EdgeSquared

Leaders and loading quilt...do you use pins...sew bating down and top...help

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Edge Squared,  Welcome to the forum for long arm quilting, (apqs mostly) .   Join in and enjoy.  Chat, brag, plead, prayers, whatever.

 

I see you said leader grips, are they the side clamps or the ones attached to the take up roller for the whole quilt, and the quilt back roller?   Do they attach to fabric

which is  attached to the roller bars?    Or, do they have some kind of elastic or velcro strips to hold them to the end bars of the quilt machine?

 

I'm just not "seeing" what you are meaning.

 

Please help us help you, and probably others, too.

We like to share and you can help us. Hugs

 

Rita 

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When I first started I pinned.  I then took my leaders that were on my Millie frame and added zippers.  That still didn't do it for me so tried leader grips.  I was fortunate that a man in my longarm group didn't like them and sold them to me for $10.  I made a casing for them on my zippered leaders.  I still wanted something faster and now added velcro.  I sewed it along my leaders above the casing.  So now my leaders I originally added to the factory installed ones, I have zipper, can use grips, and now velcro.  I now baste the backing onto the leaders with velcro and it is fast and easy to center and adjust if needed.  I still use pins when I'm near the bottom quilting.  I usually go between the grips and velcro depending on size and my mood at the time.  It's nice to have options.  I also always float my top and batting.  I hope this makes sense. :)

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Pins or staples...it depends.

I've often thought of buying one of the loading gimmicks, but never did.

Now I'm so set in my ways that I don't want one.

And I load my backer without marking the centers using Linda Rechs awesome advice.


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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Hello. I've been an APQS member for over 8 years and bought my Millennium shortly after. However, just after I ordered my Mille, I accepted part-time job (as a court reporter) that turned out to be almost full-time (with transcripts). As a result, until now, haven't had the time to do anything with my machine. Full of inspiration, I ordered all the pocket guides, long-arm quilting books, zippers. et cetera, shortly after getting my machine. I did take one course with Karen McTavish when she came to Ontario (Canada), but I'm a very long way from being remotely able to do anything so advanced.

The CD I received with my Mille that shows how to load the quilt isn't clear enough for me to know whether I've got everything loaded right. I don't know if there's a better instruction CD available. I'm also uncertain what I should be doing about oiling (if required) and any other pre-use maintenance tips. I have a motorized feed on my machine.

Given the above, would anyone have any advice they could share with this 'newbie' about where I can find information on loading (practice muslin) a quilt on my machine properly and anything else I should know before I start my long overdue practicing?

Thanks in advance.

Carolyn

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Hi Carolyn,

 

There are a number of videos posted by APQS on the site.  This one is a series by Amy on maintenance and she has a video about oiling the machine.

 

http://www.apqs.com/instructional-videos/

 

I am not at home at the moment so I can't check my DVDs for one with loading instructions.  If I remember correctly Myrna Ficken shows how to load on her beginners video.

 

http://aquilterschoice.danemcoweb.com/shop/product/beginning-longarm-quilting/

 

If you scroll to the top of this page and click on the APQS Website button on the left you will find lots of info there and if you haven't already be sure to sign up for the blog.


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so where do I find Linda's advice? Enquiring minds and all :)

 

 

Sorry I missed this post, Dave!

Many moons ago I posted on how I load a wonky backer without squaring up the whole thing. It loads evenly and you can tell when loaded how much usable width there is. Most extra wide backers are wound crooked on the bolt and if the shop won't tear the fabric on the straight of grain and instead cut with a rotary cutter, you're assured of having a piece of fabric in a parallelogram shape instead of a rectangle. This causes major problems of trying to square the fabric and sometimes not having enough usable fabric for the top. This method allows you to load square and see immediately if there is enough fabric width to confidently load the top.

 

I load the backer ignoring the center mark on the leader. I always use a straight fabric edge--either a selvage or a torn edge, and pin onto the front backer leader. Then I advance the roller so the pinned edge is close to the roller. Take the backer fabric under the roller, under the leveler roller, and over the back take-up roller. Go to the back and pull and straighten the fabric so it's tight going from roller to roller and the rest of the fabric is pooled at the back and straighten as much as you can. Go to the front, unclamp the brake and advance the backer toward you to load onto the front roller. The leader fabric has enough bite to hold the fabric smoothly as it comes toward you. Watch the top of the back roller for ripples or wrinkles. When those appear, stop, brake, and smooth the fabric from the front (if you have long arms) or go to the back and tug both edges so the fabric is again smooth. Keeping the pooled fabric straight to feed onto the roller is a big help. Keep advancing and smoothing until the far edge of the fabric just clears the back table top. 

 

Now you check for square. If the far edge is slanted, eyeball the slant and place a pin at the long end the same distance up from the table as the short end. This will show you where the straight line is to pin the backer to the leader. For ease of pinning, flip the fabric towards the front, going under the top roller and over the leveler roller. I place a pin through both layers of backer to hold it while I prepare the backer leader for loading. Unroll enough leader so you can bring the edge up from inside the roller and lay it across the top with the loading edge facing you. Unpin the backer and bring it up between the two rollers and lay it along the edge to ready for pinning. I use the imaginary line that I eyeballed and marked with a pin to adjust the backer edge. Then I pin in the middle and smooth the backer out so the "line" i decided upon is in position to pin. Now look at the slack fabric hanging down like a hammock between the rollers. This step is the one where you find and pin the backer straight. Just as if you are straightening yardage for straight-of-grain before you cut it, if you see slanted ripples, unpin and adjust the fabric until the slanted ripples are flat. Pin in the center, both ends (making sure you use that imaginary straight line across the bottom edge) and then in between. Flip the pinned edge down so everything hangs nicely, go to the front and advance the backer towards the back roller to pick up the slack. I then advance back and forth to get the same tension on the backer overall.

 

Now check for side scrolling. If the sides have fabric overlapping or scrolling out, the backer is obviously not a rectangle. Your usable quilting width is the shortest width, which on the scrolling-out side is probably where your outside loading pin is. Feel where that pin is and mark that position on your top leader with a blue marker or a piece of painter's tape. The other edge will be scrolling in. Mark where the fabric is the narrowest--usually the very edge. The distance between the two marks is the usable width of the backer. If that measurement is too short for the quilt top, contact your customer and let them know they'll need a bigger backer.

 

My customers are so angry when this happens and I've advise many many customers to ask for their extra-wides to be torn and not cut. Most LQSs have that advisory on their big backers and really they only need to tear a width from the first few inches of a bolt to get a straight edge for every other piece they tear.

 

Dave--if this was confusing and you need a visual, you can come to the next Moxies and I'll demo for you.  :)


Linda Rech

Finely Finished Quilts

Millennium on Bliss rails--hand-guided

http://www.topperquilttools.com

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Thanks, Sue, for the information. I had a friend over to watch the video with me and it seems I've got it loaded right. She has a Voyager quilting system, so it's quite a bit different from the Mille.

I'll go to the websites you mentioned and see what I can find there.

Carolyn

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I hated the leader grips, I use the red snappers.  It all about "your comfort zone".


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


sewsweetgator@aol.com
http://www.yoursite.com
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Hello. I've been an APQS member for over 8 years and bought my Millennium shortly after. However, just after I ordered my Mille, I accepted part-time job (as a court reporter) that turned out to be almost full-time (with transcripts). As a result, until now, haven't had the time to do anything with my machine. Full of inspiration, I ordered all the pocket guides, long-arm quilting books, zippers. et cetera, shortly after getting my machine. I did take one course with Karen McTavish when she came to Ontario (Canada), but I'm a very long way from being remotely able to do anything so advanced.

The CD I received with my Mille that shows how to load the quilt isn't clear enough for me to know whether I've got everything loaded right. I don't know if there's a better instruction CD available. I'm also uncertain what I should be doing about oiling (if required) and any other pre-use maintenance tips. I have a motorized feed on my machine.

Given the above, would anyone have any advice they could share with this 'newbie' about where I can find information on loading (practice muslin) a quilt on my machine properly and anything else I should know before I start my long overdue practicing?

Thanks in advance.

Carolyn

Try Youtube you can find anything you need there .

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