micajah

Venting about wool batting problems

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I have been working on this quilt for the last 3 weeks. I can only work a couple days a week since I still have a job away from home. I am ready to tear my hair out. Being very new to long arm quilting, I at first did not recognize what this quilt was trying to tell me. Now, I can see that all the fiddling with upper tension, lower tension, cleaning rails, wheels, encoders, readjusting my bobbin winder, frogging and resewing....... is not the fault of any of these things. It is the batting! This is a recognized name brand batting, should have been perfect in every way.

Some places it sews beautifully, and then, 2 inches away from the fabulous stitches, it starts stitching with the top thread lying in a straight line on the quilt top or coming up knotty on the bottom of the quilt, and the bottom thread lying in straight line. I stop quilting, frog stitches, check everything again, sew a practice piece, get great stitches again, go back to my quilt and everything repeats!

I purchased two queen sized wool batts in Paducah, 2 years ago. This is the first time, I have used either one of them. It pulls apart and stretches very easily, has thick slubs in some places, and what appears to be some bits of twigs in a couple of spots. :(

I haven't opened the second batt, I won't use it for quilting, maybe stuffing for a pillow or toy. If I had more experience with batting and quilting in general, I would have tossed it the instant I opened it and saw the sorry way it handled on the frame. Unfortunately, I had already stablized the borders all the way down my quilt, before the light bulb went off it was the poor quality batting that was causing my problems.

I have today off, so maybe I will get one more block done. That seems to be the speed at which I am quilting this quilt. Only 50 more to go!

Thanks for allowing me to get this all out of my system.

I just had to tell someone who can understand what I've been going through.

Debbie

Innova 22 "Sweet Dreams"


Debbie

Jackson, Ga.

 

 

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Hi Micajah,

I feel your pain, we all meet these challenges in Longarming. Hang on there and before you know, beautifully finished quilts will come out of your studio.

Corey


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Corey Starkey

IQ & Bllissed Millennium

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Good luck with it. I'm sure you will do a beautiful job, despite the problems. I have had that experience with poly batting. Cheap stuff is REALLY bad. When I use wool I often times get a wavy border. Don't know if it's me or the batting or what.


Marie Brewer

Pine Needle Quilting

Hermosa, SD

Mille Owner

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IMHO this doesn't sound like a problem with the batting. Are you sure the thread is not jumping out of the finger on the bobbin case? Also, perhaps you should re-evaluate how the thread is threaded on the machine. May be none of these but I'm just sayin......good luck.


Just Sew Simple Sylvia Blissett APQS Freedom '09 "Stitch" Circle Lord 2010 “"Until one has loved an animal, Part of their soul remains unawakened.”

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I agree with Heidi - this seems to be specific to this brand of wool batting. I use QD wool all the time on both machines - never a problem. Have also used the wool by Hobbs and no problem with it either ............ I wonder if you purchased a batting that has not been processed for longarm quilting or one that is still in it's most basic condition and therefore takes more care when quilting and will need extra care when cleaning - good luck.

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Thanks Ladies,

None of the manufacturers named so far, was the one who made my batting. It is however a well known brand of batting. I don't feel right naming it, so won't.

Rethreading, changing needles, cleaning, rewinding bobbins, changing thread, it just did not help for more than a couple of inches. It is a bad batt that apparently slipped through inspection. It is a long arm quilting batt.

Hopefully, the quilting is spaced enough to hold it together in the wash. I can't take it out as I've gone too far now.

Words of encouragement were what I needed and it makes me feel sane to hear your opinions and suggestions. Whether I am truly sane or will stay that way....remains to be seen after this quilt is done. I will be sure to take a picture and post it.

Thank you all so very much,

Debbie

Innova 22 "Sweet Dreams"


Debbie

Jackson, Ga.

 

 

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Are you sure that it's not how your bobbins are winding? I'm having the same issues. I have to admit that I'm using wool batting also (first time). When I tested my bobbins on the towa gauge the numbers kept jumping but I used the bobbins anyway and my tension kept coming and going. I changed to a different winder and now the number is consistent the whole time that I pull the thread from the bobbin on the gauge. So far my tension is doing great. I'm also quilting on batiks. Hope this makes sense. I started checking my bobbins after a read someone else's post on here last night.


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2011 Prodigy

www.asthefeathersfly.blogspot.com

http://community.webshots.com/user/thequiltingstitch

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Hi Colleen,

It's not the bobbins. I've adjusted the winder so it is winding perfect bobbins, not too tight or loose and are even across the bobbin. I really believe that it's the batting. It has an uneven consistency across the whole batt. Where the batt is thcker, I get great sttiches, and one inch over, my next line of stitches is awful. Sometimes its on the quilt top and sometimes its on the bottom, but more frequently on the bottom. My top tension has been adjusted, taken apart, cleaned and reassembled several times. I get good tension for 4-5 inches, then its bad again.

I do have another tension dial coming tomorrow. If there is still no change, I think I will speak with the batting company. These two batts were not free. It would be great to be able to replace the one I have left.

Debbie

Innova 22 "Sweet Dreams"


Debbie

Jackson, Ga.

 

 

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In order to evaluate whether anyone else has had a problem, you need to name the batting. We do it all the time. There are only a few "well known" battings left...Fairfield, Pellon, Mountain Mist..come to mind. You don't get sued for saying you have a problem, and you might help somebody else out.

Have you tried changing to a larger needle???

What thread are you using top and bottom?


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After I opened my big mouth and thought I had the problem solved, guess what.....

The next pass started with the tension problem again and continued for the rest of the quilt. I was using Hobbs Wool Batting. It was very inconsistent,thin in places and thick in others. This batting was given to me by the piecer of the quilt. After the experience that I had, I will never buy Hobbs Wool.


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2011 Prodigy

www.asthefeathersfly.blogspot.com

http://community.webshots.com/user/thequiltingstitch

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I'm still fighting this batting...working on the borders and it's not any better. I am using a size 4.0 needle, signature thread, top and bottom. Tried to use glide on the bottom but that only seemed to be worse, so frogged that and went back to signature. The fabric is not batik, just regular cottons. Since I have been asked to name the brand of batting it is a Legacy wool batt. I will be glad to have this quilt completed. Thanks again for all the suggestions but noting seems to work for very long.

Debbie


Debbie

Jackson, Ga.

 

 

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Try using Bottom Line or a comparable thread on the bottom. I find that with a 40 weight cotton on top I have to use this type of thread to get good tension. Glide is a 40 weight polyester thread - the Magna-Glide bobbins from Fil Tec should help though. I just quilted a top with Glide on top and Magna-Glide on bottom with Legacy wool and it turned out beautifully.

You may have just gotten a bad batch - it does happen with any company. If with the different thread you still have problems contact Pellon directly and voice your concern. They should address your concerns.

Good luck!


Roseann M. Noll

Phoenix Rose Quilts

Elysburg, PA

Pellon Legacy Regional Long Arm Batting Distributor

http://www.phoenixrosequilts.com

Check me out on Facebook!:)

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I have not used Pellon wool, but I did have horrible bearding with their cotton blend. I did not find the stitches to be a problem, though. I am not familiar with Signature thread, but it would seem to me that if you are using a Signature cotton, it might be "grabbing" the wool fibers causing bearding and problem stitches. I always use either Bottom Line or the magnetic bobbins from FilTec. Since you have the problem with Glide as well as Signature, it seems the thread may not be the issue.

Try loosening up your quilt considerably. I have a tendency to get the quilt too tight sometimes, and get stitch quality problems. It is amazing how much difference it makes to not have the quilt too tight on the rollers.

Your 4.0 needle should be fine, but if your Signature thread is a heavy cotton, you might go up to a 4.5. Silicone on the top thread may also help.

Try contacting your Innova rep for advice.


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Love the red bobbins! I have both the red and the silver bobbins, which are identical except for the color. I received some of the silver ones before ABM sent out the red ones. The center post is pinched in on both colors. Kandy said they were some of the original batch before the color was applied. Both work equally well. Had not thought to use the sewers aid, but will try it.

My standard rotary tension has just been replaced with the pro tension. Seems to be a good improvement over the standard tension. At least it is easier to trouble shoot the tension as I quilt.

The quilt might be a little tight...will see what results I get with it a little looser will do.

Debbie


Debbie

Jackson, Ga.

 

 

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I don't know what brand you have but , do you have a shiny side on top correctly. Some have 2 differen t sides as it helps stay put with top and backing. Also check your hook area for threads or batting pieces in it.


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www.henhousemachinequilting.com

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There's no shiny side or anything else to designate top or bottom to this batting that I can see. I clean with every change of bobbin so that's not likely to be why I am getting good tension then bad tension, all within the same few inches of stitching. I'm going to try the sewers aid today. The idea that the thread may be catching in the fibers of the batt is something to investigate. Thank you for the suggestions

Debbie


Debbie

Jackson, Ga.

 

 

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I can sympathise with you - although for me, the problems usually happen with cotton wadding. I NEVER have any problems using Matilda's own wool or wool/poly blend. In your case, it does sound like the batting was very unevenly made, which probably contributed to your tension issues, although it's good to check out the other tips mentioned in previous posts.

With thicker top threads, whatever the batting, I've found a thinner thread like bottomline or coats pre-wound bobbins helped produce really good tension.

PS Anyone know of a supplier of the Coats pre-wound bobbins? I only had a few bobbins as a gift when I purchased my APQS in 2009, and would like to get more.


Shelley

Heritage Country Quilting

Western Australia

2009 APQS Millenium, hand guided.

'Waltzing Matilda" or Milly Tilly!

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I think that I saw some of Maltilda's wool batting at Mary Jo's in Gastonia, NC - will have to check to see if she has it online as well.

I will check to see if she has the coats bobbins too. If I purchased some for you and mailed to Austrailia, do you think the shipping would be prohibitive for you if it is coming from an individual instead of a company?


Debbie

Jackson, Ga.

 

 

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There is also a silicone spray and that helps a lot in various thread/tension issues.. shield the lights and needle/bar areas.. I use it about a foot away from where I'm using the needle, but only in the direction I am sewing.

I use it with Sewers Aid or without. Most often With it.

The other thing is use a good bobbin winder.. my Lenni seems to like a quite tight bobbin and a rather tight sandwich.

Good

Luck

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