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Thread: Do you have to have a foot on your machine?

  1. #1
    imjustme's Avatar
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    I only have 1 foot- I have had my machine forever and lost the other pieces long ago. I would like to try to do some quilting with my machine but don't have the darning (?) foot I have read about- another thing is I dont see anything that lets me drop my feeder dogs down.
    What can I do?
    Do all the attachments fit every machine or you have to buy the feet for that specific machine- I'm lost

  2. #2
    Super Member nena's Avatar
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    Just me,
    I went and bought a new darning foot and when I got home and read my machine book. It said I did not need to use a foot , Just remove the foot that was on it. The place on my machine to lower the feed dog was beside my bobbon. Hope this helps.
    Nena

  3. #3
    Senior Member dizzy's Avatar
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    ha girl what type of machine do you have.there are machines you can sew witout the foot an there are some you can't but you can pick one up at your sewing shop an make sure you know if it is low shank or high shank.

  4. #4
    Power Poster MadQuilter's Avatar
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    If your machine does not drop the feed dogs, there may be a cover plate available to place over the teeth. It would help knowing what machine you have.

  5. #5
    Senior Member dizzy's Avatar
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    all three of my machines are low shank machines.the measurement between bottom of foot to where you attach it to your machine is almost 1/2 inch.If it is more than that it is high shank

  6. #6
    k3n
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    Hi IJM - I got a Big Foot for my machine http://sewmamasew.com/blog2/?p=863 you have to know whether your machine is low shank or high shank. You do this by measuring the distance between the bottom of the shank (where the foot attaches) and the base plate. I'm not completely sure but I think a low shank is around a quarter inch, but don't quote me!

    Here's a link to the UK site where I got mine - not much use to you I know but good information. And you see that they ask for your make and model to be sure they send you the right foot and adaptor if necessary. Maybe if you google you can find something comparable in the US, or a local sewing machine shop if you have one.

    If you can't drop the feed dogs, just tape a thin piece of plastic or card over them. My old machine wouldn't do this. My newer one has a switch just to the right of the bobbin case. I'm assuming you don't have the manual anymore? I didn't have for my old one but I found it online - try googling. :D

    Hope this helps! :D

    EDITED to say that someone smarter than me knows that low shank is under a half inch not quarter! :oops: :lol: Thanks Dizzy! :D

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by imjustme
    I only have 1 foot- I have had my machine forever and lost the other pieces long ago. I would like to try to do some quilting with my machine but don't have the darning (?) foot I have read about- another thing is I dont see anything that lets me drop my feeder dogs down.
    What can I do?
    Do all the attachments fit every machine or you have to buy the feet for that specific machine- I'm lost
    Hi , I would like to say that when you get a foot . Try it out and make sure it works right on your machine ! I had a walking foot for my singer . Well my grandkids were here and it disappeared ! I went to a sewing shop and bought another one . It does not work on my machine !!! It hangs up on the fabric . At walmart they have a wizard set of several machine feet , but I'm not sure if they'll work or not . Good luck Annie

  8. #8
    Power Poster nativetexan's Avatar
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    you can quilt with just a regular foot if you are doing simple straight stitch. darning foot is for free motion quilting, feed dogs up or down. where you have a fast pedal speed and move the quilt yourself a bit slower.
    many people quilt without a quilting/walking foot.
    if you can piece blocks with that foot you have, you can quilt a quilt. just not too small a stitch length when quilting the whole thing together. that helps prevent puckers. good luck.

  9. #9
    imjustme's Avatar
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    thanks all- I will look and see what my machine is when I get home. I know it's a Singer, but the model I have no idea. My Aunt bought it for me years ago as a Christmas gift.

  10. #10
    ButtercreamCakeArtist's Avatar
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    I can't drop my feed dogs on the first machine I ever owned (still have), but it came with a plastic plate to put over them. I've heard of others taping a thin piece of plastic or heavy paper over the feed dogs, so that may work for you if you don't have the plate to cover them up.
    Try your machine and see if it works without the foot. It probably will.

  11. #11
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    You don't have to use a foot but it sure is dangerous not to. You can buy a generic darning (free motion quilting) foot to fit most all machines.

  12. #12
    luvmy2bts's Avatar
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    Some Singers have slant shanks so make sure you get the right one.

    Debbie KS

  13. #13
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    No, you don't have to have a foot on your machine to FMQ, but personally, I think it makes it much easier.

    You can go to Google and type in the brand and model of your machine plus Manual, and you should be able to find and download a manual for your particular machine. This will tell you where the feed dog control is (if there is one).

    You can go to www.littlefoot.net and get a foot for FMQ and darning for a really good price. It's actually called a Big Foot, and they have them for both low and high shank machines.

    Good luck!

  14. #14

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    If you don't know the model of your Singer, you can determine by keying in the serial number (on older machines). The newer plastic ones are not identified.

    http://Singerco.com/support/serial_numbers.html

    You'll want to get the right walking foot which is a "must have" Some are quite pricey but well worth it. Have you tried your local Singer dealer?

    Pat B

  15. #15
    Super Member Baren*eh*ked_canadian's Avatar
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    I know some people who cover their feed dogs with a playing card, if it doesn't drop down and they don't have the cover plate anymore. My old machine does have the drop feed dogs, but I never had a darning foot, I used a regular foot and it worked fine. I have a darning foot with my new machine, it works better, but the other way worked fine too, I just couldn't see what I was doing quite as well as I can now.

  16. #16
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    i use a darning foot all the time and on my sewing machine the button to lower my feed dogs is under the sewing machine to get to it i slide the part off that makes it so you can sew pants omg i went blank and cant think you know that when you slide it off the little storage part goes with it anyhow the button is on the back under some of the machine
    gosh i hope you can figure out where i am talking !!!!! i tried

  17. #17
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    Mine will free motion without the foot, but does a much better job with a darning foot.

  18. #18
    Super Member Lisa_wanna_b_quilter's Avatar
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    I've been practicing free motion without a foot. I think a darning foot looks like a good purchase. Unless there is a quilting pattern called "Spastic Drunk with Bloody Fingers" a foot would have to help.

  19. #19
    k3n
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lisa_wanna_b_quilter
    I've been practicing free motion without a foot. I think a darning foot looks like a good purchase. Unless there is a quilting pattern called "Spastic Drunk with Bloody Fingers" a foot would have to help.
    Hey - I use that pattern - at least the first part! :lol:

  20. #20
    Super Member Darlene's Avatar
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    My Singer has a plastic cover for hiding the feed dogs. It came with the machine so I am sure you can get one probably online.

  21. #21
    Punksmom's Avatar
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    Some Machines have a switch to lower the feed dogs on the back left side of the maqchine. Sometimes if you have a free arm on the machine you will need to remove it to find the lever. If it doesn't have one you can always tape an index card over the feed dogs. ( First make a hold for the needle to go through.) Hope this helped. :) Also you could always bring your machine with you for the store personel to fit with the foot. Stores that sell machines and feet usually are happy to help.
    Liz

  22. #22
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    Take the foot off your machine and take it with you to a sewing machine store. Most of the specialty sewing machine stores I've been to are combo sewing/vacuum machine stores (just so you'll know how to look it up in the yellow pages). All these stores seem to be the mom & pop variety, with casual atmosphere and friendly, helpful and KNOWLEDGABLE advice (not like your big chain stores who hire help that don't know crapola about what they're selling).

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