. #4
    Senior Member Boston's Avatar
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    Why not just replace the gear? They're not that expensive, and if you are indeed mechanically inclined I'm sure you could do the job yourself.

    FWIW I've heard a lot of good things about newer replacement gear's. The problem is the older nylons would break down and become brittle from exposure to the machine oils used. Newer gear's seem to have better chemical resistance than the the older ones.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Depending on what kind of sewing your wife does asking her to use an old gear making machine may be asking for trouble. For making gear all you need is a straight stitch machine that works reliably. For more advanced sewing that won't cut the mustard. My advice for the gear maker is get a good quality vintage machine that is well maintained and keep it that way. For the accomplished stitcher, get the best newer machine you can possibly afford fro a well respected reputable dealer. Sewing has evoled a lot since the days of the old straight stitch machines. Technical fabrics, stretch materials and knits are far more available and need the more modern stitches. But for gear making.... the older machines are the best bet when you consider bang for the buck.

    Boston is correct. The new synthetic gears on the high end machines are excellent. The cheapo disposables you get from the Big Box Boys are a crap shot when it comes to that.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

    "Bless you child, when you set out to thread a needle don't hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that's the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t'other way."
    Mrs. Loftus to Huck Finn

    We Don't Sew... We Make Gear! video series

    Important thread injector guidelines especially for Newbies

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  6. #6
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    Thank you for the suggestions Boston and Ramblinrev.

    I took the thread injector apart with the intent of repairing or replacing the offending part on this Kenmore machine.15202.jpg

    This is what I found. IMG_20150720_173749_220.jpg IMG_20150720_173650_976.jpg

    So I started searching for parts and after I couldn't seem to find the exact model referenced or the part from a close model after a couple hours, I gave in. It isn't a major loss. It was a cheap gift from a friend and it's about 10 years old and been well abused, I mean loved.

    Again, I appreciate the suggestions and I'll be sure to ask questions. I've already been reading several of Ramblinrev's posts and that was partly why I had decided to write this one off as dead, considered it to be like a newer "Monkey" Ward version.

    I am not an expert and don't mind being disagreed with if it will help me avoid some growing pains.

  7. #7
    Stubby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramblinrev View Post
    Sewing has evoled a lot since the days of the old straight stitch machines. Technical fabrics, stretch materials and knits are far more available and need the more modern stitches. Older machines are the best bet when you consider bang for the buck.
    There you go, buddy. Just tell the wife her machine was of the cheapo China made (POS) machine that died, and you're gonna get her a higher quality one. Blame yourself for buying the cheap machine, apologize, and then present her with the shiny, bomb-diggity machine you want. It's her's, of course.

    I have no idea why I'm single. I'm good at this relationship stuff.
    Maturity makes the mind grow older.

  8. #8
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    I like Stubby's idea from a "get the replacement view", however the cost of a new high quality machine is appreciable. Your wife might not need or want something with lots of bells and whistles.

    I have been very fortunate in finding thread injectors from the local Salvation Army shop. I find the machines come in groups (not sure why), I check the prospective Thread Injector out carefully before purchase. I sew something, check out how all the knobs work, what the underside of the machine looks like, unplug the machine, take out the bobbin and the other easy to remove parts and feel them for rough spots. I check the threading, run the machine and see if there are any odd odors. Last week I picked up a very old Elna, very nice very old, all parts accounted for. I paid $20.00 USD.

    I buy the older machines because they handle what I work on better than the new, spendy machines. The last brand new machine I purchased was over $2500, it needed tuneups, like my car, I had to be very careful with it, heaven forbid I accidently run over a pin, trip into the thread injector tech for sure.

    Nope, now I buy well aged, very heavy thread injectors, that I am able to maintain on my own. if they ever die, I will use them for an anchor.

    I have looked in the GoodWill Stores, they seem to be over priced, newer machines, mainly with major problems, beyond my ability to fix easily.

    At one time you could get parts for anything you bought from Sears (Kenmore). Way back when, before I had a major disagreement with Sears, I bought my replacement parts from their repair outlet. They promised parts for their merchandise forever. Maybe forever has come and gone, not sure.

    I would adjust the timing as a last resort and only if I was sure of the problem.

    My husband and I had an agreement, he was to keep his paws off my tools, I left his stuff, laying wherever he left it, that agreement saved lots of arguments. You need his and her's thread injectors.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IRONFISH45 View Post
    At one time you could get parts for anything you bought from Sears (Kenmore). Way back when, before I had a major disagreement with Sears, I bought my replacement parts from their repair outlet. They promised parts for their merchandise forever. Maybe forever has come and gone, not sure.


    You need his and her's thread injectors.
    ROFLOL IRONFISH You must be almost as old as I am if you remember those days. That has not been the case for several decades at least. That's one of the reasons I stopped doing business with Sears and now that they are owned by Kmart it is even more humorous.

    As far as his/hers machines, that is the only way it can function with two avid stitchers in the household. I don't think I would spend $2500 for a new machine unless I was doing embroidery as a business. But I did drop over a grand twenty years ago on my wife's Janome and have never had reason to regret it. But of course she is a professional quality stitcher who earned a good living sewing anything that came across her table. She once cut into a $95.00/yard piece of silk without so much as a prayer before she she did it. She needs a good machine. Me... I get the cast offs.

    Which brings me to another point. There are machines being made now which are super expensive and virtually meaningless for the sewing that 95% of all advanced stitchers need. If they market the machine as an "embroidery" machine I personally would stay away from it. IMO that's like buying a Lambourgini for a city commute run. Yeah it is a super machine but unless you are doing embroidery for a business you will never use it to it's full potential. IMO high quality embroidery is best left to the specialty shops where the investment in the hardware makes sense. For the average advanced stitcher I would think a high quality machine can be had for $500 - $750 from a good reputable shop. If you are a professional stitcher plan on more... but a good high quality brand from a good high quality shop can be had around those prices without getting a whole lot of useless frills no one will ever use. It does not cost the manufacturers any more to program in 3002 useless stitches but it makes _great_ sales copy. And they can jack up the prices for those folks who think they have to have the "bestest" new toys.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

    "Bless you child, when you set out to thread a needle don't hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that's the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t'other way."
    Mrs. Loftus to Huck Finn

    We Don't Sew... We Make Gear! video series

    Important thread injector guidelines especially for Newbies

    Bobbin Tension - A Personal Viewpoint

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