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Thread: Thread snob sewing machines

  1. #1
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    Thread snob sewing machines

    I find these posts interesting - the ones that say "My machine will only perform properly if I'm using _______ thread."

    From that, I can draw several conclusions:

    The finicky machines could be PIDA's and more bother than they are worth to fight with them
    or
    The user/operator is very finicky and/or doesn't know how to operate the machine properly
    or
    Some of the unfinicky machines are better choices for some of us.

    But if machine, thread, and operator are 'good to go' - life is good on that planet at that moment.


    There actually are some threads that I avoid using for anything other than overcasting a raw edge before washing the fabric - and even for that purpose, I try to use a lighter colored thread than whatever color the fabric is.

    PS: Some thread(s) probably are better than other threads - I just think that a finicky sewing machine would be frustrating!
    Last edited by bearisgray; 09-18-2012 at 11:05 AM.

  2. #2
    Super Member thepolyparrot's Avatar
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    I think so, too. A machine uses whatever I put into it, or I'll find out what's "off" and make it work.

    Of course, I don't try to use hand-quilting thread or rope in the needle - there are some things that a domestic sewing machine will not do.

    But lots of times, I see people saying that their machine won't take anything but "X" brand of thread and I would take that as a challenge. I would want to tinker around and figure out how to make it take the kind of thread they want to use. Usually it's only a matter of changing the needle and/or balancing the tensions.

    If I ran across a lot of reviews for a machine that said, "You can only use X brand" in this machine, I just wouldn't buy it.

    I see this a LOT with longarm machines - and as much as you pay for a longarm, that machine better sew whatever you give it to sew!

  3. #3
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    when i first purchased my Viking the dealer told me to NEVER try to use Coats & Clark thread in it- NEVER-EVER!!!
    told horror stories- said it would mess up the machine, said it simply would not accept it-
    for the first year i did not use any c&c thread- then one day came along- i needed to use a c&c thread- it was what i had in the color/weight i needed- and i threaded it- quaking with fear of doing damage to this horribly expensive machine...
    it sewed just fine- nothing happened- no alarms went off- the thread did not break, knot, cause any problems...
    took me awhile but i finally figured out- they just wanted to sell the expensive thread they were selling- (some of which i find to be garbage!)
    so, anyhow-
    i no longer think of my machine as (finicky)
    that being said- the long arm is a bit more finicky---some threads just do not handle the high-speed action of that machine...so that's a whole different issue.
    hiding away in my stash where i'm warm, safe and happy

  4. #4
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    Most machine owners go by what the dealer tells them. I don't think the brand matters as much as using the right size needle for the wt and ply of the thread. Not many know the ply of the thread they are using so the needle will fight with the thread thus the 'machine' doesn't like that brand of thread.
    Got fabric?

  5. #5
    Super Member Lori S's Avatar
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    If a dealer told me that a machine was finiky and had preference for a particular thread ... I would not buy the machine. I have two machines , a Singer 306W and a Viking... Niether would not be in my house if they were fussy. I use everything from cheap serger thread , invisable thread, metalic , you name it I run it threw my machines. None have suffered .
    I do have quite an inventory of various needles , as mentioned most issues can be resolved with the right needle or thread path. Keeping a good cleaning schedule ( for lint issues) is important if the thread is linty.
    Last edited by Lori S; 09-18-2012 at 12:44 PM.

  6. #6
    Super Member miss_ticky2's Avatar
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    I put pretty much anything I have in my thread collection on my 7700 and haven't had a problem. Except when I tried to FMQ with a Sulky No.12 cotton which kept breaking...I changed to a 30 and it was fine.
    Blessings from Janice

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    I had a singer for 25 yrs and now my daughter owns it, I have a Kenmore/Janome and a Viking Ruby and a Mega quilter. The only thing the Viking dealer told me is that Viking recommends the Aurifil in the mega quilter but I was never discouraged from using any thread. I've used them all and even more so now that I'm into embroidery. I had one issue embroidering w/serger thread and researched until I found a possible problem and that fixed that. For what I was doing I had to double up on the stabilizer and go up in the needle size; no more thread breakage. I've had a spool of thread that I'd used before all of sudden act up; I take if from the top of my machine and put it in a coffee cup and it's very happy. I don't have any threads that my machine doesn't take and take well. I do think some times you might have to figure out a better position or needles or something to make it work but I've never failed but truth be told, I've had very little trouble with any threads in any of my machines. I agree, who would want a machine if you had to only use one thread; what happens is that co goes out of business. Life is too short to have a machine spazing over something as simple as thread.
    Judy

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    ckcowl, I was told that C&C would be terrible in my machine too and they recommended Robison-Anton and they gave me a bunch of it to start off with....honestly I can't tell the difference, I think the R-A thread is just as linty as C&C. It just comes on bigger spools. LOL

    My machine sews with whatever I put into it. I DO prefer Aurifil (especially for piecing) because it's so thin and low-lint and I can fit so much on a bobbin, but I have loads of C&C and A-R left; I tend to use that for quilting because it's a little thicker and I want the threads to show. I certainly am not about to throw it out, I must have miles of thread!

    Connecting Threads brand is my new favorite thread behind Aurifil though. SO inexpensive, and seems just as good (if not better) than C&C or R-A, and tons of colors to pick from. Linty, sure, but it's not that hard to clean out my machine every now and then. I sew a lot of flannel so I have piles of lint no matter what anyway. I'm waiting for another CT thread sale and I'm going to buy a whole rainbow! I just wish they had varigated thread.

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    Maxi-Lock has a beautiful series of varigated thread and here's a link to the best pricing I've been able to find
    http://www.wawak.com/products/product.cfm?pID=10511
    The colors are so much prettier in person. My local quilt shop sells the same item for $14 instead of the $4.85 from WaWak.

  10. #10
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    I have lots of Robison-Anton poly embroidery thread and it's very linty and has lots of slugs. I have to use a larger needle. If you can look at any brand thread under a microscope you will be very surprised at the thick and thin spots and the slugs in it. You can tell immediately which thread is the best but all have flaws.
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  11. #11
    Senior Member Chester the bunny's Avatar
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    Sometimes my Kenmore will skip stitches if I use certain brands. Believe me I'm not picky as I will use anything. If it gives me grief on the top, I just put the thread in the bobbin and it works just fine.

  12. #12
    Super Member QuiltnLady1's Avatar
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    I sew with a lot of metalics -- the only thread that consistently breaks is one of the sulky metalics (not all colors, just one). The first time I had trouble with it was in my Elna Supra, then my Pfaff and both of my Janomes. I avoid the color -- not all of them. I don't like invisible thread so I have not tried it. I sew with the C&C all the time -- it and Superior are my go to piecing threads -- and quilting threads. When I can get RA or Aurifil at 50% off, I buy it. My favorite metalic is madeira -- it has tons of colors that I can use to add a little bling.
    QuiltnLady1

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  13. #13
    Super Member maryb119's Avatar
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    My machine like the better thread. My dealer said to avoid Coats and Clark because of the lint it produces. I prefer Metler or Robinson-Anton thread. Gutterman is good too.

  14. #14
    Senior Member quilter1943's Avatar
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    I have Pfaff and Janome machines and my issue seems to be - also with my Viking Mega Quilter - that the bobbin and top threads need to be compatable. Anyone else have problems with different threads in bobbin and top? I don't have an issue with any thread in the machines as long as I do this.
    Nana Jan
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  15. #15
    Senior Member lfletcher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thepolyparrot View Post
    I think so, too. A machine uses whatever I put into it, or I'll find out what's "off" and make it work.

    Of course, I don't try to use hand-quilting thread or rope in the needle - there are some things that a domestic sewing machine will not do.

    But lots of times, I see people saying that their machine won't take anything but "X" brand of thread and I would take that as a challenge. I would want to tinker around and figure out how to make it take the kind of thread they want to use. Usually it's only a matter of changing the needle and/or balancing the tensions.

    If I ran across a lot of reviews for a machine that said, "You can only use X brand" in this machine, I just wouldn't buy it.

    I see this a LOT with longarm machines - and as much as you pay for a longarm, that machine better sew whatever you give it to sew!
    You are right that you do see comments from a lot of longarm quilters that their machine prefers certain thread. I'm fairly certain my machine can use any thread, but I have a fear of messing too much with the tension settings. I have a gauge for the bobbin tension and I am just now getting comfortable branching out a bit on different thread. If you're willing to spend some time playing with the tension, I bet any machine could be made to use any thread. (I'm just not willing to spend that time--rather be quilting.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by QuiltnLady1 View Post
    I sew with a lot of metalics -- the only thread that consistently breaks is one of the sulky metalics (not all colors, just one). The first time I had trouble with it was in my Elna Supra, then my Pfaff and both of my Janomes. I avoid the color -- not all of them. I don't like invisible thread so I have not tried it. I sew with the C&C all the time -- it and Superior are my go to piecing threads -- and quilting threads. When I can get RA or Aurifil at 50% off, I buy it. My favorite metalic is madeira -- it has tons of colors that I can use to add a little bling.
    The Floriani rep said that no matter what brand if you turn the spool of metalics upside down when you sew you won't have any problems with breakage. You could always try.
    Judy

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    Quote Originally Posted by quilter1943 View Post
    I have Pfaff and Janome machines and my issue seems to be - also with my Viking Mega Quilter - that the bobbin and top threads need to be compatable. Anyone else have problems with different threads in bobbin and top? I don't have an issue with any thread in the machines as long as I do this.
    Sure do, it is recommended to always use the same in top and bottom. I've tried the "bobbin thread" in my Ruby and it messes up every time. So I just don't use it. It's not worth trouble shooting to find out why when I have lots of other thread to use.
    Judy

  18. #18
    Super Member nhweaver's Avatar
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    My Janome 10000 is over 11 years old now - and uses any thread that is on the market, or is vintage (I thrift store alot).

    It is a different story with my 2 year old viking sapphire 875 Q, picky little sucker. The bobbin area is plastic and poorly made and any bit of lint gives me an error message (remove thread from bobbin area or something like that).
    Never again will I buy a viking. it has been in the shop 2 times for minor repairs (at $175 a pop). now a tiny blade has fallen off from one of those junky plastic rings that holds the bobbin in, don't know how to put it back. Run away from this machine.
    If life gives you lemons, make a margarita.

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    I have a Juki 98TLQ and it's a workhorse. It's very strong so the thread has to be strong. I can not sew with any of the invisible threads - snaps the thread every time. Coats and Clarks works just fine in it as does the cone thread.

    My Babylock Espire sews with all the thread I have and I have quite a collection.

    Sometimes it's not the machine - it's the fabric you are trying to sew. I found out that when making my husbands t-shirt quilt that the only invisible thread that did not break was the Sulky brand. Trying to sew through t-shirt material with the pellon fusible was difficult.

    And then sometimes sewing with the wrong size needle for the fabric you are sewing. I always keep my manual handy and if I have a problem with sewing start checking for the problem.

  20. #20
    Power Poster BellaBoo's Avatar
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    C&C has started to sponsor many quilt shows and buy the big ads in the magazines. I've noticed more endorsement of C&C thread in the past two years then ever before. The oldest thread and the most profitable thread company can't have bad thread or it wouldn't still be in business. Industry wouldn't use it. That is just plain sense.
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  21. #21
    Super Member Deborahlees's Avatar
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    I have been piecing all of my quilts with So Fine from Superior Threads, it is a 50 wt, and I love it .....machine doesn't care a bit....just as long as she gets thread....but the So Fine just disapears into the seams so nice it is unbelieveable....
    Yes that is a real picture of my hometown Temecula, California. We feature premiere Wineries, World Class Golf Courses, Pechanga Indian Casino and Hot Air Balloons

  22. #22
    Super Member Gladys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lori S View Post
    If a dealer told me that a machine was finiky and had preference for a particular thread ... I would not buy the machine. I have two machines , a Singer 306W and a Viking... Niether would not be in my house if they were fussy. I use everything from cheap serger thread , invisable thread, metalic , you name it I run it threw my machines. None have suffered .
    I do have quite an inventory of various needles , as mentioned most issues can be resolved with the right needle or thread path. Keeping a good cleaning schedule ( for lint issues) is important if the thread is linty.
    Agreed and I love Coats and Clark thread including the hand quilting, machine quilting and the polyester thread for some items.

  23. #23
    Senior Member allie1448's Avatar
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    I have an HQ Avante and she loves any threads! The only problems I have run into is with the Mettler silknand even that will stitch if I slow down. I think it is not as strong as a cotton or poly.

  24. #24
    Super Member Edie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sewnoma View Post
    ckcowl, I was told that C&C would be terrible in my machine too and they recommended Robison-Anton and they gave me a bunch of it to start off with....honestly I can't tell the difference, I think the R-A thread is just as linty as C&C. It just comes on bigger spools. LOL

    My machine sews with whatever I put into it. I DO prefer Aurifil (especially for piecing) because it's so thin and low-lint and I can fit so much on a bobbin, but I have loads of C&C and A-R left; I tend to use that for quilting because it's a little thicker and I want the threads to show. I certainly am not about to throw it out, I must have miles of thread!

    Connecting Threads brand is my new favorite thread behind Aurifil though. SO inexpensive, and seems just as good (if not better) than C&C or R-A, and tons of colors to pick from. Linty, sure, but it's not that hard to clean out my machine every now and then. I sew a lot of flannel so I have piles of lint no matter what anyway. I'm waiting for another CT thread sale and I'm going to buy a whole rainbow! I just wish they had varigated thread.
    I love Connecting Threads brand also. I have a drawer full of their packages of thread and I usually get the soft colors as opposed to the brights - I don't do a heckuva lot of bright stuff - Their brand is Essential and I got the Homestead and it is absolutely gorgeous. I think I would like to get the Woodland next, but I do wait until they go on sale. I use the Natural for sewing squares together and I bought twelve of them on sale last year. I don't mind the $2.49 for a spool since there is 1200 yards of thread on the spool. That can last me quite a while! We are a crazy lot, aren't we? We can sit and look and feel our fabric for hours and look in the drawer at our thread.

    I have used Coats and Clark Dual Duty XP - All purpose variegated thread and it works fine for me. There are many different colors....all of them quite lovely. Check that out! I got mine at JoAnn's (on sale of course or with coupons! Isn't that something? You can't afford thread anymore unless it is on sale or you have coupons!

    Sign of the times, I guess.
    Edie
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  25. #25
    Super Member Yooper32's Avatar
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    My Kenmore/Janome takes whatever I feed it and says "thanks". I say thanks too. If I use like "bottom line" in the bobbin and 50 on top, it might take some tension adjusting, but that only makes sense. Maybe that combination doesn't make sense to some of you, but it has been done and the roof didn't collapse.
    Yooper32 aka: Donna B

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