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Thread: Trouble with 1/4 inch seam - It wants to pull away.

  1. #1
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    Trouble with 1/4 inch seam - It wants to pull away.

    I think I might know what the problem is, however I would like advice/suggestions in case i am wrong.

    I have been fighting with trying to get a 1/4" seam. I have even bought the "sewer's Edge" purple guide, I have a 1/4" foot and I have also used painters tape. One of the issues I have with the tape and edge is that I have a top loading bobbin so it is really a pain to have to reposition everything (along with the fact that there is a slight wiggle on the bobbin cover) when I change the bobbin---so any helpful tips on that irritation would also be appreciated.

    Anyways --- the real problem/reason for this post....I can not seem to get a good 1/4" seam. What happens is that just as it goes under the foot it begins to pull towards the outside, therefore giving me less than 1/4" seam (and not in a good way like a Scant 1/4"--its much more). I am not a speed demon, however I am having to slow extremely slow just to try and keep this "pulling/sliding" from happening. I was wondering if it is because I need to support my fabric better in front/beside/ and behind the sewing arm?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Sally J's Avatar
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    Sounds like you have a problem with your machine. You comment that it "pulls towards the outside"and "slight wiggle on the bobbin cover". I'd have your machine checked.

  3. #3
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    Machine just came back from annual check up/cleaning so im reluctant to think that especially since everything seems the same as before (this is the first time I have used this machine to piece, I usually garmet sew on it). The pull is slight. Aftersewing four strips together, I am off by 1/16th of an inch. The cover has always had movement, even my new BL Esante has the same amount of movement on the little slide that covers the bobbin case (movement is like 1/32 of an inch, not much but makes it hard to attach anything to it). Main complaint about the slide cover is that it has to be removed to replace the bobbin so anything you place over it has to come off to put in a new bobbin, and then its time to "find" my 1/4" spot again. Maybe its just me and I should stick to my garmet sewing.
    Last edited by ZugZug; 06-14-2012 at 04:19 PM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member DeneK's Avatar
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    Some sewing machines do make it easier to get a 1/4" seam and others make it harder... I thought it was me until I got a new machine and found that my new one just "likes" to sew straight and I don't get the pulling to the inside or outside. My old one was impossible. I have a 1/4" foot with the flange --- the material rides alongside the flange to keep the seam straight. BUT my machine does not have an adjustable needle position so while I get a great 1/4" seam, I can't get the scant 1/4" to save my life.

  5. #5
    Super Member virtualbernie's Avatar
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    I think you just need practice guiding the fabric. Try guiding with one hand (right hand).
    Bernie

  6. #6
    Super Member Scissor Queen's Avatar
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    It sounds like your fabric is too far to the left and is off the right side feed dog. I had a machine that was nearly impossible to get a quarter inch seam on because of that.

  7. #7
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    I sew everything with a walking foot. And 1/4 in. Seam iS not the holy Grail. Keep a consistent seam, pay attention to straight of grain, and always square up the block when pieced. Everything will fit together.

  8. #8
    Super Member dakotamaid's Avatar
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    All good ideas for checking. I would also check the pressure on your foot. I too use my walking foot alot in piecing.
    Have a great day sewing and remember to "not sweat the small stuff"!!



  9. #9
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    I find what helps me most in guiding fabric is to have my left hand on my fabric and my left index finger just at the left edge of my foot. Seems to keep the fabric from 'slipping' as much. If I just try to guide the bulk of the fabric I'm sewing without my index finger next to the foot it slips quite a bit more.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Pat M.'s Avatar
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    If you have a machine that has a needle that can be shifted around, move it to the 1/4" site. I measure from the right side of the foot to the needle and then move the needle to where the 1/4" would be. Also, do you have any lined 3X5" cards? The lines are 1/4" apart and I use them for measuring where the 1/4" is. Put you needle on one of the lines and look at where you sewing should be.

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