Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Rockville, MD
Hammock: eno DN(Daily)/Pro(BU,Gear), Snipe
Tarp: Cuben DIYw/beak
Question for the DIY'ers
What sewing machine do ya use? I have a hand me down with no name on it. I can’t figure out where to buy thread. I tried the G Street Fabrics in my area but they ONLY sell Barina machines and supplies! They offered no help whatsoever... Do I buy bobbins with thread on them already or do I have to thread them myself?
I looked online to buy a new/used machine and they are expensive!
Always have a Plan B C D and E! - Arson
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Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Fredericksburg, Ohio
Hammock: Dream Hammock
Suspension: Varies each trip
Maybe post a photo of your machine and folks here can certainly give better answers.
Thread - Most any 100% Polyester thread commonly sold at the discount stores should work. Many stores carry Coats & Clark. It should work fine to help you become familier with your machine.
Bobbins - I would take a bobbin to the store with you and compare it to what they offer. Buy a few empty bobbins and fill them yourself.
If we can determine the make and model of your machine, it might be possible to find an owners manual for threading and adjustments.
A picture would help. But thread is available where ever and Bernina thread would work fine in any machine. Guttermanns is a favored brand but any good quality 100% polyester household sewing thread would be fine.
Bobbins are a whole different issue. I assume you have at least one bobbin for the machine now. You may have to continue to refill that one bobbin everytime you want to change thread. Bobbins are proprietary and differ from one model to another even within the same manufacturer. Many older knockoff (no name) machines were made to use Singer bobbins as Singer was an established brand since the early days of machines. BUT there is no assurance. The wrong bobbin is worthless in the best scenario... damaging to the machine in the worst.
Winding a bobbin is one of the staple skills of sewing. If you have the manual to the machine it should give you directions for doing it. If not... find a grandma to borrow for a short time and have her give you a hand.
If all else fails I would take the machine in to a sewing repair shop and see if they can match bobbins to the machine. They can also give you directions and guidance in threading it properly.
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
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Los Angeles, California
Hammock: MYOG Gathered End Hammock
Tarp: WL Tadpole!!
Insulation: Tewa UQ, Sleep Bag
Suspension: MYOG Whoopie Sling
I have a basic Singer machine from Walmart that isn't the greatest in the world but for $80 it does quite well. The two brands that I have heard my family of seamstresses go gaga over are Singer and Brother with a heavier love of the Brother machines. I don't know what you consider expensive but Walmart and JoAnn's both have some very nice basic machines in either brand in the $80-$200 range.
Papa Smurf and Ramblinrev are both right about the bobbins, I always take one bobbin with me as well as the name and model of my machine to the store when I buy new ones. If you don't have that info, I too would take it to a repair shop.
+1 on Gutterman's thread. It is my favorite and the only brand I use for my backpacking gear.