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Thread: What causes birds nests on quilt back? (picture included)

  1. #1
    Super Member Rachelcb80's Avatar
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    At the moment I'm cussing my new machine and going through the, "I hate you and I wish I never would have bought you" deal. First was the tension, next skipped stitches and now birds nests. I got the tension issues under control and am working on the skipped stitches but I have no clue what causes the occasional tangled mass of thread on the back side of my quilt. It's the top thread tangling on the bottom. Sometimes I hear it happen and can stop and pick but other times I don't know it's happened until I turn the quilt over. Very, very frustrating and slow moving quilting. :(

    I'm using King Tut on the top and Bottom Line in the bobbin. Cleaned and oiled the machine well before I started quilting and put a new needle in (Microtex 90/14). I've got hubby bringing me home some different needles tonight but other than that I don't know what else to try. Any and all suggestions more than appreciated!

    (Yes that's a safety pin in the picture on the front side but no I did not run over it with my foot to possibly cause the tangled thread)
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  2. #2
    Super Member ube quilting's Avatar
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    Well all the other stitching is great. I will be watching this post to learn myself, what causes this. Sorry I don't know now, burt will in a few minutes.
    peace.

  3. #3
    Super Member IrelandDragonQuilting's Avatar
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    Mine does it when I don't have the tension right or I go to fast for the machine, then I really have a mess!!

  4. #4
    Senior Member MamaHen's Avatar
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    First off, what machine are you talking about. A home machine or a longarm? I'm guess your home machine because of your needle type & size. Have your tried a topstitch needle? For King Tut a Topstitch #90/14 It has a slightly bigger eye and longer grove for your thread, so less tension all ways. Double check to make sure that your bobbin thread is in correctly, I have found that many of the ladies don't know that the thread should come off the bobbin counter clockwise. It looks like to me that your top tension may be off a bit. Make yourself a small quilt sandwich with the exact fabrics you are using now, and try again with needle change. Then try a different bobbin thread, maybe the difference in the King Tut and bottom line is too much. Just some suggestions. Good luck.

  5. #5
    Senior Member quilticing's Avatar
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    Bottom line is finer. You probably need to tighten the bobbin tension. If there seems to be a lot of slop in the bobbin case, they make washers to fill the space so the bobbin can't spin freely.

  6. #6
    Super Member Rachelcb80's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MamaHen
    First off, what machine are you talking about. A home machine or a longarm? I'm guess your home machine because of your needle type & size. Have your tried a topstitch needle? For King Tut a Topstitch #90/14 It has a slightly bigger eye and longer grove for your thread, so less tension all ways. Double check to make sure that your bobbin thread is in correctly, I have found that many of the ladies don't know that the thread should come off the bobbin counter clockwise. It looks like to me that your top tension may be off a bit. Make yourself a small quilt sandwich with the exact fabrics you are using now, and try again with needle change. Then try a different bobbin thread, maybe the difference in the King Tut and bottom line is too much. Just some suggestions. Good luck.
    My machine is a Bernina 820. There's only one way you can put the bobbin in as it's marked with sensors on one side that have to face out. You run the thread through the side slit and back to the thread cutter. I'm 99% certain it's threaded correctly.

    I have my husband bringing me home some topstitching needles in the 90/14 size. I had my top tension lowered some but it was pulling through a lot on the back. Lowered the bobbin tension and raised the top a little. Other than the birds nests it looks like the tension is okay. Should I try raising the top tension a little more still?

    I'll have to get through with the Bottom Line for now because I really don't want two different threads on the back. It's a plain white back and I'm worried two different threads, even though the same color, would be obvious. But maybe I'll put some regular cotton Mettler in the bobbin and see if that looks okay and acts better. I suppose a slight thread change is better than tangles all over.

  7. #7
    Super Member tutt's Avatar
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    I'm feeling your pain. I bought a 820 and mine is skipping stitches and eyelashing, but hoping I've resolved the eyelashing issue. I did a search on some Bernina groups and skipping stitches seems to be fairly common. I'll be watching to see what responses you get.

  8. #8
    skippitydodahquilts's Avatar
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    The only time I get a bird's nest is if I don't bring the bobbin thread up through the sandwich...this may be a dumb question, but you are bringing up the bobbin thread through the sandwich, right? ;)

  9. #9
    Super Member suebee's Avatar
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    Are you pulling your bobbin thread to the top? I think that coul d be it.

  10. #10

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    hold on to your top and bottom thread to start also

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