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Thread: Sewing Tips

  1. #21
    PuckerFactor's Avatar
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    Not to contradict you, rev, but isn't the flat face always towards the bobbin, so the scarf in the needle catches the bobbin hook?
    Hope you get this sorted out, ljcsov.

    PF
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  2. #22
    Senior Member Pipsissewa's Avatar
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    Here's an article with good illustrations of the anatomy of a sewing machine needle:

    http://www.threadsmagazine.com/item/...eedle-know-how

    Good luck!

    P.S. Thanks, PuckerFactor, for spurring me to google "needle scarf"!!!
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  3. #23
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PuckerFactor View Post
    Not to contradict you, rev, but isn't the flat face always towards the bobbin, so the scarf in the needle catches the bobbin hook?
    Hope you get this sorted out, ljcsov.

    PF
    It's the "always" that bothers me. Best to check the manual.
    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

  4. #24
    Senior Member ljcsov's Avatar
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    That was it. I had the flat part of the needle facing away from the arm of the machine. The manual said to go the other way. Back in business. Jacked up the tension a bit and the stitches are nice and tight in the silnylon. The hardest part is getting a line started.

    My tarp isn't perfect. The tie outs were sewn on in "get as many stitches as you can in that thing" possible fashion. However, they seem to be pretty sturdy. The hem is just a single fold, but it works for now. From a distance its not like you can tell anyway.

    The 9x5 asym worked out really well. Its a perfect size and I even made a nice stuffy sack which packs it down to about the size of my hammock. Each tie out has a loop of bungie cord around it to create tension and allow for some give in winds. Hopefully this will prevent rips. I am using Mountain Outfitters titanium stakes which I hit with a bit of gold spray paint so they pop against the ground. Easy retrieval.

    Also, for my ridgeline I have glowire from Mountain Outfitters. Nice stuff. I prussik'd on two mini s-biners to attach the tarp and have another one with one of those itty bitty figure 9s. The 4 pack on them was a good deal. I use them at my stake outs too since they make things easy and are lighter than the figure 9 biners.

    Looks like I have that part of the set up done for now. In the future I'd like to make a bigger tarp that I could use in an A-frame set up with a set ridgeline. Figured the smaller tarp was a good start since it didnt involve much sewing and for $15 bucks on sil 2nds off diygearsupply.com I could afford the mistakes.

    Thanks guys!!

    PS- for my next project I'd like to make either that tarp (shouldn't be too tough), a bug net, or a large (big enough for two) quilt. Any suggestions on where to look for stuff on the quilt? I am not sure of the "outer material". I read up on the down thing and how to calculate how much you need. The cheapest I've found it its $30 for 3oz. Maybe someone knows of a better. The channel set up with the no see um looks like it might be tough. I'll have to think on that.

  5. #25
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    sound like me now...

    You are sounding like me now with my projects lined up. First some bags, then quick hammocke, then a tarp, now bugnet, changed the suspension system, ridgelines and now looking at a tQ... does it ever end...

  6. #26
    Senior Member Timberrr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramblinrev View Post
    All needles look the same but they can be drastically different. I like Schmetz which are widely available. Their quality control is quite good. Now to the issue at hand.

    Try the universal first step in troubleshooting an unknown problem. Take it all apart and put it back together. By that I mean take all the thread out of the machine. Strip the bobbin and rewind it with new thread. Take the top thread out completely. Spool off the machine. Remove the needle and set it to the side. Brush everything out as clean as you can. Use a very soft small brush. It is best not to use canned air as it can blow lint and stuff into the innards of the machine although I know how tempting that can be.

    Then put it all back together making sure to follow the directions carefully. Check the way the bobbin is inserted and make sure it is correct. Put the needle back in the machine making sure the flat side is where it should be. Make sure it is tightened secure but don't strong arm it. You don't want it to shift position or slip in the clamp.

    Rethread the top thread making sure to follow the directions carefully and every little bend and spring is properly engaged. Pay special attention to how the needle itself is threaded. Get that wrong and the whole system won't work. If the needle threads front to back it kind of hard to get that wrong unless you put the needle in backwards. But a side threading needle you have to thread from the proper side. That all depends on how the needle is oriented. Not the needle its self but how it is mounted on the machine. After all that has been done and rechecked try it again on some scrap and see what gives.

    Hopefully it will work properly. If not... then something is wrong with the mechanics of the machine itself. That would be very difficult to diagnose on line. You would be best to take it to a mechanic for servicing. Something is out of alignment or broken. As I say, it would be tough to deal with that on line.
    Yeah. What he said...

    And while you have the manual out, read the part where it talks about oiling the machine. It literally takes two minutes. You know how much better your car feels after an oil change and a new tank of gas - your thread injector will just run better too. And like your car's oil change, your machine's lube job is probably overdue anyway.

    P.S. you know we're waitin' for pictures...
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    Our roof, the tree-top overhead,
    For we are wild and hunted men.

  7. #27
    Senior Member ljcsov's Avatar
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    Here it is:

    This is it in its stuff sack which I made out of remnant material. Packs to about the size of the ENO double nest in its respective sack.



    The tarp in porch mode.



    Sorry the pics are blurry. Just quick shot them on the blackberry. They are in my gallery if you want to see them!
    I set it up with my hammock before. Its a snug fit, but its what I was looking for. I will be able to fit my pack under there and have good coverage when I'm low to the ground and need to bring down the sides on a steep grade.

  8. #28
    Senior Member traftonm's Avatar
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    Invest in a walking foot. Makes sewing sil alot easer
    'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

  9. #29
    MAD777's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by traftonm View Post
    Invest in a walking foot. Makes sewing sil alot easer
    I've heard this from several different people. However, I bought a walking foot at Joanns and it turned out to be nothing but frustration for me. Probably more of a problem with me than with the foot, but it went right back to Joanns.

    Maybe it's a matter of the right tool in the right hands
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  10. #30
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Generic walking feet are like generic processed meat products. Sometimes they will get the job done and sometimes they are the screaming mimis. Not all machines have a OEM walking foot available. If you buy generic you pays your money and takes your chances.

    Personally I think for the occasional home user DIY person they are overrated compared to the expense. For commercial use they are almost essential but the occasional user is investing a lot of money if they don't use it a lot. They can be cranky to adjust especially if you change your stitch length or make drastic changes in fabric. They make most sense for higher volume in termso of cost effectiveness.

    Remember, once the first line of stitching is in the fabric is stable and a walking foot is needed a whole lot less. Nothing wrong with them if you like your otys and can get one made for the machine you have. But below a certain level of production _I_ think they lose their cost effectiveness.
    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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