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Found 26 results

  1. tension problems

    I was having issues with long, skipped stitches. Angie at APQS walked us through several possible issues. In the end we reset the timing and the long stitch issue is cured. However, now I am having issues getting my tension set back up properly. The bottom was being pulled to tight and then leaving dots underneath. I can get the machine to quilt nice stitches but I can only go from left to the right, no major going backwards in my meandering and a bit slower. With that said, I had to make the bobbin case fairly loose and the top tension is SO TIGHT that I can't believe the thread doesn't keep snapping. I have- 1. checked the thread path, 2. checked how the path pieces all line up, 3. cleaned out the bobbin case (which I'm pretty sure I sprung- I have a spare) 4. just put in a new hook/bobbin assembly when it got timed, 5. tried a new bobbin, 6. tried a different spool if thread, 7. oiled parts- top and underneath. I do have a stitch regulator. I use polyester thread and prewound bobbins. Anyone have any other suggestions? I waited for some new parts and some time was lost with resetting the timing. I could not be so far behind on projects for other people....Crying was my final option and I've done that now. Any hep would be appreciated. Thanks!
  2. How often do you replace needles? Is that why my fabric looks like it has holes punched in it. Or is that because it's a batik? Or too tight on the frame? Tension off in my thread? It looks ok. Maybe a bit tight on the bobbin. I have pics of top and bottom of quilting. I also tightened top tension before starting this row but I'm attaching a pic of the last row on the roller bar. I think the top was too loose righty?
  3. Well, it has been a week since we made the 18 hr drive to Des Moines and back home in one day. I knew the shine would come back on. ") Boy is it different! moving the machine versus moving fabric. It wasn't going so well last night. A lot of drag, thought of all of you guys and bravely turned the top tension (yes, I come from the generation when our mothers taught us to Never...Ever... mess with tension) and it helped some, still heavy to push/pull. Off the fabric he glides. Tired and went to bed. This morning thought I would give another try! Still dragging, loosened the brake, Bam, success! Learning curve, the brake was loose enough without sandwich/stitching, but with it must have been just enough to hold it up with my sandwich. Thanks to everyone out here who posts a problem and to those who answer. It gives us confidence to touch buttons and turn knobs ") Lenni is gliding!!
  4. Finished Quilt for Customer who called back and asked about railroad tension on back only in certain spots where pattern changed direction - I have been told this is called Needle Flex and Directional Tension issues. Question asked -- will it stay secure or will it come loose? I advised that putting in dryer sometimes helped pull the threads into the batting and stated it would not come loose. I offered to take quilt and "re-do" areas of tracking - what has others done in this situation? I really don't want to have to take out and re-do but want to assure customer that quilting is secure - is it?? Even if the thread "lays" on the back in a few places, do others offer to take out and re-quilt? This is not a show quilt and won't be judged by the quilt police! What is advise of group?
  5. I have a problem that I've had before in the past, and can't remember/find the solution. Big random loops on the back. My tension spring rest at 11on top,and goes down to 9 when the thread pulls through. My pigtail goes from 8 to 2. My top tension is tight to the point of the thread breaking. I have a thread sock on and have rethreaded to try and alleviate some of the twist. My top stitches bubble when this is happening on the bottom. I can't feel any rough spots or burrs anywhere.Dawn!!!!! Waaaah!!!!
  6. I just began quilting a top that has the Minkee type fleece on the back. Low loft poly batting. The fleece is a black and white zigzag and the top is light pink. When the needle passes over the black it pulls up some of the nap from the back so I have black lint on my pink top every inch or so! I changed to a larger needle, but that didn't solve the problem. Would loosening my top tension work? I hate to mess with tension too much, but I'm thinking I might have to for this project. Suggestions, anyone? I've never had this happen before!
  7. Let me begin by saying I am new to longarm quilting. I have had my Millie for 11 months and have been actually quilting on it for 6. I have not had a single problem until now. I follow all cleaning instructions, between quilts, as recommended by APQS, and have been using the same brand and weight of thread from superior (OMNI), and the same batting as all other quilts 80/20 Fairfield (frankly, I am afraid to change until I get better at understanding the machine and tension). Now for my problem, the other day I noticed my tension was "randomly" off. I was using quilt path, as on several of my previous projects, and in small random spots my tension would be off. The front of the quilt looked fine, but the back looked like railroad tracks. It was not just before or after a stop or start. The machine would be quilting along fine and for a very short time the tension would get off and just as quickly it would be back to normal. I did check to see if it was in a certain spot on the pattern, but it was in random spots. I could not find anything consistent about the times it chose to be off. I have no idea what to do and would appreciate any suggestions anyone might have. I always thought that if I had tension problems it would be throughout the entire quilt.
  8. the bobbin thread has been giving me trouble more often than not...i have the tension balanced per Amy's suggestions; bobbin loose so all adjusting is done on top and when it works, the tension is actually quite good. the only problem now, however, is that my bobbin thread keeps getting wrapped around the bobbin latch. other times, it gets caught between the bobbin case and the bobbin race. This happens with all sorts of thread; glide, sew fine, cotton/poly... we retimed the machine a few months ago, could i have left a tad too much space by the bobbin finger thing? thanks.. jackie
  9. Hey all, I have been experimenting with pre-wound bobbins and would love to get an informal survey of what you all do when using Superiors Super Bobs pre-wound bottom line bobbins . Do you take the cardboard off only on the side that is up against the inside of the bobbin? Do you take both cord board sides off both ends and then adjust bobbin tension after each modification?? or do you leave both card board sides on the pre-wound and still get pretty stitches? I actually called superior the other day and the advise I got was pretty useless.."it;s what ever you would like to do" . Well I feel like my tension is sub-optimal when using them in-spite of the fact that they are suppose to be a good product. I love to love these as the magna-glide classics are just so much more expensive. To add a little more twist in this survey , do you use the spring in the back of the bobbin casing or have you removed it and use a bobbin genie washer by Sharon Schamber?? Do you think they help?? I know this is several questions wrapped into one, but ultimately related. I know I can count on all you expert advice ! Thanks, Debbie
  10. Need advice

    Hello all. About two weeks ago my Millennium developed a thread breaking issue along with an occasional loop on the back side of the quilt. I've dealt with tension for twelve years now and I know how to fix most issues, but this has me stumped. I can't seem to get rid of that loop problem. Any tighter and it's constant breakage. Loosen it even a little and there are tons of bottom loops. I'm wondering if the tension assembly needs replacement, which I'm probably going to do either way. I go through a lot of quilts, roughly 600-700 per year, so my machine takes a beating. If anyone has some advanced fixes, please fill me in! I've emailed Amy,but no response and I need some guidance. Thank you!! J
  11. Hello. Newbie here. I have been practicing on my new to me non-stitch regulated Ultimate 2 for about a month and have a few questions for the experts here. My practice quilt sandwiches have been muslin/batting/muslin and I was finally getting pretty good stitch quality and decent stitch length - not perfectly consistent length, but not horrible either. Sooooooo, I decided to try some small charity quilts (Quilts for Kids). On the first two, it just seemed like I couldn't get into a rhythm, not sure if it was nerves or what (the finished quilts did look okay, though) - and I noticed that there were sections where the stitches looked fine and then all of a sudden there would be a section about an inch or so long where it looked like the thread was stretched tight. The stitches weren't any longer than the section before or after it, so I'm wondering - could it be a tension issue or is it a result of me moving the machine too fast or a little of both? The stitch quality on the third quilt seemed much better and more consistent. So is it just PPP? I used Glide thread on top and prewound bobbins on all 3 quilts. The batting was a little heavier on the third quilt and I believe the fabric was better quality as well. Does that make a difference? Also, for those of you that use non-stitch regulated machines, how fast do you set the speed control? The control on my machine goes from 0-10 and the last quilt I stitched on #6. Just curious what others do. I've noticed that if I speed up a little, my circles and curves are smoother than when I go slowly. Is this normal? How fast is too fast? My machine gets noticeably louder the faster it stitches - I'm assuming this is normal? I haven't had too much exposure around other longarms and I don't want to blow anything up! One more question (okay maybe two) - How can I tell if I need a new bobbin case? How do you know if the tension check spring or tension control assembly needs to be replaced? Other than cleaning the bobbin area and oiling the wicks, are there other maintenance steps that I should be doing/checking to keep everything in good shape? I am really enjoying getting to know my Ultimate 2. I had no idea how much there is to learn and have never adjusted thread tension so much in my life! LOL Thanks for all your help!!! I should note that I was using a pantograph for the above quilts, if that makes a difference.
  12. I've already called and left a message with APQS to call me back, but while I'm waiting, I'm getting impatient. I thought it wouldn't hurt to post this problem on the forum. Maybe someone out there has had the same problem. My Freedom was stitching just beautifully a couple of days ago, but now when I stitch from right to left, the stitches look like they're stretched tight so they look like a shiny line. When I stitch from left to right, the stitches are absolutely perfect! I was having this problem before Christmas also, but I spent some time on the phone with both Amy and Dawn regarding a different problem, and this stopped happening. Now it has started again. So far, I have checked the thread path, changed bobbins, tried sr and no sr, changed speeds, put in new bobbin case, thoroughly cleaned and oiled, and obviously I have changed the tension on both bobbin and top thread countless times. I don't know if it's related, but also, sometimes when I'm tacking in or out, the thread catches on something. It's really hard to see exactly where it's catching. Sometimes if I just wiggle the machine a little to the left or right, it lets go, but otherwise I have to take out the bobbin case and untangle it from underneath while turning the fly wheel. It doesn't seem like it's a burr, it seems more like the thread is getting stuck or hung up on something. I hope this makes sense to someone out there. I'm at a loss, and meanwhile, my customer quilts are not getting done. I would appreciate any help! Lori
  13. I'm going crazy! I quilted on my Millie all day yesterday. Had some preliminary tension issues but was able to adjust the top tension with no further problems. After work today I wanted to finish the quilting and the tension is horrible!! The top tension is very loose! The only difference is I turned off the machine last night and turned it back on tonight . No one touched the machine while I was at work unless I have goblins in the house. I'm using magna bobbins and glide tec thread. I put in a fresh needle yesterday before starting this quilt and oiled/cleaned Millie. Should I be cleaning the tension disks? Comments/suggestions Thanks
  14. I've had this problem before, but now I seem to have it with almost every quilt - a small area where the tension is off and then things are fine again. I can hear it in the stitching, but I'm doing nothing different in that area than any place else. This quilt is about 50" by 60", quilted with a loose meander. Bottom thread is Glide (not pre-wound); top is Superior variegated. 4.0 needle used only for a 20" by 24" wall hanging before this. I have done all the things I know about - checking for debris, watching the thread path when I stitch (which I can't do when I'm actually quilting), cleaning everything I can imagine. Adjusting the tension doesn't seem to make sense because it's fine everywhere else on this quilt. The thread/bobbin thread/needle combo must not the be the problem because it works on the rest (99%) of the quilt. What can it be? Any advice welcome. Robin P.S. I hope you can see the photo. Let me know if it's not clear...
  15. I have just spent the las two days ripping out the stitching on a whole last row of pantograph.... The whole quilt was fine with the exception of a few random loops on the back... most often in a point.... I get done with the last row and unpin and have a whole row of thread barf..... I rip (full 8 hrs of ripping). I make sure my top tension is tight... it's so tight if I tighten it it breaks every couple minutes....my bobbin tension WAS 110 on the towa I loosened it to 100... cleaned my bobbin area/case, checked the backlash spring, decided to replace it just in case.... all was well for 2 feet, then ran out of bobbin, refilled the same one, and barf again.... Rainbows on top, Maxi loc in the bottom, batting in the guide above cone, thru all loops in both duck bills, tension spring goes down to correct spot (9 O'clock) For the love of God what is the problem NOW!!!!!! The bottom of this picture is before the bobbin change-perfect... the top is immediately after.... Thank you in advance :-)
  16. I have a quilt on the frame that is a customer quilt. She brought her own thread for me to use. It is king tut and she wanted it on the top and bottom. I stitched two rows, and although the tension looked ok while I was quilting, it is horrible after I rolled the quilt. Railroad tracks, flatlining, stair step stitches,most on the bottom but some on top too. And, it is a very dense pattern, backing is the white on white fabric (looks like thick white painted on flowers), batting is cotton, and batik on top. 2 hours of quilting and I'm on day 3 going into day 4 for frogging. Bobbin tension is around 100-120, top tension is a little tighter than the bobbin. My hands are very sore! My question is, have you ever used KT top and bottom, and how much tension did you have on the bobbin and top threads? I have already decided to not use her KT on the bottom when I restart the quilting, She is aware that I might not be able to get the top and bottom thread to play nice and was ok with me switching to bottom line if necessary. This is just for any future issues with similiar situations. Thanks in advance, Debbie
  17. Quick help

    I had a customer bring me thread, im using cotton thread, alum bobbin,bobbin tension loose ( shake and 10" drop) request batting. I have fiddled with tension ,screw is slightly past , sticking out on knob, tension is still uneven, what next? Should I loosen bobbin or rethread through holes? Thanks in advance for help.
  18. Hi Everyone. I just ordered a Lucey! As you can imagine I'm super excited. But now, as I wait, buyer's remorse sets in...well not remorse, but worry. My background is I'm a very confident quilter, published author, pattern designer etc. I've been quilting for more than 20 years and I've quilted most of my quilts on my DSM. I know and love my DSM very well. I have a Viking and I almost never have any trouble. Might have to tweak the tension once in a while but other than that it's a work horse. I've had it 9 years and had it serviced only once. And I'm embarrassed to say I'm terrible about cleaning it. I almost never do and I usually only change the needle when it breaks. So, as you can imagine I'm nervous about maintaining a longarm. I've been reading around this forum and all the tension troubles etc are scaring me. I'm really not worried that I won't be able to do it. I'm mechanically inclined and good at troubleshooting etc so I'm fairly confident that I'll get it to work. I'm just nervous that I won't like it. Fiddling with a machine and having to clean it a lot is so not my thing! So really do I have to clean out the bobbin case every time I change it? And oil and clean the machine after every quilt? And am I really going to have to spend forever balancing the tension? I'm also concerned about thread. I really wasn't a snob. For many years I used the basic Coats Dual Duty in all my quilts. Never had a problem, even without cleaning. But I have been converted to Aurifil. I love it. The colors are awesome. Its smooth and beautiful. And I love that it's cotton. I know that poly isn't really "sharp" anymore, but I like to use all cotton (fabric, batting, thread). So I'm wondering if I'll be able to stick to Aurfil 50wt. I'd really rather not explore threads forever. Maybe I'll try So Fine or something for a thread that disappears a little more in the cases that I need that, but do you think I'll be able to make Aurifil work? Oh, I should have mentioned that I'll mostly be quilting for me. Maybe a few customer quilts but mostly I ordered a longarm because I want to continue to do it all start to finish myself. I wish I could believe that Lucey will just work without a lot of thought or care. Is that possible??? Or should I be getting my mind ready for a change? Thanks!! Jess
  19. I've been having weird tension issues. My tension is fine for 20-40 stitches and then will give me a 4-8 stitch patch where it is a bit loose on the top and tight on the bottom. I have tried loosening the bobbin, tightening the bobbin, loosening the top, tightening the top. I've rethreaded the machine, checked for lint/thread build up in bobbin area, changed the needle, changed the bobbin, changed the bobbin case, have the batting above the cone, turned the cone upside down and I cannot find an answer! I am using CAN-SEW polyester thread and Dream cotton batting. 4 hours yesterday and I am no closer than i was when I started! Any ideas out there? Thanks so much!
  20. I'm having a recurring problem with the tension on my APQS Freedom, and I sure hope that someone can shed some light on it. I'm working on a customer quilt, and I've stopped completely about half way through because I just can't seem to get control of this. I've attached some pics (I hope) so that hopefully this will make sense. I'll be stitching along, everything seemingly fine, and then a little loop will appear among my top stitches. Sometimes one or two, and sometimes a lot within just a few inches of stitches. Some are very small, and will probably even out once the quilt is washed. Some, though, are more than I can allow to stay there, and some are making a mess on the back also. I will definitely have to go back and frog some areas and redo them because I can leave them as they are in good conscience. I've tried everything I can think of. I've switched spools of thread, and I've switched bobbins. I've rethreaded the machine. I've checked for burrs. I've endlessly changed tensions of the bobbin and of the top thread. I've put a piece of batting in the thread cone, and a piece in the hook guide above the thread cone. I've moved the position of the hook guide. I've cleaned and oiled, and changed the needle. This has happened before, by the way, and the only difference that I can think of is this: When I've done a quilt that is thicker, as in 2 layers of batting, this doesn't seem to happen. When I think back, I'm pretty sure that this has only happened on thinner quilts with just one layer of batting. In fact, just before I started this quilt, I did one of my own with double batting, and it didn't happen even once! Same thread. I've attached 3 pictures (I hope, I've never added attachments before). The turquoise one is the backing. I sure hope this will be a quick simple fix. I feel strongly that it has to do with the thickness of the quilt for some reason. Thanks!
  21. Side Tension Clamps

    I think I have done a total of 4 quilts on my new Millie. For some reason when I was doing a quilt yesterday, the side tensioning clamps kept catching on the left side of the Millie and messing up my border stitching. I do not remember having this issue on the other 3 quilts that I did. I tried putting a ruler on the poles to raise up the clamps, but that didn't work, it still got caught. It seems for some reason the clamps are sinking lower than on the previous quilts. Does someone have a suggestion on this. It was really irritating Thinking out loud here.....could it be that I don't have the elastic pulled tight enough...........I did try that and it was pulling on the backing so I loosened it up again. TIA
  22. Well.....I have this new Millennium, you see, and I am so frustrated with I can't even look at it ! Tension issues and bobbin issues. I see 'pokies' on back side of quilt... I have tightened the top thread tension so the pokies are gone, and now my thread breaks every 30 seconds. Moving on to the next step, I get my bobbin case out, and my bobbin won't stay in the case, so I can't do a 'drop test'... With the other stuff that went wrong this morning, I just could sit and cry. Ever get that frustrated? Anyone have comments?
  23. I just purchased my first long arm machine. It is an used Ultimate II, non stitch regulated. I'm learning, but need some help. I am having a few loops on the underside of my practice pieces. Can anyone direct me to a manual or video that helps new owners figure things out? Kinda like if this happens (top thread shredding) then you check this, this, and/or this. If your stitches are looping underneath, then you check this..... Does this make sense? It appears there is limited amount of trouble shooting videos on the web. Or at least I haven't found it. I am a <have to see it to learn it> type of person. Although this forum is very beneficial, if I can't see it then I'm having trouble assimilating it into action. Also, does someone have any suggestions on the speed control dial? I'm not sure how that works and how I need to adjust my speed in order to have it all working together. Thank you. Robbin
  24. I've had my Millennium for about 2 weeks now and love it. I've got quilt #5 loaded up. Quilts 1 to 4 were stitched with either the poly thread that came with the machine or Glide thread that I ordered - absolutely no problem. But with #5 I want to use some cotton thread that I have - it's "proper" quilting thread that I used on my previous machine so I know it works. But having trouble with the tension - I've loosened, tightened bobbin and top thread. The top thread keeps breaking. Any ideas out there?
  25. I've been happily using So Fine in the top & bobbin without any problems whatsoever. Now I have a customer that only wants cotton thread to be used. I played with King Tut & Aurfil & am discovering the same thing- I practice to test the tension & things look great, so I start to quilt the panto. The top always looks great & occassionally the bottom tension looks perfect then 2 inches later it looks like my top thread is too loose. I can't tighten my top thread anymore without incurring thread breaks. Am I missing a secret trick? I test every bobbin with the TOWA gauge & aim for 200. Should I loosen it more with cotton thread? Thank you! Robin