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Thread: Question about thread tension

  1. #1
    Senior Member Brazen's Avatar
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    At least, I think it's a thread tension question. LOL! I have a Janome Memory Craft 4800. I have never had a problem with it until a week or two ago. I need to solve this FAST because Christmas gifts that need to be sent across country are waiting to be finished! LOL Ack!

    I put a spool of goldenrod thread on top, and a bobbin of kelly green thread down below.

    When I sew, the kelly green comes up from the bottom on every stitch. It appears as little dots, or "periods", in between each goldenrod stitch.

    I have always sewn with the tension dial set on AUTO. So I started testing it on various numbers, and me changing that does NOTHING to how the stitching appears on the fabric. I shortened and lengthened the stitch length, and that didn't change anything either!

    Have any of you had this problem and know what the fix is?? I would SO appreciate any help!! :)

    Thank you!

  2. #2
    deerviewquilting's Avatar
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    Note: I don't have a Janome... But on my longarm, I would back off the top tension, but you say that is not working?
    Have you completely rethreaded the machine? Sometime the thread may get caught on something, maybe not completely seated in the tension disc or hanging up on a thread guide. Do you have one of those thread guide with multiple holes? Like on my Juki, I have a three hole thread guide. I loop it through the first and last, skipping the middle. Maybe just go through one to loosen the tension.
    If the thread path is OK. Then maybe you need to adjust the bobbin tension on the bobbin case. The set screw that holds the tension bar that the thread goes under. tighten it clockwise very slightly, like in hourly increments.
    I hope this help.
    Another thing would be using a loftier batting to hide the tension.

  3. #3
    Super Member bebe's Avatar
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    http://www.quiltingboard.com/posts/list/14456.page

    See thread and I have put a video about tension problems!!!!!

    Hope it helps :wink:

  4. #4
    Super Member twistedstitcher's Avatar
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    Are you freemotion quilting or straight stitching? I have the same machine and have never had to adjust the tension when quilting. When I have problems like you've mentioned it's either because something isn't threaded quite right or because there's a build up of lint and crud under the bobbin case. Try rethreading, and take the throat plate off, remove the bobbin case and clean out anything that's built up under there. It's amazing what a difference that can make! Good Luck!

  5. #5
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    if you're having the problem while piecing, the pinholes won't matter. your seams will look just fine. if you're at the quilting phase ...

    i've had my janome (different model, but still an MC) less than two months, so cannot claim to be an expert with it.
    there are so many factors: weight of the fabric, loft of the batting, the thread, the needle size ... my freemotion stinks anyway, but finding the right combination of speeds of the machine itself and moving the fabric around seem to make more of a difference than fiddling with the settings.

    in straight-stitch quilting, what i've noticed so far is that it seems to prefer lightweight thread in the bobbin ... 50wt or 60wt. (which may not help you at all, i know and i'm sorry, since you already have the thread at whatever weight it is.)

    sharp needles of the right size for the top thread and the right bobbin size are a "must" (which really ticks me off because quilting really wears out a needle fast.) i practice on fat quarters or scraps of fabric the same weights and batting of the same loft until i get as close as i can. then i cross my fingers and pray that any remaining pinholes will disappear in the wash. :lol:

    i still haven't figured out how to get rid of the pinholes when i use the embroidery mode to put down quilting designs. if i get rid of them on top, they show up on the back. grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. i guess another year or so of practice will reveal that secret. in the meantime, i've learned to pick a backing fabric that goes well with the color thread i plan to use on top so i can have the same thread in the bobbin.

    how's that for a whole lot of what may not help? :?

  6. #6
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    I have exactly the same problem on my machine(Singer 8606) I will try de-linting it. It was stored for a few years so there is a lot of buil-up. Thanks!

  7. #7
    Senior Member Brazen's Avatar
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    Patrice, I *am* at the quilting phase, which is the problem! LOL I'm using the same fabrics and the same 100% cotton batting that I ALWAYS use. Same exact threads. Sooooo, I will remove the throat plate and see what all's built up under there! I'm embarassed to say that it's never been done on my poor machine, so I'll bet it'll be a lot happier when I've done it!!

    Thank you ALL so much for your advice and insight!! Every day I say to myself, "THAT's why I love this forum so much!"... for so many reasons. :D

  8. #8
    Senior Member Brazen's Avatar
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    Ok, just a quick update. I'm more embarassed than I thought I would be!! I took that silver plate off and took out the bobbin casing... and there was probably a pound or two of hard-packed lint in there. OOPS!

    I'm on my way to work, so it'll be tomorrow before I find out how this de-linting worked as far as my quilting/thread tension problem goes. But my machine MUST be happier!!!

  9. #9
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    i wondered why i kept hearing loud moans and wheezing coming from your house. poor machine. :lol:

  10. #10
    Senior Member Brazen's Avatar
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    Well, unfortunately, the big lint clean out didn't solve the quilting problem. I can still see the bottom bobbin thread on top of my quilt. :( Soooo... at some point there, I've got to watch bebe's video and see if I can fix things that way.

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