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Free motion is more like limited motion!

Free motion is more like limited motion!

Old 12-29-2013, 09:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Knitette View Post
That was until I tried to LA with Aurifil (yes - Aurifil!) on my LQS Gammill. Snap, snap, snap.
I took a class with a well known LA quilter. He said that Aurifil sent him likely thousands of $$ worth of thread, because he'd said he could quilt with it. He was supposed to do demos at one of the large quilt shows, etc. In the end, he was -almost- able to quilt with it, and managed to get it down on only a break or two (a pass? a quilt? I can't recall exactly...) He didn't end up doing the talks. There are better threads for this sort of stitching. The thing I find with Aurifil is that even on a domestic, it's easy to break.

That said, Gammil machines can be extra hard on thread because of all of the guides and multiple tensioners (!?!) the upper thread goes through. http://www.superiorthreads.com/educa...itive-gammill/

That same LA'er said that there's a thread that Superior makes that was developed especially for Gammil machines, but of course the rest of us can use it too. I'll look it up in my notes if anyone wants to know what it was.

Originally Posted by cminor View Post
Its a Singer Quantium Stylist 9960. ....

I am using overlock thread which seems linty.
FMQ does take some time to get the hang of, and machines that use horizontal bobbins can be more challenging to get "just right". Try some of Jamie Wallen's tricks for setting up the tension in this video (it's for Long Arm machines, but the principles are the same. You may have to look at your manual for where the bobbin tension is adjusted. I know where, but I would be hard pressed to explain it.

You need to be able to "dance" with your machine. You have to be in time with it, or "things" happen.

Overlock thread is extremely thin. It will be very unforgiving. Compare it to a Sew-All thread or any 50wt that you have. You'll see how thin it is. I wouldn't use it for FMQ, especially not while learning. I did use it while I was learning to frame quilt on my "old" Juki setup, but it broke a lot. A Lot A lot. As soon as I changed to an appropriate thread, the breakages stopped happening.

Originally Posted by BellaBoo View Post
I use Glide thread, Superior's Organ titanium topstitch needle size 80/12 and Glide Delights prefilled magna bobbins with a Bobbin Genie.
Glide is an excellent thread, especially for beginners to FMQ! It's very forgiving, and poly will stretch a tiny bit before it breaks, instead of snapping right away like cotton does. One particular LA company suggests it for all beginners, and the rental shop here uses it on all the rentals.

I was under the impression that with a magnaglide bobbin, the bobbin Genie would be redundant, or possibly even detrimental (the magnet couldn't do it's job of controlling backlash (
http://www.bobbincentral.com/quiltin...ab-container-1) if it was separated from the metal by the plastic "Washer", but you find this combo works?

ETA: I don't think the magnaglide bobbins would be useful to you cminor. The Quantum has a plastic bobbin case... the magnet can't do its work without metal to hang onto.

Last edited by ArchaicArcane; 12-29-2013 at 09:50 PM.
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Old 12-29-2013, 10:01 PM
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If I'm reading you right, you may have your stitch length set too low. Couple that with a needle too small, no stitch regulation, and changing directions, and I can understand the fraying thread.

You may be trying to start ahead of yourself. Back up and get comfortable doing SITD (or similar) with a walking foot. You may be able to pick up the right timing and amount of movement by going to something more controlled for a bit, just to pick up the routine. I had no end of trouble with FMQ until I went back and quilted a long cabin quilt with SITD and a walking foot (feed dogs up, not down). Only then was I was able to branch out into simple FMQ stitching, and progressively more complicated stitching. Just a thought.
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:47 PM
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First off, I need to say that I am a longarm quilter and have never quilted FMQ on my DSM, so I am only going on something I was told by someone else (like I can remember who :O)...if you turn your machine so you are quilting on it with what we normally consider the left side (needle side) facing towards you (like a longarm faces), it is easier to do FMQ. I would have to agree with those who stated that the thread was also a problem - I swear by Superior Threads and rarely use anything else. Try turning your machine 90 degrees and see if that helps you with keeping your hands and quilt moving more smoothly in every direction.
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