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  1. #1

    Mesh Sewing Machine Jamming Up

    I am trying to sew snake skins out of a light weight mesh material. It is not no-see-um but something similar that I found at wally world (very slippery). I am using standard all purpose thread. The fabric feed under the pressure foot keeps bunching up the fabric and sucking it down into the bobbin compartment as soon as I start to sew. What gives? Do I need to use a different sized needle or something?

  2. #2
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    One reaon this can happen is you start too close to the edge of the fabric. When you place your fabric under the presser foot line the edge up with the back of the presser foot. Then go forward a few stitches, reverse close to the edge and go forward again. Make sure you have a good needle. A needle with a spur on the end will play hob with fabric, especially nets. If you have hit a pin or bent the needle and hit the throat plate replace the needle. I is likely damages and blunted.
    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."
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    If you have trouble after what rev suggested trying you could also make a tab of sorts on the end out of blue painters tape to help get started. Sometimes it just helps to have something sticking out behind the presser foot getting the full foot holding your work in place. In our shop we have wallets made out of carbon fiber with a slot for the needle to go through and tracks for the presser foot that we slip over the ends of very flimsy mesh and it keeps the ends from puckering down into the hook.

    Cautionary stuff though, painters tape has little residue, but it can make a mess out of your needle and it will dull it up right quick if you use it too much.
    --If a cow laughs hard, does milk come out its nose?

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    SnrMoment's Avatar
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    I had better luck putting the foot dogs in the down position and moving the netting myself.
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    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SnrMoment View Post
    I had better luck putting the foot dogs in the down position and moving the netting myself.
    The danger with that approach is that you will bend the needle and hit important parts that are not supposed to be hit. There are occasions where the feed dogs can be lowered without undue dangers but they are rare and not generally useful for gear making.
    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

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    Bobbin Tension - A Personal Viewpoint

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    sr1355's Avatar
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    What he said... Make sure fabric is past back of presser foot, hold both bobbin & needle thread tails, do a few stitches then reverse to edge of fabrics, you can then use thread tails to apply slight, and I mean slight tension to fabrics once those first few stitches are in helping move it along under the presser foot...
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    Question for those that know...does a ball pointed needle work better for netting or should one stay with the sharps?

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    Quote Originally Posted by gmcttr View Post
    Question for those that know...does a ball pointed needle work better for netting or should one stay with the sharps?
    Most mesh has big enough threads that with ball point or sharp you're going to cut threads if you hit them. Ball points work on knits because the threads are small and loosely knit and can move, mesh - not so much.

    All in all - no, it doesn't matter, but doesn't hurt if you want to switch out your needles I guess.
    --If a cow laughs hard, does milk come out its nose?

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    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pag View Post
    Most mesh has big enough threads that with ball point or sharp you're going to cut threads if you hit them. Ball points work on knits because the threads are small and loosely knit and can move, mesh - not so much.

    All in all - no, it doesn't matter, but doesn't hurt if you want to switch out your needles I guess.
    I agree with pag in that it probably does not matter a whole lot. My only thought would be if you stay with the sharps for gear making you won't run the risk of having the wrong needle in the machine when it might matter. For very light woven fabrics like we use for gear a ball point needle can cause the fabric to push into the throat plate causing no end of grief.
    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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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramblinrev View Post
    The danger with that approach is that you will bend the needle and hit important parts that are not supposed to be hit. There are occasions where the feed dogs can be lowered without undue dangers but they are rare and not generally useful for gear making.
    That may help explain the sudden death of my $4.00 Singer.
    Thanks for the info. My "new" 1957 Emdeco seems to do OK with the dogs up & working.
    Love is blind. Marriage is an eye opener.

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