Old 07-31-2013, 07:32 PM
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Default Fmq

I am doing this for the first time and really practicing but my bobbin thread is pulling to the top. Never ever had that problem with normal sewing. I think it may be the needle. What needle would you recommend for free motion quilting? I am using a quilt needle size 12 or 90 I think is the equivalent. Using a straight stitch 3 in length. Is there a difference in the package that says quilt or the one that says universal etc.

Would appreciate any advice.

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Old 07-31-2013, 07:39 PM
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That size is ok. Gauge needle size to the thread size. No need to adjust stitch length as your hand and machine speed controls stitch length. More info about your study about FAQ and your technique would be helpful. Are u following any specific instruction or watching you tupe tutorials.
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Old 07-31-2013, 07:51 PM
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Needle size is fine but you either need to loosen the top thread tension or increase the bobbing tension to get a balanced stitch. I usually have to adjust my bobbin from regular sewing to slightly tighter for FMQ.
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Old 07-31-2013, 08:00 PM
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I am with Holice. It also depends on what machine you have, too. It sounds like a tension situation....if it s a longarm, the number of stitches per minute can be faster then it is on DSM. The tension is generally loose both on top and bottom for the longarm. Looks like the tension is extra loose on the bottom and the top thread is tight on your machine. It helps to check the tension first. As far as the needle goes, it is a matter of experimenting to see what works best for you, especially if you are using DSM. Topstitch needles is my favorite because the hole is longer/bigger. It puts less strain on the thread. I use size 16/100 needle most of the time for quilting.
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Old 07-31-2013, 08:11 PM
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When FMQ you're asking the machine to stitch thru a sandwich, whereas when regular stitching, just two pieces of cotton. Therefore, you may need to adjust the tension, among other things.

Needles types and sizes can vary ... depending on the fabrics (regular cotton or batik, heavy or light cottons, type of batting, # of seams you will be going over, and # of layers of fabric). Quilting, embroidery, and topstitch are some I have been using. And yet, I know some who manage to do an exceptional job, just with Universal needles.

You didn't mention what type of a machine you are using. Most FMQing the stitch length will not be set, as you have the feed dogs down and control the length with how you move the fabric. However, if you have a Bernina with a BSR, yes you will be setting the stitch length. Length is a personal preference ... I know some who stay as small as 2.0 and onwards and upwards from there. It depends what I am doing as to where I set it. I do a lot of practice for the project before I decide what I want.
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Old 07-31-2013, 08:20 PM
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I agree, it sounds like you probably need to loosen your top tension. Try loosening it a little at a time until you see improvement. And I also use a larger needle, preferably a 16/100. I sometimes use a top-stitching needle (it will say on the pkg), depends on the thread I am using. It always helps to do a practice sandwich of the exact fabric, thread and batting you will be quilting on because all of these can affect the way the stitches look as well. Also, depending on your machine, make sure the feed dogs are down. Although some folks do seem to FMQ just fine with them up.
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Old 07-31-2013, 08:41 PM
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I have a Husqvarna Sapphire Q. 4 years old. Love my machine
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Old 08-01-2013, 05:31 AM
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I always have to lower my upper thread tension when free motion quilting.
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