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Thread: Sewing Tips

  1. #11
    Senior Member bdbart's Avatar
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    like Rev said....pins...with good head balls on them.....also the thinner the better
    My memory's not as sharp as it used to be. Also, my memory's not as sharp as it used to be.

  2. #12
    MAD777's Avatar
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    Practice on scraps, then, practice on scraps, after that, practice on scraps....

    You get the point. Yes indeed, this silnylon stuff would probably throw an experienced dressmaker off their cadence. You need that practice to get your cadence. In other words, to get the quirks worked out and learn the feel of the fabric.


    The other thing is, forget any vision of inserting the fabric in the machine and then running it through to the other end, non-stop. It don't work that way
    Get all set, check everything again, and then sew a tiny little segment. Just keep this up and you will reach the other end, sooner or later, actually later. BUT, that method is ultimately faster than spending half your time with a seam ripper (trust me, I know this).
    Mike
    "Life is a Project!"

  3. #13
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MAD777 View Post
    The other thing is, forget any vision of inserting the fabric in the machine and then running it through to the other end, non-stop. It don't work that way
    I beg to differ... it works that way all the time _IF_ the lengths are in the 4-6 inch range.
    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. #14
    Senior Member JohnSawyer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timberrr View Post
    It's been mentioned a few times and I feel compelled to address the masculinity issue.
    During the Great Depression when people did anything possible to survive, my grandfather sewed every bit of clothes for my mother, my two uncles and my grandmother. He did what he had to do to take care of his family. In my opinion - That's a real man!
    My mother learned from him, I learned from her (my wife helps me), and now my daughter is learning. And she's better at it than I am! I love the family dynamic it creates.
    I know you meant nothing offensive - and I don't think anyone, including me, was offended. I'm just saying that it's okay for guys to sew just like its okay for girls to shoot. (BTW - my wife was sharpshooter rated in the Army - just sayin')
    This is a good thread on sewing (sewing thread... get it? ) and I'm enjoying the tips and ideas.

    Yes, we like the masculine jokes... I sew, my wife knows I have a sewing machine... Like your grandfather, my father could sew... told us stories of being in the navy: He saved his money and when he got to Japan, he bought his mother a sewing machine (she used a foot-powered model). They nearly wore it out aboard ship, charging his shipmates to sew up their dress clothing... hems, taking in pants, patches, emblems, etc... Said he made enough money to buy a better one for his mom when they got back to the states... He was the most manly man I ever knew...

    Enjoy the gear-making... fear-not the sil, oh padawan.
    "Do or do not, there is no try." -- Yoda


  5. #15
    Senior Member ljcsov's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the advice guys!

    I did make my tarp. It isn't perfect, but the hem on the edge is holding and the tie out tabs seem to be staying in place. I made the mistake of using polyester webbing for my tie outs, which was a huge pain where the needle kept getting stuck. Regardless, I got the job done.

    I am trying to work on making a sil sack of some sort to stick tarp in. For some reason my machine has been messed up and isn't stitching correctly. The needle goes in, but no stiches are being made. I am going to try to get this thing working so hopefully I can get back on this!

    EDIT:
    PROBLEM

    For some reason my sewing machine is not pulling the bottom thread through. I can get the bobbin thread to come through the hole below the foot but it wont go through any material. Not quite sure what to do....
    Last edited by ljcsov; 08-12-2011 at 21:48.

  6. #16
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ljcsov View Post
    For some reason my sewing machine is not pulling the bottom thread through. I can get the bobbin thread to come through the hole below the foot but it wont go through any material. Not quite sure what to do....
    Ok... I need more information on this one. What exactly happens to the bottom thread? Does it stay linked to the top thread but just runs along the bottom like a line? Does it not form a link at all so the top thread just falls away? What is is doing?

    If it is the first, then you top tension is too loose. Tighten it up a bit and see if that help. If it is the second then the stitches are not being formed at all. Replace you needle with a brand new one. It could be bent, broken or just plain worn out. If that doesn't work you will probably need to have the timing checked.
    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

  7. #17
    Senior Member ljcsov's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramblinrev View Post
    Ok... I need more information on this one. What exactly happens to the bottom thread? Does it stay linked to the top thread but just runs along the bottom like a line? Does it not form a link at all so the top thread just falls away? What is is doing?

    If it is the first, then you top tension is too loose. Tighten it up a bit and see if that help. If it is the second then the stitches are not being formed at all. Replace you needle with a brand new one. It could be bent, broken or just plain worn out. If that doesn't work you will probably need to have the timing checked.
    It is the second. I just replaced the old needle which snapped while sewing some polyester webbing. In its place, I put in a "universal" needle that I got from Walmart. All the needles looked the same to me so I just picked up this one. It worked well for a while. Now its not forming stitches, just putting lots of holes in things. Super frustrating.

  8. #18
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    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.
    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

  9. #19
    Senior Member ljcsov'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.
    I don't think I paid much attention to the flat end of the needle. I am going to see if i put it in wrong. I'll double check everything else. How should the flat side be oriented?

  10. #20
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ljcsov View Post
    How should the flat side be oriented?
    Depends on the machine. 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

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