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Thread: Help with machine

  1. #1
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    Unhappy Help with machine

    I am somewhat new to quilting and mostly self taught with the help of this board and the internet. Three years ago I found my mother's Kenmore sewing machine in her garage and have made several very basic quilts on it and I was doing fine. My sweet husband decided I needed a new machine. We really couldn't afford an expensive machine so he bought me a Brother XR1355. I so appreciate him but I cannot sew on this thing. I read the book from cover to cover before I started. It's almost impossible for me to get a good 1/4" seam and the thread on the top looks like it skips. I tried to post a picture but couldn't get it to post. Does anyone have any secrets to this machine? I've tired for weeks and now all I want to do is throw this machine against the wall and go back to my mom's Kenmore. I'm so frustrated I want to cry, wait I have cried. I appreciate everyone on this board and all the help you've already given me.
    Last edited by shortcake2012; 03-09-2015 at 05:11 PM.

  2. #2
    Gay
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    Senior Member Gay's Avatar
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    I have 2 Brother embroidery machines and love them, so user friendly and no problems with them. Though not familiar with the xr1355 have read good reports. For the 1/4" seam you should be able to move the needle to the right using the stitch width feature. Draw 2 lines on paper, 1/4" apart, place under the foot with one line where the edge of your fabric sits, then move the needle till it is directly over the 2nd line.

    Also the dealer who sold your sweety the machine should offer free lessons. Take them up on it and take your machine so they can help with the skipping stitches. And don't retire your Kenmore, most of us have several machines and use the lot.

    Good Luck,
    Gay

  3. #3
    Power Poster PaperPrincess's Avatar
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    Have you tried changing the needle? Often that's what causes skipped stitches. Make sure it's inserted all the way up in the shaft and is facing the right direction. You may need to use a guide to get your seam allowance, like a piece of tape or stack of post it notes.
    Here's some instructions on how to post pictures. If we could see the problem, we might be able to help more...
    First do this:
    http://www.quiltingboard.com/qb-help...g-t166655.html
    Then do this:
    http://www.quiltingboard.com/qb-help...s-t168819.html
    "I do not understand how anyone can live without one small place of enchantment to turn to."
    Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings

  4. #4
    Power Poster Prism99's Avatar
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    Where was the machine purchased? If from Walmart or Costco, you may be able to return it. If from a dealer, the dealer should be able to show you how to adjust the machine.

    The reviews for this machine are pretty good:
    http://www.amazon.com/Brother-XR1355...dp/B00FMYYGA4/

    My best guess is that there is something minor wrong -- needle not inserted correctly, tension not set correctly, or.......

    Do you have any family or friends who sew? Someone with some experience may be able to help you out.

  5. #5
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    My oh so sweet and thoughtful hubby bought it at Costco. I will try using the paper method you suggested. Thanks so much

  6. #6
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    Yes, never thought to ask my friend who also sews. She may not be familiar with my particular machine but if she saw what the stitches are doing she might be able to advise me. Thank you, everyone on here is always so eager to jump in and offer advice. I really can't express how much this board has helped my.

  7. #7
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    One thing you might try is taking off throat plate and making sure there's no stuff matted up under there. Also thoroughly clean entire bobbin area. That fixed mine when it was misbehaving. Oh, a good oiling wherever your manual indicates can also be helpful.

  8. #8
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    I will take off the throat plate, nothing should be there but it certainly won't hurt to try. I hate wasting all this time just trying to figure the machine out...I could be piecing my next quilt.

  9. #9
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    Check out your warranty and see if you can find a technician that can take a look at the machine. Have you contacted Brother, the maker of the machine???
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  10. #10
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    Also, the dealer I bought my Brothers at told me that these machines only like Brothers bobbins. When I have had trouble with my machine it always seems to be something in the bobbin area. Don't feel like you are wasting your time. I think you will love this machine once you find out what needs to be corrected.
    Marilyn

  11. #11
    Senior Member Sally J's Avatar
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    I have a small Brother (a different model but with the same attached sewing platform). This is the only machine I can do a perfect 1/4 seam. I use the standard foot and move my needle to the right. I also put a piece of painters tape on the platform and it does make a difference so you keep the material straight. I used the same idea as others suggested with the 1/4 inch paper, then I tested with 2 pieces of fabric 2 1/2 wide. With the 3 pieces of fabric sewn together the middle on should be exactly 2 inches. Once I found the perfect needle position I noted the setting, took a ruler and laid it lined up with the side of the pressure foot and put the tape on the platform. One tip I learned from a really experienced quilter. Don't look at the pressure foot, look about 3 inches in front of it and make sure your fabric is straight. Hope that helps.

  12. #12
    Super Member Girlfriend's Avatar
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    I bought this machine to take on a quilting retreat on an airplane. I love this little machine. The way you get a scant 1/4" seam is to move the needle position to 5.5 using the J foot (3.5 is center).

    I also have a Babylock Symphony and the Brother Quattro 2. The only differences between these 3 machines are all the added features - they basically all sew the same great basic stitch. In other words, I can't tell the difference which machine I sewed the straight stitch on.

    I would be happy to talk to you on the phone and answer any questions you have, please pm me.
    Last edited by Girlfriend; 03-10-2015 at 08:31 AM.
    Creative clutter is better than idle neatness.

  13. #13
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    I have recently purchased a used Quattro 2 6700D embroidery machine. I was wondering if anyone knows if the machine will stitch out identical items in the hoop one color at a time. Example, I am making chick/bunny candie holders and can get 3 in the large hoop. I would like to be able to do the same step on all 3 at the same time to avoid changing threads so often. I can't seem to find where I can do this. Thanks in advance.

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