Adjusting the thread tension in the sewing machine

What needs to be adjusted

Getting quality stitches is a must for any sewing machine. Depending on the fabric used and other characteristics of the project, the settings of the machine also change. There are electromechanical models of machines, which are adjusted with special regulators. Computer models combine electronic adjustment with mechanical.

Note that the complexity and duration of the setting depends on the design of each model and the type of its control panel. In the process of adjustment, check your actions against the recommendations given in the manual of each particular device, because the parameters of the machines may differ from each other.

Let’s look at what settings you need to adjust before you start sewing.

Stitch type, length and width

Such adjustments directly affect the quality of the finished product. The design of the device provides for different types of stitches that are used for different sewing techniques and fabrics. There are stitches for knitwear, blindstitching, decorative stitching, and edge stitching.

For coat fabrics or leather, the optimal length is 3-4 mm.

Zigzag width is also set depending on the type of material: a narrow zigzag is not appropriate for thick fabrics, as it can not qualitatively process them, and a wide zigzag can pull a thin material.

adjusting, thread, tension, sewing

Thread tension

The quality of stitching depends on the setting of the degree of tension of the working thread.

It must be even, without tension and sagging. The weave knot of upper and lower threads should be inside the fabric, not on its surface. You can see for yourself when you make a test stitch.

Regulate the upper thread with a special regulator. To adjust the bobbin thread resorted to only if previous manipulation did not yield the desired result. Adjusted by changing the screw position on the hook.

Everything is done in stages, always checking the results. Memorize the initial position of the device to return to the initial setting of the knot, if necessary.

Foot pressure

Presser foot pressure can be adjusted with the screw on top of the machine or with the knob on the left side of the machine.

This parameter varies depending on the type of fabric. Some models have automatic pressure adjustment.

Needle and hook interaction

If the distance between the hook spout and the needle is not correct, skipped loops may occur where they meet. The fact that a large gap will not give a loop and the stitch will be broken. To check the settings, proceed as follows:

  • Select straight stitch type.
  • Remove the needle plate and presser foot.
  • Lower the needle, and then raise it by 2 mm. The normal position is when the gap between the hook nose and the ear is no more than 0.25 mm, and the nose is 1-2 mm above the ear.
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If it is impossible to adjust this parameter, you will need to ask your handler.

How to sew knitwear with a twin needle

Sewing knitwear with a double needle will require a special approach. It is best to stick to the following recommendations:

  • In the settings of the machine to choose a straight stitch.
  • Select the stitch length depending on the elasticity of the knitwear.
  • Slightly reduce the tension of the thread to make the seam more flat.
  • It makes sense to set different settings and conduct tests on unnecessary elements of the fabric. Then select the most appropriate option.
  • Backstitching is not recommended. In this case there is an increased risk of thread tangling.
  • Stretching can be prevented by using water-soluble stabilizer tape or simply pushing the material under the presser foot with a tool.
  • A great solution is to use a special walking foot, which ensures an even feeding of the top layer of fabric.
  • Tightening of the fabric can be minimized by reducing the tension of the upper thread or by using an elastic adhesive material.
  • When sewing over difficult areas it may be advisable to use special slats which will prevent skipped stitches.

Adjustment after downtime

If the machine has not been used for a long time, the metal components should be cleaned and lubricated before adjusting. Remove thread and dust with a stiff brush. Special machine oil for sewing equipment is used to lubricate metal parts that are subject to friction. It is convenient to apply the grease with a medical syringe.

Sewing Machine Thread Tension. Updated

After the procedure, I run the machine at low speed without threads to spread the grease all over the mechanism, then do a test stitch.

General machine check

If when sewing you get uneven and ugly stitching, then you need to figure out what exactly is wrong here. The cause may be not in the tension, and it is better to exclude all extraneous factors at once. This applies to any type of machine, including Brother xl 5050. Some manufacturers, such as Pfaff, provide their devices with automatic adjustment, but it also sometimes fails.

  • Make sure that the sewing process is smooth and that there are no knocks, squeaks or other mechanical disturbances as the machine sews. It can be that the mechanism needs to be lubricated, and the stitching is spoiled by uneven running.
  • If the machine is new to you, then check by the manual, if the thread is correctly threaded. Just in case, it’s a good idea to pull everything out and tuck in again, following the illustrations in the manual exactly (they’re always there).
  • Check if the needle matches the thread thickness.
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A clear sign of a tension problem is when the upper and lower threads on the seam are crossed on one side or the other. Ideally, they should connect approximately in the middle, inside the fabric. This means that the tension is evenly distributed across the bobbin and top bobbin.

Once you’re sure you’ve got the situation figured out, you can move on to fixing the problem. Similar rules apply to the Singer Premium 9860, the Jeanne My Excel 1221, and various Brazier machines.

How to Adjust Sewing Machine Thread Tension

Properly setting the thread tension on the sewing machine is very important for creating an even thread tie on both sides of the fabric. Despite the importance of this setting, even professional seamstresses tend in some cases not to even touch the tension adjuster. Tuning may seem like a daunting task, but while understanding even the basics, it can be done by yourself on any model of sewing machine.

How to adjust the lower thread yourself

Incorrectly tucked thread is the most common cause of thread clumping when using a sewing machine. The first thing to do: Check that the threading is correct. This applies not only to the upper thread, but also to the lower thread. Re-tuck both according to the instructions of the machine and try working with the device again.

Also, the clump appears because the threads are unevenly stretched: the upper is adjusted with the correcting plates, and the distance between them is determined by using a switch that is installed on the body of the device. As for the lower thread, it is adjusted by the plates of the bobbin case. In order to adjust the tension, you will need to take a screwdriver, remove the foot and needle plate, and then the tool to turn the screw of the bobbin case to increase or decrease the tension of the thread.

If the lower thread does not hold the upper thread, and during the operation of the machine, it climbs up, then the stitches may look sloppy or tangle at all. In this case, it is necessary to increase the tension of the lower by shifting the plate. This is done by tightening the screw of the bobbin cap. After tightening the screw, you need to check the operation of the machine. If everything is fine, you can continue sewing.

Thread can form a tangle due to the incorrect location of the bobbin. To adjust everything, you need to use the manual for the device. When repairing the machine, you will hear the “click” of the shuttle.

If the tension is normal, but the sewing machine is not functioning well, it may be a matter of the device itself. It may be faulty. Then, in order to adjust its operation, you need to contact a master who knows how to repair sewing machines. Or replace the device with a new one. If it is a small defect on the hook, you need to remove the needle plate and visually assess what the thread is bumping. To do this, you need to spin the wheel of the lift lever, gently pull out the shuttle and look at it. If there is a burr, it should be removed with a scalpel or other sharp object. After removing the defect, put everything back and check the operation of the device.

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Adjusting the bobbin thread tension

Always start with the bobbin thread tension adjustment. To do this, wind the bobbin, insert it into the bobbin case. Grasp the end of the thread and release the bobbin case.

  • If the tension is good, the bobbin case will travel 3. 5 cm and brake smoothly.
  • If it flies without stopping to the table, the tension is very low.
  • If it will not fly at all, you need to loosen the tension.

Adjust the tension with the screw, which is located on the bobbin case. To do this, take a suitable screwdriver, twist the screw. Clockwise movements increase the tension.

Counterclockwise movements will loosen it. Here it should be noted that it is recommended to turn the screw in very small movements. After each twist, repeat the experience with hanging the hook.

When you have a good tension, you need to make a test stitch. According to its results proceed to the adjustment of the upper thread.

Sewing stitches: Adjusting size, thread tension and foot pressure

To get beautiful, strong, and smooth stitching, you can use a few settings.

A mandatory check

Before you start sewing, perform a test on the piece of fabric you will be using (not another) under the same conditions: with the same foot, with the same threads (for upper and lower threads), with the same needle and stitch, with the same number of fabric layers. If you are satisfied with the result, start sewing, otherwise make the necessary adjustments to get the desired stitch quality (see. other articles).

Take care of the knocking

The adjuster always knows how to get rid of the knocking. Sewers often encounter such a problem when working on a machine “Podolsk”. To do this, pull the flywheel axially away from the machine. In most cases the trick helps. Sometimes you have to disassemble the device. You need to unscrew the screw restrictor under the drive. To remove the flywheel. Also the bobbin and bushing. The master puts on a washer, which he can make himself. This trick helps to get rid of knocking for a long time.

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