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Thread: ugh! Can't seem to get 1/4" seams right!

  1. #1
    Junior Member GMarie's Avatar
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    I bought a new sewing machine when my old one broke. It has a variable needle position so that I can move the needle to get a 1/4' seam rather than buying a 1/4" foot. However, I just finished sewing some 9 patch blocks for a quilt and instead of being 6 1/2 x 6 1/2 finished they are 6 1/4 x 6 1/4. Ugh!! Can anyone tell me what I am doing wrong? Is it the "scant 1/4 in" thing? It's not a huge deal with this quilt because there is a muslin square going in-between all the 9 patch squares, but for future reference I'd love your input... thanks!!

  2. #2
    DJ
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    Super Member DJ's Avatar
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    What kind of machine did you get? I set up my new Pfaff for what I thought they thought was a 1/4" seam and nearly gave up on my quilt before I realized their setting was wrong. Or maybe it was right for what they were doing, but it was definitely not a 1/4" seam. I changed the setting and checked the seam until I had it right. Very frustrating!

  3. #3
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    http://quiltville.com/quarterinch.shtml

    Try this, it helped me.

    DD

  4. #4
    Senior Member QuiltingTurtle's Avatar
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    I tried to set mine, but even with the needle all the way over it was still a tick over 1/4" So I experimented a little, and put a piece of tape exactly where the 1/4" line is. It's not pretty....but it's very accurate.


  5. #5
    Junior Member GMarie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by loves_2_quilt
    http://quiltville.com/quarterinch.shtml

    Try this, it helped me.

    DD
    Thanks, I will try this.

  6. #6
    Junior Member GMarie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ
    What kind of machine did you get? I set up my new Pfaff for what I thought they thought was a 1/4" seam and nearly gave up on my quilt before I realized their setting was wrong. Or maybe it was right for what they were doing, but it was definitely not a 1/4" seam. I changed the setting and checked the seam until I had it right. Very frustrating!
    It's a Brother. I just measured again and 1/4" is just under the edge of the foot when I put my needle all the way to the right position. I've been using the monogramming foot because it is open. Maybe I will try the foot the manual recommends for straight stitching and see if there is a difference. I could also put the needle all the way to the left position and use the 1/4" guide they have etched. (This would also avoid me having to re-set the needle every time I turn the machine on!) I still think I'm going to have to start sewing a scant 1/4" on everything though...

  7. #7
    Super Member thimblebug6000's Avatar
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    I have a Husqvarna Lily 540, nothing fancy, but it has a " setting, but if I sew like that by the time the thread etc. is taken into consideration, my measurements are out. I always click my needle over just the one notch & my blocks come out to the exact measurement (of course that's if I manage to sew a straight seam.....) I do have the " foot, but find it doesn't work well for me. If you piece with a fine thread 50 or 60 weight, your measurements may work out better, if you use a heavier weight 40 or 30 you'll find the thread takes up quite a bit of room, by the time you've pieced a whole block.

  8. #8

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    When I bought my BabyLock, I had the same trouble trying to find the 1/4" spot, too. The sales person sold me a foot. Then when I got home, I started reading the book called "Manual". In there, I found out there is a setting that is exactly 1/4" from the left side or right side of my foot. However, I cannot backstitch using this setting. The reverse just stitches in place three times. If all else fails now, I read the book. . . :lol: Irena in Oregon

  9. #9
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    Remember that accurate cutting and good pressing also affect the size of the finished block. Your problem may be a combination of those things!

  10. #10
    Community Manager PatriceJ's Avatar
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    EUREKA!!!!!!!!!

    http://www.sewingmachinesplus.com/P60498.php

    just tried it for the first time. i just had to adjust my needle position to find the center of the foot (which is because of the machine, not the foot. i always have to do that). it's super-easy to see whether or not your edge is lined up with the foot.

    i even tested it for ditch-stitching on a sample sandwich. dead-center. if i didn't know where the stitching was, i wouldn't know where the stitching was! it isn't a "proper" quilting foot; i had to pull gently from the back to keep it moving smoothly; but once i got the hang of it i was amazed.
    Attached Images Attached Images



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