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Thread: Longarm quilting question

  1. #1
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    Longarm quilting question

    When you load your quilt on your machine do you always secure the quilt top to the roller or do you let it flow like the batting and baste top and sides as you go along?

  2. #2
    Super Member kathdavis's Avatar
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    Interested in this answer.
    Kathleen

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  3. #3
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    I never secure the quilt top to the roller. I always pin the backing to the rollers ( the take up roller and the bottom backing roller), lay the batting on top of the backing with the edge of the batting even with the edge of the roller. Then I come down on the batting about one and one-half inch and run a basting stitch across the batting to hold it in place on the backing. This basting stich is done with the channel lock on to give a true straight line of stitching. I then lay the quilt's top edge along the basting stitches just mentioneed and baste it in place. This way allows me to quilt all the way off the edge of the quilt top without a chance of stitching my quilt top to the roller fabric. At this point I tuck the batting down in between backing and the bottom quilt top roller. I then pin the bottom of the quilt top to my bottom quilt top roller and roll the top onto the bottom roller until the sandwich is snug and ready to quilt. I baste the sides as I quilt and roll the sandwich onto the takeup roller.

  4. #4
    Junior Member ljfox's Avatar
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    I baste the quilt top and the batting on the top only before I start to longarm it. The bottom of the quilt top is on one of the rollers so that I can tighten it as appropriate. I was told when I started longarming to baste the sides before quilting but this has caused more problems for me so I don't do that anymore. I just make sure it is straight with the sides every time I roll it and that works for me.

  5. #5
    Super Member MaryStoaks's Avatar
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    I float the top and baste the edges with each advance/roll-up of the quilt. This works best for me.
    Mary

  6. #6
    Senior Member crashnquilt's Avatar
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    It depends on the actual top if I float or secure it. If the top is very simple with few seams, I will usually secure to a roller. If the top has a lot of piecing I float the top. By floating the top, IF there is any fullness in the blocks, floating the top allows me to work it out. I RARELY baste the sides mostly because of working out fullness. I do stitch in the ditch around the blocks on most all quilts.
    Crashnquilt


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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobbielinks View Post
    I never secure the quilt top to the roller. I always pin the backing to the rollers ( the take up roller and the bottom backing roller), lay the batting on top of the backing with the edge of the batting even with the edge of the roller. Then I come down on the batting about one and one-half inch and run a basting stitch across the batting to hold it in place on the backing. This basting stich is done with the channel lock on to give a true straight line of stitching. I then lay the quilt's top edge along the basting stitches just mentioneed and baste it in place. This way allows me to quilt all the way off the edge of the quilt top without a chance of stitching my quilt top to the roller fabric. At this point I tuck the batting down in between backing and the bottom quilt top roller. I then pin the bottom of the quilt top to my bottom quilt top roller and roll the top onto the bottom roller until the sandwich is snug and ready to quilt. I baste the sides as I quilt and roll the sandwich onto the takeup roller.
    This is exactly what I do. Lately I have also been smoothing the batting over the backing all the way to the bottom and securing the batting along my Leadergrips (leave any extra batting length just loose there) with flat head flower pins, head to toe, the way I used to pin on the backing and quilt top before I got the leadergrips. After doing that, I roll the backing/batting combo up onto the bottom roller and proceed putting on the quilt top as described above. I have found my batting stays nice and smooth throughout the quilting and I no longer have to fiddle with it, which can cause a stretched area, and I have no worries about getting a fold in it. Works for me!

  8. #8
    Power Poster dunster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bobbielinks View Post
    I never secure the quilt top to the roller. I always pin the backing to the rollers ( the take up roller and the bottom backing roller), lay the batting on top of the backing with the edge of the batting even with the edge of the roller. Then I come down on the batting about one and one-half inch and run a basting stitch across the batting to hold it in place on the backing. This basting stich is done with the channel lock on to give a true straight line of stitching. I then lay the quilt's top edge along the basting stitches just mentioneed and baste it in place. This way allows me to quilt all the way off the edge of the quilt top without a chance of stitching my quilt top to the roller fabric. At this point I tuck the batting down in between backing and the bottom quilt top roller. I then pin the bottom of the quilt top to my bottom quilt top roller and roll the top onto the bottom roller until the sandwich is snug and ready to quilt. I baste the sides as I quilt and roll the sandwich onto the takeup roller.
    You said that you never secure the quilt top to the roller, but later you say that you pin the bottom of the quilt top to the bottom quilt top roller. So what you mean is that you never secure the TOP of the quilt top to the roller.

    I jumped to the same conclusion when I first read the question, that the OP was asking about the top of the quilt top, but after reading the question again I think she is asking about the bottom.

    One thing I've learned about longarming is that - at least for most of us - there's no such thing as 'always' or 'never'. For almost any operation, the answer is 'usually' or 'sometimes'.

    I 'usually' pin the bottom of the quilt top to the roller, but not 'always'. Sometimes I let the whole quilt top float, but if it's a large quilt I usually secure it to the roller.

  9. #9
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    I have also learned that the following words should be used with caution and/or awareness:

    always
    never
    all
    none
    everybody/everyone
    nobody/no one

    It seems like getting the quilt parts lined up and attached is one of the most crucial steps in a successful longarmed quilting project.

  10. #10
    Super Member feline fanatic's Avatar
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    So far if the quilt is larger than say about 50" square, I will pin the top's bottom to the bottom roller. Anything smaller I have floated and when I did the round table topper that was 60" round I floated it but I did baste around the peremeter the area of the quilt that was exposed for quilting, the rest I just let hang. I can tell you I was saying a lot of prayers when I got to the bottom of that round quilt hoping I wasn't going to end up with a big old pleat. But it laid nice and flat before I started quilting it and stayed nice and flat for me.

    I do tend to baste the sides as I advance. It is rare that I don't. Sometimes I do a very loose baste like 1 stitch per inch, other times I just do my normal quilting stitch down the sides as I advance.

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