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Thread: Sewing machine and tune-ups

  1. #1
    Junior Member juliasb's Avatar
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    Sewing machine and tune-ups

    I just recently had one of my machines in the shop for a tune up when it froze up and the tension was in such bad shape that I thought I would lose the machine forever. It was also smelling like wire burning no a good sign. I thought for sure the machine was dead. I was blessed when it just needed a good tune up and it cost me very little. You can't imagine my relief. I have not taken any of my machines in for a tune up before. I have a few others that could most likely use a good tune up now that I know just how important this is.
    Now the big question, just how often should a machine be tuned up, especially if it is in constant use. I mean making several quilts a year and added sewing in between. I also have a couple embroidery machines that have never been tuned up and they get a great deal of extended use. My antique machines I take care of myself. These machines that are made after the 1980's are the ones that concern me.
    Or do you, like me, only take the machine in when it dies.

  2. #2
    Junior Member TAMARATJO's Avatar
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    I have a HV Topaz 20 (with embroidery unit) I do a lot of sewing, and I take my machine in once a year for routine cleaning/check up. It hasn't had any problems, but it is an expensive machine, and I want to take care of it. I have not had the embroidery unit serviced. Heard you only need to do that if you have problems.

  3. #3
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    It depends on the machine. I take mine in every three yrs but manage to keep it clean myself between times. I think it varies with each individual I have two emb machines and two others. All Janomes they seem to be work horses and I use them all for diff. things.

  4. #4
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    You don't say if you clean your machines. I can't get too far into my machine but I take off the needle plate periodically(usually before any large project) and vacuum out any dust I can with a miniature set of vacuum tools. I was also taught at a machine care class to put one drop of oil in the center of the bobbin case even though my manual says it doesn't need oil. My machine is a computerized Baby Lock Espire. By doing this I've only taken my machine in for service once after 4 years of limited use and more recently twice in 4 years. Once was because I was hearing a weird noise.
    Sally

  5. #5
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    It also depends on if you have a reliable service person to take it too. I've had some repairmen cause more damage then they fixed. I always put a tell somewhere on the machine that would have to be removed if proper cleaning was done. A few times at different shops I point it out that it wasn't cleaned and just get a shrug, no use arguing but at least they know I know and if I know my whole guild will know.
    I believe giving what I can will never cause me to be in need.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member lyric girl's Avatar
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    This seems to be just how much money your dealer wants to make.

    However, my Bernina 770QE is over 2 years old and has yet to be serviced. Apparently my machine will tell me when it's time for it to be serviced and my dealer just keeps telling me to not bother bringing it in, so I don't worry about it.

    That being said, I do oil my machine as my dealer recommended (and no, not all machines take oil) and I clean out what I can see when I oil.
    Last edited by QuiltnNan; 06-13-2019 at 04:33 PM. Reason: shouting/all caps

  7. #7
    Power Poster Onebyone's Avatar
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    All machines need oil. There are parts that can't be gotten to without special tools and assembly know-how. That is why with the high end machines maintenance by a tech is required. Some mid range machines have silicone embedded gears that do not need oil except in certain spots. All machines need a drop or two of oil in the bobbin section.
    I believe giving what I can will never cause me to be in need.
    Being cheap is not a badge of honor.
    My heroes are working people, paying their own way, taking care of their children and being decent human beings.

  8. #8
    Super Member Stitchnripper's Avatar
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    I use a mostly mechanical machine - it has a board for the needle up/down and thread cutter. I clean it and oil it regularly. I have a repair person and she just started offering individual instruction on one’s own machine. Teaches how to take the top and bottom off etc and clean and oil. I’m going to do that and she is there if the boards ever go south.
    Alyce

  9. #9
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    I think it also depends on what types of fabric you are sewing on. Some fabrics, like minky or acrylic fur, will really jam up your machine in a hurry. Also some brands of thread produce more lint than others. My wonderful repairman has kept my 40+year-old Viking workhorse going for over 20 years, and never once has he tried to sell me a new machine. To add an unrelated piece of useful information, his #1 recommendation to getting a true and quality stitch is frequently replacing your needle, even if it seems ok.

  10. #10
    Super Member SusieQOH's Avatar
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    I have a very reliable Bernina dealer who services mine every 2 years. I maintain my older machines by myself.

  11. #11
    Power Poster Jingle's Avatar
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    The two straight stitch only machines I use all the time just needs oil and cleaning which I do myself. Never been serviced.
    Another Phyllis
    This life is the only one you get - enjoy it before you lose it.

  12. #12
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    I take my one computerized machine in yearly, and sometimes I bring one of my vintage machines, since I never seem to have the time to do my own servicing. Since my service guy is 9 hours(1 way) away, I also have my eye exam, my hair cut scheduled at the same time.

  13. #13
    Super Member cashs_mom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SusieQOH View Post
    I have a very reliable Bernina dealer who services mine every 2 years. I maintain my older machines by myself.
    This is what I do. My Bernina's don't tell me when they need servicing and since I have a lot of machines and don't sew on any one of them a great deal, I do every 2 years. When the Bernina was my only machine, I took it in once a year. It did cost me, but it was a top of the line machine and like having your oil changed in your car, I considered it good insurance against larger problems.
    Patrice S

    Bernina Artista 180, Singer 301a, Featherweight Centennial, Rocketeer, Juki 2200 QVP Mini, White 1964 Featherweight

  14. #14
    Super Member citruscountyquilter's Avatar
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    I sew a lot so over the years I have taken my machines in yearly for a tune up. I have a 1977 Viking that is still going strong and has been passed on to my daughter. That is a mechanical machine. I have my newer computerized machines also serviced every 12-18 months with me cleaning in between. I service my Featherweights myself.
    I think it is important to take care of expensive equipment, just like I do my car.

  15. #15
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    I take mine in once a year. I have 3 machines to keep in good working order. One thing the service call does is get the lint from deep inside that I cannot reach.

    On another note, my friend has the same machine I have (one of them) and she does her own service on it. She will take it apart and clean and oil it. I prefer to have the dealer do that for me. :-)

  16. #16
    Member christinelf's Avatar
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    I have a Sears Kenmore machine from 2010, and I try to get in for maintance once a year. Last year when I took it in the person taking them in said I should just buy a new one, not worth the bother to maintain it. Really?!?!

  17. #17
    Super Member Aurora's Avatar
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    All my machines are vintage. I have two identical machines that I alternately use, so I can take the other one in for a good cleaning. Basic oiling I handle myself.
    Aurora

    "A dying culture invariably exhibits personal rudeness. Bad manners. Lack of consideration for others in minor matters. A loss of politeness, of gentle manners, is more significant than is a riot." -Robert A. Heinlein

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