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Thread: Thread breakage

  1. #1
    Senior Member mommessy's Avatar
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    Thread breakage

    Okay, I'm not too new at FMQing, have done a few quilts. My problem is my thread keeps breaking. I am usng an embroidery needle, started out using cotton thread....no good! Too many breaks! Then I switched to a polyester. It's doing better but still breaks every once in a while. I have made every adjustment I know how to. Any ideas?
    I have a Sapphire 870.

  2. #2
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    I am very new to machine quilting but I have found out when my thread breaks, my needle needs replace. It is either dull or the wrong size. Hope this helps

  3. #3
    Super Member MartiMorga's Avatar
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    Why the embroidery needle, why not a quilting needle or sharp 80/12?
    God Bless Quilters and Sewers
    Marti

  4. #4
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    I use a machine quilting needle that is SCHMETZ 75/11. You may have to try a few different needles to see what your machine likes. It also could be a speed/hand problem that breaks the thread. Check the thread path to make sure it is flowing smoothly.

  5. #5
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Try a larger needle, especially if you're using a frame. I use a size 18 on my frame.

    Your thread might be brittle. Sharon Schamber dips her thread cones in white mineral oil (and no, it does not leave spots on the fabric, if you use the right oil.)

    And as Tartan said, speed might be a factor. Try slowing down a bit.

  6. #6
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    I have the 870 too -- like it a lot. My settings: free motion spring, tension 3.6-3.8, and pivot at -2. There is also a method using the feed dogs up with zero stitch length for floating free motion -- with this method, you can use the push button start/stop and your only concern is moving the fabric. If you are interested in the specific settings, please let me know.

  7. #7
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    your needle needs to be the correct size for the thread being used- visit the Superior Threads website- where you can download & print charts that tell you which needle (type and size) to use with the different threads, (type and weight)...what each is good for- and plenty of hints, tips & help...it's a good resource. could be the problem is the embroidery needle- their *eye* is shaped differently and might be fraying the thread. also, if the needle has been used for more than 8 hours it might just be time to change it to a new one- correct size, type needle with the {corresponding} correct thread, type & weight will make a difference- as long as it's a nice, new, sharp needle....for quilting people generally choose a 'sharp', 'universal' or quilting needle. i would only use an embroidery needle if i was doing specialty, embroidery stitches as my quilting- then i would need to use an embroidery thread.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  8. #8
    Senior Member mommessy's Avatar
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    Hulalulu, yes I would love your settings! Thank you so much for your help.

    As far as using an embroidery needle, I was recently told to use those at my LQS by a very experienced machine quilter. But today I stopped in to see the Husky dealer and had a quick lesson. Right now I am using an Inspira quilting size 90 needle and life is good!

    Thank you all for all your suggestions!

  9. #9
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    This info is for free motion quilting using zero stitch length with feed dogs down, for the Sapphire 870, etc. It was originally posted on the Sapphire group page at Yahoo groups: Set machine for free motion floating, use your "R" foot (darning), set fabric at "C" for heavy, leave feed dogs up, set stitch length at zero, needle down and use an embroidery needle. Have found that you can use any open toe foot, and embroidery needle may be optional (am using a Superior topstitch 80/12 titanium -- for just about everything). Once you have gotten used to this a little, use your start/stop buttons, and set a speed you are comfortable with -- then all you have to think about is the movement of the fabric -- if you get spooked, hit the foot pedal and the machine will stop. I just did a little practice to be sure I have all the settings right -- my needle doesn't seem to want to stay down, but it's still working perfectly, not an eyelash or whiplash to be found .... have fun!

  10. #10
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    I've had very good luck with topstitch needles, size 16 for FMG on the frame. If the thread is breaking, check to see if the quilt top is too taut on the frame. If it is, the rail needs to be lowered a bit to allow the top to lay on the surface.

  11. #11
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    Glad you changed needles - I think that was your whole problem.

  12. #12
    Super Member Dolphyngyrl's Avatar
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    I would use a quilting or topstitch needle, not an embroidery, your needle probably too small and or you might be going to fast, there are a lot of variables in machine quilting, most likely its needle. are you ussing a thick thread I would go 90 size for quilting unless you are using a 30wt thread than I would go 100
    Brother XL-3500i, SQ-9050, Dreamweaver XE6200D, Juki MO-2000QVP

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by mommessy View Post
    Hulalulu, yes I would love your settings! Thank you so much for your help.

    As far as using an embroidery needle, I was recently told to use those at my LQS by a very experienced machine quilter. But today I stopped in to see the Husky dealer and had a quick lesson. Right now I am using an Inspira quilting size 90 needle and life is good!

    Thank you all for all your suggestions!
    This was going to be my suggestion. I'm new to FMQ too but having a good time and for me its so easy. Partly because my machine does all of the thinking for me, thread positioning, tension, it'll even tell me what needle to use. I like the 90 sharp, it goes thru the fabric easier, I also use it for embroidery. I use cotton thread if it's a quilt and I want it to last. Polyester thread is strong but over time it'll cut into the fabric and won't hold up. If I'm doing a wall hanging or purse, etc then I use what ever looks the best. The good thing about the Inspira needle is that inside the bottom of the eye, it is flat so the thread just glides over it, most needles have an oval shape inside of the needle eye. Good luck with it all.
    Judy

  14. #14
    Super Member Peckish's Avatar
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    Poly thread does not cut into fabric. Gotta love those old wives tales that refuse to die.

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