Machine adjustments: need help, Joe's at work

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Machine adjustments: need help, Joe's at work

New postby kjh9835 on Sun Nov 20, 2011 1:04 pm

Yes, I should know all this stuff, some I do, some I don't. Joe comes to my rescue most of the time but he is not available right now and I really want to work on my dress.

Singer 401A, sewing crepe back satin. We've been messing around with adjustments when I was quilting and now I don't know what the problem is.

I started to practice on the satin before I actually stitched the dress. Good thing I did. The top stitches look fine, smooth and even. The underside has puckers thus the seam has puckers. They are not really bad but def. noticeable. I am using the straight stitch throat plate with the general purpose foot. I also have the general purpose throat plate that I usually use but changed it last week when I was making something else and Joe said to change it. I also have a walking foot but do not like to use it.

We adjusted the pressure of the foot onto the fabric with the thumb screw on the top left of the machine. That may be the issue now or it may be something else. My needle tension does not stay "put" and I have to watch it closely or it goes to zero instead of whatever I set it on. Right now it's on 1.5 which is what I normally use. We don't usually have to adjust the bobbin tension. I've been playing around with it for an hour waiting on Joe to call me when he gets a minute. Nothing I've done seems to help.

Any suggestions?

Kathy
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Re: Machine adjustments: need help, Joe's at work

New postby lendube on Sun Nov 20, 2011 1:20 pm

Kathy, I have a 401A but it's not my main machine. I only use it for heavy duty stuff usually. I'd say try a different needle for starters, smaller perhaps. There could be a burr on the point. Sounds like a tension issue though. Try other fabrics and see what it does.
Lennie

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Re: Machine adjustments: need help, Joe's at work

New postby MartySews2 on Sun Nov 20, 2011 2:40 pm

Kathy, one of the rules of thumb is if the bobbin thread is messing up, the top tension needs adjusting. It seems as if your top tension needs to be tightened. If the top thread is messing up, then the bobbin tension needs adjusting. Tightening your foot pressure could cause some puckering of your fabric as it is not able to glide easily across the feed dogs. Be sure that your feed dogs are up. Your needle thread tension should be set around 4 or 5. There is a PDF manual on the ISMAC site that is a free download.http://www.ismacs.net/singer_sewing_mac ... achine.pdf Be sure that you're using a new needle about a size 11 for your fabric. I hope this helps.
Marty ;)
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Re: Machine adjustments: need help, Joe's at work

New postby sewingmom on Sun Nov 20, 2011 2:45 pm

If I remember right, The last time I asked about sewing on satin, Marty also recommended a microtex needle. I didn't have a single pucker when I followed her instructions. I hope this helps.
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Re: Machine adjustments: need help, Joe's at work

New postby kjh9835 on Sun Nov 20, 2011 4:30 pm

I have a manual for a 401 which is basically the same machine. Its a new needle, size 11 but not Microtex which is what I used last time for the wedding dresses. I can't find those and didn't remember to buy them the other day. I've messed with the tensions and put in another new needle, talked to Joe quickly but he couldn't help as he is swamped at work.

He said he'd clean up and oil my other 401A (my original machine) tomorrow and put it back in the cabinet. Then he will adjust this one (the one I bought a few months ago) and get it in tip top shape (it has a few other issues too). We are also getting back my 404 that is at my MIL house since she's never used it since I loaned it to her and she's in a "clear it out" mood.

Oh well, I've supervised dd16 who shampoo'd the carpet (I had to redo a few areas), done the laundry, cleaned the bathroom and got stuff out for supper. I still have until Dec 10 and am off tomorrow, the dress can wait.

kathy
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Re: Machine adjustments: need help, Joe's at work

New postby sewingmom on Sun Nov 20, 2011 5:26 pm

Kathy, I hope it is a simple fix.
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Re: Machine adjustments: need help, Joe's at work

New postby kjh9835 on Sun Nov 20, 2011 9:09 pm

Too much tension even though it's on zero. I tightened it up and loosened it back down, nothing changed so he'll have to doctor it up for me. He's going to look at it tomorrow so maybe I can finish the dress after I get back from town. I'm not going to get him up early since he's worked 12 hr shifts all week, it can wait at least til I get home :)

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