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Thread: Needle question

  1. #1
    Senior Member familyfun's Avatar
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    I have not been quilting for very long and I just read a post on FMQ.. Great Info on there you guys are Awsome.. Anyway I have practived a little and get frustrated because I am really bad at it... (I need to fashion some kind of extension table for my machine..) I think that will really help.
    Anyway. Back to my question.. They said use larger needle well I usually use a 80/12 for piecing.. It seems to work fine.
    Now.. Is that a big or little needle ?? What size do you usually use for FMQ ?

  2. #2
    Super Member cbridges22's Avatar
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    I can't wait to see the answers you get.I am to afraid to try FMQ.

  3. #3
    Super Member katier825's Avatar
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    I usually use a 90/14 for most everything. Quilting needles when doing Quilting and Universal for piecing. 90/14 would be bigger than 80/12.

  4. #4
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    I use a 16 or 18 for quilting. I have a midarm on a frame.

  5. #5
    Senior Member AnnieF's Avatar
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    I usually use an 11 or 12 to piece but a 16 or 18 to machine quilt. I FMQ all of my quilts and I like to use decorative threads and you really need to think about using a larger needle when you have a 35 wt thread. Also, I was just at a quilt weekend and a question came up from someone about when to change the needle. One girl had gotten her new machine in early summer and had not changed the needle. She does a lot of piecing. We told her that the weird thumping noise was her sewing machine forcing a dull needle though multiple layers of fabric. She changed the needle, the thumping stopped and she said she thought the machine was going faster....why wouldn't it...it wasn't working as hard pushing the needle into the fabric. We agreed that 8 hours of quilting or piecing was enough wear and tear for one needle....throw it out, put in a new one and go on your way.

  6. #6
    Super Member purplemem's Avatar
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    I use the Universal Quilting needles for quilting and it has made a huge difference. I think this is a 90/14.

  7. #7
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    It DEPENDS ON THE THREAD!!! Sorry to shout, but you might quilt with super fine silk and a 70 needle, or thick thread and a 100. The Superior Threads site has excellent, thorough info on this. Using a needle that's too small for your thread will cause shreds and breaks, too big and you are putting big holes in your fabric for no reason. It's like asking, "what size pants should I buy?". It's going to depend on what you are trying to squeeze in there :).

  8. #8
    Super Member EasyPeezy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maia B
    It DEPENDS ON THE THREAD!!! Sorry to shout, but you might quilt with super fine silk and a 70 needle, or thick thread and a 100. The Superior Threads site has excellent, thorough info on this. Using a needle that's too small for your thread will cause shreds and breaks, too big and you are putting big holes in your fabric for no reason. It's like asking, "what size pants should I buy?". It's going to depend on what you are trying to squeeze in there :).
    Well said. :thumbup: I use the thread from Connecting Threads and use Schmetz Quilting needle 90/14. Anything smaller would shred the thread.

  9. #9
    Super Member JanetM's Avatar
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    An 80/20 is a basic piecing needle. A Sulky expert I know says that you should use a 90/14 topstitch needle for FMQ.

    It has a larger eye for the thread so it causes less friction on the thread, meaning fewer thread breaks.

  10. #10
    Super Member JanetM's Avatar
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    Oops, double post. :oops:

  11. #11
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    go to leah day's web site; she'll answer all of your questions on FMG; she does it all on a reqular machine. She has a setup for tables; nothing fancy that helps hold the quilt. You'll learn alot from her site.

  12. #12
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    I used to use a 14 but had a lot of breakage. I now use 16 for cotton and 18 if poly as my frame manufacturere suggested and it rarely breaks.

  13. #13
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    the needle you use must be (usable) with the thread you are using- needle size and thread size/weight are dependent on each other- the wrong needle with the thread will cause fraying/breakage/tension problems/uneven stitching...just to name a few issues.
    if you visit a thread site (like superior threads they offer free charts that tell you what needle and size you should use with each different type/weight of thread- it is an invaluable chart.

  14. #14
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    I use a bigger needle than a 12. I use a 14 topstitch needle and that seems to work for me.

  15. #15
    Senior Member familyfun's Avatar
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    Great information from everyone... Thank you for all the replies.. I will definatley check out the websites suggested.
    Thanks again.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maia B
    It DEPENDS ON THE THREAD!!! Sorry to shout, but you might quilt with super fine silk and a 70 needle, or thick thread and a 100. The Superior Threads site has excellent, thorough info on this. Using a needle that's too small for your thread will cause shreds and breaks, too big and you are putting big holes in your fabric for no reason. It's like asking, "what size pants should I buy?". It's going to depend on what you are trying to squeeze in there :).
    Yes it does!. i usually quilt with a 90//14 but recently used a heavier quilting thread. Wasn' t completely happy with the way it was working. Switched to a 100/16 and it made a world of difference in the quilting.

  17. #17
    mim
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    Super Member mim's Avatar
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    How about the difference between ball point and sharp point?? Back when poly knits were all the rage I used ball point needles (at least I think that's what they were called).

    Mim

  18. #18
    Super Member DogHouseMom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maia B
    It DEPENDS ON THE THREAD!!! Sorry to shout, but you might quilt with super fine silk and a 70 needle, or thick thread and a 100. The Superior Threads site has excellent, thorough info on this. Using a needle that's too small for your thread will cause shreds and breaks, too big and you are putting big holes in your fabric for no reason. It's like asking, "what size pants should I buy?". It's going to depend on what you are trying to squeeze in there :).
    I agree. I've rarely changed needle size just because I'm quilting as opposed to piecing.

    I also make a practice sandwich EVERY TIME I begin to quilt. I practice with the same fabric, batting, thread, needle and to a certain degree the pattern that I'm quilting (or at least a small portion).

    I've quilted and thread painted with a 70 using a high quality 50wt thread with no problems.

    Another word. 50wt isn't always the same "thickness". A 50wt Superior, Aurifil, Mettler, or Gutterman is much thinner than a 50wt C&C or Connecting Threads. I believe it is dependant on the staple length used to make the thread (I'm referring only to cotton thread). So you can't just go by the weight ... feel it and use it.

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