Sheagatzi

How perfect does it have to be...( a bit of a rant)

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This is a bit of a rant  - and two questions LOL -  one question about how picky should you be (I apparently am very picky, or so I've been told)   and another about my stupid tension.  

 

I had a horrible quilting job just now.   My stupid tension was off in sporadic spots.  On my hands and knees with my light and glasses every 5 minutes to check that it was okay.  It was. And then I'd quilt for 5 minutes and the buggers would sneak loops and tracks in that moment I wasn't checking.  Top thread stitches looked beautiful. sigh.  Bobbin thread lays flat, and double loops for each stitch showing through - but flat loops -no sticking up loops.   Sporadic-  no rhyme or reason.  

 

So,  as I was picking out my stitches in several spots and reloading my quilt and restitching those areas, I thought -   just how picky should I be?  

 

If it is a loop I can snag and bury, I do.   If it is really obvious  - I pick it out from one point to the next and restitch.   

 

How picky are you in your quilting?  When do you turn a blind eye?  

  grr!!!

 

pic below is one of the offending stitches (which I pulled out and restitched)

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Andrea  http://www.urbanquiltworks.com

Motha Stitcha on an apqs millennium

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It shows up on the fabric you are quilting so I would probably pick it out .  I try not to have things out there that someone can say " look at this  "   I am getting paid and if I would be upset to pay someone for the job then I pick it out.  But like you I am probably to picky too.


Quilting Joyfully,

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Hi Andrea,

I completely understand.  I was having bad railroad tracks on the curves not long ago.  I always do the bobbin drop test, but when I pulled the bobbin thread thru the quilt sandwich it pulled really hard.  After much trial and error I adjusted the fingers on the bobbin spring, they were too far out and was causing the bobbin to be too tight.  That did help a bunch.

It doesn't look like that's your problem, but is your bobbin spinning too freely?  Are the fingers not up quite enough?

Seems we have too many options and each quilt presents new challenges.  Some of the wide backs cause problems, battings are different, I use several brands of threads which all play a little differently with each other.  I don't doubt the humidity in the air influences the tension also.

I check under my quilt every bobbin change and maybe halfway thru a bobbin too, just in case.  It seems the tension can adjust as the bobbin gets emptier.  Then there are some quilts where the tension seems perfect all the way thru.  I'm starting to make a list of those good combinations. The last quilt I had great tension on was Glide on top, Superior BL in the bottom, QD poly/cotton batting and a wide back.  Never had an issue.

Wish I had a magic answer for you.  You are a beautiful quilter and it's hard to give a quilt back when you're not satisfied with it.  Hopefully others on the forum will have some suggestion for the issue in your photo.


Pat C

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While these are the instructions for a Brother sewing machine, it would probably get you close for setting up your APQS bobbin spring.

 

 

When do you check it?  At installation of machine and at every bobbin change.

How do you check it? Install a brand new bobbin, (for the correct weight), in the bobbin case. Hold bobbin case level with open side up or lay upside down on a table. The bobbin should be .5mm above the top of the bobbin case. I recommend the prewound, with two cardboard sides that have a serration on the flat surface of the cardboard. This helps slow down the bobbin when in machine.

 

 

Cagey

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May your threads be balanced, and your bobbin forever full….

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The back of your quilt looks exactly like what I have been going thru for years. It took away the joy of quilting when you are frogging all the time. The best advice I received just a week ago on the forum was the Magna glide bobbins.  Oh my goodness they make such a difference. Like everyone that suggested it said I will try never to wind my own bobbins again. I would do the same thing with the finger in bobbin case and it would work for maybe 1/2 row. If at all possible try the Magna glide bobbins and see if it makes a difference. If you would like to try them without buying the large amount if you send me your address I will send you some to try and see if it helps before you buy them.


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You are not being too picky if you are presenting your work with the quality that you want shown to the public! You do beautiful work and your reputation as a great quilter is worth a lot of ripping out. It shows the pride you have in your work. This forum is great for helping us all get through the rough spots.


Jennifer Bernard

My quilted jackets are on a competition journey around the country

gathering pretty ribbons (sometimes)!

Quilting with my Millennium and playing with my Quiltazoid!

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Ah rats!  I know what you're saying but when my tension is off, it's a lot more off than what yours shows.  The two things that helped me the most were prewound bobbins and a Towa gauge.  When I can't get prewounds (not all colors have prewounds) then I fill my bobbin pretty tight and watch it as it fills.

May the rest of your quilts be smooth sailing...

Joan

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I've considered getting a Towa gauge but possibly I don't understand quite how it works.  From my understanding it will show the tension when the bobbin is in the case but not in the machine.  In my experience the bobbin can take on an entirely different tension once inserted into the machine.

 

I have had good luck with the magna glides too so certainly would recommend trying those.


Pat C

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I've considered getting a Towa gauge but possibly I don't understand quite how it works.  From my understanding it will show the tension when the bobbin is in the case but not in the machine.  In my experience the bobbin can take on an entirely different tension once inserted into the machine.

 

 

 Pat:

The Towa measures the tension on the bobbin case.  Insert bobbin into bobbin case, then snap the loaded bobbin case into the gauge.  Pull thread through the guides and the display shows the tension on the thread as it is being pulled.  You find a sweet spot for your machine for each type of bobbin thread; then adjust the tension set screw.  I keep a separate bobbin case for each type of bobbin thread, i.e. Magna Glide Delights, Magna Glide Classics, Bottom Line, So Fine. 

Hope this video helps!

 

 

 

https://www.superiorthreads.com/videos/towa-bobbin-tension-gauge/


<p>Vickie Oliver Beachside Quilter APQS Rep SW FL 2013 New Gen Millennium, Quilt Path

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Thanks for all the suggestions.   I  quilted yesterday and today again,  I quietly tiptoed to Milllie,  stroked her neck...whispered sweet nothings and started on a new quilt.

 

No really.   I quilted two quilts.   I used the same bobbin thread (so fine, self wound)   and this time Glide thread, rather than Magnifico.   The only difference I can tell between the Glide and Magnifico is the way they come off the cone -  one comes off clockwise, and one comes off counterclockwise.    I am wondering if that is the culprit?   

 

Anyways,  the Glide combination was beautiful -  I didn't adjust the tension at all.   No problems whatsoever.   I'm stumped!

 

I patted her just now, and told her 'good girl'.  LOL 


Andrea  http://www.urbanquiltworks.com

Motha Stitcha on an apqs millennium

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I would have pulled them out and re-quilted them also.  This is why I buy magna glide bobbins.  I no longer have to get down on my hands and knees and pray to my machine that it should behave.  I have no need to pull out tons of stitches.  The stress and frustration those bobbins save me is worth a lot more than those bobbins cost!

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Andrea

 

It very well could be the culprit.  I believe the idea of winding the thread through the 3 hole guide is to take the twist out of the thread.  If the thread spools off the cone in the opposite direction you may be adding more twist.   Try going through the 3 hole guide in the opposite direction with that particular thread and see if that helps.  I know I had some issues the first time I used Glide and noticed the winding was opposite to the other threads I had used before.  Let us know if this works for you.

 

Nigel


Brenda Wells - Green Millie. Sold November 2017
Nigel Wells - Ultimate 1 with Intellistitch & IQ.  Sold January 2019

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I am with you on the glides, that is all i use now and I never have any problems with the bobbin tension....and you are right, people will show off their quilts and you don't want anyone to be able to point out any problems so I would probably pick them out too...it is a reputation thing....and it does take the joy out of it when you have to constantly pick quilting out...I just buy the bobbins and pass the cost on to my customers, it just makes my job easier and we are all happier....


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Yes, thinking of going to the magna glides now too.   I surrender!!!    

 

Part of my personality is to really figure out things on my own and analyze them and how they work.    Thus, I need to figure out this one.  ;-)     I'm thinking the way it comes off the spool is the culprit.  I have one other brand of thread that I need to check on the direction it comes off the spool, and if it is the same as Magnifico - then it may well be the issue.    I always assumed that glide and magnifico were very similar threads, but then I noticed they came off the cones differently.  Perhaps that one nuance is it.    Will let you know.   

 

I also like to write and report it here as a way for others to consider possible things that affect tension change.  Hopefully my problems are your solutions in the future!  
 

 

Thanks everyone!   :D


Andrea  http://www.urbanquiltworks.com

Motha Stitcha on an apqs millennium

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I do not believe the thread guides are supposed to take out any "thread twist" during the spool unwind.  By adding a twist to the thread, you would be increasing the diameter of the thread, which could cause problems.  By removing a twist from the thread, you would be decreasing the diameter of the thread.  Which would also appear to weaken the thread causing it to break more easily.  I believe the thread guides are simply there to ensure a consistent thread tension.  

 

When you get into the direction of thread twist, you are actually discussing if the thread has a "S" or a "Z" wind.  "Dr. Thread" has a discussion of this concept at http://www.superiorthreads.com/videos/thread-twist-how-thread-is-twisted/

 

Here is another explanation on metallic threads.  It talks about thread twist and thread twisting that causes tension problems.  While I do not believe this is part of our discussion here, it is informative and suggest what to look for when buying metallic thread.  http://www.superiorthreads.com/videos/dr-bob-metallic-threads-part-one/  Video two gets into lubricating thread, and moisturizing it; http://www.superiorthreads.com/videos/dr-bob-metallic-threads-part-two/  Three minutes and thirty seconds is rather funny, and tells us how to get rid of lower quality threads.  

 

You might try adding a thread net to the spool to see if this helps with your tension issues.  It might be as simple as Glide likes one thread path, while magnifico likes another.  I would suggest you get a practice quilt sandwich and just experiment with the a different spool of magnifico.  If the new spool works fine, you could have a bad spool.  If the two spools of Magnifico both have the same issues, it is a problem with tension, needle,  or thread path.  Just experiment with tweaking them, and figuring out what works for you.  Though in the end, I believe you have already found you solution.  

 

For you Glide works!  I have to believe that Glide can be found in any color that you just love in Magnifico.  So why in heavens name would you purchase Magnifico, and cause yourself headaches when you can find Glide in the same color and it brings you nothing but pleasure?  Unless whacking your thumb with a hammer brings you pleasure, stick with what works for you.  Master that one thread, and become the quilter we all strive to be.  Work smarter, not harder.  

 

Cagey


May your threads be balanced, and your bobbin forever full….

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I just try to do the very best I can do with each quilt - that said I think my personal "best" gets better with every quilt I work on.  

 

I too wonder if it's the bobbins causing you issue...but I'm kind of wondering if maybe it's the winder.  Do you use a turbo winder?  I had an older winder with my Ulti 1 and the bobbins didn't seem to come out consistent.  I started winding on my Juki until I got the newer machine with a turbo winder and I have seen such a huge difference in the consistency of my bobbins.  Wonder if you want to loosen the tension a bit for So Fine and thinner threads?  I STILL wind my thinnest threads (monopoly, silk, and invisifil) on my Juki and I only wind a half bobbin.  I will be watching to see what helps!  

 

I had crazy tension in spots forever until you all here told me about the leveler bar on the frame being possibly too high...


Valerie Smith

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Cagey

I may very well be out to lunch.  I wasn't referring to how the thread was manufactured but more as to how it is wound on the cone.  Think of your garden hose when it is laying coiled on the driveway.  Pull the end of it straight out and doesn't it get twisted and in a knot.  That is my thinking but as I said I may be wrong.

 

Nigel


Brenda Wells - Green Millie. Sold November 2017
Nigel Wells - Ultimate 1 with Intellistitch & IQ.  Sold January 2019

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Nigel -  you are not out to lunch.  Unless you are dining with me at the local sushi bar LOL   there is definitely a twist or a coil shape when the thread comes off the magnifico and after it passes through the first top guide (with the piece of batting) .  As you said...like a hose that has been in its coil,  was pulled out and lays on the grass with that spiral shape in it.  The glide does not.      The thread has a spiral shape.  not the actual thread twist but the way the thread lays in the 'suspended' path.   It lays with a spiral twist.     I do imagine that in the thread path -  threading up up down, vs up down up vs down down down (etc)  does make a difference in the way the thread runs through your machine.   I really do.   

 

Doesn't this feel like the science of thread?   LOL  We should all become 'ologists',   

 

Cagey  -  I bought a bunch of threads when I first started out -  Superior, Glide, Aurifil, Metro and Wonderfil.    I do not carry a wide array of threads to torture myself, but as a way to learn my tension,  to become knowledgeable of my machine and what works.      When I get a customer that asks for a certain type of thread (rare), then I am comfortable to use it - as I am comfortable in troubleshooting tension.    This one tension issue has been a repeated pain in the you know what, however, and I *think* I have it narrowed down to the specific type (Magnifico and Metro) how it comes off the bobbin.     Otherwise I rarely have tension issues.    

 

Anyone want to buy my Magnifico cones??  :D

 

It is just one of my quirks - I really need to learn this stuff, be an expert analyzer, whatever.    I've even solved a few cases here!!  LOL


Andrea  http://www.urbanquiltworks.com

Motha Stitcha on an apqs millennium

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Nigel:

 

Please do not take any of my comments as a personal attack on you.  I did not mean that in any way, shape, or form.  

 

 

I believe the idea of winding the thread through the 3 hole guide is to take the twist out of the thread.

I was simply trying to say that I do not believe that thread guides were designed to take twists out of thread. Sometimes comments are made about thread and other quilting issues that just do not hold true, but become old wive's tales.  

 

Just like when I first started practicing my free motion quilting on NICU quilts.  I was taught to stabilize the quilts by SID with monopoly  thread.  When I share this with my guild members, you would have thought I threw the baby out with the bathwater.  I was told by all at the meeting that you should never ever use monopoly thread on baby quilts.  After thinking about it, and measuring the breaking point of monopoly thread verses the cotton thread I quilted with, I e-mailed Dr. Thread (Bob) to ask him if it was dangerous to use invisible thread on baby quilts.  He replied that he knew of no dangers using monopoly on baby quilts.  He agreed with my breaking points of 2. 67 pounds monopoly, 5.97 pounds King Tut, and 3 pound long female hair, would cause no issues with babies that he could think of. 

 

Sheagatzi:

 

Well you have shown to me that I will not waste my money or time with Magnifico.  I will remember; KISS.

 

Cagey


May your threads be balanced, and your bobbin forever full….

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I too have struggled with this same tension issue and have as of yet to figure out what causes it. I went into Magna bobbins in a big way, but that did NOT solve the problem! In fact I am using up my stock, and then plan to go back to winding my own, as I feel I have the best luck with my own! Just saying.....

But I think the bigger question here is how fussy should we be?!

The longer I do this, the fussier I get. As was mentioned by others on this thread, our name is attached to our quilting and I want nothing to give me a bad name. I have become fussy to the point of OCD. Now I am wondering, have I become too fussy, or is there any such thing? We all say time is money, and fussy takes time.....

Like Andrea, I am wondering how fussy should we be?


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Cagey

No offense taken. We are all trying to help each other out and learn how to sort these problems.  I've never used Magnifico so I no ideas until Andrea mentioned the way it spooled off the cone.  The other thing you can try is turning the cone upside down and then it will spool in the opposite direction.  If someone tries this and it helps please let us all know.

 

Nigel


Brenda Wells - Green Millie. Sold November 2017
Nigel Wells - Ultimate 1 with Intellistitch & IQ.  Sold January 2019

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Just saying, I've used Magnifico and it reacted in my Millie very similar to Glide thread.  I had no issues, it worked beautifully. 

 

However, maybe on my next quilt it would react differently ..... ????

 

This is a great topic of discussion!


Pat C

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I love everyone's input into this thread.  You comments are all very valuable to me!

 

Cagey -  you are so knowledgeable on the science of the threads...amazing.

 

 Thank you.  Ardelle-   hearing your take on the magna glides really puts a spin on it all now, doesn't it LOL   thank a lot  (sarcasm) :P Good grief!!  Glad to hear that you're still learning the tweaks of the tension as well.  I think  the longer I do this, the more I pay very close attention to subtle changes in tension, sounds, etc.  Drives me nuts. 

 

Nigel - if I ever get a chance to just play (maybe summer?)  on my machine I am going to turn my cone upside down and see what that does.


Andrea  http://www.urbanquiltworks.com

Motha Stitcha on an apqs millennium

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me again -  I'm still researching this problem.  I did a bunch of searches on this forum - and one seems like it is similar to mine  'slip knots' 

 

If you look at the photo that i posted in the original post,  and enlarge it  -  it kind of looks like 2-3 crochet slip knots doesn't it?   because once in awhile, I would get just a single loop,  but sometimes, like in this example - 2-3 in a row. 

 

If this is an example, it could just be the twist of the thread, due to it coming off the spool in a different direction, as well as being a more slippery thread?  


Andrea  http://www.urbanquiltworks.com

Motha Stitcha on an apqs millennium

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