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stitch length

stitch length

Old 08-01-2020, 06:09 AM
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Default stitch length

I plan to do some light marine canvas sewing. have a vintage Kenmore 148-13100 and my stitches seem too close together. I used a heat gun on low and oiled it with triflow. That helped. On the "8" setting, they seem to be about 2.5mm long. But I'd like to get the stitches as long as they are on the basting stitch setting. Those are about 4mm. BTW, is there any reason I can't use the basting stitch as a permanent stitch? Seems plenty strong to me.
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Old 08-01-2020, 06:36 AM
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you want a minimum of 12 stitches per inch. Your Kenmore should have a setting for 12". The 8" or less may look strong enough but over time they will not hold.
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Old 08-01-2020, 06:38 AM
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If the basting stitch passes whatever tug tests you do and is what you want, then sure. Sometimes you have to use huge stitches on upholstery and canvas.

You are also using an appropriate needle? Both in size and maybe type if you still aren't getting quite the stitch you want from a universal type, look at Denim or Topstitch needles, probably size 16 or so.
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Old 08-01-2020, 07:09 AM
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A favorite site with helpful info here with other video tutorials.

https://www.sailrite.com/french-seam...ction-tutorial

What type of thread are you using for sewing? I have ordered and used their heavy threads and they held up well with my projects for our boat.

https://www.sailrite.com/Notions/Threads/Indoor-Thread

Last one is a thread guide.

https://www.sailrite.com/Selecting-t...ht-Thread-Size

Good luck with your project!
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Old 08-01-2020, 09:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Iceblossom View Post
If the basting stitch passes whatever tug tests you do and is what you want, then sure. Sometimes you have to use huge stitches on upholstery and canvas.

You are also using an appropriate needle? Both in size and maybe type if you still aren't getting quite the stitch you want from a universal type, look at Denim or Topstitch needles, probably size 16 or so.
How do I determine correct needle size? I''ll probably need to sew thru 4 layers of sunbrella at most and for only short bursts. Most other runs will be two layers.
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Rhonda K View Post
A favorite site with helpful info here with other video tutorials.

https://www.sailrite.com/french-seam...ction-tutorial

What type of thread are you using for sewing? I have ordered and used their heavy threads and they held up well with my projects for our boat.

https://www.sailrite.com/Notions/Threads/Indoor-Thread

Last one is a thread guide.

https://www.sailrite.com/Selecting-t...ht-Thread-Size

Good luck with your project!
I'm familiar with Sailrite. Thanks for the links.

The basting stitch length seems adequate with regular thread. I assume it will be even stronger with tanara. Just wanted to make sure there was nothing different with the basting stitch construction itself that made it temporary.

Looking at using tenara and buying a big spool in clear so it will match anything I sew. Good idea?

Last edited by sv aquavit; 08-01-2020 at 10:09 AM.
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:11 AM
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The weight of the fabric can cause the stitches to be too close like that. Put you foot down, loosen the tension and try it to see if that helps. Remember to make yourself a note to change it back after your heavy weight fabric project! A walking foot helps to guide the fabric in a heavy weight or say a plaid fabric that needs to match up. It feed the fabric both from the bottom and the top evenly. Make sure you are using a sharp needle the right size for your thread too. Sometimes that can cause a shredding problem with such a closely woven fabric.
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by sv aquavit View Post
How do I determine correct needle size? I''ll probably need to sew thru 4 layers of sunbrella at most and for only short bursts. Most other runs will be two layers.
I typically use smaller needles, 10 to piece with, I'll use 12s, and I typically quilt with 14s so I buy the 3 size assortment pack.

For something like this, I'd start with what I had on hand, so a 14 regular needle and if I didn't like the way it was working, I'd go up from there, if you are going to buy something I'd look at maybe a denim or top stitch needles, maybe something like this pack:
https://www.superiorthreads.com/asso...132-ASSORTMENT
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Old 08-01-2020, 01:37 PM
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Since you are sewing on canvas, longer stitches would be best. Stitches to close together may cut the canvas threads if they are not cotton.
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Old 08-01-2020, 04:39 PM
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Consult the Schmitz web site for needle size. Also need to lengthen stitches to accommodate the thicker fabric. 2.5 is set for two layers of regular quilt fabric weight.
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