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Thread: Frustrated with my Bernina bobbin!

  1. #1
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    Frustrated with my Bernina bobbin!

    I have a Bernina Artista 640E which I do all of my quilting on. I've used this machine like workhorse for over 10 years and I know most of it's "kinks".

    Lately as I sew, the computer screen shows that the bobbin case needs to be cleaned. I do it, as the manual tells me. I sometimes use canned air when I know I've been using the embroidery/quilting feature which tends to leave behind more dust. The problem is this happens over and over and over. I end up getting so frustrated that I put away my project for a couple of days. Then the feature works well for about two days and starts to show the "clean bobbin case" symbol again. And again. And again.

    What am I doing wrong? Do I need to take it in for servicing? Seems like it should be something simple.

  2. #2
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    Canned air can degrade the metal's finish, I have seen this on bobbin cases. I think it's time for a service.

  3. #3
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    My Husqvarna was doing this, and I wanted to chuck it in the lake!

    What I found was that, especially when I was using the thread cutter a lot, a little bit of lint was building up around the cutter. I had to take the cutter out and clean really thoroughly around it to get the message to go away.

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    See that fuzz bit behind the thread cutter? I had to comb the lint out of that to get the error to quit coming up every time I cut thread. (Edit: it wasn't just when I used the thread cutter, it was every inch or so as I was sewing. Sometimes I would clean everything, and it would tell me to clean the bobbin after two stitches.) It's definitely not in the manual, but it worked!

    Your machine had a different bobbin system from mine, but the problem might be similar. Good luck!
    Last edited by Jennifer23; 07-14-2017 at 06:35 AM.

  4. #4
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    I just bought a Babylock Destiny embroidery machine. This is a small family owned shop, and the two brothers work on a wide variety of machines. They told me not to use canned air, as it's not just air, but has propellants and possibly lubricants in it also, and those items can cause problems gunking up tiny openings in the machine. He did say if I wanted to blow it out, I could use my setup I have for airbrush painting, that has a water separator and I can put the pressure way down.

    Now I know that with the HQ Infinity, the same dealer said it needs to be cleaned with compressed air, (and canned air is fine) but not to use it on my HQ Fusion because the housing is built so it won't blow stuff out - but in where it can get lodged and cause more problems.
    My name is Cathy - and I'm addicted to old sewing machines and their attachments.

  5. #5
    Power Poster QuiltE's Avatar
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    You mentioned that you clean out your machine as per the manual instructs.
    However, does the manual suggest using canned air?

    I don't have yours, but do have a Bernina 820.
    My service tech was very firm to never use canned air, as it will just blow the lint around ... and potentially send it further into the machine than can be reached. Meaning the need to send to him for servicing sooner!
    Instead, the bobbin area should be brushed or vacuumed out regularly.
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  6. #6
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    I suspect the canned air has forced some lint into the sensor. I think it is time to get it serviced by a professional.

  7. #7
    Super Member cashs_mom's Avatar
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    I was also told not to use canned air on either my Bernina Artista 180 or the 1630. They recommended cleaning well and using the vacuum attachement I have. Its possible there's a small piece of lint possibly blown somewhere you can't reach it that's causing the problem. Probably time to take it in for a servicing.
    Patrice S

  8. #8
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    I was told and had heard from more than one source not to use canned air to clean a machine. For all the above reasons.
    Another Phyllis
    This life is the only one you get - enjoy it before you lose it.

  9. #9
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    Thanks everyone!

    Wow! Thanks everyone. I had no idea I could be damaging my machine with canned air. It's gone!
    A special thanks to Jennifer23. I will definitely check the thread cutter before I take it in.

    Cathy

  10. #10
    Super Member Boston1954's Avatar
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    Someone told me a few years back not to used canned air. Jim wanted to when he cleaned it for me last year. I told him that he could not.

    Good luck with you machine.
    Life is not a movie. No one is going to yell "CUT" when you make a mistake. - Anne L. Fulton

    I am from the South....39 miles south of Boston.

  11. #11
    Senior Member quiltedsunshine's Avatar
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    There are a couple symbols that come up on your Bernina.

    One just comes on when you do so many stitches. To get rid of that one, you need to take it to the shop and have the tech re-set the service panel.

    Another symbol indicates that the thread isn't bouncing in the check spring correctly, or "upper thread break." To fix that, remove the cap on the end of the machine and put the check spring back into position. That happens sometimes when the machine is going really fast, then stops on a dime.

    I don't know of a "clean bobbin case" symbol, and I'm a Bernina tech. What does it look like?

    Edited to add: There's also a low bobbin sensor on the B640, which the tech can turn off in the service panel. It can be particularly persnickedy sometimes.

    Remember... if you sew every day, your machine needs to be serviced every year. But never go more than 3 years without a service. It may just be time for a service.
    Last edited by quiltedsunshine; 07-15-2017 at 08:06 PM.
    Annette in Utah

  12. #12
    Senior Member Battle Axe's Avatar
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    Have you considered that the bobbin in question might be warped? If you drop one on concrete or step on it, they get out of round and won't work correctly. Try a new one.

    Marcia

  13. #13
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    I work with ladies at our church and we have about 16 machines and sergers. we also have a shop vac. I regularly use a soft pastry brush while using the vac to get out the lint.

  14. #14
    Super Member PS Stitcher's Avatar
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    I too have a Bernina......well I should say Berninas. I second what everyone is saying about the canned air. My dealer told me that is a big NO-NO for any of my machines. I would say your best bet is to take it in and have it serviced. That cost me about $90 for my 780, but I think it is money well spent for what I paid for the machine.
    Mom to 2 Future Stitchers....Wife to One Great Hubby!
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  15. #15
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    I have a 640E and was told to never use canned air or blow into it. You are just blowing lint deeper in machine. Time for service. Also, by blowing you may blow moisture into it. Good luck
    "Love and kindness are never wasted. They always make a difference. They bless the one who receives them, and they bless you, the giver." Barbara De Angelis

  16. #16
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    I was having issues with my Bernina bobbin - turns out the bobbin was bad - mine have metal inserts and they were worn out causing my machine to have error messages. The fix was to use a different bobbin and throw away the worn out one. Hope the answer to your problem is that simple.

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