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donna sco

Pokey puzzlement -- 3/9 UPDATE w/Pics

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3/8 I discovered that there is a groove in the check spring and have ordered a new one plus spares today from Amy. Thank you to everyone that responded. I felt that I have had a mental block about tension and talked about tension with Amy.

Once I took the quilt off the LA and could see the whole back, the white makes a nice design on the back. When I was only looking at the view on the takeup bar, it look awful.

So now I will try to load some pictures. Don't know how to do multiple so will probably have several replies.

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I am using two different colors on a quilt--a red Glide thread and a white Glide thread. Why do I get pokeys with the red thread and no pokeys when using the white thread????? I wound the bobbins at the same time. I found a second spool of the red and changed spools and still pokeys. Of course the customer supplied a plain back so every pokey shows.

Even the white stitches are better than the red stitching. Do I have to change tension with the colors? I am trying to learn to use a Towa gauge. Just watched a Manquilter You Tube and will try to tighten my bobbin thread and see what happens.

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Donna it is very difficult to not get pokies when you are working with two differnt colored threads. It depends which direction your needle is going so one way you might be good to go but going another you get pokies. You might want to try loosening your bobbin tension a little and then tighten up the top. I almost always match top and bobbin thread. Good luck!

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Originally posted by hmerrill

.... You might want to try loosening your bobbin tension a little and then tighten up the top......

I agree with Heidi.

Even though it's the same brand thread, the bobbin might be a bit different - who knows. Just tweak each bobbin individually.


"Of all the things a woman's hands have made---The quilt so lightly thrown across her bed---The quilt that keeps her loved ones warm---Is woven of her love and dreams and thread." excerpt from The Romance of the Patchwork Quilt by Carrie A. Hall
 

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 Always quilting with her faithful friend, Mademoiselle Madeleine Millennium, Bliss-fully skating gracefully...and having lots of fun with IntelliQuilter

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If you haven't gone too far yet with the quilt, a thicker batting would help give more space in the sandwich for those two colors to connect. or.... I would just play with the tension with each color....


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http://www.flickr.com/photos/sewmanyquiltssewlittletime/

Proud Millie Owner!

Sew Many Quilts - Sew Little Time

Custom Long Arm Quilting

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Don't think I described the problem correctly. One part of the quilt is white and I am quilting with white both in the bobbin and the top.. Other part is red/green prints and I am quilting with red thread--both in the top and bobbin.

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More info please. Describe the pokies--I see it must be with the red thread, but are they on top or underneath? And is the plain backer white? And yes, it's necessary to tweak each bobbin for correct tension. Usually the darker the thread, the thicker it is from saturation of the dye. So the red may be microscopically thicker and therefore need the bobbin tension loosened a bit. And not to be cute, but if the backer is white and you are quilting on white fabric on the top with white thread, there may be pokies in the white and you just can't see them!;) My policy? If ya can't see 'em, it's not a problem! Sorry for your problems and I hope there is an easy solution at hand.


Linda Rech

Finely Finished Quilts

Millennium on Bliss rails--hand-guided

http://www.topperquilttools.com

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Guest Linda S

Yes, dye can affect the thickness and feel of any thread, so the tension for white can be different than the tension for red. Black can be particularly finicky. I readjust my thread every time I change colors or bobbins. One thing to try, if you don't already -- When you start your quilt, and get everything lined up and squared and basted down, ready to go. Place a rectangular scrap of fabric on the margin of the quilt (where you have your extra backing and batting). Stitch around the perimeter of the piece, so it is lying flat like a miniature quilt. Using the thread you will begin with, stitch on this patch -- tight circles, zigzag points etc, so you can see how your thread tension will behave. Adjust it until you have a nice stitch. THEN, and only then, start stitching on your quilt.

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The backing is an ugly dark brown. The quilt top is lovely green/red print with large white areas with a beautiful red embroidered heart. I am McT'g the white area white on white to make the embroidery stand out. The print blocks is where I am using the red in a freehand design.

The pokeys are on the back and are tiny bits of batting coming through with the red thread. I can't tell if there is a connection to direction as it is freehand. I could not see any pokeys with the white thread on the dark brown. Batting is Hobbs 80/20.

The quilter is 85 years old. The backing is only 1-1/2" wider than the top so there is not much room to practice. I have a small practice piece that maybe I can mount beside the quilt. I am becoming paranoid as the front will look ok but I sure don't like the white on the ugly brown back. She is a customer of another long arm quilter who was too busy to do this rush job and referred her to me.

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Donna,

So if I understand correctly, your 'pokies' are actually small pokes of the batting coming through on the dark brown backing, is that right? If that's the case, then you don't actually have a tension problem, it's a bearding problem. It is related to the batting itself.

One problem could be that the batting happens to be in upside down. That can increase batting pokies. You may also be more pleased if you switched to a 3.5 needle instead of the standard 4.0. Normally the 4.0 would be the better choice, but the larger needle is pulling the batting out the back as it also pulls the thread through. A smaller needle will reduce how hard the needle is working to penetrate the back fabric.

In addition, I think Linda is correct in that those batting pokies are also most likely in your white thread (on top and bottom) but you don't see them since the thread is the same color or close to the batting color.

Finally, you may be experiencing what I like to call the "Oreo" effect. When your batting is light colored, and your backing is dark, you'll still be able to see the "oreo filling" (batting) inside the needle hole once the stitch is formed. Since your thread is dark, it makes that oreo filling more noticeable inside the hole, but your white thread hides it.

Don't stress too much...it's only a quilt! :) :)


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APQS Customer Service & Education Director

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dawn@apqs.com

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Everyone is spot on. I also use the "see what my tension is doing" scrap piece on the side before attacking the actual quilt.


Connie
Port Huron, MI   48060
APQS Sales Rep and Educator
Millennium with Intelliquilter (IQ)

"Be a good listener, your ears will never get you in trouble" Frank Tygr


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Guest Linda S

Oh! I didn't realize it was batting pokies. I thought you meant from the thread. Dawn's got ya covered there.

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Donna: I think Dawn hit the nail right on the head. Your photos look like the batting is bearding. I've had this happen to me quite often.

I suggest to my customers that they avoid solid backing fabric. and try to use prints. I also like to use thread colors that kind of blend into the backing fabric. If the quilt is dark, and has a dark backing, I will use black batting to reduce the appearance of the bearded batting. BTW, it seems to me that red is one of the worst colors for bearding problems. I try hard to avoid it. Jim

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I know this is an old thread, but I'm having the same problem. I'm using the same color thread on both sides, So Fine, & a 4.0 needle. My tension is fine. The back is red (not solid but reads solid) & I have quite a few white pokies. This is a comfort quilt. I'm going to try a 3.5 needle. My question is would you rip this out & start over or try throwing it in the dryer like I saw on one thread? I normally furnish my own batting, but this time the batting came with the comfort quilt. So I haven't had this problem before.


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I recently had my first pokies appear on a quilt. I think it happened because the backing had a looser weave (cheap) than most cottons. I changed to a 3.5 needle and it did help (a lot less pokies).


Julie

Julie's Country Quilts

2007 Millenium

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I, too just finished two quilts with hobbs 80/20 and got a ton of pokies. I have found the quality of this product deteriorating lately. It's also very inconsistent lately in that the thickness varies throughout the batt.:(


Shelley Dionne

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