Welcome to the Quilting Board!

Already a member? Login above
loginabove
OR
To post questions, help other quilters and reduce advertising (like the one on your left), join our quilting community. It's free!

Results 1 to 22 of 22

Thread: FMQ - despair!

  1. #1
    Super Member annesthreads's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    South Yorkshire UK
    Posts
    1,095
    I have a Janome 4800 QE, which I've owned for about 6 years, a wonderful machine for piecing, but when I try FMQ I get the top thread coming through on the bottom of the quilt. I have sat with a practice piece and gone from 1-9 on the tension control, moving it up half a number at a time, and there's no setting at which this doesn't happen. It improves a bit around no.7. but is still not good. The shop say there's nothing wrong with the machine and it must be me. I have tried all sorts of threads and needles. The only near-success was with embroidery thread - but I don't want to be limited to just one type. I would be grateful for any help or advice on thread, needles, technique, before this machine goes through the window. OK, it's not top of the range, but it wasn't cheap either, and I do think that to expect a "quilter's edition" machine to quilt isn't unreasonable!

  2. #2
    Super Member quilterella's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Small town south of Ottawa, Ontario
    Posts
    1,702
    Blog Entries
    1
    A friend that has that machine was having the same problem. After a large repair bill and still having the problem, she contacted the Janome headquarters and they advised her to try a different bobbin. This did work, why, I don't know, but it has been fine ever since. So maybe try a different bobbin!

  3. #3
    Super Member lindyline's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    sunbury victoria australia
    Posts
    2,599
    I'm sorry you're having so much trouble, but the only advise I can give you, is practice, practice, practice. Took me forever to get the hang of it, and I still muck it up every now and then.And I've got a singer, not top of the lline, and not bottome of the line either. Have you tried Little Genie Magic Bobbin Washers. They really helped me at the start, now I don't need them, but maybe they would help you. Keep with it.

  4. #4
    k3n
    k3n is offline
    Power Poster k3n's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Somerset, England
    Posts
    10,712
    Blog Entries
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by annesthreads
    I have a Janome 4800 QE, which I've owned for about 6 years, a wonderful machine for piecing, but when I try FMQ I get the top thread coming through on the bottom of the quilt. I have sat with a practice piece and gone from 1-9 on the tension control, moving it up half a number at a time, and there's no setting at which this doesn't happen. It improves a bit around no.7. but is still not good. The shop say there's nothing wrong with the machine and it must be me. I have tried all sorts of threads and needles. The only near-success was with embroidery thread - but I don't want to be limited to just one type. I would be grateful for any help or advice on thread, needles, technique, before this machine goes through the window. OK, it's not top of the range, but it wasn't cheap either, and I do think that to expect a "quilter's edition" machine to quilt isn't unreasonable!
    Top thread on the bottom is usually too loose a tension but that can't be the case here as you state you tried all tensions - you say you tried several threads and needles - I have a Janome 6600 and get the best results with Superior Threads - Bottom Line in the bobbin and Masterpiece in the top. Are you trying good quality, branded threads? I also use an 80/12 Schmetz needle. I have the Janome blue dot bobbin case for FMQ, but I wouldn't get the problems you describe with the regular case and the supplied FMQ foot so I don't think that alone is the issue. Do you know about the Janome Yahoo Group? There's lots of tips and advice on there and sign up is free... :-D

  5. #5
    k3n
    k3n is offline
    Power Poster k3n's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Somerset, England
    Posts
    10,712
    Blog Entries
    1
    Also does that model have a foot pressure adjuster? For FMQ I reduce mine from the 3 it's on for piecing right down to 1... the other thing that just occurred to me - you are lowering the pressure foot and the dogs are down right? Sorry, trying to cover all possibilities here...

  6. #6
    Super Member annesthreads's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    South Yorkshire UK
    Posts
    1,095
    I'm very reassured to hear that I'm not the only one. I've seen posts on other forums that suggest that some Janome machines have this problem. I presume the bobbin that your friend got was the one they've produced specially for FMQ. I think I'll have to give it a try. But it annoys me that Janome have never been honest enough to say "yes, that machine has a known issue with this, and this is how you solve it". I could live with that - no machine can be ideal - but the implication from them and the dealer that it must be all my fault has been very unhelpful, wasted a lot of time and destroyed my confidence and enjoyment.

  7. #7
    Super Member annesthreads's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    South Yorkshire UK
    Posts
    1,095
    I've just had a quick look at your website K, and will be going back - some fabulous work there!
    I've tried all sorts of threads, but Superior are my favourite. Thanks for suggesting the combination, as I've been very unsure what might be best. I'll try that size of needle too - I think I have a different one at the moment.
    You may see my post appear in the Janome forum!
    Thankyou for all your help - I'll report back!

  8. #8
    Super Member annesthreads's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    South Yorkshire UK
    Posts
    1,095
    I don't think it does have a foot pressure adjustor, but I'll check. Yes, I usually(!) remember to put the pressure foot down, and I've tried feed dogs down and up. Thanks for checking - always worth going back to the basics. I even used the manual to check I was threading the machine correctly (after 6 years!).

  9. #9
    k3n
    k3n is offline
    Power Poster k3n's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Somerset, England
    Posts
    10,712
    Blog Entries
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by annesthreads
    I've just had a quick look at your website K, and will be going back - some fabulous work there!
    I've tried all sorts of threads, but Superior are my favourite. Thanks for suggesting the combination, as I've been very unsure what might be best. I'll try that size of needle too - I think I have a different one at the moment.
    You may see my post appear in the Janome forum!
    Thankyou for all your help - I'll report back!
    You're welcome and good luck! I love my Janome and have heard others say that they can be thread and needle snobs, so I almost exclusively use Schmetz and Superior - however, when I'm thread painting on an art quilt for eg, I sometimes chuck in any old poly or rayon that's laying around just because it's the colour I want and no problem! I really hope you get it sorted - I feel your frustration! Can you go into a dealership or to a quilt show at one point and have an FMQ on a different machine? That would reassure you that it wasn't YOU? :-D

  10. #10
    k3n
    k3n is offline
    Power Poster k3n's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Somerset, England
    Posts
    10,712
    Blog Entries
    1
    Quote Originally Posted by annesthreads
    I don't think it does have a foot pressure adjustor, but I'll check. Yes, I usually(!) remember to put the pressure foot down, and I've tried feed dogs down and up. Thanks for checking - always worth going back to the basics. I even used the manual to check I was threading the machine correctly (after 6 years!).
    The other thing I use, but it wouldn't effect tension, is a Sew Slip mat... and yes sometimes I get mad because it's not working and then I unthread everything and start from scratch - and it's usually operator error! Somedays though, it just doesn't flow and I have to go away and leave it. Next day, sit down again, nothing different in the machine, thread, quilt etc and I can FMQ again! :shock: :lol:

  11. #11
    Izy
    Izy is offline
    Super Member Izy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Halifax, W. Yorks, U.K.
    Posts
    5,997
    I have the Janome 9000, old model now. Are you new to free motion? If so it could be that you are whipping around the curves too quickly, which creates 'the eyelash' effect on the back. I was so frustrated when this was happening to me, until a more experience sewer explained that this was in fact one of the 'lessons' she taught and I was a natural LOL Since I slowed down when going around a curve.. (think big head little neck, big head little neck...when meandering!) My tension issues improved amazingly!

    I have also found it SO much better slowing down my machine speed to half speed which gives you more time to plan ahead so you are not panicking when you come close to another row of stitching. My stitch length is becoming more even too.

    Of course it may not be this at all but something to consider ;)

  12. #12
    Super Member annesthreads's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    South Yorkshire UK
    Posts
    1,095
    Can you go into a dealership or to a quilt show at one point and have an FMQ on a different machine? That would reassure you that it wasn't YOU? :-D[/quote]
    Well,things have moved on a bit this morning, because I did exactly as you suggest here. I had to collect my Mum's sewing machine, which I've just had serviced, so I asked again about FMQ. This time the dealer who in the past has told me it must be my fault almost admitted that the Janome is not ideal for FMQ. I tried 2 Berninas and a Brother machine, and produced not perfect but quite acceptable FMQ on all of them. I nearly cried when I saw the results - for so long I've been blaming myself and thinking I must be exceptionally incompetent: to see the stitching that I'd produced, with no loops on the back, was just so reassuring.
    It's going to take a while to make the decision about choosing a new machine, but at least I now know that that is the right way forward. In the meantime I'll try some of the suggestions on here, including buying the bobbin case for the Janome, as I really don't like being defeated!

  13. #13
    Super Member annesthreads's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    South Yorkshire UK
    Posts
    1,095
    If so it could be that you are whipping around the curves too quickly, which creates 'the eyelash' effect on the back. I was so frustrated when this was happening to me, until a more experience sewer explained that this was in fact one of the 'lessons' she taught and I was a natural LOL Since I slowed down when going around a curve.. (think big head little neck, big head little neck...when meandering!) My tension issues improved amazingly!

    I have also found it SO much better slowing down my machine speed to half speed which gives you more time to plan ahead so you are not panicking when you come close to another row of stitching. My stitch length is becoming more even too.

    Thanks for this, I recognise all that you describe and not keeping my movement steady on curves has certainly been a factor. But NONE of my stitches have been OK - the top thread comes through all the time.

  14. #14
    Izy
    Izy is offline
    Super Member Izy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Halifax, W. Yorks, U.K.
    Posts
    5,997
    Quote Originally Posted by annesthreads
    If so it could be that you are whipping around the curves too quickly, which creates 'the eyelash' effect on the back. I was so frustrated when this was happening to me, until a more experience sewer explained that this was in fact one of the 'lessons' she taught and I was a natural LOL Since I slowed down when going around a curve.. (think big head little neck, big head little neck...when meandering!) My tension issues improved amazingly!

    I have also found it SO much better slowing down my machine speed to half speed which gives you more time to plan ahead so you are not panicking when you come close to another row of stitching. My stitch length is becoming more even too.

    Thanks for this, I recognise all that you describe and not keeping my movement steady on curves has certainly been a factor. But NONE of my stitches have been OK - the top thread comes through all the time.
    In some respects I am glad that you now know at least that it is not down to your 'incompetence' but bad news about your machine.. it isn't right that you were 'kept in the dark' about Janome's not being the best on the market for free motion!



    :shock:

  15. #15
    Super Member annesthreads's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    South Yorkshire UK
    Posts
    1,095
    In some respects I am glad that you now know at least that it is not down to your 'incompetence' but bad news about your machine.. it isn't right that you were 'kept in the dark' about Janome's not being the best on the market for free motion!



    :shock:[/quote]

    ..or not my Janome, anyway. I know that many people are very enthusiastic about the higher-end models, that are truly designed for quilting. I suspect that the one I have is basically an embroidery machine with "QE" added to the model number and a walking foot thrown in! Not a good strategy, because when I buy a new machine I will be very wary of Janome now, however good the reviews.

  16. #16
    Super Member SuzyQ's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    1,244
    I've never tried it but I've heard people talk about the Bobbin Genie (I think that's the name). It's a disc that you put in with your bobbin. I'm not sure what types of bobbin cases it works with.

    Susan

  17. #17
    Izy
    Izy is offline
    Super Member Izy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Halifax, W. Yorks, U.K.
    Posts
    5,997
    Quote Originally Posted by annesthreads
    In some respects I am glad that you now know at least that it is not down to your 'incompetence' but bad news about your machine.. it isn't right that you were 'kept in the dark' about Janome's not being the best on the market for free motion!



    :shock:
    ..or not my Janome, anyway. I know that many people are very enthusiastic about the higher-end models, that are truly designed for quilting. I suspect that the one I have is basically an embroidery machine with "QE" added to the model number and a walking foot thrown in! Not a good strategy, because when I buy a new machine I will be very wary of Janome now, however good the reviews.[/quote]

    No doubt you are right, mine is an embroidery machine too...I have been looking at buying another machine purely for free motion..oh but the price!!!

    :shock: :roll: :lol:

  18. #18
    Super Member annesthreads's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    South Yorkshire UK
    Posts
    1,095
    No doubt you are right, mine is an embroidery machine too...I have been looking at buying another machine purely for free motion..oh but the price!!!

    :shock: :roll: :lol:[/quote]

    I know! I just have to tell myself that if I can get the right machine it'll make me happy for the rest of my life! And if I have to find a 4 figure sum - so be it. After all the traumas I've had with this one, I just want something reliable that I can enjoy.

  19. #19
    Izy
    Izy is offline
    Super Member Izy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Halifax, W. Yorks, U.K.
    Posts
    5,997
    Quote Originally Posted by annesthreads
    No doubt you are right, mine is an embroidery machine too...I have been looking at buying another machine purely for free motion..oh but the price!!!

    :shock: :roll: :lol:
    I know! I just have to tell myself that if I can get the right machine it'll make me happy for the rest of my life! And if I have to find a 4 figure sum - so be it. After all the traumas I've had with this one, I just want something reliable that I can enjoy.[/quote]

    Absolutely, I was looking at a pfaff 1200 grand quilter as it has more space for the quilt....

  20. #20
    Super Member annesthreads's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    South Yorkshire UK
    Posts
    1,095
    Absolutely, I was looking at a pfaff 1200 grand quilter as it has more space for the quilt....[/quote]

    I dream of a Bernina Aurora...

  21. #21
    Izy
    Izy is offline
    Super Member Izy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Halifax, W. Yorks, U.K.
    Posts
    5,997
    Quote Originally Posted by annesthreads
    Absolutely, I was looking at a pfaff 1200 grand quilter as it has more space for the quilt....
    I dream of a Bernina Aurora...[/quote]

    IF I won the lottery then of course I would have the top of the range LOL...BUT my budget is only a fraction of what they cost
    :thumbdown:

    I bought my Janome 9000 3 years ago, 2nd hand from my guild leader who paid 3K for it 10 years ago....I got it with lots of extras and a craftsmen built wooden sewing table for 1500 Euros, so in hindsight todays cost haven't increased much all considering!!

  22. #22
    Izy
    Izy is offline
    Super Member Izy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Halifax, W. Yorks, U.K.
    Posts
    5,997
    Ooops double post, so sorry! ;-)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

SEO by vBSEO ©2011, Crawlability, Inc.