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Can a Long Arm Do This?

Can a Long Arm Do This?

Old 11-07-2019, 02:41 PM
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Default Can a Long Arm Do This?

Before I go and speak to the owner and book rental time on a long arm, I'd like to know if I can actually accomplish what I'm trying to do.

The quilt is made of batiks, front and backing with 80/20 batting.

I want to do vertical lines up and down the whole thing top to bottom.....Which I imagine means I will have to load it sideways so I can go from side to side? (Really top to bottom)

It is 90" long...is that too long for most long arms to accommodate sideways?

If that part works, is there a function on long arms that will help me keep the rows straight or will I have to use a ruler for every row. I've heard of channel locks...is that of any use in this application?

I would like to have the lines 1/2" apart.

The long arm I rent has an E to E computer....Is there such a thing as a straight line E to E?

The option, of course is to do the whole thing either a) with my walking foot on my DSM (somebody shoot me now) or b) freehand it on my mid arm. (This idea doesn't appeal either, but it could be done.)

Thanks for any input, Watson
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Old 11-07-2019, 02:47 PM
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​I know you can channel lock some long arms so that would do your lines. I think you would need to talk to the owner to see if the frames was wide enough to load it sideways and if they have channel locks.
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Old 11-07-2019, 03:19 PM
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a 10ft frame will accommodate loading a 90" long quilt sideways.
Some LA have channel locks but you can improvise a channel lock with vice grips (the spring loaded kind). You put the grips on so the carriage that holds the machine head can't move front to back (sometimes referred to as the Y axis). You need at least two, one in front of the carriage and one behind but you may want 4 to be assured of a more secure "locking". Not sure if the rental place will allow you to do that though. They don't harm the rails or the machine as the grip part is usually rubber but they may be hesitant to let you do that. You would space your lines by advancing the quilt. To ensure 1/2" spacing you could check it with a ruler but once you have the head locked in place so it can't move front to back you don't need to use the ruler to quilt the lines. The vice grips are functional but not foolproof. You have to be very careful when you move the machine from right to left (or left to right) you don't inadvertently pull it towards you. For this to work your quilt needs to be perfectly square and needs to be loaded perfectly too. I don't know enough about computer guided machines to say if there is an E2E program that would just do straight lines.

Edited to add it wouldn't be that awful to quilt like this on your DSM with a walking foot but I would recommend switching directions with every line.

Last edited by feline fanatic; 11-07-2019 at 03:21 PM.
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Old 11-07-2019, 03:20 PM
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Depends on machine, on my 12' HQ Fushon with robotics, it would be a real simple thing to do. Just turn the computer on and use the electronic channel locks and stitch away. I could also use the manual channel locks (it's a rubber piece that holds the wheels from rolling) but if I push hard, I can overcome them.

Most robotics have the channel lock feature as it's a easy way to check that you've got the quilt mounted straight.
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Old 11-07-2019, 04:02 PM
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If the machine has robotics, then yes, you should be able to set it to do straight lines, even several lines. You will need about 6" of free space left and right of the quilt, for bobbin changing etc, so a 10ft frame would be great.
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Old 11-07-2019, 04:54 PM
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This is how I keep the longarm in a straight line from side to side. To lock it for motion front to back, the clips go around a different set of wheels, on the back rail. I know some people put their clamps directly on the wheels, but for me this works better and has absolutely no chance of harming the wheels.

Yes, you should be able to do what you want to do, but I agree that your quilt needs to be straight and you need to be sure that it is also loaded straight and kept straight as it is advanced.
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Old 11-07-2019, 06:00 PM
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one thought--if you are thinking that the lines will hit the block is a specific spot, then your quilt must be ultra squared up and loaded on the frame very straight. Otherwise yes, load sideways, lock the channel locks and zip away. I think the idea of 1/2" spaces are wise--1/4" is just too narrow and any shifting or unsquareness of the quilt will be problematic.
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Old 11-09-2019, 05:22 AM
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I do have channel locks on my Qnique and can do that. My frame is not big enough to have it turned that way but if it was, that would be the way to go. I did similar on a baby and you do have to pay close attention to having the quilt loaded straight on the rollers
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Old 11-09-2019, 05:40 AM
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Thanks, everyone.

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Old 11-09-2019, 12:42 PM
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If you want your lines to go top to bottom , put the quilt on side ways .
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