Frequently Asked Questions About Sewing Machine

Frequently Asked Questions About Sewing Machine

A faulty sewing machine not only affects your productivity but also affects the quality of your sewing. Whether you are a beginner in sewing or an expert in sewing, troubleshooting a sewing machine is one of the most important things you can learn.

Having a faulty sewing machine can be very frustrating, but it is more frustrating when you cannot solve it. Learning to troubleshoot a sewing machine not only saves you time but also helps you eliminate unnecessary trips to the repair workshop.

The sewing machine manual can come in handy in helping you solve some of the most basic sewing machine queries. You need to have your sewing machine manual with you; however, if you have misplaced or lost your manual, you can download a manual for your sewing machine from the sewing machine’s manufacturer’s website.

Nevertheless, having a user manual for your sewing machine does not guarantee that you will be able to solve all your sewing machine’s queries. Here are some of the frequently asked questions about sewing machines to help you troubleshoot and solve some of the most common problems with your sewing machine.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do you lift the Presser foot up and down?
Ans: To lift the presser foot up and down, you need the presser foot lifter. The pressure foot lifter is the level found in the pressure foot at the back or side of the sewing machine depending on the brand or model. You can lift the presser foot by lowering or raising the presser foot lifter.

2. Where do you place the spool of thread?
Ans: The spool of thread is placed on the spool pin. The spool pin is a pin-like object located on the uppermost part of a sewing machine and holds the spool thread.  

3. Which way do you turn the handwheel?
Ans: The handwheel is used to lower or raise the lever to engage or disengage the needle. The handwheel should always be turned towards you in a clockwise movement.  

4. How do you choose a sewing pattern?
Ans: The majority of commercial sewing patterns come with two different sets of measurements on the back of the envelope; the body measurements and the finished garment measurements. Some brands come with only the body measurements chart on the back of the envelope and the finished garment measurements printed on the pattern. The key to choosing a sewing pattern has the correct body measurements.

5. What sewing machine makes the best buttonholes?
Ans: There are so many sewing machines in the market that can be used to make buttonholes. However, when it comes to making the best buttonholes, the Viking (Platinum 770) and Bernina 440 makes the most consistent buttonholes. It is important to note that different sewing machines’ quality of buttonholes may vary depending on the fabric.

6. What sewing machine is best to study design?
Ans: When studying design, you need a versatile sewing machine that can help you grow and advance your skills at your own pace. The Brother Designio Series DZ2400 is one of the best sewing machines for people studying design. The sewing machine offers you enough features to start and finish any project, no matter how big or small it is.

7. What is batlock sewing machine?
Ans: There is no sewing machine called a batlock. The only sewing machine with a name closer to that is a bartack sewing machine. It is a specialized industrial machine for sewing butted, non-bulky seams such as a sturdy zig-zag tack on jeans belt loops.

8. How do you hem pants with a sewing machine?
Ans: To hem pants with a sewing machine, you will need to take the body measurements. After taking the measurements, mark the area you want to hem using chalk and fold the pants to the desired hem. Iron the crease and cut the pants using a ruler to guide the scissors. After cutting the pants, fold the pants inside out and fold the hem. Iron the hem and sew it. .  

9. What's the best sewing machine for making diaper covers?
Ans: Diaper covers do not require any complex stitches. Thus, any simple sewing machine can be ideal for sewing diaper covers. Nonetheless, the most effective sewing machines for sewing diaper covers are Janome, Bernina, Pfaff, and Viking sewing machines.

10. How do you troubleshoot a Singer Sewing Machine?
Ans: The first step of troubleshooting a singer machine is by identifying the problem. Some of the most common singer, sewing machine problem, is a jammed bobbin or using a wrong bobbin. To troubleshoot this problem, ensure you are using the right bobbin for your machine, and remember to keep the presser foot in the down position to prevent the thread from tangling. If the problem is more complex, you might consider calling an expert to check on the machine.

11. How do you thread a Janome sewing machine?
Ans: To load a Janome sewing machine, take the thread from the bobbin thread guide and place it at the top of the machine then run the thread down the line on the front of the machine and under and to the left and head back up the thread guide towards the take-up lever. Place the thread through the hole in the face of the take-up lever. Run the thread back down the same thread guideline you used until you get to the bottom of the sewing machine’s plastic casing. Slide the thread behind the thread guide. On top of the needle bar, you will see a hook to the left, slide the thread behind and use the automatic threader to put the thread through the needle’s eye or use your hand.

12. What is sewing machine oil?
Ans: Sewing machine oil is the oil applied on sewing machine parts to reduce friction and wear and tear, thus improving the performance of the machine.

13. What is sewing machine free arm?
Ans: Sewing machine free arm is a part of a sewing machine located at the bottom of the sewing machine sticking out from the main body and just past the needle and the feed dogs. The sewing machine free arm has a built-in bobbin race, feed dogs, and stitch plate. This makes it possible for you to sew one layer of fabric without touching anything.

14. What is sewing machine timing?
Ans: Sewing machine timing is the process of synchronizing the sewing machine parts to achieve even stitches on your fabric.

15. What is sewing stabilizer?
Ans: Sewing stabilizer is an object used to hold the fabric flat and rigid to make sewing quick and easy.

16. What is sewing floss?
Ans: Sewing floss is a quick and easy decorative sewing method where threads of different colors are used to complement the fabric.

17. What is sewing interfacing?
Ans: Sewing interfacing is a sewing technique that is used on the unseen side of the fabric to stiffen or add body to the fabric.

18. How can I improve my sewing abilities?
Ans: Sewing abilities vary from one person to the other depending on your experience in sewing. Your sewing abilities improve as you work on new and different sewing projects. To improve your abilities, you need to try our sewing patterns and improve your sewing skills.

19. What is the hardest part about learning to sew?
Ans: Different people have different learning abilities. Thus, the hardest part about sewing depends on an individual. However, most people find it hard to choose the right sewing pattern making it the most difficult part of learning how to sew.

20. What is the height of a sewing machine table?
Ans: The height of the sewing machine table is dependent on your height. There is, therefore, no ideal height for a sewing machine table since we all have different heights. The key thing when choosing a sewing table is ensuring that the sewing machine table keeps your work at elbow height and your wrists straight..  

21. What makes a good sewing machine for Denim?

For having a good sewing machine for Denim, you must consider various essential factors in your mind. You have to ensure that the sewing machine has a powerful motor to help you sew through the most rigid fabric like jeans with much ease. 

Besides, you may also ensure that the machine has a robust metal structure.

Since Jeans are a heavy material, it is crucial to choose a sewing machine with an extra high presser foot lift, which will help you handle jeans and multiple layers of fabrics with excellent ease.

Further, it would help if you had leveling buttons incorporated in the machine to adjust the presser foot according to the fabric. This would eventually help you work efficiently on the seams of the jeans without breaking the needles.

22. Which is the most appropriate sewing machine needle for Jeans?

You have to choose the needle based on the thickness of the material so that you are about to sew through and 90/14 is ideal for all material, and thicker Denim, you can use 100/16. Besides, there can be a little different in terms of quality from brand to brand. It would be best if you avoid needles below 90/14 as they can easily break off.

23. What is the cost of a good sewing machine for Denim?

A lot actually depends on your budget and the kind of functionalities you are looking for. It is never like you can’t have an affordable sewing machine, which is also pretty reliable for your work. You can find good sewing machines for jeans within $200 to $400 provided that you check out the specifications and the other factors really well before buying one.

24. What are some of the best sewing machines for Denim?

Even though there are many sewing machines for Denim available in the market, here are some of the sewing machines for jeans that are good in all aspects:

  • Singer 7258
  • Janome HD3000
  • Juki HZL-F600
  • Juki TL-2000Qi
  • Singer Quantum Stylist 9960
  • Janome 4120QDC
  • Singer Heavy Duty 4452
  • Toyota Super Jeans J34

25. How long can I expect a sewing machine to last?

The average durability for a sewing machine can be somewhere around five years, provided that you handle it with care and take proper care of its storage and maintenance. However, computerized machines tend to last longer, and some may even last up to 20 to 25 years.

25. How do we use the presser feet, and why are they of different types?

We need different presser feet for different purposes, so all presser feet are not the same. For example, we use standard feet with a walking foot for sewing through multiple layers of fabric.

You can also use an adjustable binding foot, especially for contrasting bindings around the fabric’s edge. In case you want to keep the fabric in line while you are sewing, you can use the quarter-inch foot.

27. Does making clothes need one to use a special thread?

The thread type has to do a lot with the kind of clothing you are up to sewing. You may need a more robust and thicker thread for sewing through heavy fabric than for sewing through the fabric as lightweight as linen or cotton.

Another way to look at this is by considering the stitch type, and for example, when you choose to topstitch, you would need a much smoother thread than seams.

28. What things do I need to consider for sewing jeans?

Jeans are heavyweight fabrics, and you would need to use a heavy-duty sewing machine only for sewing through Jeans. Besides, you must ensure that your sewing machine has a suitable foot to help you sew through thick fabrics with much ease.

One foot that is commonly used for sewing through Jeans is the general zig-zag foot. Further, you would need a button shank plate to attach the buttons, preventing uneven stitches.

29. What are some mistakes to avoid while making clothes?

Before you can start making clothes, it is essential to make yourselves of some of the common mistakes and their impact so that you don’t have to make the same mistakes.

Most new sewers tend to make one common mistake by using topstitching or folding right under an armhole or a neckline instead of adding a bias binding or facing. This eventually causes ripples and waviness, making it easy for others to guess that these clothes are homemade. On the contrary, when you add a bias binding or facing, this will accentuate the looks and quality to a large extent.

Another mistake that should be avoided at any cost is leaving the seams unfinished. Your clothes need to look neat inside and outside. When you leave the seams unfinished, the clothes will certainly not look that neat. Besides, with clothes with unfinished seams, you have the problem of cutting the extra thread every time you wear them, and at some point, you may also have a hole in the clothes.

Using an incorrect seam finish is as bad as leaving an unfinished seam as this will help people quickly know that the clothes are homemade. For example, if you are making Chiffon clothing, you must not use only French seam. 

30. What are the different types of sewing machine oils?

Sewing machine oils are usually available in mineral oil, synthetic oil, and natural oil. You should know about these oils and choose the right type of sewing machine oil for your use.

Mineral oil is Vaseline-based and the cheapest option in the market. It is safe to use and excellent for lubricating sewing machines. However, if it is not appropriately applied, then it may damage your machine.

Synthetic oil is expensive and ideal for lubricating plastic and steel parts of your sewing machine. It prevents oxidation and is not harmful to your machine if over-applied. Natural oil is made of ester oils, silicone, and jojoba oil. Compared to synthetic oil and mineral oil, natural oil offers poor performance.

31. Which is the best sewing machine oil?

According to the different oils’ performance, synthetic oil is the right choice for sewing machines, although it is expensive. If you can lubricate your machine correctly, then you can consider using mineral oil for better results. However, don’t use any oil that is not suitable for the sewing machine.

32. How to clean a sewing machine?

You will need to clean your sewing machine properly to ensure high performance. To clean your machine, first, you need to switch off the machine. Then you can use a clean cloth and brush and start cleaning the parts of the machine. 

You can also remove different parts of the machine, such as thread, throat plate, stitch plate, bobbin, etc. while cleaning. Further, you can refer to the user manual of the machine to get cleaning instructions.

33. How to apply oil on my sewing machine properly?

First, identify the moving parts of the sewing machine by rotating the handwheel slightly. Then take some sewing machine oil and apply it to all the moving parts. Now, allow the machine parts to soak the oil for some time. Now, using a clean cloth, you can remove the extra oil on the machine parts.

34. How frequently should a Sewing Machine be cleaned?

This depends on how you use the sewing machine. Further, the thread, machine speed, and the type of fabric you use determine when you should lubricate the machine.

If you frequently use the machine, it will generate more heat and friction and require frequent lubrication. On the other hand, it is recommended to lubricate the machine when you have changed three bobbins.

35. How to pick the right sewing machine oil from the market?

As mentioned above, sewing machine oils are of three types, and each type has some advantages and disadvantages. However, you can pick the right machine oil by considering your machine’s brand.

Usually, the sewing machines of different brands have different designs and come with different features. Therefore, you can check the maintenance instructions of the sewing machine and use the oil accordingly.

Generally, synthetic and mineral oils are mostly used to lubricate the sewing machines compared to natural oils for high performance.

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