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  #1  
March 31st, 2011, 01:12 PM
*~~Shannon~~*'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Washington State
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Just a vent, but I'm super frustrated with my sewing machine today. Looks like we're due for a service. Once every few years, it just kinda wigs out and I can't sew anything. It will miss stitches, jam, and generally not work well. Of course, I'm in the middle of a massive sewing pile. Usually we build to this point gradually and I know it's coming.

Today, out of nowhere, I get a diaper about 80% done and it's just done. Every time I try again, 2 stitches, jam. Clean it out, reset everything, 2 stitches, jam. And now, I've got a 4 inch section of PUL that looks like Swiss cheese. I actually get the baby asleep without being held and DS1 is content playing alone and all I can get done is making a mess.

It's a 35 year old Kenmore. She's a little rough around the edges, but I can't bear to part with her. Once every 3 or 4 years, I end up spending about $50 on servicing. This was my mom's. She gave it to me about 8 years ago when she bought a new one. Last year, she had to buy a new one again because that one died. Mine is still kicking, she's just testy.
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  #2  
March 31st, 2011, 02:14 PM
greenchild's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Location: MN
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I hate that when that happens!!! And don't you know, it's ALWAYS in the middle of a big project!!

you are lucky to get a servicing for $50!!!! Here, it is $90 minimum. Mine is 10???? years old or so and occasionally it does the same thing. Just jams and misses stitches, becomes a major PITA until I have it serviced.

Right now the tension isn't working correctly - I mean, it works fine once I adjusted it, but it is set really high for the needle thread and it shouldn't need to be that way, it never did before. And the bobbin winder tension isn't working right either, I have to keep tension on the thread between my fingers or it winds way too loose. But $90 to fix that . . . I can work around it for now. *sigh*
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  #3  
March 31st, 2011, 02:33 PM
*~~Shannon~~*'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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The only reason mine is so cheap is because mine is so old, it's crazy simple to work on. There are only three settings on the whole machine: stitch width, stitch length and tension. That's it. Not a single specialty stitch, no button holes, no automatic theader, nothing.

One of these days, I should find out if I can just service it myself. It doesn't seem like it can be that hard.
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  #4  
March 31st, 2011, 03:11 PM
greenchild's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I think all they really do it disassemble, clean & oil it, but IDK how they set the tension.
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  #5  
March 31st, 2011, 03:36 PM
*~~Shannon~~*'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I think it needs a new belt. I think that's where the missed stitches are happening, but I don't really know.
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  #6  
March 31st, 2011, 03:38 PM
SuJo's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Sometimes stitch issues have to do with a hook in the bobbin area, when it wears down it's not going to catch the thread properly to lock it in place. If you have an older machine that could be the case.
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  #7  
March 31st, 2011, 03:47 PM
*~~Shannon~~*'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Hmm... that makes sense. I'll have to look into that.
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  #8  
March 31st, 2011, 07:26 PM
greenchild's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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I think I count myself lucky to know how to brush the lint out every now and then!
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  #9  
March 31st, 2011, 10:30 PM
*~~Shannon~~*'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Well, I opened it all up tonight, dusted and oiled everything, changed the needle and thread. I was just about to test it out and E woke up. I've never opened the main case before and it was dirtier than I expected. Hopefully that's enough to keep us going for a while.
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  #10  
April 6th, 2011, 01:42 PM
*~~Shannon~~*'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Good news is that I figured out what's wrong, the bad news is that I have no clue how to fix it.

I realized the needle was bent, so I changed it. A few minutes later, the next one is bent. I ended up going through 4 needles. I'm not sure what the issue is. They were all brand new. I normally use ball point needles for PUL but switched to see if that was the issue. They all bent.
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  #11  
April 7th, 2011, 08:52 AM
greenchild's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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it must be hitting something I don't know how to fix that either.
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  #12  
April 7th, 2011, 09:07 AM
SuJo's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Check the plate where the feed dogs are. Is it exactly where it needs to be? Can you indentions on the metal from where the needle is striking it?

Does your bobbin go into the machine underneath the needle, with a door that opens in the front? If so, remove the bobbin and slowly turn the hand wheel while watching the needle move up and down-can you see where it is making contact with something?

I used to have this problem with my old singer, I bought a new plate and that fixed it for the most part. It was missing and striking the plate so often it eventually cracked the metal

Good news is, the part isn't too expensive if you have time to wait on it. Now, if you're in the middle of sewing an entire show like I was...
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  #13  
April 7th, 2011, 10:18 AM
*~~Shannon~~*'s Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Yeah, the next time I can find a free few minutes (ha!) I need to figure what it's hitting, but at least I have a starting point now. Before, I was just blindly cleaning things hoping that would help.
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  #14  
April 7th, 2011, 12:22 PM
SuJo's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Hey--all that cleaning will probably make it way easier to see what's going on

I was serging inserts the other day, and ran out of thread. I opened the front to rethread it and could not even see the metal hooks. It was so full of fleece dust, it looked like a blizzard!
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