JaneinAustin

Catch spring - do they ever get tired?how can you tell?

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Hi All,

I do not have an APQS but my friend Angie says you are great in troubleshooting.

Thank you Dawn C for the anatomy of a stitch YouTube. I've understood tension /drag for years. Perhaps because I started out life fly-fishing and spinning rod fishing with my dad, then learned to sew on my mom's 301 singer.

Anyway... the topic is...

The little catch spring. The one that the thread passes 'over' after going through the top tension assembly...on the way to the dog-leg then up to the take-up bar.

Does that little spring-steel spring... ever get 'tired'. And what changes in the performance ? stitch appearance?

Angie and I were wondering (she had an APQS Ultimate II for a long time).... if it plays any roll in stitch quality.

If so, what changes in the stitch formation?

Thank you for any discussion..

Jane in Austin... 102 degrees for the third month in row.

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When you gently push backwards does it still have "spring" or is it limp? It should have resistance.

Another thing you can test for is does it have any "burrs". Take a piece of thread (or dental floss) and draw it up against the top and "floss" to feel for any burrs or notches that could cause drag.

Yes, sometimes the checkspring does have to be replaced but there may be other things that are more common that cause tension problems.

Donna


Donna

APQS Liberty-new to me!

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I am not an expert (hope someone else posts too) but yes the catch spring can and does get "tired." I replaced mine after about 2 years (I quilt full time), and the tension was a lot better after.


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Quilting from the Heart

APQS Millenium, Circle Lord equipped, hand guided and lov'n it!!!

http://rosecityquilter.wordpress.com/

http://qfth.ca

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As for myself. If I quilt a lot then I will change mine out about every 6 months. If you quilt about 1 or 2 quilts a week, then I would replace it every year to be on the safe side. The check spring does not cost much and break your bank account so I would buy a few at a time. The most that your going to see with the weaking of the spring is the poor quality of the stitch. I would just check the spring once a week to make sure that it still has sufficient strength in it. It shouldn't be loose while sitting there on the tensionor and there should be a little give when pulling it back to see if it has any springiness. I prefer the black springs, because it easier to see if there is a small bur in the cleft of the spring, though the chrome ones work just fine as well. You might want to make sure that the check spring isn't too close to the machine housing as well. That will make the spring stick in place and not work very well. I hope this helps you out. Regards, zeke............


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by the hour.........................

APQS Ultimate I/Compuquilter

Millennium

ztrbrg@yahoo.com

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Guest Linda S

I have quilted for 7 years with my Liberty and recently noticed that my spring needed a bit of Viagra. I was snapping threads even though I had the tension set very loose, and the spring was just limp. ;) I panicked when I changed the spring (yes, I happened to have one) because a whole bunch of metal shavings came out with the tension assembly, but apparently, they were there from when my Liberty was originally machined. Cleaned it all up, replaced the spring, and voila! It works perfectly again. Didn't really need any of the little blue pills!

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mm this post is interesting, and makes me realise how little I actually know about replacing certain parts and when they are recommended, I should probably read the manual some more !!! What else have I missed??? :D


3903CF121430B009ACE771072A3FAF28.pngLenni 2009

on IQ carriage with edgerider wheels and 2012 Lucey on bliss

www.j-quilts.co.uk

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Hi Donna, Ardelle, Zeke and Linda,

Thank you all for replying.

I had no clue that a check spring could get a burr/groove.

And I totally agree, changing a check spring... a very easy and cheap 'fix' when trying to eliminate possible problems.

I'm going to order two today. I've had my frame for 3 years, quilt only for myself/charity... have done about 75 ?? quilts so it may be time.

One thing about frame quilting....... it's more demanding on all aspects of the machine (vs sewing seams) , I think.

I appreciate you all,

Jane

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Hi Zeke,

I'm going to order new Check Springs -- the one I have on the machine is pretty darn spring-y

However, I just 'flossed' it. I just gently rubbed cotton thread back and forth over the surface of the check spring that the thread rubs over.

Gaak, it has a rough spot at least 1/8 inch long... perhaps 3/16th...

If nothing else... I can imagine that... that roughness catches a ply of thread occasionally... enough to help cause the occasional 'ply pile up' at the needle.

Thank you for the flossing advice. I've always 'flossed' my upper thread tension to remove any lint build up... but I feel silly that I never included the check spring.

Jane in Austin

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Hi Jane,

I only know this because I had the opportunity to take a maintenance class from Mark Caraher at Sparrow Studios last Wednesday. It was full of great info!!!

You may also want to check the rest of your thread path for wear i.e. three hole guides, pigtail guides and even your needle plate (using a magnifying glass). These can be smoothed out with an emery cloth.

Also, going back to step one and examining your thread can sometimes be the problem. Is it old? is it a bad spool? Check by starting with a new cone, and needle....maybe it is just a bad spool and you need to toss it.

Donna

APQS Liberty


Donna

APQS Liberty-new to me!

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Yup they can get tired. JaneinAustin are you the same Jane in austin that had a handiquilter and was on the about.com forum?


JUST QUILTING

APQS SALES & SERVICE

Fil-Tec / Glide Distributor

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Hi Donna, and Jeri....

Thanks for the further advice. I've been 'eliminating' possible problems and have changed out thread, types/brands, needles types/brands and even different bobbins and 2 different bobbin cases. Cleaned thoroughly etc... it's so important to eliminate all easy-possibles, in order to fine the 'weird ones'.

and Jeri,

yes, it's me...... I haven't been on About.com in years. I quilted over 100 quilts on my little HandiQuilter table top frame, HandiHandles and Brother PQ1500 machine. I still have that set-up.. just haven't used it in 3 yrs.

Hi, back ! Jane in Austin

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Hi Jane and all.

As you already know, the check spring has to be bouncy and smooth or it can cause problems with stitch quality. I have an old 91-15 Singer from the 1940's that is in desperate need for a new CS. The thing has no bouce and is rusted. I have the part but have not taken the time to take it all apart and put the new one in...since I do not use it, there is in no rush!!

About the old machine - it is one of four I "rennovated" last summer. Took me days and days. By the time I got to the last one, I was dirty and tired! Never got back to the CS. My whole house stunk of harsh chemicals for weeks. It was satisfying to see them all shiny and new looking after 70+ years of sewing. Hope I look that good!!!!:D

The burrs can be nasty too - I just take a regular thread and run it along by hand to see if it catches. How did you do it, Jane? Did you use dental floss? If you have a lot of wear, you can use fishing line guides made with ceramic coatings instead of the standard sewing machine ones. I know you make lots of quilts, this may help. Good thread helps as well. Oh, the mono threads are very harsh on the guides and quickly wear burrs into them.

Hope all is well for you Jane. I always enjoyed your chats on the about forum.


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APQS Liberty

Circle Lord

North West New Jersey

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