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Thread: Long arm tension problems

  1. #1
    Super Member grammyp's Avatar
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    OK here is the back story. Last year for Christmas DH got me a Voyager 17 mid arm and frame. The machine had a crack in the finish, so they took it back and replaced it. The new machine is driving me nuts. The presser foot tension knob was broken off, they sent a new one. Now it is either eating thread or looping on the back. I have changed needles, thread, and bobbin cases, re-threaded, adjusted tension on the machine and the quilt in the frame (thought it may be stretched too tight). I can get it to sew well for about 3 minutes, then it starts skipping stitches and breaks the thread. Then sometimes it will get loops on the back (sometimes big, sometimes little). I'm at my wit's end. I'm going to ask them to send me a new tension assembly and see if that helps.

    Does anyone have any more suggestions? Please, something. I need some wine.

  2. #2
    Super Member DebraK's Avatar
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    pulls out the chardonnay.... Sorry, all I got.

  3. #3
    Super Member charismah's Avatar
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    I am so sorry that happened...very frustrating! I actually bought that machine myself and had similar issues.....i quilted one quilt then it went out of time..so I sent the whole thing back and got my money back. SO I bought an Innova...sorry I can't help you but pretty soon you will either have a whole new machine that you assembled yourself...part by part??.....or you will be a whiz at tension issues! Gotta look at the bright side of things!

  4. #4
    Senior Member Shelley's Avatar
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    I know they are kind of spendy, but I wouldn't be without my TOWA gauge. It lets you know what your bottom tension is. By having a consistent bottom tension, you can then adjust your top until you get the balance that you need. Not all bobbing are the same, nor do that all load the same. The TOWA will help you adjust if you need to do so.

    Hang in there!! It will get better!

  5. #5
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    you might ask about timing which involeds your bobin race

  6. #6
    Senior Member trueimage's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shelley
    I know they are kind of spendy, but I wouldn't be without my TOWA gauge. It lets you know what your bottom tension is. By having a consistent bottom tension, you can then adjust your top until you get the balance that you need. Not all bobbing are the same, nor do that all load the same. The TOWA will help you adjust if you need to do so.

    Hang in there!! It will get better!

    I would LOVE one, but they're a little pricey for me. I'm having the same tension issues with my Janome 1600p.

  7. #7
    Super Member grammyp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shelley
    I know they are kind of spendy, but I wouldn't be without my TOWA gauge. It lets you know what your bottom tension is. By having a consistent bottom tension, you can then adjust your top until you get the balance that you need. Not all bobbing are the same, nor do that all load the same. The TOWA will help you adjust if you need to do so.

    Hang in there!! It will get better!
    I may end up having to get one, but I have always been able to adjust my bobbin without it in the bast. My bobbin tension was great on the first machine, and sometimes on this one. Very frustrating.

    Thanks for the suggestions, keep em coming, please.

  8. #8
    Super Member wesing's Avatar
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    We had the same problem on our Pfaff. We think that we get lint balls or thread in the tension discs. Try loosening the tension as much as you can, then take dental floss to the discs and see if you dislodge anything. I have taken mine completely apart before, but if you do that be prepared to pay VERY CAREFUL attention to all the parts and how they fit together.

    I hope you get your problem fixed. I understand how frustrating that is.

    Darren

  9. #9
    Super Member grammyp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wesing
    We had the same problem on our Pfaff. We think that we get lint balls or thread in the tension discs. Try loosening the tension as much as you can, then take dental floss to the discs and see if you dislodge anything. I have taken mine completely apart before, but if you do that be prepared to pay VERY CAREFUL attention to all the parts and how they fit together.

    I hope you get your problem fixed. I understand how frustrating that is.

    Darren

    We took out the tension assembly, cleaned and replaced it when we first got it because it was not completely inserted into the machine and there was no tension. Then it worked well for a while, then started breaking thread. So we cleaned it again. Cleaned the bobbin trace and case, and it still does it.

    Sigh.

  10. #10
    Super Member Eddie's Avatar
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    I've got a Gammill longarm, but the guy who came and set it up and taught me how to use it talked to me about the tension on it. For the bobbin, he showed me how to check it by putting the bobbin of thread in the bobbin case and then holding the end of the thread in one hand and let the case go -- he said the bobbin case should descend like a spider going down -- not too fast, and not too slow, but like you would think a spider would. Once you get the bobbin tension right then it's a matter of getting the top tension correct. Loops on the back means the top thread is too loose. Thread breaking means the top thread tension is too tight. Good luck!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by grammyp
    OK here is the back story. Last year for Christmas DH got me a Voyager 17 mid arm and frame. The machine had a crack in the finish, so they took it back and replaced it. The new machine is driving me nuts. The presser foot tension knob was broken off, they sent a new one. Now it is either eating thread or looping on the back. I have changed needles, thread, and bobbin cases, re-threaded, adjusted tension on the machine and the quilt in the frame (thought it may be stretched too tight). I can get it to sew well for about 3 minutes, then it starts skipping stitches and breaks the thread. Then sometimes it will get loops on the back (sometimes big, sometimes little). I'm at my wit's end. I'm going to ask them to send me a new tension assembly and see if that helps.

    Does anyone have any more suggestions? Please, something. I need some wine.
    I am not sure if this will help or not, but for a short time I was having a similar problem with my Gammill. The dealer had me to adjust the thread guide right in front of my upper tension disc. By moving the thread guide to a tipped position it allowed the thread to have a more even tension to it and it didn't pop out of the tension disc causing breaking threads, back loops and uneven bottom tension. So check to see if there is a thread guide that you can loose and turn counterclock wise to get it tipped to what would be between 2 and 3 oclock if you were looking at a clock. Hope this helps. It made a world of difference for me and took 30 seconds to correct.

    Good luck,
    Sherryl
    Candlequilter

    If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask or just PM me.

  12. #12
    Super Member grammyp's Avatar
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    I haven't tried that Sherryl. There is a thread guide there, I'll see if I can adjust it. Thanks. I have adjusted guide above the spool and that helped with back loops.

  13. #13
    Super Member butterflywing's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by charismah
    I am so sorry that happened...very frustrating! I actually bought that machine myself and had similar issues.....i quilted one quilt then it went out of time..so I sent the whole thing back and got my money back. SO I bought an Innova...sorry I can't help you but pretty soon you will either have a whole new machine that you assembled yourself...part by part??.....or you will be a whiz at tension issues! Gotta look at the bright side of things!
    on this issue, i have to agree. i would send it back. they cost too much to keep having problems with it.

  14. #14
    Super Member grammyp's Avatar
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    Sherryl, the thread guide is fixed, so no adjustment.

    The grands are spending the day and night tonight, so no sewing. But tomorrow I will clean the bobbin trace again and see if that helps. Them Monday I will contact Nolting and if they cannot get it fixed call Hinterburg and have them pick it up for replacement again. I don't object to having to adjust new machines, but this has reached the point of absurd.

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