Marion S

Bottom thread breaking

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I am a little stressed out - I have quilted more than 15 quilts on my new to me lenni and haven't had any major problems. I am working on my first quilt for a customer and I'm having a terrible time. I always check the back for tension issues I finished my first row and was advancing the quilt when I noticed several - more than 5 places where the bottom thread broke - on the top it looked like it was still stitching. I repaired them and did another row - holy cow it's still doing it!! I feel like I should take it all out and start over. Why is the thread breaking? I put a new needle in. 

If I take it all of the machine and take it apart will I be able to get the needle holes out of the fabric?

Help!! 

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I am new too...just have done practice muslin on my Lucey....but I am wondering if you are using a differant thread in the bobbin from you were using before?  Maybe the thread is old or fragile....perhaps if you let this forum know what thread you are using and the weight it will help...maybe also the top thread too.....and type of batting  and fabric...any of these different than what was working for you before?  And also have you tried a new needle? or the size might make a difference too....Lin

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I am using superior threads 'so fine' top and bottom. Same size needle I have been using all along - 4.0. The bottom thread just broke, but it kept sewing and looked normal on top. I am using warm and natural cotton batting which is what I've used on almost every other quilt.

My big concern right now is, can I take it all out and start over - can I get rid of the needle holes - it looks like maybe kansas troubles or thimbleberries fabric.

I use mostly batiks so am not sure which one. (although I have quilted a lot of different fabrics - charity quilts)

There are enough thread breaks that I think it would be better to start over if I can. Any suggestions for the needle holes? I am going to take the whole thing off the machine and take it out. - (3 bobbins worth UGH!!)

I have the humidifier going - we are in northern VT and it is still cold and dry. 

The stitches looked fine, but I'm guessing the bobbin tension was too tight

I appreciate any helpful hints!

 

No I haven't figured it out for sure - took a break to clear my head.

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You know what, I have an older machine, but I had this happen to me too!  I read through posts on here and Dawn mentioned something about checking the bobbin thread and how it's wound (among other suggestions).  I'm no expert, but my bobbin thread breaks when my bobbin thread is wound too loose.  My bobbin winder doesn't work properly so I wind mine on my featherweight...sometimes the tension just isn't enough and I get sort of, soft loosely wound spots throughout my bobbins...sometimes I just change bobbins and it's fine, sometimes I can just pull some of the thread off the bobbin and get it to go back to normal.  So, for me, my first thought would be check how the bobbins are wound - check the bobbin winder tension, or check the bobbins.  Bobbins do go bad, although I've never had it happen to me that I know of (maybe I'm still too inexperienced to know when mine have worn), I have heard of bobbins sort of wearing out or getting out of whack and not winding properly anymore.

 

Edited to add - I see that you figured it out?  Tension was too tight?


Valerie Smith

Pumpkin Patch Quilter

http://www.pumpkinpatchquilter.com

http://www.pumpkinpatchquilter.etsy.com

Pantograph Co-Designer for Urban Elementz

https://www.urbanelementz.com/shop/category/quilting-designs-by-designer/valerie-smith/

 

**As of March 2015 I will be Quilting on a 2000 APQS Certified Used Millennium!**

Quilting from January 2013 to February 2015 on a non-stitch regulated 1999 Ultimate 1

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Check to see that your bobbins aren't spongy. They should be firm. Next check for lint in your bobbin. Use a piece of paper under the finger to remove lint and blow out the bobbin case. Then blow out your hook assembly. Have you dropped your bobbin case? Do you have a spare bobbin case you might it.

As for the holes I would remove your stitches then reload the quilt. You can spritz it lightly with water and use you fingernails to rub the holes. I have heard of someone using a toothbrush one of the battery powered ones. I have removed stitches reloaded restitched then spritzed it if the holes were still real obvious. The should not show after the first wash.

Hope this helps.

Shirley

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I had a thread caught in the bobbin assembly one time! Didn't know it until I cleaned it with WD40 and blew it out with my compressed air. Out it came and no more thread breaking. Check for caught threads!!!~


Dell 2016 Millie Frannie Ann Jr. with Bliss & she is Quiltaziod and Circle Lord Equipped with lots of Quilting Toys and now has Quilt Path!

 

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Hi Marion

 

Sorry you are having a frustrating day!  Good advice you've been given here. Other things to check -  did you change the needle again?  There can be duds.  Check the sandwich is loose enough,  try a newly wound bobbin using different thread top & bottom. 

 

As for the needle holes,  I usually just rub with a finger nail or a regular (unused!) toothbrush.  By the time the quilt comes off the frame the holes have usually disappeared.

 

Call me if I can help further. :)


Anne



Anne Harmon 802 876 7535 Harmony Quilts & Designs harmonyquiltsvt@gmail.com 2005 APQS Millennium Authorized APQS Dealer

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Marion,Ni feel your pain. If you decide to unstitch, spritz the top & backing separately, batik fabrics will bleed, then use the toothbrush on the holes while still wet.

I turn my compressor on and blow air on my bobbin and bobbin assembly area (separately) and spray WD40 on both, then warm up the Machine.

Make sure the bobbin case is free of lint, use calling card to remove lint hiding under the spring thingy, wipe the WD40 and oil on the bobbin assembly. Blow Compressed air every bobbin change.

Shirley is right on, you need spare bobbin case and spongy thread on the bobbin is not good. I would change needles, check tensions on the bobbin case, retread and loosen the quilt a bit.

Test your stitches on a separate practice quilt sandwich.


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Corey Starkey

IQ & Bllissed Millennium

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maybe u need a new anti-spin spring when I use a bobbin that has a lot of holes sometime the spring will catch and cause the thread to break. sometimes a crooked bobbin will  cause  this too. take the bobbin case out and try to pull the thread off by hand and see what happens. Carol

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Lots of good advice here! I am going to finish taking it all out - should be done by noon :-( 


and start over. Thanks to everyone for taking the time to respond. I'll post later to let you know how its going.


 


 


You know, the thread breakage made me forget for awhile - I just took a class w Dawn Cavanaugh at the New England Quilt show - it was about trouble shooting problems w a customers quilt. I caught a popped seam in the quilt before I loaded it and repaired it - then I loaded the quilt and started quilting and found a seam where she had missed when adding the borders and there was an actual hole in the top. So, I have had a lot of 'new' experience in one quilt!! I hand sewed this (which I don't love).


Murphy's law or something. My first 'paid' quilting experience has a lot of experience involved!  :)


BTW Dawn's classes were great. I would recommend to beginner and experienced quilters.


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When I have needle holes (usually from frogging) I finish the quilting before I do anything.

Then, after ive finished it i trim it up.

Then I lightly spritz the area where the holes are and toss the quilt in the dryer.

Medium heat for about 5-10 minutes with a tennis ball.

I am nothing if not lazy and this works for me.

I should add, there are no customers in my world.

Just me and my very understanding and grateful quilty friends.

Hope you get it sorted out.


Meg

"Do small things with great love." Mother Teresa

"Life's too short to fuss with thread." Meg Fazio

http://theonewiththreadsonherclothes.blogspot.com/

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

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One more thing to check. Make sure your bobbin turns to the right (clockwise) when it's in the bobbin case. Make sure you're looking at the bobbin as you drop it in the case and pull the thread through the tension slit. If it's in backwards, your thread will break. It doesn't usually start sewing after skipping a few stitches though. It just breaks. It's an easy thing to do and causes a world of headaches.


Merry Jo

Merry Jo Rembold, Julian, CA

APQS Sales Representative

Millie & Quilt Path

Facebook: Creative Quilting by Merry Jo

Merryjorembold.com

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Well....after 9 hours of unquilting I tested and adjusted the tension on a muslin sandwich. Gonna reload the quilt and hold my breath!  :)

 

Update: Mon

I reloaded quilt yesterday, did a whole row across, advanced the quilt and held my breath - I had been checking the bottom but it's hard to see - my husband picked up some high power mag. glasses at the dollar store for me yesterday :-)

The tension/stitch quality looked fine. Started the second row and snap! The top thread broke on the top this time. Started again and same thing. I turned off the machine, poured myself a big fat glass of wine and watched tv for the rest of the night. ( I did refill my glass)

This morning I got up and loaded the humidifier, ran it for 4 hours while working on other things, walking back and forth glaring at the quilt through the corner of my eye.... :ph34r: just tried a row and it was fine. I was ready to throw the cone of thread away.

I have bonded with this quilt at this point - do you think my customer will mind if I visit once and a while?  :blink:

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As I mentioned in an earlier post, a new bobbin case made a huge difference with all issues!!!  I can use most any thread now and seldom have to adjust my top or bottom tensions.  This has been a big issue and most frustrating in the past.  What have you got to lose?  At least you'll have another bobbin case to use.

Beth

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Marion,

 

By chance does this quilt have any "white on white" fabric in it? Or on the back? The fact that your machine behaves for partial or complete rows but then starts to act up makes me wonder...whenever there's an excess of starch or sizing in a quilt, or if it's got interfacing or the white-on-white fabric, the heat of the needle causes the starch, adhesive and even the white paint from the fabric to melt and cling to the needle. It buries itself into the long groove down the front of the needle. Once that happens, the top thread sloshes all over the place in the eye and then eventually breaks since it doesn't stay aligned. 

 

If it's white on white fabric (top or bottom) then that darn paint builds up in the bobbin raceway too, causing lots of bobbin thread breaks. Keep us posted!


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APQS Customer Service & Education Director

1-800-426-7233

dawn@apqs.com

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I was told to spray quite a bit of water onto the thread and that helps stop the problems in low humidity.

 

I also use Sewers Aid, a silicone liquid, which also cuts the static and helps even in cotton.

 

I also have a spray silicone and use it to help keep the thread from breaking.  Works wonders.  LOL,

Even with the humidifier on all the time in the house.. I have had to resort to Static Guard.  I've seen

no adverse reaction to any of these products.

 

Where there is a will, there must be a way, Right?

 

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It's done! The original problem was tension, then humudity. I was ready to throw the thread away, but the humidifier helped. Dawn, I used a lot of the tricks I learned in your classes!! Would have taken a lot longer to figure out, and most likely some tearful phone calls to someone there for help. 

Trying to figure out how to post a photo......

 

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I took a class with Sharon Schambler once, and she dunks her thread cones and bobbins in a bucket of mineral oil. Yep, completely dunks them, then pulls them out, blots the excess off, cleans the inside of the cone, and on the machine they go. I was very skeptical about this. I would have bet my life I would see oil leech off the stitch line onto the fabric. It didn't!!! I don't do this regularly, but I have done it with some unruly thread and a few times when the wind was causing a lot of static electricity. It worked wonders. No breaks. She made a believer out of me. Sometimes thread can be the problem, too. So many things to trouble shoot! Fabric, thread, tension, OH MY!


Merry Jo

Merry Jo Rembold, Julian, CA

APQS Sales Representative

Millie & Quilt Path

Facebook: Creative Quilting by Merry Jo

Merryjorembold.com

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