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Thread: Back from quilters with tension issues

  1. #1
    Senior Member Missi's Avatar
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    Oh what do I do.

    I just got four quilts back from my long armer (sp?) and the tension on them is all off. One of them is horrible and I mentioned it to her when she dropped it off and she said with variegated thread she has that problem. Even the one with solid thread has issues. She has great turn around about a month so I can't complain there.

    Do I give her another chance, find someone else. I have seen other quilts she's done and they don't have issues.

    The back of the one that is really bad has a plaid pattern so the poor tension issues don't scream and a non-quilter wouldn't notice it. I will try and get pics posted this week.

  2. #2
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    no, not another chance. she doesn't seem concerned. she should give you your money back since you will most likely have to have them done over again. sorry for your problems.

  3. #3
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Find someone else!

  4. #4
    Super Member Annaquilts's Avatar
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    That is not acceptable. She is having problems and she is aware of it but doesn't seem to care.

  5. #5
    Super Member KathyAire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Missi
    Oh what do I do.

    I just got four quilts back from my long armer (sp?) and the tension on them is all off. One of them is horrible and I mentioned it to her when she dropped it off and she said with variegated thread she has that problem. She should have mentioned it to you, instead of you mentioning it to her. She knew it wasn't right. I do long arming, just for myself. I know when mine are not right.
    Whenever I screw something up, not necessarily quilting, anything, I can't wait to fix it. I would never do anything for someone else and pass it off as okay. I guess that's one reason I don't do customer quilting.


    Do I give her another chance, find someone else. I have seen other quilts she's done and they don't have issues. You gave her four chances by giving her four quilts.

    The back of the one that is really bad has a plaid pattern so the poor tension issues don't scream and a non-quilter wouldn't notice it. I will try and get pics posted this week.
    Do you suppose she is thinking of you as a 'non-quilter' and won't notice it? That's an insult right there.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Missi's Avatar
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    She knows I am a quilter. I am giving the one away with the bad tension issues. It is a baby quilt

  7. #7
    Super Member QuiltQtrs's Avatar
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    Totally unacceptable. Find another quilter!

  8. #8
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    To me this is just another longarmer who wants the money and thinks Oh no big deal, the stitching is just a little off, or there are only a few pleats, who cares. I would let her know you want it redone or your money back as it is not acceptable. The last longarmer I used had tension problems. So bad I had big loops on the back of the quilt. Her excuse was she changed bobbins and didn't think to check the back stitching. She never looked at the quilt after taking it off the machine. I paid a lot of money for the quilting and said I can take this quilt as it is to my guild meeting or you can redo it right. She took out every stitch and redone it because she had a pile of my guild members quilts to do and she knew all it would take was for me to take that quilt in to guild as it was and her business would be over. Don't be timid to say what you expect. People like her rely on women not to speak up and accept below par service. Their excuse is their problem not yours.

  9. #9
    Senior Member ljsunflower's Avatar
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    As was stated above, she knows when the tension isn't right. I spent 3 hours picking a quilt out when we looked at the back & saw AWFUL tension!
    Find someone else who actually cares what her work looks like.

  10. #10
    Super Member Quilter7x's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BellaBoo
    To me this is just another longarmer who wants the money and thinks Oh no big deal, the stitching is just a little off, or there are only a few pleats, who cares. I would let her know you want it redone or your money back as it is not acceptable. The last longarmer I used had tension problems. So bad I had big loops on the back of the quilt. Her excuse was she changed bobbins and didn't think to check the back stitching. She never looked at the quilt after taking it off the machine. I paid a lot of money for the quilting and said I can take this quilt as it is to my guild meeting or you can redo it right. She took out every stitch and redone it because she had a pile of my guild members quilts to do and she knew all it would take was for me to take that quilt in to guild as it was and her business would be over. Don't be timid to say what you expect. People like her rely on women not to speak up and accept below par service. Their excuse is their problem not yours.
    I competely agree with you Bella. If this is her business, she won't last long at all. If I did accept them (which I wouldn't), I would be bringing them to my guild meetings also - and one of the quilt guilds I belong to has over 80 members!

  11. #11
    BMP
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    I would fina another LA and I would also let her know you have and why !

  12. #12
    Moderator kathy's Avatar
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    if the thread is not tight to the quilt the baby can get fingers or toes caught, cut, circulation cut off! you'll do the rest of her customers a favor by insisting that she make it right, would you buy meat that smelled bad? or a tomatoe with the side mashed in?

  13. #13
    np3
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    Quote Originally Posted by BellaBoo
    To me this is just another longarmer who wants the money and thinks Oh no big deal, the stitching is just a little off, or there are only a few pleats, who cares. I would let her know you want it redone or your money back as it is not acceptable. The last longarmer I used had tension problems. So bad I had big loops on the back of the quilt. Her excuse was she changed bobbins and didn't think to check the back stitching. She never looked at the quilt after taking it off the machine. I paid a lot of money for the quilting and said I can take this quilt as it is to my guild meeting or you can redo it right. She took out every stitch and redone it because she had a pile of my guild members quilts to do and she knew all it would take was for me to take that quilt in to guild as it was and her business would be over. Don't be timid to say what you expect. People like her rely on women not to speak up and accept below par service. Their excuse is their problem not yours.
    Ditto!

  14. #14
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    I have to agree. When I pay good money I want a job well done. Find another long arm.

  15. #15
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    If she knows she has issues with that thread type she should not use it, or learn to make the adjustments. If she has been doing them long enough to know she has issues, she has been doing them long enough to know to fix it or let her customers know of the issues first and let them decide.

    I am a new longarmer in business to not only make money, but to especially to satisfy my customers I take great efforts to make sure things are right. I also have had issues with the variegated threads, but have learned to adjust the tension to make them work. I know the first quilt I did for practice was not the best, but it was practice and my first.

    I would find another longarmer who will take pride in her/his work and make sure the work is worthy of the work put into by the piecer, and to being used, abused, shown off and to have customers returning.

    Good luck. {{Hugs}}

    Phyllis
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  16. #16
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    I am a LA quilter and always check the stitching-front and back-with every bobbin used. To have 4 quilts with unacceptable stitching shows that your LA quilter doesn't care about her finished product or for some unknown reason thought you would not mind. Fortunately, most LA quilters are not like that-we know our reputation is in our stitches and customer satisfaction. You should not have accepted the less than quality stitching. It takes a long time to take out stitches but it must be done if there are errors. I would revisit with the quilter and go over what can be done. If nothing, then please don't use this person again.

  17. #17
    Senior Member crashnquilt's Avatar
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    Well, dang it! I was really hoping to not see complaints about a longarmer. Now in this situation, I do have to agree with the majority here. She did know that there were issues with the bobbin thread and I do agree she should have fixed the problem. Also, the baby quilt with tension issues, agreed you really need to double check the thread. Baby finger nails can get caught and rip so easy.

    The part of this story that absolutely FLOORS me is "She had changed bobbins and didn't think to look" part! WHAT!?! Given this scenario, I must be a paranoid longarmer. I check the backing every couple of blocks! Also, I listen to my machine and can pretty much hear if I have a bobbin problem and most experienced longarmers do the same.

    I, personally, will NOT use varigated thread in the bobbin. I just have way too many issues with it. Much easier to adjust top tension than bobbin tension. I know there are some out there that will say, "Oh, I've never had an issue with varigated threads in the bobbin." If that is the case, Kudos to you and I hope you will always have that kind of good luck. As for me, once bitten-twice shy.

    Varigated threads are nice, but I am about to the point of not using them AT ALL. I attended a seminar once that gave lots of good information about thread. No, it was not a Superior Threads seminar albeit Bob is very knowledgeable and Superior does not practice the same methods as some other thread companies. This person was a FORMER quality control inspector for a large thread company. She was "released" from her position because of "turning back" to much product. (basically fired for doing her job properly)

    She said that "multiple color" thread is actually a dye accident. Dye would come out concentrated in some areas and not others. To take advantage of this, the company would then RE DYE the thread in some areas to create more of a pattern. Some areas might be dyed as many as 5 or 6 times. This would cause the thread to have swollen and thin spots. Also, if you get thread breakage or shredding, look closely where the break happens. Most likely, it will be at a color change spot. Put the thread between your fingers and you can usually feel the color changes. Now, imagine that hitting the needle eye 10 times or so, something is going to give.

    NAYY with Superior Threads, but I do know they do not practice this method with their threads. Knock on wood, I've not had a problem with any multiple color thread from Superior. Too bad I can't say the same for other manufacturers.

    Back to the actual issue, I do agree that 1. The longarmer should make the corrections to your quilts and 2. Take your business elsewhere. If she is an experienced quilter, she ain't gonna get any better at it.

  18. #18
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Wow! I would not use her again since obviously her standards are not my standards.

  19. #19
    Super Member suebee's Avatar
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    I would assume from her reaction, that she doesnt take alot of pride in what she does. Find a new Longarmer!

  20. #20
    Super Member featherweight's Avatar
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    I certainly wouldn't use her again. You stated that you weren't pleased with the end product and she didn't seem to care. Give you business to someone that cares about her or his customers. I can't see her building a good business with that attitude.

  21. #21
    Super Member Candace's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crashnquilt
    Well, dang it! I was really hoping to not see complaints about a longarmer. Now in this situation, I do have to agree with the majority here. She did know that there were issues with the bobbin thread and I do agree she should have fixed the problem. Also, the baby quilt with tension issues, agreed you really need to double check the thread. Baby finger nails can get caught and rip so easy.

    The part of this story that absolutely FLOORS me is "She had changed bobbins and didn't think to look" part! WHAT!?! Given this scenario, I must be a paranoid longarmer. I check the backing every couple of blocks! Also, I listen to my machine and can pretty much hear if I have a bobbin problem and most experienced longarmers do the same.

    I, personally, will NOT use varigated thread in the bobbin. I just have way too many issues with it. Much easier to adjust top tension than bobbin tension. I know there are some out there that will say, "Oh, I've never had an issue with varigated threads in the bobbin." If that is the case, Kudos to you and I hope you will always have that kind of good luck. As for me, once bitten-twice shy.

    Varigated threads are nice, but I am about to the point of not using them AT ALL. I attended a seminar once that gave lots of good information about thread. No, it was not a Superior Threads seminar albeit Bob is very knowledgeable and Superior does not practice the same methods as some other thread companies. This person was a FORMER quality control inspector for a large thread company. She was "released" from her position because of "turning back" to much product. (basically fired for doing her job properly)

    She said that "multiple color" thread is actually a dye accident. Dye would come out concentrated in some areas and not others. To take advantage of this, the company would then RE DYE the thread in some areas to create more of a pattern. Some areas might be dyed as many as 5 or 6 times. This would cause the thread to have swollen and thin spots. Also, if you get thread breakage or shredding, look closely where the break happens. Most likely, it will be at a color change spot. Put the thread between your fingers and you can usually feel the color changes. Now, imagine that hitting the needle eye 10 times or so, something is going to give.

    NAYY with Superior Threads, but I do know they do not practice this method with their threads. Knock on wood, I've not had a problem with any multiple color thread from Superior. Too bad I can't say the same for other manufacturers.

    Back to the actual issue, I do agree that 1. The longarmer should make the corrections to your quilts and 2. Take your business elsewhere. If she is an experienced quilter, she ain't gonna get any better at it.
    That's very interesting information. I've not heard this before and have had no problems in my home machines with variegated threads in the bobbin, but like you said the speed of the longarm is going to create more stress on the thread. Longarms will act very differently than home machines, so this is good to know.

  22. #22
    Super Member featherweight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Candace
    Quote Originally Posted by crashnquilt
    Well, dang it! I was really hoping to not see complaints about a longarmer. Now in this situation, I do have to agree with the majority here. She did know that there were issues with the bobbin thread and I do agree she should have fixed the problem. Also, the baby quilt with tension issues, agreed you really need to double check the thread. Baby finger nails can get caught and rip so easy.

    The part of this story that absolutely FLOORS me is "She had changed bobbins and didn't think to look" part! WHAT!?! Given this scenario, I must be a paranoid longarmer. I check the backing every couple of blocks! Also, I listen to my machine and can pretty much hear if I have a bobbin problem and most experienced longarmers do the same.

    I, personally, will NOT use varigated thread in the bobbin. I just have way too many issues with it. Much easier to adjust top tension than bobbin tension. I know there are some out there that will say, "Oh, I've never had an issue with varigated threads in the bobbin." If that is the case, Kudos to you and I hope you will always have that kind of good luck. As for me, once bitten-twice shy.

    Varigated threads are nice, but I am about to the point of not using them AT ALL. I attended a seminar once that gave lots of good information about thread. No, it was not a Superior Threads seminar albeit Bob is very knowledgeable and Superior does not practice the same methods as some other thread companies. This person was a FORMER quality control inspector for a large thread company. She was "released" from her position because of "turning back" to much product. (basically fired for doing her job properly)

    She said that "multiple color" thread is actually a dye accident. Dye would come out concentrated in some areas and not others. To take advantage of this, the company would then RE DYE the thread in some areas to create more of a pattern. Some areas might be dyed as many as 5 or 6 times. This would cause the thread to have swollen and thin spots. Also, if you get thread breakage or shredding, look closely where the break happens. Most likely, it will be at a color change spot. Put the thread between your fingers and you can usually feel the color changes. Now, imagine that hitting the needle eye 10 times or so, something is going to give.

    NAYY with Superior Threads, but I do know they do not practice this method with their threads. Knock on wood, I've not had a problem with any multiple color thread from Superior. Too bad I can't say the same for other manufacturers.

    Back to the actual issue, I do agree that 1. The longarmer should make the corrections to your quilts and 2. Take your business elsewhere. If she is an experienced quilter, she ain't gonna get any better at it.
    That's very interesting information. I've not heard this before and have had no problems in my home machines with variegated threads in the bobbin, but like you said the speed of the longarm is going to create more stress on the thread. Longarms will act very differently than home machines, so this is good to know.
    Candace, Thank you so much for the info. I have never heard that before, but am very glad to get this info. Thanks again and if I use varigated I will order from Superior. I don't have a LA but, will use this info on my regular machine. Beth

  23. #23
    Cyn
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltQtrs
    Totally unacceptable. Find another quilter!
    ditto This is what stops me from sending some of mine out to be done. I have this kind of luck and it would make me sick sick sick to have this happen.

  24. #24
    Junior Member quiltnutt's Avatar
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    I am a longerarmer and I am very disaapointted in her statement to you.
    Tension issues are unaccepptable. It can be fixed with the first bobbin test .
    I use all kinds of thread,varigated,thick,thin,mettllic,etc and never had tension troubles.

    She should have ripped it out and re did then or give you a huge discount.

    I'm ripping out a corner of a quilt,not because of tension trouble,the thread I choose disappears in the fabric and I can't see it. If I'm unhappy I know the owner will be unhappy. That's my rule.

    Hope you can resolve this.

    here is a picture of my dble wedding ring I did for a cust. She wanted 3 layers of batting and this is a King quilt.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  25. #25
    Cyn
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    I wonder if washing them would help in any way?

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