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Thread: First try at FMQ

  1. #11
    Super Member Monika's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Sacramento, CA
    Do you know what weight it is? I have never used that brand so I do know. I know that if I use a 30wt (which is my favorite) I go up to a 100. If my thread is a 40wt, I use a 90. I am no expert mind you. This is just what works for me.

  2. #12
    Super Member amyjo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    North Dakota
    Blog Entries
    Try a different brand of thread and see if that makes a difference. Sometimes the C & C doesn't work like it should for FMQ.

  3. #13
    Super Member JulieR's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Emmitsburg, MD
    Two things...
    First, are your practice pieces the same weight as your quilt? Are you practicing with the same batting and thread? If not, it could still be a tension issue.

    Otherwise, try slowing down! If I move the quilt (my hands) too quickly through a curve I get nests on the back. So I chant it like a mantra: "Slow. Slow." Seems to help me a lot.

    Good luck!

    PS - C&C might indeed be the problem. However, my machine loves C&C and HATES Aurifil. Experiment!

  4. #14
    Super Member Knitette's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    The Granite City, Scotland
    Sounds like a tension problem IMO if you've done all the usual - changed your needle, thread, re-threaded top and bottom and are keeping an even speed (particularly on turns) and the weight not dragging anywhere.

    I was taught that if the problem is on the bottom it's your top tension - similarly if it's on top, it's your bottom tension. Good luck!
    Lang may yer lum reek. (I'm a knitter - hence - 'Knit-ette'. Confuses a lot of people!)

  5. #15
    Senior Member lisalisa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Queen of California Baby
    Make sure the presser foot is down. Seems silly, but it's not always obvious and is easy to forget about. Also make sure the bobbin tension isn't too lose. Often it just pops out of the bobbin hole but still gets fed through anyway with no tension, sewing a mess in the process. As you keep practicing, you'll be able to hear when your machine has one of these hiccups and be better able to deal with it.

    Don't give up!
    We couldn't all be cowboys, so some of us are clowns.

  6. #16
    Senior Member mommessy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    My best results are with an embroidery needle. I also have good luck with polyester thread. Goes against my cotton roots, but oh, well! Whatever works!

  7. #17
    Senior Member Kehoeta's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Greenbush, MI
    I had the same problem... Finally figured out that I wasn't supporting the quilt enough and I needed to slow down just a bit to let the machine do its thing. Be patient, keep going... Once you master this - you will be glad you did.
    I got fabric.... Now I need time .

  8. #18
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    Dec 2010
    Blog Entries
    Is it everywhere or just on the curves? If it's just on the curves, you are going too fast! Also I agree with the posters who suggested better support of the quilt.
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
    Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

  9. #19
    Senior Member patti p's Avatar
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    Oct 2012
    Lake Isabella,calif
    Blog Entries
    Ok i tried a different needle, 90/14 and my thread is a 30 weight i managed to do almost a whole row before i got a snaging mess. i can hear when it happens so it seems like the bobbin is doing a spin. my quilt top is supported and i slowed down my machine, i can see on some of the curves i have little eyelashes. i am still waiting on the bobbin washers i hope that helps.
    Patti P
    Enjoy the creative process

  10. #20
    Super Member CorgiNole's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Chapel Hill
    Quote Originally Posted by patti p View Post
    Hi there I just did a Jelly roll race in some pastels and thought I would give a go on some free motion this is my first time, I have practiced on some fat quarters and all seemed to go fine , so when I tried it on this quilt top I am getting a lot of bird nests on the back, where I have to stop and cut it out and re thread,bobbin, top all of it. I have tried to change the needle, I have the same thread in the top and bottom, I have cleaned the machine (I have a singer h74) fairly new, I manage to go about a foot or so and it will mess up AGAIN! I am getting frustrated, I switched from a plastic bobbin to metal, no change. I just ordered some bobbin washers, I hope that will do the trick? Does ANYONE have any other advice I could try.? It sews like a dream while piecing. It only does this while FMQ,
    Are your bobbins the correct size for your machine. You would be amazed by a few millimeters difference. I made the mistake of thinking all Singer Bobbins were made alike with one of my machines. Wow, the birdsnests were incredible to behold -as was the mess inside the bobbin case.

    I've also found that the difference in weight of a sample piece versus the entire quilt really changes the dynamic of moving the quilt around as well as highlights tension issues.

    Cheers, K

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