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Thread: Frogging "tools" recommendations please!!

  1. #1
    Senior Member letawellman's Avatar
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    Frogging "tools" recommendations please!!

    Hi all!!

    Well, one of my UFO's is a queen-sized Lone Star. And after looking at it (again), I am not only very unhappy with what I had begun in the great, big, open setting squares and triangles, I am also unhappy with the quilting inside the gazillion diamonds as well.

    So... I had already known I was going to have to frog the setting squares and triangles (and was really dreading it, hence the reason it's a UFO). Now, since I'm going to frog the whole thing, does anyone use those clippers that look like beard trimmers?

    Our leader in my longarm guild swears by hers, but I wanted some more input as well.

    I know there are several different brands out there, and wanted a second (and third and fourth and so on...) opinion on these things. Are they worth the money??
    Leta in Upstate SC
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    Viking Designer 1, Viking Quilt Designer, Viking MegaQuilter 18x8,
    1952 Singer Featherweight 221

  2. #2
    Super Member osewme's Avatar
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    I can't answer your question about the clippers but you can answer my question about frogging. What does it mean to frog a quilt? I've never heard of this before.

  3. #3
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    I have used the trimmer and loved it - but if you get careless it will eat your fabric. Also, mine died within a year so I didn't bother to replace it. It worked very well on long strips but not so much small pieces.

  4. #4
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    frogging a quilt, means to rip-it, rip-it.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by osewme View Post
    I can't answer your question about the clippers but you can answer my question about frogging. What does it mean to frog a quilt? I've never heard of this before.
    Frogging is when you unsew or rippit rippit rippit

  6. #6
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    I like cutting the thread every 3 to 4 stitches on one side and then pull off the thread on the opposite side. I find this works best for not stretching the fabrics. I use these dandy sharp little snips.Name:  image.jpeg
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  7. #7
    Super Member osewme's Avatar
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    I have never heard of rip-it/rip-it used as frogging. That is just to funny! Thanks for the laugh.

  8. #8
    Super Member KalamaQuilts's Avatar
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    I've used the clippers for at least 20 years. One thing I've started doing this year is move my quilt length stith up to 2.10. Plenty tight enough for patchwork but Much easier to unstitch. I haven't picked up my clippers in a couple of weeks.

  9. #9
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    I bought the clippers for a really nasty ripping job, but they didn't work for that (removing about 30 yards of satin stitched ribbon).

    I have used them a time or two on quilts, when I needed to rip a lot. I like them best for long seams, to me they are not worth if for smaller seams. So now I'll pull them out if I need to take off a border, or unsew rows.

    I really hate dealing with the tiny threads that get left behind, but the rubber end of my hand ripper helps to remove them. Didn't have a lint brush last time I used it, but I did try using masking tape rapped around my hand and that helped.
    My name is Cathy - and I'm addicted to old sewing machines and their attachments.

  10. #10
    Super Member Lilrain's Avatar
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    I personally love my Madiers seam ripper. Best i have ever owned, in 30 years of quilting. A friend uses an awl, pulls out a bunch at one time. I cant seem to get the hang of it.

  11. #11
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    For unquilting, I use a box knife blade. I pull the sandwich apart as much as I can and just touch the blade to the threads, and they cut like butter. This does leave bits of threads, so I run a cheap emery board across the fabric and it picks the threads right up. No, I have never cut the backing or batting, and the blade doesn't get anywhere close to the top.

    For unsewing, I picked up Ricky Tims' frogging technique. He takes the piece in question, snips the first 4-5 threads, then with hands on both sides of the patch or piece in question, he rips. Literally. Just like ripping yardage. He yanks the seam apart. I wouldn't do this on anything bias, though.

  12. #12
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    Are you removing quilting, or taking apart blocks? I haven't used a trimmer myself, but I saw someone removing quilting with one, and I was *amazed* at how fast it went! If I was removing a lot of quilting, I would buy one in a heartbeat to try it (and return it if it didn't work well). For disassembling blocks, I would stick with my seam ripper - it's fine for single seams.

    When I saw the moustache trimmer being used, there were two people working together. They laid the quilt out backing side up (so that if they nicked the fabric, they didn't ruin the top). Then one person pulled the backing up while holding down the batting and front, and the other person did a back-and-forth with the trimmer along the backing. They basically peeled the backing off (it kind of reminded me of skinning a carcass). The moustache trimmer meant that more than one line of stitches could be clipped at once, so it went really quickly. They removed the fairly dense FMQ from a full-sized quilt in about half an hour. Obviously they had practice, but it worked really well. They used a sticky lint roller on the front to get off the thread bits.

  13. #13
    Super Member luvstoquilt's Avatar
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    I love my "beard trimmer". I have worn out one and now have a new one.
    "You must do the thing you think you cannot do"....E. Roosevelt

    Sharon
    Yorkville, IL

  14. #14
    Senior Member Sheri.a's Avatar
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    I have one purchased at my LQS called the "Quick Ripper". It stays right next to my sewing machine all of the time.

    I use it a lot, but not for every single ripout. If there is a lock stitch, I use the clover seam ripper. You also have to be very careful you don't cut the fabric.
    ( `v )
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    a stitch in time saves nine.....

  15. #15
    Senior Member Reba'squilts's Avatar
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    I had to rip a entire baby quilt, ran to my LQS and bought a shaver thingy!! Worked great, did have to be careful not to cut fabric. Don't use it often but it works pretty good after a small learning curve.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Kath12's Avatar
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    I use mine all the time. I paid $20 for from a quilt show vender. I peeled off the label and discovered it was a Wahl trimmer. I went to Walmart and looked at the razors and they were around the same price. Then I went over to the pet department and they had them for $8.97. That was a few years ago so I don't know if the price is the same. It's worth checking out.
    I found that if you use it on an ironing pad or some other non-slick surface and anchor the bottom piece down with one hand or pin then it will cut the threads better.
    Kathy Stewart from IA
    http://community.webshots.com/user/kath_stirut

  17. #17
    Junior Member jumpin' judy's Avatar
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    For seam ripping, try and eyebrow razor. It is small, has a sharp little blade with little plastic "fingers" covering the blade. Just barely touch the stitch and it cuts. Works pretty fast too. I have never cut the fabric with one. Also cheap!
    ​Jumpin' Judy

  18. #18
    Senior Member letawellman's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for the comments and suggestions.
    In answer to one question, this is "unquilting", not simply "unsewing".

    Neither of them are a joy.

    I have a box knife blade, so I will try Peckish's suggestion first. I may "sneak" and "borrow" hubby's mustache trimmer too, just to "test" if it works. Come to think of it, I think the horse trimmers are out in the barn... may have to "test" those out as well, and see what happens.

    Again, thank you all for your suggestions.
    Leta in Upstate SC
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    Viking Designer 1, Viking Quilt Designer, Viking MegaQuilter 18x8,
    1952 Singer Featherweight 221

  19. #19
    Super Member misseva's Avatar
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    I paid $10 for my mustache trimmer. Works great.
    TwandasMom

  20. #20
    Super Member Barb_MO's Avatar
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    I have a stencil cutter I use, not real handy if your doing it yourself but can be done. It would be a breeze if one person was hold it while the other touched the thread to cut...it only takes a tough with the blade and its cut.

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